Pacific Travel Partners, a subsidiary of Aurora Expeditions, plans to offer land, river and ocean cruise vacations through a new brand, Vantage Explorations.
The new brand is a spinoff from Pacific’s acquisition this month of Vantage Deluxe Travel, a Massachusetts-based cruise company that filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July.
The acquisition of Vantage Deluxe Travel’s assets included the line’s customer and prospect list and intellectual property, offering the company an opportunity to grow its North American customer base and expand its offering, said Hayley Peacock-Gower, chief marketing officer for Aurora Expeditions.
The brand plans to formally announce its plans in the coming months, although Gower said the new brand will look to provide land, river and ocean cruising in Europe, the Caribbean and Canada as well as potentially land offerings in Africa.
“The intention is to create a plethora of experiences for customers,” Gower said.
While the acquisition did not include ships, Aurora Expeditions’ third ship is under construction and is expected to be delivered in fall of 2025, which could be used for the new Vantage Explorations brand. The brand will also look for new channel opportunities or other acquisitions to support its river cruise offerings, Gower said.
As part of the settlement agreement, Pacific has agreed to offer Vantage’s previous customers credits to be used to pay up to 50% of an Aurora Expeditions cruise fare. Gower said guests will also be able to use those credits on Vantage Explorations vacations. Guests will have until 2028 to use the credits.
Vantage Explorations will focus directly on customers affected by the closure of Vantage Deluxe Travel and will not initially pay travel advisors a commission, Gower said. After that period, it is unclear whether the brand will pay advisors a commission. “In the future, as we expand our offering, we’ll see what we decide to do,” she said.
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