Princess Cruises said it will pay 2% bonus commissions on short cruises departing January through April next year, one of a series of changes announced based on travel agent feedback.
The three-, four-, and five-day cruises leave from Los Angeles and Fort Lauderdale. The bonus applies on bookings made Nov. 15 through April 22.
Also, Princess said it is rearranging the order of its call to action in marketing materials to make “call your travel agent” first among the options for travelers rather than last.
And Princess said it has placed its travel agent locator box on the header on every page on its website. It said it is the only cruise line to feature such prominent placement.
On the locator map, agencies are clickable to provide more information. Princess said Commodore Certified agencies are listed first, followed by other agencies authorized to sell Princess.
Also, Princess is restoring a dedicated desk in its reservations center for groups. Starting Nov. 18, agents will be able to call the desk to change group allocations, assign or change group amenities, pose questions regarding the recall process and timing, and submit general group questions on topics such as earning tour conductor credits, onboard revenue needs and private cocktail parties.
Use of Polar Online for groups is still encouraged.
Princess said it will open its West Coast call center earlier on weekdays, at 5 a.m. Pacific time, to accommodate East Coast inquiries.
The cruise line said it has enhanced the combinability of various discount programs, and made enhancements to Polar Online.
It will expand its program in 2014, allowing for agent tours of ships during turnaround, and provide the chance for agents to bring clients in certain cases.
In the Bon Voyage program, travel agents who bring one client paying $39 to tour the ship and have lunch on embarkation day will be able to join them for free.
Also, the $39 will be applied as an onboard credit for the agent to use during follow-up in booking the client’s future cruise.
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