Cruise ship fees are rising like the tides.
Carnival Cruise is the latest cruise line raising service charges to passengers’ bills. Carnival notified guests and travel advisors this week that crew gratuities and Wi-Fi fees will increase this year, taking effect on April 1 and January 16, respectively.
This news comes three weeks after Princess raised its service fees by more than 10%, and just two days after Norwegian raised its service fees by 25%.
What should I expect to increase?
For those staying in most cabins, automatic gratuity fees will increase by about 10%, from $14.50 to $16 per person per day, although guests can adjust this based on their service experience.
The Social WiFi plan — which includes access to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, many airline sites, and other social media platforms — will increase in price from $10.20 to $12.75 per day.
The Value package will cost $17 per day, up from $14.45. This includes access to e-mail, news, sports, weather, and finance websites.
The Premium package will rise to $18.70 from $17 per day. Skype, Zoom, and Teams video calls can be made with this plan if coverage allows, offering speeds three times faster than Value Plan.
Cruise lines have blamed the increased onboard prices in part on the costly prices of food and fuel needed to operate their ships, leaving passengers quite unhappy with these new rules, and understandably so.
Prior to the effective dates, guests who pre-pay gratuities or internet packages can still benefit from the lower rates. However, rates will increase automatically after January 16 for internet packages and after April 1 for gratuities.