American Queen Steamboat Company (AQSC) and Victory Cruise Lines (VCL) announced the launch of the combined Steamboat and Victory Academy (SAVA). The enhanced travel agent certification training program can be found by visiting MyCruiseAcademy.com or by logging into the AQSC or VCL travel agent portal. The academy incorporates content from both AQSC and VCL and provides on-demand training modules and integrated quizzes for prospective SAVA certified agents.
“Our travel partners are critical to the success of both American Queen Steamboat Company and Victory Cruise Lines,” shares John Waggoner, CEO and founder of American Queen Steamboat Company. “Following the many challenges of 2020, we wanted to create a program that empowers our partners to successfully and confidently navigate all aspects of our cruise offerings. This new Academy allows us to further connect with agents and educate them on our latest policy updates and offerings, including enhanced health and safety, flexible booking policies and our new vessels, the American Countess for AQSC and Ocean Victory for VCL.”
The combined Steamboat and Victory Academy was launched domestically in May 2020, and this September, the company launched an international version for agents outside the U.S. and Canada. The program is made up of 12 on-demand training modules and supplemented with integrated quizzes. The modules cover topics that will ensure travel agents are prepared to answer any questions about AQSC/VCL cruises and booking processes.
The modules include:
- Introductions to both AQSC and VCL
- Reservation logistics
- Shore excursions – both included and premium tours
- Group reservations
- Travel agent portal and support
- Informational on each vessel
Agents will receive a certificate upon completion, as well as a certified agent logo for use in email signatures and websites. Other benefits for participating agents include access to travel agent reduced rates, exclusive invitations to officially hosted educational FAM trips and access to live webinars throughout the calendar year. Agents who previously completed the Steamboat Academy prior to the launch of the new combined academy on May 1, 2020 are grandfathered into SAVA and still qualify for the exclusive benefits of being an AQSC and VCL travel agent.
“We value the partnerships we have with our travel agents and wanted to offer them something they could truly benefit from,” shares Barbara Davis, Director of Product Training. “We designed this program to help agents build a solid foundation of knowledge about all aspects of the cruises, while also maximizing time and efficiency. MyCruiseAcademy.com offer great benefits like real-time results and certification upon completion. The positive feedback from agents is astounding and it resonates with our record-breaking participation in the academy.”
Looking ahead to 2021, American Queen Steamboat Company and Victory Cruise Lines are eager to resume operations and welcome cruisers aboard. Joining the authentic paddlewheelers of AQSC is the American Countess, which features immersive itineraries down the Mississippi, Ohio, Cumberland, Tennessee and Illinois Rivers. Victory Cruise Lines’ newest ship, Ocean Victory, will debut in May 2021 and will take guests on responsible and innovative expedition cruises to Alaska.
AQSC and VCL also created enhanced health and safety protocols that are ready for implementation when both cruise lines resume operations in 2021. The new policies were designed to protect guests, crew members and the communities the vessels visit, in the face of COVID-19. AQSC and VCL are prepared to continue to adjust its operations and protocols with the everchanging situation surrounding COVID-19 to ensure the well-being of everyone involved.