Travel Trade Journal
Reshaping the cruise industry in Asia post COVID
As economies gradually recover from the post-ripple effect of the global pandemic, the cruise tourism industry is also making a comeback, especially in Asia, reinventing itself to adapt to a highly fluid landscape, giving life to new brands that are more resilient and innovative. As a new homegrown Asian brand launched in mid-2022, Resorts World Cruises aims to carve itself a place in the new cruise world order.
We are truly living in unique times as companies adapt to find their foothold in the grand scheme of things. Though deeply impacted by the global pandemic, the cruise industry is also finding its place, emerging as a leading tourism sector with promising potential growth. The global pandemic had indeed put a temporary halt to the growth of the cruise industry. Still, on the flip side, it had enabled cruise lines to regroup and reset their operations at unprecedented speed to enhance their overall operations. Most importantly, it has created new opportunities, breathing life into new companies with promising potential, such as the launch of Resorts World Cruises in Asia.
Headquartered in Singapore, Resorts World Cruises is a new dynamic lifestyle cruise brand with a deep-rooted Asian heritage; and over 50 years of valuable affiliated experience in the global cruise, hospitality, and entertainment industry, which had emerged out of an opportunity to fill an important void in the Asian cruise sector. The inception of Resorts World Cruises is timely and necessary in reshaping and rebuilding the blocks of the cruising sector in a post-COVID era. As a new cruise line, Resorts World Cruises has taken affirmative steps and initiatives to grow its brand and boost the cruise industry across the different countries in Asia.
Resorts World Cruises started its deployment with the Genting Dream in Singapore in mid-June 2022. Soon enough, a month after, it added Kuala Lumpur (via Port Klang) in Malaysia as part of the only dual homeport in the region. By doing so, Resorts World Cruises paved the way in reshaping and reigniting the cruise sector at an accelerated rate, which boosted the
cruise industry’s development across wider market segments. As a new and lean cruise line, Resorts World Cruises was able to focus with precision on what is needed to position itself as a leading cruise line in the region, despite being a new player.
Focussing on domestic markets is important but will not suffice if the cruise sector is to thrive in the region. As such, the Fly-Cruise segment is crucial to supporting the continued growth of the cruise tourism industry. For instance, in the region, India, Malaysia, and Indonesia remain the key source markets for the Fly-Cruise segment in Singapore, and the dual homeports are now widening the reach of the Fly-Cruise markets for more neighbouring countries. And this is where Resorts World Cruises continue to redefine and excel in tailoring its offerings to support the development of these markets.
new opportunities convenient to different segments is crucial in ensuring that cruising remains an attractive vacation option, especially with more travel options now available post-COVID. For example, Resorts World Cruises is the only OIC/SMIIC (Organisation of Islamic Cooperation/ Standards and Metrology Institute for Islamic Countries) standard Halalfriendly cruise ship which offers Halal and authentic Jain Vegetarian certified cuisines in dedicated venues.
At Resorts World Cruises, we remain optimistic about the cruise industry in 2023 as we continue to adopt a holistic and realistic approach to our operations based on the evolving global situation. However, 2023 will still be a relatively transition year with a higher pace of growth. As travel options gradually increase and return to the norm, vacationers will have more options. As such, one of the biggest challenges for the cruise industry is enticing consumers to opt for cruising as a choice vacation. In addition, cruising in the region will also become more competitive in 2023 as new players enter the Southeast Asian market.
In terms of cruise itineraries, there will be more demand for additional new destinations. As such, the launch of Resorts World Cruises’ Phuket destination through a series of special 5 Night cruises that started in November 2022 and the upcoming 3 Night cruises from May 2023 onwards will further fuel demand. In addition, noticeable trends that we foresee will continue in 2023 will include more young travellers joining us for a cruise, which includes millennials, couples, young families, groups of friends, and families and multi-generation families. We also hope to see greater growth from the ongoing potential segments, including the FlyCruise and the MICE sector.