Priceless Cruising – The secret word is “flamingo” | TravelResearchOnline


Priceless Cruising – The secret word is “flamingo”

I’ll bet many of you get frustrated because you send important information to clients in detailed emails… only to find it has not been read. This may or may not cause you additional work with their booking, but at the bare minimum can make their trip either more challenging, or they miss something completely because they didn’t read it. Right?

In that case, you’ll enjoy this story and may want to incorporate the same strategy I am using when you have important information to send someone (especially a group).

I have been working with a group of 24 that just had a wedding onboard a ship before it sailed. Since the wedding was within two hours of boarding, I needed to convey special boarding instructions to the entire group, as well as the details on what they needed to do for their participation in the wedding.

In my detailed instructions to the guests, at the end of the main section, I added: “The secret word is Flamingo.” Then at the end of the email, I asked them to please reply that they had read and understood the instructions and to please provide me with the secret word. (I chose “flamingo”, but it could be any word.)

The first person replied back and said he had read and understood the email. I emailed him back “so what’s the secret word?” He emailed back a little later with the word flamingo and two LOL’s. Another piped back and said “John and I understand the importance of flamingos.” Three of them actually took the time to find either a photo of a flamingo or a cute graphic and then emailed those to me! The point is, they actually DID read it AND had fun with it (which also endeared me to them because I have now added a small level of fun to their experience!)

The point is, it was effective in conveying important information so I KNOW everyone read it (and there were NO panicked phone calls the morning of embarkation either!). If this might work for you—please use it and modify it to suit your style. We’re selling fun, not furniture, so have fun with it!

Susan “Smitty” Price, ACC, is a cruise coordinator with Priceless Cruising, a home-based operation out of San Luis Obispo, Calif., that specializes in river and ocean cruises. She is an active member of the SLO Chamber of Commerce, SLO Women’s Network, two quilt guilds and the Alzheimer’s Association. Contact Smitty through, Facebook, LinkedIn or

  One thought on “Priceless Cruising – The secret word is “flamingo”

  1. What’s the secret word here? BRILLIANT!!!!

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