Younger travellers are embracing cruise

In tandem with encouraging statistics that younger demographics are increasingly turning to travel professionals to book their holidays, the ABTA Holiday Habits survey further found that younger travellers are continuing to embrace cruise holidays more than any other age group.

More than a quarter (28%) of survey respondents aged 18-34 have taken a cruise in the last 12 months, an increase of 6% on 2018. In comparison, 38% of people aged over 65 have been on a cruise in the past year, but this is an increase of only 2% on last year's survey.

The increased diversity of the cruise market has contributed to the rise in younger travellers taking to the water for their holidays, with a wider range of itineraries and themed trips diversifying the cruise sector. According to the survey, 27% of 25-35-year-olds who are interested in going on a cruise are interested in an expedition trip, such as a voyage taking in the Northern Lights or the Antarctic. Other types of cruises which are of interest to holidaymakers aged 18-34 include a wellness or foodie cruise (each at 21%). On-board activities such as yoga, mental wellbeing workshops and massages appeal to younger travellers seeking wellness cruises, while food-lovers said cookery demonstrations and wine-tasting experiences appealed, along with menus offering vegetarian or vegan options.

Shorter cruises are more popular with younger travellers than older travellers - 33% of 18-34-year-olds are interested in a three- to five-day itinerary, compared to the average of 22%. The ABTA statement said that this could reflect a desire for flexibility and providing a "taster" for those who have never been on a cruise before. Cruise operators offering short breaks incorporating events such as retro-themed parties or floating music festivals are likely to appeal to younger travellers, the report concluded.

Among the older age groups, people aged 55-64 are more likely to book adults-only cruises, with 50% aged 65 and over interested in river cruises. However, the traditional ocean cruise remains popular with this age group at 64%. Additionally, older travellers prefer longer voyages with 40% of those aged 55 and over wanting a 14-day cruise, compared to the 34% average. Seven days is the most popular cruise duration among all age groups at 45%.

For more report findings go to www.abta.com/holidayhabits2019


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