Cruise & Ferry Review - Autumn/Winter 2020

1 0 5 Marine Atlantic’s ferries are gradually resuming service in eastern Canada in an economic downturn. For example, Interislander had a good year during the 2008 global financial crisis. What has your company done to inspire passenger confidence? DB : Since early March, we’ve been communicating with employees and customers about the changes in operating processes, health and safety protocols, and service adjustments through multiple channels. It’s more important than ever that our customers see that we’re delivering on these promises and I’m proud to say that their feedback has been positive. FC : Safety and clear customer communication are our top priorities. We therefore highlight our procedures and their correlation with customer safety throughout our business on a daily basis. This allowed us to react quickly as the Covid-19 situation developed and introduce new procedures to keep customers safe. JC : We’ve launched a new ‘Together and protected’ campaign, which outlines the 12 health and safety measures Brittany Ferries has implemented on top of those required by law in the countries we sail to. Some of these measures include operating ships at 50 per cent capacity, mandating masks, staggering embarkation and disembarkation, using virucidal cleaning products, circulating fresh air across the ferries, and encouraging customers to book cabins to reduce onboard interactions. MK : We’re strictly adhering to all prescribed protection measures. We made sure to define all the necessary procedures in time so we could efficiently protect each passenger and crew member. It’s challenging to impose new rules but still offer an enjoyable experience, but our sales staff and ship crew play a key role in achieving this. WR : Safety is the first thing we think about each day, and it’s absolutely essential to delivering a great customer experience. We’re the original ferry operator in the Cook Strait, with more than 50 years of experience. Our rapid response and hygiene process resulted in us remaining Covid-19 free, while enabling essential travel. How will you adapt your marketing messaging to broaden your appeal? DB : We’re in the early stages of reopening in eastern Canada, so we’re focused on informing customers about what we’re doing to keep them safe. As restrictions are relaxed, we’ll return to more direct communications about the service and promoting the key benefits of ferry travel. FC : While safety has always been a key part of our overall brand promise, we’ve developed our own ‘Sail Safe’ theme to highlight our key Covid-19 responses in an easily digestible format for any prospective customers. With more consumers in the market for UK holidays, we’re also working closely with the Isle of Wight’s destination marketing organisation to develop and share key messages that will appeal to new audiences. JC : It’s critical that we communicate to our passengers exactly what health and