Despite the negative press that has been heaped upon the cruise industry of late, all in response to many cruise lines’ own responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, new data suggests there’s been a surge in cruise holiday bookings for 2021.
According to Yahoo Finance, online cruise marketplace CruiseCompete.com has experienced a whopping 40% rise in bookings for 2021 over bookings made in 2019.
“People are still booking cruises and are anxious to sail again when this is all over,” CruiseCompete president Heidi Allison said.
CruiseCompete says customers whose 2020 trips were cancelled accounted for just one in ten (11%) bookings for next year, while the most popular cruise line was Royal Caribbean.
A report by financial analyst UBS from 31 March, support this possible increase in bookings.
According to UBS, March bookings rose year-on-year by 9%, with voyages to Asia and Alaska showing the highest numbers and Mediterranean cruises the only major region down over the past month.
Generous refund policies could be responsible for luring passengers to book again.
“Cruise Seller says that 76 per cent of those who have cancelled their cruises are taking the option for a future cruise credit of 125 per cent of the value, rather than getting 100 per cent refunded today,” the report states.
In contrast to this, the vast majority (83%) of respondents in a Yahoo Finance poll of 1,740 readers said that they would not travel on cruises for fear of falling ill, while only one in six (17%) said they would still cruise.
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