Onward and upward in the Cruise Industry

Topping the list of big spenders are international passengers who ring up an average $756 a day on accommodation, shopping, dining and transport before they board their ship. During their cruise they spend $204 a day in the ports they visit, mostly on shopping and tours.

Australian cruisers also like to splurge, spending an average $450 a day before they board their ship as well as $156 a day in ports they visit during their cruise.

With cruise passengers spending more than $700 million across Australia last year, the study found Sydney, Fremantle and Melbourne topped the list in terms of highest daily spend for international passengers pre-cruise ($762, $669 and $612 respectively). Meanwhile Cairns attracted the highest spend from both international passengers and domestic passengers during a cruise ($366 and $187 respectively). (See State breakdowns following.)

Commissioned by peak cruise industry body Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) Australasia, the independent study provides the most comprehensive insight yet into the value of Australia’s booming cruise industry. It follows a separate CLIA report earlier this year that found Australia was the world’s fastest growing cruise source market, with passenger numbers soaring 20 per cent to reach a record 833,348 in 2013 and a population penetration rate of 3.6 per cent.

According to the new study, the cruise industry’s economic output in Australia in 2013 reached a massive $3.2 billion, with direct expenditure by passengers, crew and cruise lines accounting for $1.72 billion of this figure. Indirect and induced economic output accounted for the remaining $1.49 billion.

In addition to the $3.2 billion economic output, the report also found the cruise industry generated $1.59 billion in value added contribution, $940 million in wages and employed 14,000 people across Australia last year.

Prepared for CLIA Australasia by Business Research & Economic Advisors (BREA), the report used a global methodology adopted for economic impact statements on cruise tourism in the US, UK and Europe.

CLIA Australasia Chairman Gavin Smith described the report as a landmark study which clearly captured the far-reaching benefits of a growing cruise industry.

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