New P&O Cruise Ship Makes Historic Arrival in Antigua

Cruise tourism in Antigua and Barbuda reached new heights on Saturday, January 28, with the arrival of P&O Cruises’ Arvia, the most important cruise vessel to ever homeport within the island nation. The Excel-class ship was greeted with a celebration at Antigua and Barbuda’s new fifth berth because the island and cruise ship ready to embark and disembark 700 friends.

Arvia is at the moment crusing her maiden Caribbean voyage. The LNG-powered cruise ship set sail on her maiden voyage on December 23, and has since crossed the Atlantic Ocean to the Caribbean, homeporting in each Barbados and Antigua this winter.

Arvia Makes Maiden Homeport Name to Antigua

Arvia arrived in St. John, Antigua, on Saturday for the maiden homeport name for the brand-new 180,000 gross tons Excel-class cruise ship. P&O Cruises is a British cruise line that operates beneath the Carnival Company umbrella. Sister ships to Arvia embody Carnival Cruise Line’s Mardi Gras, Carnival Celebration, in addition to Costa Toscana, and extra.

As a part of the preparations for the Arvia‘s historic go to, Antigua Cruise Port arrange a short lived tent geared up with all the things wanted to make the primary homeport name successful.

Picture Credit score: Antigua Cruise Port

Dona Regis-Prosper, the Normal Supervisor of the Antigua Cruise Port, expressed her satisfaction within the work executed earlier than welcoming Arvia, saying: 

“We’ve got put in a short lived marquee terminal geared up with check-in counters, customs clearance and immigration inspection areas, baggage scanners, and an environment friendly passenger move system to make sure a seamless operation. We stay up for welcoming homeporting and transit friends to Antigua.”

The 700 friends who arrived in Antigua to embark on Arvia have been met with a seamless course of. The friends may examine in, clear customs and immigration, and have their baggage scanned in document time.

Equally, the 700 friends who disembarked the Arvia have been bussed to the airport to await constitution flights again to the UK. The sleek operation was made potential by the trouble put in by Antigua Cruise Port, the Ministry of Tourism, and the Airport Authority. 

Minister of Tourism, Charles Fernandez, praised the work executed to arrange for the day, saying: “I need to congratulate International Ports Holding for placing this collectively. I additionally thank the members of the Ministry of Tourism and the Airport Authority; they’ve executed an amazing job working with us.”

A Heat Welcome From the Individuals of Antigua

Arvia is the most recent vessel in P&O Cruise Traces’ fleet and has a capability of 5,200 friends and 1,800 crew members. It’s the first of 4 massive cruise vessels anticipated to be homeported on the island all year long.

Arvia in Antigua
Arvia in Antigua (Picture Credit score: Antigua Cruise Port)

Captain Paul Brown spoke in regards to the huge enhancements he has seen through the years but in addition mentioned there was one fixed all through that point: 

“I got here to Antigua earlier than Heritage Quay was constructed, earlier than the Nevis Pier, earlier than all of the works within the channel and this fifth pier. I’ve seen many modifications, however one factor has all the time remained fixed, and that’s the heat welcome we all the time obtain from the folks.”

Arvia will sail from Antigua on seven-night cruises that conclude in Barbados or 14-night cruises returning to Antigua. The cruises will take passengers to a number of the most breathtaking locations within the Caribbean, together with Tortola, La Romana, St. Maarten, St. Kitts, Martinique, Castries, and St Lucia, amongst others.

A Shiny Future for Cruise Tourism in Antigua

Arvia‘s turn-around operation will as soon as once more happen on February 11 and 25 and on March 11. 

The power to homeport in Antigua is because of the building of a brand new pier, which was finalized in November 2022 and is a part of an $80 million settlement signed in 2019 between International Ports Holding and the federal government of Antigua and Barbuda to redevelop the cruise advanced. The pier can deal with even the Oasis class cruise ships from Royal Caribbean.

Pre-pandemic, Antigua dealt with about 800,000 passengers yearly. With the port’s redevelopment, the vacation spot will be capable of function many as 1 million cruise guests a 12 months.

P&O Arvia in Antigua

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