Joel Katz, managing director, CLIA Australasia
2017 is gearing up to be another bumper year for the cruise industry in this region. As CLIA releases its annual statistics reporting that 2016 was another significant growth year for cruising, the CLIA team continues to develop our online membership portal to make it easier for travel agents to benefit from the incredible growth. These enhancements are designed to enhance the experience of accessing the CLIA members’ hub, provide more resources, and make the CLIA training and accreditation program far more accessible for agents to become cruise specialists.
Since the launch of the CLIA Learning Academy we have seen a large increase in the number of consultants accessing our training modules to further their education and gain their CLIA Accreditation. For those of you who have not yet taken up the opportunity to explore the content and resources provided as part of your CLIA Membership, we have produced a short video guide to the academy which takes you through each area of the site, highlighting the learning content available. To watch the videos, sign up as a member, or contact CLIA – visit www.cruising.org.au
For those agents who have recently joined CLIA and are not quite sure how to navigate your way through the CLIA Online Learning Academy and understand all the benefits of your membership, please reach out to us. We will be holding webinars to introduce consultants new to CLIA, or interested in joining CLIA, to the extensive training and resource modules we provide.
A key education resource provided by CLIA is our annual Cruise360 Conference. As the biggest cruise industry trade conference and trade show in the region, Cruise360 attracts hundreds of travel agents and travel agency owners, as well as cruise lines, ports and destination representatives, industry suppliers and CLIA executive partners.
We’re excited to announce some new features for this year’s Cruise360 Australasia conference, with the event to include interactive discussions and workshops as well as a range of keynote addresses from international cruise executives. For the first time delegates will have a choice of educational breakout sessions, designed to help boost their business. These workshops will cover topics integral to the success of cruise travel agents, such as marketing to millennial travellers, using social media to grow a business and leveraging personal branding.
We’re also proud to announce an outstanding line-up of international speakers, including keynotes by group president of Princess Cruises and Carnival Australia Jan Swartz, Azamara Club Cruises president and CEO Larry Pimentel, Seabourn’s senior vice president global sales and marketing Chris Austin, and Carnival Cruise Line’s senior vice president commercial port operations and international, Carlos Torres de Navarra.
Popular radio host and business commentator Ross Greenwood will return as MC of Cruise360 2017, providing insight into the impact of cruising within the broader Australian business environment.
Early bird tickets are still available at www.cruising.org.au although spots are filling fast, with interest from travel agents already surpassing 2016 levels. Cruise360 will be held at the new Hyatt Regency Sydney on August 25 2017, followed by an inspection of the latest addition to P&O Cruises’ fleet, Pacific Explorer, the next day.