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Galveston Looking Into a Third Cruise Terminal

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In seafaring terms, it’s a shot across the bow.

When the Bayport Cruise Terminal was first built, it stayed practically empty for several years. However, in late 2013 Princess Cruise Lines begin sailing from the port. Later this year, Norwegian will offer cruises from the Bayport Terminal as well.

The cruise lines’ decision to sail from Bayport comes at the expense of the Galveston port. In fact, Princess decided to move from Galveston to Bayport because it wasn’t able to use the port on its preferred dates since Carnival and Royal Caribbean had priority.

Now the Port of Galveston is fighting back.

According to The Galveston Daily News, the Port of Galveston has approved spending $100,000 on design plans for a third cruise terminal.

Here’s the issue — cruise passengers overwhelmingly like sailing on weekend days. Therefore, cruise lines are eager to offer weekend departure and return dates. But with two Carnival ships and one Royal Caribbean ship calling Galveston home, it doesn’t leave much room for other cruise lines (or more ships) to also sail on the weekend.

This seems to be the reason Galveston lost Princess Cruise Lines.

But with a third port, the number of open berths would be upped by 50%. Not only would that help keep current cruise lines happy, it would likely attract more ships.

The planning is still in the early stages, but this is clearly a big step by Galveston to show how serious they are about being the cruise port on the Gulf Coast.

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