Looking ahead at 2020
Fujairah kicks off new cruise season
FUJAIRAH Terminals, wholly owned by Abu Dhabi Ports, celebrated the official start of the 2019-2020’s cruise season with the first-ever cruise turnaround conducted at Fujairah Port.The recent call by the Marella Discovery, a cruise liner operated by TUI UK, at Fujairah Terminals marked the first time a visiting vessel dropped off arriving guests and welcomed new visitors during the ship’s stay at the port. To facilitate the turnaround call process, Fujairah Terminals established a temporary cruise terminal to oversee the movement of visitors. The fit-for-purpose facility features a passenger hall, luggage-handling area, and has onsite traffic and logistics support for travellers transferring to and from Dubai World Central airport. AbdulAziz Al Balooshi, acting CEO of Fujairah Terminals, said: “For the first time at Fujairah, we conducted a cruise turnaround call to celebrate the start of the 2019-2020 cruise season. “This event marks a key moment for the emirate and is a culmination of all the hard work done in close collaboration with our government partners to support cruise operations, while at the same time elevating Fujairah’s place as a top destination within the global cruise market.” Noura Rashed Al Dhaheri, cruise terminal manager at Abu Dhabi Ports, said: “We are excited to announce the official start of cruise season here in Fujairah with the arrival of Marella Discovery. The ship is the first of 16 cruises scheduled to arrive for the season, which is slated to end on May 15, 2020. “Starting with seven cruises back in 2016, the number of annual cruise calls has increased significantly over the past few years, highlighting the growing popularity of Fujairah as a top travel destination, and Abu Dhabi Ports’ commitment to growing the cruise market in the UAE.” Since receiving the first cruise ship back in 2016, Fujairah Terminals has experienced a steady increase in the number of calls each year. Expecting to receive 16 cruise calls during the 2019-2020 season, the cruise terminal has recorded a 185 per cent increase in the number of cruises over the past four years. Marella Discovery features 11 decks with 918 cabins and can transport up to 1,800 guests. Embarking on a two-week cruise after leaving Fujairah, Marella Discovery is set to stop in Abu Dhabi. From there, the ship will continue with several excursions planned in Oman and India, before finally arriving in Kochi, India.