Carnival Cruise Lines, the world’s largest cruise operator, has re-engineered its popular carnival.com Web site, which now offers a host of new and expanded features, including enhanced site navigation, streaming video, personalized content tailored to each visitor, and more 360-degree “virtual tours” of the “Fun Ship” fleet.The announcement was made today at the TravelCom Expo in New York City, the travel industry’s defining event for marketing and distribution strategies.
Developed by Carnival’s in-house Web architects and SBI.Razorfish, the leading independent interactive consultant, the new carnival.com encompasses more than 1,000 Web pages, along with a comprehensive new search engine, detailed port of call and shore excursion information, updated pricing features, and a variety of new visuals, with colorful images mirroring the line’s current television ad campaign. Visitors can also download Carnival screensavers and play “Fun Ship”-themed games on-line.
“The Internet is an indispensable tool for vacation planning and this new upgrade has made one of the travel industry’s most visited Web sites even better, with more user-friendly features that provide current and prospective guests with a wealth of helpful information about the ‘Fun Ship’ vacation experience,” said Bob Dickinson, Carnival president and CEO.
Added Susan Kidwell, client partner at SBI.Razorfish in Ft. Lauderdale, “Both first-time cruisers and loyal Carnival guests will benefit from a streamlined research and purchase process and the delivery of richer, more up-to-date and relevant content. In developing the new carnival.com, we wanted to develop an integrated online experience that would exemplify the same best-in-class features and service that customers have come to expect from Carnival.”
Taking advantage of SBI.Razorfish’s innovations in data-gathering technology, guests who are booked on a “Fun Ship” cruise are greeted with personalized information when they log in. In addition to a detailed booking history, including ship, itinerary and stateroom number, guests are directed to content specifically tailored to their particular voyage, with port of call information, shore excursion selections, Bon Voyage gifts and various other prompts.
Emphasizing the importance of travel agents in the cruise vacation purchase, carnival.com is the only cruise industry Web site that aligns guests’ booking information with their travel agency contact information on the navigational bar, continually reinforcing travel agents in the consumers’ mindset while on-line.
Other new features include an expansive new drop-down shore excursion menu that includes a complete listing of more than 900 shore tours, with in-depth information such as activity level, tour duration, and pricing, all easily accessed by a dynamic search engine.
The new site includes an enhanced booking engine and special “Fun Ship” offers, updated four times daily. There’s also a new group travel feature highlighting the many advantages of sailing with a large group, from value- added amenities to volume booking discounts.
The site also includes a past guest section where visitors can review their cruise history, receive special past guest rates, and read an on-line version of Currents, the line’s past-guest publication.