Royal Caribbean will be looking to honour “someone who has dedicated their life to children” as Harmony’s godmother the line’s boss has revealed, with the competition potentially extended to the UK.
President Michael Bayley told TTG the “rough plan” was to “find somebody who had committed their life to the education of children in someway”.
He said the competition would be “communicated through the schools system in the US”, and that the line was mooting plans to extend the competition to the UK.
“This ship is the ultimate family holiday – parents can enjoy the adult spaces and kids can have a blast. [This competition] will get people talking about Harmony at schools and over the dinner table.”
Bayley was speaking onboard Harmony as the 6,780-passenger ship was showcased to agents for the first time.
But despite its size, Bayley dismissed concerns the additional capacity could drive prices down – as suggested by Azamara president Larry Pimentel last week at the Clia Conference.
“It’s about taking the opportunity to grow the market,” he said. “If you take the market, and you increase capacity and supply, there will be pressure on pricing. But if you’re growing the market with it, you shouldn’t have pressure because you’re growing your customer base, along with capacity.
“It’s about going after the new-to-cruise market, and other markets. Asia for instance has been growing 50-60% a year.
“I’m always concerned about pricing,” he added, “but I’m generally optimistic about the future.”
Elsewhere, Bayley also insisted that agents remained pivotal to Royal Caribbean’s success.
“Travel agents for Royal Caribbean will always be key partners,” he said. “They are our most important partners. It’s something we have been consistent about since the beginning of Royal Caribbean, and we’re not going to change that policy.
“We’ve put a lot of investment in our travel partners and it’s the same in every market that we operate in.”