Carnival Cruise Line Clears Confusion Over Fee

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With interested guests concerned about fees for BOLT: Ultimate Sea Coaster on the new Carnival Celebration, the cruise line has clarified the cost of the attraction as well as what the cost includes. BOLT first debuted onboard Mardi Gras with great interest, and an identical coaster is now open aboard Carnival Celebration.

What Does BOLT Cost?

BOLT: Ultimate Sea Coaster is an extra-charge attraction onboard Carnival Cruise Line’s Excel-class ships, Mardi Gras and Carnival Celebration.

The cost, confirmed by Carnival Cruise Line representatives, is $15 per passenger for each ride, which consists of two complete laps around the coaster’s track.

As Carnival Celebration has debuted in recent days, there was some initial confusion that BOLT cost $19 aboard the new ship, but the confirmation of the price was posted to Carnival Cruise Line brand ambassador John Heald’s popular Facebook page.

“The charge is $15 on Mardi Gras and Celebration as well,” the clarification read in response to guest comments. “$15 for two laps.”

Source of the Confusion

The confusion could be the result of several factors. Some YouTube tours and reviews of the new ship included information and discussion of BOLT, noting that the price might be $19, but without direct confirmation of signage, reservations, or receipts noting the fee.

Speculation considered the idea that the confusion might be related to different currencies, since Carnival Celebration first set sail from Finland and then began her inaugural voyage from Southampton in the United Kingdom.

Carnival Celebration Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Jouni Niskakoski / Shutterstock

If currencies were listed as “15” in euros (€), the official currency of Finland, or in British pounds (£), the currency of the United Kingdom, the conversion to U.S. dollars would be $15 and $17, respectively.

A screenshot of the Carnival Hub app, however, may have solved the confusion.

When reserving BOLT onboard, information about the attraction is displayed. BOLT is found on Deck 19, and the way the information is listed, a dollar sign ($) directly proceeds the attraction’s deck location “19 AFT”.

This display, if only quickly glanced at, could give the impression that the cost is $19. The dollar sign on that line only indicates that the attraction costs an extra fee, but $15 per person is clearly listed as BOLT’s price on another line.

Recent price increases from Carnival Cruise Line, including adding a $5 charge for third and more entrees in the main dining rooms as well as doubling the pre-cruise price of bottled water, have cruise guests on alert for additional increases and extra fees.

Is BOLT Worth the Price?

BOLT is a unique cruise ship attraction, the first and only rollercoaster at sea. Both Mardi Gras and Carnival Celebration feature the ride, and the track length, layout, speed, and duration of the ride is the same on both vessels.

Carnival's BOLT Roller Coaster
Photo Courtesy: Carnival Cruise Line

The ride can accommodate two riders at once, seated together as if on a jet ski or motorcycle, and the front rider has speed controls to customize the ride experience.

For guests who enjoy thrill rides or are roller coaster aficionados, BOLT is certainly worth a ride. Guests with heart, back, or neck problems, however, or guests who may be pregnant or who are susceptible to motion sickness, are advised not to ride.

All riders must also meet height, weight, and other physical requirements to be able to ride BOLT safely. The ride will also close in inclement weather when wind, rain, or the ship’s motion might affect its operation.

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