Cruise & Ferry Itinerary Planning 2024

75 What is it that entices travellers to visit destinations in the Baltic Sea region? This question is at the heart of the new Cruise Baltic marketing narrative that encourages cruise lines and their guests to “uncover the secrets of Northern Europe”. The campaign showcases the rich and varied histories, cultures, cuisines and attractions in the more than 30 cruise ports and destinations in the Cruise Baltic network. “Cruise guests may be hesitant to visit the Baltic Sea due to the geopolitical situation, so we’ve launched a new narrative to spark their curiosity, show them the secrets of our region and encourage them to visit us more frequently,” says Louise Røssell, senior manager of Cruise Baltic. According to Røssell, the new narrative plays an “integral role” in Cruise Baltic’s 2023-2026 Responsible Cruising strategy, which was developed together with four of its partners who represent different sized ports and destinations. The strategy outlines three main goals: re-establish Baltic Sea cruising beyond pre-pandemic levels, intensify internal partner commitments, and increase the value and impact of its network through knowledge sharing and partnerships. “Our vision is for the Baltic Sea region to be the obvious choice for responsible cruising,” says Røssell. “The strategy will empower us as a network to adapt to unforeseen circumstances and enhance internal and external collaboration.” To achieve such ambitious objectives, Cruise Baltic will strengthen cooperation between its port and destination partners. “Baltic Sea cruises include calls at several destinations, so we must be united to deliver a consistently high-quality product across the region,” says Røssell, adding that Cruise Baltic also plans to participate in industry-wide dialogues with external stakeholders. “We have a higher chance of getting our messages across and reaching our goals if the industry works together. For example, we’d like to be more involved in the green agenda.” Røssell cites both the shore power overview and the Itinerary Planner tool on as key examples of existing initiatives borne out of successful cross-industry collaboration. “The shore power overview was created in alignment with other cruise organisations to help cruise lines easily identify the current and future availability of shoreside electricity in ports,” she says. “Meanwhile, our Itinerary Planner was co-developed with Cruise Norway to help cruise brands check the availability of berths in Baltic Sea and Norwegian ports on specific dates. We’re updating the system to further improve the Baltic cruise itinerary planning process.” ASSOCIATION HIGHLIGHTS: INTERVIEW A new narrative Cruise Baltic’s Louise Røssell tells Rebecca Gibson why increased collaboration and a new strategy will help the Baltic Sea region become synonymous with responsible cruising “ Our vision is for the Baltic Sea region to be the obvious choice for responsible cruising” Photo: Werner Nystrand