Friday, 8 October 2010

Hurtigruten heads '71 Degrees North'

Hurtigruten hopes the publicity surrounding new TV series 71 Degrees North will create more interest in its new 2011 Norway brochure.

The programme is set in Norway and sees 10 British celebrities travel from the south to the north whilst competing in extreme challenges.

“Norway is currently enjoying a high media profile with the ITV series,” said Kathryn Beadle, Hurtigruten sales and marketing director. “Agents have a real opportunity to capitalise on this, and I hope to see demand increase as the series climaxes, like we did with Joanna Lumley In The Land Of Northern Lights.”

It is the first time the line has produced a standalone Norway brochure, without its worldwide product, in four years, with most of the programme now bookable online.

Trips on offer include traditional daily voyages along the coast of Norway, as well as other itineraries such as a new whale watching adventure – the first time the operator has offered the chance to search for whales in the summer. Another voyage includes three days in a traditional fisherman’s hut.

The brochure comes six months after the preview was launched and sales are already up 50% year-on-year.

“Our preview brochure performed well and we expect our main brochure with its new itineraries to increase demand further,” Beadle said.

“We have worked hard to ensure everything is now bookable online to help agents, and we have created some new itineraries for them to promote,” she added.

The line also revealed that it would package pre and post-voyage options for customers to extend stays, to make it easier for agents.

Meanwhile, in a bid to encourage agents to learn more about Norway, Hurtigruten is running a competition for agents to win cuddly Roy the Reindeer teddies, in conjunction with 71 Degrees North.

Every Wednesday morning, the cruise line will post a question about the previous night’s episode at hurtigruten.co.uk/agents, which agents must answer to be in with a chance of winning.