Your cruise comments really do matter

At the end of every cruise, on just about every cruise line, passengers are asked to rate the whole experience through guest comment cards. Cruise lines use the information captured through this process for a whole bunch of things. Passenger comments tell them how they are doing in areas from dining to housekeeping to shore excursions and more. Changes in the way cruise lines do business are often the direct result of what passengers have to say about it all. A good example of what is done with this information was released yesterday by Carnival Cruise Lines.

The embarkation team at any cruise port has a big job to do in a very short amount of time. When a ship comes in to a home port, the port that sailings begin and end in, there is a lot to be done. A great deal of the work is behind the scenes stuff that passengers don’t see like re-supplying the ship with food, supplies, fuel and the like.

Getting the old passengers off the ship so the new ones can come on is a lot of work to be done in a very short period of time. That’s what the embarkation team does and it is one of the seemingly trivial parts of Carnival’s guest comment card survey. Filling out that form at the end of a cruise that section is probably a bit of a blur to most guests unless they had a bad experience. But it’s not trivial to the cruise line and Carnival recently recognized the embarkation team at Port Canaveral.

The Carnival Port Canaveral embarkation team once again earned top honors in the company’s annual guest comment card survey, which ranks embarkation personnel from the lines’ 11 year-round home-ports in a variety of service and process-related categories. This marks the sixth time that Carnival’s Port Canaveral team has earned the award in the past 13 years.

“For Port Canaveral to be named Carnival’s ‘Embarkation Port of the Year’ six times in 13 years is a testament to the commitment to superior service of this hard-working group and the spirit of cooperation that exists between our guest logistics team and the port’s operations personnel,” said Milly Martin, senior director of guest logistics for Carnival Cruise Lines.

Under the direction of Guest Logistics Manager Maritza Ferry, the 135-member team was recognized for their outstanding professionalism, enthusiasm, and friendliness while assisting guests embarking on the two Carnival ships that sail from Port Canaveral year-round.

How they do getting guests on and off the ship is important to passengers and the cruise port authority too. Nothing happens until the ship has been cleared by port authorities. That process can be slowed down for a number of reasons including an inspection by the U.S. Coast Guard, Customs or Immigration officials. But once the ship has been cleared, the test of an embarkation team begins in earnest.

“The dedication to service from Carnival’s embarkation team and the port’s operations staff again proves to be a winning combination,” said Stan Payne, CEO, Port Canaveral. “From the time of arrival in our parking lots to their departure post-cruise, passengers benefit from the joint efforts of the team of professionals at Port Canaveral working to provide a quality vacation experience from start to finish.”

So yes, when they tell you on the ship that your comments are important, believe that. The hard work those people do to get thousands of people on and off a ship is worthy of a comment or two.