With the 2013 – 2014 cruise season officially underway, Costa Rica has announced a new strategy to strengthen and promote the cruise industry. “In addition to reaching important agreements with industry executives, we have concentrated our efforts on improving port infrastructure and the amenities available to passengers through our local entrepreneurs,” said Minister of Tourism Allan Flores. “These relationships and efforts will continue to strengthen our position as a cruise destination and create an even better experience for visitors.”
The arrival of the “Island Princess,” operated by Princess Cruises, to the Port of Limón marked the start of a cruise season filled with new arrivals, partnerships and improvements aimed to support the destination’s offerings and passenger services. This was the first of 64 ships expected to arrive in the port city, 12 percent more than last year. Officials also announced plans to include the improvement of infrastructure as well as projects for the recovery of architectural and cultural heritage in the Caribbean city.
As part of the destination’s new strategy, Costa Rica has announced a cooperative partnership with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. Through this partnership, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston and New York will begin promoting travel packages that include three-night stays in Costa Rica, with a city tour, beginning October 31 and running through December 31, 2013.
To further solidify the country’s cruise offerings, a new Mesoamerican regional agreement has also been implemented. For the first time, countries in the region have cooperatively developed a partnership with cruise lines worldwide to introduce new routes through the Pacific. The new route, named Amazing Pacific, will begin operations on January 14, 2014, with the arrival of Azamara Club Cruises, part of the Royal Caribbean fleet, to Costa Rica’s Puerto Caldera region. Additional major Pacific ports will include Nicaragua, El Salvador, Guatemala and Mexico.