Explora Journeys, a South African based company, is excited to announce that it has joined the Virtuoso Cruise Line as the first cruise line in the South African market, joining the likes of Crystal Cruises, Seabourn Cruises, and Silversea Cruises. Explora Journeys is a leading tour operator for South Africa and is the first travel company to operate the newest cruise ships in the South African market. They also offer a variety of tour and adventure travel services in Southern Africa.

Explora Journeys is the first cruise line to choose Virtuoso for its online reservations systems. Explora Journeys has been a Front Runner Member for over two years, and will be the first charter member of Virtuoso’.  This gives them the ability to use Virtuoso’ s search and discovery features, which can help reduce the number of clicks and call-backs needed by cruise lines, and also allows Explora Journeys to integrate the Virtuoso search engine into their website and mobile applications.

Explora Journeys, which operates the Ocean Navigator cruise line, has announced that they are joining with Virtuoso Cruises as the first to join the Virtuoso Travel Network, which will see the two companies working together to offer cruises to Hawaii, the South Pacific, Australia and South Africa. The partnership, which was first announced in November 2016, is designed to accelerate the growth of the Ocean Navigator brand and provide a new revenue stream for the guest experience.

Explora Journeys has joined Virtuoso’s travel partner roster. The first of four new ships will be launched in 2023, and the cruise line is the first to be asked to join Virtuoso’s Preview program.

“We are thrilled to announce Explora Journeys as our first Preview cruise line,” said Virtuoso chairman and CEO Matthew D. Upchurch. “What Explora is doing in terms of ethical tourism is in line with our own philosophy of travel as a positive force. And, by launching with such an innovative pay plan, they demonstrate their commitment to travel advisors. Welcoming Explora into the Virtuoso network ahead to the launch of their first ship demonstrates our confidence in the business, its leadership, and its product.”


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Explora Journeys benefits from Virtuoso advisers’ advice and a head start on reservations as part of Preview.

Michael Ungerer, CEO of Explora Journeys, stated, “We are extremely honored and thrilled by the chance to collaborate with Virtuoso, which is a testimony to our business approach.” “Building a brand that would revolutionize the cruise experience has long been a goal of our Chairman Pierfrancesco Vago, his wife Alexa, and the Aponte family, and I am delighted that they have asked me to develop and manage this new luxury travel company. We’ve built a customer-centric brand that will surpass the expectations of discerning luxury travelers seeking sustainable and ethical travel, thanks to a substantial investment in research that includes luxury roundtables, surveys, and focus groups. As a result, we feel very fortunate to be embarking on this adventure with Virtuoso, and on behalf of the whole Explora Journeys team, we look forward to a long-term strategic relationship that is mutually profitable and respected.”

Explora Journeys not only provides genuine relationships for its passengers, but it also takes a long-term strategy, including the most cutting-edge environmental technology and planning for future upgrades. All-inclusive cruises visit cities like Saint Tropez, France, and Reykjavik, Iceland, as well as hidden treasures like Kastellorizo, a Greek island; Bozcaada, a Turkish island; and the Lofoten Islands, located above the Arctic Circle in the Norwegian Sea.

“We are completely dedicated to Virtuoso as a partner. “The travel advisor community has always been at the heart of everything we do, and they will continue to be so in the future,” said Chris Austin, Explora Journeys’ Chief Sales Officer. “We have a long-standing connection with Virtuoso, and our new collaboration gives all worldwide Virtuoso member agencies a compelling new brand, beautiful ships and guest experiences built with purpose, and a portfolio of commercial policies to make doing business with us enjoyable. We are really excited to engage with Virtuoso members in a proactive manner for many years to come.”

The cruise industry is tough to break into, as it’s dominated by the big cruise lines. A tiny, new cruise line has recently entered the market and is ready to challenge the big cruise lines like Carnival and Royal Caribbean for the title of most popular cruise line of the world. The new cruise line is called Explora Journeys, and it has already signed up a number of cruise partners, including Virtuoso.. Read more about explora i and let us know what you think.

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