The past week marked a milestone that the cruise industry in
Southeast Asia had been waiting for: It was the first time in more than
two years that cruises are sailing to regional ports of call again.
Royal Caribbean's Spectrum of the Seas arrived at Malaysia's Port
Klang on 1 July, while in Indonesian waters Resorts World Cruises'
Genting Dream called at her first destination at Indonesia's Bintan and
Batam Islands on the same day. Both ships departed from their homeports
Naturally, cruise industry executives expressed their excitement to resume regional sailings.
The return of regional ports of call is especially meaningful for the
newly launched Resorts World Cruises. President Michael Goh said:
"Having launched a few weeks ago, the start of our deployment was
timely, and we have the local and regional governments and authorities
to thank for the comeback of destination cruises, together with the hard
work of our shore and ship team."
For Royal Caribbean International, Angie Stephen, vice president,
Asia Pacific said: "The return of cruising to destinations is timely,
with countries around the region reopening to welcome visitors, and
looking to revitalise their tourism sectors, and embrace the new normal.
Coastal and maritime tourism are important economic drivers
underpinning our Southeast Asian economies, and we’re excited to breathe
new life into the region’s travel and tourism sectors."
The resumption of port calls marks an important milestone for
Singapore and the region, according to Keith Tan, chief executive at
Singapore Tourism Board.
"Cruising is a key tourism driver, and as ASEAN's lead coordinator
for cruise development, Singapore will continue to work with our
counterparts to strengthen the region's attractiveness as a cruising
destination and source market," he was quoted as saying by The Straits
Both cruise lines are opening up more destination cruises in the coming months.
Having launched new destination cruises from 1 July to Bintan and
Batam Islands, Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Malacca, Resorts World Cruises
will from October onwards offer more cruises to Phuket, Surabaya and
Meanwhile, Royal Caribbean will start its first ports of call to
Thailand in October 2022, with Thailand itineraries already open for
Fly-cruise market takes off again
With borders opened and destination sailings back on cruise
itineraries, the second half of 2022 is looking positive for both cruise
lines amid swiftly growing international demand.
"The fastest growth is coming from within the region, with India,
Malaysia, and Indonesia leading the pack," said Stephen. "We are also
pleasantly surprised with the volume coming from long haul markets like
the US and Europe."
Resorts World Cruises is seeing "very encouraging" demand from both the
domestic and regional markets, with an increasing trend for inbound
travellers via the Fly-Cruise segment from SEA and South Asia.
Source: Travel Weekly Asia