HomeCruise NewsCLIA Successfully Concludes Largest Ever UK & Ireland Annual Conference

CLIA Successfully Concludes Largest Ever UK & Ireland Annual Conference

Industry group Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) concluded its largest-ever annual UK and Ireland conference, last weekend.

The three-day event, which was themed #DiscoverMore in recognition of the extensive range of selling opportunities cruise destinations offer, was attended by 850 delegates in Southampton.

The conference included ship visits, conference sessions, an industry trade fair and Sailaway Party. For the first time, agents could visit two ships over consecutive days, from a selection of seven in total.

Harry Judd of McFly put in a celebrity appearance during the conference sessions, while guests on stage included Kelly Craighead, president and CEO of CLIA; Rob Scott, vice president sales, marketing and brand at P&O Cruises; Paul Ludlow, president of Carnival UK and P&O Cruises; Nirmal Saverimuttu, CEO of Virgin Voyages; Laura 
Hodges Bethge, president of Celebrity Cruises; Dondra Ritzenthaler, CEO of Azamara Cruises; and Jeff Corwin, US wildlife biologist, TV personality and Princess Cruises onboard host.

An optional in-person ‘New to Selling Cruise Day’ training session was also available prior to the main events.

CLIA previously announced during the conference that two events will take place later this year: it’s Destination Showcase will return from September 15-17 and be held in Gibraltar, while a new event, the CLIA Weekender, will take place in Barcelona from October 24-26.

Andy Harmer, CLIA managing director for UK & Ireland, said: “Many thanks to the trade for another energising and upbeat CLIA Conference. We’ve had fantastic feedback across the past few days, and are confident agents now have unbeatable insight to help them sell cruise, no matter what their level of experience is.

“I’d also like to thank our member cruise lines who provided such wonderful ships for agents to experience and enjoy. As holidays at sea continue to flourish, we can’t wait to see the trade put their new-found knowledge to good use.”

The seven ships agents could visit at CLIA Conference were:

* Cunard’s Queen Anne

* Fred Olsen’s Borealis

* MSC Virtuosa

* P&O Cruises’ Iona

* P&O Cruises’ Britannia

* Princess Cruises’ Sky Princess

* Silversea’s Silver Dawn

Geoff Percival
Geoff Percival
Geoff has worked in business, news, consumer and travel journalism for more than 25 years; having worked for and contributed to the likes of The Irish Examiner, Business & Finance, Business Plus, The Sunday Times, The Irish News, Senior Times, and The Sunday Tribune.

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