Reporting Mike Campbell
SHELBY TWP. (WWJ) – Summer time is family travel time. And cruises are an especially hot part of the travel market this summer.
Claudia Korenic, director of operations at Cruise Holidays of Shelby Township, says people are finding cruises to be a more affordable option than other modes of travel.
“When you compare it to a land-based vacation, maybe taking your kids to Florida, versus taking them on a cruise — by the time you add up your hotel, your car rental, all your meals — your much better value is on a cruise,” Korenic said.
Kerenic said, depending on the season, a family cruise to the Caribbean, will run about $5,000. That includes a state room for four, air fare, meals and on-board entertainment. Drinks (including pop) are not included.
Korenic said Disney cruises are a little more pricey but always a favorite for families. Royal Caribbean cruises also feature Dream Works characters on-board for young cruisers’ entertainment. Most family cruise lines feature “clubs” that offer all kinds of activities to keep kids busy.
Korenic said the Costa Concordia incident (remember the cruise ship that sank off the coast of Italy?) does not seem to deter would-be cruisers. In fact, she said, it’s become a running joke.
“In fact I just got an email about that today. Somebody would like to go to Europe, and I said, ‘What would you like to cruise in?’ … ‘Anything that doesn’t sink’,” she said.
Korenic said destination cruises are also hot right now, including trips to Europe and Alaska.
The Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association said a record 15 million passengers cruised in 2010 despite trying economic times; and 12 new ships debuted from the major cruise lines. Forty-one percent of people were headed to the Caribbean, statistics showed.