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New Tours Created For Cruise Ship Passengers

Feb 19, 2020

FEBRUARY 18, 2020 – Cruise ship companies are looking for locally authentic on-shore experiences for their passengers, and the Port of Nanaimo is taking extra steps to help support the local business community to create them.

Jason Michell, Vice President of Business and Cruise Development, says the Port has been coordinating opportunities between private sector experiences and vetted local tour operators, as well as continuing engagement with Tourism Nanaimo. He notes that part of the decision-making process for cruise ship companies when choosing where to stop is based upon onshore experiences.

“We have to help the cruise lines, and travel agents’ illustrate the allure of our destination to their passengers with unique regional experiences, while maintaining our central Island culture and values,” Michell says. “We need to prove that we are seeking to be host to travellers and their desire to immerse themselves in other cultures local lifestyle, tradition, and history.”

By actively facilitating and supporting partnerships, bringing vetted tour operators together with  members of the local indigenous tourism community, scientists, artists and other respected experts, the Port Authority aims to catalyze the regional inventory of unique, authentic, high-value experiences.

Over the last 6 months, 12 export-ready experiences have been curated to harness the unique assets of the region in the categories of Sip & Savour, Eco-Immersion, Cultural Exploration and Adventure & Adrenaline, all of which will be available to cruise lines through local operators, but delivered by local, experience specific story-tellers, experts, and guides.

Attracting ships to Nanaimo includes providing cruise lines with vital information including vessel access routes, regulations, berth availability, as well as guest experience opportunities. The Port of Nanaimo will have six cruise ships visit in 2020.  Michell believes the Experience Packages are not only a benefit to local businesses to showcase exceptional cultural, and adventure opportunities, but also for the Port Authority to complete successful presentations to cruise line decision makers. “It is understood that attracting more cruise ships is more than just having an excellent, state-of-the-art cruise ship terminal, which we have,” says President and CEO Ian Marr. “A large part of attracting cruise ships here includes local businesses showcasing opportunities for passengers to get off the ship and enjoy what we have here, and we believe these packages do that very well.”

Port of Nanaimo
PO Box 131
Nanaimo, BC   V9R 5K4

Tel: (250) 753-4146
Fax: (250) 753-4899



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