Open Jaw

Encore Cruises Now Packages Cruise Like ITC!

Encore is now in SIREV! Offering 1 click for air, cruise & transfers

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At Encore Cruises, the key to nearly 25 years of success is keeping top of mind what created that success in the first place: making a cruise seller’s life easier and more profitable.

So why book cruise through a tour operator? “Agents are looking for one place where they can find everything they need,” says Nathalie Tanious, TravelBrands V.P. Cruise. “Our mission is to deliver exactly that, through a combination of high-touch service and high-technology tools.”

Encore already offers what it believes to be the #1 online cruise tool in the business, which, among many other things, enables agents to get instant pricing and inventory on a dozen cruise lines and compare pricing on up to four cruise lines/sailings at a time.

But right now Tanious is excited about another innovation. The technology is not new to most Canadian agents, but Encore is using it in a novel way.

We’re talking about SoftVoyage’s SIREV, the shopping and booking system used by thousands of agents all over Canada. Used mostly to book ITC product, SIREV is now being employed by Encore Cruises to make booking air, transfer and cruise packages easier than ever. 

“Through one platform agents can now get direct access to packaged or bundled cruise product. It’s a system they know very well, and it’s so easy to book – a few clicks and you’re done,” says Tanious.

A major selling proposition for Encore Cruises today is its position as a member of the TravelBrands family – and the vast amount of product offered by the travel brands that make up the group: Intair/Network, which offers flights from over 70 different sked airlines; Holiday House, a leading FIT specialist offering more than 60,000 hotels, car rentals and much more; Hawaii and California specialist Fun Sun Vacations; Alba Tours, with a strong Italy focus and new offerings in Portugal, Greece, Ireland, Turkey and other destinations: and Boomerang Tours and Exotik Tours, which offer pre- and post-cruise options in exotic destinations.

"Through one platform agents can now get direct access to packaged or bundled cruise product."

“Cross-selling and upselling is key to agent income and success,” says Tanious. “We offer all types of cruising at Encore, and then through our sister brands we can easily add all the elements to make up a complete vacation.”

The TravelBrands V.P. Cruises says the company’s staff – many with 15-20 years of tenure – is a major point of differentiation. “It’s all about service, and expertise, and knowing that you can trust the information you receive, and knowing there’s someone you can call to help in specific situations. We’ve got all that, and agents love the level of service we provide.”

Tanious says that like its competitors, Encore Cruises offers agent-desired things like Canadian dollar pricing and a strong loyalty program in Loyalty Points.

But another important differentiator is the ‘Only at Encore’ exclusive offers, some targeted to clients, others as agent incentives. For agents, it’s often a bonus commission, while for clients it could be an exclusive onboard credit, spa treatment, specialty dinner or prepaid gratuities.

“We all have access to the same cruise line promotions, but we like to add a layer, something exclusive that sets us apart. We try to get as creative as we can because at the end of the day we know that agents are working hard to get the business.”

In a tight margin business, Tanious says a little incentive can go a long way. She says a $50 bonus commission offer for cruises of 6 nights or longer has been a major success. So much so that Encore has extended the offer to all new bookings made through 31MAY.

“We get it,” she says. “The consumer belongs to the agent. We just have to thank the agents for steering the business our way and service them in the best way possible.”

For more in depth training on Encore Cruises, see their recent Headliner.


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