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Cruises: the Marseille harbor “is going to beat records in 2015”

11% increase between 2013 and 2014


Rédigé par Pierre Coronas translated by Joséphine Foucher le Vendredi 21 Novembre 2014

With 1,315 million passengers, the cruise trafic in Marseille has progressed by 11% at the end of 2014 compared to 2013. The Club de la Croisière is expecting a similar growth in 2015 and aims to reach the 2 million mark of cruise goers annually.



In 15 years, Marseille has imposed itself as an essential port for cruising companies that operate in France.

This is mostly due to the action of the Marseille Provence Cruising Club that unites numerous local economic actors, that the city conquered on the market.

In turn, becoming today a true influencer in France, Europe and the Mediterranean.

In 1997, Marseille totaled 66,000 cruise goers (14,000 in frontline and 52,000 in transit.) 2014 should end with 1,315,000 passengers (+11% vs 2013), including 450,000 in front line. Meaning that trafic has been multiplied by almost 20 in Marseille.

“We have crossed a very important line, rejoices Dominique Vlasto, deputy Mayor of Marseille in charge of tourism. This was a collaborative effort with all local economic partners, the city hall, and shipowners.”

For Jacques Truau, President of the Marseille Provence Cruise Club, it is particularly the increase of 25% between 2013 and 2014 in the number of travelers at the frontline that is important. They boarded one of the 356 ships that departed from the port this year.

During peak times in 2014, the President of Cruise Club mentions the first time the Liberty of the Seas (Royal Caribbean International) docked, the inauguration of the Diadema (Costa Croisières) and that of Armonia (MSC Croisières) scheduled on Thursday, November 20th, 2014.

With 174,000 passengers, a new monthly trafic record was beat on October 2014.

“It’s huge, exclaims Jacques Truau. The previous record was around 130,000. We’re expecting 140,000 cruises goers for November 2014.”

1.4 million passengers expected in 2015

From left to right: Franck Recoing, vice-President of CCIMP, Dominique Vlasto, deputy mayor of Marseille in charge of Tourism, and Jacques Truau, President of Marseille Provence Cruise Club - Photo P.C.
From left to right: Franck Recoing, vice-President of CCIMP, Dominique Vlasto, deputy mayor of Marseille in charge of Tourism, and Jacques Truau, President of Marseille Provence Cruise Club - Photo P.C.
And the current momentum should keep on until 2015 since MPCT (Marseille Provence Cruise Terminal) has, since June 2014, a third terminal (Terminal B.) It is now able to welcome 7 ships simultaneously and provide of capacity of 1000 parking spaces for travelers.

“We are going to beat records once more in 2015,” warns the President of Cruise Club.

According to projections published on November 14, 2014, more than 1.4 million passengers, including 490,000 in frontline, are expected in Marseille next year. There should be 190,000 more just in the month of October 2015.

During the next session, Princess Cruises, will make its comeback in the city. The company scheduled 12 stops for the whole year.

In April 2015, the Form 10 of ship repair, currently being renovated, will reopen. “We will then have the capacity of welcoming the world’s largest cruise ships on dry docks” explains Jacques Truau.

Dominique Vlasto estimates that “all that’s now left to do is make cruising more known to French travelers. The market’s potential is huge.”

A potential that is beneficial to “the whole country, not only Marseille,” adds Franck Recoing, Vice-President of CCI Marseille Provence.

Each cruise goers spends, on average, €148. Which amounted to 160 million euros in revenues for 2013 and a total of 1.2 billion euros with 9 million passengers since 1996.

With a budget of 35 million euros, voted in to broaden the seawall of the Great Maritime Port of Marseille (GPMM) and make docking more convenient for ships, it is now the annual 2 million cruise goer mark that the Marseille Provence Cruise Club is hoping for.

“I think that we will reach it very fast,” plans Franck Recoing.

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