Here's How Carnival Corporation & PLC is Delivering a Medal Winning Customer Experience

brought to you by WBR Insights

Beginning life as Carnival Cruise Line in 1972, Carnival Corporation & PLC was formed following the acquisition of P&O Princess Cruises in 2003.

Carnival Corporation & PLC is the largest travel leisure provider in the world, with market capital of $43.9 billion placing it at #270 on the Forbes Global 2000 list. Composed of two merged companies named Carnival Corporation and Carnival PLC respectively, the business is listed on both the London and New York Stock Exchange, and is the only company in the world to be indexed on the S&P 500 and the FTSE 100.

In the business of delivering luxurious cruise vacations, a company's reputation is made or broken based on its ability to provide a first-class customer experience. People work hard for their money, so when the time comes for a holiday, they want to know the company they choose to facilitate their break takes it seriously.

It was this responsibility which led Carnival to team up with Nytec to create a new device which would help them create a truly unique and personalized customer experience for all their guests - The Ocean Medallion.

"Nytec was among the earliest partners engaged to help us bring to life experiences powered by Ocean Medallions. We presented them with a complex set of design and engineering challenges necessary to transform the vacation guest experience. And their team of world-class designers, engineers, and manufacturing experts translated our complex vision into compellingly simple, elegant, and viable solutions," said Michael Jungen, senior vice president of guest experience design and technology for Carnival Corporation. "Nytec's expertise and hands-on approach supported us end-to-end in delivering a guest-centric, Internet of Things approach to an unprecedented and harmonious guest experience."

The Ocean Medallion

The size of a quarter, and looking like something straight out of an episode of Star Trek, The Ocean Medallion is an Internet of Things (IoT) enabled wearable device which opens the cruise experience up for Carnival's clientele in new and innovative ways. The device can be worn on a chain, bracelet, keyring, wrist-strap, or even simply carried in the pocket.

"This is a fundamental new guest interaction that spans every element of the cruise experience," says Carnival Corp.'s John Padgett, Chief Experience and Innovation Officer. Padgett was the brains behind Disney's incredibly successful MagicBand. However, he says the Ocean Medallion blows his earlier invention out of the water.

Delivered to customers by mail ahead of the cruise, at its most basic, the Ocean Medallion functions like a wristband. Radio frequency identification (RFID) functionality makes terminal check-in, embarking, and disembarking seamless processes, and allows staff to ID customers in a heartbeat and provide a personalized welcome. The medallion also allows guests access to their staterooms, with no cards or keys in sight. Once inside, the device can be used to control the lights, air conditioning, and more.

Once guests are settled in and the cruise proper has begun, the Ocean Medallion begins to really come into its own. As guests order food and drinks from wherever they are onboard the ship, the device's location services tell the serving staff exactly where the customer is - right down to individual sun loungers. With modern cruise ships being larger than ever before, the medallion's location functionality also helps guests navigate their way around.

The Ocean Medallion also enables guests to make purchases, as well as suggesting activities based on individual profiles. It extends gaming beyond the casino, and activates terminals dotted around the ship which display personalized photo galleries and other media. The core philosophy of the Ocean Medallion is to ensure every guest has a truly personal vacation and makes the most of their time onboard.

"Our focus is exceeding guest expectations in ways that cannot be anticipated or duplicated. What makes a Medallion Class experience so special is the level of personalization," says Padgett. "We've gone well beyond conventional guest segmentation with this creation, where every guest is unique, and every guest can represent many different personas within a single vacation or across multiple vacations. The Ocean Medallion enables experience delivery to be personalized and customized dynamically to each guest in real-time."

Full Steam Ahead

It's clear Carnival Corporation & PLC is paving the way for a truly augmented customer experience with the Ocean Medallion. The blending of IoT technology and a superior customer experience is a sure recipe for success.

The last word goes to Jan Swartz, president of Princess Cruises.

"With this innovation, from the moment our guests first engage with us, their experiences will be powered by their preferences, from extra pillows to their favorite drink. Services they desire will be delivered seamlessly, in real time, often without asking, where and when they want them. At the end of the day, the Ocean Medallion takes vacations to an entirely new level."

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