It's the scourge of the sun-and-fun vacation: The perfectly placed deck chair, claimed for hours only by an artfully mussed towel and a John Grisham novel.
But now, Carnival Cruise Lines is testing a program to reclaim "saved" deck chairs.
John Heald, the line's senior cruise director, wrote on his Facebook page that starting on the Carnival Breeze crew would police "seat saving" by walking the decks and placing a sticker with the current time on any chair "unused but saved with towels, books, shoes, baby Yaks or underpants."
Forty minutes later, if the chair is still unused the crew will remove the articles and take them to the towel station by the main pool, Heald said.
"We went with 40 minutes, as we felt that this was a fair amount of time if guests get up to eat, drink, pee, swim or slide," Heald wrote.
"It has been a subject discussed over and over again, and it has been so because it continues to be a concern," he wrote. "But now is not the time to dwell in the past but in the future, and that future is today. The Carnival Breeze is the test ship for a new commitment to stopping this, and we started today."
The post had close to 275 comments and more than 500 "likes" in less than three hours after the post went up, and most were overwhelmingly positive. "The chogs (chair hogs?) are just going to have to get with the program," one commenter quipped.
The announcement was made to Breeze passengers on his morning show, on the in-cabin TVs and by shipboard announcements made by Heald, he said.
Heald wrote that the Breeze crew would test the program and make adjustments, and then roll it out to the rest of the Carnival fleet.