Just before the official beginning of cruise season here in the Southern Cone, we explained how the season just keeps getting longer in Argentina and Uruguay.
What used to be a tight two-month window with only a few vessels has suddenly blossomed into a seven-month engagement with hundreds of ships and thousands of visitors from as far away as the U.S., Europe and even Japan.
Now it appears Argentina cruise season may soon become a 365-day phenomenon extending into the cooler months here in the Southern Cone. According to Cronista, the Argentina Ports Authority and Transportation Secretary are proposing steep 15 to 20% discounts for any cruise ship that docks in the new Port of Buenos Aires between the months of April (late autumn) and November (mid-spring).
“We want cruise ships coming to Argentina year-round,” said Transportation Secretary Juan Pablo Schiavi adding, “The objective is to offer discounts of 15-20% on all fees and services so that cruise operators will begin coming to Argentina in the winter, so more tourists will discover our country.” Gustavo Figuerola of Rio de la Plata Terminals confirmed, “Buenos Aires today has the best port facility in Latin America in terms of size, facilities and location within the City of Buenos Aires.
The incentive proposal coincides with an important announcement made yesterday by Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. Beginning in 2012, RCL has committed to five cruise ships docking in Buenos Aires outside of high season, the first such arrivals in history which speaks volumes to the explosion of international demand for Argentina as a year-round tourist destination. (Full Story in Spanish)