Daring pax swap

DESPERATE times calls for desperate measures, and that’s exactly what Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV) enacted last month when they undertook an astute passenger swap operation off the coast of Thailand.

173 passengers were transferred from Columbus to Vasco da Gama, while 63 guests were exchanged from the other way, with the aim to shorten the amount of time the line’s guests would need to take to get home safely during the COVID-19 crisis.

Australian and New Zealand passengers boarded Vasco da Gama so that they could sail for Fremantle, WA.

CLIA improves education

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) Australasia is gearing up to launch a new generation online platform this month, which will see all its education and member services hosted in one location.

The new CLIA Member Hub will arm travel agents with a host of improved features to sell cruise including dedicated areas for individual cruise lines, BDM contact lists, webinars, brochures, news and promotions, and cruise line training modules.

“The new platform will be a fantastic asset for travel agents, delivering education in a more engaging and visual format,” said CLIA Head of International Training & Development Peter Kollar.

More common Pence?

US Vice President Mike Pence flagged “significant changes” would need to be made in the practices of the cruise industry when it comes to battling health crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic currently facing the sector.

Pence suggested enhanced measures would include improved screening protocols and shipboard testing to cope with disease prevention, as well as better ways to transport patients to land-based facilities.

The comments were made following an emergency meeting with CLIA Chair Adam Goldstein, who also conceded the sector would need to “develop a significantly enhanced plan” to better manage the entire cycle of cruise passengers when major disease outbreaks take hold.