“It is World Travel Market this week in London, when the capital becomes the focus of the international travel industry. And just like all modern industries the travel sector is undergoing changes and developments that reflect a changing World. The tech-savvy consumer is better connected and more widely informed meaning that old styles of doing business are rapidly changing. The on-going ‘Arab Spring’ continues to ensure a focus on that area both in terms of the region as a tourist source market and as a holiday destination.
In cruising the traditional markets of North America and the UK are seeing continued growth in passenger numbers and continue to be the biggest source markets in our industry. However attention is turning further afield for the future rapid growth in cruise passenger numbers. Australia shows extraordinary rates of growth as a source market – a reflection of the potential that exists in less traditional emerging markets too.
And it is China that looks set to be the next big rising star. Indeed it is predicted that China will become the second largest cruise source market by 2017 – incredible growth in a country where cruising was almost un-heard of just a few years ago. Companies like Royal Caribbean and Carnival have worked hard to grow awareness – and now the whole cruise sector looks set to benefit as the Chinese slowly start to realise the joys of a cruise holiday.”