Del Rio: ‘Better Product and Better Earnings on All Three Brands’

“One of the advantages of running a small cruise line, like we do, with just 25 ships, is that we can still share ideas and implement the best practices in a very simplistic, non-bureaucratic manner,” said Frank del Rio, president and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH), in a press conference at China Cruise Shipping.

NCLH includes Norwegian Cruise Line, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Oceania Cruises.

“We do it every day and that is why each of our brands is the highest yielding in their respective categories. Even though we are the smallest of the three public cruise companies our brands generate more EBITDA per bed than the other two companies,” said del Rio.

“That’s a testament to two things. One, how efficient the team runs the operations and two, that customers are willing to pay a premium to come on our ships versus the competitors. And, the only reason anybody would pay a premium to come on our ships versus someone else’s is because it’s a better product.”

In China, del Rio said the business plan was similar to other markets, sail with full ships at the highest prices possible.

“We believe our product justifies a premium price,” he noted.

David Herrera, president of NCLH China, added that travel partners in China felt the brand could justify a higher price.

“We are in a position where we can both make money together,” said Herrera.

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