Every year the cruise industry carries over 10 million travelers to destinations near and far. It is no secret that many destinations have come to rely on cruise companies calling on their ports as an integral part of their local economic infrastructures. So when cruising came to a sudden halt in March, many of these destinations began to feel the economic pinch. But how much will the cruise shutdown cost the global economy?
The Cruise Line Industry Association (CLIA) estimates that keeping global cruise traffic paused until the end of July could cost the world up to $50 billion in economic activity and a total of 334,000 jobs. CLIA is the cruise industry's main lobbying and advocacy organization and has a vested interest in painting dire consequences should the industry not return to operations as soon as possible. But when taking all of the ancillary travel industries which work in conjunction with cruising into account, it is clear that the halt in cruising will have a significant economic toll.
TravelWeekly.com reports that, according to CLIA, the state of Florida loses as many as 240 jobs every day that the cruise prohibition continues. And considering the fact that cruising contributes $8.5 billion in annual spending to the state, no cruises means significant lost revenue for the Sunshine State.
Another area which could be significantly affected by the cruise prohibition is Juneau, Alaska. The TravelWeekly.com report says that 20% of Juneau's annual sales tax comes from cruise tourism. Ketchikan, Alaska also stands to see a significant financial hit as it also receives significant revenues from the cruise industry.
As countries and localities continue to evaluate their stance toward cruise ships calling on their ports, some have instituted cruise bands extending into the late summer and fall. But, likely due to economic it, other areas such as the Bahamas, Mexico, and Grand Cayman, are set to set cruise passengers as soon as they begin to arrive again.