Strong Cruise Industry Demand Bodes Well for 2023 “Wave Season”

Strong Cruise Industry Demand Bodes Well for 2023 “Wave Season” 

by Jim Corridore , Senior Analyst 2 Min.
November 7, 2022 | Updated November 16, 2022

Interest in cruising remains high, but consumers spend more time looking for deals

The cruise industry was one of the last travel sectors to rebound from the pandemic. After a shutdown that began in March 2020 and lasted more than a year (resumption dates varied across the industry), it took until March 2022 for cruise industry demand to return to pre-pandemic levels. It appears demand remains robust entering holiday 2022, as well as for 2023 wave season. Wave season is January-March, when consumers tend to book their cruises for the following year.

“Cruise interest spiked higher than demand for almost any other travel sector as restrictions on the industry lifted this year, partially due to extreme pent-up demand and advertising pushes from the cruise lines, especially premium ones,” said Similarweb Industry Manager Alisha Kapur, who did a deep dive into industry trends. “Premium lines have also gained share due to lower pricing generally over the last few years. As consumer wallets shrink, cruisers are hungry for discounts, with ‘deal’ searches hitting a 10-month peak in July.”

Key takeaways 

  • Cruise demand remains elevated, as shown by web traffic growth above most other travel sectors.
  • “Deal” searches hit a ten-month peak in July and will likely spike again in November.
  • Cruise industry-wide conversion rates (percentage of website visits that result in a sale) have nearly doubled since 2019.
  • Super Premium brands have grown their share of traffic by 35% over the past three years.

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Report By: Jim Corridore, Senior Insights Manager


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