“Lemme here you say…fight the power…we’ve got to fight the powers that be.” …Public Enemy

So, I just got back from a Royal Caribbean Cruise. My father purchased berths for 4 families, including mine, to sail in the Caribbean for 7 days. I suppose I shouldn’t complain since my family got a complimentary vacation but since this is a blog post, you gotta know I’m gonna complain about something :.)

People in our industry know there are two types of hotels…those that offer free WiFi and those that charge a small daily fee for the privilege. As much as we grumble about paying for WiFi, most travelers have pretty much accepted the charge as a necessary evil.

Royal Caribbean does things differently. It charges 55 cents a minute for WiFi.

55 Cents a minute for WiFi.

55 Cents a minute for WiFi.

Charging 55 Cents a minute for WiFi is the equivalent of giving somebody the middle finger and slowly waving it in their face. It’s true that you could pre-purchase bulk minutes but no deal they offered drives the cost lower than 32 cents a minute.

Not only is the WiFi expensive, due to the necessary satellite Internet technology on the boats, it’s considerably slower than conventional broadband.

I clearly know that Royal Caribbean makes a high margin on upselling services above and beyond the basic cruise cost and I have no problem with that. And, I noticed that people were paying 55 Cents per minute to screw around on Facebook (…no sympathy for hosing those folks with a big bill). However, for those people such as me who need continual Internet Access 24/7 as part of their livelihood, a Royal Caribbean (and other companies) Cruise is not a feasible option for a vacation.

I did have some issues while on vacation that I needed to deal with. Fortunately, within 4 blocks of where the ship docked in San Juan, I found a Starbucks where for the price of 1 drink, I was able to get 3 ½ hours of free WiFi that enabled me to get my necessary work done.

If Royal Caribbean and other cruise lines care about attracting dedicated online professionals on their vacations, they need to offer reasonably priced unlimited Internet Access. I paid almost $70 for doing little more than checking my stats & my email for a week and I’m F***** P***** off about it. I will never set foot on another cruise ship unless and until I can get the quality and quantity of Internet Access to which I am accustomed.

Todd Mintz
Todd Mintz knows PPC...knows Social Media...knows SEO...knows Blogging...knows Domaining...and knows them all real well. He is the SEM Consigliere for 3Q Digital and is also a Director & Founding Member of SEMpdx: Portland, Oregon's Search Engine Marketing Association, and he can be found here on Twitter and Facebook.
Todd Mintz

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