While cruising has made a full comeback, the industry is now having to cope with the financial consequences of the pandemic. Norwegian Cruise Line for example is increasing charges while decreasing service.
It’s no secret the recent pandemic has left deep financial scars in the cruise industry forcing cruise lines to rethink their operations and cut costs where possible. As part of this process Norwegian Cruise Line recently announced it is increasing its daily service charges. From January 1, 2023 the cruise line is increasing the daily service charge for guests staying in club balcony suites and below to $20.00 per person per day. For guests staying in The Haven & Suite the charge will be $25.00 per person per day, an increase of 25%.
In a letter sent to guests and travel agents the company explains: “At Norwegian Cruise Line, we are committed to delivering exceptional guest experiences at every step of the cruise journey, and with the dedication of our shipboard team, we are able to turn your vacation dreams into reality. As such, we make it easy for guests to show their appreciation for these vacation heroes with discretionary daily services charges, which provide gratuities to key onboard team members, including room stewards, restaurant servers and behind-the-scenes support staff.”
More recently NCL announced it was cutting 9% of its shoreside workforce. In an SEC filing the company said: “The Company is undergoing a broad and ongoing effort to improve operating efficiencies, including cost minimization initiatives, to strengthen the foundation for sustained, profitable growth. As part of this initiative, on December 14, 2022, the Company carried out a workforce reduction and rightsizing to better align the Company’s workforce with its strategic priorities and prepare for its future growth, resulting in an approximately 9% reduction in current and planned shoreside roles.”
Finally on December 28 Norwegian announced it is reducing cleaning services in guest staterooms. Starting January 8, 2023 aboard Norwegian Epic guest staterooms – studio, inside, oceanview, balcony, and club balcony – will receive once-daily stateroom service. All other suite and Haven categories will continue to receive twice-daily stateroom service.
According to a letter sent to crew members the new policy will positively impacts the cruise line’s commitment to environmental sustainability and keeps the company in alignment with current standard practices in the cruise and hotel industries by promoting conservation of water and energy resources and by reducing the use of chemicals onboard the ships.
As a result of the reduced cleaning service, Norwegian will be able to reduce the number of crew by eliminating the position of Junior Stateroom Steward. The onboard position titles Stateroom Steward and Junior Stateroom Steward will be adjusted in a singular position titled Stateroom Attendant.
The new policy will be rolled out to the entire fleet and is expected to be completed by March 31, 2023.