Victoria should see more than a full return to pre-pandemic cruise ship traffic levels next year, if an estimate by the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority proves true.
Its 2022 cruise season draft schedule, released Tuesday (Nov. 30), calls for 350 ships and 759,000 passengers to arrive in the city between March and October. By comparison, in 2019 the region saw 264 ships and 700,000 passengers.
The harbour authority based its forecast on feedback from regional and national port partners, but acknowledges that could change in the coming months.
If all does go to plan, the first cruise ship to dock at the Victoria Cruise Terminal in two years will be welcomed on April 6, 2022. Disembarking passengers and crew will have to be vaccinated and new COVID-19 management plans and reporting protocols will be in place, in accordance with federal regulations.
Available figures indicate that in a typical year, cruise ship tourism is a $2.7-billion industry in B.C. that contributes $143 million to the Greater Victoria economy and is responsible for more than 800 local jobs.