RCL predicts bumper 2016 Europe ocean cruising season

first_imgRoyal CaribbeanRCL predicts bumper 2016 Europe ocean cruising seasonSister cruise lines Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Club Cruises are preparing for a bumper Europe 2016 season, together offering 16 of the most modern and innovative cruise ships to sail Europe.Over 25,000 Australians and New Zealanders will sail on the company’s trifecta of brands over 230 cruises in Europe. In 2008, that figure was closer to 5,000 guests – a huge five-fold increase that is testament to the strength of the demand for the world’s most modern cruise ships.Those cruise ships will include the world’s newest and biggest megaliners, Harmony of the Seas and Ovation of the Seas for Royal Caribbean; four award-winning Solstice Class ships for Celebrity Cruises; and Azamara Club Cruises’ two boutique ships, sailing in Europe for the first time since their multimillion dollar bow-to-stern refurbishments.Royal Caribbean’s nine Europe-based ships will call at 86 different ports during 119 sailings; Celebrity Cruises’ five ships will call at 92 different ports during 83 voyages; and Azamara Club Cruises’ two boutique sized cruise ships will call at an impressive 106 different ports during just 28 cruises.“Europe has very much retained its status as one of Australia’s favourite holiday destinations and as we commit our very best ships to the region, we’re seeing strong interest from Aussie travellers making plans to return in 2016.  As well as having solid advance bookings, we are also experiencing healthy late demand for cruises leaving in the next two to three months,” said Adam Armstrong, managing director, RCL Cruises Australasia.Globally, Europe is the number two cruise destination in the world – second only to the Caribbean – having received 5.85 million cruise passengers in 2014. Of those, one million came from outside Europe and almost 100,000 were from Australia. After the South Pacific and New Zealand, Europe is Australians’ third most popular overseas ocean cruise destination.“Pre-booking an inclusive European holiday like a cruise makes very good sense. You can reserve your cabin with only a nominal deposit, locking in the price in Australian dollars and protecting yourself against currency fluctuations,” Armstrong continued.  “Plus, there are still some excellent early-bird flight deals available, following the second release from many leading carriers that service a range of Australia-Europe routes.“A cruise can provide the most relaxing holiday option for a European expedition, allowing travellers to experience multiple destinations in one trip, in comfort and style. Unpack just once and let someone else look after the cleaning, cooking, child-minding and entertainment. Cruising is one of the most affordable ways to experience Europe, with your fare including all accommodation, main meals, transport, entertainment and more. Plus each ship boasts incredible features and a vast array of activities for everyone to enjoy, such as numerous dining options, lounges and bars, shops, gym, spa facilities and kids clubs.”The most popular European destinations for Australian travellers on Royal Caribbean, Celebrity or Azamara include Naples, Italy; St Petersburg, Russia and Santorini, Greece.  The most popular embarkation port is Rome, which is the starting destination for a third of Australians choosing an RCL Cruises Europe itinerary, followed by Venice at 22% and Barcelona at 17% – all focused on Mediterranean itineraries. Southampton, predominantly servicing the Baltic Sea, follows close behind at 10%.On the ground in Europe, RCL’s trifecta of brands pride themselves on delivering shore excursion experiences that go beyond the basic city tour. Royal Caribbean Cruise LineSource = Royal Caribbean Cruise Linelast_img

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