Jetline Cruises has launched a new white label affiliate service and aimed at retail partners looking for a low-cost entry into the sector.
The Essex-based retailer claims it makes an average of £400-£500 profit on each booking, and says affiliates will receive 25-30%. The scheme is already in use by The Independent newspaper.
Partners will be given access to a back office system so they can monitor enquiries, turnover and profits and keep track of how effective email alerts, web enquiries and other routes to market are.
The firm is looking for partners both within and outside of the travel industry and claims to offer affiliates a completely transparent system.
Ian Gilder, head of cruise of Jetline Cruises, said despite the recent growth in the cruise industry and the small proportion of cruises sold direct by operators it is still a costly sector to enter.
“I have been pretty vociferous over recent years about how cruise is not paved with gold,” he said. “I want to work with people who have either got a lot of web traffic or do email or direct marketing.
“We can bring something else to the party at low cost which they can earn on. What makes us different is the way we can track sales and enquiries through our reporting system.”
Gilder said affiliates only need to add one piece of code to their website and agree terms and conditions to get up and running, and that the process can be completed within hours of agreeing terms.
Although the cruise industry can be lucrative for agents, with commissions of around 15% plus, discounting is rife and most survive on single-digit margins.
Gilder said Jetline is happy to sell mainstream product which offers lower margins, but also specialises in creating unique packages and deals with higher earning potential.
He said the firm’s best-selling offer to date is a 14-night Hawaii cruise with a three-night stopover in Las Vegas that retails for £1,299 per person.
Jetline Cruises was named Travelzoo’s European leading provider of cruise deals at the latter’s fifth birthday celebrations in London earlier this year.
“In cruise you don’t need to go up against the discount merchants. You can sell it on quality, on perceived value, on something a little bit different,” Gilder said.
“We want to work with partners who want to work with us. It’s not a one way street. We are trying to get cruise in front of people who have got databases this will work with because our stuff is unique and different.
“We do the bog standard 10% off a P&O Cruise, but the affiliate isn’t going to earn a lot on that. I’m going to give them something a little bit different to work with.”