Monday, July 13, 2009

Hurtigruten sees Antarctic sales soar thanks to TV programme


Hurtigruten is urging agents to capitalise on increased interest in its Antarctic tours which has been driven by the popularity of a TV programme.

Sales and marketing director Kathryn Beadle said the cruise operator's 30% increase in call volumes for its Antarctic cruises programmes had been fuelled by BBC 2's On Thin Ice, which sees former Olympic rower James Cracknell and TV presenter Ben Fogle train and compete in the Amundsen Omega 3 South Pole Race.

Beadle said: "In our experience, programmes like this always spark an increase in interest to the destination.

"Obviously, passengers on our voyages will not be subjected to the expedition conditions these celebrities undertook, but it still helps to showcase the destination and plants seeds in the minds of potential customers who may have a desire to head to the end of the world.

"We want agents to ride on the back of this show and we've put a new offer in place to assist."

She added the cruise operator is offering agents discounts on trips booked before August 31.

The cruise operator is also aiming to take advantage of the 100th anniversary of the return of explorer Ernest Shackleton's Nimrod Expedition to the South Pole, which lasted from 1907 to 1909. Shackleton's team reached within 100 miles of the South Pole, the furthest south humans had ever ventured.

The two offers include savings of £670 on the nine-day Antarctic Discovery cruise, which now leads in at £2,681 per person, while a saving of £822 means Shackleton's Antarctica tour also leads in at £3,529 although both packages exclude international flights.

Picture courtesy of the BBC

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