The National Statistics Office said that in March 2012 six cruise liner visited Malta, carrying 6,756 passengers on board, a drop of 23 per cent compared to the corresponding month last year.
The absolute majority of cruise passengers were in transit (6,718), while a negligible amount (38 passengers) were either embarking from or landing in Malta. Most cruise liner passengers fell in the 60-79 age bracket and stood at 2,473. These were followed by the 40-59 age group (1,546).
Furthermore on a gender basis, female passengers outnumbered males and made up 53.8 per cent of the total. The majority of passengers came from EU Member States and stood at 5,072 – a decrease of 12.9 per cent when compared to 2011.
The majority of European passengers came from Germany (1,445) and Spain (1,328), while a substantial decrease was noted in the British market. Cruise passengers from Non-EU countries dropped by 42.1 per cent over the previous year and amounted to 1,684. Almost all main countries registered declines in the number of passengers.
The total cruise passengers for the first quarter stood at 23,460, a marginal drop when compared to 2011 levels. Cruise passengers from EU countries numbered 18,848, or 80.3 per cent of the total. Most EU nationals came from Germany and Italy, amounting to 4,377 and 3,675 respectively. Non-EU passengers stood at 4,612, down by 58.5 per cent over the corresponding period last year. This drop was mainly caused by a decrease of 84.4 per cent in the number of American visitors.
Between January and March there were 12 cruise liner calls – two less when compared with last year. On average, each vessel had 1,955 passengers on board.
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