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14 March 2012 08:28
The total number of people booking ocean cruises in 2011 was up 5% to 1.7 million, figures show
Last year saw a record number of Britons embarking on cruise holidays, with travel experts claiming the increasing diversity on offer is boosting appeal.
The Passenger Shipping Association (PSA) said there were around 700,000 new cruisers in 2011, with some 1.7 million people enjoying an ocean cruise.
The PSA said this was a rise of 5% compared to the previous year.
Leading destinations included the Canaries and Madeira, with nearly a fifth more visitors for the Atlantic Islands.
But the most popular choice for potential
cruise travel insurance customers in the UK was the Mediterranean, just ahead of northern Europe.
PSA director William Gibbons said: "The exceptional value, high standards and choice of destinations have contributed to a record number of British passengers taking a cruise in 2011.
"The increased costs of fly-cruise holidays have led to more people joining their cruise at one of the UK's 50 ports. The sheer diversity of the cruise market means there is a holiday for everyone."
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