The annual Ocean-Going Cruise Focus is now available on Travel Agent University. The robust sales guide provides cruise sellers with an in-depth lesson on “being proactive in your sales game and knowing what opportunities to tap are critical for retailers,” by detailing top-selling targets and key trends, as well as reporting on new ship developments from the industry’s leading suppliers.
Sailing Into Profits
Lesson one previews the year's noteworthy niches that can help travel advisors grow their revenue among first-time and repeat cruisers.
With one in four adults taking some type of solo trip this year, cruise suppliers, including Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International and Holland America Line, now offer single cabins and exclusive amenities to accommodate this growing niche.
Because Millennials are the first generation to have routinely taken a cruise with their parents, travel advisors are encouraged to tap into that emotional connection with suggestions targeted to Millennials’ unique needs. Among the suggested sailings are shorter cruises, expedition cruises and adventure cruises, which all appeal to Millennials’ on-the-go, adventurous spirits.
Combine Two Voyages
Some cruise lines now offer both ocean and river products to address the growing trend of “combination” of ocean and river cruise products to create a longer, more diverse vacation. Suggest one cruise for the family and one immediately after for a more relaxing couple’s getaway.
“Boomer or mature grandparents might travel with their adult children, grandchildren and even great grandchildren to Barcelona for a contemporary, fun-filled experience, but then head off when that voyage is over to a European river cruise with a pampering, wine-themed focus.”
Both Viking Cruises and Crystal Cruises offer combination sailings.
Special Interest Sailings
As the cruisers’ tastes evolve, so too has special interest sailing with a number of lines now offering themed programs, expert speakers and special itineraries to enhance the cruise experience.
Among the nearly 15 suggested sailings are luxury yacht expedition line Ponant’s new “Quintessential Collection,” which includes Sicilian Food and Wine Experience (June 28-July 6) for foodies, Treasures of the Mediterranean World: A Family Learning Adventure (July 15-22) for families, and World War II History – From Hong Kong to Japan’s Inland Sea (September 27-October 10) for history buffs.
Additionally, Holland America Line (HAL) and O, The Oprah Magazine have teamed for a three-day “Girls’ Getaway” cruise on HAL’s newest ship, Nieuw Statendam, on January 30. Oprah Winfrey will embark on the cruise, joined by O’s editor-at-large Gayle King, who will host special presentations and events onboard.
Wildlife and animal lovers can embark on Azamara Club Cruises’ “World Wildlife at Sea” — an educational experience on select voyages in partnership with World Wildlife Fund (WWF). The line’s relaunched WWF Speaker Series includes experts covering a range of topics such as marine conservation and sustainable agriculture.
Find the Ocean-Going Cruise Focus, along with training courses from Crystal Cruises, Silversea Cruises and AmaWaterways at travelagentuniversity.com.