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Florida cruise industry grows again, becomes $46B economic driver

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

Cruises and related activities continue to be some of Florida’s biggest economic drivers.

Last year, travelers spent more than $8 billion in Florida on cruises and related items, which the Miami Herald says made up 38 percent of the $21 billion spent in the United States on such trips.

According to Legislative IQ powered by Lobby Tools, the cruise industry supported 146,401 jobs in 2014, paying $6.82 billion in wages, a growth of 8.4 percent over 2013. Total income – through direct expenditures – also increased 4.6 percent. Taking into account indirect spending, the cruise ship industry gave rise to nearly $46 billion in statewide economic impact.

An industry survey found the number of U.S.-based passengers also grew by 5.8 percent, reaching 11.33 million. Passengers embarking from U.S. ports rose nearly 14 percent, more than international passenger growth in regions such as the Mediterranean, which are still reeling from a slower European economy.

The three busiest ports in Florida are Miami — home to three leading cruise lines — Fort Lauderdale, and Cape Canaveral.

Via Legislative IQ powered by Lobby Tools.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at [email protected] and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

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