Oceania Cruises vows to invest in supporting trade

Oceania Cruises has promised to invest more to support agents, declaring “trade partners are the whole strategy” for increasing sales.

Jason Worth, vice-president of international sales, said the line had seen an uptick in trade bookings from agents who had visited its first Allura-class ship, Vista, which set sail in May.

Worth, who has been in position since August, praised the UK’s performance as the “original international market” for Oceania Cruises. He said the UK would hit the “next level” in 2024, and pledged to do more to ensure the trade continues its legacy of “growth and strength”.

Speaking on a Travel Weekly webcast, Worth said: “We’re seeing a lot of interest and excitement building for things that we want to do next year and it’s all about the trade.

“Our focus is solely on growing that channel. Trade partners are the whole strategy.

“The key is to grow the number of partners as we want more people to see and understand the product.

“We will be increasing our marketing budget for consumer spending and in print and all types of media, but also really working with the trade on what they want to do and how we can help.
We’re also planning on increasing support by growing the team both in the office and on the road.”

Worth’s comments came after a “fantastic sales day” for the line’s second Allura-class ship, Allura, which is due to enter service in June 2025.

Worth said the UK market had a particularly successful debut sales day on September 13, with Mediterranean voyages the most popular itinerary.

He also hailed the line’s decision to make deposits non-refundable, saying the trade had supported the change as it reduced the likelihood of customers cancelling bookings.

“We’re really excited for that first Mediterranean season on Allura,” he said. “We made our deposits non-refundable on September 1 and we’ve seen a lot of praise from the trade for doing that because it’s actually helping them keep the business.”

He added: “Oceania and the trade are helping each other and that’s been very well received.”

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