Delivering the transformative power of travel

Rebecca Gibson asks Crystal Morgan how Princess Cruises creates cruise itineraries that exceed guest expectations

Delivering the transformative power of travel
Morgan aims to deliver once-in-a-lifetime experiences for passengers in her role at Princess Cruises

Early in her cruise career, Crystal Morgan took a flightseeing tour over Alaska’s Juneau Icefield and it transformed her perspective on travel and the importance of exploring the world. 

“I was humbled by the expanse and beauty of the icefield,” she says. “To make the experience even better, we landed on a glacier and played with sled dogs – I knew then I wanted to stay in the industry to see more of the world. Since then, I’ve been very fortunate to travel to many destinations and have many unique experiences – from snorkelling in Australia to touring palaces in St Petersburg, Russia.”

Today, Morgan aims to deliver these types of memorable and once-in-a-lifetime experiences for others in her role as director of deployment and itinerary planning at Princess Cruises.

“We design itineraries with a balance of onshore experiences and sea days for guests to enjoy and explore the brand’s ships,” she says. “Guests choose their cruises based on the sum of all the destinations and excursions included in the itinerary, so we include a variety of different countries, cultures and experiences that complement one another to make the perfect vacation.”

Choosing the right ports and destinations can be challenging, but Princess aims to visit those that uphold its brand values. “Our top priority is the safety of our guests, so first and foremost, we look for ports and destinations that comply with required safety and security standards,” Morgan explains. “In addition, we look for destinations that can provide inclusive experiences and authentic products for all our guests, as well as those that care for their local communities. To achieve this, we collaborate closely with service providers, agencies and regional associations, sharing ideas, resolving issues and exploring how we can help our guests truly connect with the destinations.”

Morgan and her team also track travel trends to ensure they create itineraries that meet, and exceed, guest expectations.

“Cruises with calls at remote destinations – such as French Polynesia, Greenland or Antarctica – always impress our guests,” she says. “We also see demand for longer cruise itineraries, such as those from Australia and North America, as well as voyages to destinations in Northern Europe, particularly Iceland and Norway. Cruises close to North America are also becoming popular as many of our guests are again looking forward to cruising again.”

This article was first published in the 2020 issue of Cruise & Ferry Itinerary Planning. All information was correct at the time of printing, but may since have changed.

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Rebecca Gibson
By Rebecca Gibson
05 February 2021

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