Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Celebrity to offer high-end cruise tours

Celebrity to offer high-end cruise tours

By Tom Stieghorst
Celebrity Cruises plans to launch regular high-end cruise tours, with the first three set to be offered in 2015.
The product will be known as Celebrity Explorations. Travel agents will earn commission on the land portion at the same rate as their cruise commission, said Dondra Ritzenthaler, Celebrity’s senior vice president of sales and trade support and services.

“We are always trying think of things that our travel partners will like and embrace,” Ritzenthaler said, while at the same time being popular with cruise customers.

A cruise tour that combines a three-night stay and city tour in Sydney with a Celebrity Solstice cruise from Australia will kick off the new venture in January.

In August, Celebrity will begin offering a five-night African safari that will end with a cruise on one of several itineraries from Southampton, England.

Finally, in December, Celebrity will begin offering a river/ocean cruise combination that includes a four-night voyage on the Amazon River and a longer Celebrity Infinity cruise in South America.

Ritzenthaler said there will be other cruise tours developed as time goes by. “The strategy is we’ll continue to give our travel partners and guests Celebrity Explorations on an ongoing basis, so it’s not a one-time deal,” she said.

Celebrity earlier this year promoted a five-night African safari with a Black Sea cruise with departures this fall as part of a pilot program for the new offerings.