ORANJESTAD – This week, another workshop organized by A.T.A. and APA for the cruise industry took place. On the occasion of World Tourism Day, the Ministry of Tourism, APA, and A.T.A. expressed their gratitude, congratulations, and information to those present. Present at the event were the Minister of Tourism, CEO of A.T.A., CEO of APA, partners in the tourism industry, and the A.T.A. team. During the symposium, Ronella Croes, among others, spoke and shared anticipated results for 2023, plans, and key strategies for 2024, reflecting on the cruise industry’s contribution to Aruba’s economy.
2023 Until August 2023, Aruba received 548,480 cruise visitors, compared to 329,645 cruise visitors who arrived in Aruba during the same period in 2022, representing a growth of 66.4%. The number of cruise calls up to August increased to 206 compared to 184 in 2022, marking a 12% growth. The cruise industry continues to recover and anticipates full recovery by the end of 2023.
Economic Impact of the Cruise Sector In addition to measuring the number of cruise visitors to Aruba, A.T.A. also measures the cruise industry’s contribution to Aruba’s economy. From a study conducted in 2018, it can be noted that each cruise visitor leaves an average of $122 behind during their visit. Looking at what the cruise industry produces as a whole, applying this spending pattern, the economic impact this year could be $125,259,234. This is a significant amount for Aruba’s economy. This information will be updated soon, and it is expected that cruise visitors will spend more than in 2018.
Strategy 2024 + Satisfaction For 2024, it is forecasted that the cruise tourism sector will be expecting nearly 900,000 passengers. This demand is the result of good collaboration with commercial partners (such as FCCA and CLIA) and strong cooperation with destinations/ports in the Caribbean. Despite this growth, it remains important for A.T.A. to focus on sustainable and long-lasting growth in this sector, by maintaining the “high value, low impact” tourism model.
Current studies and research indicate that satisfaction and intent to recommend Aruba are high. More attention needs to be paid to the likelihood of visitors returning, either by ship or for a stay longer than a day. To maintain the satisfaction level, A.T.A. works closely with industry partners to improve and diversify our tourist product, ultimately impacting the visitor experience and stimulating their spending on our island. Investments are being made in projects such as the Seroe Colorado Masterplan, mountain biking routes, beach management, improved visitor traffic management, and the “Aruba Quality Seal.” Extra attention is also given to education and the quality of the experience – something that A.T.A. has already been working on. In this regard, it should be mentioned that the A.T.A. team organized a workshop this year focusing on the themes of “Product Development” and “Service Excellence: WOW Edition.”
A.T.A. thanks and applauds those who made good use of the opportunity to attend the two-day workshop.