Category Archives: Cruises

‘Avalon is Globus’ fastest-growing brand in India’: Globus CEO

The Globus family of brands is witnessing huge growth for its Avalon Waterways brand for river cruising from the India market. “Avalon Waterways is our fastest-growing brand in the Indian market,” claimed Scott Nisbet, President and CEO, Globus family of brands. He was in India recently who visited Bengaluru and Mumbai to meet and thank the company’s trade partners for another great year. “The numbers are still relatively small but it has massive potential in India. When we ask our past travellers if they are interested in river cruising, 61 per cent of them said yes. We see this as a very good sign and we have developed a number of river cruises that are shorter – not the seven or 14-night cruises but three, four and five-nights which is perfect for those who just want a taste of what a river cruise is like and maybe add something around it to make it a part of a bigger trip. This will be our focus for 2019 and 2020,” Nisbet said.  

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Avalon Waterways launches river cruise on the Ganges

Avalon Waterways, one of the brands under the Globus family of brands, has launched its new river cruise on the Ganges. Scott Nisbet, President and CEO, Globus family of brands, announced this in Mumbai on his visit to India to meet the travel trade partners. He said, “We started a new river cruise on the Ganges early this week. It is our new Avalon Waterways product and a seven-day cruise, round-trip to Kolkata that goes up north to the little towns. It is a fascinating trip and guests can add to that and turn it into a 13-day, 15-day, and even an 18-day cruise by including the Golden Triangle or Varanasi. So these extensions would not be a river cruise, they would be a tour. We are primarily focusing that on Western markets like US, Canada, Australia and the UK but it is also a great option for Indians as well. It’s a 54-passenger luxury ship, all-inclusive which means all meals, drinks and all excursions. It is also perfect for a small incentive group. We have taken a number of sailing, 75 per cent sold already, agents can start selling now.”  

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TIRUN announces arrival of two Royal Caribbean International’s ships to India

TIRUN Travel Marketing, the exclusive India representative of Royal Caribbean International has announced that the cruise line is bringing two of its most exciting ships, ‘Spectrum of the Seas’ and ‘Explorer of the Seas’ to the Indian shores. The two ships are scheduled to come to India in 2019, offering Indian guests an incredible chance to sail to/from their home country to some idyllic locations across Asia. Spectrum of the Seas is the first of the quantum ultra class of ships and is the largest ship (1,139 feet-long) ever to sail to/from India, having a capacity of accommodating 5,622 guests. Guests can opt for the 5-night Dubai to Mumbai cruise from May 4 to 9, or the 9-night Mumbai to Singapore cruise from May 9 to 18 onboard Spectrum. Through these sailings, guests can enjoy the beauty of Asia’s most stunning ports of call including Dubai, Muscat in Oman, Cochin, Penang in Malaysia and Singapore. Explorer of The Seas, one of the most popular ship in Royal Caribbean International’s fleet, will also offer a world of experiences in itself. Travellers can opt for the first segment of the cruise, a 5-night itinerary beginning from Singapore and reaching Cochin (India) on April 18 via Penang, Malaysia. In the second segment, the cruise willv sail from Cochin (India) to Dubai via Mumbai (India). Speaking on Royal Caribbean’s top-of-the-line ships sailing to India, Varun Chadha, Chief Operating Officer, TIRUN Travel Marketing said, “India is a growth market for cruising and we are thrilled that Spectrum and Explorer will offer Indian cruise enthusiasts easy access to experience the marvels of Royal Caribbean’s services, amenities and many on-board adventures. We are sure that these itineraries …

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139 cruise ships carrying over 1.6 lakh passengers visited India in 2017-18: Alphons

A total of 139 cruise ships carrying 1,62,660 passengers visited India in 2017-18 at six major ports namely, Mumbai Port, Mormugao Port, New Mangalore Port, Cochin Port, Chennai Port and Kolkata Port. These major ports of the country have been developed to attract cruise ships with dedicated terminals and other related infrastructure for berthing of cruise vessels and embarking and disembarking of cruise passengers. The Ministry of Shipping has brought out a Vision Document with a view to develop India as a cruise shipping destination. The document envisages to develop supporting infrastructure for cruise tourism at ports, to give special focus on developing the domestic cruise industry through policy supports, incentives and port infrastructure development. Separately, Ministry of Shipping & Ministry of Tourism has jointly appointed a consultant for ‘Preparation of Action Plan for Development of Cruise Tourism in India. The cruise tourism operations augment local economic activities as business opportunities arise for supply for provisions, transport, hotels, bunkering, etc to cruise ships which generate direct and indirect employment and help in growth of local economy.

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Zen Cruises to start cruises under Jalesh brand from April 2019

Zen Cruises will launch India’s premium cruise line called ‘Jalesh’ on April 17, 2019 in Mumbai with the purchase of its first ship, the Pacific Jewel – a 70,285-ton, 1,900 passenger ship from P&O Australia. Jurgen Bailom, President & CEO, Zen Cruises, says, “She is a beautiful vessel and looks gorgeous. She will be refurbished by March 2019 and and will be christened on April 19, 2019. We are already taking bookings for sailings from Singapore and more guests will join from Colombo after which she will sail up to Mumbai. We already have a loadfactor of 50 per cent. Each sailing can hold up to 1,900 guests. We have so far sold over 50,000 cabins already.” The company has already started taking bookings for this ship directly via Zen’s website as well as through its sales business partners that have been appointed. “We have already started working with several sales business partners and many more will be added. We want to make it a level-playing field and anyone can become our partner. There are many cruise veterans in the business and we have given pre-allocations. We plan to sell approximately 100,000 cabins in 2019 and are very happy with the results so far. The cruise market in India is so big that there is space for many more cruise lines,” Bailom adds.

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India ranks 12th of all Asian cruise destinations: CLIA

India ranks 12th of all Asian cruise destinations with just 2 per cent of Asia’s total calls, according to a latest report titled ‘Asia Cruise Trends’ commissioned by Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA). India hosted 120 calls at its various ports in 2018, a 6 per cent decline from 2017. 88 of those calls are Transit, or 73 per cent of the total. Mumbai sees the most calls at 48, followed by 32 in Cochin. India’s five year CAGR and five-year growth are 6 per cent and 36 per cent, respectively.

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Zen Cruises partners with American cruise-hotel operator for its domestic cruise

Zen Cruises has announced its collaboration with The Apollo Group, an American custom cruise-hotel operator. Jurgen Bailom, President and CEO, Zen Cruises, said, “Zen Cruises has partnered with global experts from the cruise, entertainment, port and marine industry to bring closer home the grandeur experienced by Indians onboard foreign ships. With their vast knowledge of serving global cruise industry, our strategic partners will offer quality services to domestic passengers, both in terms of innovation and experience.” Zen Cruises’ maiden cruise will sail in Indian waters in 2019 on a 70,285-ton, 2,000 passenger ship. The ship, currently in service under a leading cruise line, globally will be renamed ‘Karnika’ post change of ownership and is set for its first domestic sail from Mumbai under the brand name ‘Jalesh Cruises’ in April 2019. The Apollo Group will be spearheading an array of on-board operations ranging from food and beverage, house-keeping, guest services, payrolls, public health, vendor management and revenue collection, among others. Zen Cruises has also announced its collaboration with a leading ship manager as a marine technology partner for providing on-board environment management, itinerary distance planning, fuel forecasting, compliance and class regulations, supply chain and budgeting, among others. For onboard IT and hardware services, broadcasting, satellite and shoreside link, Zen Cruises has collaborated with IPM Solutions, which specialises in providing seamless connectivity, services and project management for cruise ships across the world. Harding Brothers & Flemingo will offer on-board high-street retail therapy from international brands as part of its collaboration with Zen Cruises. The ship will undergo revitalisation in Singapore with Sembcorp Marine.

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Dream Cruises and Star Cruises appoint Travstarz Global Group as their PSA

Travstarz Global Group has announced their entry into cruises by partnering with Genting Cruise Lines as their new Preferred Sales Agent (PSA) for both Dream Cruises and Star Cruises. Announcing the development, Pankaj Nagpal, MD, Travstarz Global Group, said, “We had been eyeing the cruise business for some time now and are elated with our new partnership with Dream Cruises and Star Cruises. This completes our product portfolio as we will get cruises on our online reservation system in.rezb2b.com which already has flights, hotels, tours, transfers, insurance and visas. “Cruising is definitely picking up at a fast pace in India and we hope to see some robust numbers from our Cruise vertical as well. We already have Vani Singh with us who had been a part of Star Cruises in the past and will help drive this vertical, along with Ramanpreet Singh, our GM – Sales, in North and East India and Hema Manghnani leading the team in Mumbai for West and South India. I would specially like to thank Michael Goh,  Naresh Rawal and the entire Genting C ruise Lines team for their faith and trust in Travstarz and look forward to a long partnership”. Naresh Rawal, VP – Sales, GCL, said, ‘Travstarz is one of the fastest growing B2B company in India and we are very glad to have them onboard with us. We are sure that with their dedicated approach and a strong top leadership, this partnership will prove mutually beneficial for us. We assure our full support to Travstarz Team and wish them luck in this new endeavour.”

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River cruise from Kolkata to Bangladesh and Northeast from March 2019

As cruise tourism gains momentum in India after a successful trial of cargo movement to Bangladesh via the inland waterways protocol route, a transboundary river cruise operation is expected to start from Kolkata in March next year through Sunderbans to Bangladesh first, and then towards the Northeast, a senior official said. SVK Reddy, Member, Inland Waterways Authority of India, during a seminar organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in the city recently, said, “Bilateral secretary-level meetings between India and Bangladesh were held in October. It has been decided that one of the river cruise operators would be starting operations from March 2019 from Kolkata through Sunderbans via the protocol route to Bangladesh and then to northeast.” Abdus Samsah, Shipping Secretary, Bangladesh had earlier said that private players will be allowed to operate river cruise between the two countries, which will cover about 1,539 km. Both sides also agreed to allow private operators to run cruise to Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh. Reddy also informed that night navigation facility has been installed up to the Indian border, while Bangladesh is expected to do the same. He said India has agreed to fund up to 80 per cent of the dredging cost in some identified stretches within Bangladesh in the Indo-Bangla protocol route to make it navigable.

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Agents visit Silver Muse cruise ship docked in Mumbai

Around 10 top travel agents and tour operators visited the ultra-luxury cruise ship Silver Muse that had docked in Mumbai and interacted with Daniel Krupp, Vice President, Silversea, onboard the liner over lunch. They also went around the ship for an inspection after a product presentation to get a first-hand feel of the exclusive experience. The ship departed from Muscat on October 23 and docked in Mumbai on October 26. It will then cruise to Kochi on October 28, going on to Colombo, Rangoon, Phuket, Pulau, Klang and finally arriving in Singapore on November 9. The product is currently promoted in India mainly by Cox & Kings and a couple of other agents.

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