SkySea Cruise Line’s Golden Era is the first Chinese-owned luxury cruise liner to serve the southern China market. [Photo/xmnn.cn]
China’s first luxury cruise company SkySea launched its maiden voyage in Xiamen, Fujian province on June 7.
Its luxury liner Golden Era will carry 2,000 passengers on its a six-day voyage, with 10 cruises planned for the summer in total.
This is the first time a domestic luxury cruise company has entered the southern China market.
Xiamen already has a thriving cruise industry, with routes extending from the southeast China coast to Southeast Asia. In 2016, the city’s cruise liner supply sector reached 75 million yuan ($11 million) in output, according to Xiamen Evening News.
The Golden Era also became the first luxury liner to make use of Xiamen’s new fast-track supply service.
A container loaded with goods from Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam passed through the new system before loading the ship on June 7.
The fast-track service is designed to allow companies to supply globally-sourced goods to cruise liners more quickly and efficiently than previously.
The more convenient system is expected to attract more cruise companies to stop for supplies in Xiamen, rather than ports in Japan or South Korea. Previously, 80 percent of cruises that start in China got their supplies from Japanese or Korean ports.
The new system works by streamlining the inspection system and removing red tape.
Imported foods directly supplied to cruise liners can now be treated as transit goods (or floating cargo) during quarantine checks.
Adding Chinese labels to prepackaged foods is no longer necessary. Official health department documents are also not required to be produced during inspections of health foods.