CLIA Report Signals a Bright Future for the Cruise Industry

Written by: Amanda Bailey on February 18, 2016

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Travel agents can rest assured: sunny skies lie ahead for the cruise industry.

Earlier this month, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) released the Travel Agent Cruise Industry Outlook Report, which revealed that both the number of cruise passengers and the amount spent on cruises is expected to rise in 2016.

The report, which was conducted at the end of 2015, projected that 24 million people would cruise this year, up from 23 million last year. It also found that among all vacation options, the two segments with the greatest increase were ocean cruises (36% increase) and river cruises (28%).

Travel agents agree with this positive outlook, as 83% say they anticipate their cruise sales growing in 2016.

Check out a few other promising stats from CLIA’s report:

  • 77% of travel agents expect spending on cruises to increase in 2016.
  • The higher demand is being met with new ships; 27 new vessels are expected to sail just this year, and more than $25 billion is being invested in new builds between now and 2020.
  • Today’s average cruiser is 49 years old, married, employed full-time and has an income of $114,000.
  • The regions with the most anticipated cruise growth are Alaska (73%), the Caribbean (52%) and Canada/New England (42%). Travel agents believe that the cost and hassle of international flying is causing more travelers to opt for more local or regional cruises.

One major factor in the growth of cruising is its appeal to all ages. When asked what trends are having the most impact on their businesses, travel agents point out an increase in groups and families, including multi-generational families, who are cruising together.

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According to CLIA, this signals a strong future for the cruise industry because younger generations are experiencing cruising and forming an enduring interest in taking cruise trips.

Travel agents will continue to advise consumers on the advantages of cruising, paving the way for even more growth.

“As the cruise industry continues to grow, the travel agent community is invaluable in helping us understand the strength of the business and perceptions in the marketplace,” said Cindy D’Aoust, Acting CEO of CLIA in a press release.

There is more to booking a cruise than most people anticipate, which is why a travel agent’s skills and first-hand knowledge have become so valuable. Even without any formal travel agent training, you can become a part of this thriving industry!

If you’d like to become a travel agent, fill out the form on the right or call 1-888-611-1220 to receive our free travel agent startup packet.