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Valiant Lady launches in the UK following 178% booking uplift this year

With a post booking surge of 178% in the last six months, Virgin Voyages in 2022 is set to see a strong return across the industry as cruising sails towards pre-pandemic levels.

After two years of restrictions, a study of 14,000 travellers by the brand finds consumer appetite for cruising has rocketed, with 96% keen to cruise this year. Compared to global holidaymakers, UK travellers are hungry to explore, citing destinations as the lead factor in picking a cruise.

The findings were released as Virgin Voyages launches its second lady ship, Valiant Lady, at London International Cruise Terminal, Tilbury, demonstrating the continued success of the lifestyle and travel brand by Sir Richard Branson, with the UK being a fundamental focus. 

Tom McAlpin, CEO of Virgin Voyages said: “It was incredible to launch Virgin Voyages last year, so welcoming our second ship, Valiant Lady, here in the UK less than a year later is a very special moment for the entire Virgin Voyages family. After a tough two years, people are excited to explore the world again and it means a lot to us that we can help facilitate that. We know that now more than ever, travellers want to invest in quality experiences. They’re seeking the best value for money, which is exactly what we offer.” 

Virgin Voyages’ 2021 debut of Scarlet Lady at Portsmouth International Port was critical to securing government funding for the Port’s terminal extension project; the expansion plans proposed for the whole port look to return £739M GVA for the UK within the next 10 years. With Valiant Lady, attracting close to 3,000 passengers per call, it is anticipated to bring a boost to the city of £1.5m for each voyage through direct and indirect costs, further contributing to the nation’s travel sector. 

Brand data finds that majority of cruisers (80%) are seeking and booking ‘exclusively adult’ propositions and more than half (53%) of guests have children and are booking with the intention of spending time away.

From May, Valiant Lady will operate from her new homeport in Barcelona offering late night and overnight stays in the likes of Málaga, Palma de Mallorca, the Canary Islands, Lisbon, Belgium and Ibiza. 

Virgin Voyages is gearing up to welcome its second and third ships in its fleet of four with Valiant Lady sets sail in March and Resilient Lady starts her voyages in August. Virgin Voyages goes global this year with homeports in Miami, Barcelona and Athens.

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