Thursday, May 26, 2016

Welcome Aboard: Leading Travel Franchise Sails to Alaska for Yearly Conference

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Expedia CruiseShipCenters Reveals Innovative Company Developments Aboard Radiance of the Seas®
VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Expedia® CruiseShipCenters® – part of the Expedia group family of brands – is gearing up once again for its highly anticipated annual national conference at sea. This year, the franchise company is welcoming attendees from May 15 through May 20  onboard Royal Caribbean International’s Radiance of the Seas® sailing out of Vancouver, British Columbia to Alaska.
The theme for the annual event, which is attended by over 350 franchise owners, corporate support staff and travel industry partners, continues to be “Bigger, Better, Stronger, Together,” focusing on the future of the cruise industry as cruise lines significantly invest in new builds and incredible onboard innovations to make cruising appeal to even greater demographics. The theme emphasizes Expedia CruiseShipCenters’ goal to continuously improve support and drive results toward its mission to
“empower franchisees with a proven system to grow a profitable and valuable business.”
This year’s conference will focus more than ever on planning and performance for franchise owners to help them grow and build equity in their business. With the industry steadily on the rise, Cruise Lines International Association reports that nearly 24 million people are expected to set sail in 2016 and 27 new ocean, river and specialty ships are scheduled to debut this year to keep up with consumer demand. As the cruise industry continues to evolve, consumers are faced with an ever-growing and overwhelming array of options, making Expedia CruiseShipCenters’ expertise an invaluable resource in planning a spectacular vacation experience.
The five-day conference, being held on an Alaska cruise, contains an action-packed agenda featuring executive keynote presentations, workshops and panel discussions aimed at sharing best practices and helping franchisees prepare for an exciting year ahead. Attendees will leave with insight into new and improved tools and support to help them drive greater sales, profitability and business value. In addition to keynote presentations to be delivered onboard by industry moguls such as Vicki Freed, senior vice president, sales and trade support & services for Royal Caribbean International, corporate keynote presentation highlights also include:
“Creating Sustainable Competitive Advantage” – President of Expedia CruiseShipCenters, Matthew Eichhorst, will discuss how the company will benefit from his new appointment as head of Expedia group’s global One Cruise team, as well as the current market conditions, highlighting how the overly competitive market has developed from both the industry facing external challenges and the incredible opportunity on the horizon. He will emphasize how franchisees can leverage the resources both within Expedia CruiseShipCenters and of the greater Expedia group to create a sustainable competitive advantage.
“A New Level in Business Value” – Senior Vice President, Franchise & Supplier Performance, Geraldine Ree, will outline the many ways Expedia CruiseShipCenters is investing, organizing and innovating to take the system, business and franchise model to a new level within the industry.
“Improving Marketing Program Effectiveness” – Vice President of Marketing, John Mast, will share insight on marketing priorities and key program learning for franchisees to deploy in their marketing plans, discussing some of the programs currently under review and revealing new projects in development for launch in the fall.
“We look forward to bringing together industry leaders and key players onboard to celebrate our successes, share best practices and build lasting relationships,” said Eichhorst. “This year’s conference will focus on where we are today, where we are going and how our franchisees can leverage the Expedia group’s global cruise strategy to grow sales locally and boost their profitability. The success of our company is directly tied to the success of our franchisees, and we infuse our conference with the training, industry knowledge, and networking opportunities to equip them for success in the rest of 2016 and beyond
With the brand’s proven business model – affordable to start and extremely scalable – combined with its focus on providing spectacular customer service and the rapid growth of the cruise industry overall, Expedia CruiseShipCenters is looking to award 45 new franchises in 2016. The leading travel company is seeking franchisees  in the metropolitan and surrounding areas of New York with 35 franchise locations available, Orlando with nine locations available, Los Angeles with 20 locations available, San Francisco with 14 locations available, Atlanta with 13 locations available, and Seattle with 15 locations available. These cities, within easy driving distance of cruise departure ports, provide the ideal foundation for a new travel agency franchise.
About Expedia CruiseShipCenters
Expedia CruiseShipCenters provides exceptional value and expert advice for travelers booking cruises and vacations through its network of 220 retail travel agency franchises. As part of the Expedia group family of brands, the company’s 4,000 Vacation Consultants sell a wide range of vacation products including cruises, flights, hotels, vacation packages, tours, excursions and more. The company has been navigating spectacular vacation experiences for customers across North America for more than 29 years. For more information on Expedia CruiseShipCenters, visit
Expedia and CruiseShipCenters are trademarks or registered trademarks of Expedia, Inc. or its affiliates in the U.S. and/or other countries. Other logos or product and company names mentioned herein may be the property of their respective owners. © 2016 Expedia. All rights reserved. CST # 2029030-50 and CST # 20893-43

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