LUX Travel: Top 10 Cruise Trends of 2013

Even though some cruise lines are getting a bad reputation, cruises are still getting attention gaining momentum for 2013. Sail ahead by taking note of the newest cruise trends from all-inclusive travel, “it” ships, family cruises and cruise lines that give back. These top ten trends continue to exceed expectations in the cruise line industry.

All-Inclusive Cruise Lines

Top Cruise Trends 2013 All-Inclusive

Luxury cruise lines continue to make booking cruises easier for consumers. Cruises are becoming more all-inclusive and leading the way with the most complete packages featuring special amenities like airfare and pre/post-hotel stays.

River Cruises

Top Cruise Trends 2013 River Cruise
Photo Courtesy of

More ships are scheduled to take cruise-goers on river voyages for 2013. Ships will be cruising down rivers like the mighty Mississippi, the Rhône and Saône rivers in Burgundy and Provence for different scenery than the oceans and seas.

Romantic Cruises

Top Cruise Trends Romantic Cruise
Photo Courtesy of Viva Delta

More honeymooners and couples wanting to celebrate or rekindle their love are looking to cruises for their vacations. Cruise lines are offering a host of settings and services that cater to couples in love with honeymoon specials if the voyage is taken within six months of the wedding, spa exclusives offering couples massages in their suite, romantic themes wooing guests for engagements, weddings and honeymoons and even specialized shore excursions with black-sand beach picnics.

Cruise Video Tours

Top Cruise Trends 2013 Video Tours
via Royal Caribbean

In this digital age, consumers want to see what their cruise line experience will look like when considering future voyages, instead of just reading or hearing about it. Cruise lines are now providing easy access to video footage of cruises and destinations through video libraries via main websites.

Fine Dining

Top Cruise Trends 2013 Fine Dining

Cruises are enhancing their dining experiences to more than just the average buffet. They are continuing to go upscale with expanded food options, gourmet champagne brunches and food cooked by celebrity chefs.

Brand New “It” Ships

Top Cruise Trends 2013 It Ships Royal Princess
Photo Courtesy of Princess Cruises

Two of the hottest new “it” ships are debuting in 2013 with the Norwegian Breakaway and Princess Cruises’ Royal Princess. Bermuda bound, the Norwegian Breakaway will be the largest ship ever to homeport year-round in New York City and will feature pop art on the outside, an open-air boardwalk and an aquapark. The Royal Princess will feature a jogging track, a glass-bottomed walkway and a Sanctuary area intended for adults only.

Cruising For A Cause

Top Cruise Trends 2013 Cruise for a Cause
via Holland America Cruise

Cruise lines are making more impressive contributions to improving the world and being extra eco-conscious. Through green initiatives, volunteer work and charitable contributions, cruises are giving back in many ways.

Onboard Entertainment

Top Cruise Trends 2013 Onboard Entertainment
Photo Courtesy of

Cruise lines are becoming more creative and continue to think outside the box for entertainment and shows. New entertainment trends include dance cruises and operas featuring onboard competitions and lessons.

Ship Revitalization

Top Cruise Trends 2013 Ship Revitalization
Photo Courtesy of The Cruise Doctor

Rather than building brand new ships, cruise lines are undergoing intensive renovations to add on new spaces and make room for the larger amount of new cruise-goers and large families. Cruise lines will focus on enhancing a variety of areas on the ships.

Cruises Catering to Families

Top Cruise Trends 2013 Family Disney Cruise

As the second largest cruise segment right behind those age 55 and up, families aboard for gatherings have become key to filling cruise ships for family reunions, annual vacations and multigenerational events. Cruise lines are raising their bar to exceed family expectations for cruises. Now trending are newly enhanced shore excursions and over-the-top accommodations, including interactive cooking classes for parents and children, specialty loft suites and private concierge areas. Fun activities like miniature golf courses aboard the ship add to the cruise atmosphere and bring families closer together.

Social Media & Online Booking

Top Cruise Trends 2013 Online Booking

Cruise consumers are not using travel agents as much as social media offers and online booking. Since 2011, online bookings have increased. To navigate their options, consumers are turning to cruise company’s branded websites and social media platforms to learn more about which cruise line, cruise ship, type of room or itinerary is suitable and then booking directly after.

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