There has been a lot of talk happening lately with the problems that went on with Carnival Cruise and the fire which left hundreds stranded at sea for days. With that, competition has gotten fierce in the cruise game as some ships and ports try to get the upper hand on others. Now, word from the Times-Picayune on Monday, Feb. 18, 2013, is that the Port of New Orleans is looking to get the Disney Cruise Line into the "Big Easy."
Gary LaGrange, president and CEO of the Port of New Orleans, said that he had a recent meeting with Disney Cruise Line executives to suggest that they look at New Orleans for a future home port. LaGrange is hoping to get Disney Cruise Line into New Orleans once the new terminal is completed in 2014.
There are "as many as a dozen ports" looking to bring in Disney Cruise Line, but LaGrange says that he feels "pretty good" about the chances of them coming to the Port of New Orleans.
Construction on the new Port of New Orleans is slated to begin in the third quarter of this year. Even though construction hasn't started on it yet, LaGrange wants to be ahead of the game.
"If you start working 12 months, you're late, I think." Still, bringing Disney into the mix is "not in the bag, far from it, but at least we're in the game, and that's the main thing," he said.
Disney Cruise Line recently announced a number of new ports and itineraries for 2014, and started sailing out of Galveston, TX within the past few years. The family friendly atmosphere that comes along with the Disney name is what everyone knows will be brought to wherever they go or dock.
"If you get Disney, it's sort of the seal of good housekeeping," said Oivind Mathisen, editor of Cruise Industry News, a New York trade newsletter.
"Obviously they attract families, more families than the other cruise lines since they're so family-oriented, it's sort of a stamp of approval on the port as a family destination," Mathisen said.
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