Costa Cruises to Implement Zero Tolerance Alcohol Policy For Officers

Aug 12, 2017

Zero alcohol policy for all no discrimination. This comment on the social media by Costa Cruises Chief Electrical Engineer Roberto Pibiri sparked huge debate between crew and officers. As of August 19th, Costa Cruises will implement zero tolerance alcohol policy for employees working in the engine department, bridge officers, medical and deck department. This means that they are not allowed have alcohol in the crew bar, disco or any bars aboard the ship.  If the officer is tested positive on alco-test he or she will be terminated from the company. The old policy was set at .04% blood alcohol concentration as the legal limit, which allowed employees to have two beers.

From the unofficial reports, there will be two variations of the alcohol policy. On the cruise ships Costa Clasica and Neoclassica there will be no alcohol served at all in the crew bar for officers and crew. For the other vessels such as Fascinosa and Luminosa will serve alcohol in the crew bar but not for the medical staff, engine department, deck department and bridge officers.

The Discrimination

The rules of the game in the cruise industry are changing and that’s a fact. As the supervisors love to say “If you don’t like it go home.” Now the tables have turned, and the officers feel discriminated. The definition of discrimination is “Unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things, especially on the grounds of race, age, or sex.” Meaning that there was always discrimination on board. For example, the crew is only allowed to eat in crew mess – officers and staff are allowed to eat in crew mess, staff mess, officers mess guest buffet, guest dining room, and specialty restaurants. Officers and staff are allowed in all public guest areas including bars, disco, and the theater – crew is not allowed. Officers have wide single bed cabins with porthole (window) staff has also nice cabins, sometimes with porthole – crew sleeps in cabins below the water. Staff and Officers can even order room service – crew can't. All this is discrimination however on board they love to call it privileges. These are the rules set by the cruise lines and they have nothing to do with people on board no matter if they are officers, staff or crew.

Is this right thing to do?

My opinion is that this is absolutely wrong. Prohibition has never led to anything good. However, as one Italian officer said “The problem isn't the company. The problem is the people and the few that have abused the alcohol policy. It's our fault, not the company… There are many other cases where we've been "punished" take the buffet for example... now you have to pay. Why? Because every time in the Mediterranean employees brings 10-15 visitors to eat for free. The problem is that we can't control ourselves in such simple things.”

Will other Carnival Brands follow this policy?

Costa Cruises is a brand of Carnival Corporation & plc, which also owns Princess Cruises, Cunard Line, Holland America Line, P&O Cruises and P&O Cruises Australia, Seabourn, AIDA and other cruise lines. If this policy proves to be successful then it might be implemented on all cruise lines operated by Carnival.