Kudos to Carnival Corp. and its chairman, Micky Arison, for the recent advertisement styled as an open letter of thanks to travel agents.

Having witnessed the growth of Carnival Corp. from its inauspicious beginnings 41 years ago, we know -- as Carnival knows and the entire industry knows -- that a key ingredient in this company's success has been its cultivation of the travel agency sales channel.

As the advertisement plainly states, "You've helped us grow to the point where over half of all North American guests cruise aboard one of our ships."

But it never hurts, and it usually helps, for the boss to put his face out there and say thanks. It's a particularly welcome move for Carnival because Arison has taken some criticism in recent years for staying in the background.

We suspect that many agents appreciate the gesture. It was the right move to make, at the right time.
JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI