Expedia charters Carnival Legend for theme sail


Expedia has been making some big boardroom deals lately, particularly with Carnival Cruise Lines and Donald Trumps exclusive magazine, Trump World, to put together a cruise themed on the hit TV show The Apprentice.

Expedia will charter the Carnival Legend in September, a first for the online agency. But according to execs, it wont be the last time it does something different -- the Apprentice cruise is just one of several experiences Expedia is considering.

Its a direction well go in the future, Vice President of Cruise Mark Kammerer told Travel Weekly during an official Apprentice cruise launch in New York. The Internet isnt just about booking the cheapest travel out there.

Dara Khosrowshahi, who will become Expedias new CEO this spring, was also on hand at the launch party to offer his job -- for a day -- to the winner of an Apprentice-style contest that will be held during the cruise. (Three former Apprentice contestants will reprise the Donalds boardroom role and fire the participants during the eight-day cruise).

What will be the new CEOs role that day?

Were going to have a review of the cruise business, Khosrowshahi joked.

Other details remain to be ironed out, such as how many contestants will be involved in the Apprentice show and where the firings will take place. The bridge? Or the lido buffet between meals?

Ommmm ... Speaking of theme cruises, Radisson Seven Seas Cruises was promoting its February 24 yoga cruise as a way for passengers to stretch their minds and bodies, but not their wallets (two-for-one fares start at $2,198).

A New York-based husband-and-wife yoga team will be onboard the ship, the Seven Seas Mariner, to conduct daily yoga programs for beginners and experts, men and women, the old and the young. Theyll also offer classes on meditation and aromatherapy. The cruise is offered out of Fort Lauderdale.

And speaking of deals, tall-ship specialist Star Clippers is offering up to $800 off cruise and air packages on 58 summer sailings of the Star Clipper, the Star Flyer and the Royal Clipper.

The three ships are sailing seven-, 10- and 11-day cruises in the western Mediterranean.

Call (800) 442-0551 for more information.

Theres much excitement surrounding Wave Season, and cruise lines are fanning the flames with several promotions.

Holland America Line is back with its View and Verandah promotion. Norwegian Cruise Lines Sale of all Sails banners were on agency sites this month, and the line is running a daily prize promotion.

Princess Cruises, meanwhile, has a Suitestakes. Agents booking through its Polar Online booking system are registered to win a cruise in a Princess suite.

Some cruise lines are just staying in the spotlight to keep the buzz alive.

Royal Caribbean Internationals senior vice president of sales, Lisa Bauer, talked up the lines new trade-show booth thats appearing at shows in Chicago, New York and Boston.

The booths got a rock wall and virtual reality, Bauer said. Its very on-brand.

To contact reporter Rebecca Tobin, send e-mail to [email protected].


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