How do Aussies stack up?

Posted on Sunday, February 17, 2013 | 0 comments
Americans have for a long time held the top spot in the cruising market, but there is a newcomer snapping at their heels. Australians are taking to cruising big time, and already the big cruise lines are sending ships to be based down under. Royal Caribbean's Rhapsody, Radiance and Voyager of the seas are common sights in Sydney and surrounds, and both the Sun Princess and Dawn Princess are now true-blue, with Australian Dollars being used as the onboard currency. The Carnival Spirit is another ship which has made the move and now exclusively serves the Australasian market.

by Jimmy Harris Flickr Creative Commons

As well as changing currency and power points, the Carnival Spirit was renovated in an effort to better match the Australian lifestyle, adding a BBQ, thrillseeking waterslide and a few other features in a 7 million dollar "Aussiefication." However, Carnival has had a bit of a learning curve as it discovers more ways in which Australian (and Kiwi) cruisers differ from their American counterparts.

This article on outlines a few of the differences between the two markets which came as a surprise to Carnival. Aussies and kiwis are much more aware of the sun and the damage it can cause, so a stock-up of hats, sunscreen and covered sun loungers was required. Drinking habits also differ, not so much in the quantities but in the types of drinks ordered- gin and tonic is a favourite down under, whilst American cruisers love rum-based cocktails. Salmon is an Australian favourite, so more has to be brought onboard for Spirit cruises, as well as a lot more coffee to fuel the active Aussies!

by Penny Higgins Flickr Creative Commons

A heartwarming difference is the addition of more family-focused activities, as Australian families like to spend time together on their cruise rather than take full advantage of the Kids Clubs. The Spirit has changed dining times to better enable families to eat together, and added things such as family movie times.

Other small changes have been made not just on the Spirit but on the Australia-based Princess ships- vegemite often replaces peanut butter, fitness classes have been increased to keep up with demand, and tips made optional.

The Australian cruise market is on the up, and it is good to see the big cruise lines responding and adapting to make the experience great for Aussies and Kiwis!

Author: Ryan Posa+

ICCA Awards 2013- Congratulations Sarah!

Posted on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 | 0 comments
The International Cruise Council Australasia hosted their annual awards night in Sydney last weekend, honoring the best agents and agencies in the Australasian cruise industry. Hosted by Deborah Hutton, the event was attended by many people from both cruise lines and agencies. They dressed to the nines for a great night out which included a presentation by Christine Duffy, president of the Cruise Lines International Association.

We at Cruise Republic were very happy to receive Silver in the NZ Agency of the Year category, and extremely proud of our Team Leader Sarah Goldfinch, who was named the NZ Consultant of the Year.

Cruise Republic New Zealand's trophy case is getting quite full now, with three silvers and one bronze award in the Agency of the Year category over the past 4 years!

Sarah with Anne Sherry, CEO of Carnival Cruises

Ryan with John Molinaro from Uniworld and Deborah Hutton

Photos from Travel Today NZ

Author: Ryan Posa+