BBC SCOTLAND BACKGROUND BRIEFING
-Latest PSA industry figures point to 1.72m Brits taking an ocean cruise in 2012
-Over 2% growth outlook predicted in 2013 to 1.76m UK cruises
-Over $12 billion of long term new cruise ship investment planned for 2013-15
Latest UK cruise industry figures released by the Passenger Shipping Association (PSA) estimate that 1.72m Brits will take an ocean cruise this year, 20,000 passengers more than the 1.7m carried in 2011.
This has been achieved despite a challenging year for the industry following the January Concordia incident, and a protracted subdued UK economic climate for consumers that has seen market falls in many other sectors of the holiday industry.
Some eight out of ten UK cruise sales come through Britain’s travel agents, spearheaded by those specially trained to advise on cruise options through the Association of Cruise Experts (ACE).
As a sign of continued confidence, nearly $5 billion has been invested globally by the industry in six major new cruise ships launched this year, and a further $3.2billion will be spent on six more ships scheduled to enter service next year *.
Long term orders stretch out at an even higher level to 2015,
representing more than $12bn of investment in new ships over the next three years alone.
For 2013, the PSA is predicting a growth of more than 2% in UK cruises to 1.76m passengers, on the back of continued investment in new and refurbished cruise ships, a fiercely competitive market, and the continued popularity of ex-UK port cruises.
“There is no doubt that the cruise industry faced a unique set of challenges this year;” said PSA director William Gibbons, “ but our UK figures show that the cruise sector has outperformed the rest of the holiday sector. The sheer diversity of cruises offered by our 41 members, coupled with unrivalled value for money has helped to attract the ‘new to cruise customer’, key to boosting growth within our sector.
The undiminished investment in new ships and product innovation is also encouraging with six new cruise ships commissioned in 2012, and six more are scheduled for launch in each of the next three
years. There is no doubt that value will still be an absolute priority for UK holiday makers in 2013 and a cruise is one of the best ways to have a unique experience whatever your holiday budget.”
* 2012 New ship launches
Company Name TonNAGE Passengers Cost $m
1 Aida Cruises AidaMar 71,000 2,174 562
2 Carnival Cruise Line Carnival Breeze 130,000 3,690 738
3 Costa Cruises Costa Fascinosa 114,200 3,012 725
4 Disney Cruise Line Disney Fantasy 122,000 2,500 850
5 MSC MSC Divina 140,000 3,502 795
6 Oceania Cruises Riviera 65,000 1,260 500
7 Celebrity Cruises Celebrity Reflection 122,000 2,850 798
2013 New ship launches
Company Name Ton Passengers Cost
$m1 MSC MSC Preziosa 139,400 3,478 800
2 Aida Cruises Aid Stella 71,300 2,192 421
3 Compagnie du Ponant Le Soleal 10,700 264 137
4 Hapag Lloyd Europa 2 39,500 516 300
5 Norwegian Cruise Line Norwegian Breakaway 143,500 4,000 834
6 Princess Cruises Royal Princess 139,000 3,600 754
JULIAN BRAY, Media, Aviation, & Travel Expert. Broadcaster & Journalist NUJ EQUITY UK Tel: 01733 345581 (isdn link on application)