Back in late March, I travelled to Budapest for the CLIA RiverView 2022 conference. While this wasn’t the first industry-specific in-person event to be held since the easing of restrictions, it was my reintroduction to CLIA gatherings – and what a three days it was.
Aside from the joy of exploring the city and many ships, one of the most pleasing parts of the trip was the ease of travel. There were no pre-departure tests, locator forms or piles of documents to concern myself with.
All I needed was my passport; it felt, dare I say it, like it used to. I had forgotten how travel soothes my soul and puts a smile on my face. While some destinations still have restrictions in place, there is a general trend toward hassle-free travel once again.
As for the meat and bones of the event, education, sustainability and longer itineraries are the river trends to keep an eye on. As CLIA UK & Ireland chair ben boudin said in Budapest: “We know that river has an innate ability to immerse people in a destination… there is an opportunity to grow river cruise.” You can read more about this in our coverage in The Briefing.
The final part of our special series on sustainability leads us to investigate the use of hydrogen, while our interview is with Marie-Caroline Laurent, who last year was appointed director general for CLIA in Europe. Laurent has bold plans, not least in developing the sectors engagement with regulatory powers and governments.
We also take a closer look at Portsmouth Port’s plans and speak to Ambassador Cruise Line.
Enjoy until next time.