Family Cruise News: Carnival Cruise Lines and The Coca Cola Company Team to Launch New Teen Program

Family cruise travel with teens just got a hot new boost. Carnival Cruise Lines, the world's largest cruise operator, and The Coca-Cola Company, the world's largest soft drink manufacturer, have teamed up to create "Club O2," a new teen program aboard the line'S 21 'Fun Ships.' This new program will dramatically improve family travel aboard the "Fun Ships" and will give families with teens a new reason to travel on Carnival this year. If you're planning to take a family cruise during the December holidays, now is the time to make your family travel plans.

Carnival Cruise Lines had discontinued their older teen program some time ago, leaving a void for families traveling with older high school children. Now, that problem appears to be solved. "Club O2," which is targeted at teens in the 15-17 age group, encompasses a variety of new and expanded programming fleetwide, as well as new teen directors aboard each ship and spacious teen clubs offering a memorable setting for activities or just hanging out. The teen centers are currently featured on 12 of 21 Carnival ships with the majority of the other ships scheduled to be retrofitted by the end of the year.

The 1,000- to 1,800-square-foot teen clubs include a dance floor with a DJ, a state-of-the-art sound and lighting system and large-screen plasma TVs displaying the latest movies and music videos. There's also a "Coke-tail" lounge where teen guests can enjoy Coca-Cola products and various non-alcoholic specialty drinks. The rooms are enhanced by a distinctive decor along with plush sofas and comfortable seating.

Select teen clubs also feature a library with popular teen-oriented books and magazines, video game units, 16-monitor "video walls," and "listening stations"where teens can plug in and hear the latest tunes.

"We've conducted extensive market research on the unique vacation desires of today's teens and have developed a carefully thought out program that combines modern, inviting facilities and interesting activities, all in an unstructured environment preferred by older kids," said Bob Dickinson, Carnival president and CEO. "Teens comprise a significant portion of the 500,000 kids who are expected to sail aboard the "Fun Ships's"this year and Carnival is pleased to partner with industry leader Coca-Cola to create this exciting program for teens to call their own, he added.

The "Club O2" activities begin shortly after teens arrive on board as they attend a "Welcome Aboard" party where they receive a complete listing of the voyage's activities, as well as a variety of promotional materials, including a mesh "Club O2" bag.

Then throughout the voyage, teens can enjoy a wide range of activities such as karaoke sessions, nightly themed parties, late-night movies, video game contests, basketball, ping-pong and other sporting events. Following the current "reality TV" craze, games based on "The Bachelor/Bachelorette," "Fear Factor" and "Survivor" are played daily. Activities start in the early afternoon and run well into the evening.

Activities are coordinated by a "Club O2" teen director aboard each ship. "These energetic directors are really the catalyst for "Club O2" and create an exciting atmosphere for getting teens involved, Dickinson said.

The new fleetwide teen program continues Carnival's efforts at catering to this burgeoning market. Recent enhancements include the fleetwide Y-Spa program aimed exclusively at older kids and their parents who can enjoy a variety of soothing, luxurious body and facial treatments.

Teens-only shore excursions are also available, providing older kids an opportunity to experience Carnival's exciting destinations together as a group. Outings are accompanied by a member of the teen staff and include such options as cave tubing in Belize, horseback riding in Cozumel, and swimming with stingrays in Grand Cayman.

Other Carnival fleetwide amenities popular with teens include 24-hour pizza and ice cream in the poolside restaurants and high-tech arcades featuring the latest video games. Teens can also enjoy a nine-hole miniature golf course on the Imagination, as well as a 270-square-foot outdoor television screen on the new Carnival Liberty which debuted last month.

Each Carnival ship offers at least three swimming pools as well as a twisting, turning water slide. These water slides tend to be very popular with younger family members as well.

Carnival is the largest cruise line in the world, with 21 "Fun Ships" operating voyages of three to 16 days in length to The Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexican Riviera, Alaska, Hawaii, Canada, New England and Europe. The line will expand the "Fun Ship" fleet with the launch of the 110,000-ton Carnival Freedom which is scheduled to enter service in February 2007."

For additional information and reservations, contact any travel agent, call 1-800-CARNIVAL or visit carnival.com.

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