Cruise Sellers Positive On Achieving 2015 & 2016 Goals
Both RCL and NCLH will issue earnings reports in
the week ahead, and while there’s mystery about how business sourced from
Europe and Asia pans out, one can expect solid numbers from both companies in
terms of the North American market.
Retail reports for May and June are critical to predicting the outcome of 2015
because they represent the last 2 months for most agents when sales for the
calendar year are going to outnumber sales for the next year - and they are
coming in solid.
Fall/early winter Caribbean went well, as did the tail end of Alaska, with even
Europe holding its own. In addition, the Caribbean is once again
benefitting from a lack of bad news in the early stages of hurricane season.
Still, agents say things are not perfect. One top producer noted, “Goal
achievement in 2015 is cruise line specific - some lines are up, some flat, some down. Of course, the
trade-friendly partners typically outperform.”
Another top retailer pointed out: “Goals can be based on passengers or revenue.
In years like 2015, when capacity drops in the Caribbean, average tickets increase,
and deals are scarcer, passenger goals are much more difficult to hit. Revenue
is up but can be offset by a decrease in passenger volume.”
In July and August, there’s a shift from hitting goals for 2015 to 2016 as more
bookings shift to the latter. Early reports are strong.
“2016 is very strong YOY, but part of that is because cruise lines deployed
2016 sooner than they deployed new itineraries in previous years,” reports one
source. “There is debate in some circles that deploying further out
cannibalized 2015 business.”
That said, all sources spoken to by Cruise Week maintained that
deploying further out is a net positive for their business.