Asian cruises set to be 2014 travel trend


London-based marketing intelligence firm Euromonitor International released its annual Global Trends Report earlier this week. Included in the top travel trends for 2014 were cruises in Asia, an option that is becoming increasingly popular with travellers who wish to explore the East by sea.

 The report encourages travellers to opt for cruises in and around Asia and the trend seems to point at the Chinese cruise market massively expanding between now and 2017. Tourism operators can expect the Asian cruise market to boom in the next 12 months and it’s currently on track to become the second largest water-based industry in the world, beaten only by the U.S.

Royal Caribbean International is one of the top operators at present and offers 5 Voyager-class cruise ships that travel to destinations across Asia on an ongoing basis. Other cruise operators are vying to offer similar services and capitalise on a trend that allows travellers to explore Asia from a different perspective. Carnival, one of the world’s most recognised cruise ship brands predicts that its Asian operation will welcome at least 7 million passengers by 2020 and American-owned Princess Cruises expects that Asia will represent at least 1 in 5 cruisers by the same time.

Cruise ships are veritable floating hotels and offer a more relaxed mode of transport for anyone seeking a less frenetic alternative to flying, or who wishes to enjoy a water-based holiday. For travel operators in Asia the news of cruises becoming a trend in 2014 is like hitting the jackpot at as air travel has become increasingly congested and the huge demand for availability puts strain on the industry.

The only impediment to China’s growth in the cruise ship industry is the lack of terminals available at present, but this is being rectified and industry experts estimate that this drawback will be alleviated by mid 2015. Many large cruise operators already offer cruises in and around Asia and the volume of operators is expected to steadily increase as more ports are opened.

The growing availability of Asian cruises expands the inter-continental travel network and ensures easy passage and extended options for travellers. By predicting Asian cruises as a trend for 2014, Euromonitor International’s forecast also highlights global confidence in the continents continuing growth within the travel industry.

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