Carnival Cruise Lines to Ban Smoking
Princess Cruises, Carnival Cruise Lines and Holland America all announced major changes to their smoking policies. Smokers will soon be banned from lighting up in cabins on all the ships of all three lines.
The Princess smoking ban, which also applies to cabin balconies, will become effective on all sailings departing after Jan. 15.
Carnival said its ban on smoking in all cabins would take effect Dec. 1. The line will still allow both cigarette and cigar smoking on cabin balconies. Holland America said its ban on smoking in cabins, but not on balconies, would take effect on Jan. 15.
Also effective today, Carnival said it was limiting smoking on its ships to dance clubs, designated areas within the casino and casino bar and certain sections on the open decks. All three lines said they were notifying those passengers already booked on cruises of their new policies. Officials said the moves reflect changing customer preferences. Carnival said it modified its policy as a result of recent guest surveys and onboard testing. Holland America said its new policy is “in keeping with the majority of guest preferences today.”
As for Princess, “Our consumer studies now show that smokers are a small minority of our passengers, and that the large majority of passengers value having their primary living space onboard smoke-free,” said Jan Swartz, the line’s executive vice president.
Princess spokeswoman Karen Candy says balconies were included in that line’s new policy “to enhance the onboard experience for the majority of passengers who don’t smoke.”
A fire that blackened 85 cabins on the Star Princess in the Caribbean in 2006 was blamed on a lit cigarette flung off a cabin balcony. The incident led to warnings about the need to carefully dispose of cigarettes.
Swartz said Princess would continue to welcome passengers who smoke on its ships, with smoking allowed in the Churchill’s cigar lounges, a section of the discos and casinos, and a portion of the open decks.
In a statement, Holland America likewise said guests who wish to smoke could continue to do so in designated areas both inside and on outside decks. After the new cabin bans take effect, passengers caught breaking the rules on any of the three lines will be charged a $250 cleaning fee, officials said.
Princess, Carnival and Holland America are all owned by Miami-based Carnival Corp.
Other lines that ban smoking in cabins and on balconies include Celebrity, Azamara, Regent Seven Seas and Oceania. Crystal bans smoking on stateroom balconies. Royal Caribbean and Disney Cruise Line ban smoking in cabins, but allow smoking on balconies.
Original Article: http://travel.usatoday.com/cruises/post/2011/06/smoking-ban-princess-carnival-holland-america/174594/1