Cruising is one of the fastest-growing markets within the travel industry right now. These are the top cruise destinations for 2023 and beyond.
According to a report from Grand View Research, the cruise market is expected to be worth $15.1 billion by 2028. Currently worth $7.25 billion as of the end of 2021, the cruise market is expected to explode in growth, surpassing pre-2020 levels of popularity in the coming years.
Although cruising took a hit in 2020 due to government-imposed travel restrictions, the industry is currently making a major comeback.
After an 80% decline in cruise travel in 2020, the cruise industry has seen consistent and steady growth in 2021 and 2022.
Top Cruising Destinations For 2023
Insights from market research done by Grand View research have revealed the following destinations as the fastest-growing for 2023, capturing the largest market share of the cruise industry.
North America remains the most popular cruise destination, occupying over 50% of the revenue share for the cruise industry.
Of course, North America is a broad region and encompasses popular cruise destinations, including:
- The Caribbean
- The Bahamas
- Northeastern U.S. and Canada
If you’re looking for a tropical getaway, a cruise to Mexico, the Bahamas, or the Caribbean is a quick and easy option, with cruises departing from a number of ports in the United States.
For a more unique adventure, a fall cruise to see the foliage of New England or a summer visit to Alaska to experience the Land of the Midnight Sun are incredible choices.
The two largest players in the North American market are cruise lines Carnival and Royal Caribbean.
Europe is another popular destination for cruises, with 25% of the revenue share.
It’s one of the best regions for hassle-free cruising because, as of October 2022, every country in Europe has dropped its COVID-related travel restrictions.
Europe is another region that offers a diverse range of cruise itineraries, from exotic Mediterranean and Greek isles cruises in the south to Baltic cruises in the north.
Finally, river cruises are the fastest-growing segment in the cruise industry, with an annual growth rate of over 13%.
Unlike traditional ocean cruises, river cruises utilize smaller ships and have a heavier focus on sightseeing within each destination rather than lounging by the pool or doing other activities on the ship.
The most popular river cruises are in Europe, with cruises on the Rhine, Danube, Seine, and other rivers allowing travelers to experience multiple destinations throughout Europe.
While some river cruise lines (like Viking) are targeted at older travelers, cruise lines like Avalon and AmaWaterways are attracting a younger crowd.
Why Is Cruising So Popular Right Now?
Cruises have been attracting more and more travelers due to their affordability and ease of planning.
Compared to typical land-based travel, the logistics of a cruise are simple. Travelers don’t have to worry about arranging hotels, transportation between destinations, meals, and activities for themselves.
And cruises are also shockingly affordable.
Some cruise lines have been offering great discounts in 2022, and even without crazy deals like that, many cruises can be booked for between $100 to $300 per night per person.
This is much less than what a hotel room would cost in many destinations. (And your cruise fare includes lodging, meals, and transportation.)
Of course, the cost of cruises can go up depending on whether you upgrade to a larger stateroom, purchase a premium beverage package, or add on cruise excursions, but overall, cruises can be budget-friendly vacations, especially if you choose your dates and itinerary wisely.
Traveling during the off-season (fall in Europe, for example) can lead to some incredible deals.
Who Are Cruises For?
In addition to being affordable and hassle-free, cruises also offer something for everyone.
Families may want a relaxing Caribbean vacation on a massive kid-friendly ship that contains an entire water park at sea.
But couples or single adults may be more interested in an adults-only cruise with famous DJs onboard that will hit the hottest destinations in Europe.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com