The cruise sector is ripe for exploitation by dynamic packaging firms – although cruise companies are nervous about agents repackaging their product.
Agents are increasingly finding that by repackaging cruise product they can make more money than just competing in the heavily discounted pre-packaged market. More and more cruiselines are now offering cruise-only fares.
Norwegian Cruise Line general manager Francis Riley said there was huge scope for higher-value holidays to be sold on the web and NCL was working on technology to allow it to distribute through new online players.
But he warned agents should focus on finding new business. “Consumers need to be educated and websites need to be informative in terms of what is being booked. If agents take our package and unbundle it by booking cruise only, flights and hotels to make it cheaper they are potentially doing their customers a disservice. We pay commission on the full package and all the risk is with us as provider.”
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