Impending implosion in the industry. Personal opinion

I was just watching a Royal Caribbean commercial, and got to thinking, how long before the cruise industry implodes ? Bear with me.
Years ago, ships held roughly 2K pax, now, some hold 5K. That’s a town. In order to fill these ships, cruise lines must sell most cabins for next to nothing, and get more $$$ out of you once on board.
Excursions have increased in price drastically. What were once island paradises are now trampled and trod upon. Example; St. Thomas. Last time we were there, it looked like military vehicles had rolled through. Ships may have to stop there, but people don’t have to get off. What will PR look like in a few months?

Older cruisers are dying. Millennials don’t spend. Larger ships seem to have fewer staff. The experience is terrible at times. Food arrives cold, buffet areas don’t have enough seats, staff can be rude. Loyalty perks are being taken away . It’s getting so we don’t even get a mint on our pillow at night. But hey, as long as the WiFi is fast 🤬🤯.
It’s only a matter of time before people find something else. RVing comes to mind.

RCCL , Carnival, everyone has new ships being built. I just don’t see this growth lasting much longer, and when people stop filling these mega ships....look out. It’s gonna be ugly.

Who will file for bankruptcy first ? My guess is either NCL or Royal Caribbean.
This is all just my opinion, but feel free to respond.

Enjoy the football games tomorrow.

13 Answers

Congrats on your upcoming 4th cruise. We’ve seen a lot of changes in roughly 20 odd years of cruising. Some good, most, not so good. Mostly, things get taken away. Lately, the ships just keep getting bigger. Pretty soon you’ll need a tender to board in Miami.

didn’t mean to sound condescending, sorry if I offended anyone

I dont thing things will implode yet. The industry is following Disney. I was a Disney fanatic, going to disneyland and disney world every year. They used to be cheap to get in the parks and give you dining coupons when you buy a vacation package. Camping for $22 a night now $80 a night. Now you pay for everything. now we go once every 5 years or so. Cruising, they used to give you things like mints, etc. now they stop giving away and now you pay. So what was cheap now costs more and no freebies. Like Disney, cruising will be for people with lots of cash to spend and the "poor" people will have to do something else. The saying "build it and they will come" held true for Disney and now for cruising. We used to do 2 or 3 cruises a year and now going down to one. We dont like big ships. So we dust off our r v. If you noticed most cruise line chatrooms, almost everyone complains about this and that. Camping chatrooms dont complain, just ask questions, thus happy campers. We been camping for 35 years and cruising for 11 years by the way. My opinion.

Im not sure I'd call what will happen an Implosion.

With the industry leaning towards "Mega Ships" what you will soon start seeing is a decline, due to those who dont like the big ship feel. RCI for example, they currently are fielding soon to be 28 (32 or so by 2024) ships, with what will remain a Majority of them being on the smaller side. You will see an extended service life of the Freedom, Voyager, Radiance, Vision, and Sovereign class ships.

Since their founding in 1968, RCI has only "retired" 10 ships:

Song of Norway(1996), Nordic Prince(1995), Sun Viking(1998), Song of America(1999), Viking Serenade(2002), Nordic Empress/Empress of the Seas(2008) which has since been returned to active service(2015), Sovereign of the Seas(2008), Monarch of the Seas(2013), Splendor of the Seas(2016), and Legend of the Seas(2017). Soon the Grandeur of the Seas will also be retired(2021).

Every one of those ships has gone on to service with different lines, with most of them still being in service.

The Icon ships will add another class between Quantum/Quantum Ultra, and Oasis. After that, I believe that they will bring a new class in the area between the Freedom and Voyager class(around 110,000-120,000 tonnes)

While the trend is going bigger, They will need something to fill the voids that retiring the smaller ships will leave

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