The cruise industry has had a boost with the news Carnival Corporation has confirmed an order for a new 4,000-passenger ship.
The ship will be the third in its Dream class of vessels and be part of its Carnival Cruise Lines brand.
Carnival Corporation currently has 13 new ships due for delivery between January next year and spring 2012.
Other cruise lines are expected to follow suit, with Princess Cruises and MSC Cruises as the two most likely companies to place new orders.
The news comes as industry body the Passenger Shipping Association predicts that in 2010 a upturn in the UK cruise market of 1.65m passengers.
The new ship 130,000-ton ship will be built by Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri and will launch in spring 2012.
The ship will carry 3,960 passengers and will feature many of the same facilities as Carnival Dream (pictured), which made its debut in September.
These include a spa, a water park an entertainment area and an outdoor promenade.
Fincantieri is currently building Carnival Magic, a sister ship to Carnival Dream which will enter service in May 2011.
Gerry Cahill, Carnival Cruise Lines’ president and chief executive, said: “Carnival Dream is already earning rave reviews from guests and travel agents.
“Ordering a third Dream-class ship speaks volumes about the confidence we have in the continued success of this series.
“The Dream class of ships embodies the evolution of our brand by providing the type of fun, affordable vacation that today’s consumers are seeking.”Carnival Dream Maiden Voyage from Port Canaveral