To the surprise of nearly everyone, including cruise line executives, bookings for cruises next year are on the rise, even after last spring's onboard pandemic crises and and new outbreaks on cruises this summer by the few carriers who have restarted.
Even after accounting for last year's passengers who are holding credit vouchers for future cruises. Executives from both Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line, the second- and third-largest operators, report bookings for next year within historical averages. Royal Caribbean says that 60% of its reservations for next year are new, rather than rebookings.
Carnival, whose nine brands account for about half of the industry has not commented, but it appears that in general cruise customers may be the most loyal of travelers; airlines and hotels have yet to find that kind of love for next year.