The Newest Caribbean Cruise Port?

South Padre Island, TexasPHOTO: South Padre Island, Texas might be developed into a Caribbean cruise port. (photo via Flickr/Vince Smith)South Padre Island, Texas may be a cruise port in the near future.

The local city council recently approved a proposal for the destination to receive western Caribbean itinerary calls.

“South Padre Island has been a hidden U.S. jewel for many years,” said Mayor Dennis Stahl, in a press release. “We are looking forward to sharing our unique ecotourism sites, like Sea Turtle Inc., a renowned sea turtle rescue centre, and the Birding and Nature Center, a world-class birdwatching destination, in addition to our pristine beaches and adventure activities.”

SPI Cruise Group—a collaboration of cruise port design, maritime operations and marketing professionals—put forth the proposal. It comes at a time when western Caribbean sailings from the Port of Galveston, Texas are increasingly popular. Meanwhile, there is a concern of abundant tourism in eastern and southern Caribbean ports as cruise lines seek out sustainable alternative destinations.

The lines are specifically looking for those with existing tourism infrastructure, and South Padre Island is primed with adventures on land, sea and sky, including beautiful local beaches.

SPI Cruise Group is comprised of MarketScope Global, IDEA, Cruise and Port Advisors and NewmanPR. The project’s first step of marketing and communicating the plan to raise cruise industry executive awareness of South Padre Island is anticipated to take four months.

Beyond that, getting potential passengers interested to visit might be even easier as travellers love fresh destinations, especially in the Caribbean.

Tried-and-true ports are favourites for a reason, but anytime something new can be added to the equation it drums up excitement. In the case of the cruise lines, it may give them a bit of a competitive advantage to offer something entirely different as well.