Ports of Toulon Bay
The Ports of Toulon Bay, the new cruise ships’ Eldorado
The Ports of Toulon Bay are exhibiting at the Seatrade Cruise Global, a major event for the international cruise industry that will take place from 14 to 17 March at Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Representatives of the Ports of Toulon Bay will be present on the French Pavillon, a 150 square meters’ booth, next to other ports and Cruise Clubs leaders on the market: the Marseille Cruise Club, the French Riviera Cruise Club, the Var Provence Cruise Club, the port of Sète, the ports of Ajaccio and Bastia for Corsica Island will be there too, strengthening the presence of Mediterranean ports.
Located in the most beautiful Bay in Europe, the Ports of Toulon Bay, comprising the ports of Toulon and La Seyne-sur-Mer, have encountered a steady increase of traffic during the past four years. 2016 is going to be the year that beat all records: 146 calls are scheduled (a growth of 23% compared to 2015) and among them 16 maiden calls, 25 double calls and 2 triple calls! The Ports of Toulon Bay also comfort their leadership in term of ferry traffic to Corsica, far ahead of Marseille and Nice. In total, they will welcome 312 900 cruise passengers all year long, from January to December.
Moreover, the pattern of the cruise passengers that travel to Toulon/La Seyne-sur-Mer is changing. The passengers have a higher purchasing power than the years before, which impacts the local economy in a good way (purchase of goods, excursions...). The Ports of Toulon Bay arebecoming an attracting destination for upscale companies: among the 16 maiden calls scheduled, the ships Mein Schiff 4 (TUI), Seven Seas Navigator and Seven Seas Explorer (Regent Seven Seas) belong to upscale lines; the Mein Schiff 5 (TUI) and the Viking (Viking Cruises), two brand-new and luxury ships, have also chosen to call at Toulon/La Seyne-sur-Mer.
The Ports of Toulon Bay appear like the new cruise ships’ Eldorado because of their numerous advantages. Located in the most sheltered bay in the Med, Toulon/La Seyne-sur-Mer are protected from prevailing winds and can ensure 100% of berth allocation even in case of bad weather. Also, Toulon/La Seyne-sur-Mer are the most secured ports in Europe thanks to their full ISPS compliance and the presence of the French Navy in the Bay.
The Var Chamber of Commerce and Industry, who manages the Ports of Toulon Bay, conducts a dynamic policy which leads to develop high quality welcome standards. Some services provided in 2015 will be renewed in 2016 like the Cruise friendly Label (a partnership with 91 local shops, restaurants and tourism providers), a shuttle service to ensure a transport connection between Toulon and La Seyne-sur-Mer, or a free Wi-Fi service in the cruise terminals.
Other services are completely new: a parking lot at La Seyne-sur-Mer (only 7 minutes on foot from the cruise terminal); new cultural, sportive or family-oriented shore excursions for an exclusive guest experience; a new alternative at anchor is now available in the Bay by transforming the Palais du Commerce et de la Mer, an ultra-modern conference room, into an ephemeral Cruise Terminal with a Provencal market; at last, a brand-new Cruise Terminal will open in Spring 2016 at La Seyne-sur-Mer.
2016 - What’s new in the Ports of Toulon Bay?
- A brand new terminal will open in Spring, at La Seyne-sur-Mer
In line with its strategy to focus on quality, the Var Chamber of Commerce and Industry plans the delivery of a new cruise terminal in La Seyne-sur-Mer in the first quarter of 2016. This brand new terminal will accommodate ships, passengers and crew under optimized conditions, especially for turn-around operations.
- New excursions are now available in sporting, cultural/historical and gastronomy fields
Discover them in the “New excursions to experience" PDF. Click here to download.
- New alternative at anchor
The Var Chamber of Commerce and Industry came up with an innovative way to welcome the calls at anchor. It decided to transform the Palais du Commerce et de la Mer (PCM), a spacious conference hall, into a temporary cruise terminal with a Provencal market. The Mein Schiff 2 experienced this kind of call last summer, and it was such that the ship renewed it in September.
- Renewal of the quality label “Cruise Friendly”
“Always friendly” could be the tagline of the Ports of Toulon Bay; to follow up this course of action, its Marketing and Cruise Department launched in 2013 an hospitality label named “Cruise Friendly”, especially designed for the local partners and storekeepers. In 2015, 91 local partners agreed to sign the hospitality label (70 at Toulon and 21 at La Seyne-sur-Mer); they were 54 in 2014 (+ 68% growth in one year!).
For 2016, the Marketing team will enlarge the number of partners again!