Ready to join the cruise revolution?

Have you been on a cruise recently? If not, there’s a good chance you soon will be.

In 2010 there was such a rush of Australians to go cruising that the CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association of Australasia) - who have just released the cruising data for 2014 - predicted that there could two million Australians taking a cruise in 2020. Last year more than a million of us went on a cruise. The 20 per cent annual boom in tourism is even more remarkable when looking back to the mere 158,415 cruisers we had in 2004. Now we have more than that number cruising in Australian waters alone.

Where is everyone going?
Our most popular overseas destination is still New Zealand. Indonesia (mainly Bali) comes in second place. Nearly 400,000 Australian’s are seeking the islands and sunshine of the South Pacific. Then it’s NZ, Europe and river cruising which is a very popular option and of course many other destinations world-wide.

The hottest trend is river cruising in mainly European and Asian locations. This grew by 62 per cent from 2013 to 2014. There were also 27,000 more Australians cruising the rivers of Europe in 2014 than there was the year before.

More Australian’s cruise per capita than any other nation
While Americans make up more than half the world’s cruisers the proportion of Australians taking a cruise is the highest of any nation in the world. Australians are heading to the Caribbean in record numbers.

While there is still a lingering perception that cruising is mainly for slightly older people or for groups of young footy teams, the reality is that cruising is attracting people across all age groups. In fact, there are more under 40s cruising than over 65s. The reality is cruising is a great option at any age.

Local cruise ports
Sydney and Brisbane are the two main cruising states and are also the only two cities where ships are permanently based, rather than merely being visited as part of a larger cruise. The issue of overnight pollution over Sydney Harbour was a significant issue in the recent NSW election and the NSW Port Authority recently revealed that finding a solution, probably in low-sulphur fuel, is a high priority.

It also revealed that the recent upgrade to the Overseas Passenger Terminal at Circular Quay is allowing the passengers from increasingly-large ships, with up to 4000 passengers, to move through more readily. There is also a curfew on cruising ships leaving the OPT during the 4.30pm to 7pm peak ferry period.

Looking for your next dream cruise? Exploring Norway by luxury liner is a great way to travel. Read more here

We will be featuring more popular cruise destinations and we’d love to hear about your experiences and your thoughts on the trends in cruising. Join our conversation below…