It’s no secret the cruise industry is booming but people’s desire to tick off ‘bucket list’ experiences is driving another wave of growth.
Intrepid travellers are spending more cash and seeking out new adventure-filled destinations, according to new research.
Alaska reigns supreme as the fastest growing choice for expedition voyages with almost two thirds of travel agents reporting booming demand. The north American state accounts for eight out of 10 bookings for adventure travel.
Bucket lists – or things to do before you die – are all the rage among the millennial generation.
“Cruise travel is an easy, convenient way to fill bucket list adventures so it comes as no surprise travel agents are citing this key motivator for an uptick in cruise bookings,” said Cindy D’Aoust, president and CEO of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), which produced the report.
“Many have adventure travel on those bucket lists and as it gains in popularity so will key destinations filled with exciting exploration opportunities such as Alaska.”
Travel agents have revealed an increase in cruises booked to Alaska.
Key findings of the Travel Agent Cruise Industry Outlook Report include:
• Sixty-two per cent of agents revealed an increase in cruises booked to Alaska. Other destinations of choice include the Galapagos Islands (59 per cent), the South Pacific (51 per cent) and Antarctica (43 per cent).
• Adventurers of all ages are booking cruises. More than a third of agents report that travellers aged 30-49 have expressed increased interest over the past two years.
• Three quarters of agents surveyed reported an increase in cruise spending. Some of this is from passengers adding more land-based excursions to their itinerary, as well as pre- and post-cruise experiences.
River cruises also continue to rise in popularity with 75 per cent of travel agents reporting increased bookings. Six out of ten agents say they are seeing an upswing in customer requests for mega ships, especially from cruisers hoping to travel on a brand new ship.
Agents also say there is growing interest for large ships (53 per cent), mid-sized ships (52 per cent), and ocean liners (48 per cent).
Passengers are looking for unique and exclusive experiences (92 per cent), exotic itineraries (90 per cent), wildlife (87 per cent), enrichment and education (84 per cent) and thrill seeking (61 per cent).
The full report is available at: http://www.cruising.org/TA-Outlook