Global Demand For Cruising Up 68% In 10 Years

Open Jaw

Over 22 million people took a cruise in 2014, up 68% from 13.1 million pax in 2004, according to a new study from CLIA.

CLIA's 2014 Economic Impact Analysis, an independent study commissioned by CLIA and conducted by Business Research & Economic Advisors (BREA), shows that total contributions of the cruise industry to the global economy reached $119.9 billion in 2014, up from $117 billion the previous year.

The industry supports the equivalent of just under 1 million employees earning $39.3 billion in income. Direct expenditures generated by cruise lines, pax and crews totaled $55.8 billion.

"The cruise industry is truly a global and dynamic industry," said Cindy D'Aoust, CLIA acting CEO. “We've enjoyed progressive growth over the last 30 years, driven initially by demand from North America, which expanded to Europe, Australia and now Asia. As a result, the cruise industry impacts the global economy generating jobs, income and business growth in all regions of the world."

Where Cruise Pax Come From

According to CLIA's study, the global cruise industry's 22 million pax are sourced from around the world. North America accounted for 55% or 12.2 million cruise pax. Europe accounted for 29% or 6.4 million pax. Other regions of the world, including Australia, China, Singapore, Japan and South America, accounted for the remaining 16% or 3.5 million pax.

CLIA's study shows that a total of 19.2 million cruise pax were sourced from the top 10 countries, accounting for 88% of global cruise pax.

The U.S. accounted for 51% of global cruise pax, with 11.21 million. Germany and the U.K. accounted for 15% of global pax (3.38 million). Australia, Italy and Canada each had more than 800,000 pax and accounted for 12% of global pax. China, France, Spain and Norway combined accounted for nearly 2 million, or about 10% of global pax.

"The potential for new cruise passenger growth is huge," said D'Aoust. "Apart from North America and Europe, other regions of the world account for nearly 85% of the world's population, yet represent only 16% of cruisers. That reflects a tremendous opportunity for the cruise industry."

Asia, and China in particular, is where cruise lines are betting on massive growth. Passenger capacity in Asia increased 20% between 2013 and 2015.

CLIA's research shows that China is a main driver of pax growth in Asia, adding 480,000 more cruise travellers since 2012, a nearly 80% compound annual growth rate. And, among the nearly 1.4 million cruise pax from Asia, China accounted for nearly 1/2 of the regional volume in 2014.

"Asia is a prime example of the cruise industry's growth opportunity," said D'Aoust. "The cruise industry is bringing more cruise visits to Asia and the volume of cruise travellers sourced from Asia for cruise tourism worldwide nearly doubled since 2012."

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