The cruise ship industry continuously breaks the record one after another. The official figures provided by CLIA – Cruise Line International Association – show the excellent status in cruise industry in the world level.
As a representative of the cruise companies around the world, the association has declared the record figure of 28.5 million passengers in the world in 2018, with a growth of 7% compared to the previous year.
According to the forecasts, the new record of the cruise passengers will reach 30 million by the end of 2019. The CLIA also expects to reach 40 million passengers in 2028. Upon a new record every year, it is the sign of constant growth in the cruise industry.
Europe plays a central role with 7.17 million cruise passengers in 2018, a 3.3% growth compared to 2017. There were among more than 4 million on board ships sailing for the Mediterranean. In particular, the growth of the eastern Mediterranean increased significantly as much as 8.5% which equals to 746 thousand passengers. Those are the figures that indicate a return of confidence for Europe that is very dependent on Italy and especially Venice, which, as a homeport, collects almost all of the Adriatic (60% of the eastern Mediterranean traffic).
There is a passenger flows growth also in other areas, such as the Canary Islands (+9.6%) and the Baltic (+9%). A stable growth (+1.2%) of the central and western Mediterranean remains in the most popular destinations of Europe with a total of 2.27 million passengers. Meanwhile, Northern Europe recorded a significant +4.8% and a total of 1.43 million cruise passengers.
If we consider that the cruise industry today accounts for about 2% of the total 1.4 billion tourists traveling around the world each year, it is reasonable to expect the further important growth margins. And indeed, it is the type of tourism that has been in existence for just over three decades and has already passed from 3 to almost 30 million passengers a year.
“It is not surprising that the trend of cruise tourism is parallel to the growth of the international one. The cruises make it more accessible to travel around the world, as evidenced by the passenger figures recorded in 2018,” explains Kelly Craighead, president and CEO of CLIA, “thanks to a renewed interest in the Mediterranean and new itineraries, in particular for those who are in love of adventurous travel, tourists are attracted to cruises more than ever. ”