Cruise Industry Statistics – 2023 Update

Dec 27, 2023 | CRUISE TIPS | 0 comments

cruise industry stats 2023

Introduction – Cruise Industry 2023

Embark on a journey through the opulent waves of the cruise industry with me as we unveil the statistics and fascinating facts that paint a picture of the thriving cruise industry. Set sail into the latest updates for 2023 and discover the buoyant resurgence that has followed the challenges faced by the cruise industry in 2020 and 2021.

In this updated guide, we have included key cruise statsistics that help show you the state of the current cruise industry, including key information from the last 2  years and a snapshot of what’s to come in 2024.

1. A Majestic Comeback

In the grand spectacle of cruise statistics, 2022 stands tall as the year the cruise market staged a dazzling recovery, reaching levels reminiscent of the heights of 2010. From a global perspective, the cruise industry, once shadowed by a temporary halt in 2020 due to the pandemic, welcomed a staggering 20.4 million passengers in 2022.

A monumental leap from the previous year, 2022’s success echoes the industry’s resilience and hints at potential record-breaking years in 2023 and 2024.

2. Royal Caribbean’s Royal Reign

Royal Caribbean Cruise Line proudly took the crown in 2022, carrying over 4.6 million passengers, marking itself as the reigning monarch among cruise lines.

Meanwhile, the illustrious Carnival Corporation, with its array of brands including Carnival, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Princess Cruises, AIDA, Holland America, P&O and Seabourn boasted a regal total of 7.7 million passengers although this isn’t broken down by cruise line or brand.

3. A Symphony of New Ships

In the orchestration of cruise ship launches, 2022 played a different tune, presenting 17 new ships compared to the crescendo of 24 in 2021.

Yet, the new additions, including the likes of Celebrity’s Beyond and Disney’s Wish, painted a maritime masterpiece, each vessel a testament to the industry’s innovation and commitment to excellence. Favourites of ours that launched in 2023 include Oceania Vista, Regent Seven Seas Grandeur and Seabourn Pursuit.

In total there were a total of 15 new cruise ships elivered in 2023. 

4. 2024 –  A Year of Nautical Splendor?

The upcoming year promises to continue the maritime symphony, with an anticipated 15 new cruise ships setting sail in 2024. From the iconic Cunard Queen Anne to the innovative Rotal Caribbean Icon of the Seas, these vessels are poised to navigate the seas, weaving tales of elegance and adventure in the years to come.

5. Green Horizons

In a nod to environmental consciousness, over 50% of the new cruise ships launched in 2022 or launched in 2023 are powered by Liquified Natural Gas (LNG), offering a cleaner and more sustainable voyage. This heralds a new era where the industry strives to reduce its carbon footprint and embrace eco-friendly practices.

Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) is the cleanest fossil fuel and it represents an excellent alternative to diesel to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and compact climate change. LNG also has virtually zero sulphur emissions. 

69% of diesel-powered ships have been fitted with exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS) which remove 98% of sulphur content from exhaust emissions. 96% of non-LNG new ships will have EGCS installed.

6. Cruise Ports: Gateways to Wonder

With over 2,000 cruise ports beckoning exploration, the maritime map unfolds like a treasure trove. From bustling Port Canaveral, the world’s busiest cruise port, to the serene river ports awaiting discovery, each destination tells a story of adventure, culture, and discovery.

7. Cruise Passenger Chronicles

Cruise enthusiasts, are a diverse group spanning all ages and the average age of a cruise passenger is 47 years old. However, people in their forties make up only 15% of cruise passengers. Most cruises have a mix of all ages, from children to pensioners.

Interestingly World cruises have the oldest passengers, where the average age is 62. This is because there are generally very few children on board and it’s mostly retired people who can go away for 180 days at a time.

Caribbean cruises have the youngest passengers, where the average age is 43. This is because they are popular with families as well as those under 30 who like to take short party cruises from the US.

British passengers have an older average age than the global figures – it stands at 55.8 years.

CLIA reseach shows that more than a quarter of cruises taken by British and Irish guests in 2022 involved a travelling party of three or more generations.  

8. 75% of Guest book Thier cRuises through atravel agent

We all know the benefits of booking your cruise through a good travel agent and Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) suggests there are approximately 13,000 travel agencies and 50,000 individual travel agents worldwide. Together, these book an astonish 75% of cruise vacations around the world.

Related: 9 Reasons Why you should book your Cruise through a Travel Agent

9. Awareness and Sustainability

A rising tide of awareness sweeps through the cruising community, with 76% of British and Irish passengers expressing increased consciousness of environmental and sustainable tourism. As the cruise industry sails towards the goal of net-zero carbon cruising by 2050, passengers are aligning their compasses with a more eco-friendly voyage.

This shows a huge increase in passengers being aware of cruising’s environmental impact.

10. Quirky Maritime Tales

As we navigate the waters of maritime history, peculiar tales emerge, from the eccentric Church of Scientology’s cruise ship, the Freewinds, to the elusive Deck 13 superstition that guides ship architecture. Cruise ship weddings, some legally recognized and others symbolic, add a touch of romance to the oceanic narrative.

11. A Glorious Finale

As we weigh anchor on this voyage through statistics and tales of the high seas, the crescendo of the cruise industry echoes in our ears. With 2024 unfurling its nautical wings, the future looks promising, a testament to the industry’s ability to weather storms and emerge stronger than ever.

As you absorb these maritime marvels, may your wanderlust be kindled, and your dreams set sail on the luxurious waves of the cruise industry’s resplendent journey! Happy Cruising everyone.

Cruise Industry
Reception Area on Seven seas Grandeur


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Mike & Anita

Welcome all cruise enthusiasts!
We’re Mike & Anita, your spirited guides to the high seas, and we’ve clocked in over 600 days at sea. This blog is our buoyant haven dedicated to all you cruise lovers out there, a place to dive into the wonderful world of cruising. Join us on this exciting voyage where we share not just tips but insider secrets and money-saving gems about cruising. Whether you’re a seasoned sailor or a first-time cruiser, get ready to explore, learn, and soak up the joy of our seafaring adventures. Happy Cruising! 🚢✨

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A passionate cruiser and photographer with more than 400 days at sea, and just a few, but growing number of Luxury River Cruises. Our expereince as hotel inspectors for a prestigous French brand help us uncover all the good things about luxury cruising. All-Inclusive Food and Wine Cruises always attract our attention!

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