The Royal Caribbean’s Icon of The Seas officially welcomed back the cruise ship industry from its COVID hiatus. The ship left The Port of Miami for its first voyage on January 27th and many travelers, new and old are ready to hit the road (or should we say waves?).
Icon Of The Seas Ushers In New Era Of Cruise Ships
The new Icon is The Royal Caribbean’s largest ship to date.
Coming in at five times the size of the Titanic, the mega-ship is a massive combination of the best of every cruise before it. The ship’s sprawling 20 floors leave nothing to be desired.
Some of the ship’s amenities include:
- 7 pools and an Aquapark with 6 water slides
- 8 distinct “neighborhoods”
- 40 restaurants
- A Casino
- Even an Ice skating rink
…And plenty more.
The Icon had built such anticipation and excitement that when reservations for the cruise ship opened in October 2023…
Royal Caribbean experienced the single largest booking day in company history.
This behemoth of a ship represents a homecoming for the cruise industry. Before the icon, cruise ship tourism created getaways for 30 million passengers annually…
After Covid, many worried that the business would be sleeping with the fishes…
But its comeback is thanks to returning cruisers and, surprisingly, to Gen Z’ers.
Cruisers New And Old
According to Cruise Lines International, over 85% of cruise passengers said that they would cruise again.
Even young travelers are helping fuel the bounce-back…
69% of individuals aged 18-24 said they were interested in traveling on a cruise.
It’s not hard to see why repeating customers are returning and why younger demographics are interested…
The Icon and other cruise ships like it make vacationing easier for its passengers.
MOST PASSENGERS FIND THAT BOOKING A CRUISE IS EASIER THAN PLANNING OTHER VACATIONS. PLUS, THE ADDED BENEFIT THAT CRUISES PAMPER THEIR PASSENGERS MORE.
Additionally, most cruise packages are all-inclusive. This means that besides alcohol and off-ship excursions, you might not have to spend a single dollar on your getaway.
This promotes the feeling of ease and relaxation. It helps people remember what they’re on vacation for.
The inclusivity of the ships is part of what attracts younger travelers.
Beyond just the simplicity of the trips…
Cruise lines have started offering getaways catered specifically to the 18-24 age demographic.
These journeys tend to be strictly kid-free and full of unique features such as peloton classes…
And resident drag performers.
And the focus on younger audiences is paying off.
On TikTok, videos of another royal Caribbean ship, the Serenade of The Seas, a 9-month world cruise are spreading like wildfire. The hashtag #ultimateworldcruise has over 350 million views.
What’s Over The Horizon For The Icon And The Cruise Ship Industry
If things continue on this upward trend, the cruise industry will see record capacity and new ships chartered throughout the year.
Even in the face of global catastrophe, the Icon of The Seas cruise ship represents one thing for the industry and the world.
No one thing can kill a deal, or an entire business, for that matter.
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