Hong Kong: Homeport and Transit Call Opportunity

Ovation of the Seas in Hong Kong

The new World Dream will arrive to homeport at the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal this November as another new ship uses Hong Kong as a turnaround destination.

Next year is looking to be on par with 2017 in terms of traffic, with 190 calls and 550,000 passengers, according to Jeff Bent, managing director of Worldwide Cruise Terminals, which oversees Kai Tak.

Around 75 percent of cruise calls at the facility are turnarounds.

“Ships leaving north Asia seasonally are making more transit calls in Hong Kong on their way to other markets, so there is a marginally positive effect for us, and perhaps an opportunity for seasonal homeports,” added Bent.

Source markets are certainly diverse, with Hong Kong locals, mainland Chinese and overseas passengers all playing into the passenger mix.

“The number and percentage of local Hong Kong passengers is increasing with additional homeporting capacity, and Hong Kong will likely be our largest source market this year,” Bent said. “The Chinese market presents its share of challenges, but is still vastly underpenetrated compared to mature markets.”

Hong Kong is the world’s tenth largest outbound travel market by spending. New transportation options will give mainland Chinese more options to board ships leaving Kai Tak in the next few years highlighted by high speed rail, a bridge to Zhuhai and Macao, and a new highway border crossing.

Of note, Kai Tak welcomed its millionth cruise passenger this year when the Majestic Princess called.

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Majestic Princess Set to Sail from Taiwan in 2018 Deployment Change

The Majestic Princess makes a call to Keelung in June.
Majestic Princess
The new Majestic Princess is poised to move into the Taiwanese market from April to July 2018, after which the 2017-built ship will head to Australia for winter 2018-2019.

According to sources with knowledge of the ship’s deployment, the Majestic will sail three- and four-night voyages from Keelung in all of April and May. A spokesperson for Princess Cruises told Cruise Industry News in a written statement that 2018 itineraries have yet to be confirmed.

Following her Taiwan-based short cruise program, the ship will offer longer cruises to Japan in May, June and July from Keelung. It is not known, however, if they will be mixed in with China-based sailings, or if Princess is continuing to cut capacity in China.

Announced in 2015, the Majestic Princess was built and developed for year-round China operations.

Earlier this year, Princess announced she would re-position seasonally to Australia for 2018-2019.

In addition, the Sapphire Princess, which has been dedicated to the Asia and China markets, will be re-deployed to Europe in 2018.

Carnival Corp ups full year revenue forecast on back of higher prices

Image result for carnival cruise

Carnival Corporation’s cumulative bookings for the next three quarters are at higher prices than last year and concentrated in the core cruise markets in North America and Europe.

Adjusted net profits for the last quarter edged up by $8 million year-on-year to $370 million as revenues grew from $3.7 billion to $3.9 billion on the back of a 4% increase in capacity.

The figures for the three months to May 31 were boosted by a 5% improvement in overall cruise ticket prices for the parent company of brands such as P&O Cruises, Cunard and Princess Cruises.

The improved rates affirmed efforts to increase demand “by building positive word of mouth through the delivery of exceptional guest experiences as well as our innovative marketing and public relations programmes,” said president and chief executive Arnold Donald.

The company expects full year 2017 net revenue yields in constant currency to be up approximately 3.5%, better than guidance given in March of up by around 3%.

Chief finance officer David Bernstein said: “Since the end of February, booking volumes for the next three quarters have been running in line with the prior year at nicely higher prices.

“At this point in time, cumulative bookings for the next three quarters are ahead of the prior year, again, at nicely higher prices.”

Looking forward, Donald said: “We are realising sustained strength in booking trends across all core products.

“We are delivering on our strategy to grow demand in excess of measured capacity growth while leveraging our industry-leading scale resulting in increased return on invested capital.”

The world’s largest cruise conglomerate saw the delivery of Princess Cruises’ Majestic Princess, the first ship tailored for Chinese passengers, as well as the addition of AIDAperla to German brand, AIDA Cruises.

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AIDAperla.

Two additional Princess Cruises ships, Caribbean Princess and Royal Princess, were fitted with the technical requirements to switch them early next year to the Ocean Platform featuring Ocean Medallion, the interactive technology for passengers which will debut on Regal Princess in November.

Donald told analysts in a conference call: “We have and we’ll continue to create carefully engineered high-quality destination experiences that are uniquely tailored to our guest references from our private islands like Princess Cays and Half Moon Cay to the planned expansion of our cruise terminal in Barcelona to our most recently completed port destination Amber Cove, in the Dominican Republic.

“We’re providing exceptional guest experiences that enable our brands to capture a price premium. We have many more innovations planned in port development that we expect to rollout in the coming years.”

He identified “new destination opportunities” in Cuba, the Bahamas and China.

The company expects to benefit from growing populations, increasing wealth and developing countries in addition to increased spending by consumers on “experience versus products”, all of which are contributing to 4% annual growth expected in travel globally.