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The Changing Face of Asia's Premium Cruise Market

Posted on 02-Nov-2017 by Administrator

With more and more premium cruise ships now sailing to and from destinations in Asia, this part of the world is experiencing the highest growth rate in the global cruise industry. In 2017, the cruise capacity of the Asian market is estimated to be more than 4.2 million passengers. This is almost three times the capacity in 2013 (1.5 million).

An unprecedented number of travellers have visited Asia in the last few years and cruise operators are going all out to launch new state-of-the-art ships with offers and cruise itineraries that are suited to this region. Today, Asia has 66 cruise ships, over 200 cruises and nearly 300 ports of call across more than 20 countries. Of these, China, Taiwan, Japan, Singapore, India and Hong Kong make up around 95% of the passenger volume. Some of the most frequently called ports in Asia are Shanghai in China, Okinawa & Fukuoka in Japan, Keelung in Taiwan, Penang in Malaysia, Busan in South Korea, Singapore and Hong Kong.

Dream Cruises: Asia’s Premium Cruise Line
Of the numerous luxury cruise ship brands operating in Asia, Dream Cruises has some of the most exciting cruise itineraries for the region. Asia’s exclusive premium cruise line launched Genting Dream in Asia last November. With 1,700 staterooms that can accommodate 3,400 guests, Genting Dream is one of the largest cruise ships in the Asia Pacific region. Initially Genting Dream had three home ports – Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Sanya and from December 2017, it moves to Singapore where it will be permanently based.

All cruises aboard the Genting Dream will start and end at Singapore. Itineraries include exciting tropical destinations in South East Asia such as Port Klang (Malaysia), Phuket (Thailand), Surabaya and North Bali (Indonesia). Travellers can choose from 2, 3 and 5 night itineraries starting at INR 15,885 pp including stay, all meals and entertainment onboard the cruise.

In November 2017, Dream Cruises will launch their second ship, the World Dream, which will have two home ports – Guangzhou and Hong Kong. This is an enormous luxury ship, easily one of the largest in this part of the world. It has 1,680 staterooms and can accommodate upto 3,365 passengers. The World Dream offers 2 night and 5 night packages, starting from Hong Kong or Guangzhou, and covering destinations like Ho-Chi Minh City and Nha Trang (Vietnam), Boracay and Manila (Philippines). Packages start at INR 19,700 pp.

Both Genting Dream and World Dream are designed for exquisite luxury, with spacious staterooms, more than 35 restaurants and bars, multiple pools, water slides, spas, indoor games and underwater excursions. A unique feature of Dream Cruises is the mini-submarine experience, which allows passengers to travel into the deep sea.

Winter Cruising Options in Asia
Singapore seems to be the port of choice for Asia cruises in the winter. Most leading cruise liners provide family cruise packages of 3 or 5 nights duration, starting and ending in Singapore. Leading cruise liners with itineraries from Singapore this winter are Dream Cruises, Royal Caribbean, Princess Cruises and Costa Cruises.

  • Star Cruises Superstar Gemini will homeport in Bangkok from December offering new cruise itineraries from Bangkok to Koh Samui. Also Superstar Libra, has been relocated to Penang, and offers 1,3 and 4 night itineraries to Langkawi and Phuket.
  • Royal Caribbean The world’s leading cruise line company, the Royal Caribbean operates the Mariner of the Seas from Singapore with 3, 4, 5 and 7 night cruises. Primary ports of call include Penang, Phuket, Port Klang, Langkawi, Ho Chi Minh City and Bangkok. Royal Caribbean has also introduced state of the art ships such as the Quantum of the Seas which is based out of Shanghai to cater to the demand for luxury cruises in China.
  • Princess Cruises Starting from Singapore, they offer longer cruise sailings of upto 12 nights aboard Sea Princess, covering many ports of call such as Bali, Langkawi, Penang, Phuket and Port Klang. The 12 night cruise package aboard Sea Princess starts at USD 1,519 pp. Princess Cruises also operates a second ship, the Sapphire Princess, which offers multiple cruise options, starting from 3 nights to 11 nights, covering various destinations across Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, India and Thailand. Cruise packages aboard the Sapphire Princess start at USD 419 pp.
  • Costa Cruises Costa Victoria sails from Singapore to multiple ports of call across South East Asia – including Malacca, Penang, Phuket and Langkawi. Cruises are of 3, 4 or 5 nights duration starting at INR 18,485 pp. Costa Cruises has also launched the Neo Classica in India for the winter season, and has cruise packages from Cochin or Mumbai, to Male (Maldives). Packages are of 3, 4 or 7 nights duration starting at INR 16,520 pp.

Most of the leading cruise companies offer specialized packages and great offers. Make sure you book your cruise a few months in advance to guarantee your cabin at a great price.

The author is a travel blogger and writes about popular holiday destinations and cruise packages. In this particular article, he talks about the benefits of choosing a cruise holiday as compared to land holiday. He also covers various cruise options that combine cruises with land holidays.

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