Cruise Planners

12 02, 2024

Cruise Planners Awarded “Franchise Partner of the Year” by Royal Caribbean International

2024-02-12T18:18:25-05:00February 12th, 2024|Tags: , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — Cruise Planners the nation’s largest home-based franchise travel network has been awarded the prestigious title of Franchise Partner of the Year by Royal Caribbean International, who has been voted Best Cruise Line overall for 21 consecutive years by Travel Weekly.

The Franchise Partner of the Year award represents exceptional achievements in delivering high volume sales, unforgettable vacations to thousands of clients annually and impeccable reputation for high service levels, innovation, and continuous growth.

“We are committed to our long-standing partnership with Royal Caribbean, and receiving the esteemed Franchise Partner of the Year award is truly a source of joy and pride for us,” said Michelle Fee, founder and CEO of Cruise Planners. “This recognition is a testament to the hard work of our team, our network of franchise owners and agents, as well as the trust their clients place in us to provide exceptional service and travel experiences.”

The partnership between the two travel brand leaders, Cruise Planners and Royal Caribbean, has been strong for decades. In fact, Cruise Planners has been a top partner of Royal Caribbean since 2014 and was awarded the prestigious Chairman’s Award (2015, 2017-2019) and President’s Award (2014, 2016).

“These are extremely exciting times for the entire cruise industry – cruise lines and travel partners alike. The sky’s the limit at Royal Caribbean, and the strong performance we’ve seen is thanks in large part to our valued travel professionals and their incredible knowledge when it comes to matching their clients with the right vacation experience,” said Vicki Freed, senior vice president, Sales, Trade, Support and Service, Royal Caribbean International. “I’m very proud to honor these experts who consistently work with us and continue to see success with their businesses. As we dive into 2024 with the exciting launch of Icon of the Seas and then Utopia of the Seas in July 2024, as well as the next Icon Class ship, Star of the Seas, in 2025, we’re excited to reach new heights for the entire travel industry. Thanks for the support, and congratulations to Cruise Planners for winning our Franchise Partner of the Year Award.”

Company Background: Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and hands-on training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 2 years.

Franchise Business Review also ranked Cruise Planners #3 OVERALL on their list of Top 200 Franchises of 2022. Cruise Planners was recently featured in Entrepreneur as one of the top 30 franchise innovators in technology, has been consistently named as one of the Top Women-Owned Businesses by the South Florida Business Journal, is on the Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America, and was recognized as one of the Top Workplaces by the Sun Sentinel.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and travel agent training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 3 years and ranked in the top 20 on Travel Weekly’s 2022 Power List.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

28 12, 2023

Cruise Planners Unveils Cutting-Edge AI Technology Tool at Annual Convention

2023-12-28T17:20:25-05:00December 28th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — Cruise Planners, the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network, unveiled several new technology tools at their annual convention, CP World at the Broward Convention Center on November 27th.

One of the most exciting announcements was Maxx Intelligence which integrates advanced artificial intelligence to enhance the travel planning experience for both travel advisors and their clients. This innovative technology is designed to empower Cruise Planners’ network of travel advisors with the ease of enhanced content – all within their one-stop shop, proprietary CRM and booking tool, CP Maxx.

Key Features of Maxx Intelligence:

  • AI-Powered Recommendations: Maxx Intelligence harnesses the power of artificial intelligence to analyze vast amounts of travel data, providing advisors with recommendations tailored to each client’s preferences.
  • Improved content generation: Maxx Intelligence uses the power of AI to help advisors curate content within their tools to make creation of compelling stories a breeze.
  • Predictive Analysis: The tool utilizes predictive analysis to anticipate travel trends, allowing advisors to offer proactive recommendations and stay ahead of market demands/trends.
  • Personalization: Maxx Intelligence allows travel advisors to easily create marketing and newsletter content, blog pages, enhance cruise and vacation proposals, and so much more.

“Maxx Intelligence is the result of Cruise Planners innovative spirit and the drive to be the first to harness new technology for our network of advisors.  Instead of being fearful or “waiting to see what happens,” we encourage our advisors to embrace change and leverage technology to help them be even more successful,” said Michelle Fee, Founder and CEO of Cruise Planners. “We are thrilled to provide our travel advisors with this cutting-edge tool, which will elevate their ability to deliver unparalleled service and experiences to our treasured clients.”

For a list of all of the announcements from the Cruise Planners annual convention, click here.

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and travel agent training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 3 years and ranked in the top 20 on Travel Weekly’s 2022 Power List.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

4 12, 2023

Cruise Planners Makes Exciting Announcements during “CP World 2023: Limitless” Convention

2023-12-04T18:53:12-05:00December 4th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — Cruise Planners celebrated 30 years of success at its annual convention at the Broward Convention Center in South Florida. This year’s CP World theme was “Limitless,” showcasing that not even the sky is not the limit for Cruise Planners advisors. The convention took place from Nov. 27-29 followed by 2 nights onboard the new Celebrity Ascent.

The convention hosted more than 1,000 travel advisors from across the country and included supplier executives and representatives from all major cruise lines, tour companies, and all-inclusive resorts. Cruise Planners executives Michelle Fee, Founder and CEO; Theresa Scalzitti, COO; Brian Shultz, CIO and Scott Koepf, CSO shared a series of significant updates, encompassing this year’s record-breaking incredible financial performance, new proprietary tools and technology, marketing initiatives and 2024 in-person events. Cruise Planners also celebrated a major milestone of more than $1 Billion in sales in 2023 as well as a record year in both purchases and departures.

“I am inspired by our network of over 2,500 travel franchisees and our innovative home office team. Charting new courses, embracing change, and navigating uncharted waters have been the heart of our journey over the last 30 years,” said Michelle Fee, Founder and CEO of Cruise Planners.

Below is an overview of many of their exciting announcements made during their annual convention:

MAXX INTELLIGENCE: Maxx Intelligence is a new tool within CP Maxx that is designed to enhance content creation for agents through the power of AI and ChatGPT program. With Maxx Intelligence enabled, agents will gain access to a content generator that empowers them to effortlessly create new content by utilizing artificial intelligence. By inserting a prompt, agents can request artificial intelligence to generate responses that can be inserted into content and message fields to help create engaging ecards, blog pages, cruise sheets, lead forms, and much more.

MAXX CREATOR: Maxx Creator is a new tool within CP Maxx that enables agents to create visually appealing emails based on one of three layouts that are provided to them with each one including several elements to add to their emails such as banner images, messages, call to actions (links), and content blocks with or without images. With these elements, agents can shape their emails from simple emails to visual and content rich newsletter-style emails to send to their clients. With Maxx Creator, agents will also have the ability to create templates, reuse templates that have been created and shared within the franchise or utilize home office global templates to use when creating new emails as well as manage custom content such as custom banners, custom images, and attachments that have been uploaded.

EMAIL CAPTURE: Email capture in CP Maxx provides advisors with an efficient and convenient way to store, track, view and search client email communications in CP Maxx. Regardless of the email platform being used, advisors can add an easy to remember email address to the carbon copy (CC) field, and the email will automatically be saved in the “Sent Email” area of the email section of the client’s profile within CP Maxx and can also be saved to the client’s reservation for easy reference in the future.

CP MAXX VIDEO LIBRARY: The new Video Library tool in CP Maxx will give Cruise Planners advisors the ability to further customize and personalize their client experience. Using this tool, advisors may upload a video file or record their own video directly in CP Maxx via web browser to include within various other CP Maxx content tools and features. When recording a video, advisors will have the option to create a script to assist with the recording process and ensure a smooth recording experience. Furthermore, videos that are uploaded by advisors and the Cruise Planners Home Office team or recorded by advisors can be presented to clients during an interactive LivePlanner session.

WHERE2NEXT VIRTUAL SERIES: The award-winning Where2Next Virtual consumer series, launched during the pandemic, has been a success story ever since. In 2024, Cruise Planners will be enhancing this program to be an interactive experience for the clients to choose their own journey of learning and discovery for specific destinations, travel suppliers and more through various options of discovering information about various destinations and travel brands – all series will include a limited time exclusive offer.

LIVEPLANNER COLLECTIONS: LivePlanner Collections are curated assets sourced between Cruise Planners Home Office team and their supplier and tourism board partners. Comprised of links, images, videos, and documents, Collections bring groups of partner-driven assets directly to Cruise Planners advisors and their clients. Using the LivePlanner program, advisors may present Collections to their clients during an interactive LivePlanner vacation-planning session to gain a better understanding of their clients’ preferences for their next vacation.

LIVEPLANNER GROUP SESSIONS: Coming soon! The CP Maxx LivePlanner program will allow Cruise Planners advisors to complete interactive LivePlanner sessions with multiple clients at one time. This program enhancement will benefit advisors who would like to present vacation options to families, groups, or clients travelling together from different locations who would like to be part of the vacation-planning process. More details regarding LivePlanner will be available to our advisor network in 2024.

TRAVELTEK: Cruise Planners’ booking engine has integrated with a new Cruise API from Traveltek. This enables agents to get pricing, make live bookings, and retrieve cruise reservations. This partnership also provides significant advantages that will be available soon for the agents, such as making live bookings with more cruise lines than ever before and the ability to book into Cruisetours and group space.

2024 IN-PERSON EVENTS: (25+ Opportunities)

  • 2 Bootcamps
  • 3 Tech days
  • 3 Sales Academy
  • Land Symposium
  • Luxury Forum
  • 6 Star University Trainings
  • Annual Convention
  • 2 Elite Summits
  • Signature Travel Network Regional Events
  • Signature Travel Network Annual Conference
  • Signature Travel Network FAM Opportunities

This year’s convention introduced an exciting addition: the Destination Welcome Showcase, designed to illuminate numerous captivating destinations and countries represented by several Tourism Board partners. Advisors had the opportunity for one-on-one interactions to delve deeper into new countries, hotel properties, key tourist attractions, and distinctive selling propositions. Another exciting feature to the convention was the supplier tradeshow which marked Cruise Planners’ largest event ever, hosting over 170 partners, including cruise lines, tour operators, hotels, resorts, and destinations.

“Cruise Planners success is based on our five main pillars – Marketing, Technology, Training, Support and our People & Culture. Our annual convention is the culmination of dedication, hard work, perseverance and innovation and I could not be more proud to lead this amazing organization,” said Michelle Fee, Founder and CEO of Cruise Planners.

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and hands-on training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 2 years.

Franchise Business Review also ranked Cruise Planners #3 OVERALL on their list of Top 200 Franchises of 2022. Cruise Planners was recently featured in Entrepreneur as one of the top 30 franchise innovators in technology, has been consistently named as one of the Top Women-Owned Businesses by the South Florida Business Journal, is on the Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America, and was recognized as one of the Top Workplaces by the Sun Sentinel.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

28 11, 2023

Cruise Planners Celebrates 30 Years of Success and a Major Milestone at their Annual Convention

2023-11-28T18:11:42-05:00November 28th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — Cruise Planners kicks off their annual convention in Fort Lauderdale, Florida with over 1,000 advisors in attendance at the Broward Convention Center from November 26-29 and then sailing onboard the Celebrity Ascent November 29-31.

This year’s convention is centered around the theme “CP World: Limitless,” showcasing endless possibilities where not even the sky is the limit for their Cruise Planners travel advisors. Cruise Planners’ CP World serves as the embodiment of their five brand pillars: Marketing, Technology, Training, Support, and People & Culture. This concept encapsulates the essential elements that set Cruise Planners apart from all other hosts and franchise networks.

Cruise Planners celebrates a historic 30 years in business and achieved a major milestone of more than $1 Billion in sales in 2023 as well as a record year in both purchases and departures.

Cruise Planners’ record year culminated with overall growth in purchases in 2023 by an astounding 39% compared to last year; departures for 2023 are up 44% over 2022. Cruise Planners is looking ahead to another great year of sales in 2024 with future departures already up 38% compared to this same time last year.

This year, Cruise Planners earned numerous awards and recognitions. It was listed among South Florida Business Journal’s Top 100 Private Companies and Top 50 Fastest Growing Companies. Additionally, it received distinctions such as Franchise Business Review’s #1 Travel Franchise, Most Innovative Franchise award, and five years in a row as Top Franchise for Veterans. Cruise Planners was honored with four Magellan Awards for their outstanding marketing and technology, including the patent-pending LivePlanner tool, Luxury Marketing Campaign, Amenity Tracker tool, and the Where2Next Virtual Event Series. Notably, Cruise Planners also received the Chairman’s Award from Celebrity Cruises and was acknowledged as the Top Franchise Network by Scenic Group.

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and hands-on training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 2 years.

Franchise Business Review also ranked Cruise Planners #3 OVERALL on their list of Top 200 Franchises of 2022. Cruise Planners was recently featured in Entrepreneur as one of the top 30 franchise innovators in technology, has been consistently named as one of the Top Women-Owned Businesses by the South Florida Business Journal, is on the Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America, and was recognized as one of the Top Workplaces by the Sun Sentinel.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

14 11, 2023

South Florida Business Journal ranks Cruise Planners at #10 on their list of fastest growing companies

2023-11-14T19:53:30-05:00November 14th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — Cruise Planners, the largest home-based franchise agency with a network of more than 2,500 travel advisors is pleased to announce its inclusion in the South Florida Business Journal’s esteemed list of Top 100 Private Companies. The South Florida Business Journal’s Top 100 Private Companies list is a highly sought-after accolade, showcasing businesses that have made significant contributions to the South Florida economy through their outstanding performance and dedication to excellence. Cruise Planners is honored to be recognized among this elite group of thriving enterprises.

Michelle Fee, CEO and founder of Cruise Planners, expressed her enthusiasm for the achievement, saying, “Being named one of South Florida Business Journal’s Top 100 Private Companies is a testament to the dedication and hard work of our incredible team of franchise owners, advisors and our Home Office Team. We are proud to be part of the vibrant South Florida business community and will continue to push the boundaries of innovation in the travel industry.”

The South Florida Business Journal’s Top 100 Private Companies list highlights businesses from a variety of sectors that have excelled in financial growth, community involvement, and overall impact on the region. Cruise Planners’ inclusion in this prestigious list reaffirms its position as a major player in the travel industry, not only in South Florida but on a national scale.

This recognition is yet another milestone for Cruise Planners, coming on the heels of several other industry awards and accolades such as, Franchise Business Review’s Most Innovative Franchise, #1 in Category, ranked #3 on Franchise Business Review’s top 200 ranking, and South Florida Business Journal’s Fast 50 Award. The company remains dedicated to driving innovation and exceeding the expectations of its clients.

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and hands-on training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 2 years.

Franchise Business Review also ranked Cruise Planners #3 OVERALL on their list of Top 200 Franchises of 2022. Cruise Planners was recently featured in Entrepreneur as one of the top 30 franchise innovators in technology, has been consistently named as one of the Top Women-Owned Businesses by the South Florida Business Journal, is on the Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America, and was recognized as one of the Top Workplaces by the Sun Sentinel.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

30 08, 2023

South Florida Business Journal ranks Cruise Planners at #10 on their list of fastest growing companies

2023-08-30T10:13:47-04:00August 30th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — 2023 has been a year of incredible growth and Cruise Planners has joined the ranks of South Florida Business Journal’s Fast 50 at #10. This ranking recognizes the region’s fastest-growing private companies. Cruise Planners was selected based on its growth in the past three years. Cruise Planners saw annual sales growth from $545 million in 2022 to over $845 million in 2023, which also landed them on Travel Weekly’s Power List at #20. Cruise Planners has contributed to the growth of South Florida not only by employment efforts but more importantly by bringing thousands of tourists to South Florida through their network of 2,500 franchisees planning memorable vacations.

The company was honored by SFBJ on Aug. 24th at an awards program at Gulfstream Park – Sport of Kings in Hallandale Beach with COO Theresa Scalzitti, CIO Brian Shultz, VP of Technology Phill Guerra, Director of Operations Diana Riel, VP of Finance Nikki Hetzel, VP of Operations Jeff Sherota, Director of Destination Sales Laura Blanco, and Creative Resources Senior Manager Andrew Shultz on hand to accept the award on behalf of the company.

“Cruise Planners has persevered through some of the hardest years in travel. To accomplish this amazing growth and to be recognized by the South Florida Business Journal is a true honor,” said Michelle Fee, CEO and Founder of Cruise Planners. “This honor solidifies the hard work of our team and our incredible network of travel advisors throughout the U.S.”

To qualify for the honor, companies have to be privately held, be headquartered in the tri-county region, generate at least $1 million in annual revenue, and be in business at least three years. The ceremony featured a spirited reveal of the Top 25 companies with more than $25 million in annual revenue and the Top 25 with revenue under $25 million. Companies were ranked by revenue percentage growth from 2020 to 2022.

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing award-winning and innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and travel agent training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 3 years and ranked #20 on Travel Weekly’s 2023 Power List.

Franchise Business Review also ranked Cruise Planners #3 OVERALL on their list of Top 200 Franchises of 2022. Cruise Planners was recently featured in Entrepreneur as one of the top 30 franchise innovators in technology, has been consistently named as one of the Top Women-Owned Businesses by the South Florida Business Journal, is on the Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America, and was recognized as one of the Top Workplaces by the Sun Sentinel.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

30 06, 2023

Cruise Planners recognized again on Travel Weekly’s Prestigious 2023 Power List

2023-06-30T11:29:00-04:00June 30th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — On the heels of an incredibly productive and strong first half of the year, Cruise Planners has been rated #20 on Travel Weekly’s prestigious 2023 Power List, again solidifying their powerhouse status in the travel industry. Cruise Planners is the nation’s largest home-based travel advisor franchise network with over 2500 advisors. Cruise Planners was also recently awarded with the “Most Innovative Use of Technology: Products” award for their patent pending LivePlanner™ tool at the 2023 Franchise Innovation Awards.

Cruise Planners had an incredible rebound year in 2022 with $845 million in total sales, adding over $300 million to their previous year of sales. And 2023 departures are even stronger, pacing 45% ahead of same time last year and the company has already surpassed full year 2019 sales by 40% and full year 2022 sales by 30%.

The annual Power List ranking was unveiled in Pebble Beach, Ca. at this year’s Travel Weekly Leadership Forum where Cruise Planners CEO Michelle Fee, COO Theresa Scalzitti and CSO Scott Koepf attended. Travel Weekly’s Power List measures full-year travel sales for the previous year. Cruise Planners debuted on the prestigious Power List 10 years ago with a ranking of #44 and has reached #20 in less than 10 years.

“To be recognized on this list for over a decade is a feat in itself, but to see our sales from 2021 to 2022 increase an additional $300 million in just one year is phenomenal,” said Michelle Fee, CEO and founder of Cruise Planners. “It is a testament to the perseverance and expertise of our advisor network, our spirit of continuous innovation and support, as well as our strong relationships with our supplier partners that we are seeing such a positive upward trajectory.”

For the full profile, you can click here.

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing award-winning and innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and travel agent training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 3 years and ranked #20 on Travel Weekly’s 2023 Power List.

Franchise Business Review also ranked Cruise Planners #3 OVERALL on their list of Top 200 Franchises of 2022. Cruise Planners was recently featured in Entrepreneur as one of the top 30 franchise innovators in technology, has been consistently named as one of the Top Women-Owned Businesses by the South Florida Business Journal, is on the Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America, and was recognized as one of the Top Workplaces by the Sun Sentinel.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

26 06, 2023

Cruise Planners recognized at the 5th Annual Franchise Innovation Awards for Patent Pending LivePlanner™ Tool

2023-06-26T13:35:15-04:00June 26th, 2023|Tags: , , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — Cruise Planners continues to pave the way in the field of technology and was recognized at the 5th annual Franchise Innovation Awards in Atlanta, GA during the Franchise Customer Experience Conference. The company took home the coveted “Most Innovative Use of Technology: Products” award for their patent pending LivePlanner™ tool that they unveiled in November 2022 at their annual convention. The goal of the awards is to identify and recognize the franchisors creating and implementing the most original and successful innovative strategies and tactics to build their brand.

“It is an incredible honor to be recognized for the undisputed talent of our technology team,” said Michelle Fee, CEO & founder of Cruise Planners. “LivePlanner™ is a gamechanger and will help our advisors deliver the best experience they can for their clients and we’ve only seen the beginning.”

An independent jury of judges evaluated the innovation and objective of each of the more than 150 entrants, and we’re proud to say that we were one of the 22 recognized. Franchise innovators, game-changers, and disruptors competed in four categories: Marketing & Branding, Products & Services, Operations, and Human Resources.

Twenty-two winners were chosen from among the four categories. Each winner will be profiled in Franchise Update magazine.

Cruise Planners’ LivePlanner™ is the first interactive vacation planning tool of its kind within the travel industry. Hosted within Cruise Planners’ proprietary business management software, CP Maxx, LivePlanner™ gives franchises the opportunity to complete a live walkthrough of vacation options with their clients. These options include cruise itineraries with all major cruise lines, all-inclusive resorts, custom vacation packages, and more. With Cruise Planners advanced technology, there will be even more travel options available to advisors as the program evolves.

  • Cruise Planners agents have had thousands of sessions since launching in 2022
  • Average sale is 26% higher than a traditional sale without the use of LivePlanner™
  • The average close rate is above 45%

“I’m immensely proud of our team for consistently creating tools and applications that make a tangible difference for our advisors,” said Brian Shultz, CIO. “We always want to be one step ahead of their needs and continuously innovate to have more great things coming down the pike for them, so stay tuned.”

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing award-winning and innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and travel agent training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 3 years and ranked #18 on Travel Weekly’s 2022 Power List.

Franchise Business Review also ranked Cruise Planners #3 OVERALL on their list of Top 200 Franchises of 2022. Cruise Planners was recently featured in Entrepreneur as one of the top 30 franchise innovators in technology, has been consistently named as one of the Top Women-Owned Businesses by the South Florida Business Journal, is on the Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America, and was recognized as one of the Top Workplaces by the Sun Sentinel.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

29 11, 2022

Cruise Planners launches patent-pending interactive tool “LivePlanner”

2022-11-29T09:32:28-05:00November 29th, 2022|Tags: , , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — With an unwavering commitment to innovation, Cruise Planners launched a new interactive product called “LivePlanner” during its annual Convention. This product allows Cruise Planners agents to showcase vacation options with imagery, videos, and more to help their clients plan the perfect vacation whether it’s a cruise, all-inclusive resort, and FIT Packaged trip.   All of it is done live and in real-time, making this an innovative technology for the travel industry and is patent-pending.

Clients can use either a laptop or desktop device creating a live session experience between themselves and their travel advisor and plan a vacation in real-time. This revolutionary software will have the capability for clients and agents to be on video and screenshare, further contributing to the interactive experience. All of this without needing to install any special software.

“We have been diligently developing this tool by using focus groups made up of team members and experienced advisors to ensure it’s both easy to use and to fine-tune important details,” said Brian Shultz, Chief Information Officer. “Our advisors can now add this to their arsenal of proprietary tools to help them close more sales and showcase their expertise in travel.”

New clients can access this feature and request a consultation from the agent’s website while existing clients can schedule their own sessions via their myTrips account on the agent website. Once a client makes a request for a LivePlanner session, they’ll be able to:

  • View their upcoming consultation dates scheduled
  • View all past consultations with the option to view a session “summary” which outlines the information shared during the consultation

During the session, clients may utilize the built in video feature if they wish to share their camera. They can also “favorite” or “unfavorite” items shared during the session by their agent, which helps the agent narrow down the search toward the perfect vacation. Any items that are favorited will be captured in their CP Maxx client profile and once the consultation has ended, clients will be sent to the “Session Summary” screen. There they can view any attachments sent by the agent during the consultation and share any and all trips with others via email.

“LivePlanner will change the game on the consultation aspect of working with clients to plan travel,”  said Michelle Fee, CEO and founder of Cruise Planners. “We are excited to create a tool that will help advisors better understand what excites their clients about a vacation and helps clients understand more about the experiences and trip options, allowing agents to interactively consult with clients located anywhere in the world. Additionally, LivePlanner allows advisors to personalize a unique experience for their customers. We’re proud to offer this industry-first tool to our Cruise Planners advisors.”

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and hands-on training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 2 years.

Franchise Business Review also ranked Cruise Planners #3 OVERALL on their list of Top 200 Franchises of 2022. Cruise Planners was recently featured in Entrepreneur as one of the top 30 franchise innovators in technology, has been consistently named as one of the Top Women-Owned Businesses by the South Florida Business Journal, is on the Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America, and was recognized as one of the Top Workplaces by the Sun Sentinel.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.

25 11, 2022

Cruise Planners Chief Sales Officer, Theresa Scalzitti officially names Atlas Ocean Voyages’ “World Traveller” in Chile

2022-11-25T09:03:05-05:00November 25th, 2022|Tags: , , , , |

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — Cruise Planners Chief Sales Officer, Theresa Scalzitti, celebrated the naming of Atlas Ocean Voyages’ World Traveller as its godmother in the fjords of Beagle Channel’s Glacier Alley in Chile this past weekend. The dual naming ceremony included the World Navigator, which has been in service since last year but was never formally named. Adventurer Karen Lundgren serves as the godmother of the World Navigator.

Scalzitti, Cruise Planners chief sales officer, has spent the majority of her nearly 30-year career in the cruise and travel industry, championing travel advisors.

“This was a surreal moment for me. To be asked to be the godmother of Atlas Ocean Voyages’ new ship World Traveller is a dream come true,” said Scalzitti. “Thank you Atlas for this once-in-a-lifetime honor.”

VIP guests at the dual naming ceremonies included travel advisors, shareholders, media and dignitaries from Argentina and Chile. World Traveller was named Nov. 19, followed by Zodiac sightseeing of Pia Glacier. In the evening the portraits of the godmothers were unveiled at a gala welcome reception prior to dinner. The naming festivities for World Navigator took place on Nov. 20, preceded by a celebratory luncheon on that vessel.

“Both yacht-style vessels specialize in expeditions to some of nature’s most spectacular destinations,” said James Rodriguez, Atlas’ president and CEO. “What a historic weekend for Atlas. It was inspiring to name these two spectacular ships surrounded by majestic glaciers.”

Both expedition ships are Polar Category C- and Ice Class 1B-certified and cater to global travelers with a passion for exploring both iconic and off-the-beaten-path destinations. The intimate vessels offer every five-star comfort, from an all-inclusive onboard experience and luxurious accommodations to in-depth excursions and customized private tours for a truly personalized voyage.

With only 100 suites, guests enjoy nearly a 1:1 guest-to-staff ratio and a special camaraderie and bond with their fellow explorers. This allows discerning travelers to immerse themselves in unique and awe-inspiring moments in remote and captivating destinations, from the Arctic to Antarctica, as well as discover destinations in Northern Europe, the Mediterranean, and the Americas.

About Cruise Planners

Cruise Planners was founded in 1994 and is the nation’s largest home-based travel agent franchise network. As a leader in the travel franchise industry, Cruise Planners positions a nation-wide network of 2,500 franchise owners for success by providing innovative marketing programs, proprietary and cutting-edge booking and technology tools, as well as professional development and hands-on training with the industry’s top executives. The company continues to be an industry leader and was named the No.1 travel franchise by Entrepreneur magazine for 18 consecutive years and awarded by Franchise Business Review as “Best-In-Category” for 2 years.

Franchise Business Review also ranked Cruise Planners #3 OVERALL on their list of Top 200 Franchises of 2022. Cruise Planners was recently featured in Entrepreneur as one of the top 30 franchise innovators in technology, has been consistently named as one of the Top Women-Owned Businesses by the South Florida Business Journal, is on the Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America, and was recognized as one of the Top Workplaces by the Sun Sentinel.

Visit our website, www.cruiseplanners.com, for more information or to view the complete list of awards and honors. For those interested in becoming a franchise owner, please visit https://www.cruiseplannersfranchise.com/.