More travelers will be taking to the seas for recreation in 2018 with more ships hitting the waters to meet the demand, according to the annual Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) report released this week.
CLIA’s 2018 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook found that cruise travel is steadily on the rise with a projected 27.2 million passengers expected to set sail in 2018. To meet the demand, more vessels are scheduled to set sail in 2018. CLIA Cruise Lines will debut 27 new ocean, river and specialty ships this coming year.
As for next year’s cruise travel trends? Τravelers of all budgets will take a cruise; experiential travel will be replaced by “transformational” experiences including cultural immersion, “voluntourism” and extreme adventures; sustainable tourism practices will be offered and encouraged on board; millennials will be opting for river and small ship cruising; multigenerational cruising is set to gain ground; travelers will opt for “colder” destinations such as the Baltics, Canada, Alaska, and Antarctica; health and wellness trips will pick up pace; more on-board smart travel technology including wearable gadgets providing personalized experiences will be offered; travel agents will continue to be a go-to source due to ease of planning, valued expertise and affordability.
In 2017, an estimated 25.8 million passengers took a cruise against 24.7 million in 2016, an increase of 20.5 percent over five years from 2011-2016.