Hamburg is Germany's leading port for cruise ships. The expectation is that ever bigger floating hotels will be making the Elbe River a port of call. To meet this growing demand there is a third terminal.
January saw the topping-out celebrations and now the third terminal for cruise ships is to be put into operation. On Tuesday June 9, the Kronprinzkai quay is to be officially opened. When ships dock it is expected that as many as 8,000 passengers will be able disembark and board at this terminal - via separate areas for arrivals and departures. There are other cruise ship terminals in the Hafencity and Altona districts.
In the past, if several cruise ships came to port it created a bottle-neck. Now the city has opened a greater market potential, head of Hamburg Tourist office Dietrich von Albedyll said. Some 64 million euros (71.5 million US dollars) were invested in the terminal. Cruise ship tourism is currently booming. 2014 some 1.77 million people headed to the high seas from Germany alone. Michael Ungerer, German head of the Cruise Line Association CLIA, says the market expects to crack the two million mark by 2016.
This year the terminals in Hamburg are expected to have 160 cruise ships dock and some 525,000 passengers processed in arrivals and departures. 2014 was a record year with 189 liners docking bringing some 589,000 passengers. In northern Europe Hamburg is ranked third after the ports of Southampton in Great Britain and Copenhagen in Denmark. Environmentalists though criticize the high air pollution caused by cruise liners when they are in ports.