Top tips to attract first-time customers to river cruises in Asia

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CLIA hosted the inaugural river cruise and destination forum in Vietnam and Cambodia last month to a resounding success.

Asia is often overlooked as a cruise destination – both in terms of river and ocean itineraries, with the majority of customers still heading to the Caribbean or Mediterranean, or to the rivers of Europe. However, there are signs that the tide is turning, as Asia is the fastest growing region for river cruises, and is the driving force behind a 15 percent rise in 2016 in British river cruise passengers sailing outside of Europe.

So what is the draw of a river cruise holiday?

For travel agents, river cruising is “an easy sell” because of the multitude and variety of cultural experiences available across the region. With many consumers looking for authentic experiences, river cruising is an excellent way for them to experience Asia, taste the great food and enjoy life.

Top 3 tips to attract first-time river cruises to Asia – as shared by the panel of experts who spoke at the CLIA event:

  1. Highlight the ease of travel – river cruising is the best way to see remote parts of Asia where the road conditions are not the best.
  2. A river cruise is a perfect holiday for consumers keen to try something new but do not have the confidence themselves to come out independently.
  3. Use videos to “bring to life” river cruising in Asia

What are you waiting for? Promote river cruise holidays to your customers today.

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA)’s membership offers a globally recognised online training and accreditation programme – specially designed for travel agents – with elective modules dedicated to river cruising. Visit www.cliaasia.org to join.

Jiali Wong is the Regional Manager for Asia, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA)