Planning A Summer Cruise? We’ve Got Some Bad News…

As summer and fall vacation planning hits full swing, many hopeful cruisers might find themselves struggling to secure a cabin.

According to Jason Liberty, CEO of Royal Caribbean Group, a leading force in the cruise industry, nearly 90% of all cabins across their fleets are already booked for the 2024 sailings.

The demand for cruise vacations has been rising at an astounding rate. The first four months of 2024 have seen bookings surpass last year’s figures, even with significantly fewer cabins available.

This trend is not limited to Royal Caribbean, as other major cruise lines such as Carnival Corporation and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings have reported similar spikes in demand.

Icon of the Seas arriving at Perfect Day at Cococay

The launch of Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas in January contributed to this surge. The ship’s debut, coupled with strong bookings across all key itineraries and ship classes, indicates a growing appeal of cruise vacations, especially among North American travelers who make up 80% of this year’s bookings.

This upswing in interest is also driven by an influx of first-time cruisers, often referred to as the “new to cruise” market, which has grown by 16% year over year.

The allure of cruising appears to be resonating well with the younger generations, as nearly half of all guests now are millennials or younger.

Economically, the situation is also favorable. Despite recent fare increases, cruising remains a highly attractive option compared to land-based vacations.

Liberty attributes this to a robust economy, where strong labor markets and stabilizing inflation empower consumers to prioritize spending on travel experiences.

As the year progresses, with limited cabin availability and rising prices, the cruise industry looks set to enjoy one of its most successful years yet. For those still looking to book a cruise, acting swiftly seems to be the best course of action.

To secure a great deal on a cruise, we recommend booking as early as possible. This not only guarantees availability but often also locks in more favorable rates.

Being flexible with when and where you go on your cruise can help you find good deals. If you can change your trip dates or places a little bit, you might find new chances for fun and savings.

Also, think about asking a travel agent for help. They know how to find the best deals and can make booking easier.

Plus, if you go on a cruise just before or after the busiest times, you might find lower prices and fewer people, making your trip even better.

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