Ahead of a May 18, 2021 Broward County commission meeting, it has been revealed Port Everglades is the previously mentioned ‘competing port’ to PortMiami referenced in an agenda item for a February Miami-Dade County Board of County Commissioners meeting for which Disney Cruise Line is pursuing.
SeaTrade Cruise News broke the story last night, revealing Disney Cruise Line has made a formal request to enter into negotiations with Port Everglades about a long-term berthing agreement with the intention of sailing year-round a ship capable of carrying approximately 3,500 passengers. As we already know, Disney has an berthing agreement in place with PortMiami through 2024, and the Disney Dream is already offering voyages year-round beginning in the summer of 2022 when the Disney Wish take over the 3-/4-night Bahamian route at Port Canaveral. Time will tell if Disney Cruise Line is considering leaving PortMiami permanently, or if this is a long term plan for when the Disney Wish’s sister ships go into service. Disney previously was in negotiations for a dedicated cruise terminal in PortMiami before the shifting over to a shared usage agreement at the new MSC terminal.
The Port Everglades – DCL agenda item the May 18th meeting reads as follows:
Jose Fernandez, Vice President Port Strategy, Development & Operations for Disney Cruise Line sent a formal request letter to Port Everglades on April 26, 2021 to initiate discussions for Cruise Terminal 4 and accompanying berth.
April 26, 2021
RE: Cruise Terminal and Accompanying Berth
Dear Director Daniels:
Please let this letter serve as a formal request from Magical Cruise Company, Limited d/b/a Disney Cruise Line, seeking authorization to engage in formal discussions and negotiations with Broward County-Port Everglades, regarding a berth and terminal agreement for CT-4 for use by Disney Cruise Line ships.
As you may know, there are three new ships joining the Disney Cruise Line fleet through 2025, with the first being the Disney Wish which is scheduled to set sail in Summer 2022. All three ships will be powered by liquefied natural gas and, at approximately 144,000 gross tons and 1,250 guest staterooms, will be slightly larger than the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy, currently sailing out of Port Canaveral. As a result of this fleet expansion, Disney Cruise Line has intentions to homeport a ship capable of carrying approximately 3,500 guests on a year round basis in South Florida.
We look forward to hearing from you regarding our request, and hope to engage in such negotiations upon receipt of a positive position from the Board of County Commissioners.
Disney told SeaTrade’s Anne Kalosh, ‘We were recently made aware of an emerging opportunity at Port Everglades and are beginning formal discussions to explore this further. We are grateful for the strong relationship we enjoy with PortMiami and for Miami-Dade County’s ongoing support of the cruise industry.’
The next step in the process if for Port Everglades to ask for permission from Broward County Commissioners at the May 18, 2021. If the board approves, the port may then begin formal discussions with Disney Cruise Line.
Port Everglades Cruiseport is roughly 30 miles north of PortMiami in Fort Lauderdale and provides easy access to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL).