CLIA Posts Strong First Quarter Results

Consumer demand for ocean cruises onboard ships of the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) member lines remained strong in 2006's first quarter. CLIA-member cruise lines carried 2.79 million worldwide guests, a 5.8 percent increase over the same period in 2005. North American passengers grew by 4.3 percent in the first quarter to 2.44 million, up from 2.34 million guests during the same period in 2005. In addition to the growing passenger numbers, CLIA cruise lines posted a collective 106.1 percent occupancy factor in the first quarter of 2006, compared with 104.3 percent for the same period in 2005; cruise ship occupancies often exceed 100 percent given the sale of third and fourth berths, usually for kids staying with their parents in the same cabin. CLIA's first-quarter passenger numbers also showed that itineraries of one to five days accounted for a 33.9 percent share of the cruise market; itineraries of six to eight days accounted for 53.3 percent, while nine- to 17-day itineraries accounted for 12.3 percent. Itineraries of 18 days or longer accounted for less than one half of one percent of the market. The average cruise length in the first quarter was 7.06 days versus 7.33 days for the same period in 2005. CLIA represents nearly 98 percent of the cruise capacity marketed in North America.

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