Saga Cruises is bringing forward the launch of its 2023 programme while ramping up trade training in a two-pronged bid to capitalise on strong demand for cruising and the debut of its latest ship, Spirit of Adventure.
Head of trade sales Iain Powell, speaking to TTG at Spirit of Adventure’s naming ceremony on Monday (19 July), said the line had retained 70% of existing guests since the start of the pandemic, putting Saga in a good position for forward business.
Powell added the line had seen “astounding” forward bookings through the trade, which had surpassed 2019 levels for three of the last six months. “It shows the demand that’s out there and coming through travel agents – we can’t thank them enough for what they’ve done,” he said.
Powell claimed Saga’s cruise capacity was 45% sold for next year, prompting it to bring forward the launch of its 2023 programmes to November and December instead of next spring. The line’s Saga Experts online training site is also being bolstered with new e-learning modules, plus additional content and ship imagery.
There are also plans to add online meetings with travel agencies, along with a ship visit programme starting in the autumn that will focusing on Spirit of Adventure in Dover and Southampton, with visits organised in line with Covid protocols.