Disney Cruise Line Named The Harris Poll’s 2016 Cruise Brand of the Year

The Harris Poll recently released their list of 2016 Brands of the Year. Disney Cruise Line was named as the leading cruise line brand in the travel category. Royal Caribbean International which garnered the accolade in 2015 placed second this year followed by Norwegian Cruise Line and Holland America Cruise Line. Disney Cruise Line last earned Brand of the Year in 2014. Cruise Lines that fall below the category average are listed alphabetically in the summary below.

Harris Poll Rankings History Cruise Lines 2016

According to the Harris Poll study, Disney Cruise Line leads in most equity metrics, including familiarity and quality.

“Disney benefits from its ‘masterbrand’ equity, as well as its position as the family cruise line for Gen X and millennial parents,” said Joan Sinopoli, vice president of brand solutions at Nielsen, which owns the Harris Poll.

While Carnival Cruise Lines does not appear on this year’s EquiTrend ranking, its equity score has improved since the brand’s crises of 2012 and 2013, increasing 12.6 percent in the past three years.

“What’s interesting about cruise lines is that each generation has their favorite cruise line brand,” said Sinopoli. “Disney displays the highest brand equity among Generation X, which makes sense given it is the largest generation with younger children. Norwegian Cruise Line and its ‘freestyle cruising’–with the freedom to dress up or down, no set dining times and no fixed schedule–is popular with millennials, and baby boomers bestow Holland America, known for its elegant yet laid back atmosphere, the highest equity ratings.”

The 28th annual EquiTrend Study, revealed the strongest brands in nearly 100 categories across the media, travel, financial, automotive, entertainment, retail, restaurants and household industries, based on consumer response.

The list is determined by measuring a brands health over time, the EquiTrend Brand Equity Index is comprised of three factors  Familiarity, Quality and Purchase Consideration which result in a brand equity rating. Brands ranking highest in equity receive the Harris Poll EquiTrend® “Brand of the Year” award for their respective categories. This year, more than 97,000 U.S. consumers assessed more than 3,800 brands across nearly 500 categories. The complete list of Harris Poll EquiTrend Brands of the Year can be found here.

2 Replies to “Disney Cruise Line Named The Harris Poll’s 2016 Cruise Brand of the Year”

  1. John

    You couldn’t pay me to cruise with Carnival. My wife and I cruised with RCL on our Honeymoon and had a wonderful time.

    1. Ewan

      Funny you should mention that…

      My friend and I cruised DCL for the first time in February and had a wonderful time. When we were in port at St. Thomas we shared the cable car with a couple who were on Carnival. The guy was a “close stander” and kept getting in our space… anyway, after we got off they offered to take a picture of us, so we accepted and then returned the favor. My friend said “Oh, hey, there’s your ship, want me to get in the background?” The guy’s wife just said “whatever.” Not as a joke or anything. They just genuinely seemed to be the walking dead. And that’s my impression of Carnival.


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