The travel industry is very much a ‘people’ industry and one of the pleasures of experiencing a ship launch is meeting up with friends from the cruise lines. I’ve just had a chat with Andy Stuart who is EVP Global Sales and Passenger Services for Norwegian Cruise Lines based in Miami. Andy is originally from the UK and it was an ideal opportunity to discuss one of the most important decisions in the Cruise Industry ‘deployment’. These informal talks are a perfect way for Cruise Specialists like myself and the decision makers at cruise lines to discuss what our guests are looking for and current trends. Andy and his team have invested heavily in the European market with 4 ships in Europe in summer 2013 and 2 ships in Europe winter 2013 / 2014 as well as having cruises to Alaska, the Caribbean, Bermuda, Panama Canal, Transatlantic, Hawaii and the Mexican Riviera. With additional ships coming to the fleet including Norwegian Breakaway, Norwegian Getaway (which launches early 2014) and the new ‘Breakaway plus’ ship arriving in 2015 the question of where ships sail is vitally important. I have given Andy my wish list including a ship catering to International Guests in Asia, a ship in Australia and a Breakaway Class ship sailing in the Eastern Mediterranean. All of these ideas will be looked at as well as the other 100 ideas Andy will hear over the next few days (he actually attended 17 meet and greet presentations yesterday so I’m sure he has received some interesting ideas). One thing that does stand out is decision makers like Andy do listen and let’s hope in the 2015 deployment we will see one of Norwegian Cruise Lines fleet sailing on World Sectors allowing Lattitude Members to explore more of the world on a Norwegian Cruise Lines ship. Picture below Francis Riley VP & General Manager International & Andy Stewart.