Cruise selling tips from ACE’s Andy Harmer

Association of Cruise Experts business development director Andy Harmer offers advice to agents to help them become successful in the cruise sector.

“It is all too common to picture a floating resort when thinking of cruising. The beauty of the cruise industry is its diversity.

“The niche cruise market, with its unusual itineraries and dedication to learning, may be just the thing to tempt a reluctant cruiser.”


Know the product

The first thing to remember when selling any cruise is to know your product offering.

There are many types of niche cruise, ranging from soft adventure through to exploration, and you should be well versed in how active the product requires you to be.

Similarly, the ships range from basic passenger vessels to luxury explorers. Do not assume one size fits all.


Destination, Destination, Destination

When selling a niche cruise, knowing your destination is equally as important as knowing your cruiseline or onboard facilities.

Tempt potential cruisers with the exciting destinations offered by niche cruise brands.

Certain destinations, such as the Galapagos and Antarctica, can only be reached by ship, so take advantage of this.


Learning programmes

With self-improvement holidays becoming the new vogue, emphasise this aspect of the cruise.

Many of the niche cruiselines offer exceptional learning programmes, with onboard specialists to give talks and workshops on the region and its wildlife, making the experience of the destination more memorable.



Highlight the experiential nature of a niche cruise. Many of the itineraries offered are once-in-a-lifetime chances to discover a new part of the world.

From visiting Shackleton’s hut in Antarctica, to getting up close to iguanas and turtles in the Galapagos, a niche cruise will not be forgotten.

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