Costa Cruises will be increasing its capacity by 12% next year when its fleet of ships grows to 14.
The Italian cruiseline is focusing on worldwide destinations such as the Far East, Dubai and the Indian Ocean for 2009 and expects UK customers to show an interest in the long haul cruises. It is the first time Costa will sail around Canada.
The company is doubling its capacity in the Far East and Dubai. It also has a larger ship, Costa Europa, which will be sailing in the Indian Ocean.
Costa Cruises UK managing director Marco Rosa said that with its two new ships, Costa Luminosa and Costa Pacifica, to be launched in spring 2009, the line will offer more choice.
He also said that Costa felt there was no need to have ex-UK sailing for 2009.
He said: “We have a few sailings that arrive in the UK, but no ex-UK sailings – not at this stage. There is enough capacity here at the moment.
“If you consider our destinations, I don’t think there are any other cruise lines covering four continents. We offer customers a choice – a different destination.
“Last year we grew our UK business by 83% and next year we expect growth in the UK.”
Rosa did say, however, that Europe is still a key focus for the company and in September 2009 there will be a point when 12 of its 14 ships will be in the mediterranean.
Costa Cruises will have five new ships, including Costa Luminosa and Costa Pacifica, in its fleet by 2012 with a total investment of 2.4 billion euros.