PLEASE NOTE: Cruise360 2020 Program has not yet been released.  

Cruise360 2019 #NextGeneration Program

The global cruise industry is undergoing fundamental changes encompassing product and hardware, new destinations, demographic shifts and a growing focus on the environment.

As customers turn to experiential travel and seek authenticity, they’re also placing greater importance on doing business with those who share their values. These and other developments will set the agenda for the cruise sector as we welcome a new generation of travellers on board.

With more than 120 new cruise ships and an additional 12 million beds coming online over the next eight years, there is enormous opportunity for agents to set themselves up for success.

Cruise360 Trade Show

The Cruise360 Trade Show will run concurrently with Morning Tea, Lunch and Networking Drinks, featuring a fantastic line up of companies you want to meet, all in one place. This is the perfect opportunity to network with CLIA Cruise Lines, CLIA Executive Partners, Cruise360 Trade Show participants and other cruise professionals at the largest and only official conference of the cruise industry.

We encourage you to make the most of this opportunity to find out the latest news and update your knowledge about the products and services from CLIA Cruise Lines and Executive Partners.

2019 Program

PLEASE NOTE: Speakers are subject to change. Timings and order of program are indicative only and final program is subject to change.

7.00am Registration and Networking

7.30am Executive Partner Networking Breakfast (by invitation only)

8.10am Doors Open

8.30am Conference Welcome

 Chairman’s Welcome

Sture Myrmell, CLIA Australasia Chair and President, Carnival Australia

 Global State of the Industry

Adam Goldstein, CLIA Global Chair and Vice Chairman, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd

Travel agents play a key role as the prime distribution arm of the cruise industry, marketing and selling the majority of cruises booked worldwide. With more clients across the globe asking what the industry is doing in relation to the environment, future sales discussions are increasingly likely to hinge on the issue of sustainability. Having been a key figure at Royal Caribbean for more than 30 years, Adam’s experience and insight into the evolution of the global cruise sector will help highlight the changing landscape of consumer sensitivity in relation to the environment and show how agents need to prepare.

Understanding Traveller Trends

Sandy Haberman, General Manager – Airline & Cruise, Sojern

CLIA global Executive Partner Sojern has specialised in path-to-purchase data for the travel industry for more than a decade and produces a detailed annual State of the Industry Report on inbound and outbound traveller trends in Australia and New Zealand. With a long history in online media, Sandy was appointed to Sojern seven years ago to help launch its cruise, airline and tour operator verticals. He joins us at Cruise360 to reveal cruise highlights from Sojern’s most recent State of the Industry Report and explain how the power of such insight can help better inform marketing strategies.

 Preparing for a Sea Change

A Conversation with Tom McAlpin, President & CEO, Virgin Voyages

As one of CLIA’s newest cruise line members, Virgin Voyages has entered the cruise arena at a time of rapid industry diversification and evolving consumer demands. Having fully embraced the concept of #NextGeneration, Virgin Voyages has had the advantage of being able to design its cruise product from the basics up and has positioned itself to meet the expectations of a new breed of ocean-going traveller. For the first time in Australasia, Tom will discuss the new cruising demographic Virgin Voyages has identified and the process it went through to target that emerging market.

10:30 Cruise360 Trade Show Open with Morning Tea sponsored by Silversea Cruises

Selling to Generation Z – Inspiring, Engaging and Converting a New Generation

Ellen Bettridge, President & CEO, Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection / U River Cruises

A new wave of young travellers is redefining the way we plan, shop, buy and experience travel.  Generation Z – having overtaken the Millennials to become the world’s largest consumer group – are reinventing travel not only for themselves, but also for others who follow their lead.  As the first true natives of the multi-screen world, they have been interacting with devices since infancy and are pursuing a more individualised and connected experience. Ellen will discuss what this means for travel agents and explain how the cruise sector has been among pioneers catering to younger consumers.

Panel – Reimagining Shore Excursions – The Increasing Demand for Authentic and Engaging Experiences

 Moderator:             Bruce Piper, Editor in Chief and Publisher, Business Publishing Group


Michael Mihajlov, Destination Director , Carnival Australia

Debbie Summers, Executive Director, ID Tours; Chair, NZ Cruise Association

Aaron Russ, Managing Director, Wild Earth Travel

Debra Fox, Chief Commercial Officer, APT Travel Group

Cruise passengers are increasingly looking for experience-led travel options and are demanding more immersive and authentic shore excursions. This panel will provide insight into how cruise lines are evolving their excursion offering in response to this and discuss what it means for travel agents as they cater to their clients’ tastes and passions.

13:15 Cruise360 Trade Show Open with Lunch sponsored by Aurora Expeditions

Panel – Sharing Success

Moderator:             Phil Hoffmann AM, Managing Director, Phil Hoffmann Travel


Neil Kirby, Joint Managing Director, Travel Masters

Robyn Sinfield, Owner/Manager, Home Travel Company

Jeff Leckey, Manager, HOOT Cruises/House of Travel

Kathy Pavlidis, Manager, Travel Associates Kew

Carole Smethurst, Managing Director, Bicton Travel

With more than 120 new cruise ships on order and passenger numbers expected to grow from 30 million to 40 million by 2030, cruise offers enormous opportunity for travel agents. Preparing for the growth ahead can be daunting, so this session will help you to learn from industry peers. Five travel agent cruise experts will share the secrets of their success.

Drowning in Plastic

Louise Williams, Walkley Award-winning journalist and co-author of ‘Quitting Plastic’

Cruise lines already recycle more waste per passenger than the average person does on land, but many are now going further to eliminate single-use items and make even greater reductions in the amount of plastics they consume. With the world’s oceans increasingly suffering the impact of disposable plastics, our industry has a vested interest in reducing waste and doing more to protect the marine environment. Louise will help us to understand why this is so important, why customers want action, and what we can all do to support these initiatives.

Panel – #WhereNext: With our industry’s growth comes challenges and responsibilities, but this also means incredible opportunities for CLIA travel agents.  


Sture Myrmell, Chair of CLIA Australasia and President, Carnival Australia

Steve Odell, SVP & Managing Director Asia Pacific, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings

Susan Bonner, VP & Managing Director Australia & NZ, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd

Sarina Bratton, Chairman Asia Pacific Ponant Yacht Cruises & Expeditions

Representatives of CLIA Australasia’s Executive Committee will share their perspectives on some of the important topics covered during Cruise360.

17:00 – 19:00 Cruise360 Trade Show Open with Networking Event sponsored by HFW

PLEASE NOTE: Speakers are subject to change. Timings and order of program are indicative only and final program is subject to change.

Cruise360 2019 Program Download

PLEASE NOTE: Speakers are subject to change. Timings and order of program are indicative only and final program is subject to change.

Buy Tickets for Cruise360 2020 in Brisbane here

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