News

Cruise Club 2008: Six travel agents in search of cruise sales

Travel Weekly Cruise Club sponsored by Complete Cruise SolutionTravel Weekly’s Cruise Club follows six travel agents who have set their sights set on boosting cruise holiday sales.


As well as a one year’s free membership of the Association of Cruise Experts, Travel Weekly cruise club agents will participate in educational trips and training.


Provided by ACE and various cruiselines, the activities are designed to deepen the members’ industry knowledge and help increase their cruise sales.


Latest from the Cruise Club







Quick updates


Some of our members are posting regular updates on their cruise activity using Twitter. Find out what they’re up to below…








Tracy McFall





    Adele Parry

    Adele Parry


    Director, TR4 Travel, Flintshire, Cheshire



    • Cruise sales (% of overall business): 30%
    • Number of staff: Three
    • Type of business: High-street travel agency
    • Cruise sales target increase for 2008: 50%

    Adele has been in the industry for 23 years, and began focusing on cruise after she opened her own agency in June 2007. She now believes it will become a key part of her enterprise.


    Like many agents keen to increase their share of the cruise market, Adele is aware of the value of getting as much help from as many sources as possible.


    “I find the most challenging aspects are the growth in the market and keeping up to speed with new ships and itineraries in order to recommend the right ships to clients,” she said.

    David Sixsmith

    David Sixsmith


    Travel consultant, Personal Travel Advisor, Winstanley, Wigan



    • Cruise sales (% of overall business): 5%
    • Number of staff: Homeworker
    • Type of business: See above
    • Cruise sales target increase for 2008: 30%

    David Sixsmith has been in the industry for about 30 years and started in a high-street agency. “I went on to work for Future Travel and have been there since the homeworking division started 11 years ago,” he said.


    He has sold cruise but not in any volume. “It has been just one or two a year to regular customers, so I’ve never had the chance to specialise, although I’ve often thought about it.”


    Now is certainly the time to do so. “With cruise an expanding market, I know the time has come to get into it,” he said.

    Martin Hay

    Martin Hay


    Homeworker, GoCruise, Ribble Valley, Blackburn, Lancashire



    • Cruise sales (% of overall business): 100%
    • Number of staff: Homeworker
    • Type of business: Franchise
    • Cruise sales target increase for 2008: 400% by the year-end

    Less than a year ago Martin Hay jumped ship after 20 years in senior roles in banking and insurance. Now he operates under the Fred Olsen Travel GoCruise banner.


    He’s not short of personal cruise experience having been on 16 cruises, on 15 ships with nine cruiselines in the past 10 years.


    “I get a buzz exploring a new client’s requests and sourcing or creating a bespoke solution that satisfies their needs.”

    Tracy McFall

    Tracy McFall


    Business proprietor, franchise for Accessible Travel and Leisure, Bristol South



    • Cruise sales (% of overall business): 0%
    • Number of staff: Homeworker
    • Type of business: Franchise
    • Cruise sales target increase for 2008: As much as possible

    Tracy McFall received her training only last November from Accessible Travel and Leisure after buying its Bristol South franchise. The company specialises in travel for customers with disabilities – something Tracy knows all about, being disabled herself.


    “I’ve booked holidays for years for myself, my family and friends as travel agents did not have the information I needed regarding special requirements – such as accommodation – for a disabled person,” Tracy said.


    “I am attracted to cruises because most are accessible not only those with mobility problems, but those with visual and hearing impairments.” 

    Holly Warner

    Holly Warner


    Partner, Holly-days Travel Shop, Folkestone, Kent



    • Cruise sales (% of overall business): 20%
    • Number of staff: Three
    • Type of business: High street retail shop
    • Cruise sales target for 2008: 15%-20%

    Holly Warner has been studying and working in the travel industry for four years and selling cruises for two. She became partner of Holly-days Travel Shop last November.


    The biggest challenges for Holly are: “Competition in the market, keeping up-to-date with offers and deals, advertising service rather than price.”


    Holly has been on two cruises, but wants to go on more. “I love everything about cruising, especially waking up in a new destination. You get to see so much of the world without having to unpack and pack your suitcase,” she said. 

    Sandra Lines

    Sandra Lines


    Director, Knowle Travel, Solihull



    • Cruise sales (% of overall business): 50%
    • Number of staff: Six
    • Type of business: High- street retail
    • Cruise sales target increase for 2008: As much as possible

    Sandra became a director of Knowle Travel 24 years ago. Operating with six staff from one outlet three miles from Solihull, the agency is part of Midconsort.


    Sandra believes there will always be people who want to book through an agent – particularly at the top end of the market.


    “The cruise experience can be a overwhelming for first-timers, which makes an agent’s knowledge more important. “When you know the ships and the customers and get to know what they are like, you can match the two,” she said.



    Share article

    View Comments

    Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

    The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.