SOURCE: Global Travel International

November 30, 2006 15:10 ET

Cruise Industry Executives, Statistics Suggest That Traveling by Ship Will Increase in 2007

Major Cruise Lines to Share Their Insight at Global Travel International Meeting

MAITLAND, FL -- (MARKET WIRE) -- November 30, 2006 -- New ships with more capacity and new ports will lead to more people selecting cruises as their vacation of choice in 2007, according to Maurice Zarmati, Vice President of Worldwide Sales for Carnival Cruise Lines (NYSE: CCL).

Zarmati will join fellow cruise industry specialists from Norwegian Cruise Line, Norwegian Coastal Voyage and Holland America Line, Inc., on a panel entitled, 'Cruising Into Big Sales,' on Monday, December 4, 2006 from 10:15 a.m. until 12:30 p.m., PST at The Venetian Resort Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The panel is part of the three-day Travelpalooza, a program sponsored by, Inc. (GTI), that is designed to help independent and home-based travel agents learn the latest marketing tactics and travel trends. Twenty-five percent of GTI's bookings are for cruises.

There is a minimum of 150 million people who will vacation this year alone. Only 44 million have cruised, leaving the rest ripe for cruise company's marketing messages. And, based on the Cruise Line industry Association's second quarter numbers, more of those people are already taking to the seas, with 11.67 percent more people enjoying cruises than the same time last year.

A trend that will continue, according the Terri Burke, Vice President of Business Development for Norwegian Cruise Line, will be consumers' growing options on how they book their trips as well as when, where and how they want to travel. Among those options are independent and home-based travel agents who have the same abilities as the corporate agencies without the overhead.

"Three years ago, we had no home-based revenue credit, no dedicated resources and no recognition of this independent side of the travel industry," Burke said. "Today we have an entire department with a dedicated manager and director, revenue credit to business development marketers and other marketing and access tools created so the independent travel agent can better promote our cruises.", a privately owned, Orlando, Fla.-based travel company that serves independent travel agents, is hosting Travelpalooza for its North American agents at The Venetian in Las Vegas, December 3-5, 2006. In addition to Zarmati and Burke, presenters will include Dave Stockert of Holland America and author of "The Idea Machine I and II." The Travelpalooza agenda includes marketing seminars such as 'Finding Your Niche,' 'Low Cost Marketing Strategies,' 'Internet Marketing,' and 'I-Branding.' Additional programs include cruise, tour and hotel product training, qualifying prospects and sales training. Agents will be introduced to new programs and technologies to help them further grow their businesses. For more information on the program, visit

About Global Travel International

Global Travel International (GTI), and pioneered the home-based Independent Travel Agent model in the U.S. and currently has more than 35,000 Agents. Specializing in cruises, vacation packages and group travel, GTI is a privately owned company that invests primarily in training, technology and marketing to equip its Agents with the competitive resources necessary to successfully operate their own home-based travel businesses. By joining GTI, experienced travel agents can focus on selling travel and building their businesses without the burden or cost of a traditional storefront agency. Whether full- or part-time, experienced or beginner, GTI supports its Agents with a team of more than 100 professional support personnel located at GTI's headquarters in Maitland, Florida. Now in its 12th year, GTI is the world's largest Independent Travel Agent network, generating over $125 million in annual revenue. GTI is a member of and/or accredited with the following organizations: ARTA, CLIA, ARC and IATAN. For more information on GTI, visit

Contact Information

  • For more information contact:
    Gail Sideman
    (262) 240-7433
    mobile (414) 559-7433
    email: Email Contact