Carnival UK has claimed its new system for paying travel agents could become a blueprint for the entire travel industry to combat the discount culture.

In his first full, exclusive interview about the changes revealed last week on, David Dingle, Carnival chief executive was quizzed about the new deal for TWnewsmaker.

He described it as the “fairest scheme for travel agents that I think the cruise industry has ever put into the market.”

Most controversially the new commercial terms for 2012 see travel agents’ base commission drop to a 5% flat rate from the current tiered volume-based rate under which agents can earn between 10% and 15%.

But the operator has also opted to end its direct discount and rewarding travel agents via large target-based override payments rewarding volume.

Dingle said this removes the need for agents to rebate commission to compete for business and he expected not just other cruise operators to follow suit but for other sectors of the industry to

He said he believed the sort of discounting seen in cruise was “endemic” across the whole of the travel industry

And he added: “Everybody’s going to realise the good sense of this and many are going to follow us.”