Focusing on the Asia/Pacific region, including China and Australia, we are smitten by the enthusiasm of the cruise lines and port executives we have spoken to. China is obviously the big story and promises to drive the industry’s growth into the future. The Chinese market is set on an aggressive growth trajectory with more ships, including newbuilds, being deployed.
P&O is Australia’s home brand, according to Sture Myrmell, president of P&O Cruises Australia. “Australia has seen double digit growth for more than 10 years. We are the backbone of the market and have been driving a lot of that growth, coming up with new products, new types of cruises, new homeports and finding more new customers,” Myrmell said to Cruise Industry News in an exclusive interview.
“I’m in charge of the operation, including everything from product delivery to marine and hotel, port operations, itinerary planning and brand delivery,” said Hernan Zini, chief operating officer of SkySea Cruise Line. “With one ship at this time we can focus solely on the ship, fine-tuning the product for the future, and building the core of the brand as we start our expansion.”
Costa Crociere and Princess Cruises will carry about one million Chinese passengers this year, up from 500,000 in 2015, according to Alan Buckelew, COO of Carnival Corporation, who also has oversight of Carnival Asia. He added that he expects to see a significant percentage increase in 2017 as well, and that the growth will continue (with more Carnival Corp. brand ships being introduced into the market).