Higher fuel taxes plus high port pilot- and security fees in Oslo have resulted in a marked decline in the number of cruiseships visiting the Norwegian capital this summer. Many of the ships coming, though, are larger, offsetting the decline in cruise passengers.
Newspaper Aftenposten reported that 105 ships with 205,000 passengers on board will call at Oslo this year. That’s down from 130 ships last year that carried 235,509 passengers.
It’s also a far cry from the 173 cruiseships that docked in Oslo in 2011, when nearly 313,000 passengers arrived on them. With each cruise passenger estimated to spend NOK 860 while in Oslo, the economic loss is believed to be around NOK 92 million.
Not everyone is unhappy, though. Cruise passengers actually spend little in comparison to tourists who spend the night in hotels and eat in local restaurants. Locals have also complained that the enormous cruiseships block the view of Oslo’s historic Akershus Fortress and Castle while tied up adjacent to it.
Local museums, however, miss the influx of cruise tourists, as do the packaged bus tours that cart them around the city. Oslo can accommodate four cruiseships a day, but this year there are only be two days when four cruiseships are actually in port.