Two out of three cruisers are willing to cruise in the next year and almost six in 10 non-cruisers are willing to cruise in the coming years, according to research from cruise body Clia.

The trade association said the results of its research showed there was “optimism on the horizon” as it released its 2021 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook report outlining the sector’s economic impact, forecasts and commitment to responsible tourism practices.

Kelly Craighead, Clia president and chief executive, said: “For the cruise community, there is no denying that 2020 was not the year we anticipated. Still, the industry wasted no time adjusting course to address the challenges before us.

“With the year drawing to a close, we are pleased to share Clia’s 2021 report that highlights the extraordinary steps the cruise community took to develop and implement enhanced public health protocols to keep putting people first, while continuing to focus on innovation and responsible tourism practices that make cruising the best way to experience the world.”

The report includes a 2019 global economic impact analysis, which showed that prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, the cruise sector sustained 1,166,000 jobs, equating to $50.53 billion in wages and salaries and $154.5 billion of total output worldwide.

The report also found that passengers spent $385 in port cities before boarding a cruise and spend $100 in each visiting port destination during a cruise.

Noting that Clia member lines anticipate 16 new ocean ships entering service in 2021, the report said that in 2020, every 1% reduction in the number of cruisers resulted in the loss of 9,100 industry-related jobs, while each day of the suspension of cruises caused direct and indirect industry losses of 2,500 jobs.

Adam Goldstein, Clia chairman, said: “2020 was a year unlike any other and I am proud of how our industry has united together to weather this unparalleled pandemic.

“As we look to 2021, I know that cruisers are eager to set sail once more, just as our industry is eager to put people back to work and create unforgettable experiences for our valued guests.”

The full 2021 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook report can be viewed here.