Aalborg, Denmark, becomes a one-ship destination
Aalborg has taken the bold decision to accept only one cruiseship at a time in future, hence protecting its unique selling point/UPS. “The point is to give the full attention to the guests on each single cruise vessel and give them the best possible experience in Aalborg,” explained Lars Bech, cruise manager Visit Aalborg.
In the last five years Denmark’s only inland cruise port has seen passenger numbers increase from 1,000 in 2014 to 40,000 in 2018. This year and next the numbers continue to increase with 34 and 45 calls scheduled respectively.
Although the Port of Aalborg can host several ships of up to 250m in length at the same time, the port and Visit Aalborg have taken the brave decision to become a one-ship destination.
“For these type of ships and passengers, hospitality, hosting and closeness to the city are a key focus. We have no doubt in our minds that the main reasons [for increased calls] are our three unique selling points: scenic sailing in the greatest fjord in Denmark; docking directly at the Royal Cruise Berth in the heart of the city; and the best hospitality in the Baltics, and we don’t want to compromise these,” commented Bech.
“It is our own choice to make this restriction. There is no local or national regulation forcing us to do this. It is only a matter of Aalborg wanting to make the best possible experience for each single guest and cruise line,” added Michael Rosenkilde Lind, cruise manager Port of Aalborg.
“For us, this is the best way to honour our selling points. We want to give all our guests the best possible experience every time they visit Aalborg, and by going forth with this concept, we can focus on improving on each single cruise line and ship instead of spreading our focus. This way we can give our guests our full attention, the best experience and the loving hospitality that we are known for,” he added.
Bech continued: “Aalborg, with no World Heritage sites, has a charm, a culture and a lifestyle that is the envy of many. Once awarded the happiest city in Europe by the European Union and number eight on The New York Post list of places to go in 2019, Aalborg can justly claim to be at the forefront.
“Not only for its innovative, forward-thinking sightseeing tours for the cruise guests, but also its phoenix-like regeneration of the former commercial waterfront to an architectural gem, which has brought new life to the city. And it is right here in the epicentre of the city, that cruise guests will arrive, enjoy, and experience the best of Denmark.”
The initial reaction has been welcomed. Lind commented: “We have already received very positive feedback from the cruiselines we are in contact with.”