Not the first time, three passenger vessels are currently visiting the Port of Koper; however, today two of the world’s largest cruise ships - which have thus far never been together in Koper - have brought the one hundred thousandth visitor to our city, which is a new record for Luka Koper's Passenger Terminal.
This year Royal Caribbean International’’s Voyager of the Seas, with some 3,150 passenger on board, has become a regular Sunday guest, as has Arion,which, over the course of several seasons, has become a frequent caller at Koper. The third vessel - Norwegian Jade - operated by Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) has a little under 2,300 passengers aboard.Norwegian Jade is a sister ship of last year's visitor Norwegian Gem; she is 294 m long, and has a registered tonnage of 93,500 GRT.
The run up to the season witnessed prolonged dredging operations to facilitate the arrival of such large vessels at Koper’s Passenger Terminal. Indeed, without the 1.6 million euro investment, they would be unable to berth in the close proximity of the old town centre.
This year, sixty-nine passenger vessels have called at the Port of Koper, and another eight are expected prior to the end of the season. Some 110,000 passengers are anticipated by year’s end; last year, their total number was a bit above 37,000.
According to annual research undertaken by the European Cruise Council, the average capita expenditure per port of call amounts to about 60 euros per passenger. This figure encompasses the dues paid by vessel operators and the expenditure of passengers on excursions as well as in local shops and restaurants. On the basis of this data it can be calculated that this business generated some 6.6 million euros in revenues for Slovenia this year.
Such a successful season is not anticipated next year; on the basis of announcements to date, Koper and Slovenia will be visited by about 70,000 passengers, which is 35 percent down on this year, but still twice as many as in 2010. Royal Caribbean claims to be very pleased with Slovenia as a destination, and wants to enhance collaboration in the future, but the Voyager of the Seas shall not be returning next year as she is being transferred to services in Southeast Asia and Australia.