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Tui UK and Ireland hopes to attract new customers following a partnership with eWaterways that will see small ship and river cruises sold through its agencies.

The distribution partnership is due to be confirmed at this week’s Clia UK & Ireland Selling Cruise Conference in Southampton.

The deal will see Tui UK offering a diverse new collection of small ship cruises to customers from companies including Compagnie du Ponant, and river voyages onboard Royal Crown.

Other options include expedition cruises in Antarctica and coastal voyages throughout Europe, Asia and the Caribbean.

The partnership will see boutique motor sailing holidays around Croatia being offered to a new audience.

Tui UK cruise general manager Karen Doyle said:??"As a company we are always looking at new opportunities to take advantage of growing sectors, such as river cruise, and expanding into this type of market will really offer something different and unique for Thomson and First Choice customers.

"Holiday experience is everything and ensuring we vary our programme continually keeps things fresh and exciting for both our retail agents selling our holidays and our customers buying them."

Daniela Wagner, chief executive of eWaterways, said: “We are delighted to announce this partnership as this will provide a number of exceptional small ship cruise products for Tui that fits with its medium and long‑term plans for diversification, as well as adding to our own distribution strategy in terms of positioning eWaterways with key wholesalers and tour operators in the UK.”

eWaterways features a range of small ships, luxury yachts, river boats and barges, with capacity ranging from six t