Major Price Fluctuations Reported by Chinese Cruise Guests

The Pudong skyline in Shanghai at dusk
Updated Published

Sources in China report that cruise prices for the Chinese market are experiencing notable fluctuations as sailing dates approach. Prices for various cabin categories are said to have dropped significantly in the coming weeks, prompting widespread complaints from guests on social media.

"People follow us in the hope of buying at the cheapest price, but the situation has not been good in early July," one travel agency stated in a post. Meanwhile passengers have been voicing their frustrations about "almost all cruises" undergoing substantial price reductions after being booked and as sailing dates near, according to the post.

This trend of price cuts as sail dates approach was a challenge for the market even before the pandemic, often resulting in unsold cabins as guests delayed booking in hopes of further reductions. However, premium staterooms and experiences reportedly maintain stable pricing and remain in high demand.

VIP categories and luxury brand cruises are among the products not experiencing significant price changes, the travel agency noted. This trend applies to both international and local operators with sailings from ports like Shanghai and Tianjin. The itineraries include stops at destinations in Japan and South Korea, such as Fukuoka, Kobe, Sasebo, and Jeju.

China was the last major cruise market to resume operations following the pandemic-related pause and has been gradually reclaiming its place in the cruise industry.

While some local brands restarted revenue operations in 2021 and 2022, international companies returned to the market earlier this year, with Royal Caribbean and MSC making their comeback. Recently, Blue Dream Cruises joined the market with the former AIDAvita, now operating as the Blue Dream Melody.