By Bob Weiss, Travel Contributor

BOSTON (CBS) – Boston’s six-month cruise season is underway.

The Norwegian Cruise Line launched at the Black Falcon Terminal on May 3 with the first of 22 weekly trips between Boston and Bermuda. The Holland America line launched its seven-day cruise to Quebec City a day later on the Veendam.

Holland America offers both a seven-day trip and a 14 day round-trip to Quebec City. On May 25, a second Holland America Line ship, the Maasdam will start 9 round-trips to Montreal.

Carnival Cruise Line’s Glory will return to Boston June 4th for its second consecutive year with seven, five and four-day round-trips that include Halifax, Nova Scotia. The seven day trips will include a port-of-call in Portland, Maine.

Last year, 117 ships and more than 380,000 passengers came through the Black Falcon Cruise Terminal.

For the first time this year, Massport, which operates the cruise terminal, will offer free wireless internet access for passengers.

Research by an electronics retailer found that 80-percent of vacation travelers bring at least one electronic device with them and 65-percent of those passengers have used the free wi-fi when it is available.

The Cruise Lines International Association trade group estimated that the ships calling on the Port of Boston account for more than $450 million in the six-month cruise season. Crew members alone spend an estimated $25 million.

Princess Cruises is another line that has ships making multiple one-day stops in Boston. One of the annual highlights of the cruise season is the July 4th arrival of the Cunard Line’s Queen Mary 2.

Boston and Massport will host the annual Canada New England Cruise conference that will be held at The Seaport Hotel from May 21 to May 23. Major cruise line executives and port officials will be in town for this event.

The Black Falcon Cruise Terminal is located about two miles from Logan Airport, making it one of the major advantages of Cruiseport Boston for passengers coming to Boston to board ships. The city is also getting an increase in people who plan a day or two extra to visit attractions in the city.

Bob Weiss reports on business travel on Mondays at 5:55 a.m. on WBZ NewsRadio 1030.


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