19 November 2009
Yesterday one of our regular customers booked a cruise from Buenos Aires, Argentina to Santiago, Chile—a 12-day voyage around the bottom of South America. He’s going in February which is peak summertime in the destination. Some of his stops include Montevideo, Uruguay, the Falkland Islands and Ushuaia, Argentina (the world’s southernmost city), as well as a passage through the Straits of Magellan, before ending in Santiago, Chile.
While his itinerary is rather routine for a South America cruise, it is symbolic of a larger trend of cruisers who want to visit more unusual places on their cruise vacation. And the cruise lines are adding new destinations at a record pace to satisfy the increased in interest in new ports to visit and experience. New additions might be Longyearben Island in the far north, or a port in Greenland, or Iceland. The options continue to expand for 2010.
Other places seeing significant expansion include cruises to Egypt, Israel, Turkey, Greece and Italy, or to the Black Sea and the Crimea. With the growth in fleet size the cruise lines are scrambling to find places they can send their older ships that will keep them full, and the winner is all of us.
While these more exotic cruises are becoming more prevalent, they do tend to be longer and a little more complex to book and experience. They might require special visas, inoculations, or other details, but, with enough planning time, none of those things is a problem.