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Sailing into stormy waters online

Social media can be both a blessing – when the reviews and ‘thank yous’ are a delight – or a nightmare if critical comments go viral. And sometimes posts and blogs stir up discussion within hospitality.

Serenade of the Seas takes guests to breath-taking sights and had oceanfacing glass elevators and floor to ceiling windows throughout for viewing

That’s likely to be the case with a recent opinion piece on The Points Guy, a site which helps readers to make the most of their travel experiences. What was a blog started by founder Brian Kelly over a decade ago now has some 10 million unique visitors a month and a social media audience on the likes of Twitter and Instagram of over three million. Get ready for this headline on a piece by one of its senior writers, Gene Sloan: ‘When it comes to housekeeping, cruise ships blow hotels out of the water right now.’ Gulp.

Sloan has been travelling on some of the first cruise ships to restart operations in North America after Covid left them stranded and says: ‘the over-the-top service culture that has long been a hallmark of the cruise industry is alive and well, particularly when it comes to housekeeping standards.’

Sloan contrasts the twice-daily room cleaning on three ships he’d travelled on recently with how some US-owned hotel chains were sticking to the trend developed during the height of the pandemic of offering very limited housekeeping, claiming safety and comfort grounds dictated this.

Meanwhile, on his voyages he was greeted by room attendants not only returning the room to pristine conditions while he was away from it but offering to carry out additional services such as taking laundry for cleaning or bringing buckets of ice. He admits to finding the over-the-top room-cleaning culture’ of cruise ships something of overkill in the past but now finds it far more enticing after staying in hotels currently with limited to no housekeeping services.

You can read his full report at thepointsguy.com/news/cruise-shipversus- hotel-service-covid

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