While Carnival Cruise Lines is deploying two ships in Europe next year and targeting the UK market, it is not just because Europeans have discovered the brand, but also to fill a gap that Carnival Corporation opened in the UK when Ocean Village was shut down.
With Ocean Village out of service, the door was opened to Royal Caribbean, MSC and Norwegian to step in to fill the contemporary (youthful) market demand, according to sources familiar with the situation.
All of Carnival Corporation’s brands in the UK were premium and upscale, including Princess, P&O Cruises and Cunard Line.
Ocean Village had been profitable during the summer seasons, but the winter programs were not, hence the decision was made to shut the brand down.
Meanwhile, Royal Caribbean is fighting back, and following Carnival’s announcements, said it will have two ships sailing from the UK in 2013.