NCL Celebrates Hawaii

In a concerted effort to stimulate tourism, Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL), along with the Island of Hawai`i Visitors Bureau, hosted a private event in Hilo yesterday – attended by PressToday’s Greg Coates – to celebrate the culture, history and people of Hawaii.

The cruise line also announced a new, limited-time free (and reduced) airfare promotion.

Focused on educating and reacquainting prospective visitors with the 50th state, the cruise line and visitors bureau welcomed government officials and top travel professionals from across North America at the `Imiloa Astronomy Center in Hilo.

Andy Stuart, president and chief executive officer of Norwegian Cruise Line, Ross Birch, executive director of the Island of Hawai`i Visitors Bureau, and State Representative Richard Onishi addressed the group, each emphasizing the tourism opportunities across the Hawaiian Islands.

Stuart discussed the company’s long-standing support for the destination and its 14 years of offering inter-island sailings year-round from Honolulu.

“I always talk about it as being the perfect cruising location. The variety between these four islands (Oahu, Maui, The Big Island and Kauai, featured by NCL) that are so close together is really quite striking,” said Stuart, noting that the itinerary is the most port intensive offered by the cruise line. “We have over a 100 hours in port to really give folks the opportunity to experience this incredible destination.”

He also announced the company’s most recent effort to encourage travel to Hawaii – a new Free At Sea offer which provides free and reduced airfare from 37 US airports, as well as from Vancouver, beginning Oct. 4.

Agents can view promotion details at

“Our Pride of America sailings continue to be one of the most coveted itineraries we offer,” added Stuart. “We remain dedicated to this captivating destination which is why we are inspiring travellers with this latest free air promotion. We want to encourage vacationers to take a closer look at Pride of America, Hawaii and all this paradise state has to offer.”

Each year, NCL draws more than 111,000 travellers to Hawaii and adds close to US$436 million to the state’s economy.

“We appreciate the continued commitment of Norwegian Cruise Line to showcase the island of Hawaii to its guests, especially considering the challenges in travel demand that Kilauea volcano’s latest lava flow created this past summer,” said Birch. “With most of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park having reopened, visitors can now enjoy all that our majestic island has to offer. The air quality is clean and beautiful for all to enjoy, new nature-based experiences are available, and the weather will continue to be warm and welcoming throughout the fall and winter months.”

In addition to yesterday’s event in Hilo, NCL is currently hosting more than 50 travel professionals aboard Pride of America this week.

For more on NCL and Hawaii, watch for upcoming issues of Canadian Travel Press and Travel Courier.

Main Photo Caption

NCL president Andy Stuart (c) with Ross Birch, executive director of the Island of Hawai’i Visitors Bureau, and Richard H.K. Onishi, state representative.

Photo Above

Local officials give the ‘thumbs up’ to NCL and to Hawaii.