MSC is powered in Latin America
The company has a strong commitment to the cruise industry in the region. The offer of 4 boats among which is the recently opened, the MSC Seaview and the bet of the MSC Fantasia in Buenos Aires, this proves it
To know the current status of MSC Cruises, we interviewed Javier Massignani - Executive Director of the firm. We share each of your answers below.
What are the news for the 2019-2020 season?
Before the 2019/2020 season, we have great news of our next cruise season 2018/2019. For the 2018/2019 season our goal is to expand the offer of cruises and destinations so that the local public has the opportunity to live an MSC cruise. A clear example of this commitment is to bring the MSC Fantasia, one of the mega ships of the fleet to Buenos Aires. The MSC Fantasia, has the MSC Yacht Club, which will be the first time it will be available to Argentine guests. This is a world of unique pleasures to fully discover the senses in an intimate and selective environment. This ship will depart for the first time with Argentine guests to the Northeast of Brazil, with 3 scheduled departures of 11 and 14 nights, visiting Rio de Janeiro, Salvador de Bahia, Cabo Frio, Ilhéus, Ilhabela and Punta del Este.
We also have the return of the MSC Orchestra. The boat, already known by the local public, will make 15 departures from the Port of Buenos Aires of 8, 9 and 10 nights from November to March. The first trip from Buenos Aires will depart on 26/11/18 to Brazil and Uruguay, calling at the ports of Rio de Janeiro, Ilhabela, Búzios and Punta del Este in Uruguay.
In addition, the MSC Poesia, will make 14 departures during its season in South America, departing from Santos to Buenos Aires, Montevideo and Punta del Este. On the other hand, the MSC Seaview, the second of two identical ships of the Seaside generation -which was baptized in June of this year- will make 21 departures with itineraries of 3, 4, 6 and 7 nights respectively to the Northeast of Brazil. .
For the next season 2019/2020, the offer is maintained in a similar way to this season that will soon begin.
This year at a press conference, he said that MSC Cruceros, in South America, is positioned as the first company in the market. What do you think this positioning has to do with?
In South America, MSC Cruises is positioned as the first Company in the market. This achievement is the result of our teamwork and commitment to our guests. In recent years, MSC initiated an unprecedented investment process in the industry of € 10.5 billion to build 12 ships, which will expand our fleet to 24 ultra-modern ships in 2026, "and clarified," the occupation of our ships has grown 800% since 2003 and we have moved from transporting 127 thousand guests to 1.8 million in 2016 and we aspire to reach 4.8 million guests in 2026.
The Company has a strong commitment to the cruise industry in the country and in the region. The offer of 4 boats among which is the recently opened, the MSC Seaview and the bet of the MSC Fantasia in Buenos Aires, proves it.
South America is the second market in importance for MSC Cruises. We are leaders and our objective is to continue growing on offer in the coming years with new ships and destinations.
The Argentine market is a prominent destination in our strategic plan, which is why we welcome the good response of the local public to our proposals for vacations over the sea. Worldwide, MSC Cruises is concerned with creating new experiences of entertainment, excellent gastronomy and relaxation, together with novel and stunning destinations, to create unforgettable moments.
What are the priority markets within the region? And the potentials?
With three ships, Brazil leads the offer in South America, followed by Argentina, Uruguay and Chile. From MSC Cruises we always seek to work alongside our travel agents because they are our main marketing channels. All the time we offer and update the technological tools necessary to develop the business and agreements with the most important operators in the country to bring the product to the consumer with proposals for cruises from Buenos Aires to Brazil, Northeast Brazil from Rio de Janeiro and Santos , and other international cruises.
Every year they offer a series of promotions aimed at encouraging sales. Which ones will be valid next season?
Every year we propose different promotions so that our guests always have an opportunity according to their expectations and the importance of pre-sale. MSC Cruises has many promotions "2x1 + Upgrade".
The cruise has many competitive advantages and we rely on these advantages to work our promotional campaigns. We work in a planned and strategic way in the design and performance of our boats, always thinking about the experience of our guests.
How is the company's relationship with the OTAs? And with the traditional travel agencies?
Travel agencies are our main distribution channel and we care about training them and having all the information available through the systems. We have a well atomized market which allows us a total coverage throughout the country. OTAs today are still a minor part of the sale as they concentrate a very low share. It is a channel that is still potential but in development and that will surely bring excellent results in the future.
How do Fly & Cruise packages work nowadays?
The Fly & Cruise packages are proposed by MSC Cruises to provide greater enjoyment and comfort to their guests. These packages include air, cruise travel, hotel accommodation and transfers, depending on the chosen departures and with tempting prices. The destinations are Dubai and Abu Dhabi (MSC Splendida); Dubai, Abu Dhabi and India (MSC Lirica); Cuba (MSC Armonia and MSC Opera).
The first of the options are Dubai and Abu Dhabi, aboard the MSC Splendida for the departure of 13/12/2018. This 9-night itinerary includes flights and a hotel night in Dubai and will be visiting the cities of Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sir Bani Yas, Muscat, Khasab and returning to Dubai.
You can also select the package Dubai, Abu Dhabi and India, aboard the MSC Lirica on a 13-night cruise, with included flights from Buenos Aires. On this occasion, the ports that the ship calls are Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Muscat, New Mangalore, Goa, Mumbai and Khasab.
The second proposal is Cuba. In this case, it includes air, 10 nights aboard the MSC Armonia and 3 nights in the hotel all inclusive in Varadero for the departure of 6/16/18. The itinerary includes cities such as Havana, Belize, Isla de Roatán, Costa Maya, Cozumel with return to Havana.
How do you perceive the current situation in the port of Buenos Aires?
The port has many challenges ahead. Much progress has been made in terms of costs but there is still work to be done to achieve even greater competitiveness compared to other ports in the world. At the infrastructure level here if we have much to do since we need a port with a better infrastructure adapted to larger ships, 300mts, to improve the current operation.
¿Cómo analiza la actualidad del segmento de cruceros? ¿Cómo evalúa la evolución de esta industria?
La industria de cruceros está pasando por un momento muy importante en su evolución. Desde la construcción de barcos de 100k toneladas pasamos a barcos de más de 260k toneladas. Esto significa, que antes había una capacidad para 3.000 huéspedes y ahora, con la nueva generación de barcos, aumenta a 6.000 con mayor oferta y variedad de entretenimiento.
Actualmente, se busca el concepto Smart Ship, como es el caso del MSC Meraviglia, el MSC Seside o el MSC Seaview. Es poner en servicio una mayor tecnología que permita a los huéspedes relacionarse e interactuar.