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Cruise market reports increase in bookings

altMarch 19- Costa Cruise's Dubai arm has said the winter bookings for 2009-2010 have gone up by 40 per cent as compared to the same period last year."The booking trend for the summer time has slightly improved this year and we have already had quite a number of people booking, three to four months in advance," said Francesca Mugnari, sales and marketing manager at Costa Cruises UAE and Gulf. 

Cruises have been a popular choice for holiday getaways for Dubai residents during the global financial crisis, said Mugnari. "People are more concerned about value for money and cruises are becoming an alternative holiday," she added.  Meanwhile, major liners cut ticket prices by ten to 20 per cent in 2009 to attract consumers. That enticed holidaymakers aboard and filled the ships with 13.4 million passengers, up by 430,000 passengers from 2008, according to statistics from the Cruise Lines International Association.

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