Seller of the week

22 Sep 2016

Mystery Shopper's seller of the week: Paul Spencer, Cruise Club UK

This week we sent our secret shopper to book a fly-cruise for two in Manchester.

Sller of the week: Paul Spencer

The mystery shopper visited two travel agencies in the Manchester area and requested a 10 to 12-night fly-cruise for two adults in the Caribbean, with a budget of £7,500.

They then made two searches using the term ‘Caribbean Cruise March 2017’.

The winner

The winner

Cruise Club UK
International House, Church Lane, Prestwich


Score 90%


Mystery Shopper said: When I entered I was told that although it was the contact centre, I could still make a booking. I was directed to wait in a hallway with seats and offered a coffee. The office didn’t feel geared up for visitors but it was practical. My consultant, however, was pleasant and thorough in obtaining information. They said my budget was healthy and I would have no problem with my request. They recommended Oceania as it had a free upgrade to a penthouse suite. The consultant reassured me the ship was small and exclusive with high culinary standards. They mentioned a cheaper alternative, with added extras, but felt Oceania was best at £6,698. I felt at ease with the agent as they had spent time onboard ships. A sense of urgency was created for the upgrade and although the consultant was leaving at 5pm I knew exactly how to book before the agency closed at 8pm. I was so impressed it is likely that I will use Cruise Club UK for my next cruise.

Meet the consultant

Meet the consultant

Paul Spencer,
product executive,
Cruise Club UK


How long with Cruise Club UK?
Next February I’ll have been here 10 years.

How long in travel?
I’ve done this since I was 18. I love to travel and always be constantly on the move.

Are Caribbean cruises a common enquiry?
I would say cruises in the Mediterranean are our most popular closely followed by the Caribbean.

Who are your typical clients?
Our customer base is so broad. We have people looking for a Tui cruise from £495pp to individuals who want a luxury Silversea experience.

Bucket list destination?
Japan is definitely on there. It just seems so different from anywhere that I’ve ever been.

Who makes the best coffee?
The machine out in the hall. You get a perfect latte every time.

React Surveys explainer / disclaimer

TTG has teamed up with React Surveys to simulate a realistic booking process each week – that means a mystery shopper looking for the best deal from agents and operators on the high street, online, on TV or in newspapers. The Mystery Shopper research is carried out on behalf of TTG by React Surveys,and no further details or information can be disclosed. Researchers take into consideration first impression, sales process, product and budget match and extras offered before giving an unbiased opinion of which channel/company they would have booked with on that occasion. We do not claim that the winner is the best in an area or specialist sector, as we may report on competing travel firms in the future. Please note that the aim of Mystery Shopper is not to criticise individual agents or companies, but to promote good sales technique for the benefit of all in the travel trade.

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