NEW YORK -- Spanish ports attracted 18.5 million international
cruise passengers in 2000, according to statistics from the Spanish
umbrella organization Puertos del Estado, which represents 18 ports
in and around Spain.
While the passenger total represents a 4% decline from 1999
figures, said Puertos officials, 1999 represented "an exceptional
year for cruise traffic in the Mediterranean, which captured almost
20% of the world's cruise traffic."
The passenger totals are driving Spanish investment in cruise
infrastructure, said Puertos.
Spain will spend $50 million on improving passenger facilities
and boosting port-city relations in 2001.
Puertos del Estado studies show the average cruise passenger
spends around $120, "six times that of a conventional tourist."