Schedule Alaska Cruise Ship Season 2016 – Ogden Point (Victoria BC Vancouver Island)

Ogden Point Piers
Ogden Point Piers

Effective April 3rd 2016 the Star Princess will be the first cruise ship to dock at Ogden Point for 2016.

Will arrive from Los Angeles at 08:00 pst and leave for Vancouver at 23:59 pst

http://victoriacruise.ca/page/cruise-schedule

 

 

Alaska Cruise season 2015 to Ogden Point finishes with 2016 Growth

The Star Princess was the last ship in for Alaska 2015 cruise season at Ogden Point , on its way to Los Angeles.

Deck. Ship. At sea....

Per attached article ,

http://www.timescolonist.com/news/local/more-cruise-visitors-expected-next-year-on-bigger-ships-1.2107226

quote: ” Overall, the harbour authority welcomed 227 ship visits and about 533,000 passengers in 2015 — up from 206 ship visits and about 465,000 passengers the previous year –  It’s a record year,” said Ian Robertson, chief executive officer of the harbour authority, which oversees cruise operations at Ogden Point. “It’s a record year for number of ships and number of passengers coming into Victoria.” Robertson attributed the increase to the growing Alaskan cruise market and the rising appeal of Victoria as a destination port –  ”

It is expected for 2016 to be same number of ships but larger capacity as RCCL will be sending the International’s Explorer of the Seas , a first to Alaska.

This year with introduction of low sulphur ships , ferry to Inner Harbour , improvements to Ogden Point and transportation , our cruise port is very popular with passengers and crew.

Looking for forward to 2016 season.

Crown Princess – Alaska Cruise Smoke unit

On May 28th it was reported that a fire broke out in the storage area of the theatre

It turned out to be a smoke generating unit was left on and overheated.

No fire but lots of smoke

To give credit the crew and Captain took charge per story and all was restored

To my mind, considering the packed area used for entertainment staff costumes and supplies this type of unit should be kept in a non flammable area at least

Given Princess does not use lighted candles anymore for baked Alaska parade though the MDR , only battery ones why do we need a smoke unit that can overheat

Had it overheated to a degree and burnt the wall cable or surrounding materials then this could have been much worse in potential damage to ship

For entertainment purposes , one could use lightening effects to create the illusion of smoke

Retire these machines period for everyone’s safety as entertainment staff in rush for a performance change or stage hands can forget

Lesson learned so think out of the box

My view

http://www.cruiselawnews.com/2015/05/articles/fires-1/fire-on-crown-princess/

Ogden Point, Vancouver Island – Alaska Cruise Season 2015 Schedule / Items

Well, I am pleased that not only was today in Victoria , Canada on beautiful Vancouver Island a wonderful sunny day,  though at 16C but our first cruise ship ‘Grand Princess’ will be docking at Ogden Point this Wednesday April 22nd 2015 at  07:00 pst from Vancouver and to San Francisco at 14:00 pst.  It will then begin its regular Alaska cruises back to Vancouver.

This year 230 cruise ship port visits will be made to Ogden Point , majority are on route back to Seattle or San Francisco with some being repositioning cruises and some parts of World Cruise segments. This year we expect a large number of ships to dock in morning or afternoon giving passengers a longer time to enjoy Victoria instead of the standard for some of 18:00 to 23:50 pst stops. Mind you our daylight hours are longer into the late summer.

The last scheduled cruise ship will be the ‘Star Princess’ on November 9th 2015 , making its way to Los Angeles

Here is the link to our schedule  http://victoriacruise.ca/page/cruise-schedule   and a PDF can be downloaded from this site.

The  Times Colonist has written a great article on the pending season ,  quote : ” Cruise-ship daytime visits are scheduled to rise by about 17 per cent this year compared with last, bringing good news to local businesses keen to sell services and goods to tourists. – See more at: http://www.timescolonist.com/news/local/more-cruise-ships-coming-earlier-in-day-to-victoria-staying-longer-1.1820867#sthash.SA62Wkkn.dpuflink is here

Sadly we have been advised by the Times Colonist that   ” Harry, Happy and Henrietta, the Hippo buses that have been carrying tourists on land and on water in Greater Victoria, are leaving for warmer weather in the Caribbean. – See more at:  http://www.timescolonist.com/business/victoria-s-hippo-tourism-buses-head-to-warmer-climate-1.1822578     So, will it be Barbados or St Maarten or what Island in the Caribbean to host these three land/sea buses 🙂

Of special note and thank you to a Facebook friend in the UK , I was advised that the Crown Princess will be in dry dock at Victoria Sea Span Yards from approximate May 1 – 15 2015 , undergoing tune-ups and maintenance.

http://www.seaspan.com/seaspan-shipyards-cruiseship-repairs

These yards have worked on many cruise ships and have a reputation of quality work and to ensure the job is completed on schedule allowing it to begin its scheduled Alaska runs out of Seattle.

Welcome to all the crew and contractors , course we enjoy the revenue and work in our city .

Ogden Point Busy January 2015

Our local harbour welcomed the MV Brattingsborg V6005 from Mexico as it offloaded two yachts
We have many pleasure craft delivered this way at the harbour.
Saves one coming up the Pacific Coast at this time of year
The Bulk Carrier MV Lillian is in port to have its inners scrubbed and cleaned as we have a deep water port
Alaska Cruise ship 2015 estimates are we will see 231 ship visits with a record 530,000 visitors scheduled excluding crew.
Royal Caribbean will be replacing the 915 foot Rhapsody of the Seas with the 962 foot Jewel of the Seas visiting our port this year.
Our local James Bay Association should be quieter this year as the new NA sulphur fuel content to lowest level much like EU rules take effect this month
Expect possible fare increases to accommodate this more expensive fuel on the Alaskan waters

Stay tuned when the 2015 schedule is published I will post
Cheers. / Rob

Ogden Point: End of Alaska Season 2014 – ms Zaandam

The last ship for the Alaska 2014 season docked at Ogden Point , Victoria , Vancouver Island Canada on October 6th 2014. It arrived from Vancouver BC at 07:00 pst and left for San Diego at 13:00  pst.

I arrived at the dock area around 11:00 pst and it was fully fogged in,  though by 11:45 pst it had finally lifted. Many passengers walking around, coming back by bus or taxi and crew looking for WiFi access near the shops.

I had finished taking some pictures , some inserted here and was relaxing on a bench watching passengers pass though security and final excursion buses arriving. Driver pulls out a step stool for  folks to come off the bus onto the pavement and they all start to walk to the terminal to board the ship but two folks decide to walk in the other direction , away from the ship. !

I watched and thought , who in Victoria would take a shuttle bus back to a ship ?  My concern was it was now going on 12:00 pst ( Noon) and the ship was leaving at 13:00 pst. (yes, I am known to ensure one does not miss a ship’s departure, prefer being on board 1- 2 hours prior)

It was two woman , one perhaps in her 70’s / 80’s walking slowly and the other , a daughter or young friend in her 40’s.  I ran after them and asked if they were off the ship, they said yes and had been told they had time to visit our Ogden Point Breakwater wall.  I said well you do realize that it will take you about ten minutes to get there (plus the stairs). It will take you from here about five – ten minutes to get on the ship going through local security, Most ships do begin the process to bring in the gangplank   30 minutes prior to departure. They  looked at me in wonder  and then left to board the ship, walking slowly, I sat there watching and finally saw them emerge on the quay after security at 12:20 pst , walking slowly. The good news was there was a long queue at the gangplank, waiting to board.  🙂

Love to find the intelligent person who gave them that advice…… crazy

I am enclosing an article that explains the benefits to the local city for cruising and tourism  and of course we want folks to come back for a longer visit to our shores.

We had 462,201 passengers approximate plus crew  from 205 scheduled port visits this year

A few ships could not dock due to weather but that was rare, and we brought in 33.4 million dollars per a report in March 2014 from previous seasons ( seems to be the normal average of $60 – $100 a passenger , per my unofficial calculations).

http://www.vicnews.com/news/277956851.html

Here are some of the pictures I took (cc Robbar — Robert Holloway)

ms Zaandam (fog gone)
ms Zaandam (fog gone)
 ms Zaandam , tenders in Fog
ms Zaandam , tenders in Fog
 ms Zaandam  (fog)
ms Zaandam (fog)
New water shuttle
New water shuttle
New Marine water shuttle
New Marine water shuttle
ms Zaandam ( fog lifting )
ms Zaandam ( fog lifting )
ms Zaandam ( barely visible in Fog)
ms Zaandam ( barely visible in Fog)
Breakwater Wall in the Fog Ogden Point
Breakwater Wall in the Fog Ogden Point
Cable Ship "Wave Venture"
Cable Ship “Wave Venture”

Ogden Point: End of Alaska Season 2014 (almost)

Been awhile since my last post as we were in Barbados with family so missed a few months of cruise ships porting to Ogden Point , Victoria Canada.

Only one week  left and the ms Zaandam on October 6 , 2014 will be the last ship in for the 2014 season , all will be quiet.

The ship will arrive from Hawaii on October 4, go to Vancouver , back here and off to San Diego.

– Tomorrow on September 29, 2014 the Star Princess will arrive from Ketchikan , Alaska and then on to San Francisco.

– On September 21, 2014 I went down to Ogden Point to see the Silversea ‘Silver Shadow’  and the Celebrity ‘Solstice 

Have added some pictures.

Silversea  - Ogden Point   Sept 2014
Silversea – Ogden Point Sept 2014
Ogden Point Sept 2014
Ogden Point Sept 2014
Leaving Ogden Point , into channel
Leaving Ogden Point , into channel
Ogden Point ,
Ogden Point ,

We  had a good season with lots of passengers and no loud noise from the community of pollution , noise, horse poop , cars going through quiet streets.

The Victoria Harbour Authority has done a lot of work in listening to concerns, offering ways to provide options to go into town that lessen traffic and yet retain a vital business for the community.

Early 2015,  the North America Act for bunker fuel usage by cruise ships comes into effect,  as in ” more stringent 0.1 percent sulfur rule effective in 2015 ‘ .

Some estimates suggest a cost increase per week per passenger as in Alaska by $100+ , which in the broad scheme of things is less then tax you pay by Air for fuel usage and in this case , much cleaner , so less impact to environment, peoples whose health can be effected and other reasons.

http://www.cliaalaska.org/safetyenvironment/air/

Alaska Cruises weather comments (Fog)

Right now I am sitting here in my living room thinking about the weather while Ms Lucy (Labrador dog)

Ms Lucy, dreaming of being on a cruise :)
Ms Lucy, dreaming of being on a cruise 🙂

relaxes enjoying the comfort of the carpet and at times the bed.
You see it is starting to get darker and cooler now

yet our summer is in full bloom f9f2d-p5130108

while during the day it is warmer !
As our Alaska cruise passengers arrive , one  hopes they have a sweater or hoody as weather  can surprise one and we are not in the part that gets more rain or could
The Alaska weather is beautiful yet it can have bouts of Fog 😳


Did I say Fog !      On some cruise blogs and Facebook I have recently read about passengers who have complained about the sound of the fog horn.
In fact it seems to be a regular complaint by a few on multiple cruises. Some have requested a refund or credit of $100 or more though  the best is to request the Captain to turn it off,  especially at night , so they can sleep. Entitlement comes to mind of these people and thankfully they are not the vast majority of cruisers.
One evening this year , it was reported that cruising in waters between Victoria and Seattle it was sounded almost every few minutes as the fog was thick and of course our waters are the gateway for the Pacific
I wonder if they really understand they are on a ship with a few thousand other passengers and it is for their

Safety !

Certainly I would prefer knowing other ships know I am near and I know they are present also..
Maritime law prevails period.

Alaska cruising is a wonderful experience but you are in a climate of seas and mountains. Cruise 2001 - August - Cruise to Alaska Victoria BC Ogden Point Cafe and Crew WiFi Access
It blows my mind away to read how some people want to dictate against ones own safety

A few years ago I discovered I had Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) which means that today being cooler or going up and down many steps like a cruise ship,  can make my knees ache
Thankfully it can pass and I watch myself , though Ms Lucy right now is sleeping and snoring beside my leg as I type on my mobile.
I will close with the ‘Fog’ observation and add some more revelations in my next post
Cheers. / Rob

Cruise Ship Fire: Holland America- ms Westerdam

A fire broke out in the Boiler room just after leaving Seattle and all is under control now with passengers and crew fine after returning to Seattle. After various approvals , has resumed its 7 day cruise to Alaska . Read attached

http://www.news889.com/2014/06/29/cruise-ship-returns-to-seattle-following-boiler-room-fire-company-says-no-one-hurt/