Carnival Cruise Director Change Aboard Newest Ship

A very popular cruise director has returned to Carnival Cruise Line's flagship. How will the leadership continue to change in the future?

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One of Carnival Cruise Line’s most popular cruise directors has returned to lead the Fun Squad team aboard the cruise line’s flagship, Carnival Celebration. Lee Mason has begun his new contract assignment with the cruise line, bringing his distinctive brand of fun and charismatic energy to the ship.

Cruise Director Handoff Complete

Lee Mason officially took back the microphone for Carnival Celebration this week with the ship’s Sunday, April 2, 2023 departure, a 7-night Eastern Caribbean sailing from Miami to Puerto Plata, San Juan, and St. Maarten.

The popular cruise director has been between contracts, but returned to Carnival Celebration recently to transition back into his leadership role. The handover period is used to help teams adjust to new leadership styles, and for a new or returning cruise director to learn any new policies or practices since their last contract.

Lee Mason, Carnival Cruise Director
Lee Mason, Carnival Cruise Director

Mason was the first cruise director assigned to Carnival Celebration when the ship debuted, and now returns to continue the fun.

“We’re about to set sail on my first cruise back of the contract,” Mason announced from the bridge just prior to the guest safety briefing on Sunday morning. “So much fun to be had!”

Mason takes over from another of the cruise line’s most popular cruise directors, Chris “The Flying Scotsman” Williams, who is now himself between contracts and enjoying time off with his family.

“It is always an honor and a joy to experience a cruise with [Williams] – he has done wonders for Celebration and the Fun Squad family here onboard,” said Mason.

Carnival President and Cruise Director
Photo Courtesy: Carnival Cruise Line

Williams will return to Carnival Celebration in late July and will become the ship’s primary cruise director from July 31. Mason will once more become Carnival Celebration‘s cruise director in September. At the moment, there are no other cruise director assignments announced for Mason.

It is not unusual for cruise lines to move cruise directors around to different vessels, especially to fill in gaps for other cruise directors’ vacation periods, or to participate in training on different ship classes or in different sailing regions.

What Cruise Directors Do

No matter which ship he serves on, Mason brings a distinct personality and creative energy to his cruise director role.

Cruise directors work all over the ship with duties such as making shipboard announcements, introducing main production shows, hosting question-and-answer sessions, and leading dance parties and other special events, as well as greeting and interacting with guests.

Carnival Cruise Line Fleet Cruise Director
Photo Courtesy: Carnival Cruise Line

Each one brings their own style to the role, whether it is through certain jokes, colorful outfits, dance moves, or other flairs that cruise passengers love. In fact, many frequent cruisers plan future sailings depending on where their favorite cruise directors are currently serving.

Mason has served with Carnival Cruise Line since November 2016, and has served as cruise director on a dozen ships across the fleet, including Carnival Celebration‘s sister ship, Mardi Gras.

Not only is Mason one of the line’s most popular cruise directors with guests, but he is also popular with the teams he leads. Mason has received several peer awards during his service with Carnival, including the Cast Champion Award, Peer Choice Award, and Leader of the Year Award.

Read Also: How Much Does a Cruise Director Make?

Carnival Celebration is homeported from PortMiami, offering 7-night roundtrip Eastern Caribbean and Western Caribbean voyages calling on some of the region’s most popular ports, including St. Thomas, Roatan, Cozumel, and Costa Maya.

Select departures are also available for 8-night Southern Caribbean itineraries visiting Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao.

The 183,521-gross-ton ship can welcome 5,374 guests aboard at double occupancy, or as many as 6,500 passengers when fully booked. Carnival Celebration and Mardi Gras will be joined by their third Excel-class sister ship, Carnival Jubilee, in November 2023, which will be homeported from Galveston, Texas.

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