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Word of mouth sees Spirit sales soar

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Word of mouth sees Spirit sales soar

Carnival Australia has reported a significant spike in sales since Carnival Spirit debuted in Australian waters in October last year, with the majority of passengers first time cruisers.

Managing director Jennifer Vandekreeke told a media briefing onboard Carnival Spirit yesterday that word of mouth had proved a valuable marketing tool with guests telling their friends and families about their experiences aboard the ship.

The ship is now booked out till April, with more than 60% of passengers new to cruise, she added.

"We're very excited about that. We're not here to eat other people's lunch, we're here to grow the cruise market," she said.

"There was clearly some demand in the marketplace for a new type of cruise experience to attract the new cruisers."

However, despite the strong start, Vandekreeke insisted there is no further news on a second vessel being brought down under as yet.

Meanwhile, the vessel's Aussification remains a work in progress.

"We've listened very seriously to what our customers are saying," Vandekreeke said. "There are a number of changes that we've made since the first week to ensure that we are meeting Aussie needs."

The addition of a number of family activities is one such change following the cruise line's observation that Aussie families like to spend time together onboard.

"It's a really positive change. It helps our onboard team manage the families onboard," Vandekreeke said.

On top of that, Carnival has had to add 10kgs of salmon per day to its food order to cater to Aussie tastes, and has introduced lamb to the menu.

"Aussies are also far more sun aware that Americans," Vandekreeke continued. "We've had to quintuple the amount of SPF30 we have onboard."

And Carnival's struggle to bring the standard of its coffee in line with that of Australian baristas continues.

Spirit's baristas have been going to "barista school" to perfect their coffee-making skills in Australian cafes.

Carnival will launch a new promotion on Sunday, offering guests up to $300 cashback on a range of cruises in 2013 and 2014.

In addition, Spirit is set to sail to the Melbourne Cup in 2014, with fares starting from $1799 for the seven-day voyage.

 


 

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