Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Regent Seven Seas, Please Listen: Luxury Is Really About Service

I guess with a bit of irony I commented in my post this morning that Regent's trumpeting $40,000,000 of hardware upgrades on the Voyager and Mariner was good news, but there needs to be a significant improvement in the service department.

I was just taking a look over at the Cruise Critic boards and saw a new thread today speaking of services misses that were, quite disappointingly, similar to that which I have experienced over the past few years.  And the services misses were not from one person, but quite a few. 

Problems with wine stewards that can't be bothered and pour what they have in their hand; simple dining requests that are given a "NO" rather than making it magically happen; being told to wait for tea service rather than providing a few minutes early; leaving a passenger struggling on the dock with luggage; being rushed through dinner, etc., etc., etc.  

What makes me believe that things are not improving is that the people complaining did so with the qualification that it did not ruin their cruise, but that the level of service was simply inferior to most cruise lines and did not warrant the premium pricing. 

I do not want to beat a dead horse, but it just baffles me how Prestige Cruise Holdings is throwing money at hardware, but history shows that it is service, service and service that really makes the difference...not just in getting new passengers, but in keeping them and building loyalty.