Cruise and Ferry Review - Summer/Spring 2020

7 9 Silversea’s cruise ships take guests to some of the world’s most remote places, offering them once-in-a-lifetime opportunities yet it remains a very small fraction of the overall tourism industry,” he says. “Although luxury cruise lines will face more competition than ever before due to the number of new ships launching this year and the increasing number of options in the ultra-luxury expedition segment, the potential to attract new-to- cruise travellers is much larger than most people expect. Silversea, for example, can access more than 1,000 destinations, far outstripping our competitors.” Notions of luxury are changing, says Martinoli. Nowadays, the desire for material commodities has, to some extent, been replaced by a desire for authentic experiences. “Rare, beautiful moments are the currency of exclusivity,” he explains. “For many of our guests, the concept of luxury is one of personal enrichment; they believe knowledge, memories and unique experiences define indulgence. There’s a growing demand from travellers for never-before-done experiences. This is a symptom of the evolution of ‘luxury’ – especially for baby boomers.” Finding a way to consistently exceed guest expectations is a key challenge, according to Paul Ludlow, president of P&O Cruises. “Our research and continuous market insights help us to identify who our future guests are and how to inspire them to consider a cruise when they’re planning their next holiday,” he says. “Onshore experiences are hugely important to potential guests and being able to unearth the beauty, history and serenity of destinations are the biggest draws to cruising. To exceed guest expectations, we’re constantly reviewing and developing excursions based on insights that show our guests want more authentic experiences led by individual native experts.” Cruise lines’ efforts to encourage more people to take a cruise seem to be working. Cruise Lines International Association predicts that nearly 32 million people will take cruises in 2020. Ludlow says cruising is rising in popularity across all demographics. “Younger passengers are notably attracted to the flexibility and choice available on cruises – from discovery to dining,” he explains. “Millennials have a need for exploration, knowledge, learning and adventures, and cruising offers all of these things. As more and more people put cruising into their holiday consideration set, more travellers will give cruising a try. By tackling the misconceptions of cruising head on, we can inspire new people to try it.” Silversea’s Martinoli believes that attracting new-to-cruise travellers will be key to the industry’s success in the coming years. “We need to capitalise on the fact that there are unique destinations that can primarily only be visited by ship,” he says. “Destinations such as Antarctica, the Galapagos and