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Cruise trends: cruise takes a new direction

Author: Vicky Mayer

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A new study shows how the UK cruise industry is innovating, diversifying and attracting new holidaymakers

Doesn’t it feel good to be part of a growing trend? A recent report from the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) has revealed an exciting snapshot of the habits of British cruise holidaymakers – both regulars and those new to cruise. This is how we’re cruising:

We’re cruising more. In 2022, British and Irish holidaymakers took around 1.7 million cruises, up a whopping 479,000 on the previous year.

We’re still mad about the Med. With more than 38 per cent of cruise passengers travelling there in 2022, the Mediterranean remains well ahead of northern Europe (29 per cent) and the Caribbean (10 per cent) as British cruisers’ destination of choice.

Family cruise holidays of all ages are on the up. Credit: Shutterstock

Family cruising is on the up. More than a quarter of guests travelled in a family group of three or more generations

Cruising is for all ages. The average age of UK and Irish cruise guests last year was 55, although more than a quarter of guests travelled in a family group consisting of three or more generations.

Once isn’t enough. Eighty-five per cent of cruise passengers say they intend to cruise again, and 60 per cent say they will set sail within the next two years.

Non-cruisers are keen to get on board. Of those polled who had never cruised, 70 per cent said they would consider a cruise in the next few years – which shows that more people are open to trying a cruise than ever before.

We want to take sustainable cruises. With LNG engines, battery packs and even wind power (see elsewhere in this issue), cruise lines are going green – and it seems they are responding to customer demand. Among British passengers who sailed last year, 76 per cent said they were ‘more’ or ‘much more’ aware of environmental and sustainable tourism than previously.

About Vicky Mayer

Vicky began her career working on young women’s magazines before moving on to TV and entertainment titles. Her passion, though, has always been travel, so as Editor of World of Cruising, she combines her love of magazines with the chance to shout about cruise holidays around the world.