Conference paper first online:
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 1278)
The Blue Economy constitutes a large and fast growing part of the European Economy. In 2017, it accounted for nearly € 74.3 billion in gross operating profit, and an annual turnover of approximately € 658 billion. Among all blue economic sectors, cruise tourism is one of the most important ones, with the Mediterranean region still accounting for the second most popular cruise destination in the world, after the Caribbean. The contribution of the cruise sector to the local economies of most ports of call however, proves to be quite limited, with negative externalities often surpassing derived benefits. Promoting and integrating ‘traditional’ products into cruise supply chains can be a promising solution addressing this situation. It may also provide passengers with an enhanced local-tasting experience that may make their journey even more memorable. Focusing on Greece and its numerous ports integrated into various cruise itineraries, this paper explores cruise network characteristics and identifies local products that can be promoted at different ports of call for boosting customer experience. Through a novel e-marketplace that is being outlined, cruise companies will be able to directly connect with local producers and suppliers and place their orders. Seamless information may also provide benefits with regard to improving transport and logistics processes.