Following the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) revision of 2017 passenger figures on Friday, the organisation has announced a slew of travel agent training and engagement materials fresh for 2018, including podcasts, a weekly vlog and river cruise specialist credit scheme.

The podcasts, which will be released once a quarter, will act as CLIA’s flagship broadcast and will be made up of interviews with industry movers and shakers, expert opinion on cruise news as well as lively market analysis. The weekly vlogs will offer a 60-second round-up of the week’s cruise news by CLIA’s social media rep, Toby Cruse. Both shows will be launched on CLIA’s Cruise Experts site,

Andy Harmer, director CLIA UK & Ireland, said: “In the last agent survey, 89% of respondents valued our role in terms of providing an industry level commentary, analysis and opinion on key industry issues. We hope that the podcasts and weekly news podcasts will be an accessible and entertaining way for us to communicate with our agents.”

Andy Harmer, Cruise Lines International Association

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The quarterly podcast will be available at the end of June and will host interviews with a line-up of guests such as Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, president and CEO of Celebrity Cruises and the mayor of Dubrovnik, who will be discussing the his work with the industry to counter over-tourism in the southern Croatia.

“Professional development and accreditation is one of the most important parts of what CLIA offers”

Cruise Lines International Association is also launching its river specialist accreditation course in the next few weeks, meaning agents can study to become a River Cruise Ambassador.

Harmer concluded: “Professional development and accreditation is one of the most important parts of what CLIA offers, according to 91% of our members. We are delighted to be offering the chance to specialise in the dynamic river cruise sector, one of the fast-growing parts of our industry, for the first time.

“At CLIA we are continually investing in, and exploring, new and innovative ways of communicating with our agents and we hope that through these new initiatives for 2018 we are able to convey key messages and information in engaging and fun ways.”

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