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Cruise lines to offer online booking

Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises said Monday the Miami-based cruise companies will offer online booking for customers who visit travel agency Web sites and that agents will earn full commissions on all sailed bookings made online. The so-called Partner Booking Link will connect agency sites to RoyalCaribbean.com or CelebrityCruises.com for pricing, booking, credit card payment and multimedia presentations. The new link may be seen as an olive branch in the war for online bookings, pitting travel agents against cruise companies, airlines and other providers. Total U.S. leisure and business online travel purchases will surge from $18 billion in 2000 to $63 billion in 2006, according to Jupiter Media Metrix.

Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises said Monday the Miami-based cruise companies will offer online booking for customers who visit travel agency Web sites and that agents will earn full commissions on all sailed bookings made online. The so-called Partner Booking Link will connect agency sites to RoyalCaribbean.com or CelebrityCruises.com for pricing, booking, credit card payment and multimedia presentations.

The new link may be seen as an olive branch in the war for online bookings, pitting travel agents against cruise companies, airlines and other providers. Total U.S. leisure and business online travel purchases will surge from $18 billion in 2000 to $63 billion in 2006, according to Jupiter Media Metrix.