Category Archives: Loyalty Clubs

Do Loyalty Clubs Matter?

In the last couple months, we have heard about changes to the repeat cruiser programs on a number of  cruise lines, the most recent rumor is for Carnival Cruise Line.  It seems as though there are more people cruising again and again that the cruise lines are actually reducing what it is offering to repeat cruisers or making you cruise even more to get the same things you got before. Some are adding classifications and counting your credits a different way.

I have heard that a lot of people are up in arms about these changes.  On Cruise Critic, some of the changes to be proposed by Carnival Cruise Line has resulted in some angry people.

My question is does this really affect who you are going to cruise with next?  Do you look for the best loyalty program or the best cruise line?  Will you have a tendency to not remain loyal to just one cruise line and start cruising many others as a result?  Does this matter to you?

Basically, I’m wondering is it more important to get free perks or more important to have a great experience, great service, a great cruise?  Personally, I don’t like seeing the changes that reduce the benefits unless they are coupled with reduced fares as well.  Will that change my loyalty?  Possibly, but not because of the reduction of perks.  The reduction of perks will make me look at other cruise lines and see why I am not cruising them.  I have been on five different cruise lines, soon to be six.  That is what has changed my mind about which cruise line is the best, not the perks offered to me.  I always look for the best value for my dollar – not necessarily the best price.  Price is important, but if I’m getting a cheap cruise that I’m not happy with, it is a waste of my money, time, vacation…  I would rather spend a little more (or get a little less) if I’m going to have the best experience possible.

Where do you stand on this?

It’s National Cruise Vacation Month!

It’s time to celebrate

National Cruise Vacation Week!!

Come on over to our microsite to help us celebrate National Cruise Vacation Week with CLIA and participating cruise lines. With every booking during the month of October, you have a chance to qualify for Travel On A Dream’s loyalty program, a special onboard gift and select cruise line’s promotions as well! What are you waiting for? Join the fun now!

Captain’s Circle Member Benefits

Each cruise line, much like grocery stores, hotels and airlines, has a loyalty program and Princess is no different.  Once you have completed your first cruise, you are considered a Captain’s Circle member.  The Captain’s Circle is a great loyalty program from what I’ve learned about it.  I thought I would share the different levels and benefits for each with you.

After one sailing, you are a Gold Level member.  At the Gold Level, you are entitled to Special Launch savings and preferential pricing offers.  The Circle Center online is available to you which has a standby program, referral rewards and Circle Savings Account.  You will receive the Princess Cruises Captain’s Circle Magazine and eNewsletter.  You can also enter Princess Cruises Cruise Photo Contest.  Onboard your future sailings, you will have access to a Circle Host onboard and members-only onboard events.  Finally, you will get a member benefits card, a Princess Passport and a Gold Member pin.

Once you have completed five cruises or 51 days on the cruise through your 15th cruise or 150 cruise days, you will be considered a Platinum Level member.  At this level, you will receive all of the Gold Member benefits plus additional benefits.  When checking in at the port, you will get preferred check-in.  Onboard, you will get credit towards an Internet Cafe package based on the length of the cruise (up to 7 days – 150 minutes, 8-20 days – 250 minutes, 21+ days – 500 minutes).  When you purchase the standard vacation protection, you will be upgraded to the Platinum Vacation Protection for no additional cost.  You will have a preferred phone line to call on shore for all your cruise needs.  When disembarking the ship, you will have access to the Platinum Disembarkation Lounge.  All members at this level will receive a Cruise Atlas and a Platinum Member pin.

The final level with the Captain’s Circle is the Elite Level.  This starts after you have completed 15 cruises or 150 cruise days onboard.  In additional to all of the above benefits, the Elite members will receive the Preferred Services Package, Elite Discount Package and Preferred Amenities Package on each sailing.

In the Preferred Services Package, members receive complementary professional cleaning, laundry services and shoe polishing, priority ship to shore tender embarkation and priority disembarkation.  In the Elite Discount Package, members are given a 10% discount in the boutique plus complimentary Grapevine wine tasting.  Finally, the Preferred Amenities Package will give guests a complimentary mini-bar set up (customized to their liking), deluxe canapes on formal nights (upon request), upgraded stateroom amenities, traditional afternoon tea in your stateroom (upon request) and an Elite member pin.

Princess Cruises offers training for travel agents.  The top level you can reach is the Commodore level.  Once an agent has reached and maintained this level, they are given the Elite Level membership benefits when onboard the sailings.  Since I have reached the Commodore level, I will be able to report back to you as to how the Elite Level benefit work onboard.

Cruise Repeater Programs

In this day and age, everyone is competing for your loyalty.  For a long time we have had frequent flyer programs, grocery store reward plans and other discount cards.  Cruise lines are no different, but their programs are very different.

Many of these programs are automatic, meaning once you cruise you are automatically a member of the program.  Some, however must be applied for after your first cruise, like Royal Caribbean and Celebrity.  Your membership is automatic after you apply, but you must take the steps.

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