Agents optimistic about selling cruises in 2012

Clients in the US are booking cruises for next year – and the year after

Cruise agents are upbeat about selling cruises in 2012, despite the fact that last year a significant proportion of clients and groups who booked 2011 cruises ahead ended up cancelling before they paid their deposits. Many clients didn’t go through with the cruise they’d booked because of economic concerns about the future. Agents report that clients continue to be worried about the economy but are still going – it’s just that they’re not getting the ocean-view cabins this time. Most clients who are booking in the US want to stay closer to home this year. They want to cruise out of Florida ports that they can drive to rather than pay for air tickets and expensive baggage fees.
Some cruise agents are actually bullish about the future and are reporting more clients than usual for 2012 and some even booking ahead for 2013. Many people in arid states like Texas are desperate for cooler, watery climates such as Alaska. River cruises that have recently upgraded their products are also in demand.
Travel Weekly
[pictured: Royal Caribbean in Alaska]