A recent survey conducted by the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) showed that for the majority of 378 travel agents surveyed, the Canada/New England region represents just 10 percent or less of their business, according to Christine Duffy, president and CEO of CLIA.
Duffy went on to note that of those agents, 35 percent said the region is a “growing opportunity” while 55 percent added that they saw stable sales.
Unsurprisingly, 75.1 percent of those agents said there is “moderate or significant” potential for the region to grow as a market, added Duffy, speaking at the 2012 Cruise Canada New England Symposium in Quebec City.
To grow the region, there will need to be new ports and itineraries, a longer cruise season, additional cruise lines in the market, and more marketing and promotion of the destination to travel agents and consumers, explained Duffy.
Increasing airlift costs to Europe could serve as a driver to a summer season, said Duffy, adding the summer months could provide a “significant opportunity” for the region.
In 2012, the total cruise capacity sailing to Canada/New England is approximately 277,000 passengers on 33 different ships, compared to 278,000 last year and 48,000 in 1992, according to the 2012 Cruise Industry News Annual Report.