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Old 06-07-2010, 10:19 AM
Judy Patsch Judy Patsch is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Rock Island, Illinois mile 480 UMR
Posts: 3,862
Default Marketing yes!

You've hit on several key points Bob. For anyone who has ever taken a Caribbean cruise: in what country was your ship registered? It sure wasn't the US. And how many of the crew were American or who spoke fluent English(total crew, not just the ones who dealt directly with passengers)?
Betty still had the tramp excursion boat hustle in her when she came to the DQ and she knew how to reach people - whether to ride or to support the exemption fight. The Greene Line boats were geared to the middle class, but took wealthier without a problem. The mega-companies which owned the QUEENS in the last couple of decades geared their 'product' to the upper incomes, stressing the infamous bathrobes, plush bedding, etc, rather than the cruising Americana aspects. In aiming at that higher income, they had no qualms in jacking the prices up, knowing they would be affordable to their target population. Unfortunately, they wiped out their loyal base of lower income passengers - you never could be poor to ride a Greene Line boat, but you didn't have to be in the top income bracket. DQ Company at one time had the highest percentage of repeat passengers of all cruise lines -what a great base to start a season with. But this was perceived as a negative by our recent ownerships. So Americans think of cruises in China or Europe as more exotic than one in the US? How about turning the tables? A person in China or Germany might think an American river cruise would be more exotic than one in their own country, no? And guess where the leisure spending money is now? If the NATCHEZ didn't have foreign passengers, her income would be drastically reduced. There are some trips I wonder why I narrate in English since it seems more than half the riders are speaking in other tongues. Why didn't the QUEENS have more foreign passengers? Ask Franz and Carmen! If they didn't have Phyllis to book them, they wouldn't have had access to the boats. The QUEENS' ownership didn't cultivate foreign relationships - and as I recall, in the latter years didn't do a heck of a lot in befriending American TAs either. Here's a question for our readers: most of us posters knew about the boats because we live on the rivers. But if you don't live on the river, how did YOU find out about the DQ, MQ, or AQ????
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