Carnival Cruise Line Addresses Muster Drill and Smoking Areas

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Following recent concerns about smoking areas onboard, Carnival Cruise Line Brand Ambassador John Heald has addressed how the muster drill and smoking areas are related. This included urging guests to complete their e-muster immediately upon boarding so there are no delays for the ship’s safety drill and subsequent departure.

Some frequent cruisers have expressed the preference for Carnival Cruise Line to return to the classic muster drill. This would involve all guests gathering at their muster stations at once while crew members demonstrate safety procedures, including how to wear a life jacket.

At the cruise restart following the global pandemic, the cruise line introduced the e-muster. This simplified drill has guests reporting to their muster stations individually, and safety videos are available to convey essential information. This has been received well by guests and allows embarkation day to proceed much more smoothly.

Carnival Hub App
Image Courtesy: Carnival Cruise Line

Because some muster stations are located inside ships’ casinos, however, smoking is no longer permitted in those areas while they are being used for the muster drill. This means that guests who smoke cannot do so in the casino until after all muster drills are completed.

“The casinos are used on most ships as a Muster Station and that is one of the reasons why on embarkation day that smoking is not allowed there,” Heald confirmed.

Heald also noted that guests are only permitted to smoke in casinos if they are actively playing.

“Once the ship sails and the roulette tables start rouletting, the blackjack tables start blackjacking, the slot machines start slotting and the crap tables start… Ummm… Opening then if you are playing you may smoke,” he said.

To facilitate casinos opening as soon as possible, Heald encourages guests to complete their e-muster as soon as they board their ship on embarkation day. Carnival Cruise Line helps ensure this by only permitting passengers to purchase two drinks on their onboard accounts unless they have already completed their muster drill.

After a second drink purchase, a guest’s account will be locked until their drill completion is confirmed. This applies even if travelers have pre-paid for a drink package.

To complete the muster drill, guests only need to visit their assigned muster station – printed on their boarding pass as well as their Sail and Sign card – for a brief safety discussion and demonstration of the life jacket. The entire process takes less than five minutes at the muster station, where multiple crew members are available to answer questions and check off guests’ participation.

“Nothing is more important than your safety. If you ever have any concerns, worries or questions please speak to a crew member while you are on the ship and they will address your concerns immediately,” Heald said.

Where You Can Never Smoke Onboard

While Carnival Cruise Line does provide designated smoking areas onboard all its ships, it must be noted that guests are never permitted to smoke in their staterooms or on balconies. The penalties for doing so can be severe, including fines, debarkation, and a ban from Carnival Cruise Line, depending on the severity of the offense.

Can You Smoke on a Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Filistra / Shutterstock

“If you get caught, and we do catch many of the few who do break this law, there will be an instant $500 fine,” Heald confirmed. “If after that your smoking continues then we may disembark you and not allow you to sail again.”

Smoking is not permitted on ship balconies because of the risk of fire. Even a small amount of hot ash or a single cigarette butt could blow back onto the ship and potentially cause a fire, an extremely hazardous and potentially life-threatening situation on a cruise ship.

Read Also: Can You Smoke on a Cruise Ship – What to Know

If Carnival cruise travelers note someone smoking on a balcony, they are urged to call 7777 or 8000 from any ship phone to report the incident. While no one likes to be a tattle-tale, this is a safety issue.

Furthermore, I know from personal experience that anyone reporting smoking on a balcony will be kept confidential while security deals with the situation, having had to make those calls myself. Many travelers dislike the smell of cigarette smoke, and someone smoking on their balcony may mean that guests in multiple nearby staterooms may be unable to enjoy their own balconies.

Every Carnival cruise ship has outdoor smoking areas in different locations to give smokers a safe place for their habit, but following the rules is always critical for the safety of everyone onboard, smokers and non-smokers alike.

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