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Married baby boomers heart of cruise market

There`s really no such thing as a typical cruise vacationer anymore…

There`s really no such thing as a typical cruise vacationer anymore. From rich and famous celebrities to the family next door, all kinds of people enjoy cruises these days.

A recent analysis of the cruise market for the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) by TNS Plog Research, however, provides a snapshot of today`s cruise buyer as a married Baby Boomer who has a current passport, loves to travel and does so frequently. Based on the current American Traveler Survey, here are some quick facts about the prime candidates to visit a CLIA member travel agency to plan a cruise vacation:

Baby Boomers are the heart of the cruise market. Thirty-four percent of cruisers are between the ages of 35 and 54. Three in four (76 percent) cruisers are married, and two in five (44 percent) are college graduates. Only one in four (25 percent) cruisers is retired.

Families are an important segment of the cruise market. While a spouse is the most likely cruise companion, 16 percent of cruisers bring children under age 18 along on a cruise.

Cruisers are frequent travelers. They average 3.8 vacation trips a year and 18.6 nights away from home. Recent cruisers (those who have taken a cruise in the past three years) average 4.5 leisure trips a year and 20.8 nights out of town.

Cruisers allocated nearly twice as much to leisure travel as the average vacationer – an average of $4,083 for all cruisers and $5,135 for recent cruisers.

Most cruise vacationers go back to sea again and again. The average cruiser has taken three (2.8) cruises in his lifetime, and two of them (1.6) occurred within the past three years.

Cruisers rely on travel agents. As many as nine out of 10 (89 percent) cruisers used a travel agent to book their last cruise.

When cruisers are compared to visitors to such locales as Orlando, Nevada and Branson, additional differences come to light: Recent cruisers are among the most venturesome of leisure travelers. They seek new experiences, search for undiscovered destinations and are quite comfortable in other cultures.
The potential for more international travel is especially strong among cruisers, as 61 percent have a current passport, compared to 44 percent of Orlando visitors, 45 percent of Nevada visitors and 35 percent of Branson visitors.

Recent cruisers are less likely to take a short trip but more likely (81 percent) to take a long vacation (four or more nights) than Orlando, Nevada or Branson visitors.

Theodore Koumelis
Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.