Leading Travel Franchise Offers Consumer Advice on Top 10 Cruising Trends

Expedia CruiseShipCenters Predicts Smooth Sailing for Consumers Who Book During “Wave Season”

February 13, 2013 // Franchising.com // Vancouver, British Columbia - January through March is the period cruise industry insiders refer to as the “Wave Season.” This is the time of year when consumers can expect to get the best deals on their travel. So, now that you know when to book travel, where to? Expedia® CruiseShipCenters® – part of Expedia® Inc., the largest online travel company in the world, reveals what they find to be the most popular cruising trends for 2013.

“I’ve seen certain patterns begin to emerge regarding the locations and types of cruises customers have been requesting over the past few weeks,” said Chris Meyer, Expedia CruiseShipCenters Laguna Hills, CA franchisee. “Many of these trends have been popular choices over the past several years and others are newer additions.”

Here is a list of the top 10 cruising trends to help you plan your next dream vacation:

  1. Alaska: The Great Land is a perennial favorite, and many who have already cruised the Inside Passage are embarking on a Cruise Tour that adds land exploration of Denali National Park and Canada’s wild Yukon Territory. You can view the glaciers or take a helicopter to the top of one for a dogsled ride. Alaska cruises are no longer considered the purview of the older set. Disney Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean International sail family-focused vessels in Alaskan waters and guests hail from around the world.
  2. The Caribbean: Year-round sunny weather attracts those who want to escape the winter cold or simply enjoy fun in the sun while visiting gorgeous beaches and laid-back islands. The cruise lines have now upped the ante, creating megaships that are islands in themselves and treat passengers to activities such as zip lines, surf simulators and rock-climbing walls all at sea. Windstar Cruises’ sailing yachts ply the waters powered by wind and feature a dock allowing passengers to swim, windsurf, kayak and snorkel right off the back of the ship.
  3. Hawaii and the South Pacific: The allure is legendary and unsurprising! Sun worshipers will delight in dramatic scenery, green rainforests and warm ocean waters. From the distinct landscapes and personalities of the Hawaiian Islands to storied Tahiti, Fiji, and the Cook Islands, which have inspired poets and artists for centuries, this part of the world has perfected the art of relaxing.
  4. The Mediterranean: Even Rick Steves, the do-it-yourself guru of European travel, believes that a cruise is the most cost-effective way to experience the great cities of the Mediterranean. Cruisers can journey around the Italian boot from Rome to Venice, take in the Greek Isles and even visit the Holy Land on one of the many itineraries in this historic sea.
  5. South America: From the snow-capped Andes to the Amazon Rain Forest; from Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands to majestic Iguazu Falls, active volcanoes, and alpine forests, this is a continent of contrast. Many travelers combine a South America cruise with inland excursions to many of the atmospheric cities of South America.
  6. The Baltic: Ringing this northern European sea St. Petersburg, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Helsinki and Tallin beckon with Old World charm. For travelers who have already visited the Mediterranean, a Baltic cruise offers another side and personality of Europe.
  7. Asia: With historic temples, world wonders, and friendly locals, a cruise through Asia offers some of the most interesting landscapes. Shop in the floating markets of the Mekong Delta one day and in high-end boutiques in Singapore the next. A vast region of cultures, spirituality and traditions would possibly take a lifetime to discover completely, and a cruise can give travelers a taste of the best!
  8. Australia and New Zealand: With an outstanding influence of nature and culture to lush rainforests and renowned wine regions, travelers will never experience a dull moment on an Australia/New Zealand cruise. This itinerary includes a diversity of landscapes, beaches and lifestyles, suited to travelers of all ages.
  9. River Cruising: Between the seas, smaller ships ply the continent’s original water highways through Europe, Russia and Asia, visiting quaint villages and ancient cities. Demand is driving river cruise lines to continually add more vessels to this increasingly popular form of travel. Between immersive shore visits, guests can sit on the top deck as they float by vineyards, castles and hillsides.
  10. Polar Exploration: From The Northern Lights, Antarctic penguins, Norwegian fiords to Iceland’s puffins, travelers wanting to venture off the beaten track of exploration will find cruise lines that accommodate with conventional and expedition-style cruises that combine science and soft adventure.

“With our Extraordinary Europe and Awesome Alaska Sales on now until February 15th, there has never been a better time for customers to book their dream vacation,” says Geraldine Ree, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Expedia CruiseShipCenters. “This wave season, customers can expect to receive Expedia® Extras like onboard cash credits, stateroom upgrades and reduced deposits on their cruise to the world’s most exciting destinations. Whatever it is you are seeking for your next vacation, our knowledgeable Vacation Consultants can make it happen.”

About Expedia CruiseShipCenters

Expedia, Inc., the largest online travel company in the world, has partnered with Expedia CruiseShipCenters to provide travelers a one-stop-shop for cruises and vacations. Expedia CruiseShipCenters was founded in 1987 and offers the best value in the industry with 4,000 travel consultants in more than 170 franchise locations throughout North America. Named a fast-growing franchise by MSN Money, the company offers flexible, rewarding business opportunities for travel consultants and franchise owners with a passion for travel. For more information on joining the Expedia CruiseShipCenters team, visit www.expediafranchise.com.

Expedia is either a registered trademark or trademark of Expedia, Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries. Other logos or product and company names mentioned herein may be the property of their respective owners. © 2013 Expedia, Inc. All rights reserved. CST # 2029030-50 and CST # 20893-43

SOURCE Expedia CruiseShipCenters

Media Contact:

Sheryl Bass
Fishman Public Relations
847-945-1300 x236
sbass@fishmanpr.com

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