Recently released figures by the Passenger Shipping Association show that despite 2009 being one of the most challenging years on record for the holiday market, the UK cruise industry is bucking the trend and continues to grow.
We are predicting a record 1.55 million Brits will take a cruise in 2009, an impressive 5% increase compared to 2008. This figure is expected to rise to 1.65 million in 2010. Impressive figures indeed bearing in mind the difficult economic climate in which we find ourselves. Value and quality are the key drivers in this success story. The all-inclusive nature of cruising and the very high standards of quality, innovation and customer service have made cruising a compelling and mainstream holiday choice.
In September, the second National Cruise Week took place, organised by the PSA’s sister company ACE, the Association of Cruise Experts. Travel agents the length and breadth of the country laid on events ranging from beach parties to champagne receptions, all aimed at growing still further the number of people taking a cruise holiday.
Interest in cruise has never been greater, particularly as we are about the witness the arrival of the largest ever cruise ship, Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas. Described as an ‘architectural marvel at sea’, the ship will span 16 decks, encompass 220,000 gross registered tons, carry 5,400 guests and feature 2,700 staterooms.
She will be the first ship to tout the cruise line’s new neighbourhood concept of seven distinct themed areas which include Central Park, Boardwalk and the Royal Promenade.
More on this and other news in Sea Breezes Magazine - December 2009 Issue