SHANGHAI, China – More big cruises are expected to sail into China this year to meet the growing needs of Chinese tourists.
Big cruises will include Voyager of the Seas from Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd and Costa Victoria from Costa Crociere SPA, according to a report on the 2011-2012 China Cruise Industry, which was released in the city Sunday.
Meanwhile, more medium-sized and small cruises will open routes from China to cities in Japan, South Korea and Southeast Asian countries, the report said.
They are Ocean Rose from Japan Huis Ten Bosch Cruise Ltd, Ocean Dream from Hainan Profit Summit Deluxe Cruise Ltd, Oriental Queen from Zhejiang Oriental Associated Maritime (Hong Kong) Cruise Ltd, Club Harmony from Korea’s Harmony Cruise Ltd and China Star from (Hong Kong) China Cruise Ltd.
Statistics from the China Cruise & Yacht Industry Association (CCYIA) showed China handled 504,582 cruise tourists from home and abroad last year.
“China’s robust economic growth is a strong stimulus to the development of its cruise industry,” said the report.
It said China has formed an initial cruise market with focus placed on the Yangtze River Delta, the Pearl River Delta and the Bohai Bay in the north.
Cruise companies have decided, therefore, to extend their sea routes and increase destinations, said Zheng Weihang, Executive Vice President of CCYIA.
Traditional destinations from Shanghai and Tianjin to South Korea and Japan include Busan, Inchon, Cheju, Kobe, Nagasaki, Osaka, Kagoshima and Fukuoka. But starting this year, more new destinations will be added to the traditional routes.
“Thus, tourists will have a longer journey than before to enjoy more exotic scenes,” said Zheng.
The report said six cruises from four cruise companies will open a total of 270 sea routes starting from Tianjin, Shanghai, Sanya, Hong Kong, Kaohsiung, Keelung Zhoushan, Xiamen, Qingdao and Shenzhen to nearby countries.
It said that the six ports of Tianjin, Dalian, Qingdao, Shanghai, Xiamen and Sanya are expected to receive 675,000 cruise tourists this year.