Saturday, April 26, 2008

Cruise Fuel Charges Going Up?

For one cruise line, they have. Norwegian has raised their fuel surcharges from $7 to $9 per person per day and tacked on a $1 per person per day for additional guests in the cabin after the first and second passenger. The question now, is whether or not the other cruise lines will follow suit. Its difficult to tell. Unlike the airline industry, cruise lines are not known for playing follow the leader, but rather try to be as different as possible. That mind set was broken with the onset of the fuel charge last fall. When you take a step back, and look at things over the last eight months it is kind of funny how the cruise lines have taken on a business strategy that the airlines are known for, and now the airlines are working with what could be considered a cruise line strategy with the a la carte method of pricing. When the cruise lines introduced the fuel charges originally last October/November, it did not go over well, and even ended up causing a lawsuit and many passengers being reimbursed for the charges they were hit with for cruises that they already had booked. It will not be a big surprise if the other major players take a wait and see approach before making changes of their own this time.

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