With Carnival Cruise Line changing its room service selection for breakfast and including an increased selection it will charge guests for, one thing is sure: Many guests will question the move from the Miami-based cruise line.
Reason enough for Carnival to provide more details on what it has planned this coming October 1. Carnival Brand Ambassador John Heald quickly jumped on his Facebook page to further explain the room service changes. Carnival has also revealed the ‘nominal’ price hike for Wifi onboard.
Room Service Changes Questioned
Yesterday, September 9, Carnival Cruise Line sent a message to guests booked onboard one of the ships in the fleet it would be making several changes to its room service menus. These changes include removing some complimentary items and charging for more items the cruise line calls the a la carte selection.
Carnival has based the decision to make these changes on market research since the restart in July of 2021. The cruise line noticed a large amount of food waste during this period.
The solution that Carnival has thought of to minimize food waste was to bring several changes to the complimentary room service breakfast items.
The move was widely questioned by those who received the letter, with many under the impression that the full room service breakfast would no longer be complimentary. Reason for John Heald, the popular brand ambassador for Carnival Cruise Line, to post some clarifications on his Facebook page:
John Heald, Carnival Cruise Line Brand Ambassador: “So yesterday we made some changes to our Room Service menu, and I received so many comments asking me to clarify a few things so please allow me to do so. Room service continental breakfast remains complimentary from 6 to 10 AM.”
“For those of you asking for clarification, there will be a nominal charge for all other items. The definitely upgraded sandwiches and treats will be truly superb and you are going to be very pleased when you see the menu and the affordable prices. I will post the menu as soon as I can.”
Food Waste the Driving Factor Behind Changes
Heald further acknowledges that the changes are indeed due to food waste issues, with some guests taking advantage of the free food and over-ordering. However, he also recognizes that a cost factor is also at play.
“So while it is not the only reason, and it would be silly of me to say it was, trying to cut down on food waste is one of the reasons these nominal fees now apply after breakfast time,” Heald said.
What should also be accounted for is that more complimentary items on the menu means more preparation for the chefs. Cutting down on complimentary items will mean less food prepared and, thus, less food wasted.
For those who dislike having to pay extra for a sandwich or other treat to be delivered to their room, there are no changes to the availability of food at the Lido deck. This remains open from 11 AM through 11 PM, at no charge.
New Wi-fi Rates Revealed
Besides the room service changes, we revealed yesterday that Carnival Cruise Line would also be implementing a price hike for the onboard Wifi connection for the second time this year, on October 1.
For the base package, or the Social package as Carnival calls it, guests now pay $8.50 per day if they purchase the package before sailing. This price will increase to $10.20 per day, an increase of $1,70 per day.
The value package, which can be used to surf favorite sites, retrieve e-mail, read up on the news, and more, is increasing to $14.45 per day, an increase of $3.40 per day from the old rate of $11.05 if pre-purchased.
The top tier package, or Premium package, sees an increase of $2.55 to $17.00 per day, up from $14.45. These prices will increase by an additional 15% if guests wait to purchase the package until they get onboard.
These are, again, some significant changes from Carnival Cruise Line, which has been making many smaller changes in the past months. With costs rising significantly worldwide, these price hikes and operational changes are undoubtedly understandable from a business point of view.
However, they certainly do not make cruising any cheaper at a time when many are already feeling the burden of the worldwide economic crisis.