Posted by: cruise2 | 19 April, 2014

The Introduction of Hagenisms


A year ago, we had the US edition of Travel Weekly to thank for identifying a new introduction to the lexicon of cruising with the new word Hagenism. To start with, after an interview with Torstein Hagen, head of Viking Cruises, Travel Weekly reported:

“He’s equally clear about people he is not interested in: ‘We have no need whatsoever to say we want some younger people onboard. If you have teenagers, then you should go somewhere else. We don’t encourage [inter] generational travel. We market to North Americans, Brits, Australians. Nothing else. No Turks, no Brazilians. They may sneak on a person from Hong Kong or whatever, but the language is English, and it’s the ambience of these types of people [that we strive for].’”

To this, the article added “some Hagenisms uttered during his presentation” on River Cruising:
“I consider ourselves to be a professional company. That’s what differentiates us from most of the others in the river cruise industry.”

– “A suite isn’t a large room. A suite is two rooms or more. And we’re very, very consistent in our use of that. One of our competitors says, ‘We have all-suite ships.’ They have no-suite ships.”

– “We don’t have a gym. When you look at these so-called gyms in the basements of these ships, they are just inferior things to what people are used to at home. If people want a spa, we will bring them to the Four Seasons in Budapest when we get there.”

Viking Star - Courtesy of Viking Cruises

Viking Star – Courtesy of Viking Cruises

– “Along the river, we are the employer of choice. We have been recruiting, and people stand in line from the ocean cruise lines to join us.”
– “We generate the demand [for river cruises]. So, of course, what happens now — I’m a little bit annoyed — is that when we are full, someone else will pick up some of the crumbs. But let them. We don’t intend to leave a lot of crumbs for our competitors, but you should leave some.” (When a journalist asked why, he replied: “They’re nice guys. We’re good friends.”)

And on Ocean Cruising (Viking is building four: option six new 930-berth ocean cruise ships – see image aside):
– The present oceangoing cruise line model “is to get them onboard at any price and then fleece them.”

– “Obviously, to be on a bus is not nice. And to be on a 3,000-passenger ship is not nice. It’s not nice under the best of circumstances, and under the worst, bad.”

– “We don’t have to put in a specialty dining restaurant. I was on one of our competitors once, and they had specialty dining. It was a two-week cruise; I lasted four days. But I saw how it worked. On a two-week cruise, you could go once or twice, and the rest of the time you had to eat in the grub store.”

Kevin Griffin is managing director of specialist cruise agency The Cruise People Ltd in London, England.

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