Cruising is one of the fastest growing segments in the travel industry, as more and more travellers are embracing this exciting way to vacation.
Here are the Top 10 Cruising Trends for 2012:
1. 10 Day Cruises – More and more cruisers feel that 7 days is just not long enough, and many of the major cruise lines are adding more longer sailings to their offering. Another benefit of longer cruises is that ships can venture further from the embarkation port.
2. All Inclusive - Some cruise lines are starting to include drinks in the fare, and Transat is now offering the all-inclusive Pullmantur line. The high end Regent line even includes shore excursions and can actually be more cost effective than mid-range lines when you consider everything that is included.
3. Enrichment Programs – More than ever, people want to learn, and many cruise lines are offering guest speakers, seminars, classes, and other programs to enhance the experience for clients.
4. Emerging Destinations – More countries are realizing the benefits of opening their ports to cruise traffic, and frequengt cruisers are demanding newer and more unique destinations. Adventure and expediation cruises are hot right now. Asia, Africa, South America, and even the Middle East are becoming more accessible to cruisers.
5. Ship board activities – Cruise lines are getting more and more creative with the activities that they are offering. You can now do a high ropes course on Carnival, ride a huge waterslide on Disney, and have a simulated F1 experience on Costa. You can also ice skate, surf, watch movies on deck, have a picnic on real grass, and so much more!
6. More adults only areas – Families are enjoying cruises more and more, and that also means that adults are looking for more space to relax in peace. Many cruise lines are expanding their poolside adults only areas.
7. Major Ship Renovations – New ships come out all the time, and to stay competitive and recoup their investment, cruise lines are spending big money to keep older ships looking fresh and appealing.
8. Extending Port Stays – Cruise lines are breaking free of the daytime port stop model and offering more over night stays for the ports that justify it.
9. Customizable Shore Excursions – Many guests have shown willingness to pay for the perfect shore excursions, and cruise lines and tour companies are working to accomodate them.
10. More Partnerships with Major Brands – Look for this to continue to become more prevalent as cruise lines go for that edge over the competition. For example, NCL has been adding names like Blue Man Group, Legends in Concert, Cirque, Howl at the Moon Dueling Pianos, and Nickolodeon, and Carnival has partnered with Guy’s Burger Joing, Punchliner Comedy Clubs, EA Sports Bars, and Hasbro.
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