New high-end ships are giving well-needed supply to an expanding luxury cruise market.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises opened bookings earlier this year for its new Regent Seven Seas Splendor, which will enter the fleet in 2020. The response was tremendous.
“The Splendor that doesn't start operating until 2020 had a record booking day by over 30% and that should give you a proxy by which you can think about the rest of the fleet at the upscale brands,” said Frank Del Rio, president and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings on the company’s first-quarter earnings call.
“And that's why you see, for example, as a data point, when we introduced Splendor, which doesn't come out until Q1 of 2020, how well booked she is. And that gives you an idea of the overall sense of the marketplace,” he said.
“So the booking curve is at a longer point today than it was a year ago and that's why 2019 is booked as well as it is, not to mention those very early 2020. I can't believe we're even talking about 2020. The booking curve is at a longer point today than a year ago and that's contributing certainly to our confidence to be able to raise prices along the way.”