MANILA – Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (RCL) continues to expand in Asia enjoying unprecedented growth. In an exclusive interview, Sean Treacy, managing director for Asia Pacific of Royal Caribbean International (RCI) said, ”It’s been a remarkable growth having started in Asia in 2007 with just 6 sailings out of Singapore aboard Rhapsody of the Seas, a 2,000-passenger ship. We did roughly 14,000 guests traveling around Asia on that first year.”
Now on its 10th year, the company employs 6 ships traveling around Asia Pacific as a double-digit growth opened opportunities for bigger ships to comply with the increasing demand. The Quantum of the Seas and Ovation of the Seas each carries 4,100 passengers that is double the capacity 10 years ago.
China, the main contributor of tourists in the world, is credited to be the main driving force of the surge of the cruising industry in the region but Treacy also enumerates Australia, Indonesia, and India with double-digit growth.
The Philippines role
“The Philippines plays an important role in many ways,” Treacy imparts, ”Obviously, we source a lot of our employees from the Philippines and we are not just getting more and more guests from your country resulting in double-digit growth as well; but it is also a cruise destination on its own.”
Treacy gives this out as he relayed that RCCL will have five ships visiting the Philippines—two Royal Caribbean ships including the highly acclaimed Ovation of the Seas, two Celebrity lines, and one Azamara Club ship. They will make port calls into Manila and Boracay in 2018 with the Ovation of the Seas making its maiden call to Subic Port in October 2018.
Travel Update also asked about the possibilities of more employment opportunities in RCI’s ships and Tracy relayed positively that their company already has a training facility and processing center in Manila.
“We will continue to recruit Filipinos as the Philippines is our number one employee source market and we are proud of that. We make beautiful ships but what brings people back to cruising is the service, and we have very good success with our Filipino employees who bring excellent service.”