23 million passengers are expected to sail on cruise ships in 2015, a four-percent increase over 2014 estimates of 22.1 million, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) predicts in its annual State of the Cruise Industry Report.
61 percent of North American CLIA-certified travel agents have reported an increase in 2015 travel bookings over this time last year.
CLIA’s member cruise lines have nearly 1,000 ports of call in their itineraries, with the latest additions targeting the fast-growing Asian market. In 2015, 52 ships will provide 1,065 Asian cruises with capacity for 2.17 million passengers.
CLIA also revealed that member cruise lines are scheduled to debut 22 new ocean, river and specialty ships in 2015 for a total investment of more than USD 4 billion.
In 2013, the global economic output of the cruise industry was more than USD 117 billion; the industry supported nearly 900,000 jobs and contributed to USD 38 billion in wages.