CLIA Conference to Focus on Economy, Agents, Hall of Famers


How travel agents can maintain momentum in selling cruises during uncertain economic times, will be a key focus during the Cruise Lines International Associations’ (CLIA) cruise3sixty conference at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center, April 2-6. CLIA says the entire conference will focus on topics, tools and resources designed to help agents thrive, not just survive.

"It’s important to remember that economic downturns however severe do recover; it is not a matter of if but of when," said Terry Dale, CLIA’s president and CEO. "The challenge for cruise lines and travel agents is to do everything possible to make the 'when' sooner than later.”

CLIA’s cruise3sixty will set the tone of the conference with a keynote address by Dan Doctoroff, president of Bloomberg LP and former political pollster and deputy mayor of New York City. In another keynote address, American Express will present Barbara Corcoran, founder of a  five billion dollar real estate empire.

The cruise3sixty event will also include 15 seminars, two new brand offerings, certification credits, a trade show, 16 ship inspections and more. Participants can also take advantage of opportunities to negotiate business one-on-one with cruise lines and other industry suppliers, as well as network with colleagues. The trade show will feature hundreds of exhibiting travel suppliers, cruise lines and other resources.

CLIA also recently named its 2009 Hall of Fame inductees, selecting four individuals for their  influence in shaping the cruise industry. The 2009 inductees include: Edwin W. Stephan, a founder and past president of Royal Caribbean Cruise Line; Walter Sherota, founder of Gold Coast Cruises; and Josephine Kling and Joyce Landry, founders of Landry & Kling, Inc.. The induction will take place during the at the gala dinner of cruise3sixty.

In its fifth year, the Cruise Industry Hall of Fame selected based on nominations from CLIA’s membership, review by a nominating committee made up of the Travel Agency Advisory Board (TAAB) and cruise line members, and approval by CLIA’s Executive Committee.

Inductees are chosen in three categories: cruise retailer (Walter Sherota), cruise line executive (Edwin W. Stephan) and an “at large” category that may be any individual, such as a retailer or cruise line executive, a politician, publisher, or shipbuilder, whose accomplishments warrant nomination (Landry and Kling).


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