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There are a couple growing trends for cruise ships. One is brands building ever larger vessels (megaships) as well as smaller ones (expedition ships), and another is the emergence of more world cruises alongside quick getaways.
While some travelers have limited vacation time and seek out shorter sailings, one week remains the sweet spot for a cruise. On the flip side, however, world cruises are picking up steam with clients who have considerably more time, such as retirees. As a travel advisor, it’s important to recognize the differing itinerary options available so as to best guide customers toward the right vacation for them. Here’s a look at what’s trending.
Brief GetawaysLindblad Expeditions-National Geographic recently announced its new Wild Galapagos Escape, during which guests will visit the iconic destination in just seven days. Trips consist of five days onboard the line’s recently refurbished 48-guest National Geographic Islander, with a pre-cruise one-night stay in Guayaquil, Ecuador, and an optional post-cruise evening in Guayaquil at no extra cost. Alternatively, on the trip’s final day, clients can choose instead to continue to Quito, Ecuador, for a two-night extension.
Meanwhile, Crystal is crafting both short sailings — with Crystal Getaways itineraries — and long ones, through its Crystal Grand Journeys voyages. Crystal Getaways run from five to 14 nights in length, whereas Crystal Grand Journeys range from 14 to 105 nights. Newly announced Crystal Getaways itineraries to Hawaii, the South Pacific and Southeast Asia are available for 2020, when the brand will be celebrating its 30th anniversary.
HybridsWhile not specifically world cruises (although Crystal does offer them), Crystal Grand Journeys allow guests to combine several individual voyages into one. This makes for a sort of hybrid world cruise sampler that allows passengers to get their feet wet. For both 2019 and 2020, the line has sailings in the Mediterranean and Western Europe, the Caribbean, Central America, Southeast Asia and the South Pacific that feature several overnight port visits.World CruisesSeabourn and Silversea Cruises are two lines actively promoting their full world cruises. Seabourn just revealed that its 146-day World Cruise: Extraordinary Destinations onboard Seabourn Sojourn for 2020 will include both 62 ports of call and signature entertainment.
In fact, a gala evening will kick off the initial departure in Miami with performances by musical theater star Ruthie Henshall and actor and singer Norm Lewis. Rita Rudner, a former Broadway dancer turned comedian, will take the stage during the event as well, along with musical artists Charl du Plessis Trio, CH2 Guitar Duo, Soweto String Quartet, Filip Wojciechowski Trio and Wouter Kellerman, Lea Salonga and Rhonda Burchmore.
In 2021, Silversea is pulling out all the stops with a traditional world cruise as well as an expedition world cruise. The 150-day Finest World Tour will set sail onboard Silver Whisper and stop at 54 ports in 34 countries — conveniently roundtrip from the U.S.
Clients can also choose the 167-day Uncharted World Tour expedition, which will embark onboard Silver Cloud with a focus on active and adventurous discovery. The route will head from Ushuaia, Argentina, to Tromso, Norway, and visit 107 destinations in 30 countries. New ports for Silversea along the way will include Naxos, Folegandros and Nafpaktos in Greece; Ksamil, Albania; Bejaia, Algeria; and Fort William, Scotland.
For those seeking a less expensive world cruise, Princess Cruises is offering a discount on its 111-day voyage for 2021 — its fastest-selling trip, which visits 50 destinations in 32 countries across six continents onboard Island Princess. The world cruise sails either roundtrip from Los Angeles or Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Alternatively, Princess has a 97-day sailing for 2021 that can be booked from Los Angeles to Ft. Lauderdale.
The DetailsCrystal www.crystalcruises.com
Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographicwww.expeditions.com