As more and more travelers feel confident planning vacations months in advance, cruise bookings are up across the board. Holland America Line has seen record-breaking interest in its diverse offering of itineraries, particularly for Alaska, and Black Friday sales have significantly surpassed the line’s 2019 pre-pandemic numbers.
Bookings Sail Past 2019 Numbers
With great interest in Holland America Line’s Black Friday incentives, which have included $25 deposits on select sailings, up to 40% off cruises, prepaid gratuities, and more, the cruise line has seen phenomenal bookings.
“Our guests went on a shopping spree this weekend, and it wasn’t at the mall,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line.
Booking volume – the overall number of reservations – was up close to 20% higher than on Black Friday in 2019, and for Alaska sailings in particular, U.S. bookings were up more than 60% compared to 2019.
When comparing the full holiday weekend sales from Black Friday through Cyber Monday, overall bookings were up more than 10%, and Alaska bookings were up more than 25%.
“We are very pleased to see pent-up demand for cruising play out in such a significant way,” said Antorcha. “Especially in Alaska where we are the pioneers of cruise travel and the only cruise line with owned land operations in Denali and Yukon.”
Special Interest in Alaska
So much demand for Alaska cruises is not surprising, as that once-in-a-lifetime destination has been even more inaccessible to cruise travelers during the pandemic, with strict health and safety protocols imposed by Canada that greatly restricted operations in Alaska even after cruising resumed in 2021.
Canada finally eased cruise travel restrictions from October 1, 2022, more than a year after cruising restarted in the Caribbean, Mexico, and Europe.
Holland America Line has the longest passenger operation history in Alaska of any major cruise line, and just concluded its 75th season in the Last Frontier in early October.
While every cruise line has seen great demand for Alaska sailings, Holland America Line stands out not only for its history in the region, but for the unique options it offers as well as the line’s overall excellence.
“The strong bookings are an encouraging sign for our brand and the continued strength of cruising,” Antorcha said. “Guests come to Holland America Line for our unmatched service and culinary offerings and our unique longer voyages.”
Not only does the line offer diverse itineraries, each cruise can be combined with land tour options to offer even more in-depth exploration and discovery in Alaska, without compromising Holland America Line’s signature service.
In 2023, the cruise line will operate six vessels in Alaska from April through September: both Signature-class vessels Eurodam and Nieuw Amsterdam, sister Vista-class ships Noordam and Westerdam, the Rotterdam-class Volendam, and the Pinnacle-class Koningsdam.
The diversity of classes will give passengers plenty of options to customize their onboard experience, and together, the six vessels – which represent 55% of Holland America Line’s fleet – will offer 121 different cruises during the Alaska season.
Three homeports will serve as departure points for Holland America Line’s Alaska cruise options – Vancouver, Seattle, and Whittier – giving guests great flexibility with their travel plans, as well as offering amazing experiences in each destination.
Holland America Line’s Black Friday deals continue through December 1, with a new special – a 10% bonus gift card – beginning December 2, making it the perfect holiday gift for any Alaska adventurer.