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What’s Your Opinion? Is Luxury Cruise Discounting Helping or Hurting Your Business?February 23, 2009 By: David Eisen
It's a good time to be a cruiser. The economy may stink, but the result has been unprecedented savings and incntives on luxury cruises. Before, many vacationers thought it was out of their means to try out a Regent, Crystal, Seabourn or Silversea product. Not anymore.
Silversea has just expanded its Silver Sailing program to include savings of 50 percent on many of the voyages, not to mention an array of different perks such as free or reduced air and 1,000 onboard spending credits.
An example is the $1,000 spending credit available on Silver Shadow's July 20, 12-day Alaska cruise sailing roundtrip from San Francisco. Silver Sailing cruise fares start at $4,747 per person—a savings of 50 percent in all categories—plus free roundtrip economy air from over 70 U.S. and Canadian gateway cities.
A full list of Silver Sailing voyages eligible for half-off savings can be found at www.silversea.com.
Meanwhile, fellow luxury line Seabourn announced it is reducing its fares on European cruises in 2009 by 50 to
65 percent off the published brochure fares. The new fares start from
$2,999 per person for a seven-day Mediterranean voyage.
For its newest ship, the 450-guest Seabourn Odyssey, which debuts June 24, fares start from only $3,299 per person.
Seabourn says the adjusted fares apply to 49 voyages of seven to 16 days, departing between June 13 and October 24, 2009. The percentage of savings varies by suite category, by departure date and by the length of the voyage.
Crystal is extending $2,000 per couple shipboard spending credit, which can be used toward shore excursions, spa treatments, alcohol, store purchases or gratuities. Sorry, using that $2000 shipboard credit on gambling is not allowed.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises is including airfare, shore excursions and free sailing for children on many summer Europe cruises. And, we'd be remiss to not mention that it is offering commission on shore excursions and on extras like port and government fees beginning in 2010.
What Do You Think?
Are discounts in the luxury cruise arena spurring new business for you? Please vote in our poll to the right and share your opinion by posting a comment below.
You can discuss this topic, among many others, with fellow agents at AgentNation. If you haven't signed up yet, do so today and be a part of the first online social community exclusively for all travel agents.