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  #1  
Old July 10th, 2012, 10:50 AM
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mpk218 mpk218 is offline
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Default Hope NCL does'nt follow suit ? yuk

I just saw this and I dont know how new it is but,here it is.
I sure hope NCL does not look at similar ideas.

## NEWSFLASH: New Carnival Policy goes in effect August 1st, 2012

Carnival has just announced that effective 8/1/12, they will not allow travel agents to give ANY cash equivalent value-adds (i.e shipboard credit, pre-paid gratuities, gas cards, airline miles, reduced airfare; free or discounted travel insurance, hotel nights, or shore excursions) and will be limiting any booking incentives to a $ 25 pp non-cash equivalent item (like a tote bag, hat, beach towel, memory book, sunglasses and Carnival gifts delivered onboard (Bon Voyage items)). This new policy applies not only to advertising, but all forms of communication, including in-person, phone or any other means. If any travel agent is caught violating the policy, (whether big, small or even a home based agent belonging to a host agency) their commission can be eliminated and they can be put on a "no book" status.
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  #2  
Old July 10th, 2012, 11:24 AM
chrisc71 chrisc71 is offline
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So Carnival is basically saying they do not want the TA to handle the bookings anymore?
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  #3  
Old July 10th, 2012, 11:37 AM
garycarla garycarla is offline
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Interesting. Over the past few years, most of the cruiselines have not allow TA's to advertise a price any different than what the cruiseline offers. Some have gotten around this fixed price thing by offering OBC, etc. Call it a discount, rebate, kickback, whatever.
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  #4  
Old July 10th, 2012, 11:50 AM
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Sure sounds like Carnival is wanting to get into a real control thing. Wasn't it about 2 months ago all uproar over the way they adjusted their loyalty program and reduced people's levels.

Glad I decided several years ago to never try them.
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  #5  
Old July 10th, 2012, 12:02 PM
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I don't know if there are already threads on this forum regarding this topic, but I figured I would chime in on this. I, for one, am glad about the change, and expect that the rest of the cruise lines will follow suit once they see how Carnival does with it. Many people think it will drive more consumers to book direct, and that is probably true for a certain segment of the population. However, there is ALWAYS going to be a segment of the population that wants to work with a travel agent. This new policy levels out the playing field for many small travel agencies, making it an issue of "quality of service" rather than "how much will I get". If you're going to pay the same price, whether you book direct with the cruise line or through a travel agent, why not go with the personal service of a travel agent.
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  #6  
Old July 10th, 2012, 12:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jakesnana View Post
I don't know if there are already threads on this forum regarding this topic, but I figured I would chime in on this. I, for one, am glad about the change, and expect that the rest of the cruise lines will follow suit once they see how Carnival does with it. Many people think it will drive more consumers to book direct, and that is probably true for a certain segment of the population. However, there is ALWAYS going to be a segment of the population that wants to work with a travel agent. This new policy levels out the playing field for many small travel agencies, making it an issue of "quality of service" rather than "how much will I get". If you're going to pay the same price, whether you book direct with the cruise line or through a travel agent, why not go with the personal service of a travel agent.
Travel agents are dying off due to declining commissions. If they cannot use OBC to get customers people will stop using them. Yes some people will use an agent because they like the service but with less customers an agent will not be able to last.
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  #7  
Old July 10th, 2012, 12:31 PM
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The generation that uses TA's is slowly aging and traveling less & less. Most of the younger travelers tend to prefer booking themselves via internet. It won't be long before T/A's become obsolete. I can even see the cruise lines following the airlines eventually and stopping commissions to T/A's. JMHO
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  #8  
Old July 10th, 2012, 12:59 PM
Eastcstrob Eastcstrob is offline
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If you use any website other then NCL.COM you are booking with a travel agent.

Last edited by Eastcstrob; July 10th, 2012 at 01:00 PM. Reason: misspelling
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  #9  
Old July 10th, 2012, 01:08 PM
thebooler thebooler is offline
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Can't say I disagree with this.

The price you pay shopuld be the same, no matter who you book with.
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  #10  
Old July 10th, 2012, 01:29 PM
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I think this is sad.

I never do and never will use a travel agent. I have control issues and want to deal with everything myself, so if I have to boot anyone in the butt for not doing appropriate reserach I will be booting myself.

However, some people do not have the knowledge, time, energy, experience or just plain do not want to bother with appropriate research and that is where a good travel agent can priceless to some. So I think to totally discourage TAs by not giving them anything that will give them an edge to stay in business is just plain sad.

I understand that some/most/all (whatever it is) will not allow them to openly price cut is fair. But by not allowing them to throw something in the customer's direction to entice business is wrong.

NCL if this is on the table in your corporate office, I truly wish you would reconsider it. If travel agents are a dying breed as some believe they will disappear themselves with no help from the cruiselines.
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  #11  
Old July 10th, 2012, 01:31 PM
snoozycruisee snoozycruisee is offline
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Default Today's Cruise News (Carnival Policy Change)

http://www.cruisecritic.com/news/news.cfm?ID=4899

7th Paragraph down. I find the last quote in that paragraph oddly funny

As far as the next paragraph, I have always selected my Travel Agents based on both Expertise/Service COMBINED WITH the lowest Price/Highest Perks. It looks like CCL is removing part of the equation to make things less confusing ?? How kind of them. LOL.
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  #12  
Old July 10th, 2012, 01:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by che5904 View Post
I think this is sad.

I never do and never will use a travel agent. I have control issues and want to deal with everything myself, so if I have to boot anyone in the butt for not doing appropriate reserach I will be booting myself.

However, some people do not have the knowledge, time, energy, experience or just plain do not want to bother with appropriate research and that is where a good travel agent can priceless to some. So I think to totally discourage TAs by not giving them anything that will give them an edge to stay in business is just plain sad.

I understand that some/most/all (whatever it is) will not allow them to openly price cut is fair. But by not allowing them to throw something in the customer's direction to entice business is wrong.

NCL if this is on the table in your corporate office, I truly wish you would reconsider it. If travel agents are a dying breed as some believe they will disappear themselves with no help from the cruiselines.
I have already sent my emails to NCL with similar sentiments. Who cares if the TA wants to give up a piece of their end to make the deal.
This is how business is done . But sadly I see this going the way of the airlines. No TA's period... shame
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2003 NCL Star
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  #13  
Old July 10th, 2012, 01:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snoozycruisee View Post
http://www.cruisecritic.com/news/news.cfm?ID=4899

7th Paragraph down. I find the last quote in that paragraph oddly funny





As far as the next paragraph, I have always selected my Travel Agents based on both Expertise/Service COMBINED WITH the lowest Price/Highest Perks. It looks like CCL is removing part of the equation to make things less confusing ?? How kind of them. LOL.
Talk about rationalization!
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  #14  
Old July 10th, 2012, 01:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snoozycruisee View Post
http://www.cruisecritic.com/news/news.cfm?ID=4899

7th Paragraph down. I find the last quote in that paragraph oddly funny


Their going to find out just how UN confused the customer is
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2003 NCL Star
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  #15  
Old July 10th, 2012, 02:06 PM
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I am surprised that the cruise lines continue to pay commissions which allow travel agencies to give away perks. Cruise ships are pretty cookie cutter nowadays. Ships used to have different cabin sizes in the same category quite often. An agent would have the time and resources to find their clients the larger cabins. There is also no need to go into an agency to look at brochures anymore when everything is online. Folks like me save the cruise lines millions by always booking direct with the line. A group booking would be the only exception in terms of really needing an agency to be involved.

Last edited by coaster; July 10th, 2012 at 02:15 PM.
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  #16  
Old July 10th, 2012, 02:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coaster View Post
I am surprised that the cruise lines continue to pay commissions which allow travel agencies to give away perks. Cruise ships are pretty cookie cutter nowadays. Ships used to have different cabin sizes in the same category quite often. An agent would have the time and resources to find their clients the larger cabins. There is also no need to go into an agency to look at brochures anymore when everything is online. Folks like me save the cruise lines millions by always booking direct with the line.
It might surprise you then to know that not everyone has the knowledge or access to research and still "need to go into an agency to look at brochures"
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  #17  
Old July 10th, 2012, 02:54 PM
sverigecruiser sverigecruiser is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpk218 View Post
I just saw this and I dont know how new it is but,here it is.
I sure hope NCL does not look at similar ideas.

## NEWSFLASH: New Carnival Policy goes in effect August 1st, 2012

Carnival has just announced that effective 8/1/12, they will not allow travel agents to give ANY cash equivalent value-adds (i.e shipboard credit, pre-paid gratuities, gas cards, airline miles, reduced airfare; free or discounted travel insurance, hotel nights, or shore excursions) and will be limiting any booking incentives to a $ 25 pp non-cash equivalent item (like a tote bag, hat, beach towel, memory book, sunglasses and Carnival gifts delivered onboard (Bon Voyage items)). This new policy applies not only to advertising, but all forms of communication, including in-person, phone or any other means. If any travel agent is caught violating the policy, (whether big, small or even a home based agent belonging to a host agency) their commission can be eliminated and they can be put on a "no book" status.
For me it doesn't matter because a Swedish TA doesn't give me anything anyway. Maybe the prices on things on board will be lower if not lots of people have gigantic OBC's to spend?
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  #18  
Old July 10th, 2012, 02:58 PM
sverigecruiser sverigecruiser is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CapeCodCruiser View Post
The generation that uses TA's is slowly aging and traveling less & less. Most of the younger travelers tend to prefer booking themselves via internet. It won't be long before T/A's become obsolete. I can even see the cruise lines following the airlines eventually and stopping commissions to T/A's. JMHO
I'm getting older and travel more and spend more on each trip! If I only shall book a cruise and it's in Europe, I don't mind booking it myself on ncl.eu but if I shall have airline tickets and hotels in the US I prefer to use a TA. It feels good to have someone to contact in case something goes wrong!
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  #19  
Old July 10th, 2012, 03:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebooler View Post
Can't say I disagree with this.

The price you pay shopuld be the same, no matter who you book with.
Why? Don't use the "fair" word as that is another word for lack of imagination, and is the argument of the weak.
Our country was built on competition in the free enterprise system and I say do what you can to be successful.
Everyone should work his or her best deal. Travel agents or any business should be able to control how they market a product. They can also decide to do what Carnival is apparently doing. NO price changes at all. Worked well for Saturn, huh?

Thank goodness that is only a handful of businesses that market that way. Apple gets away with it but even designer lines have "factory stores" that discount their goods.

I, for one, am glad we have choices!
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  #20  
Old July 10th, 2012, 03:15 PM
DaveNH DaveNH is offline
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Going with a TA was much less for us than booking direct on ncl.com with the same OBC and gift extras that ncl.com was offering.

I believe it was because they got us a group rate. The difference (14.6%) was too much to ignore and paid for a cabana on GSC and half the Aquaventure (or whatever they call it) at Atlantis.

No TA could get us that much of a discount on Carnival which was the main reason we chose NCL.

Last edited by DaveNH; July 10th, 2012 at 03:17 PM.
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