MSC Cruises New 'Better Internet' Program Sparks Concerns Among Crew Members

Aug 09, 2023

The recent changes in internet policies, particularly the introduction of MSC Cruises' "Better Internet" program, have left some crew members grappling with a new reality. A crew member, who wishes to remain anonymous, shared their thoughts with Crew Center regarding the new "Better Internet" program introduced recently on MSC cruise ships. This program, launched alongside the promise of a salary increase, introduces a new internet structure that provides 5GB of free internet data per month to each crew member. Beyond this allocation, additional data can be purchased at a significant cost – 40€ for an extra 5GB.

One aspect highlighted by the crew member is the delicate balance between connectivity and affordability. The new internet program's pricing structure has led to a perception that the salary increase to crew members is merely being redirected toward internet costs. The unintended consequence of this perception is that crew members are left feeling that their raise is being offset by the need to stay connected.

This is the message and thoughts shared by the crew member:

“I wanted to share about the new “Better Internet” that is part of the new “Better Program" on board MSC ships. Only a few days after the salary increase, which for some departments was very low and for others even none, the crew members received information about the start of the new internet program as well. Basically, they reinstate the internet on payment. Crew members receive 5GB per month for free and then there are some add-ons at very high cost.

An additional 5GB is 40€. It is advised that these 5 free gigabytes are for getting in touch with families with the calculation that they last for about 4/5 hours in video calls. However, nobody is thinking that many crew use Internet also to work. Many departments have team chats and it is important to check it in case the head of departments say something important. An additional problem is that to avoid getting ur free gigs eaten up the crew needs to deactivate the internet and turn it only for use which is leading them to being totally disconnected from the world, any family emergency, or important informations from shoreside. From the crew’s side it really looks like they’ve given a salary increase just to spend it in internet.”