An independent travel agency has created a loyalty scheme to reward existing cruise customers and attract new ones.

Sharon Fleming, director and owner of Thompson Travel International in Portadown, Northern Ireland, will launch The Cruise Counter on Monday.

Customers will earn points for each night spent at sea on all cruises sold by the agency. Points will be collected in a passport-style document noting all the nights travelled. Points will be added for bookings made from February 1.

Rewards range from free airport parking and discounted staterooms to pre and post-cruise stays or a free cruise, which will be paid for by the fully bonded agency.

A website will include information about the scheme as well as cruise deals, competitions and user‑generated content such as videos and photos from clients’ cruises.

Fleming hopes the website ( will help drive bookings beyond the agency’s Northern Ireland base and she has recruited a member of staff to manage and grow the scheme.

“We want to take our cruise business to the next level,” she said.

“We want to reach a further geographical customer base and massively increase our sales, while giving the customer extra perks to attract them to book with us – so, the Cruise Counter was born.”

Royal Caribbean, MSC Cruises, Silversea and Celebrity Cruises have backed the initiative and more lines are due to follow.

Fleming added: “Our cruise customers are some of the most loyal. We want to also reward them for coming back to us over and over again all these years.”

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