Originally Posted by big green
Where is the official NCL release on this policy change???
Here's an email I received from NCL just a few minutes ago:
Dear Travel Partner,
With our legacy as champion of the travel agency distribution network, today we are announcing an upgraded and more clearly defined rebating policy which encourages travel partners to grow as marketers and not as discounters.
The new policy prohibits rebating in the form of price. Alternatively, travel partners will need to formulate a marketing plan, utilizing value-add opportunities, and submit it to their sales representative for approval. Funds to cover the marketing plan will be deducted from the travel partner's commission.
Here are the new guidelines, effective August 1, 2010:
Travel partners may offer a discretionary value-add, provided...
- It is not cash or cash equivalent
- The value or perceived value does not exceed 10% of the total cruise fare including non-commissionable fares (NCFs)
- The dollar amount or percentage of the value-add is not included in any marketing or advertising with the exception of onboard credit.
Value-add opportunities and marketing plans must be approved by Norwegian Cruise Line in advance of promotion launch. Your partner in structuring a value-add opportunity is your Business Development Manager or Business Development Specialist. If you are not sure who to contact, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
and we'll put you in touch.
We have included with this letter the formal policy statement as well as a list of frequently asked questions. You may have a few additional questions unique to your business model and we encourage you to direct them to your Business Development Manager or Specialist at email@example.com
EVP, Global Sales and Passenger Services
Effective as of August 1, 2010, the following policy must be adhered to when selling,
advertising or marketing and/or promoting Norwegian Cruise Line sailings.
Norwegian Cruise Line requires all credit card payments to be made to Norwegian
Cruise Line at the Gross Price due for all bookings made on or after August 1, 2010
Travel Partners may offer value-adds to passengers at the time of booking.
Travel Partners must adhere to the following guidelines when offering a value-add to the
a. Obtain prior written approval from the Norwegian Cruise Line Sales Department
regarding the terms of the value-add
b. the value-add cannot be a cash or cash equivalent (except OBC)
c. the value or perceived value of the value-add offer cannot exceed 10% of the
total cruise fare including ncf's
d. the dollar amount or percentage of savings offered as a result of the value-add
offer cannot be included in any marketing or advertisement (only onboard credits
can be listed in any marketing or advertisement).
Travel Partners must contact their sales representative and submit a Sales & Marketing
plan for approval. Following the submission of the Sales and Marketing Plan, the
Norwegian Cruise Line Sales Department will approve one of two options:
A value-add promotion that does not exceed 10% of the total cruise fare including ncf's
and that is not cash or a cash equivalent (except for an onboard credit). The Travel
Partner will be able to select the value-add offer which they would like to include in the
promotion from Norwegian Cruise Line's list of available value-add offers.
Norwegian Cruise Line will offer a menu of acceptable value-adds that can be used for
marketing purposes in conjunction with a "Sale or Promotion" pre-approved by the
Norwegian Cruise Line Sales Department with the following parameters:
a. Booking period will be defined in the Sales & Marketing plan which
requires approval of Norwegian Cruise Line
b. "Sale or Promotion" can be inclusive of all product or specific product
and/or specific meta categories
Once the Norwegian Cruise Line Sales Department approves the "Sale or Promotion",
Norwegian Cruise Line will program the internal systems to support the promotion and
automatically add to all bookings made with in the promotional time under the agreed
upon terms, the value-add offer.
In the instance that any Travel Partner violates any terms of this Policy, such Travel
partner shall be subject to penalties up to and including a stop sell. In addition,
Norwegian Cruise Line may pursue any and all legal remedies available to Norwegian
Cruise Line against such Travel Partner.
Rebate Policy Questions and Answers
Q. All of our marketing is in line with the guidelines but at the time of closing the sale
we would like to offer a discount, is this acceptable?
A. The marketing guidelines apply to the selling of the cruise as well. If you can not
advertise the discount it cannot be offered. The only time the value-add can be
included is when it as been pre-approved by Sales as part of a specific Sales &
Q. Can rates below the approved Norwegian Cruise Line rates and or value-add
dollar amounts be advertised to a private membership base, club membership or
private opt-in email database.
A. This is considered advertising rebated rates. Even in a closed environment, this is
Q. If we are affiliated with a National Account can we advertise a value-add?
A. Your corporate office would have to select the product and the offer along with the
booking window required. The promotion would be set up for all affiliates to book into.
Q. What is an acceptable value-add?
A. Anything from our promotional menu or items from our amenities list or anything
that is pre-approved by Sales.
Q. Can I offer a gift card from a retail store?
A. Cash or cash equivalents can not be offered.
Q. Can I offer category upgrades to my clients as value-adds?
A. Upgrades are not permitted as there is a perceived cash value.
Q. Will Norwegian Cruise Line accept less than the gross due for final payments via
A. All credit card payments will be required to be paid at Gross. We will not accept
payment for less than the Gross Amount due.
Q. Will Norwegian Cruise Line accept less than the Gross Due when making final
payment on a group?
A. Our policy on this has not changed for group bookings due to the TC's and
amenities that are associated with groups.
Q. If an agency has a group with amenity points, can the rates along with the value
add be advertised?
A. Yes and we highly recommend that amenity points be assigned at time group is
blocked to take full advantage of the value-add.
Q. What if I do not want to use any items from the Value-Add menu?
A. With prior approval from Sales you can offer a value-add item that does not exceed
10% of the total cruise fare and is not cash or a cash equivalent.
Q. How do I set up a promotion?
A. Contact your sales representative and have a Sales & Marketing Plan ready for
Q. What about Norwegian Cruise Line coupon booklets? Are they considered a value-add under this program?
A. No. The coupon booklets are a value-add supplied by Norwegian Cruise Line and are not considered a part of this program.