Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Travel Agents Training

Time to learn about selling cruises
June 2019 5358

Cruise  experts and bookers earn a higher commission than those dealing with airlines and hotels and for this reason alone, it is high time to dive into the world of cruising. 

All major cruise lines provide ample education opportunities on their websites to train you into becoming experts in selling cruises – be it for leisure, meetings and incentives or weddings and special occasions.

In recent news, Carnival Cruise Line announced that it will transition from its old travel agent training programme, Carnival Passport, to a new version to be called Learn and Earn. As part of this transition, agents going through its training certification programme no longer need to make four bookings in order to graduate.

Carnival told Travel Weekly the new programme is video-based and puts travel advisors on an 80 per cent faster path to graduation.

Featuring Gold, Platinum and Diamond levels, Learn and Earn lets agents better support their clients while earning rewards and perks for themselves. 

Each month, Carnival will award five seven-day Caribbean cruises for graduates who submit a brief summary about how their Learn and Earn experience helped them develop their business. Entries will be judged by Carnival's sales leadership team, and the top five entries will win a balcony stateroom on the departure date of their choice.

The OneSource Academy online programme is a great stop to learn more about Princess and Cunard. It offers dozens of classes covering both Princess and Cunard through the OneSource Travel Agent Center portal. The more courses agents complete, the better the academy rewards. Agents move up through four tiers of the academy. Agents who reach the highest level in the OneSource Academy online training programme, Commodore, earn a free graduation cruise.

Two years ago, Royal Caribbean International launched a new online travel agent training programme called Royal Caribbean University (RCU). The comprehensive platform offers professionals a highly visual, interactive and mobile-friendly approach to online learning, where they can reinforce their knowledge and success in selling Royal Caribbean cruises.

The new educational resource continues the cruise company’s promise to deliver the most reliable and up-to-date information about itineraries, features, services and tools, doing so in a completely different way than it’s been done before. From bold and responsive design to concise, video-based training modules, RCU was created with the on-the-go pace of the travel professional in mind.

Norwegian Cruise Line University (NCLU) was relaunched two years ago and now features four levels of achievement: Associate, Bachelor's, Master's and Ph.D. The programme is mobile and tablet-friendly and designed to increase agent confidence and help agents close sales. Each course has downloadable reference guides and fast fact selling points and connects Norwegian and its students via a private community on Facebook, NCLU Student Union. All NCLU students with a degree receive reduced rates plus an opportunity to earn a free seven-day cruise with Ph.D. status.

Celebrity Cruises' Five Star Academy provides agents with online training to learn about all Celebrity Cruises has to offer. Agents earn a star for each level they complete (there are five in total) and move on to the next level. Once they complete all five levels and are officially a five-star agent, they receive Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) certification credits and the chance to be invited to Seminars at Sea, Celebrity events, inaugurals and more.

CLIA's professional development and training programmes leverage a wealth of expert knowledge and partnerships to deliver valuable education to travel agents and other industry professionals.

CLIA Certifications cover everyone from students who want to learn about selling cruises, to new travel agents who can benefit from Accredited Cruise Counsellor, Master Cruise Counsellor and Elite Cruise Counsellor (ECC) and even cruise experts who want to specialise in a specific field such as meetings and events at sea or accessible travel, among others.

Last year, CLIA added the Travel Agency Executive (TAE), for travel agency professionals who are part of the industry but are not full-time selling travel agents with a CLIA Affiliated Agency.

Enrollment in these certifications is exclusive to current CLIA Individual Agent Members (IAMs) and CLIA Travel Agency Members (for the TAE). CLIA’s Career Seascape provides a variety of options for completing your certification requirements through live instructor-led training, online courses, and webinars.

CLIA is holding an inaugural Seminar at Sea aboard the MSC Meraviglia sailing to the Bahamas this year from November 17 to 21. The event includes CLIA’s industry-leading professional development, including five new seminars, paired with an opportunity to sail on the MSC Meraviglia and explore the new Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve.  


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