MIAMI -- Carnival Cruise Lines will roll out in January its version
of a "vacation club," where clients pay up-front for packages that
include points toward future cruises, plus discount coupons at
resorts and other benefits valid over a five-year period.
The program, called the Carnival Vacation Club, or CVC, will be
managed by an affiliate of the International Cruise & Excursion
Gallery, a Phoenix-based company that manages private vacation
clubs, and initially will be sold exclusively aboard two of
Carnival's ships -- the Carnival Conquest and the Carnival Legend.
Agents identified by their clients during the purchase make 10% on
the sale of the vacation packages.
The CVC offers four different packages, ranging in price from
$3,495 to $9,995, and they include cruise points; resort discount
certificates; Carnival VIP member benefits like priority check-in,
discounts at shoreside stores, and other perks. The number of
points required for each cruise is based on the ship, destination,
season and accommodation type.
Cruise points included in the various packages range from 14,000
to more than 40,000. As an example, Carnival said, a three-day
Bahamas cruise in an inside cabin would require approximately 1,800
points per person and a seven-day Caribbean cruise approximately
3,000 points per person.
In a statement, Carnival CEO Bob Dickinson said the 10% pay was
a positive because it "locks in" the client for five years, "thus
eliminating the incentive for them to purchase cruises from other
travel agencies during their membership period."
"Travel agents earn commissions [on the vacation packages] with
no marketing expenses," he added.
Carnival said the program was the first of its kind in the
To contact reporter Rebecca Tobin, send e-mail to [email protected].