RICH THOMASELLI | TravelPulse.Com
Troy Warren for CNT #Travel
Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines (RCCL) Chairman and CEO Richard Fain delivered another of his popular video messages on Friday, this one aimed at travel advisors with a plea – help us reach our full booking potential.
Fain has been active on RCCL’s YouTube channel since the start of the pandemic some 20 months go.
The CEO made special mention of his surroundings, standing outside the cruise line’s headquarters for the first time instead of filming in his backyard, a welcome return to normalcy. But he noted that COVID-19 is not over.
“We should not let down our guard. COVID-19 is a pernicious disease … and will continue to produce variants that vex us,” he said. “But now we understand the main drivers; we know how to control the disease.”
Fain emphasized several times the seriousness of the virus but noted that “we don’t need to start every chat with how much we miss going to the theater or a restaurant. We’ll be able to live our lives more normally without facemasks and without panic. And cruising will be at the forefront of all that.”
To that end, Fain noted that cruise ships have some advantages over land-based comparables, saying that ships can be safer than shore-based alternatives.
To travel advisors, Fain said the time has come to stop talking about the disease and to look forward and focus on coming out of the pandemic. The suggestion? Sell cruises.
“People want to travel. In fact, I would say they need to travel,” he said.
While he was appreciative for the uptick in RCCL bookings, Fain said the surge in reservations is coming more from the internet and less from travel advisors.
Fain said it was understandable as people got used to buying things online, and travel advisors had to cut back on staff and marketing.
“Now we need to rebuild. So travel advisors need to do more of what you do so well,” he said. “We need you, our travel partners, to reach out full potential.”
Here is Fain’s full video message.