A total of 23.2 million global passengers took an ocean cruise in 2015, a 4% rise from 2014 and an increase from the originally predicted 23 million, according to the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA).
Much of the industry’s growth can be attributed to emerging regions of the world. In 2015, Asia experienced the highest year-over-year growth, with a total of two million ocean cruise passengers in 2015 – a 24% rise from 2014. Meanwhile, 1.1 million ocean cruise travellers originated from Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific, marking a 14% jump from 2014.
“The success in 2015 demonstrates the cruise industry's continued strength in the overall travel sector," said Cindy D'Aoust, president and CEO, CLIA. “This is a direct result of the amazing work and commitment of our community of Cruise Lines, Executive Partners and Travel Agencies and Agents. Plus, with the highest satisfaction rates among all leisure travel segments, it reflects that a cruise holiday is the holiday of choice for travellers around the world.”
As a result of steady year-over-year increases, CLIA has modified 2016 expectations and is now predicting 24.2 million travellers will opt for an ocean cruise this year.