Chairwoman Christine Duffy’s approach is commendable and admirable in many ways. Duffy has always said she considers Carnival Cruise Line an American cruise line. And the American cruise line sails from American ports.
This plan could also backfire in more ways than one. Many cruise lines can depart from the Bahamas. Doing nothing could delay the cruise line’s operations even longer, while competitors like Royal Caribbean are already starting to sail from other home ports outside the United States.
We look at why Carnival Cruise Line made the right decision to stick with its strategy. And we look at why Carnival Cruise Line’s plan could backfire and ultimately prove to be a bad decision.
Photo credits: Igor_Koptilin / Shutterstock.com
Much of Carnival Cruise Line’s strategy is part of Carnival Corporation’s strategy. The company is charting a course where different cruise lines represent different segments of the world’s population and specific demographic groups.
Carnival Cruise Line, for example, focuses on the United States, Costa Cruises on Italy, AIDA on Germany, Seabourn on the ultra-luxury market. P&O UK, on the other hand, focuses mainly on the UK market.
Arnold Donald and Christine Duffy will not want to break this strategy. Duffy said that in a video message last week:
At Carnival, we have no plans at this time to move our ships out of their home ports in the United States. I’ve always said that Carnival Cruise Line is America’s cruise line. We sail from 14 U.S. home ports, a significant portion of our guests vacation with Carnival, and we sail with more families and children than any other cruise line.
This message was reinforced by John Heald, brand ambassador for Carnival Cruise Line and recently retired senior director of the company:
Shore personnel, porters and stevedores, taxi drivers, ship suppliers and subcontractors, truck drivers, dock workers, port pilots, airline employees, local merchants, hotels for pre and post cruise accommodation. These are just a few of the thousands of people who depend on the cruise industry and rely on Carnival Cruise Line ships. We will continue to support our 14 US home ports and cruise again as soon as possible.
But is this strategy the right choice? There are two ways to look at this:
photo credit: Solarisys / Shutterstock.com
Carnival Cruise Line has no choice but to abandon the path it has taken, or Royal Caribbean Cruises and Celebrity Cruises will reap the rewards.
There has been much talk of pent-up demand for cruises, and Carnival could lose too many contracts if it doesn’t change its mind. And that’s something shareholders in particular may not appreciate.
With the advent of the vaccine, cruise ships were only allowed to sail with vaccinated guests. Why would Carnival wait for ports in the U.S. when it can depart from Nassau, which is just an hour’s flight from Miami?
What’s the problem? A departure from Nassau or Miami makes far less difference than a departure from Sydney or Brisbane, which the airline would do without hesitation if the Australian market were open.
The current strategy could backfire on Carnival Cruise Line. The line will lose a lot of business. Customers looking to take a cruise can choose from Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises, and even Norwegian Cruise Line which is launching soon. Many will not be happy that Royal Caribbean’s share price has risen to $20 since February, while Carnival’s has only risen $7.
While the CDC has already indicated that new cruise renewal guidelines will be issued, there is no guarantee that this will pave the way for a summer restart. As cruise lines look for alternatives, a relaunch in the UK could put additional pressure on Carnival Cruise Line.
photo : Copyright Cruise Hive
Carnival may have made the right decision by sticking to its strategy of not sailing. Carnival Cruise Line is a US cruise line, so we have to wait until the US authorities deem it safe.
Millions of Americans depend on cruise ships for their income and livelihood. Like Duffy said, people cruise on Carnival ships. Families are an integral part of the atmosphere on Carnival ships, and changing 14 laptops would be detrimental to the eventual, perhaps inevitable, resumption of cruises to the United States. By remaining in the United States, Carnival reaffirms its strong support for U.S. ports and the local economy.
Second, many Americans are not really ready to travel around the world. Although vaccination rates in the US are among the highest in the world, there is little support for COVID-19 passports and mandatory vaccinations aboard cruise ships.
By waiting for the CDC requirements and deciding to stay in the United States, Carnival Cruise Line is leaving the decision up to the regulators. And it might turn out to be the smartest choice of all.
By staying in the U.S., a company shows not only that it cares about its business, but also that it cares about the communities that depend on that business.
Also read : Carnival Cruise Lines: Where they are and where they will go
There may be strong arguments for or against the decisions of Christine Duffy and Donald Arnold.
Carnival has pledged to reopen the United States and will not sail from other home ports. If the CDC makes a quick decision, it will do the right thing and be respected by the cruise line’s many fans in the United States.
If the CDC’s decision-making process drags on, Carnival Cruise Line may pay the price. Anyway, there’s nothing to do but wait and see what happens.
frequently asked questions
Are cruises becoming the norm again?
But the cruise is scheduled to return in 2021. In October, the CDC lifted the boating ban and established new guidelines for resuming large vessel trips in U.S. waters. … (The cruise lines were inundated with volunteers hoping to board these test cruises).
What happens if my Carnival cruise is cancelled?
Passengers on cancelled trips can choose between a full refund or a credit towards a future cruise worth 125% of the fare paid for the cancelled trip. The credit can be used for any trip up to 31. December 2021.
Is Carnival the worst cruise line?
Carnival is known as a fun and budget-friendly ship. But alas, one ship is on the list of the worst: Sunrise. CruiseCritic’s editor gave the ship 4 out of 5 stars, which seems to be a sign of good will toward the advertiser since passenger reviews were much worse.
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