Research Insights U.S. cruise market: "Wave season" (1Q23) projected to be the strongest in three years

U.S. cruise market: "Wave season" (1Q23) projected to be the strongest in three years

April 2023
Phocuswright Research

Booking activity accelerated after the CDC relaxed COVID protocols for the cruise industry in August 2022. According to Phocuswright’s recent travel research report U.S. Cruise Market Report 2022-2026, the third and fourth quarters exceeded expectations and "wave season" (1Q23) is projected to be the strongest in three years.

Additionally, the travel agency distribution channel is in full recovery. Travel advisor bookings have seen week-over-week growth since September 2022. Host agencies and independent agents continue to thrive and have become even stronger performers for the cruise lines. This travel trade should, once again, represent 70% of total cruise line bookings by 2024.

Phocuswright Chart: Cruise Gross Bookings Share by Channel
(Click image to view a larger version.)

This report provides a comprehensive view of the U.S. cruise segment, including detailed market sizing and projections through 2026, distribution trends, key developments and more.

This report is part of the U.S. Travel Market Report 2022-2026 series, which features an overview of the U.S. travel market, along with detailed data and analysis of five key segments: airline, hotel & lodging, car rental, cruise and packaged travel. A standalone report dedicated to online travel agencies rounds out the coverage. Collectively, the series provides comprehensive market sizing, projections and analysis for the U.S. travel industry from 2019-2026.

Other reports in the U.S. Travel Market Report 2022-2026 series (available now or publishing soon):

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