Cruise Planners December LB 2017

Joanie Ogg’s Interview with Scenic Cruises…

JoanieHiRes

Joanie Ogg, CTC, MCC

I recently sat down with my good friend Randy Goodrich, Sales & Marketing Representative with Scenic Cruises & Emerald Waterways to chat about why Scenic Cruises is so unique and special. I personally  enjoyed visiting one of the ships in Vienna last year when I had the amazing honor of christening one of their sister company’s ships, the Emerald Star. I cannot say enough great things about the Emerald Waterways experience, however take Emerald and add even more amenities and classic service and you have Scenic.

Why is Scenic Cruises the Best Choice for your Discerning river cruise clients?

Most river cruise companies say they are All Inclusive, why does Scenic say they are the Most All Inclusive?

Options cost money and the only options on a Scenic river cruise are for a massage, haircut or very expensive bottle of wine.  Everything else is included in the price, including more choices in dining and onshore experiences than any other river cruise company.  Consider these inclusions:  larger average size suites, butler service for all cabins, 6 dining venues, all beverages(beer, wine, spirits, water, soft drinks, etc) anytime including a stocked mini-bar in all cabins, two or more tours in each destination plus e-bikes, city tours and a proprietary GPS self-guided tour system, several memorable exclusive events each week and more.   We feel that this provides a much more extensive cultural experience for your clients.

Your clients enjoy all of these inclusions and yet will not have a bill at the end of their wonderful cruise.  This enables them to more fully enjoy the entire cruise without feeling like they are adding to their check-out cost every time they do something.

Is a Scenic Cruise a lot more expensive than other river cruise companies?

No, when you compare the special features, services and inclusiveness provided by Scenic to what your client gets with other lines at perhaps a lower base price, it is surprising what a great value Scenic provides to your clients.  Clients are amazed at the what they receive on a Scenic Cruise without any additional costs.

Who is the ideal client for a Scenic Cruise?

Those clients who want only the best service and features will appreciate you offering Scenic Cruises.   Clients who have cruised with Regent Seven Seas, Silversea, Seabourn and Crystal Cruises will also want to know about Scenic, as well as those who prefer 5 Star hotels and resorts where the service levels are exceptional and the special features well worth any additional cost.

What is the best way to learn more about Scenic Cruises and book a cruise?

We have a Scenic Specialist program where agents can learn more about us and also take a test to earn a bonus commission of $100 per person on your next booking booked within 6 months.  In addition, Scenic participates in numerous webinars, email blasts and trade shows.  Also, you can visit www.sceniccruises.com anytime.  There is an Agent Site link at the top right that will provide you with a link to our online booking engine (requires user name/password) where you can quickly check availability and book.  If you prefer to call our 800 number, the reservation agents are often busy.  Stay on hold until the second message and leave your phone number for a call back so you can move on to other work while you wait for the call from Scenic.

What is new for 2016 with Scenic Cruises?

We are introducing new destinations:  Mekong with a spectacular new ship with 34 one bedroom suites; Douro with a wonderful new ship and a different itinerary than other river cruise companies; and several charters on the Irrawaddy and Antarctica on luxury ships.

Scenic Spirit
Scenic Spirit, Mekong Delta

When is the best time for agents to aggressively market 2016?  What is the deposit policy of Scenic?

Now is the absolute best time to provide clients with the best value and availability.  Our Pre-Release 2016 Brochure is now out and we are honoring 2015 pricing plus providing the largest Early Booking Discounts we offer.  This will change in May when our full 2016 brochure is released with new pricing.  We expect many itineraries will sell fast, so for only a $500 deposit per person, agents can hold the cabin for their clients.  Final payments are due 90 days prior to departure.

Randy, thank you so much for sharing this invaluable information with all of our readers.