Hits & Misses - Carnival Conversations In YVR

Ming Tappin

Carnival’s Arlene Marichal, Sr. Director Solutions & Special Services & Justin French welcomed the group to Carnival Conversations.

With returning Western Canada BDM Cindy Chau and baby Cameron.

Melt in your mouth short ribs escalates Carnival's food quality to a high level.

Stunning lobby of the Carnival Legend, we wish we could have seen more of the ship.

Travel agents were invited aboard the Carnival Legend in YVR last week to participate in the Carnival Conversations roadshow. YVR was the 3 rd stop of the Canadian tour, following YTO and YUL.

Justin French, Carnival's Managing Director International Sales presented a slideshow on the new Carnival Vista, followed by lunch and a Q&A session. Michelle Sutter, Senior Sales Leader of Carnival's fathom, piggy-backed on the opportunity to present on how travellers to the DR and Cuba can help make a difference to education, economic development and the environment of these countries.

Justin also announced the return of Cindy Chau, Carnival's BDM in Western Canada, on 21OCT from mat leave.

Unfortunately the agenda did not allow time for a tour of the Legend, which disappointed everyone. This is the 1st time the Legend has been in YVR, a  ship tour was highly anticipated. In my opinion this was a lost opportunity to showcase the Carnival hardware. Many also felt that the Carnival Vista slide show, although very informative, should have been done as a separate webinar, and using that time for a ship tour instead.

On the "Conversations" front, it appears that YVR agents did not have many burning issues with Carnival, unlike our very vocal American counterparts. One agent suggested a single sign-on to access all Carnival online products, and another asked about Carnival's tight policy on bringing onboard bottled water and non-alcoholic beverages. The Carnival team discussed their revamped group policy and monitored Canadian exchange rate, and promises an exciting new air program on the horizon.

On a final note, the lunch served in the dining room was superb and in my opinion one of the best I have had onboard. This may be surprising to some, but Carnival has come a very long way in improving its food and service quality and overall experience. The stigma of the neon-clad party ship image is etched in most travel agents' minds; today's Carnival is toned down, refined and definitely worthy of a 2 nd look.

Arlene Marichal & Sheila LeBlanc, Senior Director Trade & Community
Relations co-hosted YVR’s Carnival Conversations

Ming Tappin is a cruise veteran with over 20 years’ experience in the industry and has sailed on 36 cruises and counting. Based in Vancouver, Ming is Owner of YourCruise Coach Consulting.

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