UPPING the colour and gaudy factors, Norwegian Cruise Line marked its return to this region after 15 years being adrift outside of Asia’s waters.
The Norwegian Star was in town recently, marking its return to Asia, with its eye-blistering interiors shouting for attention, especially for travellers from China.
The ship will sail between Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand and is “a small part of Norwegian Cruise Line’s commitment to the Asian region” according to Steve Odell, Managing Director Asia Pacific of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH).
Cruising has been on the rise since 2008, probably a result of the Baby Boomers easing up on work and wanting to relax. The opening up of China also helped to create a large niche market.
The rise of Millennials and Generation X taking to the water is also significantly adding to the demand.
In 2009, cruise ships carried 17.8 million passengers worldwide, reported the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA).
That number has risen like the tide to 21 million in 2012, and is expected to hit 25.3 million this year, according to CLIA’s 2017 Cruise Industry Outlook.
New Ships On The Water
The CLIA report says there are 26 new ships on order in 2017, with a total investment of more than US$6.8 billion. In the next decade, a further 71 ships will be launched, boosting the capacity by more than 200,000 berths.
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That’s a lot of people at sea, with a noticeable increase in demand for river and expedition cruises.
NCLH also announced the launch of Norwegian Joy, its first ship built specifically for the China market and customized to suit their unique tastes. It will be based in Shanghai and Tianjin.
Norwegian Jewel will be journeying to the Asia Pacific region from November 2017, based in Australia.
NCLH has a fleet of 24 ships, boasting around 46,500 berths. New ships are in the works till 2020.