As if Shanghai taxi drivers didn’t already have enough foolish foreigners to rip off, soon the most gullible of all tourists, cruise passengers, will be arriving. By the end of this year, a brand new cruise terminal will be opening at the northern end of the Bund. The US$260 million dollar site has been under construction since 2004 and is expected to hold up to three luxury cruise liners.
Around 1 million tourists per year will flow through the new port, although that number will probably hover around 500,000 for the first few years after opening. Large cruise companies are taking notice of the increased interest in Asian travel recently and are hoping that the new Shanghai terminal will spark interest in Asian intineraries. The cruise industry has had several incidents over the past few years and maybe these new offering will rejuvenate the industry.
Already Royal Carribean, the world’s second largest cruise line, has signed up for their maiden voyage in Asia for April 2008. What does this mean for Shanghai, other than longer lines at the Jinmao tower? We hope a new and improved fake market close to the Bund! At the very least, the port will be another feather in Shanghai’s already feathered 2010 World Expo cap. Take that Zaragoza 2008!
Photo from www.all-cruise-lines.com