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More than 50% of cruise visitors to Maine are first-time visitors
13 August 2019

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American Lines cruise ship American Glory

A survey of cruise visitors to Maine - commissioned by CruiseMaine and the Maine Office of Tourism and conducted at 9 Maine ports between July and November 2018 - found:

  • 54% of cruise visitors (passengers and crew) were first-time visitors to Maine.
  • 66% of passengers were traveling as a couple, 17% with family, 13% with friends.
  • One-third said they plan to return to Maine via cruise or otherwise.
  • 80% said they were "highly satisfied" with their time spent ashore in Maine.
  • 80% said they are "highly likely" to recommend a trip to Maine, based on their time spent on shore.
  • At least 80% said they found the ports they visited "unspoiled" and "welcoming".
  • Typical cruise visitor spent 4.1 hour in each port town visited - but 92% left the ship in only one Maine town.
  • 90% go sightseeing or touring while ashore, 74% by walking.
  • 47% go shopping.
  • 79% got their information about Maine ports from the cruise line - only 17% from the Internet, 3% from social media.
  • Average cruise visitor spent about $70 per shore visit.
  • 400,000 2018 cruise visitors put $33M into the Maine economy.

Demographics of 2018 cruise visitors:

  • Mean age 62
  • Mean household income $104K
  • 60% women
  • 76% college-educated
  • 81% married or living with partner
  • 75% Americans
    • South 35%
    • Northeast 29%
    • West 21%
    • Midwest 16%
  • 12% Canadians
  • 13% from overseas:
    • UK 44%
    • Australia 11%
    • Germany 10%


So, actionable items for Maine tourism industry:

  • Getting first-time visitors is great - that seems to be Maine's hardest nut to crack. Help cruise lines keep doing that.
  • Get more information on Maine ports and cruises onto the Internet where people of these demographics (above) hang out.
  • Ports need to create more reasons for passengers - especially younger passengers - to disembark, tour, shop, meet locals.

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