Vancouver port welcomes 'so excited' 25 millionth cruise ship passenger

Vancouver port welcomes 'so excited' 25 millionth cruise ship passenger

A family of thrilled travellers got the star treatment Wednesday after one of them, Cheryl Spangler, arrived in Vancouver as the city's 25 millionth cruise passenger. 

"Everybody's so excited. No one was really sure what it was," Spangler said.

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority let Spangler know she was the lucky number via phone from her home in Wilmington, Illinois.

As a result, Spangler is getting an upgraded room with a veranda and is excited to see what else is in store. 

"Cake, cupcakes, band. I hear I might have a tiara but I'm not sure," she said with a laugh.  

Robin Silvester, the president of the port authority, said this many passengers marks a terrific milestone. 

"The cruise sector remains a real strength for our ports, our economy and our city," Silvester said, adding that it generates over $1.6 billion of economic activity across the region. 

He said if you lined up the average cruise ship filled with 25 million passengers, they would stretch approximately from Vancouver to Juneau, Alaska. 

"It's quite incredible when you think about it. That's a lot of people and a lot of ships," he said.

With files from CBC's Yvette Brend