Costa changes direction on direct-sell in the UK

Costa changes direction on direct-sell in the UK

MILAN — Costa Cruises has done an about-face, saying it will not take a direct-sell approach in the UK.

Earlier the cruise line said that a direct sales model was the best way to serve the needs of the UK market going forward. The move angered UK agents including Costa’s highest volume agency partner in the UK, Cruise Nation, which said it would fight the move.

Costa later issued a statement saying UK travel partners will continue to be able to sell Costa Cruises through the ‘Costa Click’ Internet booking engine, with commission.

Parent company Carnival Corp.’s net income for 2015 was US$2.1 billion, up from $1.5 billion in 2014. Revenues for the full year were $15.7 billion compared to $15.9 billion in 2014, a drop Carnival attributed to unfavourable impact from currency exchange rates of over $800 million.