It’s the amazing deal that puts Genting Dream at the forefront of Singapore’s ambitions to be the cruise hub of Asia.
The luxury mega ship, which takes more than 3,500 guests, has called Singapore home since the turn of the year after moving from Hong Kong.
With itineraries covering Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Myanmar, she is a major test of Singapore’s ability to attract year-round guests from across the region – and beyond.
With nine restaurants, two spas, a bowling alley, water slides, a luxurious “ship-within-a-ship” concept called The Palace and more, she is already doing big business among cruisers from Indonesia and India.
Genting has strong allies in Singapore Tourism Board and Cahngi Airport Group. The two have signed a partnership worth $28 million for the next two years designed to bring 600,000 visitors and more than $250 million to the republic.
The prize is dominance of the fly-cruise market, which accesses cruisers from anywhere – including the lucrative Australian and New Zealand markets.
The Chief Executive of Changi Airport said at the ship’s launch: “The Asia-Pacific is currently the largest aviation market in the world, and will be the fastest growing region in the next 20 years.
“With Changi Airport’s strong air connectivity to more than 380 cities worldwide, Singapore is well positioned to capitalise on this growth opportunity and bring more fly-cruise traffic here, serving as a cruise hub for the region.”
In exclusive comments to ASEAN Cruise News, Mr Michael Goh, Senior Vice President – International Sales, Genting Cruise Lines said the region’s travel agents are an integral part of the line’s marketing plans.
“As a pioneer in the Asian cruising industry, we have established an extensive network of travel agents globally, especially here in the Asian region.
“We are excited to be part of this collaboration as Singapore is a popular travel destination with great infrastructure and air connectivity that supports the inbound Fly-Cruise sector.
“Dream Cruises will continue to boost the fly-cruise segment with a wide spectrum of initiatives, which include regular travel agent and media familiarization cruises, product training workshops, consumer road shows and travel fairs – showcasing our innovative offerings from special interest to thematic cruises with various enrichment programs, complemented by a series of strong marketing campaigns and promotional tie-ups to increase bookings for the respective fly-cruise source markets.
“Dream Cruises looks forward to welcoming guests from across the region to explore and expand their holiday experience in Southeast Asia with a luxury cruise aboard Genting Dream from her new homeport in Singapore.”
Mr Goh said travel agents would be a particular focus, with famils and incentives aimed at getting them to understand the product.
“We will continue to provide the necessary support and training as outlined earlier for our travel agents to encourage the sales of Fly-Cruise packages across the region.
“In addition, we will incentivise and reward our travel agents with various attractive incentives to drive sales and increased bookings from the fly-cruise segment.”
When ASEAN Cruise News boarded the Genting Dream for a special famil at the New Year, the ship was at capacity with more than 4,000 passengers – many families from India and Indonesia were enjoying the facilities.
Mr Goh said fly-cruise would be a big focus for the line.
“The Fly-Cruise segment will remain a sizeable component of the bookings for Genting Dream in Singapore with key source markets from Southeast Asia, as well as from India, Japan, Korea and Australia.”
He added: “The cruise industry in the region is growing by leaps and bounds and we remain highly optimistic of the continued growth and development in 2018.
“With Genting Dream homeported in Singapore, we are creating opportunities to further grow the cruise tourism sector in Singapore and across the region with the increased in capacity. “We are confident that our regional travel agents can leverage on this excellent potential revenue generating opportunity and concurrently expand their source markets via the fly-cruise and MICE sector as well.