CLIA Announces details of 2019 Cruise Conference


Theme for the CLIA Conference 2019 will be ‘Next Generation’ and Azamara Club Cruises’ Larry Pimentel named as keynote speaker

CLIA UK & Ireland has announced the theme for its flagship three-day 2019 Conference, taking place in Southampton from 15 – 17 May, will be ‘Next Generation’.

The theme explores what cruise lines are doing now to shape holidays for the future through innovation and investment – currently the industry has committed to investing $60 billion in new ships. 

Andy Harmer, CLIA UK & Ireland director, said: “The theme ‘Next Generation’ allows us to look ahead at how cruise holidays will change in the future in terms of the experiences on offer and the guests they will appeal to. There is a huge amount of investment within the cruise industry, not only on new ships but also in technological innovations. Through this theme we will be looking at how this investment will affect the ‘next generation’ of cruise holiday, from river and ocean to luxury and expedition.

“From dining and entertainment, to new technology used onboard and new shoreside experiences, ‘Next Generation’ looks at how guests’ cruise holiday experiences will change as we know it, both ashore and onboard.”

The theme also refers to how such new experiences could attract the next generation of holidaymakers, and how travel agents can make the most of this opportunity.

Andy Harmer continued: “The theme will explore who exactly the ‘Next Generation’ of cruisers are – people who may have never considered a cruise before but are attracted to the new, never-seen-before experiences cruise lines will offer. The theme also recognises our CLIA travel agent partners and the dedication they put into helping the cruise industry grow. We will continue to invest in providing our travel agent members with the very best in accredited learning, unique resources and inspirational events.”

CLIA also announced that Larry Pimentel, Azamara Club Cruises’ president and chief executive officer, will be a keynote speaker at the CLIA Conference 2019. Pimentel has held this role since 2009 is responsible for the strategic direction and leadership of the three-ship brand to ensure its continuous growth and success. Pimentel has more than 25 years of travel industry experience catering to the high-end consumer. Prior to taking the helm at Azamara, he served as president, chief executive officer and co-owner of SeaDream Yacht Club.

The annual CLIA Conference is the largest travel agent event in the UK with a record number of travel agents already registered. The three-day flagship event will include a trade fair, a full day of conference sessions and a gala dinner. Delegates will have the chance to visit to visit two of the three ships in port for the event: Celebrity Edge which launched in Miami this month, Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 and MSC’s Preziosa.


Laura is a UK cruise blogger based in Cornwall, UK. She founded Cruise Lifestyle in 2016 to share useful advice about cruising, destinations and food.
Last port visited: Bridgetown, Barbados
Next port of call: unknown, but she can’t wait for cruising to resume safely!

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