Cruise firms targeting growth
Tags: Costa Allegra, Costa Concordia, Costa Cruises, cruies liner, cruise, Gatwick, Indian Ocean, Royal Caribbean, Seychelles, Southampton, Stansted, travelsupermarket, voyages
Travel firms selling cruise liner tickets are slashing prices in an effort to bolster plunging sales, according to new reports.
Although UK cruise companies have been particularly badly hit, experts have pointed out that the interlinked nature of the industry has seen firms across Europe suffer from falling sales figures.
The crisis means travellers can head from UK airports such as Stansted and Gatwick to embark on a cruise around some of the most beautiful parts of the world for a fraction of the normal cost.
“The cruise market is weak because it is trans-European,” said Bob Atkinson of TravelSupermarket.
“If bookings are poor in Spain, Italy and France then the cruise lines aren’t getting the numbers they need to fill cruises, that means more go on sale in Britain.
“Book at short notice and you’ll probably get a great price, with cruise lines also chucking in free flights and on-board spending. Royal Caribbean voyages from Southampton start at £699 and can include $100 of onboard credit. It’s effectively a discount of 20-30%.”
Mr Atkinson went on to point out that the trends affecting the cruise industry could also be indicative of the travel sector as a whole, with people “hedging their bets and spending cautiously”.
The cruise industry has hit the headlines in recent months, after two liners from the same company ran into serious problems at sea. Most recently the Costa Allegra caught fire near the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean, while the Costa Concordia vessel ran aground and capsized, killing at least 25 people. Both ships were operated by Costa Cruises.