On October 4, I will board the Carnival Dream to host the first of many Carnival Journeys voyages which are selling very well, I am happy to say. For those of you who are not aware of what “Carnival Journeys” cruises are all about, let me quickly tell you. They are longer-length voyages that will feature special entertainment both local to the ports of call and entertainment designed by Carnival. These cruises will also have lots of features such as interaction with the captain and department heads, local cuisine and, of course, the much anticipated flashback to 1987 day, of which I shall speak more of in a moment.

Here are the first few Carnival Journeys voyages for you to dribble and drool over.

We start with the Carnival Dream

4-Oct-15 Sunday   New Orleans, LA   4:00 PM
5-Oct-15 Monday   “Fun Day” at Sea At Sea At Sea
6-Oct-15 Tuesday   “Fun Day” at Sea At Sea At Sea
7-Oct-15 Wednesday   Nassau, The Bahamas 7:00 AM 3:00 PM
8-Oct-15 Thursday   “Fun Day” at Sea At Sea At Sea
9-Oct-15 Friday   King’s Wharf, Bermuda 1:00 PM  
10-Oct-15 Saturday   King’s Wharf, Bermuda   5:00 PM
11-Oct-15 Sunday   “Fun Day” at Sea At Sea At Sea
12-Oct-15 Monday   “Fun Day” at Sea At Sea At Sea
13-Oct-15 Tuesday   St. Maarten, NA 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
14-Oct-15 Wednesday   St. Thomas, USVI 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
15-Oct-15 Thursday   San Juan, Puerto Rico 7:00 AM  

 

And then the Carnival Dream continues on her second Journeys voyage.

 

15-Oct-15 Thursday   San Juan, Puerto Rico   10:00 PM
16-Oct-15 Friday   St. Thomas, USVI 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
17-Oct-15 Saturday   St. Kitts, WI 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
18-Oct-15 Sunday   St. Maarten, NA 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
19-Oct-15 Monday   “Fun Day” at Sea At Sea At Sea
20-Oct-15 Tuesday   Grand Turk 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
21-Oct-15 Wednesday   “Fun Day” at Sea At Sea At Sea
22-Oct-15 Thursday   Ocho Rios, Jamaica 8:00 AM 4:00 PM
23-Oct-15 Friday   “Fun Day” at Sea At Sea At Sea
24-Oct-15 Saturday   “Fun Day” at Sea At Sea At Sea
25-Oct-15 Sunday Carnival Dream New Orleans, LA 8:00 AM  

 

After the Carnival Dream, there are lots more Journeys cruises, including voyages to Hawaii and islands such as Bonaire, Grenada, Martinique and other wonderful locations. There will be more for 2016 and 2017 that we will announce soon. These are amazing longer voyages that I am sure so many of you will enjoy.

I mentioned the 1987 flashback day which will for sure be a huge highlight of the Carnival Journeys sailings. They will include us printing “Carnival Capers,” which is what we called the Fun Times back in the days of Wham, Mullets and when I was a young CD and was more of a sex object than CD Matt Mitcham is now…………I wanted sex, everyone objected.

We are really going to have fun on this flashback day. We will include an old-style formal night. The captain, chief engineers and hotel director will be dressed in white tuxedo uniforms and will stand at the entrance of the main lounge where the cruise director (me on the two Carnival Dream cruises) will introduce guests to them; they will have a photo with the captain and then go into the main lounge. There they will be given complimentary drinks as we used to make back in the 1980’s and they will dance to the orchestra who will be playing Glen Miller and the sounds of big band. Each guest sailing on our Carnival Journeys will receive an e-mail invitation where we will invite them to wear tuxedos and flowing ball gowns. Although this will not be mandatory, of course, but I expect many will do so.

I will not be the CD for these voyages but intend to be on as many as my schedule allows and next week, I will let you know which ones I will be on. I was asked to host many of the old 1980s activities including:

  • Men’s Knobby Knees – Yep, love to
  • Male Nightgown Contest – Yep, but I want danger money and SAS bodyguards
  • Frog Racing – yes indeed, so many memories of that
  • Horseracing – Time to get my wood out, horses that is
  • 1980’s Pool Games – Yes, but if my flaccid arse gets thrown in the pool, I will not be pleased
  • Jokes We Cannot Tell Anymore in Today’s PC World – Oh, yes, that’s going to be loads of fun
  • Walk A Mile for Fun with John – No, bugger off.       Walking: I hate that word. Even with my weight loss and diet and exercise regime, walking for fun is just plain silly. In the 80’s and 90’s the cruise director was expected to walk around the deck at 8 am each sea day morning with a bunch of guests most of whom had seen the inside of a gym as much as I have seen the inside of Megan Fox.

Why would anyone just…………go for a walk? It is dirty, difficult, tiring and fraught with many dangers. You could have a heart attack, you could be struck by lightning, you could be knocked down by a car or, if you are taking a stroll in Australia…….you could be eaten or poisoned by some of God’s more pissed off creatures. Why walk around the deck……..doing for a charitable cause as we used to is understandable but just for “fun”……….that’s bloody insane. People sometimes go “for a walk” to get some fresh air. But the idea of “going for a walk” seems completely ridiculous because one of two things will happen. You will either end up back at home again and what’s the point of going out in the first place if that’s your goal? Or if you are Australian…..… you will be killed by snakes, spiders or crocodiles. I am sure that some of the kale-loving readers of this blog will be saying “walking is good for you, you get to see nature and things and enjoy the fresh air” ……….or you could stay in …….. order some Chinese food and while eating your Kung Poo chicken, enjoy watching a pride of lions eat a Bambi on your 60 inch plasma………that’s seeing nature……..same thing then. People don’t understand that you don’t need to walk if you have a car. It has so many uses. A commuter device, a means whereby women will think you’re rich and want to have rumpy pumpy with you, a portable stereo Eye Pod, an air-conditioned respite from the sun and shelter in the rain. It is something you can love, cherish, abuse, polish and, if you are a Miami Heat basketball player with a blinged-up Bentley, totally ruin it with spinners and your shirt number engraved in the seats in sodding sparkly rhinestones. Anyway, walk a mile aside the Carnival Journeys voyages are going to be brilliant and I hope to see you on one of them but, if you want to walk a mile, then you are on your own, unless you’re a Latvian supermodel, obviously.

Now it’s time for me and my underpants to answer your questions…………here we go.

Paul Barrymore asks:

The problem with this blog is that far too much time is spent posting stupid immature stories. I then read you complain and moan that you have a lot of questions outstanding and surely if you spent more time answering your customers’ needs and not with bathroom humor written by a 12- year-old kid, you would catch up. I am also sure that your readers would not miss the juvenile humor attempts either. I hope then that this question gets answered before my husband and I cruise with Carnival. This will be our gold card cruise. We are on the cruise from Vancouver to Hawaii in cabin ****. Who are the comedians and when are the formal nights? How many formal nights are there on this trip? We need to book the steak restaurant and not double book on formal night. This is the third time I have posted this. Take my advice as a business owner that employs 20 people. Ditch the stupid jokes and stupid stories and answer more questions and watch your readership get bigger. Change the blog from stupid to successful.

John says:

Hello Paul Barrymore

My sincere apologies for the delay in answering this question for you which I can see has left you somewhat frustrated. I do have lots of questions waiting for me here and even though I answer 200 – 300 a week on Facebook, I also try to answer as many as I can here too. I have not thought about the blog becoming a question and answer session only but I do realise that my humour is not for everyone. Anyway, let’s concentrate on the answers to your questions because that is what is most important. The elegant nights for your cruise will be on the 16th and the 21st, there will be two elegant nights for you to enjoy. The comedians who will fly in and out of the ship during the cruise are: Chas Elstner, Will Marfori, Merl Hobbs, Jerome Kelly, John DiCrosta and Lenny Schmidt. I wish you a wonderful time and congratulations on that gold card. Best wishes.

John

Mauro asks:

We are a group of 13 that have booked from Canada on board Carnival Breeze for March 12, 2016. There are three relatives that have booked from Chile. What is the best way to have them sitting with us for dinner? Our travel agent says she can’t help. FRUSTRATED in Canada.

John says:

Hello Mauro

Please don’t worry. First of all, I have to say I am surprised that your travel agent says she can’t help you as it is easy to “link” the cabin numbers. Please though I would ask that you send me the cabin numbers for your whole party four days before the cruise to Facebook.com/johnheald. I will then speak with the maitre d and make sure you are seated at tables next to each other. I say that because the largest table is for 11 so I will arrange to tables next to each other. Hope that is OK and I wish you all a wonderful cruise. Best wishes.

John

Ian asks:

John, I recently ate at an IHOP restaurant in Hillsboro, Texas and saw the following sign on the inside of the door to the men’s restroom: “For the health and safety of our employees and valued guests please use the toehold at the bottom of the door to exit.” And, sure enough, there was an inverted “cup” about 8″ above the floor to stick your right-hand shoe into and open the door. Then, by simply using your right elbow, you can open the door and walk out…your hands never touch anything that others might have touched. So there, tell your buddies at Carnival about this and sit back while the world congratulates you on such a wonderful, healthy and safe idea!  Thank you.

John says:

Hello Ian

I have to say I have just been with Uncle Google asking him to show me this and I agree it looks like a wonderful way to avoid germs. We will have something different on your Carnival Vista when it comes to public bathroom doors but this is also unique and I think could really work. Thanks mate for telling me this and I will share with the beards. Hope to see you soon. Best wishes.

John

Marsha De Jong asks:

Carnival MUST do something about people who can walk but rent motor scooters. The amount of scooters has become intolerable with a large portion of them parked in hallways obstructing traffic and being complete shin attractors. And I’m not talking about those who really need mobility assistance. Many people use them because they are just plain lazy and obese and disgustingly overweight. Carnival should insist that medical documentation be shown proving a disability before these machines are allowed. I am so sick of them; they are dangerous and sadly sum up our country today.

John says:

Hello Marsha De Jong

I am not sure, legally, we can do that and besides I have to say that the vast majority of scooters I have seen on the ships are used by people with disabilities. I also think the vast majority of scooter drivers are caring and aware of their surroundings but also understand that having one drive into the back of your ankles would be very painful. I thank you for expressing your opinion and hope we see you soon on another cruise. Best wishes.

John

Kelly asks:

Hi John does Carnival do anything for persons celebrating birthdays on board? My mum will be celebrating her 65th birthday when we cruise in October and I wanted to do something special for her. Can Carnival offer any ideas/help?

John says:

Hello Kelly

This is a wonderful milestone. Please send me her name and cabin number the day before the cruise to my facebook.com/johnheald page and I will arrange something special for her. I am sure you all will have a brilliant time. Best wishes.

John

Scott Silver asks:

I have a question about Diamond status as I am a Diamond with 287 cruising days on Carnival. Am I correct that Diamonds are supposed to have priority boarding and departing the ship under self-assist? Unfortunately, many Carnival ships simply call Diamonds and Platinums together which I believe is unfair as Diamonds should be the first to be called. Is there some way to institute this policy fleetwide ? It’s upsetting to me when I go to the designated lounge 30 minutes early to disembark, and all these platinum people casually walk in the front of the line and clog the walkways sometimes 45 minutes after I arrive in the lounge and they get off first? To say this irritates me is an understatement. Back on July 29 on Carnival Conquest, nearly got into an altercation with a Platinum cruiser whom showed up at 7am and attempted to walk off the ship before the Diamonds? I think Carnival needs to take a look at this. On Carnival Valor a couple of months ago, they actually had a separate place for diamonds and platinums to go. Much better setup and a heck of a lot less stress. Thanks John!

John says:

Hello Scott Silver

Let me say a big thank you for your loyalty and I hope there will be many more cruises in your future. I will be passing this on to the right people. I do think that some of our home ports have better facilities to look after our VIFP guests. Diamond guests are supposed to board first so I will pass this along to see what we have to do to make sure this happens. I am here if you have any further questions or need my help. Best wishes.

John

Kevin asks:

I’ve seen a recent post about setting up meet and greets and asking for a set area with door prizes or something CC meet and greets. All I have read on the Internet is that there is a fee for these things. So the question I have is… Is there a free option just to have something setup for the CD to be at if possible and how do you go about setting one of these up? There is a group of us on CC that will be going on the Carnival Sunshine September 6 and we want to setup a meet and greet. The group seems really good and I have heard horror stories about CC people that I simply never found to be true. About 20+ people in all would be in attendance and we are all looking forward to spending some time on the Sunshine.

John says:

Hello Kevin

Yes indeed, happy to set up a room for you at no charge. I cannot, I am afraid, guarantee that the cruise director will be there as his/her schedule often does not allow for this. All I need you to do is write to me on my facebook.com/johnheald page on September 2 and let me know when you would like this and at what time and also how many will attend. I will contact the ship and arrange something for you. Hope that is OK and I wish you all a wonderful time. Best wishes.

John

Carolyn asks:

Hi John, I was wondering why pre purchasing bottled water, was not available on Aussie cruises. I’m not fussed about that but surely we should have the option of pre purchasing bottled water at a reduced price. I’m cruising Hawaii to Sydney in September…….have a nice day.

John says:

Hello Carolyn

I agree, I see no reason as to why we cannot offer pre-paid water for you as we do on our other ships. There may be a simple answer as to why not that smarter people will tell me but at least let me investigate for you. Thanks so much, enjoy that amazing cruise and please let me know if there is anything I can do for you. Best wishes.

John

Frank Heine asks:

Will Carnival Splendor get a Guy’s Burger Joint this spring in dry dock?

John says:

Hello Frank Heine

There are no plans for this at the moment but should that change I will let you know. Please let me know if I can help you further. Best wishes.

John

Roger Tollerud asks:

John: We sailed on the Miracle 20-27 June and had a wonderful time. Many people made it that way and I would like to recognize several of them. All of the guest services folks are excellent but one among them stands out. Guest Services Supervisor Ruzica was just superb. There is not a question she can’t answer or a problem she can’t solve. She is smart, knowledgeable and fun to be around. She treated my wife and me like family. Bartender Julius and Bar Waiter I Wayan of the pool bar met us day one with smiles and both called us by name because they remembered us from an April cruise–I find that to be amazing. Finally, Steward Dewa “D” and his Assistant Godwin were the best ever and our cabin started out spotless and got better as the week went on. I would be pleased if you would let their bosses know how well they are doing.

Regards, Roger Tollerud

John says:

Hello Roger Tollerud

Thank you so much for this wonderful post full of vibrant praise for a department that does not always get the praise they deserve, the guest services officers. I will be passing on all your kind words and everyone you mentioned will be thrilled. I hope you had the best of times and that there will be more fun times on board ahead for you soon. Thanks again, this was brilliant.

Best wishes

John

Shanna Durrant asks:

Carnival cruises should show their respect for nature and help save the environment by making your passengers use their towels for three or more days during a cruise. This is exactly what we did on our cruise. Our cabin steward said she was surprised because nobody ever does.

I want Carnival to promote this to their passengers to get with the program to help save the environment by reusing their towels during their cruises.

John says:

Hello Shanna Durrant

Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts with us and I am sure you were not the only ones doing this during the cruise as many guests use their towels multiple times during the cruise (in fact there is a card in every stateroom encouraging this). Carnival takes environmental protection very seriously and I am sure many of our guests do too. Thanks again and I hope we see you soon for more fun on one of our ships. Best wishes.

John

That’s all for today and many thanks for your kind comments, opinions and questions. I will get to more as soon as I am able.

There have been a few comments on my Facebook page recently asking about when and if we are going to change the way we sell photos and certainly the world of photos has indeed changed. In the olden days, our cameras were the size of a coffee table book, but we’d carry them around with an assortment of spare lenses and flash guns and we’d move people out of the sun and make everyone smile and we’d take the film to the photo department on board and we’d pay a bit extra for a fast turnaround because we were desperate to see how everything had turned out. And then we’d leaf through the finished shots in 10 seconds, put them in a drawer and never ever look at them again.

Today, things are very different. Because you have a digital camera on your eye phone, you take pictures of absolutely everything and on YouTube; every day’s a wedding day. You used to come back from your cruise with 24 pictures, because that’s how many were on the film. Now, most people come back from a cruise with about a billion all stored on their phones.

But then you have to store them onto your computer. This is easy enough if you have 24 hours to spare, the patience of someone who’s actually dead and a master’s degree in computers and a doctorate in Geek.

Once you have finally understood how to put the photos onto the computer thingy, you face another problem. Do you delete the ones that have bugger all meaning or which are out of focus? No. You either leave them all where they are, in which case they will be lost for all of time when your hard drive crashes. Which, one day…………… I assure you, it bloody well will.

This leads me onto the current way Carnival sells photos because I can totally understand why Carnival’s hard copy portrait photos are so popular……….because you can actually put them in a frame…………..and look at them without having to press “control, alternate FFS delete” and call Bill Gates a complete and utter bastard for deleting the rarest photos in the world off your camera and that is……a photo of Facebook reader Sally Kane actually on a Carnival ship.

Seriously, though, our photo revenue is pretty much the best in the industry and as I have always said, good on board revenue keeps ticket prices down. And yet we have a new problem to ponder and to police and that is the sheer number of people who take photos of our photos with their eye phones. You do this like nobody is watching yet it is as obvious as seeing me leading a huge yak called Dave down through the photo gallery, stopping to take a huge crap by the elegant night photos and then watching Dave the Yak do the same.

I know many of you take photos of the photos and our photographers do try to stop this but they are busy taking actual photos. Now I know some of you who take photos of our photos do buy some as well but some definitely don’t……you cheeky sods you. The photo beards are really going to push on with the current and very popular photo package currently on the Carnival Pride and hope to introduce this on other ships soon. And, as for your Carnival Vista, wait until you see what we are doing with the photos we take and the ones you take too – you will love it and you will WOW it for sure. More news on that and a totally brilliant cabin TV surprise soon.

Right, I will be flying a lot over the next few weeks. On Friday I head to Italy and four days of filming at the ship yard and your Carnival Vista and then on September 19 fly again to Miami followed by flights to and from New Orleans and then back again across the pond. I fly a lot and have noticed myself getting more and more cynical about those who fly with me. I have started profile them as they shift about in the line to get on the plane. He’s definitely sweating, he has a beard, he is on a mission.

But the passengers who make me the most nervous are the ones who make a run for the toilets while the plane is in mid-climb and the fasten the sodding seatbelt sign is still on and before the cabin crew have finished telling us how much they love us and how they will be providing meal and drink service soon. What is wrong with these passengers? Go before the flight, FFS. I know that many medical conditions mean that people have to urinate many times but surely you hold it in for just three or four bloody minutes. Cross your legs. Chew some gum. Do something, anything except unclip your seatbelt and charge toward the front of the plane scaring the crap out of all of us. Take my advice, don’t pee during the climb to cruising altitude and, if you ignore this, don’t blame me if your urgent need to urinate results in your arse being blown away by Liam Neeson.

Goodnight.

Your friend,

John

Hi, I’m John, and this is my blog. So please don’t mistake my opinions — or those of my dear friends, fans or commenters — for those of Carnival Cruise Line or Carnival Corporation. My apologies in advance for anything I may say that upsets you, but this disclaimer covers Carnival and puts the blame directly on me………….. bugger.

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