Holiday makers from Belgium are increasingly choosing to cruise, according to the annual survey completed by the Cruise Line International Association (CLIA).
3,000 more passengers booked a cruise in 2017, bringing a record number of 71,000 Belgian cruise passengers for the year alone. This is a significant increase of almost 4.5 per cent against 2016. The three most popular cruise destinations chosen by Belgians are the Mediterranean Sea, Northern Europe and the Caribbean.
The Mediterranean remains the number one cruising region for a third of Belgian holidaymakers, despite a small decline in numbers against 2016.
In 2017, Northern Europe was the second most popular cruise choice and was up 13 per cent compared with 2016, and in third place, the Caribbean saw a significant rise in passengers of up to 10 per cent more passengers from the Belgian Kingdom.
A boom in short cruises of two to three days – showing a 37 per cent on 2016 figures – is a great sign that more people are trying a cruise for the first time as these are excellent entry-level choices.
Key figures for CLIA Belgium:
- Almost 4.5 per cent more travellers chose to cruise in 2017.
- Over a third of Belgian passengers chose western and central Mediterranean itineraries.
- For an over seven percent drop in eastern Mediterranean destinations, due to socio-political issues in the area, there is a 8.3 per cent increase in Northern Europe, and nearly 28 percent growth of Caribbean, but also the Baltics and Canary Islands, even with a limited number of Belgian passengers saw a significant increase of Belgians with over 90.5 per cent more in the Baltics and a 276.5 per cent increase in the Canary Islands against 2016.
Asia and China also became new route options for Belgian travelers.
- The Caribbean remains the first choice after European itineraries with 21,000 people booking a cruise to the islands
- The average cruise length in Belgium is of 7.9 days
- Youngest travelers average 49 years and stay on board for 6-8 day
Youngest travelers average 49 years and stay on board for 6-8 days whilst over 60 years old can stay between 12 to 17 days at sea.