Spending in the U.S. by cruise lines, their passengers, and their crew members totaled $18.9 billion during 2011, according to the study. Cruise industry employment grew to 350,000 jobs that paid $16.5 billion in wages to U.S. workers. Those wages and salaries showed an encouraging year-over-year increase of 8.3 percent, too.
While approximately 80 percent of the economic boost provided by the cruise industry is concentrated in ten states – most of them, not surprisingly, along the coasts – the study said the economies of all 50 states benefit in some way from the North American cruise industry. Florida’s economy gained the most during 2011: the state received nearly 9 million visits from cruise passengers and crew members, with direct spending of $6.7 billion. Other states that benefit most from cruise industry spending include California, New York, Texas and Alaska.
The positive economic effect of the cruise industry was also felt in Canada. According to the Atlantic Canada Cruise Association (ACCA), the cruise industry provided more than $82 million in direct economic impact to the region during 2011, with more gains projected for 2012. The ACCA estimated direct spending by passengers and crew members in 2011 at $42 million.
The CLIA report also confirmed that the U.S. is the driver of the cruise industry not only in North America, but worldwide. Americans accounted for 63.5 percent of the 16.5 million cruise passengers around the globe during 2011. U.S. ports also handle 60 percent of all global cruise embarkations.
So, for the benefit of vacationers and economies everywhere, cruise on! Talk with Anita, your Cruise Holidays personal cruise expert soon to make arrangements for your next cruise vacation.
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