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Old November 8th, 2004, 03:13 PM
Richard Stein
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Default What agents think of RCCL/Celebrity's no rebate rule

The following story appeared on page 4 of the November 1, 2004 Travel Weekly under the heading “Agents: RCL’s no-rebate policy hurts sale”. Per Sy Ripka, president of eCruise.com “Royal Caribbean and Celebrity sales are down by 40% to 50%. At the same time Princess and Holland America and others have picked up or are staying strong.” At Cruise Value Center, owner Jeff Kivet is quoted as saying that “ internet sales of Royal Caribbean and Celebrity are down 75%, but phone sales with agents is not down as much.” One internet retailer is quoted “Agents are trained to get the sale no matter what. If you have a wavering customer, you start offering other products. Meanwhile Princess and HAL sales have taken off in a way I haven’t see in quite a while.” These are direct quotes from the article to let you know how RCCL’s and Celebrity’s new no rebate policy is going with agents. Agents who also get Travel Weekly can confirm this article.
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Old November 8th, 2004, 04:39 PM
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Default Re: What agents think of RCCL/Celebrity's no rebate rule

RCI claims initial "push" for this policy came from independant agents who complained they were not working on a level playing field.

However, this is surely going to work out to a "careful what you wish for" scenario. I think there is going to be a sizeable portion of the cruising public who, once they see, or think, pricing is going to be standard no matter where they book, will be choose to book directly with the cruise lines.

I'm already hearing from agents I do deal with that this is happening, and affecting their overall business.

The cruise lines end up the bigger winner, selling cabins while paying NO commissions, and the customer ends up paying more than they could have before.

The agents who complained before they wanted a level playing field with the large discount agencies, now find they've added to their competion, competing with the cruise line themselves.

Agents who thought it was a tough business before (which it was) are going to be kicking the cat!

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Old November 8th, 2004, 07:22 PM
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Default Re: What agents think of RCCL/Celebrity's no rebate rule

Dear Kuki: I agree with you. Carnival is selling 15% of their cabins direct. Celebrity offered me a discount on their direct line as a captains club elite member (the travel agent commission) that they would not allow my agent to sell for. If you are going to level the playing field have the cruise line and agent on the same level field. I used to sell cruises, but the big agencies offered prices I could not and went back to the field where I have my degree. Will try again when my government pension kicks in.
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Old November 8th, 2004, 08:48 PM
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Default Re: What agents think of RCCL/Celebrity's no rebate rule

I guess they didn't learn from Renaissance's experince.
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Old November 21st, 2004, 10:26 PM
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Default Re: What agents think of RCCL/Celebrity's no rebate rule

The new policy sucks. I emailed Mr Williams at RCL and explained to him how dissatisfied I was with this change in policy. I have not heard from him and its been 3 weeks.
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Old November 25th, 2004, 02:43 PM
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Default Re: What agents think of RCCL/Celebrity's no rebate rule

idssms, you never will hear from him.

We the passengers are the biggest loosers in this new policy change
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Old November 25th, 2004, 02:54 PM
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Default Re: What agents think of RCCL/Celebrity's no rebate rule

Carnival and NCL are following right along with RCCL.

The travel agent I use got a letter from Carnival staing this policy to begin on Jan 1.

Travel Weekly had posted about NCL.
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Old November 27th, 2004, 10:35 AM
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Default Re: What agents think of RCCL/Celebrity's no rebate rule

The policies are, and will be, that the agents cannot ADVERTISE cruises for less than shown on the cruiseline websites. The individual agents can still rebate on a one to one basis. Not that is not true on RCI/Celeb as they cannot rebate at all EXCEPT for group cruises that are sold as groups and the cruiseline approves of them. They did leave a few loopholes in the policies.
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