The hotel industry is simple. Incentive buyers know the difference between a Four Seasons, a JW Marriott and a Sheraton. Ask them the difference between Crystal, Azamara and Celebrity and they may not know. In their defense – it is NOT their fault. While you can spend a weekend in any destination and visit half a dozen properties – it takes serious effort to visit even one ship in port. And since ships are mobile, you have to be able to catch one on a moving target. Add in fact that ships have tight security and you need special clearance to just visit!
So where does a cruise broker come in? Cruise brokers are unbiased industry experts who have seen and sailed on all of the ships in the market. They will tell you the difference between river, luxury, sailing, boutique, premium, mass market and mega liner categories. Additionally, they can enlighten you on the features and benefits of the various brands. A cruise broker will walk you through the products that will best suit your program. They help you decide whether to book a block of cabins or charter an entire ship. They are savvy on negotiating rates, terms and amenities that are in YOUR best interest.
A cruise broker helps manage the operations of your program at no extra cost. Meeting planners who work directly with a cruise line can find the process challenging. A reputable cruise broker will guide you as you build your onboard and shore side events – ensuring flawless delivery. They act as the planner’s personal representative and deal with the cruise line on his or her behalf, saving time and aggravation.
A cruise broker offers one-stop-shopping – providing ONE sales contact and one operations expert – regardless of the product. This relationship will ultimately save a busy meeting planner time and money!
Arm yourself with an expert who can help you make the right choices for your incentives. You have nothing to lose – and everything to gain!