P&O Cruises will base another two ships in Australian waters in 2015

Issues & Trends – May 2014

P&O Cruises will base another two ships in Australian waters in 2015

P&O Cruises Australia will add two ships to its fleet in November 2015, giving it a total of five ships positioned in local waters, Australia’s largest year-round fleet.

The line says a five-ship fleet will give it greater flexibility in its increased offering of short-break cruises, traditional cruises to the South Pacific and cruises to new destinations such as Papua New Guinea and Asia.

Pointing to a policy of increased collaboration among the 10 brands of P&O Cruises’ parent company, Carnival Corporation, the two ships heading for Australia will be trans-ferred from Holland America Line.

Currently sailing as ms Ryndam and ms Statendam, they are mid-range in size, similar to the three existing P&O ships in Australia – Pacific Dawn, Pacific Jewel and Pacific Pearl.

The ships will be refurbished and will include “onboard features tailored for Australian and NZ passengers,” according to the Carnival Corporation announcement.

HAL’s new 99,500 tonne, 2660 passenger Pinnacle Class ship, due for delivery in February 2016, will replace the capacity of the two vessels moving to Australia.

Explaining why his company is basing another two ships Down Under, Carnival Corporation chief executive Arnold Donald said: “By any measure, Australia is one of the top performing cruise markets in the world, with an eye-popping average annual passenger growth rate of 20 per cent over the past decade.”

A Carnival Corporation statement pointed out it is the only cruise company to have ships based full-time in Australian waters.

Over the past decade its local fleet has increased from two full-time P&O ships to six full-time ships from three of the company’s brands –P&O Cruises (three ships), Princess Cruises (two ships) and Carnival Cruise Lines (one ship).

In 2015, with P&O Cruises adding its two ships and the return of Princess Cruises’ Sun Princess full-time, that number will increase to nine.

“The announcement is an emphatic statement of confidence in Australia,” said Carnival Australia chief executive Ann Sherry.


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