Newmarket Holidays will dedicate its 2019 river cruise programme solely to A-Rosa after signing a partnership with the German river cruise line.

The operator will replace its existing portfolio with all six of A-Rosa’s ships, which offer sailings on five European rivers: the Rhine, Danube, Rhône, Saône and Seine.

More than 4,000 agencies have been sent a 92-page standalone brochure, featuring 64 departures across 16 itineraries, as the programme went on sale April 11 (today).

A ‘How to Sell’ guide is being distributed to agents, with in‑store and online training available.

Agents who complete the courses will qualify for 15% off their own Newmarket holiday.

To mark the launch, Newmarket and A-Rosa are offering agents £35 for each booking made before May 31, along with entry into a prize draw to win an A-Rosa sailing for two.

David Sharman, Newmarket Holidays’ commercial director, said: “We were looking for a partner that could provide a scale of product and a clear strategic growth plan for the future.

“With A-Rosa, we have just that and Newmarket will be able to offer agents and their customers the next level in vessel class.

“This will enable us to appeal to a wider river cruise audience than has previously been possible, and the depth and scale of our offering will provide more choice than ever before.”

Lucia Rowe, A-Rosa’s head of sales for the UK and Ireland, said: “This is the first time any operator has dedicated their entire river programme to our products.”

An eight-day Classic Rhine Cruise to Switzerland starts at £1,459, including six ports of call through the Rhine Gorge and guided walking tours in Mainz and Koblenz.

Fam trip and ship visit dates are expected to be released in the near future.