Cruiselines have reported an increase in sales on ex-UK sailings to the Baltics next year following Carnival Liberty’s decision to pull out next summer.
Norwegian Cruise Line said the company had been flooded with agent enquiries while MSC Cruises and Transocean Tours both reported increased sales as a result of Carnival’s ship dropping its 2009 ex-Dover sailings because of the downturn in the US market.
NCL UK general manager Stephen Park said: “We have a similar itinerary to Carnival out of the same embarkation port. The phones have been pretty hot. We are confident we can help most agents.”
The cruiseline is offering to price-match where possible for customers who had already booked Carnival Liberty itineraries. A 12-night Baltic Capitals UK cruise on Norwegian Jewel operates out of Dover from April 28 until September, calling at Copenhagen, Warnemunde, Tallinn, St Petersburg, Helsinki and Stockholm.
MSC Cruises director of cruising Stephen Moffett said the cruiseline had also enjoyed extra bookings on its ex-Dover Baltic itineraries on MSC Lirica next year. “Sales are ahead well ahead and we are getting more business,” he said.
Transocean Tours said it was also picking up bookings for Marco Polo’s 12 night itineraries out of Tilbury to the Baltic Cities and St Petersburg. Sales manager Michelle Daniels said: “It is clear agents are keen to rebook their clients following Carnival’s rethink on the UK and are contacting us and as a result we are experiencing a mini surge in bookings,” she said.