Cruise.co.uk is to offer customers the option of video calling the agency’s consultants.
The cruise agency, which introduced the tagline ‘The Real Cruise People’ earlier this year, said the move to incorporate video technology was a “natural progression” for the business.
The OTA’s consultants, of which there are more than 100, will offer the video call service to clients from next week.
Since the country was placed into lockdown eight weeks ago, video calling has grown in popularity with businesses hosting meetings and conference calls online and families using digital tools to keep in touch.
Cruise.co.uk’s digital marketing will highlight the introduction of video calling and allow customers to fill in an enquiry form to request a consultation over video.
Tony Andrews, deputy managing director of the agency, said the move reinforced that the business had “customers at heart” and wasn’t “just a faceless call centre”. He said some consultants had reported interest in video calls among their regular customers.
He said: “Introducing video calling is a natural progression for our business. Our customers have strong relationships with their clients, and this takes it to another level. Our team will be on hand to have video-based enquiries and we believe there will be strong demand for this.
“As a nation we’ve become used to video calling over the past eight weeks so there’s no issue around whether clients will understand the technology side of this.
“Our consultants will be able to connect with our customers on a deeper level.”
Andrews said video calling wouldn’t just be in place during the coronavirus crisis, but he believed this would become a key method of enquiring about a holiday.
“If people don’t want to go down to the high street and be in close proximity of people, they have this option of video calling knowledgeable cruise experts, and this service will definitely be something we keep in place for the future.”
Cruise.co.uk is using its own technology to facilitate the video calls, using the company’s existing phone connection.
Andrews said that this ensured the process was secure. He said only the enquiry process would be held over video, with payments being taken off video.
When asked whether video calls would help ensure new-to-cruise customers, Andrews said: “The industry has some obvious hurdles to overcome when it comes to new-to-cruise customers, but having face-to-face calls with a cruise expert who can reassure and offer exceptional service will definitely help those customers overcome any barriers.”
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