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p26 cruise dec5 2/12/08 17:18 Page 26
news cruise
ttglive.com
Ocean Village plea
Lee Hayhurst.
cruises in the Caribbean out of
OCEAN Village bosses have appealed Barbados on the original Ocean Village
to the trade to continue backing ship leading in at £899, or £849 with a
the brand during its final two years, special promotion.
saying agents risk missing out on vital Some agents have been concerned
new business if they do not. that Ocean Village’s exit from the mar-
Carnival UK announced last month ket will undermine the commitment to
that the entry-level line would be the brand from trade partners.
phased out by 2010, with its two ships But Ocean Village managing direc-
to be redeployed to the P&O Cruises tor Nick Lighton said agents had two
Australia fleet. years left to use the brand to find a
But Ocean Village has reassured new market of first-time cruisers.
the trade it is fully committed to “Ocean Village is extremely good at
promoting and investing in the brand getting cruise virgins into the market-
as proved by a new £2 million national place,” he said. “As the brand phases
television advert with Thomas Cook out it gives agents the opportunity
that will air in January. to build a new customer base and
The 2009-10 winter programme transfer those customers on to other
also launches this month with Carnival brands.”
Nick Lighton (centre) promoting Ocean Village’s first national TV campaign, offering £549 cruises
Lighton: OV decision ‘sad’
THE MAN who was the architect of to look at any business and there is
Ocean Village, its current managing always a life cycle,” he said.
director Nick Lighton, admitted he Ocean Village, marketed as the
was disappointed about the decision “cruise for people who don’t do
to close it. cruises”, was launched in 2003 with
He said Carnival UK had looked at one ship. A second was added to the
options to retain the brand, such as fleet in 2006.
offering ex-UK sailings to cut costs, Its blend of relaxed cruising, action-
but revealed that these were not packed excursions and contemporary
thought to be what customers wanted. British entertainment has helped
“It is disappointing but we have dispel the stuffy image of cruising.
achieved a huge amount. The team Lighton said he hoped Ocean Village
remains hugely motivated because customers would switch to the more
they know they have done a great job. informal ships in the P&O Cruises
“But at the end of the day you have brand including Ventura and Oceana.
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