Caribbean Cruise Pricing Up, Says Analyst

Cruise pricing in the Caribbean continues to recover, according to a Bank of America cruise analyst, but bounce-back pricing has weakened demand. Michael Savner wrote in a December Bank of America report that "travel agent surveys remained generally positive and reflect an improved Caribbean, although booking trends were weak for the first time." The reason for the dropoff, he wrote, is stronger pricing. Savner also found that the importance of wave season, the period (January through March) that typically generates the bulk of the year's bookings, has steadily decreased since 2000 and now accounts for only about 22 percent of bookings. One anonymous agent polled said that "demand is starting to build for wave season," while another claimed that "most cruisers are looking for new exotic locations in Europe and Asia," adding that Dubai is a hot new destination. (DE)

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