In a move that’s sure to please some passengers and anger others, some cruise lines under the the Carnival Corporation banner are rollng out new smoking policies.
Princess Cruises has announced that smoking will no longer be allowed in passenger staterooms or on balconies, effective on all sailings departing after January 15, 2012.
The new policy reflects changing customer preferences and the move around the globe–from North America to Europe–to further restrict areas where smoking is allowed, according to the line.
“Our consumer studies now show that smokers are a small minority of our passengers, and that the large majority of passengers value having their primary living space onboard smoke-free,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises executive vice president.
Swartz added that balconies are included in the new policy because they are a hallmark feature of Princess ships, and the line believes it’s important to keep that peaceful space clear of smoke.
She added that Princess still welcomes passengers who smoke, and will continue to provide special venues around the ship to accommodate smokers. Smoking will continue to be allowed in the Churchill’s cigar lounge, a section of the disco and casino, and a portion of the open decks.
Booked passengers are being notified of the new policy, which is also being communicated widely throughout the line’s informational materials. Passengers who violate the new policy will be charged a cleaning fee of $250.
Carnival Cruise Lines
As part of its ongoing commitment to keep pace with changing guest preferences, Carnival Cruise Lines will be modifying its smoking policy across its 23-ship fleet.
The new smoking policy will be rolled out in two stages:
• Effective June 15, 2011, cigarette smoking in public areas will be permitted only in Carnival’s dance clubs, designated areas within the casino and casino bar, certain sections on the open decks and in the jazz clubs on 13 Carnival ships. The 13 ships include Carnival Destiny, Carnival Triumph, Carnival Victory, Carnival Spirit, Carnival Pride, Carnival Legend, Carnival Miracle, Carnival Conquest, Carnival Glory, Carnival Valor, Carnival Liberty, Carnival Freedom, and Carnival Splendor. Cigar smoking will also be permitted in the jazz clubs. On other vessels in the fleet, cigar and cigarette smoking will be permitted in designated areas on deck.
• Effective December 1, 2011, smoking will be prohibited in all guest staterooms. Those guests in balcony accommodations will be permitted to smoke cigarettes and cigars outside on the balcony. Spa staterooms, currently featured on Carnival Splendor, Carnival Dream, and Carnival Magic, will continue to remain entirely smoke-free, including on the balconies.
The modified smoking policy is the result of recent guest surveys conducted by the company that covered a wide range of topics. The surveys indicated that nearly 90 percent of all Carnival Cruise Lines’ guests are non-smokers with less than five percent of guests opting to smoke in their staterooms.
These changes will be implemented aboard all 23 Carnival Cruise Lines ships, which operate 3- to 16-day voyages to the Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexican Riviera, Alaska, Hawaii, Panama Canal, Bermuda, and Europe.
Carnival is updating all of its collateral materials and communicating details of the modified smoking policy to its guests and travel agent partners. Passengers who violate the policy by smoking in their staterooms will incur a $250 cleaning and refreshing fee.
Holland America Line
Holland America Line has announced that in keeping with the majority of guest preferences today, a change is being made to the shipboard smoking policy on its fleet of 15 ships effective for sailings departing on or after January 15, 2012. The new smoking policy now designates staterooms as non-smoking areas in addition to the indoor public areas already defined as non-smoking.
For those guests who wish to smoke, there will continue to be designated areas available for this both inside and on outside decks. In addition, smoking is permitted on stateroom verandahs. As is already the case, cigar and pipe smoking is not allowed inside.
The new policy is being communicated to travel sellers as well as guests booked on sailings departing January 15, 2012 or later and will be posted on HollandAmerica.com.
Cruise Diva would just like to say that we have never understood the violent reaction of non-smokers to passengers smoking out of doors. The faux coughing and hand waving seem pretty unnecessary in the open air where smoke only lingers for seconds, even on adjacent balconies and especially on a moving ship when there is a breeze. This move by Carnival Corporation is sure to be controversial and we wonder if there will be cancellations as a result of the announcements. We also wonder if there are smokers who will consider it worth the $250 cleaning charge to smoke in their cabins.
We’ll keep you posted with developments from other Carnival brands as we receive them.