Of all industries, few were as battered by pandemic shut-downs than international cruising. Once the virus hit, those fleets of luxury ships were banned from operating out of U.S. ports, not that anyone was inclined to travel. Even now as most aspects of the U.S. economy are in a recovery mode, those fancy liners remain out of service.
But one cruise line is optimistic about prospects of getting the go-ahead to again welcome Covid-weary passengers. It’s Princess Cruises. Once its well-heeled passengers board they’ll find not only the familiar services and amenities, but the addition of one new to cruising.
Upon its return to service, every one of Princess’ 14 liner fleet will feature land-like connectivity as part of its MedallionNet Wi-Fi service. For those passengers wanting to combine work with their vacation, this service will make possible remote working, distance learning, the opportunity to securely conduct important transactions as well as video conferencing. And the communications will reach all of Princess Cruises’ global destinations
All these features will become standard In late 2021, when Princess’ connectivity partner – SES – will begin to launch a new constellation of satellites.
According to the company, each Princess MedallionClass ship transmits enough bandwidth per vessel to guarantee a superior connection for each guest and the personal device they are using. MedallionNet’s seamless integration ensures guests can work from their deck chairs as efficiently and effectively as in their office, with access to their cloud-based enterprise applications such as storage, videoconferencing, and email. And because there is an access point in every stateroom, as well as all public areas, guests can move freely around the ship as they work without any frustrating signal drops. Cost will be $9.99 a day for one device and $14.99 per day for up to four devices.
As more than 40 percent of the American workforce continues to work remotely, and with an expected 36.2 million Americans are projected to telecommute by 2025, Princess Cruises figures that an at sea office has never been more feasible and certainly remains very desirable to many.
And that’s not all, either. According to Princess Cruises the bandwidth capacity not only delivers superior Wi-Fi service levels, but also powers the Princess MedallionClass experience onboard. The cruise lines’ OceanMedallion, a convenient, tech-forward wearable device, replaces the traditional cruise card.
Princess says that this will significantly expand touch-free options and personalization on board. Working professionals will appreciate features and amenities such as keyless stateroom entry, on-demand food, beverage, and retail items delivered anywhere onboard and permit a passenger to find a companion or family member elsewhere on the ship.
The cruise company recently confirmed sailing dates for many of its ships starting in July. Those include the Regal Princess, Diamond Princess, Caribbean Princess, Emerald Princess, Enchanted Princess, Majestic Princess, and Ruby Princess, with other ships to follow from ports around the world starting in August.