Norwegian’s Asia cruises aimed at North Americans

Norwegian Star photo taken in Acapulco Mexico, by Dave Jones.

By Michelle Baran

 After announcing that the Norwegian Star will sail to destinations in Asia and Australia for the fall/winter 2016-17 season, Norwegian Cruise Line made clear that the cruises are not aimed at the Asian source market.

“We’re definitely marketing globally, but the North American market is a huge and very important market for these itineraries. … This is not a ship going out to Asia for Asians. This is a ship going out for our core, target audience,” Andy Stuart, president and COO of Norwegian Cruise Line, told travel agents during a webinar on Tuesday.

Stuart broke down the Norwegian Star’s journey eastward, which will begin after its summer season in Northern Europe next year. The ship will sail to Barcelona, then to Istanbul and the Holy Land, then to Dubai via the Suez Canal, on to India, and ultimately to Asia where it will visit ports in Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and Hong Kong before continuing on to Australia and New Zealand.

The move eastward marks the first time since 2002 that Norwegian Cruise Line will sail to destinations in Asia.

The Asia expansion is separate from Norwegian Cruise Line Ltd.’s plans explore deployment options in China.

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