The total number of cruise passengers in Malta in 2018 stood at 632,739, a drop of 5.6 per cent over 2017, according to the National Statistics Office (NSO). Of these, two-thirds (66.9 per cent) came from EU Member States.
There were 310 cruise liner calls in 2018, with an average 2,041 passengers per vessel, compared to 342 calls and an average 1,959 passengers per vessel in 2017.
Looking at quarterly figures, there were 95 cruise liner calls during the fourth quarter of 2018, one more than the previous year. At 94.2 per cent, transit passengers accounted for the absolute majority of total traffic, reaching 180,174.
A total of 1,641 passengers visited Gozo in the fourth quarter of 2018, while 8,613 passengers spent at least one night on board their berthed cruise liner. On average, every vessel that berthed in Malta carried 2,013 passengers, 21 more than the previous year.
Passengers from EU Member States comprised 66.6 per cent of total traffic, the major markets being Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom and France. The total number of passengers from non-EU countries stood at 63,949, of whom 38.2 per cent came from the United States.
Women passengers made up 54 per cent of the total. The largest share of passengers fell within the 60-79 age bracket and were followed by those aged between 40 and 59.