Miami-based cruise company Carnival Corporation plans to further expand its operations in China with the deployment of two additional cruise brands to serve this booming cruise market from 2017 onward.
Carnival Cruise Line and AIDA Cruises will homeport one new ship each in China in 2017, and in doing so join Costa Cruises and Princess Cruises in the Chinese market.
“We are excited to introduce our Carnival Cruise Line and AIDA Cruises brands to our fleet in China, giving us a total of four global cruise brands in the market and a unique opportunity to provide a diverse lineup of brands and cruise offerings to Chinese guests who are looking for a great vacation experience,” said Carnival CEO Arnold Donald, who was in Shanghai to announce the news at the 10th Annual China Cruise Shipping and International Cruise Expo (CCS10).
“As we execute our multi-brand growth strategy in China, we are emphasizing choice and variety in our offerings to match the different tastes and preferences of Chinese travelers.”
Carnival’s existing brands already sailing in China – Costa Cruises and Princess Cruises – will continue to expand in 2016 with each brand introducing a new ship to its fleet in China in 2016, making Carnival the first global cruise company with six total ships based in China.
The expansion of Carnival Corporation’s China fleet to six ships will represent a 58 percent increase in total capacity in China in 2016, including three year-round ships and three seasonal ships in the market.
Princess Cruises announced last week the name of its new ship that will be based year-round in China when it is introduced in summer 2017. Based in Shanghai, the all-new Majestic Princess will be the first year-round cruise ship built specifically for Chinese guests.
Carnival Corporation is also exploring potential joint ventures in China with China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) and China Merchants Group (CMG) designed to accelerate the growth of the overall cruise industry in China, including the possibility of launching a Chinese domestic cruise brand, building new ships in China, and supporting port and infrastructure development.