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Meet the team: Christopher Foy

24/03/2017

Azura’s loyalty and cruise sales manager Christopher Foy tells us why he’s so pleased to have made the move from guest to crew member

Christopher Foy, loyalty and cruise sales manager

Loyalty and cruise sales manager Christopher Foy is passionate about cruising

How long have you worked for P&O Cruises?

Since 2015. Before that, I was a sales account manager for British Gas for 12 years – a world away from my job today! However, I loved the sea and travel, and I always knew I wanted to work at sea. Before joining P&O Cruises, I had been on 63 cruises, and I gained some industry experience working as a cruise sales specialist for Page & Moy and 1st4cruising.com. I was actually on board Queen Mary 2 celebrating 175 years of Cunard when I received an email offering me the job and welcoming me to the P&O Cruises family. I started two weeks later.

 

Which ships have you worked on?

I was the very first cruise sales and loyalty assistant on Britannia, but I quickly progressed up the ladder and within eight weeks was promoted to loyalty and cruise sales manager on Aurora.

 

Since then, I’ve worked on Britannia, Aurora, Adonia, Oriana and Azura. Each lady of the sea offers her own unique personality.

 

What attracted you to the idea of working at sea?

My aunt and uncle introduced me to cruising on the QE2 in 1983, at the tender age of five. Later that same year, I cruised on Canberra with my grandparents. Many of our guests today recall Canberra and can tell stories of her voyages, which always make me smile as these are some of the fondest memories I have of growing up.

 

What does your role as loyalty and cruise sales manager involve?
Along with my colleagues, I’m responsible for promoting future cruise sales and supporting guests in booking their next holiday. We also look after the Peninsular Club and organise the on-board benefits for guests who have earned rewards through the loyalty programme.

 

Event planning is a major part of the role – priority lunches and Peninsular Club cocktail parties, for example – and we’re also involved in ship duties, such as assisting on tours and tender duties when we anchor in smaller ports.

 

What are the key challenges of your job? And the rewards?
The main challenges we face are meeting every guest’s expectations. Travelling as much as I have, I know how exciting and important it all is, from booking to being on board. I know how I want to feel when I travel and I try to ensure every guest feels the same. The rewards come from knowing this has been achieved; the many letters and cards we receive at the end of a cruise prove that, and are always a joy to read.

What do you enjoy about cruise life?
What isn’t there to enjoy? Every day is different – there’s always a new adventure and exciting destination to discover. It’s the only office window I’ve ever had where the view constantly changes. Being part of the ship’s crew also gives me a family away from home. I’ve made friendships that I know will last a lifetime and I’ve had experiences money can’t buy.

What do you like doing during your time off, away from the ship?
I love spending time with my family. They’re all very supportive and follow me on my travels. Although they also think I’m odd, because after six months at sea working I also love to cruise in my spare time!

What’s your favourite port you’ve visited since working for P&O Cruises?
My favourite so far has to be Santarem on the Amazon River in Brazil. The sail into port was just stunning, seeing the waters constantly changing, and then we were treated to incredible jungle views and wildlife.

 

After all your travels, are there any cruise destinations left on your bucket list?
One of my ambitions is to complete a whole world cruise from Southampton, visiting some of the world’s most amazing ports. Bucket-list highlights would have to be Bora Bora, San Francisco and of course, the magic of arriving into Sydney.

Are there any particular stories that stand out from your time with P&O Cruises?
Earlier this year, a nervous gentleman approached us to help him propose to his long-term girlfriend on Azura. I put him in touch with our events manager, and the plans started to take shape. A few days later, on a Black Tie night, our band Accent was playing her favourite song (Adele’s Make You Feel My Love) in the Atrium and then the microphone was passed to him. He made a short speech, then went down on one knee to pop the question. The whole place erupted and she had tears running down her face – as did lots of other people who witnessed the event. Our photographers were on hand too, capturing the moment for them to share with family and friends. We were really honoured to be part of it.

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