CRUISES: AUSTRIA GROWS IN RECORD PACE

Chris Grad - Apr 14, 2014
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The number of the booked cruises in Europe reached its all-time high of 6.4 million in 2013. That corresponds to an increase of 4 percent as opposed to 2012 and a doubling of the European cruiseship market in only eight years. The source market Austria – with an absolute emergence of more than 134,000 passengers in the previous, not at all considered a giant – evolved even stronger. According to the recently completed industry index inquiry for 2013 created by the cruise ship committee of the Austrian Travel Association, a growth of 8.9 percent was recorded, which amounts to almost a three and a half fold volume over 2005.

"134,177 Austrians went on a trip on an open sea cruise ship in the previous year," said Ulli Soukop, Chef of Costa Crociere in Austria and chairman of the Austrian Travel Association Cruiseship Committee. "The cruiseship segment has therefore established itself in Austria as a constant with one of the largest growths in the travel market for years." The Mediterranean cruises are at the top, however, at the same time, the cruises in Northern Europe, in the Baltic Sea; as well as in distant countries such as the United Arab Emirates and the Caribbean, also continue to grow.

With these numbers, the ceiling in the source market Austria regarding cruises has not been reached by a long stretch. Great Britain, as still the largest source market in Europe, has 1.726 million passengers (more than a fourth of the entire European volume), Germany has 1.687 million passengers (plus 9 percent 2013) which is real close behind. If you take the usual 10:1 ratio between the Federal Republic and the Alpine Republic, you will notice the strong potential which still remains in Austria (the current ratio of the cruise ship passengers currently lies at 10:0.8).

The numerous newly built ships should also continue to inspire the demand this year. The Austrian Travel Association Cruiseship Committee, assumes that 2014 will be another strong year. Cruiseship companies such as AIDA Cruises, Costa, FTI Cruises, Hapag-Lloyd Kreuzfahrten, MSC and Caravelle Seereisen belong to the committee.

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