Amawaterways' AmaCello river cruise ship

River cruises are a booming market and one that continues to grow. Agents who typically sell ocean cruises, however, and are looking to boost their river cruise business, need to be mindful of the significant differences between the two segments—both in how to qualify clients and how to sell to them.

Selling river cruises “requires more knowledge about the individual river cruise lines and their differences and similarities,” said John Gwane of Virginia Beach, Va.-based Cruises Inc. “For example, there are very few river cruise ships that have cabins for more than two people. They’re not as family or children-focused as ocean cruises.” He added that agents must understand the geography of river cruise routes, “as many potential customers are not very familiar with the regions river cruises may visit.”