No NCFs part of Cruise and Maritime Voyages' U.S. push

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Cruise and Maritime Voyages, the U.K.-based operator of the Marco Polo and the Ocean Countess, is hoping to get the attention of U.S. agents with a "no NCF" policy, meaning it will pay full commission on all taxes, fees and port charges.

Noncommissionable fees, or NCFs, are a frustration to cruise retailers because cruise lines typically subtract those costs from published fares, reducing the commissionable portion.

Cruise and Maritime Voyages, which last week officially opened its North American sales office in Fort Lauderdale, operates British Isles, Northern Europe and Scandinavia itineraries. All departures on the two 800-passenger ships are from U.K. ports.

"Our opening of this key office in South Florida … plus our development of agent tools and resources, an attractive commission program and our recently appointed travel industry sales team, demonstrates our commitment to the travel agent community," said Alexios Tsokos, vice president of sales and marketing.

The line pays commissions of up to 15%.

Tsokos in an earlier interview predicted that once the Florida office opened, U.S.-sourced passengers would reach 20%. The lion's share of its passengers hail from the U.K.

Cruise and Maritime Voyages' policy mirrors those of Regent Seven Seas Cruises, which dropped NCFs in 2010, and Silversea Cruises, which eliminated NCFs in June.

Regent also pays commission on shore excursions, while Silversea pays commission on air booked through the line.

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