Who wants more Princess Cruises ships sailing around Australia? If you eagerly shouted ‘me’ then here’s some good news, you’re getting exactly what you want.
Princess Cruises has a “huge year” planned for Australia in 2019, not only in the number of ships cruising around the country but the itineraries on offer and the onboard food and entertainment.
In a Q&A with KARRYON, Sales and Marketing Director Nick Ferguson said 2019/2020 would be the cruise line’s “biggest” out of Australia with 900+ days deployment on five ships on itineraries from Sydney, Fremantle, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane and Auckland.
He said the record-breaking season wouldn’t be possible without demand from the local market and investment from Princess Cruises HQ, which was kind enough to send Majestic Princess back to Australia for a second season, while Ruby Princess makes her debut.
Beyond the next wave season, Ferguson explained that the cruise line would spend 2019 preparing for the 2020/21 season, which will see Regal Princess cruise to Australia for an exciting season of new technology, ground-breaking onboard entertainment and more.
“We have a huge year lined up for 2019.”
Nick Ferguson, Princess Cruises Sales and Marketing Director
Read on for more of our chat with Nick:
2018 was a ‘bright’ one for Princess having received a Hollywood star – how did that come about?
Thank you! The star was awarded to Princess Cruises and the original cast of The Love Boat. We were presented a Hollywood Walk of Fame Honourary Star Plaque in recognition of our contributions to the history of television and support for the preservation of the Walk of Fame.
I’m yet to see the star in person, but I do know we’re positioned right in front of the iconic Dolby Theatre which is exciting.
You also confirmed this year that Australia would receive another cruise ship – Regal Princess. What do you think Australians will love about the vessel?
With her 330-metre length taller than the height of the Sydney Tower, Regal Princess will offer a variety of enticing features guests will be familiar with on sister ship, Majestic Princess, including 13 dining venues, a soaring atrium, a dramatic over-the-ocean glass walkway, the SeaWalk, extending more than eight metres beyond the edge of the ship, plush private poolside cabanas, the Princess Live! television studio, a dedicated pastry shop, a special Chef’s Table Lumiere private dining experience as well as 1780 staterooms, with balconies on all outside staterooms.
What changes will be made onboard to accommodate the Aussie market?
We recently announced that we are preparing Regal Princess as the second ship fully activated with Princess MedallionClass. Australians can look forward to tailored experiences onboard that take service to the next level. Considered a breakthrough in the cruise industry and recently honoured with a CES® 2019 Innovation Award, the OceanMedallion features leading-edge technology that delivers personalised service through enhanced guest-crew interactions, eliminates friction points and enables interactive entertainment.
In regards to food, 90 percent of all food onboard Princess ships are sourced locally so when Australian guests arrive on Regal Princess they will be dining on fresh local flavours.
Princess has a strong presence in Australia, thanks to its ships and the strength of its sister brands, how are planning to build on your brand awareness over the coming year?
We have a huge year lined up for 2019. The stories we’ll be telling will be:
2019/2020 will be our biggest Australian season in history; the record-breaking 900+ day deployment will see Princess carry more guests than ever onboard five ships on itineraries from Sydney, Perth (Fremantle), Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane and Auckland. We’re excited for the second season return of Majestic Princess and the maiden arrival of Ruby Princess to Australia.
Ruby Princess will arrive in Australia with a host of new features that guests will love, including new menu items from Chef Curtis Stone’s hugely popular onboard restaurant, SHARE.
Anticipation is building for the announcement of our 2020/21 Australia season itineraries – spearheaded by the arrival of Regal Princess in Australia.
We’re looking forward to welcoming Sky Princess to our fleet where she will make her debut in the Mediterranean in October 2019, the 143,700-tonne ship will include the best of the stunning features found on its three sister ships – Royal Princess, Regal Princess and Majestic Princess – as well as new offerings that represent an evolution of the current ships’ designs.
We’re also celebrating 50 years of cruising Alaska in 2019.
Aside from local itineraries, how much has the fly/cruise market from Australia grown for Princess since it started basing ships here?
As the destination experts, fly-cruise numbers are only set to increase in 2019. One of the trends we’ve seen in Australia in the last 10-15 years is that as the market expands, people say: ‘I want to go further afield for my next cruise’.
Asia may soon overtake Europe as the number one long haul destination for Australian cruisers, Australian demand for Japan is particularly high, and it’s the fastest growing destination over the past five years with 175 percent growth in visits since 2011. Alaska is as a hot destination, and in 2019 we’ll be celebrating our 50th year cruising the region.
- READ: MedallionClass to be activated on Regal Princess
- READ: Princess Cruises unveils Sky Princess features
- READ: Princess Cruises ‘enchants’ future ship with Sky Suites
Which Princess ship are you keen to cruise on?
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