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Court expected to OK Aurora Expeditions' bid for Vantage assets

Pacific Travel Partners, an offshoot of Aurora Expeditions, emerged as the successful bidder for the assets of Boston-based Vantage Travel.

After three rounds of bidding, Pacific Travel Partners beat the previous front-runner, New Zealand’s family-owned Heritage Expeditions and its associate Nordic Hamburg.     

On Friday a Heritage Expeditions spokesperson told Seatrade Cruise News ‘negotiations have concluded.'

Court approval expected

The US bankruptcy court is expected to approve the sale, despite objections from several parties, including affected passengers who want to use travel credits to pay for 100% of an ocean cruise.

$2m cash offer 

The cash component of the winning bid was reported as $2m, which Pacific Travel Partners hiked from its initial $1.5m, along with 5% of future revenue through to 2028.

Assets purchased include the trade name Vantage Deluxe World Travel and the customer and prospect list.

Travel credits

Aurora’s offer also allows Vantage customers to use existing travel credits to fund up to 50% of the cost of ocean voyages and 20% of river cruises and land trips, but this is not applicable to air travel or trip extensions.

Any deposits for new bookings from former Vantage clients will be placed in a trust account and not released to Aurora until departure.