CCL-Carnival Cruise Line sharply increasing service gratuities and WiFi charges

   January 6, 2023 ,   Cruise Industry

CCL-Carnival Cruise Line - the world's second-largest cruise shipping company (after RCI-Royal Caribbean International) is sharply hiking the automatic gratuities/staff service charges it adds to passenger bills for 2023.

In a notice sent to booked guests, the Miami-based CCL said it would raise the automatic gratuity fee it levies on customers by over 10% to US$16 per person per day for those staying in most staterooms.

CCL also plans to increase the onboard Wi-Fi charges, with the cost of single-device plans soaring by 25%.

The price hikes for the Wi-Fi/gratuities are taking effect on January 16th/April 1st, respectively.

CCL's current gratuity rate is US$14.50 for passengers in standard staterooms and US$16.50 for passengers in suites.

The rates taking effect on April 1st will be US$16 per person/per day for standard cabins and US$18 for guests in suites.

Carnival Jubilee cruise ship

The news of the coming service charge increase comes just weeks after Princess Cruises, a sister line to Carnival, hiked its service fees by over 10%, and just days after a 25% increase in NCL-Norwegian's service charge took effect.

Carnival already pushed up the cost of some of its restaurants over the past year by as much as 26% and the cost of its Chef's Table experience by ~24%. The cost of drinks packages is up significantly, too, in some cases by over 15%.

The service fee increase is the brand's 2nd in less than a year. Carnival also raised service fees in May 2022, from US$14 to US$14.50 per person per day, which is a 3.6% increase.

According to the line, in some cases, guests who are unhappy with the service they receive can adjust the amount of daily gratuities posted to their accounts while onboard by visiting the Reception/guest services desk.