The scheme aims to assist local travel agencies affected by the COVID-19 Crisis in their rebuilding efforts.
Johannesburg 10th June 2020.
Cruise Vacations today announced that it will open up a Travel Agency Nomination Scheme with the aim of offering peace of mind to clients and thereby encouraging them to book through their local Travel Agency.
Gaynor Galbraith Neill, General Manager of Cruise Vacations explains. “With the industry having faced a crisis the likes of which we have never seen before, there are many casualties in the retail travel trade. Many of these agents are the ones who have loyally supported our products for the 25 years that we have represented them locally, referring their clients and then managing all aspects and ancillary arrangements on their behalf. Particularly with luxury products they have ensured that the clients they introduce to our cruise lines have received the quality A-Z service they expect. Unfortunately, though many of those agencies are currently non-operational and facing an uncertain future. We wanted to come up with a scheme that would firstly give clients peace of mind to book locally while at the same time assisting those agencies to get back on their feet once the crisis abates”.
The formula is very simple really, agencies make money by earning commission on bookings, this is no secret and one which clients, who truly value the services of a Travel Agent understand. Although more and more passengers have become ‘keyboard travel agents’ as online booking facilities have grown, never more than now has the value of using a qualified travel agent been apparent. And, what many do not realise, rarely does it affect or improve the price of the cruise or the promotions that are on offer.
Guests booking one of the cruises in our luxury portfolio have always had flexible and multiple payment options available. In most of these instances payments are made directly by the client to the cruise line either by credit card or by wire transfer. This means the fare is held or protected if you like, by the cruise line and commissions are paid to travel agents in the month of travel, which has always been the case with our products.
This nomination scheme allows the client to book with ourselves as the official local General Sales Agents, with payment via ourselves going directly to the cruise line. This can be done as normal with their travel agent or cruise specialist agency of choice if they are currently operational, or, directly through Cruise Vacations but nominating their agency of choice to handle the booking once their services resume. The agent can then record that booking as a future sale, payment being in the month of travel and start re-building their books. By booking in this manner, even though for outbound travel, it supports local South African agencies and businesses.
As we start to see the World and destinations slowly but surely opening up and some semblance of normality returning, the desire for clients to plan future travel is becoming apparent. In recent weeks we have been starting to handle more and more future bookings and enquiries and this of course is hugely encouraging but also comes as a welcome relief after some 18 weeks of Crisis Management. As clients start to resume their travel planning, we wanted to have a facility in place immediately that encourages those clients to book locally but with total peace of mind.
There has never been a better time to book with cruise lines offering some exceptional offers, flexible terms and voyages through until the end of 2022.
Cruise Vacations are the officially appointed General Sales Agents in South Africa for Silversea Cruises, Scenic Cruises, Emerald Waterways and Star Clippers.
Further details, reservations and pricing are available by contacting your regular Travel Agent or Cruise Vacations on 011 5140564 firstname.lastname@example.org or via the website on www.cruise-vacations.co.za