Carnival Cruise Line is testing a new method of delivering Internet service to guests, giving them a choice of three packages based on their online activities instead of charging guests for minutes used.
Carnival is piloting the new Internet packages on three ships: the Freedom, Sunshine and Breeze.
The least expensive option is the social media package, which enables guests to use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat and Pinterest for a flat fee of $5 per day or $25 per voyage during the initial testing period.
Those who want to check email and surf the Web can upgrade to a value package for $16 per day or $60 per cruise.
A premium package provides “the fastest available connection speed,” said Carnival, and is for heavy Internet usage. Those who want to use the Skype video calling application must buy the premium package. It costs $25 per day or $99 per cruise.
Guests do not have to log on or off while their plan lasts.
On Carnival’s other ships, the cruise line charges $29 for 45 minutes, $59 for 120 minutes, $89 for 240 minutes and $159 for 480 minutes.
Also, the cruise line is piloting a free smartphone app on the Carnival Breeze. The app provides a searchable deck plan, information about restaurants, the guest’s Sail & Sign account balance, itinerary details and a schedule of shipboard events.
A chat feature that costs $5 for the entire cruise enables guests to exchange messages with traveling companions.
The mobile app and new Internet packages will roll out to additional ships following successful completion of pilot programs, Carnival said.