Cruising is in high demand this year, according to recent American Express Travel internal cruise surveys, which queried nearly 250 American Express travel counselors across the U.S. Consumers are continuing to seek new cruising experiences, with 42 percent of agents reporting an increase in bookings for 2014, American Express says.
American Express Travel also reports it is offering a variety of deals on nearly 20 top cruise lines through its Winter Cruise Sale. Travelers who book online or via phone by February 28 will receive a number of special perks through the sale including stateroom upgrades, shipboard credits, prepaid gratuities, spa vouchers and complimentary amenities.
American Express noted that value is a top priority for cruisers—84 percent of surveyed agents feel that discounts and offers such as onboard credits are the most impactful tool to help them generate and drive cruise business - and says the extra amenities in the Winter Cruise Sale are especially important.
According to the survey of travel agents, AMEX reports some of the top destinations for cruises this year include the Caribbean (22%), Mediterranean (36%) and Europe (26%), as well as emerging locales such as Italy’s Po River (19%), Cambodia and Vietnam on the Mekong River (27%) and throughout South America on the Amazon River (20%).
Destinations being offered in the Winter Cruise Sale in particular include the Caribbean, Europe, Russia, Asia, Australia, Panama Canal, Mexico, Alaska, and Hawaii, with some travel-by dates extending into 2016, AMEX said.