Seabourn reports ‘historically high’ booking levels

Seabourn has reported “historically high” booking levels as the UK leads the way for Caribbean sales.

In an interview with Travel Weekly, the line’s president Natalya Leahy hailed the success of the UK market, which is Seabourn’s second largest market overall, but first in the Caribbean.

“The UK market is leading our Caribbean trade sales with more than 50% of our guests coming from the UK,” she said. “We are now developing and crafting deployment around the desires from the UK market as it’s so important to us.”

Leahy encouraged agents to stress the importance of booking early when speaking to their customers, as early bookings are at “record levels”.

The line has released future deployment earlier than ever before, Leahy said, as the booking curve continues to extend as customers seek to book further ahead.

“Overall, we are very happy with our 2023 performance and our 2024 booking curve is at an historical record from people booking early,” Leahy said.

“We are better booked for the year ahead than we were at this time in 2019, in 2018 and in 2017; in fact, higher than anything in recent history, so this is our historical record in terms of bookings.

“We are also at an historical high in terms of early booking deployment. Currently, we are operating 24 months out, but by January, we will be close to 36 months ahead of departure. We have never released deployment so early, but people now want to plan further in advance so we are meeting their demand.”

Vice-president UK & Europe Lynn Narraway urged the trade to be “proactive” when selling during the wave season, and not to rely on customers coming to them asking for a Seabourn booking.

She suggested agents use the next few weeks to study their databases and earmark any customers that are likely to have a special occasion coming up or are interested in multi-generation holidays, which she said have been particularly popular in the wake of the pandemic.

“It all comes back to agents knowing their luxury clients and being aware of any special occasions coming up, such as a birthday or anniversary, where customers might be keen to take a more luxurious holiday, Narraway said.

“My advice to agents is to be prepared and be proactive. Don’t wait around for a customer to come in and ask for a Seabourn cruise – go to the client with ideas and use our wave offers to entice them.”

Leahy added: “Agents need to emphasise the incredible value in an ultra-luxury cruise. Customers pay once and then everything is covered and the trade must educate their clients on that.

“I would stress agents particularly focus on studying the expedition cruise market as it’s a very wide space so it’s worth familiarising yourself and using your knowledge to bring new people into the cruising market.”

Related Articles

60 seconds with... Hebridean Island Cruises' Hannah Cockell

American Queen Voyages blames impact of pandemic for collapse

Wendy Lahmich to step down from Seabourn