Cruiseco plots course to recovery
THE Cruiseco consortium firmly believes there is considerable pent-up demand for cruising, and is working hard to prepare new products and support its members as they begin marketing to their clients again.
This week the wholesaler released the first in a new podcast series, which includes an interview with Cruiseco cofounder Kevin Dale, who told listeners “it’s like we’re living in two different worlds”.
“There’s the media side of things, who have no experience, empathy or understanding of cruising, and then there’s the other side - as many of you know from your own clients - we estimate there’s about 40% of past passengers who’ve already told us they will travel again as soon as they’re allowed to, because they have complete faith in the management of the cruise lines through their own experience and seeing how everything works on board.”
Dale said Cruiseco had been told “very reliably from CLIA” that the cruise lines are doing a lot of work behind the scenes, with embarkation procedures being the last piece of the puzzle, because “as you know, the virus doesn’t happen on the ship, it’s brought on”.
The Cruiseco podcast also sees interim CEO Nic Cola discussing new product with Dean Sinclair, who confirmed the group is working closely with several key cruise line suppliers to develop product for the post-COVID era, through 2021 and into 2022.
New ideas and concepts include establishing relationships with new suppliers around the world who can offer more unique experiences for Cruiseco packages, including growing opportunities for cruises to be combined with train journeys in Asia, Europe and the Americas.
Sinclair also confirmed Cruiseco was working with Journey Beyond to create product around their luxury train offerings such as The Ghan and The Indian Pacific.
Sinclair said Cruiseco is looking at a series of small group touring experiences to complement a range of cruises in Europe for 2021, with potential for some self-drive holiday combinations in western Canada.
The consortium is also planning another Mekong charter program in 2021 in partnership with Lotus Cruises on the Mekong Navigator and the new Mekong Jewel.
The podcast also features an interview with outgoing Silversea MD Adam Armstrong, while CLIA’s Peter Kollar also appears speaking about agent training.
To listen CLICK HERE.