Opportunity Sri Lanka | » Sri Lanka’s Aitken Spence Travels welcomes three cruise ships in a single day at Colombo Port
Sri Lanka’s Aitken Spence Travels welcomes three cruise ships in a single day at Colombo Port

Sri Lanka’s Aitken Spence Travels welcomes three cruise ships in a single day at Colombo Port

Daily FT: Aitken Spence Travels recently welcomed simultaneous arrivals of three cruise ships — Vasco Da Gama, Mein Schiff 5 and MS Seven Seas Navigator at the port of Colombo.
The vessels had docked with approximately 4,000 passengers from all three vessels on a single day.
The cruise season began last month with the arrival of ‘Resilient Lady’ from Virgin Voyages, a part of Sir Richard Branson’s renowned group. The visit of Marella Discovery 2 that arrived early had special significance, marking its first return to Sri Lanka post-COVID and the first turnaround operation in the country. Operated by TUI, this cruise brought three flights to Colombo for disembarking cruise passengers.
Notably, the Vasco Da Gama cruise marked its maiden call to Sri Lankan shores allowing its passengers an opportunity to immerse themselves in the vibrant city of Colombo before continuing their voyage to the Trincomalee port. They will explore the wonders of Minneriya, Dambulla, Sigiriya, Polonnaruwa, and the enchanting sights of the East Coast. Further, this cruise will have turnaround operations in Male, Maldives.
The seamless arrangement of hosting three cruise ships at the same time all in one day is a testament to Aitken Spence Travels’ exceptional ability to cater to the diverse desires of large groups of concurrent visitors.
As the month progresses, the company looks forward to the arrival of MS Nautica on 17 December. This vessel is set to navigate the waters of Sri Lanka for three days, making stops at the ports of Colombo and Hambantota.
Aitken Spence Travels is committed to providing an extensive array of curated excursions, inviting all visitors to indulge in the diverse landscapes and rich culture of Sri Lanka. The line-up of 14 cruise calls to the ports of Colombo, Hambantota and Trincomalee with the various cruise agents will continue till the end of December 2023 bringing in seas of tourists to the country.
Aitken Spence Travels Managing Director Nalin Jayasundera said: “We are hoping to serve over 10,000 cruise passengers throughout these two months. We are delighted that all these cruise operators are selecting Sri Lanka as part of their cruise itineraries. We have been aggressively promoting the destination and continuously working with the operators to build confidence on the destination for them to pick Sri Lanka. This is not an easy task as we need to be competitive, offering our prices almost 12 months ahead. Once this happens, we cannot revise our rates for any reason despite our operating environmental changes such as taxes, increased entrance fees etc. Our focus is to popularize the destination to attract more cruises.”

OSL take:
The steady growth in Sri Lanka’s tourism industry has witnessed an increase in the number of flights operated to Sri Lanka by international airlines and now there are tourists arriving in Sri Lanka in cruise liners as well. It is clearly indicative of the overall expansion in Sri Lanka’s tourism industry and the increase in business/investment opportunities especially in the leisure and hospitality sectors as well as in the development of infrastructure and supplementary infrastructure facilities required by the industry. With the ongoing tourism promotional campaigns carried out by local authorities and Sri Lanka being identified as a must visit tourist destination by the international media, tourist arrivals to the country is expected to see a further growth. The growing business potential has attracted many foreign businesses/investors to explore the expanding opportunities in the tourism industry.

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Article Code : VBS/AT/20231214/Z_4

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