Mahón port, Minorca. | Gemma Andreu

More than 24 cruise ships are scheduled to dock in Palma port this month, bringing 30,000 passengers to the Balearic capital, according to Beatriz Orejudo, President of the Commission of Consignees of the Provincial Association of Entrepreneurs of Maritime Activities of the Balearic Islands or APEAM.

"Every week the scales increase when the cruise schedule is confirmed for ‘Aida’, ’Mein Schiff’, ‘Costa’, ‘MS Europa’, 'Marella’, 'Windsurf' and ‘Harmony’ and they willl be joined by other vessels in September.”

APEAM says 27 cruise ships are already scheduled to visit Palma in September.

"There will be a consolidation of this type of maritime traffic in Palma, because a lot of shipping companies have opted to make it a base port," adds Orejudo. ”The stopovers are very short and PCR tests are done before passengers go ashore. Those who are double vaccinated don’t need to have a test."

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Orejudo points out that exhaustive monitoring of passengers is carried out during the entire cruise and that they are also thoroughly checked by Healthcare Professionals on arrival in port.

“Nothing is left to chance and the shipping companies have their own insurance to cover any type of incident or private hospitalisation,” she said.

TUI Cruises, Aida, Costa Cruises, Royal Caribbean, MSC and Hapag Lloyd have already added Palma to their routes, but the Balearic Nautical Sector aims to attract more ships like 'MS Europa’ to Palma. It has capacity for 800 passengers and is much smaller than the cruise ships that operate in Caribbean waters.

Commercial Impact

“The arrival of international cruise ships in Palma has had very little commercial impact, because the health protocols restrict cruise passenger activity, so despite the numbers arriving at port, their visualisation in the city is almost zero.”