Sunday, September 30, 2012

Cruise News: Costa Cruises Simplifies Stateroom Category Selection

At last! A cruise line is finally simplifying stateroom categories to make it easier for consumers to decide which one to book. Most cruise ship accommodations are prefabricated and slipped into place, making them similar—if not identical—but you'd never know that when faced with the challenge of picking one from amongst a dozen or more categories that are typically offered.

Costa Cruises is now streamlining the system by introducing a new stateroom categorization plan beginning on December 2012 sailings that provides new benefits for both travel sellers and guests. Cabin categories will be reduced to four—Classic, Premium, Samsara and Suites—offering a price point and amenity level for every cruiser. You'll still have to take care when picking a specific stateroom, but the new categorization should help by specifying exactly what's included.

"By reducing our cabin categories down to four, we're hoping to eliminate a lot of the frustration and confusion that can happen when there are too many options and levels of accommodation," said Scott Knutson, vice president of sales and marketing for Costa Cruises North America. "With the enhanced cabin categorization plan our guests can select to new added-value benefits, while our travel partners have higher available earning potential."
• Classic category includes standard-size cabins where guests enjoy all of the standard services of the ship. They offer the most affordable prices and are located on the lower decks of the ship.
• Premium staterooms are on the upper decks and provide the best choice of cabin location, confirmed dining times, complimentary in-room breakfast, 24/7 room service and double Costa Club points, plus a 10 percent future cruise discount.
• Samara cabins and suites are located inside or near the spa area and feature unlimited access to the spa, an exclusive restaurant, welcome ritual and a series of wellness treatments. This category also receives all benefits of a Premium cabin.
• Suites provide first-class services for a luxury vacation. Suite guests receive all Premium benefits plus many other exclusive services and amenities. Guests in Suites also are entitled to priority boarding, a dedicated valet (excluding Mini Suites) and a bottle of sparkling wine.
Members of Costa Club, Costa's complimentary loyalty program for past guests, also qualify for tailor-made privileges including complimentary cabin amenities, on-board discounts, preferential boarding and disembarkation, luggage delivery and shore tour privileges, plus priority restaurant seating.

For 64 years Costa Cruises’ ships have sailed worldwide, offering the best in Italian style, hospitality and cuisine. The line’s ships visit 250 destinations throughout the Mediterranean, northern Europe, the Baltic, Caribbean, South America, United Arab Emirates, Far East and Indian Ocean. The line has 15 ships in service and one new 130,000-ton ship on order from Fincantieri for delivery in October 2014.For more information on Costa Cruises, visit

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