MSC shipping companies, Costa Cruceros, Royal Caribbean, Carnival (Aida) y TUI Cruises, given the position of the Spanish Government not to allow stopovers from international ports, have chosen to divert the calls they had programmed in the ports of the Balearic Islands, mainly in Palma, to Turkey, Greece, Egypt and Israel, as announced by the director in Spain of the International Cruise Lines Association (CLIA), Alfredo Serrano.
«There is a kind of bleeding of ships that cannot come to the Balearic Islands and other Spanish destinations and the shipping companies, consequently, have made the decision to go sailing to the Eastern mediterranean. So much so that they have created new cruise routes, including Israel-Cyprus-Greece and Red Sea cruises. Turkey will be the other major beneficiary destination, “he added.
The employer CLIA Spain asks the central government to authorize cruise trips between Spanish ports. Serrano indicates that “in the Canary Islands they have been carried out since last November” and now there are communities that want to do the same, in the case of Andalusia and Murcia. He affirms that shipping companies «hope that the Balearic Islands also enter into this dynamic, since they strictly comply with all the protocols and it is not logical to continue as if we were in March 2020. Now, there are guidelines set by the European Comission to reactivate cruise tourism safely.
The Carnival shipping company, owner of Aida Cruises, in view of the current situation, has decided to postpone the start of its stops in Palma until June, with the consequent negative impact on the entire offer of taxis, tourist discretionary transport, commerce, restaurants and complementary offer in Palma and the Island.
Port of Palma
The Balearic Port Authority (APB), for its part, announced this Monday that the joint venture GPO-TYPSA Dique del Oeste has been awarded the drafting of the basic project, the construction projects and the corresponding environmental processing of the new berths and esplanades for ferry traffic in the West Dike of the port of Palma for 1.65 million.
Currently, the ferries that operate in the port of Palma do so at the Poniente, Comerciales and Dique del Oeste docks. The goal is to reorder this traffic and put it in one place in the port.