A Travel Agent’s Guide to Selling River Cruises
Written by: Amanda Bates on March 27, 2015
This week, we’ve highlighted the advantages of European river cruises and how they differ from ocean cruises. We have also looked at Avalon Waterways’ innovative fleet of ships and the special interest packages they offer.
But what do travel agents need to know about selling river cruises? The tips below will help you inform and sell these remarkable European voyages to clients.
- Focus on the location. If your clients have taken a river cruise before, they’ll know that it’s an ideal way to see Europe. They have plenty of time to explore destinations, enjoy scenic views along the way, and don’t have to stress about catching trains or lugging their bags from city to city.
- Suggest Pre- and Post-Stays. Clients don’t have to head straight to the ship from the airport, or straight back to the airport once the cruise ends. If they’d like to spend more time touring the port where the ship embarks or disembarks, recommend adding on a day or two of hotel stays so they can get a fuller experience.
- Emphasize Inclusiveness. Excursions. Beer and wine with dinner. Airport transfers. With many river cruise lines, all of this is included when your client books. Some will also offer flight discounts or credits towards airfare.
- Know the Various River Cruise Lines. No two river cruise lines are alike; and each one offers a variety of itineraries. Knowing which one will most satisfy your clients needs will ensure your clients return to you for their next trip.
- Target the Right Clients. While river cruises are gradually gaining popularity among younger travelers and families, baby boomers still make up the majority of the market. In general, river cruise travelers are those wanting an enriching experience without a lot of hassle.
- Encourage Clients to Plan Far in Advance. With the limited number of cabins available on river cruise ships, it’s crucial that your clients book as soon as possible. Some lines, like Avalon Waterways, offer discounts if bookings are made by a certain date. Save your client money and ensure they are on the river cruise of their dreams!
If you’d like to learn more about selling these exciting trips, get our free information packet by filling out the form on the right or by calling 1-888-611-1220.
Thank you for following along with us for #RiverCruiseWeek! We enjoyed discovering all the possibilities river cruises have to offer travelers and travel agents. We hope you have too!