Cruise & Ferry Review - Spring/Summer 2022

ROUNDTABLE Returning to the rivers Rebecca Barnes asks TUI River Cruises’ Chris Hackney, APT Luxury River Cruises & Tours’ Paul Melinis, CroisiEurope’s John Fair and A-ROSA’s Lucia Rowe for an update on the state of the river cruise industry River cruising is restarting in earnest as Covid-19-related restrictions begin to ease around the world and more countries open up to travellers. Here, executives from APT Luxury River Cruises & Tours, A-ROSA, CroisiEurope and TUI River Cruises share insights into how they are overcoming the biggest challenges they have faced over the pandemic, their plans to improve their environmental footprints, new itineraries and how they envisage the sector evolving in 2022 and beyond. What has been your biggest challenge over the past year? JF: Cancellations and managing customer needs and requests. Remote working and decreased hours were also a huge challenge, as well as lack of government support for the industry as a whole. However, our biggest challenges were to restart cruising safely and securely, and to rebuild customer confidence, all of which we have done successfully. CH: The biggest challenge has been launching our new river cruise line during the pandemic. We had to JOHN FAIR UK Sales Director, CroisiEurope CHRI S HACKNEY Managing Director of Cruise, TUI UK & Ireland PAUL MEL INI S Managing Director of UK & Europe, APT Luxury River Cruises & Tours LUCIA ROWE Managing Director, A-ROSA River Cruises The panel: 5 4 TUI Maya’s observatory lounge provides guests with panoramic views as they sail along the Danube River in Germany