CRUISE sector professionals are hopeful that the sector will resume activity towards the end of March.
The last cruise ship that sailed into the port of Malaga was last March 14.
Since then these passenger vessels have remained off limits in Malaga water, with professionals in the sector eagerly waiting for the day that brings an end to the cruise shutdown.
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The annual schedule for the 2021 stopovers was, in most cases, established before the start of the pandemic, however the current health situation and its future evolution leave the vast majority of these docks out of bounds.
Visits not confirmed by the shipping companies increase uncertainty about when the sector will resume business.
Most shipping agencies that manage stops in Malaga waters suggest that cruise ships may start arriving at the end of March or the beginning of April.
What is clear is that all tourist ships docking at Malaga port will be immersed in new sanitary safety measures established by all shipping companies in the sector.
These extra safety protocols include reduction of up to 60% in passenger capacity, masks, ventilation, filters, safety distance, cleaning, bubble excursions and isolation and evacuation programmes in case of suspect coronavirus cases.
Looking forward, provided there is no major pandemic upturns and that the Spanish government releases the ban that currently exists on this traffic, cruise ships will return to Malaga waters in Spring,
Professionals in the sector are optimistic that, if all goes well, traffic could reach maximum activity peaks during the last quarter of next year.