WATCH: The Explorer of the Sea brought in more than three thousand people and injected tens of thousands of dollars into the local economy. Monica Martinez reports.
Longer than three football fields, boasting 15 decks and a capacity of 3800 passengers, the Explorer of the Sea is the largest cruise ship to ever call to Victoria.
“This ship is about 40 feet wider, so almost a third wider, than the ships we typically get into Victoria and she’s about two to three decks higher,” said Ian Robertson, CEO of the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority.
Docked for a full day, it’s unleashing a wave of people into downtown.
Each cruise ship call brings in an average of $40,000 in direct spending to the region, turning a normally sluggish Tuesday, into a flurry of activity.
“We usually we have two or three people roaming in the store on and off and as you can see there’s about twenty people roaming around right now,” said Kevin Lingenfelter, an employee of a gift shop on Government Street.
From shops, to restaurants, everyone is feeling the boost in business.
“It’s been really good, I think the cruise ships are bringing in a lot of people and people are pretty receptive to what we do,” said petty cab driver Trevor Whelon.
The Explorer of the Sea is docked for a full day, and Tourism Victoria said that’s the perfect introduction.
“Research studies show about 70% cruise ship passengers introduced to a place on a day itinerary want to come back on their own vacation and spend longer,” said Tourism Victoria CEO Paul Nursey.
There will be 227 ship calls to Ogden Point this season, bringing more than 500,000 passengers and injecting more than $100-million dollars into Victoria’s economy, making this one of many busy days ahead for Victoria businesses.