Rough Waters Ahead For Cruising? Royal Caribbean Cuts 400 Jobs
Hard times for the world of cruising? Royal Caribbean Cruises announced today that they have cut 400 jobs and are making other cost-cutting measures to reduce annual expenses by $125 million. Chairman and CEO Richard Fain has named soaring fuel prices and the economic downturn as a factor in the moves. The announcement followed lower-than-expected second quarter earnings. So far though, bookings have been holding up well with no decline in the number of people booking cruises. The last few years have been strong for the cruise industry as the growing number of baby boomers have fueled the upscale cruising market. I suspect that the economic fallout for the cruise industry may be slower to occur since cruises are often booked farther in advance. Royal Caribbean's dramatic cost cutting may be a way to try and head off the storms ahead.