The Travel Network Group is to push cruise sales through a series of initiatives including eight ship visits over the summer.

Members of the consortium’s cruise club will be helped with their product knowledge to help increase their understanding of the cruise industry.

The group will be hosting a number of VIP days in conjunction with MSC Cruises, Holland America Line and Saga Cruises between July and October, inviting members and their staff and customers to also attend ship visits.

A two-day seminar is being held in Southampton on board two Oceania ships with an overnight hotel stay and dinner.

A cruise forum will be staged for agent managers and cruise specialists to meet on board a ship to discuss where the cruise business is heading.

Three further Cruise & Maritime steering group visits will include presentations, lunch and a ship tour in Liverpool, Hull and Bristol.

Personalised videos of agents on ship visits can be used by members as part of their social media and local marketing activities.

Group marketing director, Si Morris-Green, said: “The best way for agents to sell cruises is if they have first-hand experience of the ships and what they have to offer.

“We are delighted to have secured eight VIP ship visits for our cruise club members, with an open invite for them to bring their staff or customers along to experience the ships.

“We expect the take up to be high, with over 100 members attending the various activities.”

He added: “At all of the events we will listen to feedback from members on how we can continue to improve our cruise services and provide further support in this sector.

“We will also have an honest and open discussion on where we believe the industry is heading and how we can, collectively, attract new to cruise customers.

“Cruise continues to be a key sector for us and our members and we know that if we can better educate and equip agents to sell cruise then an increase in sales will follow.”