The uncertainty surrounding cruise port re-openings has driven a most unusual revival: the cruise to nowhere.
In a recent interview with Skift.com, Michael Goh, president of Dream Cruises and head of international sales at Genting Cruise Lines, shared how the line is looking at cruises to nowhere once business resumes.
And it is an idea that could just take off across the world – including Australia, where state boarders may remain an issue.
P&O Australia, for instance, runs themed cruises which could easily be turned into a revival of the cruise to nowhere. And major lines with huge entertainment decks like resorts should have no problem convincing families that the ship IS the destination.
Because Genting Dream calls into Malaysia and Thailand, international sailings are dependent on when these nations reopen their borders and allow ships to enter their waters.
So small wonder they are among the first to consider the idea.
“We hope to start cruises to nowhere in July or August, and at least enable guests to have a good time or enjoy activities on board the ship,” he told the publication. “We are looking at very short cruises of two or three nights, then five nights, before we go on longer cruises.”
Mr Goh said the cruise ship itself is a destination. Short cruises don’t require port stops to support the cruise experience, because there are plenty of on-board activities.
Given the popularity of short cruises with Asians, and the fact that new ships are being built with more amenities than before, the cruise to nowhere model seems like a viable option to attract both new and loyal cruisers.
And Mr Goh maintained cruise ships were among the safest forms of holiday.
“If you go on a conventional holiday, you go to the airport and wait for a plane, and then go to two different countries, check into the first hotel, check out of the hotel to go to the next country, and repeat the process,” he explained.
In contrast, cruising requires checking in once to visit various destinations, thus making it a great option to travel through less channels.
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