Advantage Travel Partnership is to launch a cruise repackaging tool this year in a bid to help its members improve their margin on cruise bookings.

The new tool was announced by group commercial membership director Paula Lacey at the consortium’s Vivolution conference in Cadiz, Spain.

Advantage will connect its cruise and airline partners to create the tool, which can be used by its agent members to create bespoke cruise packages for their customers.

It will start with an ocean cruise offering and be followed by a tool to repackage river and luxury cruise holidays in 2020, which will both be run through in-house tour operator Advantage Holidays.

Lacey said: “Historically we’ve never had the internal technology to repackage cruise. This product can offer some incredibly competitive prices when they are combined with flights.”

More details will be released to members later in the year.

“Watch this space,” added Lacey. “Your bottom line is always front of our mind.”

Advantage will also launch B2C magazines for its members. Navigate and Explorer will be targeted at the cruise and touring sectors and can be overbranded with members’ logos.

Lacey also announced plans for Advantage to carry out a Member Census to help understand and pinpoint members’ requirements, and member profiling to drill down into individual agencies’ needs.

Part of the enhanced offering will be the new Regional Communities programme. Launching in the autumn, the new and revamped initiatives will include monthly regional community conference calls with business development managers and Advantage head office staff. There will also be Facebook Live transmissions.

Another new initiative will be the member preference centre allowing businesses to choose which products they want to use that are most relevant to them.

The Regional Communities programme will also involve the re-introduction of cluster meetings and dinners, plus a new buddy system whereby a new Advantage member will be partnered with an existing member in their region.

“This gets us closer to you, closer to your suppliers and puts you closer to your suppliers,” said Lacey. “One size doesn’t fit all so there will be different requirements in different parts of the country.”