Gone are the days when cruise passengers would sit idly on deckchairs during the day and endure the on-board cabaret by night – tech is taking over.
Most ship operators talk up their facilities and entertainment as being ultra-modern, creating (to paraphrase) “more than just a traditional cruise trip experience” – a marketing ploy aimed squarely at attracting a new breed of cruise trip fans.
This is working to a fair degree, of course (operators are building more ships, opening more routes), but at least one survey has illustrated that cruise lines need to remember that passengers want to be catered for in the technology department, too.
A survey by metasearch site CruiseCompare of 2,000 Brits that have bought a cruise holiday asked them about their technology needs on-board.
More than four in five (83%) say they have used some form of technology when on a cruise holiday.
Leading the list of items or services being used is, perhaps surprisingly, the web with 76%, closely followed by MP3 players (69%).
The interesting point here is that using the web on a cruise ship is arguably not one of life’s cheapest activities, but there is clearly a desire by passengers to keep connected to the outside world.
Other forms of technology being used are mobile phones (52% – again, perhaps not particularly a cost-effective use of trip spending money), Kindle-type devices (31%), personal laptops (23%), gaming consoles (14%) and tablets such as the iPad (9%).
But why are passengers using these forms of technology for during a trip?
Perhaps most significantly – and in top place – is a strange answer that illustrates the ubiquitous nature of technology in everyday lives: “out of habit”, achieving 35% of the vote.
Other reasons include:
- Entertainment – 31%
- Keeping in contact with home – 29%
- Work – 27%
- Researching ports and destinations – 12%
- Boredom – 6%
- Shopping – 2%