MIAMI (January 2, 2008) – Carnival Cruise Lines has been named the number one cruise line in Southern Living Magazine’s 2008 Readers Choice Awards.
The annual awards are based on surveys available to the publication’s 15 million readers who are asked to designate their number one choice in a variety of travel-related categories. Carnival was cited as the preferred cruise line more than any other cruise operator.
Carnival’s “Fun Ships” were recognized for providing excellent activities and entertainment options, an exceptional array of fine quality cuisine, and convenient Southern U.S. departure points, with 17 ships departing from eight ports throughout Florida, Alabama, Texas and Louisiana. “The convenience is a real winner and a great reason to keep going back again for more of what their ships have to offer,” said Wanda McKinney, Southern Living’s associate travel editor.
“We take a great deal of pride in providing our guests with wonderful vacation memories and have made a tremendous investment in continually updating and enhancing the ‘Fun Ship’ vacation experience. To have these efforts acknowledged by the discerning readers of Southern Living is extremely gratifying,” said Vicki Freed, Carnival’s senior vice president of sales and guest services.
Over the past five years alone, Carnival launched five new 110,000-ton “Fun Ships” – the largest in its fleet – and rolled out the $250 million “Evolutions of Fun” shipboard refurbishment program that includes extensive renovations for its eight Fantasy-class ships. New amenities for these vessels include the Carnival WaterWorks aqua parks, Serenity adults-only areas and totally redesigned main pool areas.
“With exciting new ship projects and guest-driven initiatives such as ‘Evolutions of Fun,’ Carnival is more committed than ever to providing our guests with fun, high quality, memorable vacations – all at an incredible value,” Freed added.
Carnival is the largest and most popular cruise line in the world, with 22 "Fun Ships" operating voyages ranging from three to 18 days in length to the Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii, the Panama Canal, Canada, New England, Bermuda, Europe, the Greek Isles and South America.
The line currently has three new ships on order, including the 113,300-ton Carnival Splendor, set to launch Carnival’s first Northern European cruise program July 13, 2008, and the 130,000-ton Carnival Dream and Carnival Magic – to be the largest “Fun Ships” ever constructed when they enter service in June 2009 and October 2011, respectively.