Seabourn sets course for 2012 upturn

Seabourn is expecting to be able to increase its average selling price in 2012 on the back of having a bigger sales team, thanks to the merger of the Seabourn and Holland America Line teams.

Seabourn senior vice president John Delaney said: “The stronger our distribution network, the greater our ability to get pricing of our cruises back to where we believe it deserves to be.”

He said prices had been a little soft in 2011 due to the sudden and massive increase in capacity and the tough trading conditions.

“Last year, we had to fill three brand new ships and there were times when we weren’t able to hit the pricing levels that we think we deserve, but the more sales people we have telling new agents about Seabourn, the more chance we have of getting more customers on board and getting our prices up – which is good for the agent.”

Lynn Narraway, recently appointed uk director for Seabourn and HAL, added: “We believe every agent has at least one Seabourn client.” She said the UK has finished 2011 58% up on 2010, and said she’d like to see another 28% growth in 2012.

Narraway said getting agents to actually see and experiences the ships last year had really helped. “We want to get more ships to the UK. We need more ships calling here and I definitely think there’s a market to have a ship based in the UK.”

Delaney claimed Seabourn ships now call at 400 ports in 100 countries, and revealed that the Sojourn would be moved to the Amazon in the autumn.

He also revealed that Seabourn would shortly be launching a revamp of is customer loyalty programme with repeat passengers getting rewarded witht Tiffany jewellery, starting at much lower milestones.

Seabourn will also launch an online training programme for agents in the New Year, similar to the HAL Academy, with six different modules to compete and certificates and financial bonuses to be earned with every module passed.

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