Greetings Carnival Cruise Line fans!

September 24, 2015 -

John Heald

I’m Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line and I am delighted to be “guest blogging” here today so I could share with you one of the more rewarding experiences I’ve had since joining Carnival earlier this year.


St. Jude Day of Play8

Last week, I had the pleasure and privilege of participating in Carnival’s annual “Day of Play” at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis. During the Dr. Seuss-themed day (modeled after our popular Seuss at Sea program on our ships) we presented the hospital with a check for $5 million, representing the funds we have raised for St. Jude over the past two years – raising this money a full two years ahead of schedule I’m proud to say – and also pledged to raise an additional $10 million over the next 5 years.  With this new commitment, Carnival will have donated $18 million to St. Jude by 2020!

While I am beyond proud of Carnival’s financial support of St. Jude over the years, on that day we were able to provide something perhaps even more meaningful – a day of fun for many children and their families. We applaud the work that St. Jude does on a daily basis and I am proud that we were able to play a role in bringing joy and happiness to dozens of kids: from the “Seuss-a-Palooza Parade” and Story Time with a spirited reading of Cat in the Hat to other activities like face painting, bean bag toss, a photo booth, arts and crafts, dancing and more.

Carnival is in the business of creating memories. Our founder, Ted Arison’s vision was to make a cruise vacation accessible to everyone. Many of you know that Carnival’s mission is to provide fun and memorable vacation experiences to all of our guests and our team members both shore side and shipboard do just that every day. But one of the things I love best about this company is our focus on giving back – in fact this week at our Corporate Headquarters in Miami we are hosting our first-ever Corporate Relay for Life event where our shore side team has raised over $80,000 for the American Cancer Society. And our St. Jude partnership is another great example of our commitment to charitable giving. I want to thank everyone on the Carnival team who joined me on this day and would like to thank the team at St. Jude for allowing us to be a part of it. I would also like to thank the many Carnival guests who contribute to St Jude through the various programs we have on board – we couldn’t do it without you!

For me, personally, it was also a day of great perspective and reflection. It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of everyday life – stressing over life’s inconveniences like our long commute or the bad weather. But seeing the smiles on their faces and hearing the laughter in their voices reminds you to hold on to what’s most important. Making people happy and having fun is what we are all about and I’m so glad that we were able to bring some Carnival “FUN” to the children and families of St. Jude!


Comment Policy

Look, friends — there are a few things you should remember before you comment. The space below is for you to post your comments about the post I've just written above. Now, while I may not be able to reply to your comment below, I do sit in my underpants almost every morning and read everything that is here. So feel free to comment on the comments and then if someone wants to comment on the comment to the comment then go ahead as well. Please be courteous, unless the poster is French...........then you can say whatever you want.

41 Responses to Greetings Carnival Cruise Line fans!

  1. Kimberly Vaughan says:

    I am so proud to say that on every cruise my husband and I take part in the cruise for St. Jude charity. I love that my favorite cruise line helps such a great charity and will continue to support this cause.
    Thank you

  2. John Martin says:

    Well said. We all get caught up in our everyday life and it is good to see through your vision how we could step outside the box and embrace some small moments that really can make someone else’s day better. Kudos to Carnival and their charity contributions, glad we could help a little.

  3. dixie white says:

    I will be on the Paradise next month – hoping there is a St. Jude party on this cruise. I still wear my red bracelet that I purchased last year. Keep up the great work Carnival!

  4. Jack Conway says:

    Ms Duffy Thank you for the support for St Jude and your smile in the picture shows you had a great time with the kids. Thanks you and please thank John for the time he spends making sure the cruisers are happy

  5. Linda (Mom of DJ) says:

    A big THANK YOU to Carnival for their support of St Jude.

    As the mother of a special needs son, we are blessed that his issues are not life threatening.

    We have found a wonderful way to thank the officers, staff and crew of a ship is to dedicate a brick in their honor.

    Any group, who are looking for a cruise project to contribute to, should consider doing this.

    Wouldn’t it be wonderful to one day have a brick for every ship!


  6. Barbara Burns says:

    I am proud to call Carnival ships my second home. Proud of what the corporation does to truly give back to St Jude Hospital and communities around the globe. CARNIVAL not only creates lifetime memories for guests but to every child and family it touches through it’s outreach.

  7. Patrick huzinec says:

    We are cruising out of San Juan Puerto Rico to New Orleans Louisiana in mid January. Any thoughts about excusion

  8. Tanya Fisher says:

    As a parent of young child, who was born 10 weeks early, thank you for very generous donation, and God bless you.

  9. Phil says:

    Mobile , Al when and what ships will port from Mobile . How long will the cruises be and where will they go.

  10. Darleen Cherry says:

    Christine, I know how you felt at St. Jude’s. In addition to participating in the St.Jude fun raisers on all the ships we sail on, one of our motorcycle clubs, The Southern Cruisers, has St. Jude’s as our major charity.
    My husband and I had the honor to go to St. Jude’s when our club presented the funds we had raised. We also bring fun to the kids – we put them on our motorcycles, bring them “biker” gear and lots of hugs.
    A really great day.

  11. Earl & Denise Latchman says:

    I’m extremely happy for the contributions that are being made to St. Jude and that American Cancer Society by Carnival and it’s guests. May we all continue to contribute in a meaningful way.

  12. Lisa Beshears says:

    I love John’s Blog, but I appreciate you taking the time out to guest blog today, and to participate in raising money for the children of St. Jude hospital. To me, there is nothing more important than our children. We only cruise on Carnival and it does my heart good to see you doing such wonderful things for children and St. Jude hospital. As an 11 year breast cancer survivor Relay for Life is also close to my heart and a great event that I have participated in several times. Both are excellent causes and I applaud Carnival’s efforts.

  13. Bobbye says:

    I was on the Carnival Magic in May of last year when my dad sent me a message that my little sister had been diagnosed with leukemia and was being taken to Saint Jude’s in Memphis. They are, without question, the most amazing people. Thank you for giving so much to these families that need it so badly.

  14. Lora Crider says:

    Always try to participate in the Groove for St. Jude activity! Kudos to Carnival for their support of St. Judes!

    • JOE R says:

      we always donate to st. jude when we sail carnival we are platinum, BUT why stop there, when you get home call or e-mail st jude & become a monthly donor , we donate 20.00 every month ,that way we are trying to save more of the childrens lives, also contact the knights of Columbus for info helping st. jude

  15. Thressa Jacobs says:

    Friends are treating me to a cruise for my 50th birthday. I am so excited about so many things on and off the ship, but the one thing I look forward to the most is the Grooving for St. Jude activity. Thank you so much Carnival for the opportunities to support our children who are in such need!

  16. Vera Adams says:

    St Jude’s Hospital is the one charity that is dear to my heart! Kudos to Carnival for their contributions AND for allowing passengers to participate in the fund raising in such a fun way!

  17. Pat says:

    Good Evening,
    I am quite upset with Carnival right now as a platinum cruiser with Carnival. I was currently booked on the Carnival Victory out of San Juan for January, 2017 and you have decided to switch ships to the Fascination.
    I do not want to go on this smaller ship and would like a refund of my deposit. However the folks at Carnival seem to be giving my travel agent a hard time with this.Tell me how can I get a refund without penalty so I can decide what cruise I would like to switch to to celebrate my 60th birthday. And why is Carnival giving my travel agent a tough time when you increase my pricing and also put me on deck 5 instead of deck 6.
    I am quite upset as I have always been a Carnival cruiser and now this has happened.
    Please advise.

  18. Larry Snyder says:

    We are suppose to be heading to Freeport and Nausau tomorrow out of Jacksonville. With the Hurricane warnings in the Bahamas for the next 2 days will the cruise still sail and if so where will it go for 4 days?

  19. Crystal says:

    Hi! I’m going on my first cruise (for my honeymoon!) In February and I cant wait!

    • Roger says:

      Good luck to you! My daughter always said she was going to get married on a beach. When she found the love of her life, they announced their wedding would be on Miami Beach. We live in Pennsylvania, so they invited any of us who go down for the wedding on the cruise they booked. It turned into a double wedding as her cousin decided to tie the knot as well. Mom and dad (me) just returned from our third cruise last week.

      I truly wish you and your groom the very best! Enjoy your lives together!

  20. Gladys says:

    Thanks to Carnival for supporting my favorite charity!!

  21. Linda Carter says:

    I am trying to make reservations for the steakhouse on the Carnival Sunshine for Sunday, February 14, 2016. We will be sailing on this cruise and wanted to eat there. However, in trying to follow the directions given in the FAQ’s section on the website, there is no way to ascertain a reservation form or contact anyone about it. Can you explain how to do this?

    • Linda Carter says:

      Never mind! I found the reservation form on the page with John’s BLOG! Thanks…can not wait to sail..only 45 days till our next cruise! Ready for warmth and sunshine!!!!!

  22. Robert Edwards says:

    Hi Mrs. Duffey, please e-mail me at I need to share some very important information with you that occurred on my family’s recent cruise we just returned home yesterday and I feel this is very important for you to be aware of this situation and I don’t want to place this on social media… This is very important as a 27 year police veteran you need to be made aware of this.. Thank you.. Robert Edwards e-mail me and I will return the e-mail with the info you need to be made aware of.

  23. Alan Radomski says:

    Hi John, I’m the guy who said call the females high in the corp LIPSTICK, just call them QUEENS, , I think that’s what they what. Lol

  24. Karen Leibach says:

    Hello, Christine Duffy, and welcome to Carnival.

    I am a long-time cruiser, going back to 1987. I’ve been on 52 Carnival cruises and currently have 5 more booked. I have a suggestion I’d like to pass on to you and the other “beards.”

    Those of us who have cruised a long time are getting older, and some of us are becoming disabled. I love that Carnival keeps building new beautiful ships, but they keep getting bigger. It’s getting harder and harder to walk from one end of the ship to the other. So a lot of us end up renting scooters, I’m not there yet; I can still walk with a cane, and hopefully I’ll be able to do so on the Carnival Vista.

    A lot of us older long-time cruisers like the longer cruises (most of us are retired and don’t have to worry about being able to take that much time off work).

    So here’s my suggestion: I’d like to see Carnival build a new class of ship that’s smaller, rather than larger – maybe back to the size of the Holiday class, or even smaller (like the Pacific Princess). These ships would still accommodate several entertainment venues, production shows, a casino, a spa – they would just be so much easier for some of us to navigate. They could be built primarily for longer cruises and would be able to get into ports that larger ships can’t accommodate.

    I’ll keep on cruising as long as I can, but I thought I’d throw this out as a possibility for increasing the number of longer cruises – and not ending up with so many folks on scooters.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this.

  25. Carla Riddle says:

    My husband and I contribute to “Groove for St Jude” on every cruise. We have donated monthly to St Jude for years.

  26. stephanie says:

    Just went on carnival conquest. 6Th cruise. Wee Jimmy was absolutely phenomenal. Best cruise ever

  27. Deborah Lustman says:

    Hello Ms Duffy!
    As a long time, devoted Carnival Cruiser, I want to call attention to an area of weakness that I feel Carnival should work on to improve. In your above interview you stated that Carnival’s mission is to provide fun and memorable vacation experience to all of your guests. However, since becoming disabled and wheelchair bound in the last year, I have found that Carnival does not provide these things for the truly handicapped and disabled. I have a unique perspective in that I have been cruising with you (without disabilities) for over 20 years and have been nothing but pleased with every one of my cruises. Now, since cruising with my disability, I have to question your mission in the equality for which you service your disabled and handicapped guests. I’m actually in the process of establishing a website and blog specifically addressing disabled cruisers and reviews of ships and how well they meet the needs of this growing population. I would love the opportunity to discuss this matter with you in more depth, should you be interested.. Just email me. I applaud your efforts in all you do, especially in giving back. But if you are truly serious about making Carnival a vacation destination for everyone, then I’m asking you to please not overlook us, the disabled! Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you! Deborah Lustman

    • Jim Guy says:

      Deborah, you are absolutely correct. Although I am not disabled, last year, I got hurt on a Carnival ship and spent the whole cruise in a wheelchair(the accident happened on the first day out of port). Specifically, for wheelchair people, I wonder if enough people, under those circumstances, take cruises. However, assuming there are the numbers, your remarks to Mrs.Duffy are RIGHT-ON. Keep up the questions and “complaints” to both John Heald and Mrs. Duffy.

      • Regan Rickson says:

        I guess it’s really too bad that ADA does not cover the entire world, and thus Carnival cannot be forced to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on accommodations for a small minority to the detriment of everyone else. Talk about first world problems: “my cruise ship was so big that I had to rent a scooter to get around!”

  28. Shron Evans says:

    Love having a Blog with John

  29. George Ellmore says:

    I know you have been here for some months but it is my first opportunity to say Welcome Aboard. I have sailed on 84 cruises with my first being out of Alexandria, Va. on the old Commodore Cruise Lines “Caribe”. We moved to Mississippi in 2006 and have been on 14 Carnival cruises since. We are booked again on the Sunshine in April 2016 out of Port Canaveral. Carnival is great and I have made many friends of crew and passengers over that time. Keep up the good work.

  30. virginia wellman says:

    Hello My Friend,
    We are new Diamond guests and want you to know that you are one of the main reasons we
    have made Carnival our home. YOU ARE THE MAN. We do love Carnival and will go on the
    MIRACLE on Nov 28, HAWAII
    A lot of health problems this year but we are
    up and sailing again.

  31. Joe woods says:

    Dear john,
    I have been looking at the new cruise
    Ship carnival vista and it looks great
    Is it possible to get family cabins with
    Balcony, as there are four adults and
    Two children,we are looking at 9th July
    From Barcelona.

  32. Regan Rickson says:

    I always assumed St. Jude was in Miami! It’s great that the program raised more money than expected, and you were able to renew it.

  33. Jim Riela says:

    Bravo Christine and Carnival!

  34. Lorena Slade says:

    I love reading everything John does. Poor guy has to listen to a bunch of yucky stuff from people. He deserves a raise. I have loved every Cruise. I am there to have fun. I don’t drink too much and love the service. I would sail with Carnival even it was just in a circle for days.

  35. James Guy says:

    For Mrs. Duffy: After the wonderful Greetings you received, and the political comments, as a very past cruiser on many Carnival ships, I find that most of the time the executives never talk to the average past guest cruising. You and other executives have time to hold meetings on defferent ships, but Never are “just an average cruiser”. You should have your husband book a cruise, on Carnival and travel for a week as a regular guest and talk to the “average guest” and find out what the “average past guest” really thinks–about new items, like the American Table, not having Future Gift Certificates any more, having new “not friendly” web pages to deal with–you may lose potential new cruisers if they cannot book a cruise on the internet. GO UNDERCOVER FOR A FULL WEEK AND BECOME A REGULAR ‘JOE’ and find out what you never are told, being the executive you are.

    I am a past cruiser with 3 cruises booked this year(2016) and lookling for a cruise on Carnival for April, 2017, as I type this(26).

Copyright 2011 John Heald. All Rights Reserved