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CLIA UK & Ireland
Passionate about cruising
Passionate about cruising


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Scenic Announces Worlds First Discovery Yacht

Last night Scenic announced the launch of Scenic Eclipse, the worlds first Discovery Yacht.  Three years in the planning the launch of Scenic Ocean Cruising marks a new direction for the travel operator in its 30th anniversary year.

Scenic Eclipse will launch on 31 August 2018, sailing from Istanbul to venice – then onwards to the Americas, Antarctica, Europe, the Med, Arctic and Norwegian Fjords.

The mega yacht will also feature two onboard helicopters and a seven seat submarine.

More details at
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From the CLIA UK & Ireland team, cruise lines and Executive Committee - warm wishes for Christmas and the New Year! Merry Christmas!
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Here is the CLIA UK & Ireland Executive Committee reflecting on a fantastic 2015 for cruise - what a year!
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We have been busy updating our Cruise Factsheets - those handy guides to answer your most frequently asked questions! Find them online at and get ready for WAVE by downloading them, printing them or emailing them!  Find these and a whole host of cruise resources and learning.
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Registration for the CLIA Cruise Conference in May closes this week - with only a limited number of spaces now available.  Book online at - join us and join the #cruiserevolution  #10years
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Winners Announced at Annual Dinner 

Cruise agents who have shown innovation, expertise and have contributed to the success of cruising were honoured at the CLIA UK & Ireland Cruise Excellence Awards 2015 on board Cruise & Maritime’s Magellan in Tilbury last night (Thursday 10 December).

The awards recognise those who have demonstrated exceptional levels of knowledge, leadership and inspiration.  

The Rising Star award was presented to FlexiCruise which demonstrated continued growth through product development and great customer engagement. 

The Innovation in Cruise award was presented to Jetline Cruise which has shown innovative packaging while moving to a more engaging cruise proposition for customers.  

The Online Travel Agency of the Year award was presented for the fourth year running to IGLU Cruise and reflected the company’s continued evolution of the online offering and customer experience. IGLU Cruise fully utilises all aspects of ecommerce while increasingly introducing tailor-made products. 

High Street Travel Agency of the Year went, for the second year running, to Trailfinders. The company demonstrated a focus on training and continued growth in cruise holidays while ensuring an exceptional customer experience.  

Travel Agent Business of the Year was awarded to World Travel Holdings (Cruise 118) which demonstrated a strong investment in training, an enthusiasm for personal development and for supporting CLIA events. This investment has been rewarded in positive customer engagement.   

CLIA has introduced two new awards for 2015 – the Cruise Expert of the Year award was presented to Sarah Bolton from Travel Counsellors.   Sarah demonstrated a positive attitude in going above and beyond expectations and showing a desire to continually increase her cruise knowledge.  

The Cruise Advocate Award was presented to Alison Earnshaw from World Travel Holdings (Cruise 118) for her drive, commitment, dedication and professional development. 

The CLIA UK & Ireland Award for Outstanding Contribution to the UK & Ireland Cruise Community was presented to David Dingle, Kathryn Beadle and Trevor Dupont for their significant contribution to the success of UK cruising.  Kathryn and Trevor have committed themselves to working tirelessly with the travel trade, encouraging greater engagement to the benefit of the industry. David received the award for his exceptional contribution to the cruise industry over more than 30 years. He is a tireless campaigner and his knowledge of cruise is second to none. He has proved to be a driving force in raising the profile of cruising now making it a mainstream holiday choice.  All three recipients have shown themselves as true ambassadors for cruising.  

CLIA UK & Ireland director Andy Harmer said: ‘I’m delighted we have been able to recognise some truly outstanding people and companies who have gone over and above expectations in promoting and selling cruise holidays.’  
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As part of ongoing enhancements to their Executive Partner Membership Program, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) is offering the Summit At Sea, a unique new networking and educational opportunity. The event, which will be hosted onboard MSC’s Preziosa, January 8-11, 2016, is exclusively offered to CLIA’s Executive Partner and Cruise Line Members.

The inaugural Summit at Sea will visit four ports of call in the western Mediterranean over three nights and create a new platform to engage with industry colleagues and 20 cruise line executives. Executive attendance includes All Leisure Group, Carnival Corp. & Plc, Disney Cruise Line, MSC Cruises, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd and Silversea Cruises.

"The Summit at Sea is a great opportunity for industry leaders to immerse themselves in the cruise community," said Pierfrancesco Vago, Chairman of CLIA and Executive Chairman, MSC Cruises. The MSC Preziosa offers an ideal environment for the event and we are excited to host this innovative event."
In addition, The Summit will offer educational content covering port development and operations, destination development and itinerary planning, environment, safety and security, port facility inspections, and shore excursions among others.

"The Summit at Sea is just one example of the ever-expanding CLIA events offered to our community" said Cindy D'Aoust, acting CEO, CLIA. "The Summit reinforces the unique benefits that CLIA membership provides, and we will continue to create opportunities like this to experience the industry first-hand and engage with partners."
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State of the Cruise Industry Outlook:
Continued Evolution of Cruise Travel Drives Industry Growth
Cruise Lines International Association Releases 2016 Cruise Industry Outlook & Trends

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) has today released the 2016 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook, revealing global cruise travel is continuing to grow and evolve at a record pace. 

The industry shows no signs of slowing down, with nearly 24 million passengers expected to take a cruise  in 2016, a dramatic increase from 15 million just 10 years prior (2006), or even 1.4 million when CLIA began tracking passengers in 1980.

CLIA also revealed Member cruise lines are scheduled to launch 27 new ocean, river and specialty ships in 2016, representing a total investment of more than $6.5 billion in new ocean vessels alone.

“In an effort to make cruises the best overall holiday experience available, the industry is continuing to evolve to ensure there truly is a cruise for every travel style and budget.” said Cindy D’Aoust, CLIA’s Acting CEO.  “By creating unique ships, new experiences and access to destinations around the world, the evolution, appeal and value of cruise travel continues to drive the overall growth of the industry.” 

Cruising also generates a substantial positive economic impact globally. In 2014, cruise industry expenditures generated $119.9 billion in total output worldwide, supporting 939,232 full-time equivalent employees who earned $39.3 billion in income.

Here are the ‘Lucky 13 Cruise Industry Trends’ showcasing how the cruise industry has transformed to meet the styles and preferences of today’s traveller:

1. Rise of the River Cruise – river cruises are growing in popularity, introducing the value and unique travel experience to new cruise travellers. CLIA cruise line members currently operate 170 river cruise ships, with 18 new river cruise ships on order for 2016 - an increase of more than 10 per cent. 

2. More Ships, More Options – in 2015, there are a total of 471 cruise ships* in operation with an additional 27 new ocean, river and specialty ships scheduled to launch in 2016.

3. On the Map – five years ago, cruise travel was almost unheard of in Asia. Today, the region is the fastest growing in the cruise industry. Between 2012 and 2014, passenger volume grew from 775,000 to nearly 1.4 million passengers, a 34 per cent compound annual growth rate. 

4. G’Day for a Cruise – while Asia continues to grow rapidly, Australia also continues to experience record growth. In fact, Australia’s cruise industry surpassed a major milestone in 2014, exceeding more than one million passengers in a calendar year. In ten years, Australia’s cruise passengers have grown more than six-fold, from a base of 158,000 in 2004.

5. Cruise Specialists – the cruise industry continues to leverage the expertise of cruise specialist travel agents to help guide travel decisions. Today, there are more than 30,000 CLIA-member travel agents globally compared to 12,000 travel agents in 2010.

6. Connectivity and Cruising – the cruise industry has made consumers’ desire to stay connected while traveling a priority. Most of today’s cruises offer a myriad of Wi-Fi, onboard texting and data options.

7. A Love for Luxe – the desire for luxury travel continues to rise. Specialty cruise lines are responding with a wealth of options including yachting experiences, concierge services, exclusive tours, gourmet dining and personal butler service.

8. Brands at Sea – cruise lines are leveraging the cross-promotional appeal of brands to appeal to new cruise travellers. From family-friendly household names like LEGO and Dr. Seuss, to upscale luxury brands like Hermes and Veuve Clicquot champagne, and even dining options like Johnny Rockets and Margaritaville, brands are setting sail on cruise lines. 

9. Ships Are the Destination – while cruise ships were once considered a mode of transportation to get to a desired destination, today, for many, a cruise ship offers the experience of a destination. Today’s latest ships offer unprecedented onboard experiences and amenities for travellers, from Broadway productions and designer shops to zip lining and bumper cars. 

10. Stay the Night – many cruise lines are offering overnight stays at designated ports of call to give cruise passengers an opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the experiences available at the destination. 

11. Grand(parent) Travel Experiences – intergenerational cruising has become a popular selection for family reunions or the family holiday of a lifetime.  With cruise amenities designed to satisfy every age from toddler to seniors, cruises provide the togetherness (and the independence) that makes intergenerational family travel a success. 

12. Cruise Voluntourism – more “voluntourism” cruises are available in 2016 with several ships including excursions to help areas of need around the world.  These service-oriented cruises offer a wonderful opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the communities cruise ships visit, and a rare experience to embrace and impact the local culture.

13. Culturally Customised – cruise lines are continuing to customise cruise ships based upon passenger cultures. From shopping and dining preferences, vessels are being outfitted to serve guests as well as pay homage to their ports of call. 
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Dedicated unique resources to help grow French cruise sales

CLIA is today launching its award winning cruise learning programme into the French market. For the first time, travel agents in France who become CLIA members will have access to ‘Cruise Experts’ which combines online training and dedicated unique resources in one place while also offering agents the opportunity to work towards industry recognised accreditation.

The programme will bring together France’s cruise community with the aim of growing the number of people taking a cruise holiday. The number of French passengers taking a cruise in 2014 rose by nearly 14 per cent to 593,000.

To support the online portal, CLIA will also launch a number of French travel agent focussed events in 2016 to bring together travel agents, cruise line executives and industry partners to further inform travel agencies in all aspects of cruising.

The Cruise Experts online platform is organised into three distinct areas. The Learning Academy provides almost 90 cruise and cruise sales training modules together with a resource centre containing more in-depth reports and statistics. The Cruise Tool Box features resources to assist agents during the sales process including the unique digital brochure rack; specially created CLIA factsheets; a fully updated cruise search engine and CLIA Destination Guides. The third area is CLIA Cruise Daily which features the latest cruise news and special guest columns, and a centralised calendar of cruise industry events open to travel agents.

CLIA director, Andy Harmer said, “The launch of Cruise Experts in France demonstrates CLIA’s commitment and its cruise line members in growing cruise sales. CLIA UK & Ireland has made a significant investment in Cruise Experts with almost 6,800 travel agents active on the UK website over the past 12 months, so I’m delighted we are sharing these assets with our European colleagues.”
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CLIA has unveiled plans for a dedicated River Cruise Club to delegates attending this year’s record sell out CLIA River Cruise Convention in Amsterdam.   

Against a backdrop of rising sales of river cruise holidays, more than 270 people registered for the two day event including 179 travel agents who were able to visit ships from A Rosa, Amadeus, CroisiEurope, Scenic, Tauck and Uniworld.

The MyCLIA River Cruise Club is an online resource where members can increase their knowledge on all aspects of river cruise holidays including sector specific updates; river focused Webinars; fact sheets; information on new ships and fleet updates; competitions and exclusive offers from CLIA river cruise members.

Guest speakers at the River Cruise Convention included Steve Spivak, Vice president Global Sales for Tauck, Helen Robert, Head of Consumer & Retail for GfK and Lynn Narraway, Managing Director for Seabourn and Holland America Line and also chair of CLIA UK & Ireland.  

“I’m delighted our fourth River Cruise Convention has proved to be the most popular yet,” said Andy Harmer, CLIA director. “This event provides a unique opportunity for agents to touch and feel a mix of river ships whilst also hearing from experts on the latest developments in the sector.  I’m also pleased to announce the launch of the MyCLIA River Cruise Club which I believe agents will find invaluable as they continue to grow their sales of river cruise holidays.”
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