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Royal Caribbean's advice to Greece: invest in ports to win cruise war


Royal Caribbean Vice President Commercial & New Business Development, John Tercek, spoke at a recent tourism conference in Greece where he advocated the country invest in its ports to win over more cruise business.

The growing demand for cruise ships forces companies to order bigger ships so if Greece wants to get its share of the cruise business, it must modernize its ports and expand other ports in the coming years.

In Tercek's speech, he indicated the Greek cruise destinations that can best attract the interest of cruise companies are Piraeus, Santorini, Heraklion, Chania, Corfu and Katakolon, but others, such as Rhodes and Mykonos need more modern infrastructure to support the growing demaind.

Global competition for cruise ships is on the rise and Tercek noted that Australia's cruise tourism has increased by 77% over the last 10 years and that demand is still increasing.  Greece will close 2014 with about 2.5 million cruise visitors but that is still less than Italy and Spain.  Tercek believes the big disadvantage for Greece is most cruises do not home port from there. Last year only 212,000 passengers departed from Greek ports whereas 2 million left from Italy.