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22 Jun 2017

BY April Hutchinson


Kirker expands range and adds river cruising

Kirker Holidays is to feature its broadest ever range of cruising holidays from this summer, including offering river cruises for the first time.

River cruise France chateauneuf

"Kirker clients are often not natural cruise bookers, so we were cautious about ‘recommending’ a cruise line."

The operator had previously worked with Star Clippers but will now offer river cruises with European Waterways and ocean sailings with Silversea, alongside new itineraries for its long-standing series of specialist Music Festivals at Sea.

Kirker’s marketing manager, Patrick Millar, said: “We have booked an increasing number of pre and post-cruise holidays in recent years, especially via agents, and we know many cruise clients enjoy delegating the smooth running of their holiday from start to finish.

“For some time, we have been asked by our best agents to offer fully inclusive [cruise] packages so that they can book the entire holiday with one supplier and under one Atol.”

With European Waterways, Kirker is featuring a selection of eight-night holidays combining six nights on the water, such as Burgundy & Beaujolais; Venice, Mantua & The Veneto; and The Lochs and Glens of Scotland.

Kirker has also negotiated special rates on several Silversea cruises that include the operator’s key destinations such as Venice, Rome, Barcelona and Athens, and features sailings such as Copenhagen to Stockholm and Greece and Dalmatia.

Millar added: “Kirker clients are often not natural cruise bookers, so we were cautious about ‘recommending’ a cruise line.

“But after extensive research, we have selected a couple of smaller cruise providers whose customer-focused ethos matches our own.”

He said the operator was confident launching so close to summer, given later patterns in the market.

“Many people have held off making summer holiday commitments until post-[general] election, so there is definitely more late demand than usual this year,” Millar added.

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