Regent expecting growth
THE debut of Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ new Splendor this week has lifted the cruise line’s capacity by over 25%, with the company’s Australasian sales forecast to grow significantly more than that over the next 12 months.
Senior VP Steve Odell told TD the introduction of the new all-suite, all-balcony vessel had already produced the company’s biggest booking day ever, with reservations interestingly spread right across the five-ship fleet.
That’s despite Regent being unashamedly the most expensive cruise product in the market, Odell said, highlighting the key role travel advisors play in communicating the value of the product to clients.
“We may be the dearest, but we are also the most inclusive,” he said, with Regent fares including all specialty dining, unlimited shore excursions, wi-fi, premium beverages, gratuities and more.
He said being value- rather than price-driven meant agents can earn commission on the whole cost of the cruise, while clients don’t have an expensive surprise in terms of their bar or excursion bill when they disembark.
Australia and NZ continue to be key markets for Regent, with very limited availability left for 2020 sailings and the focus on sales shifting to 2021/22, Odell said.
Europe is the main destination for Australian Regent clientele, and while there is some interest in longer local deployments, these appeal more to cruisers from overseas rather than the Australian fly-cruise market.