Rein to leave Carnival Cruise Line

Joni Rein

Carnival Cruise Line announced that its vice president of worldwide sales, Joni Rein, will depart after seven years at Carnival. Rein will step down Aug. 15 but consult for Carnival for the balance of the year.

Rein joined Carnival in 2008 as vice president of field sales from the North American office of Costa Cruises, where she had been vice president of sales development. She was promoted to her current title in 2009.

As head of sales, it fell to Rein to rally travel agents, including some who were disenchanted with Carnival, following the Carnival Triumph engine room fire in 2012. Rein spearheaded the Carnival Conversations program, a series of steps to repair agent relations at Carnival and implement more agent-friendly policies.

“My decision to depart the company was a difficult one,” Rein said in a statement, “but I feel it’s the right time with brand and trade sentiment at their current levels and an incredible executive leadership team in place, all of whom I respect tremendously.”

Carnival said no replacement for Rein has yet been named.

Carnival: Agents didn’t get paid due to ‘glitch’

Carnival Cruise Line has fixed a “glitch” in its system that prevented the payment of commissions and refunds, according to an email that Joni Rein, the line’s vice president of worldwide sales, sent to travel agents on Wednesday.

Commissions and refunds due Jan. 22 will be paid Friday, Feb. 6, along with commissions and refunds processed between Jan. 29 and Feb. 4, Carnival said. Commissions and payments due for the following week, Jan. 23 through Jan. 29, will be paid Friday, Feb. 13, along with the current week’s payments.

One agent said that Carnival was three weeks behind on paying commissions to her agency, and another said that Carnival had missed one week of payments to his agency.

An agent told Travel Weekly that Carnival didn’t know about the lapse until agencies began calling the cruise line. She said that she had to call the cruise line and her sales rep to get a response.

She said Carnival responded with two emails: one on Friday, Jan. 30, saying it was working “’round the clock” to fix the problem, the second on Monday, Feb. 2, saying that it was having trouble fixing the problem because of Wave season.

On Wednesday, the agency received the email from Rein. It was a mass email to travel professionals and included information on the updated payment schedule.

“We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and thank you for your understanding,” Rein wrote in the email. “Most importantly, we thank you for your continued support.”

Carnival promotion rewards Galveston cruise bookings

By Tom Stieghorst
Carnival Cruise Lines said travel agents can earn triple the normal amount of points in its rewards program by booking cruises from Galveston during July.

The line said the promotion, running through July 31, will give agents 450 points for new online bookings from Texas ports, up from the standard 150 points.

Beginning at the 2,500-point level, the points can be redeemed for Carnival logo items, $50 and $100 gift cards, iPads and other items.

Carnival will transfer a third ship, Carnival Freedom, to Galveston beginning in February.

Joni Rein, executive vice president of worldwide sales at Carnival, said the points boost was a thank you to agents that have helped Carnival build business from Galveston.