Grand Turk, Turks & Caicos Islands (27th September 2023) – The island of Grand Turk proudly unveils its standout cruise tourism numbers for the first six months of 2023. Celebrated for its pristine beaches, profound culture, and exceptional hospitality, Grand Turk solidifies its reputation as a top destination for cruise enthusiasts worldwide.

During the first half of the year, Grand Turk welcomed an impressive 143 ships, reflecting a 10.9% increase from the same timeframe in the previous year. A notable 491,806 cruise passengers set foot on its beautiful shores, marking a significant 51.7% increase in visits.

Highlighted below are standout figures from top source markets for the first six months of 2023:

The United States of America (USA): USA continues to dominate as the principal source market, accounting for an impressive 444,832 cruise arrivals. This statistic marks an extraordinary 90.45 percent surge, compared to the corresponding period in the prior year.

Canada: Canada, a critical source market, recorded 27,228 passengers during the initial half of 2023, reflecting a 5.54 percent rise in cruise arrivals.

The United Kingdom: Contributing to the global influx, this market added 6,873 cruise arrivals, indicating a solid 1.40 percent growth from the previous year.

South America: Witnessing an 11 percent increase in arrivals, South America registered 2,360 cruise guests during the reported period.

The Caribbean: An impressive uptick was observed in the Caribbean market, with a 29 percent growth rate, amounting to 1,466 passengers in the first half of 2023.

Other Regions: Cruise arrivals from other global regions summed up to 9,047, illustrating a steady 1.84 percent rise.

Such diverse growth underlines Grand Turk’s appeal and commitment to attracting and accommodating travelers from different backgrounds and regions.

Further elevating Grand Turk’s stature, two cruise ships made their inaugural stops in Grand Turk: The Carnival Venezia, a Vista-Class cruise ship operated by Carnival Cruise Line on June 23rd, and the exclusive adult-only ship, Scarlet Lady by Virgin Voyages, on August 20th, carrying an enthusiastic group of 2,778 passengers.

Minister of Tourism, Hon. Josephine Connolly, expressed her sentiments: “The growth observed in the early months of 2023 emphasizes the allure of the island of Grand Turk as a prime cruise destination. This achievement mirrors the combined efforts of the devoted community, enterprising businesses, and the entire cruise sector. We are all committed to crafting unforgettable moments for visitors while safeguarding the island’s natural and cultural treasures.”

In a commitment to transparency and continuous engagement with stakeholders, Experience Turks and Caicos has also announced its intention to provide quarterly updates on cruise arrivals. These insights will delve into more than just cruise passenger arrivals.  The quarterly updates will also include data segmented by the number of cruise calls, nationality and cruise lines respectively. This information will also assist the Ministry of Tourism and Experience Turks and Caicos develop tourism strategies to enhance the guest experience for long-lasting positive impacts for the island of Grand Turk, our cruise capital.  Such deliberate strategies aim to maximize the benefits of tourism while preserving the island’s intrinsic values and beauty.

Providing regular updates and data, ensures that all stakeholders are consistently well-informed, laying the groundwork for more cohesive and sustainable advancement in Grand Turk’s cruise tourism industry.