CruiseCompete has released its Cruise Index and CruiseTrends reports for the month of December 2011.

The CruiseCompete Cruise Index for December was 148, a 1.4% increase from November, and up 2.5% compared to December 2010. All regional indices saw an increase from November except for Alaska, which was down by 1.2%.

The CruiseCompete Cruise Index  is calculated based on the average daily per-passenger (double occupancy) cost for the lowest-priced oceanview cabin category on a seven-night cruise on the six largest North American cruise lines. See details and indices by region and Monthly Historical Cruise Prices. 

The following comprises a sampling of the CruiseTrends report for December 2011. To see more topics and data, please visit CruiseCompete’s Press Room or click on December 2011. 

For purposes of the CruiseTrends report, cruise lines recognized as premium or contemporary are grouped together as premium/contemporary. 

Most Popular Cruise Lines
(Based on the total number of quote requests for each cruise line in the given month)
1. Premium/Contemporary: Carnival Cruise Line
2. Luxury: Cunard (replacing Oceania Cruises last month)
3. River Cruises: Viking River Cruises 

In second place is Royal Caribbean International for premium/contemporary, Oceania for luxury and Avalon Waterways for river cruises.

Most Popular Cruise Ships
(Based on the total number of quote requests for each ship)
1. Premium/Contemporary: Ruby Princess (changed from Crown Princess last month)
2. Luxury: Queen Mary 2 (replacing Oceania Marina from last month)
3. River: American Queen (changed from MS Amalegro last month) 

Next in popularity are the Norwegian Gem for premium/contemporary, Oceania Marina for luxury, and the Viking Emerald for river.

Most Popular Cruise Regions
(Based on the total number of quote requests for each region)
1. Premium/Contemporary: Caribbean
2. Luxury: Europe
3. River: Europe 

Next in popularity are North America for premium/contemporary, Caribbean for luxury, and Asia/Far East for river cruises.

Most Popular Cruise Departure Ports
(Based on the total number of quote requests for each departure port)
1. Premium/Contemporary: Fort Lauderdale, FL
2. Luxury: New York, NY (changed from Los Angeles, CA last month)
3. River: Amsterdam, Netherlands (changed from Budapest, Hungary last month) 

Next in popularity are Miami, FL for premium/contemporary, Southampton, UK for luxury, and Budapest, Hungary for River.

Most Popular Cruise Ports Visited
(Based on the total number of quote requests for each port visited during cruise itineraries, excluding departure ports)
1. Premium/Contemporary: Cozumel, Mexico
2. Luxury: Kusadasi, Turkey (replacing Gustavia, St. Barts from last month)
3. River: Cologne, Germany (replacing Vienna , Austria from last month) 

Next in popularity are Nassau, Bahamas for premium/contemporary, Gustavia, St. Barts for luxury, and Regensburg, Germany for river cruises.  

Most Popular Countries Visited
(Based on the total number of quote requests for each country visited during cruise itineraries, excluding countries of departure)
1. Premium/Contemporary: Bahamas
2. Luxury: Greece (replacing United States from last month)
3. River: Germany 

Second are Mexico for premium/contemporary, Italy for luxury, and France for river cruises.

Hottest Months for Cruising
(Based on the most requested months)
1. Premium/Contemporary: December 2011
2. Luxury: December 2011
3. River: September 2012 (replacing December 2012 last month)

Other data available at the December 2011 CruiseTrends report.

• Number of cabins requested
• Most popular cruise itinerary lengths
• Travel insurance requested
• Cruise line past passenger status requested
• Booking window of time