New trends for the German market emerged in 2018 with a swing toward longer cruises and a pullback from remote destinations like Asia and the Caribbean in favor of Europe, particularly the Baltic but also the Eastern Mediterranean.

Costa Venezia, designed for the Asian market, made its maiden call at Singapore over the weekend, where more than than 2,000 passengers embarked.

The number of ocean cruises taken by the UK/Irish market last year passed 2m for the first time, hitting a record 2,009,000 in 2018, up 2% from 2017. UK/Ireland is only the second European market to have reached over 2m cruisers and the fourth globally.

Explorer Dream, the new member of Dream Cruises' fleet, debuted in Shanghai and will launch its maiden voyage heading to Japan today.

Multigenerational travel is booming, with baby boomers leading the way – for now – to be followed by larger millennial and Gen Z generations, who are changing how families travel. That was the takeaway from a panel titled “Cracking the Code on Family Travel and Millennial Cruising” Wednesday at Seatrade Cruise Global.

‘Asia is a region of mammoth proportions, dynamic cultural variances, huge source market opportunity and challenging operating constraints so what needs to be done to propel Asia Pacific into becoming the second largest source market in the world, and maybe even challenging for the top spot?’

What’s fueling the demand for luxury cruises? According to executives on the luxury panel at Seatrade Cruise Global, baby boomers continue to seek upscale experiences at sea because they have disposable incomes and time to travel.

More people cruised globally in 2018 than forecast, with 28.5m taking seagoing vacations, a nearly 7% increase from 2017, and up from the 28.2m originally projected by Cruise Lines International Association.

Viking Cruises and China Merchants Shekou, representing China Merchants Group, signed a memorandum of understanding to form a joint venture focused on building a cruise line with worldwide offerings for the Chinese market.

A strategic investment partner is taking a minority stake in Portugal's Mystic Cruises, enabling Mário Ferreira's privately held company to grow faster and have a bigger, stronger presence in the US market, Seatrade Cruise News can exclusively report.

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