Norwegian Testing Room Service Delivery Fee
(Photo courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Line)
Norwegian Cruise Line is testing reaction to a service fee for room service delivery.
The “convenience charge” is being charged on two ships as the line enhances its room service menu, Norwegian President and COO Andy Stuart said in a travel agent webinar March 31.
The service fee is $7.95 per order — not per selection or per person — on the Norwegian Breakaway and $4.95 on Norwegian Getaway. There is no charge for delivery to the luxury Haven suite complex and no charge on the rest of the fleet at this time.
The pilot program includes an upgraded menu, especially for breakfast, adding hot items to a menu that currently features mostly cold options such as cereal and pastries. The enhanced menu includes eggs prepared scrambled, over easy, hard-boiled and poached, and sides such as breakfast potatoes, grilled tomatoes, bacon, sausage and turkey sausage. Also offered are oatmeal and Cream of Wheat.
A wider variety of options are offered on the 24-hour menu as well, Stuart said.
While many passengers resist cover charges as an example of nickel-and-diming, room service delivery fees are not unprecedented. Norwegian has charged a $3.95 charge for deliveries made between midnight and 5 a.m. for several years now (Royal Caribbean International does as well). Norwegian also charges $5 for a pizza delivery anywhere on the ship. Carnival Cruise Line has a line on the room service delivery receipt for a gratuity.
But word leaked out online about a room service fee before Stuart’s announcement that it was a test. It predictably generated hundreds of comments on Cruise Critic’s bulletin boards.
“Even coffee and pastry are $7.95??? NCL has one of the most limited room service menus,” reads one comment. “Sounds to me as if they are trying to do away with it completely. That is an outlandish charge, even if the new menu has complete meals. I hope it is not fleet-wide but just an experiment on the Breakaway.”
“This is very disappointing!” another comment says. “I was so looking forward to a light breakfast on our balcony while in Alaska. I guess I will pack a tray, head up to the buffet and schlep everything back to my cabin.”
Norwegian also posted a notice about the room service fee in its Frequently Asked Questions section on its website. It remains to be seen whether a delivery fee will become permanent and how much it would be.
More by Theresa Norton
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