Head of trade sales & partnerships – UK & Ireland, Silversea
HOW LONG HAVE YOU WORKED IN YOUR CURRENT JOB AND WHAT ATTRACTED YOU TO THE ROLE?
A: Since I started my new role at the beginning of June I’ve been incredibly impressed by the company ethos. Silversea is a confident, market-leading brand that is constantly evolving whilst acknowledging its heritage; this makes it an exciting and stimulating place to be.
WHAT DO YOU LIKE BEST ABOUT THE CRUISE INDUSTRY?
A: I’ve always worked in the travel industry, but what I’ve found in my short time in the cruise sector is that it is a very close-knit community. Everyone has the common goal of promoting the benefits of cruising – albeit with different customer propositions. I’m really enjoying being part of such an exciting and fast-growing industry.
HOW IS YOUR COMPANY DIFFERENT TO OTHER CRUISE LINES?
A: Our teams have a passion for the highest standards of cruising excellence, with a sense of pride that stems from being part of a family-owned business. Our guests benefit from an unrivalled list of destinations across seven continents within our Classic and Expedition fleets. We genuinely have something for everyone.
WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB OVER THE NEXT TWELVE MONTHS?
A: I am really excited to help forge even closer links with the trade. Their talent and expertise play a huge role in the success of the Silversea brand, and I am looking forward to meeting as many teams as possible over the next twelve months. I’m also keenly monitoring the progress of our new flagship Silver Muse, which makes her maiden voyage in April next year, raising the bar even higher in terms of Silversea ultra-luxury comfort and style while maintaining the small ship intimacy for which Silversea is renowned.
HOW HAS THE CRUISE MARKET CHANGED IN THE LAST 10 YEARS?
A: Although I am a relative newcomer to the cruise market, I’ve been in the wider travel industry for well over a decade and have watched the cruise sector go from strength to strength. I’ve seen a lot more positive messaging about the benefits of cruising making it through to the travelling public, with fresh thinking about who cruises, where they visit and what they can experience on board.
WHAT IS THE TARGET MARKET OF YOUR COMPANY?
A: One of Silversea’s core strengths is the diversity of its destinations and experiences while maintaining its hallmarks of quality, service and world-class hospitality. Our small luxury ships off er enormous opportunities to suit all tastes, enabling guests to explore over 800 fascinating destinations on an all-inclusive basis.
HOW MUCH PERCENTAGE OF GROWTH ARE YOU TARGETING FROM UK & IRELAND CUSTOMERS EACH YEAR?
A: The UK and Ireland are very important markets for Silversea, and I am delighted that they continue to perform very strongly across both the Classic and Expedition fleet.
HOW DOES THE COMPANY WORK WITH THE TRAVEL TRADE?
A: We have a strong network of regional representatives and trade contacts across the UK and Ireland. This close relationship results in a better understanding of local needs and demands, which in turn allows us to better serve our guests on board. I am regularly on the road meeting with the trade, listening to what teams are saying and feeding this back to my colleagues.
WHY SHOULD AGENTS SELL CRUISE RATHER THAN A LAND HOLIDAY?
A: Cruising represents amazing value for money, particularly for those who like to discover new destinations. The ability to experience diverse ports of call knowing that you have your ultra-luxury Silversea suite to come home to makes exploring new places even more special.
TOP THREE SALES TIPS FOR TRAVEL AGENTS SELLING CRUISE
1 Break down the price to a daily rate – cruising represents really exceptional value when you light what is included, especially on all-inclusive operators like Silversea.
2 Emphasise the varied itineraries. Prospective customers may be surprised to learn that Silversea voyages include Bangladesh, Madagascar and Antarctica.
3 Complete any training courses or other educational initiatives that may be on offer to you. Knowledge of the product will help tailor the right cruise for your customer.