Philadelphia’s cruise port will shut down following just two scheduled calls in 2011.
The Delaware River Port Authority voted January 5 to end cruise operations, due to lack of business.
The Port of Philadelphia recorded some 36 calls in 2006, but has been posting lower numbers ever since. One major blow to the port was the departure of Norwegian Cruise Line’s Majesty, which homeported in Philadelphia and was sold to Louis Cruises in 2008.
Also limiting operations in the Philadelphia harbor was a height restriction of 188 feet due to a bridge and a much longer journey to/from the open ocean than other nearby ports.
In 2010, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises and Crystal Cruises both made transit calls in the port.
In 2011, American Cruise Lines has two calls scheduled with its American Spirit, May 14 and May 28, which will be honored.
Officials said that shutting cruise operations would save $627,000 in operating expenses immediately, and also avoid a $18 million terminal renovation bill in the future.