Cruise tourism in Oman rises 4.6 percent

Published on : Tuesday, February 4, 2020

As per the data published by Oman’s Ministry of Tourism, the rise in cruise tourism is attributed to the relevant initiatives of the government including developments in infrastructure and the continuing and reinforced tourism campaigns that mainly aims on the civilization, culture, heritage, diverse adventures, and popular attractions in Oman.

The Ministry mentioned that a total of 284 cruise ships, which will carry thousands of world tourists are scheduled already to anchor at the three main ports in sultanate in season 2019/2020, namely Sultan Qaboos Port (162 cruise ships); Port of Khasab (75 cruise ships); and Port of Salalah (47 cruise ships). During the winters, the highest arrivals are hoped that starts in October and ends in April.


The Ministry has been partnering with relevant government and private sector entities and ship owners and operators to improve Oman’s cruise tourism sector along with helping in developing the ability and efficiency of local ports to manage and maneuver giant cruise ships. Part of the initiatives of the Ministry is to bring in faster license and permit application processes and approvals.


The local cruise industry is key to attract maximum foreign travelers to the sultanate. In general, the national tourism sector plays an integral role in Oman’s financial diversification as well as growth.


To quote Abdullah Saif Al Saadi, head of cruise and charter flights, Ministry of Tourism, “We aim to attract international cruise ships as part of our overall travel and tourism campaigns. To achieve this, we have been improving our ports, implementing the best practices and international standards, and enhancing our facilities, to name a few. We are also planning to invest in the facilities of Sultan Qaboos Port to entice more cruise ships to make a stopover in Oman. Furthermore, we will continue to participate in relevant forums and exhibitions as well as carry out promotional campaigns in collaboration with leading cruise lines. We are happy that our efforts have already been paying off as evident in the rising number of cruise ship tourists who are coming into our shores.”


He further added: “Apart from providing the necessary support to make the sultanate an attractive and major stopover for giant cruise ships, the government has also made the licensing process easy and flexible. We are not stopping there. We have been organising major entertainment activities for tourists arriving on board in cooperation with the local agents. Running traditional souqs to enable our visitors to experience first-hand the Omani traditions is one of these exciting activities.”


“The Ministry of Tourism is doing efforts to attract giant cruise ships in line with our national tourism campaigns. Cruise ships are an essential part of our efforts to promote winter tourism. For a long time, the Ministry has been coordinating with local authorities to ensure that the country’s ports remain capable of meeting the needs of cruise ships of all sizes.”

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