What can cruise consumers can expect in 2013? More changes to the traditional cruising experience based on passengers feedback to the cruise lines directly or report to travel professionals.
From more cabin amenities to truly all-inclusive cruise packages with everything from shore excursions to airfare included, customers are driving cruise lines to change the way they want to cruise in the future. There are 14 new river ships on order right now, the cruise industry continues to exceed expectations and add more amenities & services into the ships for the clients overall satisfaction.
1. Cruise lines becoming all-inclusive. The luxury lines lead the way with the most inclusive packages with amenities like airfare and pre/post-hotel stays. Regent Seven Seas and Seabourn currently offer the most all-inclusive packages.
2. Demand swells for river cruises. Fourteen new ships are slated for 2013, including cruising on the mighty Mississippi. Some examples: Viking River has ordered 10 more ships and in 2014 Uniworld Boutique River Cruises will be launching a new Super Ship, the S.S. Catherine, on the Rhône and Saône rivers in Burgundy and Provence.
3. Travelers want to see, not hear. To that end and because we are squarely in the middle of the digital age, consumer demand is calling for easy access to video footage of the lines and cruise destinations. Cruise Lines and Travel Agencies have started adding a video library to their websites so travel consumers can see actual footage of the ships they are considering for future voyages.
4. Cruise lines bring ship experiences to land. Celebrity recently chose the port of San Francisco as the site of the first ever cruise line pop-up restaurant. Choosing the Stable Café in the Mission District as its base of operations, Celebrity brought an “earth-and-sea” theme to the public with Celebrity’s Director of Culinary Operations, James Beard-featured chef John Suley.
5. Giving back. Now more than ever, the cruise lines are making impressive contributions to improving our world, with involvement in green initiatives, volunteer work and charitable contributions. Some recent noteworthy examples are Disney’s new global paper policy and FCCA member lines holiday deliveries.
6. Onboard entertainment unique partnerships. The cruise lines are becoming more creative and thinking outside the box with entertainment.
7. Over-the-top accommodations
Families can spend more time together in their loft suites and private concierge areas and in private areas with such fun activities as miniature golf courses on the ships.