British Columbia

Cruise ship season is here in Vancouver: 13K passengers expected today

Today is expected to be the first of three busy days around Canada Place because large cruise ships are arriving, bringing with them more than 13k passengers.

Port estimates 2M in economic activity generated from each ship

Two of the three large cruise ships docking at Canada Place today. (Jacy Schindel/CBC)

Today is expected to be the first of three busy days around Canada Place because three large cruise ships are arriving, bringing with them more than 13,000 passengers.

"Typically this happens at the beginning and the end of the season, when the ships are either coming in to the Alaska market from their winter market or leaving the Alaska market at the end of the season, typically around September or so," said Carmen Ortega with the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority.

A total of eight cruise ships are scheduled to stop at Canada Place by Sunday.

Next week traffic will be even busier with 13 ships scheduled to dock there.

Ortega says cruise-goers are advised to make transportation arrangements ahead of time because of the increased demand for taxis and public transportation.

By noon taxi lineups outside Canada Place were long.

"It's a little frustrating," said Toni Lynn Meek, who is visiting from California.

But Scotland tourist Bob McLaren told CBC News he didn't mind waiting in line.

'We always seem to choose the busy cruise day, we never choose a quiet day," he said.

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authourity estimates every cruise ship that docks in Vancouver generates $2 million in economic activity.

"Passengers spend on average two and a half nights at local hotels," said Ortega." They spend money on shore excursions, trips, eating out."

Vancouver expects to welcome 829,000 cruise ship passengers this year, a three per cent increase over last year.

With files from Anita Bathe and Brenna Rose

now