Rosa (middle) and Jesus More (right) helped Victoria reach the nine million cruise ship passengers all-time mark when they arrived at Ogden Point on July 22. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)

Rosa (middle) and Jesus More (right) helped Victoria reach the nine million cruise ship passengers all-time mark when they arrived at Ogden Point on July 22. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)

9 million and counting: Victoria cruise ship industry marks passenger milestone

Two cruise faithfuls helped Victoria reach the feat

It would be hard to find a more fitting pair of passengers to mark a milestone moment for cruise ships in Victoria than Rosa and Jesus More.

When one of the Washington state residents stepped off their Princess Cruises ocean liner and onto Ogden Point on Friday, they became the nine-millionth cruise ship passenger to arrive in the city. The couple has been to the B.C. capital more than 30 times, with some of those trips being among the 237 cruises they’ve taken together.

“We love the city, it’s beautiful,” Rosa said. “It’s gorgeous, the people are fantastic.”

Ian Robertson, CEO of the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority, called the milestone a significant day for the community after a couple of quiet years at the Victoria port.

“To be able to celebrate the nine-millionth guest I think is a real indication that cruise is back,” he said on Friday.

The harbour authority is expecting close to 800,000 passengers to visit Victoria this season, but hitting the nine million mark has been decades in the making.

Robertson said the cruise industry helps bring in $143 million to the local economy every year. The return of ships means the authority also gets to invest in community amenities, he added, giving the example of a $1-million restoration and repair job on the Broughton Street pier that’s set for completion this fall.

“Without cruise coming back and the money we would earn from cruise, we wouldn’t be able to do those repairs.”

Ian Robertson, CEO of the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority, speaks on July 22 just before Victoria’s nine millionth cruise ship passenger arrived. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)

Ian Robertson, CEO of the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority, speaks on July 22 just before Victoria’s nine millionth cruise ship passenger arrived. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)

While ships docking in Victoria were about half full to start the season, the ones arriving now are averaging around 75 per cent capacity. The harbour authority has also seen some fully-booked vessels arrive.

After receiving some parting gifts for being the milestone passengers, the Mores looked forward to returning to one of their favourite local spots, Butchart Gardens.

Their travels were impeded for 18 months due to the pandemic, so the cruise liner faithfuls were eager to get back.

“As soon as they opened, we were the first ones on board,” Rosa said.

READ: CRD to increase fee for solid waste left in Greater Victoria by cruise ships

A cruise liner that arrived in Victoria on July 22. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)

A cruise liner that arrived in Victoria on July 22. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)


jake.romphf@blackpress.ca. Follow us on Instagram.
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CruisesVictoria