ACA’s John Binkley and Rod Pfleiger outlined the nuts and bolts of how Alaska businesses can create successful partnerships with the cruise industry during the Fairbanks Convention & Visitors Bureau’s first Annual Tourism Conference, sponsored this year by ACA.
The nine member lines of the Alaska Cruise Association will send 28 ships to the state this season, including two new Princess ships and the Celebrity Millennium, the first of the line’s Millennium-class of ships.
Twenty-five of the ships will depart from the Port of Vancouver, B.C., which will welcome 275 ship visits and 900,000 revenue passengers. Ten ships will sail from the Port of Seattle and two from the Port of San Francisco.
With a passenger capacity of 670, the Tahitian Princess inaugurates a new, 14-day itinerary that begins in Vancouver and includes Ketchikan, Glacier Bay, Skagway, Valdez, Seward, Kodiak, Juneau, Sitka and Victoria, B.C. Some 92 percent of the accommodations are outside cabins and 73 percent have private balconies.
The 2,600-passenger Star Princess offers a 7-day Inside Passage itinerary from Seattle. The ship was launched in 2002.
The 2,034 passenger Millennium has the cruise industry’s first gas propulsion system. The system reduces emissions and burns cleaner, creates less noise and vibration, and allows the ship to reach speeds of up to 24 knots. Millennium sails between Vancouver and Seward.
A ship schedule is posted on the Association’s website — www.akcruise.org.