What Really Cruise Lines Don’t Tell You?

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Oasis of the Seas Royal CaribbeanInternational

Part 1

I read a lot of posts about cruising written by different people. From novice to cruise industry to seasoned travel professionals. The most interesting topic is about what cruise lines don’t tell you. Authors cover different aspects from not informing about price drop, up to possibility of changing itinerary and everything in between.

But what those posts don’t cover is a quality of the crowd on board the ship. This is similar to real estate business. Real estate agent doesn’t have a right to explain neighborhood in details. She talks about the house and its features. The problem is that you will live in a particular neighborhood where this house is located.

The same goes for cruise ships. On forums people discuss everything: from toilet paper to gourmet restaurants but not what kind of people are on board a particular cruise ship and cruise lines. This is as taboo in real estate business, we don’t discuss neighborhood. Sounds as cruise lines don’t have control over vacationing crowd. This is not true.

Each cruise lines have a very clear idea what kind guests they want to attract: age, income, marital status. They built ships based on guests’ socio demographics. Most staterooms on the ship are staterooms with balcony. Calculate who can afford it. Cruise line build ship that cost a few billions – guess what kind of market niche they want to be in. A lot of activities for kids? A few facilities for kids? Huge casino? No casino? Start thinking about this.

Are you wandering why you see ‘sponsored posts’ on Facebook from the same cruise lines? It is not a secret that they do targeting advertising based on your income, interests, age, and marital status. This means that you are a good candidate for their product. When you receive promotion and your spending habits change you will see advertisement from the different cruise lines.

Problem with those advertisements is clear: advertisers know statistics about you but don’t know you personally. That is why only 61% of cruisers return back satisfied with their cruise vacation. 39% are not happy for the different reasons but mostly due to mismatching of guests’ expectations and cruise products: hardware and software.

Hardware is easy to fix by selecting another ship, stateroom, location. ‘Software’ is more complicated: level of service for particular social group, and the most important, quality of crowd – people that surround you on your vacation.

It is very interesting but the highest satisfaction rate is for Disney Cruises – 83%. Look at their price structure:

  • They don’t run too many promos
  • They don’t have casino, so their prices are higher compare to competitors
  • They have different prices for kids of different ages

Nobody heard about $199 plus tax on their cruises. Because they are selective what kind of guests they want to see on board. They fill their ships with ease. That is why they don’t need promotions.

How to use different signals to figure out what kind of crowd to expect on board? This will be a topic of my next post in a week. You will be surprised to learn that crowd may be totally different on the same ship on the same cruise line.

If you want to make an informed decision about your personal cruise vacation and give us your business, please call my office at 772 777-1337 or fill out a form above.

Are you interested? Fill out a form above or call 772 777-1337 and we can start planning your next cruise vacation.

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Elite Cruise Counselor

Nadia Jastrjembslaia. PhD. is a CLIA certified Cruise Counselor in the highest rank of Elite Cruise Counselor and Luxury Cruise Specialist. CLIA stands for Cruise Line International Association. She is a managing director of Aurora Cruises and Travel - storefront cruise travel agency in Port St. Lucie, Florida. She experienced more than 80 cruise ships and sailings. Nadia is a published author with her new book Suite Cruising on Royal Caribbean Fleet is scheduled to hit market in March 2016.

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