Carnival Cruise lines, owner of Carnival and Costa brands has revealed they are to rename their entire fleet of ships to reflect the true experience in a huge rebranding exercise. The company has had many recent incidents which were then reported adversely in the media. Sensing an opportunity to turn reality to their advantage, the management have decided to rename all their vessels and appeal to a new edgier and more adventurous clientele.
The typical profile of cruising customers are generally middle aged couples in a final dash to recapture their youth and appear stylish after the kids have grown up but before acceptance that they are old, sad and decrepit. This age group has money, are not yet ready to throw in the towel and often think of themselves as 30 years younger who could still shake their fat wobbly booty all night long.
Carnival are now targeting a wider market, including people who often smoke and are therefore not averse to taking insane risks. Setting out to sea has always been dangerous - what if there was a real chance you may not come back when the engine or laundry room sets on fire?
When disaster strikes, as it often does if the Captain is allowed to drink on duty and the ship’s equipment is badly maintained, all on board will have the chance to rise to the occasion, to overcome obstacles and maybe even fight a fire. If and when the passengers are saved, they will then have memories and stories to last a lifetime, with brilliant tales of heroism for the papers.
Even when things get a little too far out of hand, like the Costa Concordia, there were many accounts of brave deeds which were ignored by the press. If the ship had been called the “Costa Shipwreck” the outcome would have been hailed as a triumph that so few died.
The names of the ships will be chosen to hint at the challenges passengers may face. Out will go names such as Carnival Paradise, Carnival Fantasy and Costa Romantica. Some of the new names suggested are Carnival Inferno, Carnival Heave and Costa Blackout.
Most ships will continue to fly the Flag of Panama, well known for its relaxed attitude to safety regulations and love of brown envelopes to “lubricate the rudder”.