Three years ago Craft Cruises® moved its operations to Steamboat Springs, Colorado and we simply love it. True western hospitality, friendly locals and a low-key mountain environment combined with a non-existent crime rate, no humidity or pollution and sunshine every day has made living in "The Boat" so appealing. Of course the deep lightweight powder is another great appeal which led us to sponsor our first Knit & Ski Retreat in Steamboat Springs in January 2013.
Craft Cruises® specializes in enriching educational cruise groups and has become the leading experts in orchestrating this type of travel for groups of all sizes. In addition to destinations we feature every single year there are destinations we visit every other year and some we visit every three to five years. In addition to old favorites we are always looking for new and exciting places to visit. We also offer a very popular single share program where participants are pre-qualified, get to meet them in advance and save paying the single supplement.
World of mouth referrals is what has led Craft Cruises® to experience the sustained growth we've enjoyed over the years and to recognize those who enjoy spreading the word about our knitting trips Craft Cruises® has developed a very sophisticated referral commission program that WORKS! Our affiliate referral commission program unmatched in the cruise industry and it is free to affiliates. Unlike other cruise affiliate programs their goal is to give affiliates the tools needed to start earning money and free cruises without any franchise or membership fees. When you refer someone to Craft Cruises® there is a high rate of conversion and a very good chance they'll book over and over again.
How Craft Cruises® started
Craft Cruises® began in 1998 when the founder of Craft Cruises®, Melissa Gower-Pence, received two very special gifts for Christmas; knitting lessons and a trip to Stitches. During this trip the idea behind Craft Cruises® was born. Having specialized in cruise and group travel for many years, Melissa, along with the support of a few top knitting instructors, organized the first educational knitting cruise for hand knitters. Since then Craft Cruises® has arranged trips for thousands of happy travelers and has grown into a sustainable company offering employment opportunities to many.
The idea behind the Craft Cruises® is to bring Crafters from across the country and around the world together for enriching journeys of learning, shopping, and sharing. Quality instructors are essential to each cruise. Instructors are selected for their excellent teaching skills, fun personalities and expertise in the different regions being visited.
Craft Cruises® founder Melissa Gower-Pence
Melissa Gower-Pence grew up traveling the world. Her Dad was in the Army for 21 years so it was only natural for her to become a travel specialist. Melissa started her career in the travel industry the year she graduated high school in 1987. While specializing in a variety of destinations Melissa has always been a cruise specialist and has many years experience as a professional event manager. While Melissa loves both the art of knitting and cruising, what motivates her most is the shared travel experience.
Melissa earned her associates degree in travel and tourism from Northampton Community College and began her career at The Cruise Shoppe in Bethlehem, PA specializing in cruises and group travel. Within a short time it became evident travel was her passion so learning as much about the world she was selling became her primary goal. Melissa went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in international business focusing on foreign politics, economics and sustainable development from Cedar Crest College in Allentown, PA. Over the years Melissa worked in all facets of the industry and considers herself blessed for loving what she does so much. Her passion is to help others enjoy travel as much as she does.