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Look for 6% growth in 2018

Cruise ship

A seventh Princess ship plus the new-build Norwegian Bliss will bring more cruise passengers to Alaska next year.

With cruise capacity expected to grow approximately 6 percent in 2018, regions set for the greatest increases are Alaska, Australia and Europe, excluding the Mediterranean, according to new research by Wells Fargo Securities.

The brokerage company estimates capacity in those regions will rise by 6 to 10 percent, compared to the Caribbean and Mediterranean’s more moderate growth of 3 to 4 percent.

Wells Fargo estimates a 6 percent increase in Alaska capacity due to notable drivers, like a seventh Princess Cruises ship, Golden Princess, plus the new-build Norwegian Bliss.

“We believe Asia/Australia/New Zealand capacity will increase 5 percent to 8 percent, with China flattish, given growing diversification to Singapore/Southeast Asia and, in the winter [austral summer] season, Australia/New Zealand,” Wells Fargo analyst Tim Conder said in a note.

The Wells Fargo research looked at available lower-berth days based on announced deployments by the major cruise operators.

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