On the day the CDC released new guidelines for simulated voyages, and specifically, with new guidelines on restrictions inside dining rooms and a ban on buffet dining, Princess cruises might have found the golden goose.
A few months ago, we covered how Princess cruises were rolling out its MedallionClass enhancements, which see a long list of digital and service enhancements brought to the luxury Princess ships.
The line has now revealed its new dining anytime, anywhere, anyhow, concept. And as far as we can see, it’s one of the best enhancements that has come to cruising in recent times.
Dine My Way
The new service makes it easy for guests to plan and tailor their dining experience, including the dine anywhere service called ‘OceanNow’, which lets guests order food at any time of the day, at any point of the vessel through the onboard app.
Suppose a guest wants their favorite fruity drink while relaxing anywhere onboard or looks to avoid a crowd or standing in line. In that case, they can order whatever they want — burger, beer, chocolate cake, cocktails, etc. — and it will be delivered to them with no service charge. As Princess Cruises says: Keep your distance, keep your seat, and still enjoy excellent service.
It’s not the only change the cruise line is making onboard its ships. When making a reservation for any of the restaurants onboard through the onboard app, guests will be able to:
- Add additional friends or family members with whom they are traveling
- Select their preferred pace of dining (relaxed, quick)
- Indicate their desired seating location (near a window, close to the entrance) in the Ocean profile
- Share dietary preferences and allergen information
- Pick the same venue each night
- Request the same time each night if they prefer the same waitstaff.
It offers guests a way out of the often frustrating process of telling a different Maitre’d a dining preference each night and gives guests the chance to book and sit with their favorite waiter or waitress each night. Something many guests onboard look forward to.
Cruise Lines Will Need to Go On-Demand
In a time when our society has changed to a high pace on-demand society where everything is available when and where people want it, Princess cruises is stepping into a void in the cruise industry, which has often been accused of clinging to the ideals of old. With Medallion Class, Ocean Now and Dine My Way Princess is catering to a new normal.
Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises president:
“We believe guests are going to love the control and customization Dine My Way offers, instead of restricting dining choices during the pandemic, we’ve been able to expand the options for our guests and thanks to the unique, innovative capabilities of the OceanMedallion, reduce wait times and eliminate the need to stand in line.”
It comes at an ideal time when social distancing is a norm that cruise lines will need to adhere to. By proactively catering to this, the cruise line shows it is working towards moving forward as one of the most technologically advanced cruise lines.
Mario Siebaldi, Princess Cruises senior vice president of Guest Experience:
“Guests have always appreciated the convenience of OceanNow, and because the pandemic has expanded people’s use of ‘on-demand’ direct delivery services, we think even more guests will embrace the ability to order what they desire and have it delivered to them wherever they are on board. It not only prevents unnecessary queuing, more importantly it elevates the guest experience.”
Medallion Class offers a host of improvements onboard the Princess ships, including wearables that are used for everything from opening doors, payments, check-ins, and much more.
It also offers some of the fastest WIFI at sea, with speeds that will allow passengers to stream music, movies, TV programs, and sport and access social media platforms. Welcome to the new normal, which will be a breath of fresh air with Princess Cruises’ advancements onboard.