Sunday, December 14, 2008

Get Your "Cruise Stimulus" from Holland America Line

With the economy in the doldrums and the federal government looking for ways to bail out industries, Holland America Line is offering a novel way to encourage a commitment to cruising during the coming year by unveiling its Vacation Stimulus Plan. Just in time for "Wave Season," not only will you as a passenger get a good deal, your travel agent will be rewarded as well.

“There’s never been a better time to get more, pay less and sail away from it all,” says Richard D. Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. “And the return on investment is guaranteed. Plus, travel sellers have great opportunities to earn commissions, win cruise prizes and enhance groups with increased tour conductor credits.”

To boost cruise sales, the six-point agent plan encompasses (1) unprecedented low fares, (2) deposits reduced by 50% on cruises and cruisetours departing on or after May 1, 2009, (3) a 25% savings on standard Cancellation Protection Plan on cruises and cruisetours departing on or after May 1, 2009, (4) suspended fuel supplements for cruises departing on or after Dec. 17, 2008, (5) exclusive cruise prizes for booking by Feb. 28, 2009, and (6) increased tour conductor credits on select sailings in 2009.

“Our message is to buy low and live high. With great fares, reduced deposits and a lower fee to protect the cost of a vacation, there really has never been a better time to cruise with Holland America Line,” added Meadows. “Vacationers are increasingly looking for best values, and Holland America Line’s Vacation Stimulus Plan provides a number of extra features and benefits.”

Vacation Stimulus Plan Elements

  • Unprecedented Low Fares: Tremendous values are available on most itineraries worldwide, including the current View and Verandah Cruise sale Promotion that offers outside and verandah staterooms at terrific values. Guests can enjoy an upgrade from an inside stateroom to an outside stateroom for as little as $50 or upgrade from an outside stateroom to verandah accommodations from just $100. Lead fares for the View & Verandah promotion start at $499 for 7-day Alaska cruises, $549 for 7-day Caribbean sailing, and $999 for 12-day Europe and Panama Canal voyages. There are savings to exotic destinations, like $999 for 16-day South America cruises, $899 for 14-day Australia/New Zealand cruises, and $1,299 for 16-day Southeast Asia sailings. On select sailings, third and fourths in staterooms are as little as $99 per person. Taxes are additional on all per person cruise fares.

  • Reduced Deposit: For a limited time, Holland America Line has reduced the deposit requirements by 50% on all cruises and Alaska cruisetours departing on or after May 1, 2009. For example a $350 per-person deposit required on most seven-day cruises is reduced to $175. Reduced deposits apply to group bookings as well.

  • Cancellation Protection Savings: The Vacation Stimulus Plan also offers a 25% savings on the popular standard Cancellation Protection Plan when purchased with a new booking for departures on or after May 1, 2009. Cancellation Protection Plan covers a portion of the cost of a cruise fare in the event of cancellation by the guest for any reason.

  • Fuel Supplement Suspended: In addition, Holland America Line has suspended the $9 per guest per day fuel supplement for departures on or after Dec. 17, 2008.

  • Increased Tour Conductor Credits on Select Cruises: Several sailings in 2009 will also offer tour conductor credits at one for 10 guests booked or one for 12 instead of the standard 1 for 15 policy. Almost every cruise destination is represented in these selected departures.

  • View & Verandah Cruise Prize Drawing for Agents: Once agents register at the View and Verandah promotional webpage, every booking made through Feb. 28, 2009, enters them to win one of three Holland America Line cruises.

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