tools for agents You’ll find feedback from passengers about all of those trips, plus many others, at ShoreTrips’ website, a powerful tool for travel agents. “We have developed different ways for agents to sell this product,” Barry says. “There are always new ports, and agents today are not always as fortunate as they used to be, where they could travel all the time. We have been to these places and have sent our staff to follow us so they are experienced as well, so we are able to guide the agents, help them figure out the abilities and interests of their clients, make suggestions, and customize things. If someone has a group of orchid lovers, we can customize some trips that will be really special for them.” The website also has tools linking ShoreTrips directly with the client for questions and even individual bookings—ensuring the agent commission, of course.
“We have lots of webinars where we train travel agencies—show them how to make a booking, give a history of what we do, why we’re better and different, why it’s beneficial to them and the agency to sell shore excursions,” Barry says. “The average shore excursion is about $78. If a customer is average, he’s going to buy slightly more than two shore excursions in a 1-week cruise. So travel agents make around $16 on average for each passenger. It’s not a tremendous amount by itself, but it’s an extra incentive that adds up, especially when people are coming back ready to book another cruise. If agents plan ahead on vacation, those passengers will have a much better time because they’re knowledgeable about their expectations and with us, they have a system of fulfilling those expectations.”