With a number of updates on new destinations across the company’s 10 brands, senior vice president and chief communications officer, Carnival Corporation, Roger Frizzell informs Panayiotis Markides about all that 2016 has in store for Carnival Corporation’s passengers
TTG: What trends are you witnessing in the global cruise sector? How are you capitalising on these trends?
One of the most important trends for our guests in a world that is increasingly digital is the ability to stay connected while out at sea. Carnival announced that it has expanded its innovative hybrid connectivity system to create the cruise industry’s largest WiFi network – and one of the world’s largest satellite mobility networks. With over 31 advanced satellite systems, the company’s expanded WiFi@Sea connectivity network features the broadest high-bandwidth Internet coverage in the industry with further deployment planned over the next several months – meaning that our guests have faster and more reliable access to their lives back at home during their vacation.
TTG: What destinations are opening up? Where are you headed to in 2016 (and beyond?)
Amber Cove is our newest destination in the Caribbean, and it will serve as a gateway to the Puerto Plata region on the Dominican Republic’s north coast. In 2016, our fleet of 99 ships will be travelling to more than 700 destinations around the world. We are always looking for new destinations for our guests to explore around the globe.
Additionally, China is a large market for cruising growth both in 2016 and in coming years. In 2016, Costa Cruises and Princess Cruises will again expand with each brand adding a ship to its fleet in China, representing a 58 per cent increase in capacity in China in 2016, and making Carnival Corporation the first global cruise company with six total ships based in China later this year.
TTG: Is the MENA market important for you? How are you capturing this market?
This market is very important to Carnival Corporation and its brands. Eight of our ten brands will be sailing to the MENA market in 2016, and we are always evaluating new ports in all regions of the world, including the Middle East and North Africa, to provide the best experience possible for our guests.
TTG: What exciting features do your vessels and itineraries boast?
Our four new ships will have features never before seen on a cruise ship, such as the first IMAX cinema theatre at sea on the Carnival Vista and Pepper, the world’s first robot that reads the main human emotions, on AIDAprima. AIDAprima will be the first cruise ship to be outfitted with dual fuel engines and can be powered almost emissions-free with liquefied natural gas (LNG) at sea and in port. Some of our most exciting itineraries include our world cruises. Costa Luminosa just set sail on a 108-day around-the-world cruise which will stop in Dubai among many other ports of calls. With ten brands, 99 ships and over 700 destinations, there is a perfect itinerary for all travellers.
TTG: Please share your latest and most exciting news with our readers.
Carnival will launch four new ships in 2016 across four of our global cruise brands – Carnival Vista for Carnival Cruise Line; ms Koningsdam for Holland America Line; AIDAprima for AIDA Cruises; and Seabourn Encore for Seabourn. We also intend to launch the first world-class, multi-ship domestic cruise brand in the Chinese market.