During the first three months of 2022, the number of cruise ship passengers that visited the island of Cozumel exceeded the total number of passengers that visited in 2021.
The Mexican tourism ministry reported that more than 600,000 visitors arrived onboard 346 cruise ships.
Cozumel expects to welcome 962 cruise ships in 2022, which will amount to slightly less than 2 million visitors for 2022.
While it is not as much as the busiest port of call in the world had been seeing before the pandemic, ships are sailing at much lower capacities than in 2019.
The successes do not just apply to Cozumel; Mexico expects to welcome close to 7 million cruise visitors this year, down just 25% from 2019.
Cozumel Fuels Strong Cruise Restart
Cozumel has played a prominent role in the cruise industry as the largest cruise port of call worldwide. It also provides a great view of how the cruise industry is recovering from the Pandemic.
With 604,445 cruise guests arriving on the island in the first quarter of 2022, Cozumel has exceeded the number of passengers arriving during 2021. Keeping in mind that the first cruise ship, Adventure of the Seas, did not arrive until June 16, 2021.
Those guests arrived during 346 cruise ship calls, averaging almost four ships per day docking at the SSA Mexico, Puerta Maya, and Punta Langosta docks.
These calls only represent a small percentage of the total number of ships that will visit Cozumel this year as the port works towards regaining the income that ships generated pre-covid.
During the 2017-2018 cruise season, Cozumel led all Caribbean destinations with income from cruise lines. The port made a total of $474 million throughout the year.
That number does not include the total spend per passenger nor the number of jobs that the visits from cruise ships generate.
With the numbers that have been reported for the first quarter, Cozumel is one of the most important ports in the Caribbean for the cruise industry. One that has shown the return of cruising has been a positive experience in all aspects.
Mexico’s Tourism Industry is Recovering Strongly
The tourism industry in Mexico is seeing a solid recovery. Over the year 2022, the Ministry of Tourism reports it expects to welcome 6,776,000 cruise ship passengers, a massive increase of 385% over 2021 and down only 25.5% over the record-breaking 2019.
While Cozumel and Costa Maya will welcome the most guests, the two ports expect more than 1000 ships and 4 million guests, ports such as Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta, and Cabo San Lucas have been seeing significant increases in arrivals over the last few months.
During 2022, the number of cruise ship visits that have been scheduled in Mexico has already reached 2113.
However, those numbers do come with a downside. Over the last months, several groups have voiced their concerns over plans for a fourth cruise dock in Cozumel, a new cruise dock in neighboring Playa Del Carmen, and the environmental impact that cruise ships can have on the environment.