EDITORIAL: Victoria’s wandering tourists

Cruise ship passengers could have problems finding Victoria on foot

Today, Princess Cruise Lines’ Crown Princess and Coral Princess will arrive at Ogden Point with 5,070 passengers.

The tourists will spend thousands of dollars in our region over their quick visit to the Capital City. The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority says each cruise call is worth $500,000 to the region’s economy.

Yet while Victoria gets high marks from those passengers who disembark these mega ship. There is one thing missing: how they get around on foot.

The harbour authority does a good job getting passengers on shuttle buses, pedicabs and other forms of transportation, but it’s lacking resources when it comes to showing Victoria to tourists who just want to take a stroll into downtown by themselves.

Several tourists told us last week that there is a “big tent” at Ogden Point, but once you leave the safe confines of the port there is few, if any, directional signs pointing tourists to downtown or back to port.

Tourism Victoria CEO Paul Nursey has often repeated that today’s tourist wants experiential experiences (read: how the locals live).

Says Nursey: “We are introducing 500,000 people to our destination, and we need to engage the community.”

The cruise passengers would never be able to have that experience without fear of getting lost.

The entire idea could be rectified with just a few dollars being spent on extra signage.

After all, we all want cruise passengers to enjoy our city and the more they rave and are satisfied with their trip, the more likely is it that they will return.