Rebeca Duran

Rebeca Duran

Staff Writer
The Brazil Business


Cruise Ship Industry in Brazil

Rebeca Duran

Rebeca Duran

Staff Writer
The Brazil Business


For two years Brazil has occupied an important position on the map of the cruise ship market internationally. This article explains why this activity is so intense in the country and what possibilities the market offers.

The birth of the cruise ship industry was in the early 1960s. It started to take off from the 1970s to the 1990s which were periods of moderate growth. With the arrival of this method of travel to Europe, Asia and Oceania, the period of cruise ships expansion began. In Brazil, the cruise ship industry only truly began in 1997.

In the summer season of 1999 to 2000, the entrance of the ship Splendor of the Seas, as well as, Costa Cruises, MSC, CVC and the input of several other shipowners in the Brazilian market have combined to set up a new type of tourism in Brazil.

Since then, the market has shown great expansion in the country. The luxury, entertaining, comfort and the possibility of visiting beautiful destinations without having to deal with suitcases, airports, trains and roads are just a few aspects that make cruise ships so attractive for tourists.

The Brazilian Cruise Ship Sector

Nowadays, the cruise ship industry is the segment with the fastest growth in the world. In Brazil, this sector could become a powerful way to consolidate and expand the domestic tourism and expand the Brazilian tourism image internationally. The main reason for that is: the Brazilian coastline provides favorable conditions for navigationpractically during the whole year, .

Brazil presents a vast coastline, with more than 7 million kilometers. Tropical weather and the diversity of natural resources make the cruise ship industry a very favorable area for investments. The country is fifth in terms of transporting tourists on cruise ships worldwide.

First on the ranking is the United States which in 2011 transported 10 million tourists. United Kingdom is next with 1.5 million, followed by Germany with 1.2 million, and Italy, with 889,000 tourists transported. The data is provided by Cruise Lines International Association (Clia) and was disseminated by the Brazilian Association of Martime Cruises – most known as Abremar.

Economic Growth in the Recent Years

According to Abremar, in 2011/2012 season more than 900,000 passengers were transported along the Brazilian coast, the best result registered of all time. These numbers show that, despite the favorable placement, Brazil is capable of further growth in this segment.

For the association, what justifies such great number is the income increase of the Brazilian lower socio-economic demographics, which made up a large amount of people with financial resources to travel. The ship cruises tourism registered 1.4 billion BRL impact in the Brazilian economy in the 2011/2012 season.

Income (in Minimum Salaries) Urban Population Tourists
From 1 to 4 Minimum Salaries 79,316,225 16,950,003
From 4 to 15 Minimum Salaries 45,690,881 20,335,553
Up to 15 Minimum Salaries 7,712,007 5,524,820
Total 132,719,113 42,810,376

Most Searched Destinations

A survey developed by the website indicated the ten preferred destinations for Brazilians to enjoy a trip on a cruise ship in South America. On the lists are destinations in Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina.

Punta del Este, in Uruguay, is ranked third, while Buenos Aires leads the ranking and Rio de Janeiro is second. Other unexplored destinations, mainly with beaches like Ilha Bela, in the coast of São Paulo, are also on the list: Buzios, Angra dos Reis, Montevideo, Ilha Grande, Porto Belo and Salvador.

A Unique Type of Cruise

The Amazon basin is also good option for those looking for a different cruise ship destination in Brazil. Unlike most of cruises, which only navigate in the country between November and April, the trips across the river can be done at any time of the year, with travel options of three, four and seven nights aboard on the Grand Amazon, a hotel ship from Iberostar.

The Grand Amazon has 73 cabins and offers attractions and luxury to its passengers. All services, attractions and tours aboard are within the package price of the trip. The cruises of three nights at River Solimões and the River Negro for four nights have daily rates from 660 BRL per person plus taxes . The price is valid until January 3, 2014.

Expectations for the Summer Season 2013 to 2014

For the 2013/2014 season it is expected that at least 668,000 passengers will enjoy the 242 travel options offered by the 12 transatlantic ships that will be navigating on the coast of Brazil. The season begins in November 2013 and ends in April 2014.

Among the ships that will anchor at Brazilian ports in the coming months are:

  • Costa Fascinosa
  • Costa Favolosa
  • MSC Preziosa
  • MSC Poesia
  • MSC Orchestra
  • MSC Magnifica
  • Grand Celebration
  • Grand Mistral
  • Splendor of the Seas
  • Pullmantur Sovereign
  • Pullmantur Zenith
  • Pullmantur Empress
  • Louis and Aura.

The archipelago of Fernando de Noronha again receive Louis Aura, which has capacity for 700 passengers. There are 21 predicted stop overs on the island, with cruises departing from Recife, Natal, Fortaleza and João Pessoa. The tours will last from two to seven nights.