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Cruise Industry Sailing Toward a Better Future, Says CLIA

“The cruise industry is back,” said Kelly Craighead, CLIA president and CEO, during the Seatrade Cruise Global. Photo source: @CLIA

As the international cruise industry resumes operations, passenger volume is expected to recover and surpass 2019 levels by the end of 2023, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) President and CEO Kelly Craighead said during the Seatrade Cruise Global event that is taking place in Miami, Florida.

Craighead also said that cruise passenger volumes would recover 12 percent above pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2026.

“Cruising is accessible, responsible, and experiential – making it the best way to see the world for people of all ages and interests. With the support of an incredibly resilient community, the future of the cruise industry is bright,” she added.

During the ongoing Seatrade Cruise Global, CLIA shared new findings that are evidence of the cruise community’s resilience:

  • Intent to cruise is rebounding, with 63 percent of cruisers or potential cruisers indicating they are “very likely” or “likely” to cruise in the next two years
  • 69 percent of respondents that have never cruised said they are open to cruise, exceeding pre-pandemic levels
  • millennial cruisers are the most enthusiastic about taking another cruise, with 87 percent indicating they will take a cruise in the next few years, followed by Gen X at 85 percent.

Sustainability and innovation

Recognising that shoreside power is only one pathway to decarbonisation, CLIA also shared that it will join the Global Maritime Forum Call to Action for Shipping Decarbonization to make zero emission vessels and fuels the default choice by 2030.

CLIA’s announcements include a commitment that by 2035 all ships calling at ports where shoreside electricity (SSE) is available will be equipped to use SSE, allowing engines to be switched off and effectively eliminating carbon emissions while berthed at port. Where shoreside power is not available, the ships will use available alternative low carbon technologies required by ports.

“We continue to set ambitious carbon reduction goals as an industry, and cruise lines are showing the way by partnering with fuel suppliers, shipyards, technology manufacturers and academic institutions to develop new lower carbon fuel sources. We are investing in our future,” said CLIA Chairman Pierfrancesco Vago.

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