The latest Travel Agent Cruise Industry Outlook Report indicated that currently Alaska and the Caribbean are the hottest cruise destinations, while cruisers are also showing interest in Cuba.
CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association) released the report that also indicated that cruise sales were consistently on the rise for about 80% agents surveyed when compared to 2017. The report found the majority of agents were still booking trips to Caribbean despite last year's hurricanes.
- Alaska tops the list of the hottest cruise destinations and is currently more popular than in 2017. 64% of agents said Alaska was a growth market, compared to 57% a year prior. The trend is similar to findings from the first quarterly global report of CLIA showing that the volume of cruise passengers sailing to Alaska was up by around 15% in 2017.
- More than 40% of agents reported an uptick in interest in sailing to Cuba. Nearly 50% of travel agents said clients were interested in Cuba because it's a new and exotic destination.
- Even though 65% of travel agents said the hurricanes impacted Caribbean business, 86% still reported their clients were booking voyages to the region with more than 75% of travel agents stating customers were taking advantage of pricing discounts.
Within the last 12 months travel agents have seen consistent sales growth. More than 40% noted that cruise business was up by more than 10% this year. Some factors that attribute to the increasing popularity of cruise industry include: rise in interest in river cruising, a variety of new ships, constant ship upgrades, the ease of travel for multi-generational groups.
About 80% of cruisers have increased vacation spending compared to 2017.