Bergen, Norway, has already confirmed 54 calls by AIDA Cruses for 2015, “despite the 0.1 percent sulfur limit,” according to Cruise Europe.
For 2014 169 calls are booked and for this year 332 are expected, which is 10 up on 2012. “I think we will stay at about 330 calls because we have most of the ships sailing in Northern Europe,” said Helen Hovland, marketing manager Port of Bergen.
Fred Olsen Cruise Lines’ Boudicca is the first to call this year on February 22 with the season closing on October 18 with Cruise & Maritime Voyages’ Marco Polo. There are 10 ships calling Bergen for the first time this year.
The challenge for Bergen, according to Frode Sagmo, port operations manager, is the increasing size of the ships. He pointed out that Bergen and other Norwegian ports still have the same piers when ships were smaller.
This year there will be 180 calls from vessels of more than 80,000 tons and 150 from ships of more than 250m in length and with a draft of more than 8 meters. “The pier is beginning to be too small when you consider all the tour buses,” Sagmo commented.
One day last summer there were six cruise ships, in port 25 supply vessels and a fast ferry as well as ordinary cargo vessels. Even with six kilometers of pier space, supply vessels had to be moved into the fjord for the day to make way for an arriving cruise ship.