Less than two weeks after the launch of its Carnival Conversations travel agent outreach program, Carnival Cruise Lines has agreed to implement improvements to its pricing fare structure as a result of travel agent feedback. The line is currently working on creating a simplified fare structure that will make booking with Carnival easier for travel agents. Carnival expects this new structure to be completed in fall 2013.
“We have received a tremendous amount of travel agent feedback indicating that our current fare and promotion structure is far too complicated and needs to change in order for travel agents to more easily book with us,” said Lynn Torrent, Carnival’s executive vice president of sales and guest services. “Travel agents are telling us that Carnival used to be the easiest cruise line to book with and now we’re the most difficult. Simply put, we want to be easy to book with again.”
“Carnival’s commitment to travel agents is real and that’s why we’re talking closely with them as well as looking at the competition to better understand what works and what doesn’t right now,” said Brenda Yester, Carnival’s senior vice president of revenue management. “My team is busy working on a simplified pricing structure and we look forward to sharing this in the next few months. In the meantime, we will continue to look at feedback from travel agents as we work on this very important effort.”
Carnival launched its new travel agent outreach program, Carnival Conversations, earlier this month. It is designed to increase dialogue and strengthen ties with travel agents through in-person events such as road shows led by the line’s senior sales executives, in-agency seminars, seminars at sea, trade shows and conferences.
During these events, Carnival's sales team will listen to travel agents and provide corresponding solutions and feedback. In addition, as an added element to the in-person events, Carnival is featuring a dedicated Carnival Conversations section on GoCCL.com, the company’s travel agent internet portal, complete with short daily surveys comprised of open-ended questions. Carnival is sharing timely responses to this feedback, letting agents know what they can implement and what will need further review. There will also be a more detailed quarterly survey. Travel agents may also find Carnival’s expanded road show and webinar schedule on the site.