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Motril town hall and the port during a meeting to reach an agreement for the new cruise season Javier Martín
Granada port expecting to beat previous cruise ship record in 2024
Costa Tropical

Granada port expecting to beat previous cruise ship record in 2024

Motril port authority estimates that the economic impact of visitors to the town will be in the region of five million euros

Pilar García-Trevijano

Wednesday, 20 March 2024, 17:47

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The port of Motril (Granada province) is starting its new cruise season in April with a forecast of increased growth as well as expectations that it will beats last year's record of 34,600 passengers. In fact the authority is predicting that 60,352 passengers will arrive as 34 different ships stop over at the port in 2024; the highest number of passengers to arrive since the Port Authority was created in 2005.

Motril only recently separated from Almeria port and therefore only has a short history of receiving cruise ships. It is currently way behind other Spanish ports in terms of visitor numbers. However, this looks set to change as Motril focuses on a niche market with more luxury cruise companies and bigger ships.

The port of Motril estimates that the cruise season will have an impact of five million euros for the town's economy. Welcoming large ships with over 2,000 passengers has been a decisive factor which has boosted the growth of Motril as a cruise destination. It is now the third most important port in Andalucía in terms of cruise passenger numbers, with a 64.4 per cent increase in one year.

58 per cent of the ships that stop in Motril are top of the range, premium, luxury or expedition category; ships of a higher quality and spending power per passenger than conventional cruise ships. From April to December the forecast is that 10,058 luxury cruise ship passengers will arrive, while 41 per cent of the cruise ships will be large capacity.

55.5 per cent of the ships that will pass through the docks have visited before, proving that cruise ship companies have had good experiences with both the port and the town. This year four new companies will be including Motril in their itineraries, meaning that seven ships will dock there for the first time.

The Norwegian Dawn will be the first of the season to arrive on 8 April bringing 2,340 crew and 1,026 passengers. The average expenditure in destination per cruise passenger in Spain is 43 euros per day, while in Motril it is 90.70 euros, more than double the national average, although in 2023 it fell slightly to 83 euros.

Motril port authority works closely with the town hall to provide services including shuttles which transport passengers to and from the town centre. In fact, 67.27 per cent of cruise ship passengers visit the town centre, while others travel to different parts of Granada province as well as to Granada city and the Alhambra.

Free shuttle buses

President of the port authority José García Fuentes said during a recent meeting between the port authority and Motril town hall, "The collaboration is vital so that cruise passengers can go to Motril free of charge and take advantage of the tourist offer of the town, just as the alliance we have with Granada city hall, the surrounding municipalities and even Jaén is important." García Fuentes also pointed out that tourism generated by cruise ships helps the sector outside of the traditional summer season.

Mayor of Motril Luisa García Chamorro said during the meeting, "We firmly believe that tourism is fundamental and the cruise ships play an essential role because they are a window on the world."

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