Cruise holidays continue to grow in popularity around the world, with the average passenger age now sitting at around 47 years old, and more ships visiting more destinations than ever before. If you’re thinking about trying a cruise holiday, or you’re planning your next one, here are some of the emerging trends to consider.
Cruise lines are falling over themselves to ensure that their new vessels offer something special to potential passengers, whether it’s bigger and more luxurious ships, unique facilities such as water parks or skydiving simulators, or partnerships with wellness experts and celebrity chefs. Many cruise lines are also looking to minimise their environmental impact with innovations such as solar panels and engines powered by Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).
Cruises are an easy and stress-free way to ensure that the entire family, from your great aunt to the newest and littlest member, can enjoy a holiday together, particularly at festive times of year – no-one has to assume responsibility for delivering a well-cooked turkey or ensuring there’s enough Champagne on ice. An increasing number of cruise lines now offer amazing family rooms – one ship launched earlier this year even features a suite that comes furnished with a private 3D cinema and a slide to connect its two levels! A variety of room types on a single ship means everyone can enjoy a holiday that’s tailored to their individual needs and budget. Add to this a range of activities to suit young and old, plus a ready supply of babysitters, and you have a dream holiday for the whole clan.
By contrast, demand continues to increase from solo travellers – those who either by choice or necessity are holidaying alone – and cruise companies are gradually making changes to better accommodate them. Some vessels now feature cabins that are specifically designed for those travelling individually, while others offer reduced single supplements on selected sailings. Once aboard, many ships also feature functions and meet-ups to connect solo travellers, so that it’s easy to find company should you so wish.
A cruise holiday can be a fantastic way to visit a destination that you wouldn’t otherwise consider due to its remoteness or lack of facilities. From the cold waters of Antarctica to the remote atolls of the Seychelles; from the wildlife of the Galapagos to the tribes of New Guinea: whatever corner of the world appeals, you’re likely to find an expedition cruise to take you there in comfort. Expedition cruises are also accompanied by experts who are happy to answer as many questions as you can dream up, to ensure that your experience is both enlightening and engaging.
With the popularity of wellness holidays on the increase, it’s only natural that cruise companies should want to jump on that band wagon, and many are doing it very well. Most cruise ships offer some form of fitness facilities, from gyms and yoga studios to running tracks and basketball courts, but it’s now possible to select a cruise itinerary that has a particular focus on wellness: think nutritionist-approved menus, Pilates classes, meditation sessions and mindfulness seminars. Shore excursions may also have a wellness focus, such as guided hiking on the Sorrentine Peninsula or mountain biking in the hills of Corfu.
These are just some of the emerging trends in cruise holidays – your personal travel manager can help you find the option that’s right for you.