Carnival Cruise Lines announced that they would be increasing the fee to eat at the a la carte steakhouse on many of their ships.
Previously, passengers could pay $5 to eat in the alternative/specialty steakhouses. You will now be charged $35 per person. A family of four could have had a very nice meal for $20, now it will cost $140, Yikes! Carnival Ships that include steakhouses are: Carnival Spirit, Carnival Pride, Carnival Legend, Carnival Miracle, Carnival Conquest, Carnival Glory, Carnival Valor, Carnival Liberty, Carnival Freedom, Carnival Splendor, Carnival Dream, Carnival Magic and Carnival Breeze. The Carnival Destiny will be receiving a steakhouse later this year during her extensive makeover process. A spokesperson from Carnival is quoted as justifying the hike with the following: "The increase was necessitated as a result of higher food costs and is consistent with other alterative restaurant charges within the cruise industry," Carnival says.
While Carnival is correct, as far as being in-line with other industry a la carte restaurants, it still is quite a hike. Most all-inclusive resorts have more than 1 a la carte restaurant where you pay an additional fee to get a special meal outside of the already include food and drinks. The resorts usually have a steakhouse, a japanese restaurant or a romantic bistro that charges a per person fee of around $30-$50. However, with this fee, the adult beverages are included. With Carnival they only offer a house wine other adult drinks will be charged to you at the overpriced bar prices.
Carnival is making extremely high margins on drink so while we understand a fee hike due to food costs going up, we think it is a little higher than other vacation options, since you are paying more and getting less.
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