Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) issued a new report, indicating that Australia’s cruise industry continued its growth trajectory hitting record highs in 2016, with annual ocean cruise passenger numbers surging by 21 percent to a record 1,281,159. The result positions Australia at the top of the global cruise industry for market penetration.
The report can be summarized into the following key findings:
- Australian ocean cruise passenger numbers increased by 222,378 – the largest rise in passenger numbers on record, rising 21 percent to 1,281,159 ocean cruise passengers from 1,058,781 in 2015
- Australia maintains its position as the cruise market with the highest population penetration, with the equivalent of 5.3 percent of the Australian population taking a cruise
- Australia’s growth rate of 21 per cent was surpassed only by the emerging market of China, and then New Zealand – albeit a much smaller market. Australia once again performed well ahead of established markets such as Germany (11.3 percent growth), UK and Ireland (5.6 per cent growth) and USA/ Canada (5.7 per cent growth)
- Domestic cruising continues to surge fuelling the growth of Australian passenger numbers, with local cruisers growing by 23.4 per cent from 269,915 in 2015 to 332,979 in 2016.
- The South Pacific maintained its position as Australia’s favourite cruise destination attracting more than 42 percent of ocean cruise passengers (542,825)
- New Zealand pulled ahead of Europe in 2016 as Australia’s third most popular destination overall, attracting 8.3 percent of passengers (106,737)
- While Alaska saw a 25.5 per cent increase (41.084), other long-haul fly-cruise destinations experienced a fall in 2016, with Europe falling by 11.8 per cent and Asia by 10.1 percent
- Short break cruises of four days or less leapt in popularity, growing by 59.7 per cent in 2016, while cruises of 22+ days rose by more than 20 percent
- The majority (89.3 per cent) of all Australians cruising in 2016 took a cruise of 14 days or less
- Australians spent an estimated 12 million days at sea in 2016, with an average ocean cruise length of 9.4 days
- Australia was the fifth largest source market in the world in 2016 accounting for 5.2 percent of global cruise passengers
Further details may be found by reading the full report: