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Passenger ships

A total number of 2,141 passenger ships (over 1000 Gross Tons) was registered in 2016. This number includes ferries as well as cruise ships. Indonesia is the country with the highest number of registered passenger ships, followed by Italy and Norway. The majority of the passenger ships in these countries are ferries: Indonesia needs ships to connect with all its islands, Norway with its fjords, that are otherwise difficult to reach and Italy with its proximity to other ports in the Mediterranean Sea.

Cruise ships have a smaller smaller share of the overall numbers of passenger ships, even though the demand for cruises is growing. According to the Cruise Lines International Association, the demand for cruises has increased more than 60% 2005-2015. The majority of cruise passengers come from the United States, China and Germany, followed by the United Kingdom and Australia.

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Technical Notes

This map shows the proportion of passenger ships in the world registered there in 2016.

Data sources
This map uses data by U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration (last accessed March 2018). We aim to map as complete data as possible and therefore estimate data for missing values. In some cases, missing data for very small territories is not used in the cartogram and that area is therefore omitted in the map.

Further notes on the data, as well as all modifications to the original data source are noted in our data sheets. Data for this map will soon be available as a download.

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