Costa Cruises Crew Fed Up With Low Bandwidth And High Internet Prices

Mar 08, 2019

A crew member send us an email expressing his frustration about the onboard internet prices and low bandwidth on Costa Cruises ships. The crew member says “Costa Cruise is making huge revenue with the internet for the crew. The crew in Costa is paying 7 cents per minute for extremely slow internet. In all the other companies there are very convenient internet packages for the crew. Costa does not want to renounce to the revenue from the crew.  A Strike needs to be organized soon!”

In order to calm down the situation Costa Cruises Vice President Guest Experience and Onboard Sales, sent an email reviling the company’s plans to increase the bandwidth of up to 4 times than the current one starting from June 2019. The letter also explains that due to low bandwidth of 5,17 Kbps per Albd, Costa Europe ships can’t offer  Social Media Internet Packages to the crew like Costa Asia ships who have an average of 7,11 Kbps per Albd. According to the letter Costa plans to include the internet packages in the guests cruise ticket rates.

Here is the letter by Costa Cruises Vice President Guest Experience and Onboard Sales:

Dear all Colleagues,

When discussing the remarkable digital transformation we are now experiencing, the conversation inevitably turns to bandwidth and the experience now lived by our onboard Colleagues.

People are our main value, the main differentiator with the competitors, a key success element for the Guests' NPS, therefore, is a top priority to ensure that we fuel their motivation and guarantee their wellbeing. It is thus our firm intent to guarantee an adequate service and usability to all our Crew.

Demand for bandwidth is growing exponentially and it is driven by software, devices and user behaviors. Supply is limited by available bandwidth and extremely high costs.

In general, bandwidth consumption onboard is driven by 3 facts:

  • ·        the high number of guest and crew devices
  • ·        the applications those devices are using (such as surfing, streaming, file sharing, gaming)
  • ·        back-of-the-house operations (increasing number of systems that require connectivity)

Current situation and challenges

Costa Europe ships have 5,17 Kbps per Albd, while Costa Asia ships average 7,11 Kbps per Albd (reason why Costa Asia can offer Social packs to crew).

Internet circuit capacity is insufficient, high volume of guests and crew complaints, system is not able to manage peak data saturation periods, high troubleshooting efforts.

In order to offer a faster and more reliable internet experience and improve Guest & Crew satisfaction, Costa Group has approved an investment plan for FY19 which will provide about 4x more bandwidth on each ship starting from Q3.

To make the investment sustainable, more Guests will have to purchase internet packages (the costs it will be included in their cruise ticket rates). We are also pursuing new alternative solutions to the satellite connectivity. Confident that this communication reassures you on the plans of our Company that has clear the goal of continuously enhancing the onboard experience of our Crew.

Are you a crew member? Have an insider story you want to share? Send Us an email here.