Year wraps up for our cruise ship am­bas­sadors

Whitsunday Times - - LOCAL NEWS -

ANOTHER year has wrapped up for the Whit­sun­day cruise ship vol­un­teer am­bas­sadors who wel­comed a sur­prise ex­tra ship yes­ter­day.

Vol­un­teer am­bas­sador co­or­di­na­tor Judi Dunn said ap­par­ently sea con­di­tions were too rough to ten­der pas­sen­gers into Cairns or Port Dou­glas, so the Pa­cific Dawn de­cided to head to Air­lie Beach, ar­riv­ing yes­ter­day, De­cem­ber 18.

A to­tal of seven ships have vis­ited the Whit­sun­days in the past six weeks with 11,765 pas­sen­gers and crew com­ing ashore. Of this num­ber 10,440 vis­ited Air­lie Beach and 2,387 booked tours.

Ms Dunn said this was a great boost to the lo­cal econ­omy be­fore Christ­mas.

For 2013 over­all, the to­tal num­ber of cruise ships call­ing into the Whit­sun­days was 33, bring­ing a to­tal of 48,967 pas­sen­gers and crew. About 41,336 peo­ple vis­ited Air­lie Beach and 14,057 booked tours.

Ms Dunn said the sched­ule for 2014 was yet to be con­firmed but well over 40 ships were ex­pected to visit over the next 12 months. The first ship for the year is Rhap­sody of the Sea, which will ar­rive on Jan­uary 1, fol­lowed by fur­ther ships on Jan­uary 16, 20 and 23.

Mean­while the vol­un­teer am­bas­sadors are look­ing for­ward to a well-earned break and will cel­e­brate their Christ­mas party, this Satur­day, at Pad­dons ma­rina cafe.

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