Massport, Elected Officials, Tourism Partners Celebrate the Return of Cruising in Boston. First full season in two years with new ships and itineraries

Today, the Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport), local elected officials and leaders of the state and region tourism bureaus celebrated the start of the 2022 Cruise Season in Boston, the first full season in two years.

The return of cruising to Flynn Cruiseport Boston supports the tourism recovery for the City of Boston and the Commonwealth, generating $135.5 million in annual economic impact and supports 2,200 jobs. The facility was renamed Flynn Cruiseport Boston in 2017 in honor of former Mayor of Boston and United States Ambassador to the Vatican Ray Flynn.

Massport will welcome 125 ships from 19 cruise lines supporting the local travel and tourism industries. The season includes established routes to Bermuda and Canada/ New England, as well as new ships and itineraries as the cruise lines look to attract new audiences to cruising. The Cruiseport will welcome 12 maiden calls, and for the first time, will have four cruise lines offering five homeport ships and voyages:

Norwegian Cruise Line: Norwegian Pearl starts April 4th
Holland America: Zaandam starts May 15th and Nieuw Statendam starts August 3rd
Celebrity Cruises: Celebrity Summit starts August 31st
Royal Caribbean International: Voyager of the Seas starts September 18th

“Cruising plays an important role in the visitor economy and we are delighted to welcome our cruise partners back to Boston to support the recovery of travel and tourism for the city and the Commonwealth,” said Massport CEO Lisa Wieland.

Congressman Stephen F. Lynch, who represents the MA 8th Congressional District including South Boston, was honored with this year’s Maritime Champion award. Congressman Lynch, a former iron worker was part of crew that installed the cranes at Conley Terminal more than 30 years ago. Congressman Lynch has been a steadfast partner to the working port and Massport, helping the Authority secure federal funding for the Boston Harbor Dredging project, which benefits all ships navigating Boston Harbor and allows the port to remain competitive. Congressman Lynch has also supported major improvements at Conley Terminal, enhancements at Flynn Cruiseport Boston, and the growth of seafood processing in South Boston.

“It’s an honor to receive Massport’s second Maritime Champion award,” said U.S. Rep. Stephen F. Lynch. “Both my grandfathers worked in the Port of Boston, so when I ended up working at Conley Terminal, it seemed like a family tradition. Over the years, I’ve witnessed firsthand Massport’s efforts to make the Port of Boston more efficient and more attractive to new businesses. And it has been a pleasure for me to work with Lisa Wieland—she has been a maritime champion in her own right. I am grateful for this award, and I look forward to continuing to work on behalf of our longshoremen, fishermen, shipfitters, masters, mates, and pilots, and all the import/export businesses that rely upon Massport and the Port of Boston.”

Flynn Cruiseport Boston served a record 402,346 passengers on 138 ships in 2019. Generating more than $130 million and supporting more than 2,000 jobs annually, cruising supports hundreds of businesses large and small throughout the region, from transportation providers and restaurants, to tourist attractions, airlines and hotels, souvenir shops, and provisioning companies that supply the ship. In regard to shore excursions, cruise lines have traditionally focused on main tourist attractions, giving Boston high passenger reviews.

More recently, cruise line shore excursion teams are looking to expand their offerings to include more culturally-diverse experiences and destinations, unique and curated attractions, and opportunities to welcome demographics of all ages from Millennials to baby boomers.

“The economic impact of cruising is critical to the overall vitality of the visitor economy,” said Martha Sheridan, President and CEO of the Greater Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau. “The influx of cruise passengers and the injection of their spending during the summer months – and also through our shoulder seasons – creates a consistent flow of visitors that our destination depends on. This market segment was sorely missed during the pandemic and we are thrilled to see cruising return to Boston!”

Boston is well-known in the cruise industry for having one of the best airport-to-cruiseport proximities in the U.S. The Cruiseport will serve several new itineraries that either start or end in Boston throughout the 2022 season. In October, Celebrity Summit is offering a 12-day one-way cruise from Boston to the Caribbean and ending in Miami, FL. Vantage Cruise Line’s Ocean Explorer will depart Boston on Oct 29th for a 10-day cruise along the East Coast and ending in Nassau, Bahamas. Royal Caribbean’s Voyager of the Seas is offering a 14-day “Arctic Crossing” cruise that starts in Copenhagen, Denmark and ends in Boston on September 18th.

“The revitalized, expansive cruise ship season will have a viable economic impact on tourism destinations all across the Commonwealth, as intrepid travelers stepping off in Boston realize what cultural, culinary and scenic treasures await them here in the Bay State,” said Executive Director Keiko Matsudo Orrall of the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism. “Flynn Cruiseport is fast becoming a gateway for new visitor adventures in Massachusetts and New England.”

“Every time a ship visits Boston as a port of call, the passengers and crew are supporting local businesses and jobs,” said State Senator Nick Collins. “The Flynn Cruiseport is more than just a stop or a starting point for a cruise – it is an economic engine that provides significant employment opportunities for the people of South Boston and beyond.”

The Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport) owns and operates Boston Logan International Airport, public terminals in the Port of Boston, Hanscom Field and Worcester Regional Airport.