The cruise operator Hapag-Lloyd Cruises has not only reaffirmed its commitment to an international strategy but has also evaluated the different needs of its new, international guests. Following EUROPA 2's first year of operation, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises was able to increase its international guest base by 42 % between 2013 and June 2014. Taking its marketing activity forward, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises has identified the United Kingdom, United States, the Netherlands, Belgium, Australia, and Scandinavia as priority, international target markets.
Karl J. Pojer, Chief Executive Officer of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises comments: "I am delighted to see the number of bookings increasing from our international markets. We have received a lot of positive feedback, which is reflected by an overall 97% guest recommendation rate. We would like to embrace further our new international markets and therefore address the different needs of our international guests. From October 1, we will apply this introductory offer, an 'on-board beverage credit', to all international markets."
The value of the beverage credit is dependent upon the length of the cruise: For a cruise up to six nights, a beverage credit of €100 per person is offered. For a cruise lasting for seven to nine nights the international guest will receive a beverage credit of €150 per person. If the cruise lasts longer than ten days a beverage credit of €200 will apply to each guest.
Pojer explains further: "Diversity and choice are two of the main elements which define our high standards on board. For example, we have approximately 500 varieties of wines available on board EUROPA 2 - one of the largest wine menus on the high seas. By offering this 'beverage credit' we are ensuring this diversity, however, are also offering our international guest the flexibility to make choices."
Guests cruising on board Hapag-Lloyd Cruises' EUROPA 2 enjoy many features already included in the cruise fare: a complimentary, in-suite, mini bar with a selection of non-alcoholic and alcoholic drinks (restocked twice a day); a choice of dining in all seven restaurants - including the specialty restaurants on board, where no additional surcharge applies; and gratuities.
Hapag-Lloyd Cruises' international strategy:
With its fleet of two ultra-luxury cruise ships and two expedition ships, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises is regarded today as one of the leading operators in the luxury and expedition segment in the German-speaking countries. All cruises on board the latest fleet member EUROPA 2 are international operated in both English and German. In its expedition segment, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises also offers a selection of international cruises on board its 5-star-rated expedition ship HANSEATIC. The expansion of marketing activities in international markets goes hand-in-hand with the focus on these areas of luxury and expedition.
Karl J. Pojer concludes: "We are aware of the challenges of the international marketplace; and conscious of existing industry competition. We believe, however, that our concept of combining 5-star plus standards with sophisticated informality and flexible route planning is the key to the way forward and continued success. We understand and are committed to this new way of enjoying relaxed luxury."
Hamburg, July 2014