Norwegian Cruise Line CEO: Inflation will be short-lived: Travel Weekly

Norwegian Cruise Line CEO Harry Sommer said he expects inflation will be short-lived and begin to turn around in the back half of Q4 and Q1 of 2023.

He based that expectation on consultations with large investment banks, including Goldman Sachs which presented to the company’s board three weeks ago that it doesn’t see inflation as a long-term issue, he said.

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He added that a reduction in fuel prices, negative inflation from wholesalers and a strong employment market in countries where NCL sources most of its guests from, including the U.S., give him confidence.

“We really think it’s a short-term phenomenon. We’re not assuming a huge inflationary number as part of our future prices and planning. We’ll see what happens, but I don’t think it’s a long-term issue,” Sommer said while taking questions from media during the inaugural cruise of the Norwegian Prima.

“Knock on wood, things are looking very good for the last quarter of 2022 into ’23,” said Sommer.

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While inflation is high, it has cooled in July in part due to lower gas prices. Consumer prices rose 8.5% in July, which was less than expected. Inflation rose 9.1% in June.

NCL bookings are at an all-time high for 2023, Sommer said, with record prices and load factors. The Prima, Sommer added, is the “best-sold ship in the history of the company.”

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