Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., in the first public indication of how the cruise industry’s Wave season is going, said that it is unfolding well, with consumer demand strong, particularly from North America.
“The critical Wave period is upon us and is off to a very good start, with booking trends above the same time last year,” RCCL CFO Jason Liberty said during the company’s fourth-quarter earnings call. “Booking volumes exceeded prior year’s levels for the past three months and we are once again turning the year in a record booked position.”
Liberty added, “Last year’s Wave season was incredibly strong, so we are encouraged that bookings are trending even higher this year. As a result, we are booked ahead of last year on both load factor and rate.
“The strength in demand we’ve been seeing for the last couple of months has been particularly evident in North America, with bookings up nicely for sailings on both sides of the Atlantic.”
RCCL’s net income for 2017 was $1.63 billion, up from $1.28 billion in 2016, while revenue advanced to $8.8 billion from $8.5 billion.
For 2018, the initial forecast calls for net income in the range of $1.83 billion to $1.88 billion.