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Cruise passenger figures surpass original estimates
Posted on 26/05/2017

EconomyJamaica

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Cruise holidays are more popular than ever. New figures show that that there were a total of 24.7 million cruise passengers in 2016 exceeding the previous expectations of 24.4 million.

Carribean named the top destination

Carribean named the top destination
© nan728/123RF

The continuing growth in the cruise industry is credited to the construction of new ships and the emerging Asian market which offers further expansion opportunities.

The Cruise Line International Association affirmed that "Much of the industry's growth can be attributed to the continuing development of the Asian market, with ocean capacity in the region rising to 9.2% in 2016, a 38% increase from 2015.

"The increased capacity, combined with travelers in this region going on shorter, and more frequent cruises, has kept this marketplace at the top of emerging markets within the cruise industry."

Indeed, last year saw the construction of 9 new ocean ships and 17 new river vessels. So, overall there are now 458 new ships which offer up places for an extra 28,000 passengers.

The Caribbean was by far the most popular cruise destination of 2016 with official figures putting it way ahead of others at 35 percent. It was then followed by the Mediterranean at 18.3 percent, Asia at 9.2 percent and cruises to the Pacific Ocean and around Australia/ New Zealand were at 6.1 percent. Trailing behind were Alaska and South America, these destinations were less popular at 4.2 and 2.5 percent respectively.

With the summer holiday season approaching and people begining to book their holidays, market experts remain optimistic. The CLIA expect that this year will be even more successful with the figure predicted to be up to 25.8 million passengers.

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