The Costa Concorida disaster has been a hot topic since it happened and there's been a lot of speculation that its lead consumers to cancel their trips out of fear of a similar incident. But Royal Caribbean thinks its customers recognize the unique nature of this incident.
Royal Caribbean's Senior Vice President of Sales, Vicki Freed, says that Royal Caribbean hasn't seen an increase in cancellations overall, "That’s in big part because the consumer understands this was a very unusual situation, and, if the client has any hesitation, I think the travel professional has a done a great job of reaffirming to them that it’s still fine to take a cruise vacation.”
“There is definitely a value to have the travel agent [during any crisis situation], because the travel agent is the neutral third party,” said Freed. “As trusted advisors, they will give it [the real story] straight to the client because they look at the client for the long term.” She says because agents have no vested interest in the cruise lines, they also can be objective.
In other words, clients trust the agents, and for the agency, keeping clients happy is the most important thing.