Royal Caribbean International is increasing the length of its Dubai-based season for the 2,501-guest ship Brilliance of the Seas during the winter 2011-2012 season due to feedback from travel professionals that there is yet more demand for these cruises.
Brilliance of the Seas debuted cruises from the United Arab Emirates in January 2010 with the ship operating a series of eight-night fly/cruise cruises until April 2010. Sales for 2009 and 2010 in UK and Ireland were 30 percent ahead of target for the cruise line’s first four-month season from Dubai. Agent feedback that they enjoyed significant client interest for cruises in the Middle East as well as the strong airlift from across the country direct to Dubai, drove the decision to increase the number of cruises on offer during the third season in the region. The ship’s return to Dubai in November 2011, two months earlier than previously planned, will offer an increased range of itineraries including longer cruises up to 12- and even 18-nights.
Jo Rzymowska, associate vice president and general manager, Royal Caribbean International, UK and Ireland, commented:
“Dubai is very popular with UK & Irish travellers, and cruises consistently offer significant value for money. We have adjusted the itinerary based on our trade partner feedback and replaced Bahrain with an overnight stay in Muscat. Also included within this cruise itinerary is an overnight stay in the city onboard the ship at the end of the cruise which makes this an affordable way to enjoy this fascinating Emirate. The chance to explore more of the Middle East, Arabian Sea and even India make these additional longer sailings truly exciting options for agents to maximise”.
The enhanced 2011-2012 Dubai-based season of Brilliance of the Seas will be the ship’s third year based from the destination following a second year of winter cruises from January until April 2011. New itineraries offered during the longer six-month season, include a 12-night Dubai and India cruise featuring ports of call such as Muscat, Oman; Cochin, Goa and Mumbai, India. Brilliance of the Seas also will feature the first ever call by a Royal Caribbean International ship to the New Mangalore port in Panambur on the west coast of India. The town is famed for its beautiful beaches on the Arabian Sea, the Nandaneshwara Temple and the Gurupura River.
During the 2011-2012 season, Royal Caribbean International will continue to offer the popular seven-night cruises departing weekly from Dubai. In fact, there will be double the number of seven-night itineraries compared to previous years, with minor changes to the itinerary including an overnight stay in Dubai at the end of the cruise, rather than the beginning, and a revised order in the ports of call to simplify visa processing. Featured ports of call include Fujairah and Abu Dhabi in the UAE and Muscat, Oman. The 7-night itineraries for the upcoming 2010-2011 season also will reflect these changes.
The repositioning cruise from Barcelona to Dubai will be an 18-night option via the Suez Canal and ports of call such as Alexandria, Egypt; Suez Canal passage; Aqaba, Jordan and Safaga, Egypt.