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Sustainable Guest Experiences

Sustainable Guest Experiences

AIDA believes that acting sustainably and unforgettable holiday experiences are closely linked.

We inform our travel agency partners and guests about our commitment and continually develop our range of cruise packages to improve sustainability.

In compiling our range of packages, we pay particular attention to animal and species conservation, as well as to protecting our oceans. Sustainable land excursions not only provide our guests with unforgettable experiences, but also contribute to regional economic development, to protecting and promoting the environment and cultural heritage as well as to improving the livelihoods of local populations.

Our sustainable shore excursions

Our sustainable shore excursions

In September 2012, we launched a joint project with the sustainability initiative Futouris e.V. and the State Chancellery of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern to develop standardized criteria for sustainable land excursions. The aim was to create a transparent basis of comparison for the sustainability of excursion packages and to base the assessment on measurable and scientific criteria. The criteria were developed in collaboration with scientists from the University of Lüneburg and it is based on the ISO 26000 (Guidelines for Corporate Social Responsibility). As a model region, the Baltic Sea Region was evaluated on the basis of the new catalog of criteria and the first excursion packages were developed together with AIDA and local partners. As a result: In April 2014, the first 18 AIDA excursions around the Baltic Sea already were labeled with the tree symbol.

We continuously expand our range of sustainable land excursions in our destinations all over the world. There are currently 700 land excursions (including bicycle and pedelec tours) that have been certified with the tree seal.

Together with Fathom, a brand of Carnival Corporation & plc, we furthermore offer our guests the opportunity to be actively involved in social projects as part of selected excursions in the Caribbean.

All AIDA excursions that meet our social, ecological and cultural criteria are designated by a special tree symbol. Our guests are able to distinguish which offers are especially sustainable before booking the excursion on MyAIDA.

Transport services, the content or focus of the excursion (e.g. culture, nature, and social commitment), eating opportunities and the commitment to sustainability of the local partner agency are the four main criteria against which the individual excursion packages are assessed. There are additionally numerous subsidiary items that also influence the assessment. The avoidance of CO2 emissions has priority where transportation is concerned.

We ensure that any waste produced by our excursion groups is disposed of appropriately or taken back on board. On our dives, we make a point of ensuring our guests can marvel at the wonders of the underwater world but not touch it, since underwater ecosystems are incredibly sensitive.

Our sustainable shore excursions

All 500 AIDA bicycle and pedelec tours, no matter whether it’s a relaxed exploratory tour or a more active sporting adventure, are accompanied by professional AIDA biking guides. Each AIDA ship stocks up to 130 bicycles, including e-bikes. We also offer special bicycle packages such as our mountain bike and road bike weeks with professional cyclists. More information: biking@aida.de

An alternative environmentally-friendly means of getting around are our tours on Scuddys, which are three-wheeled electric power scooters.

Animal and species conservation

 

We are committed to animal and species conservation. AIDA Cruises therefore only recommends tours that involve observing whales, dolphins and other species in their natural habitats to its guests. In offering these trips, we work together with selected providers who ensure that the animals are not disturbed by the tourists.

Our desire is that our guests are conscious of experiencing the many facets of sustainability - during a normal day on board as well as excursions ashore or during informative events on culture and the environment. We want to use our offerings to motivate our guests to travel more conscientiously, and to open their eyes both to the beauty of the natural world and to the dangers that threaten it.

AIDA is a member of a working group run by the Futouris e.V. initiative, which, working together with environmental organizations and researchers, aims to check and further develop the regulation of and compliance with animal welfare standards. In 2017, as part of this collaboration two further attractions on the Canary Islands were successfully audited. Further audits are scheduled to take place in 2018 in the Mediterranean, Southeast Asia, America and on the Canary Islands.

Clean oceans

In our view, maintaining and protecting the integrity of the environment and keeping oceans clean are part of an unforgettable holiday experience. AIDA Cruises aims to enthuse as many people as possible about our fascinating oceans, and in so doing raise the long-term levels of protection for our seas and coastal regions. This happens not only as a result of education and public relations activities, but also through practical nature conservation projects.

AIDA Cruises has been committed to eliminating the use of microplastics for many years. None of the cosmetics and cleaning products in spas on board AIDA contain any microplastics. These particles are not biodegradable. They endanger not only the environment but also bird and fish life, which can mistake these plastics for plankton and attempt to eat them. Microplastics can also enter our food chain if we consume contaminated fish.

UNWTO Code of Ethics for Tourism

AIDA signed the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism, promulgated by the UNWTO, as far back as November 2012. In doing so we were making a commitment to responsible and sustainable tourism.

As a signatory of this code, AIDA Cruises gives regular accounts to the UNWTO regarding its adherence to and the development of its measures aiming to promote sustainable tourism.

Points of contact on board

Points of contact on board

Guests can access information about our ecological and social commitments on board at any time via various channels e.g. via our onboard magazine ‘AIDA heute’ or our digital information systems.


Our officers or captains can provide interested guests
with further information during the ‘Nautical hour’
question and answer session.


Our environment officers moreover ensure compliance with all legal requirements and company standards relating to climate protection on board. They are responsible for supervising waste management and educating employees in environmental issues.

We follow local, national and international guidelines, for example those set down by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), a specialized agency of the United Nations.

An overview of our most important standards is available in the ‘International conventions and standards’ chapter, and more detailed descriptions are contained in the sustainability reports released by the Carnival Corporation & plc.

More information: Sustainability report of the Carnival Corporation & plc

Points of contact on board

Guest satisfaction

Guest satisfaction is our top priority.

At AIDA every effort every day is made to ensure our guests feel
at ease and competently cared for both on board and on land at all times.

Comprehensive and competent service

Customer management is our most important instrument for implementing the requests of our guests. We conduct a dialog with our guests on various topics, for example travel information and our loyalty program AIDA Club. The Customer Experience Management section is where all information to do with quality assurance is recorded, and where a wide range of measures aimed at satisfying our guests at coordinated and implemented. Customer management represents the interests of our guests in the company and actively incorporates proposals and requests in the development of new products.

In 2017 AIDA again received numerous distinctions for exceptional service (find out more in the Awards chapter), which motivate us to improve our service even further.

Measurable satisfaction

We record the satisfaction of our guests by means of a detailed guest questionnaire which is filled out at the end of a voyage. We are happy to follow up on suggestions and requests, but we also value criticisms that our guests make too.

We have improved our methods for evaluating guest satisfaction in order to ensure that our products and processes can be tailored even more towards our customers. If AIDA guests recommend our offer, their measured satisfaction increases. In 2017, we were able to increase guest satisfaction by another three percent over the previous year.

The onboard “I Feedback” system has enabled us to become the first cruise line to be able to record guest satisfaction immediately. Our guests can rate individual offerings directly and give our onboard employees the opportunity to react straight away. Direct points of contact are easily accessible both on land and aboard our fleet.

Experts from the hotel and catering trade regularly travel incognito on board our ships and as such experience an authentic cruise experience on board an AIDA ship. The testers make their assessments on every component part of the journey using clearly defined quality and service standards, and give us valuable feedback that assists us in boosting the satisfaction of our guests even more.

Guest satisfaction

AIDA Customer Center

The AIDA Customer Center should be the first port of call for anyone seeking expert advice and guidance with booking a cruise. Whether by telephone, by email or via our online chat feature, our employees are available around the clock.

AIDA Club

AIDA Club

The AIDA Club allows us to offer our guests special advantages. Depending on their club level, our members can benefit from a welcoming present when they step on board, club meetings, separate check-in or credit to be spent on board. The five club classes of blue, red, yellow, green and gold show our most loyal guests aged 16 and over our special appreciation. Every member can view their status and the associated benefits in the club portal. Our onboard club meetings provide an opportunity to converse with the crew outside the normal daily business. Another benefit comes in the form of invitations to events on land and maritime festivals, such as the “Hafengeburtstag” in Hamburg.

Since 2016, up to five club ambassadors, who are selected in a live voting procedure, have been representing hundreds of thousands of AIDA fans and have been reporting through texts, videos and photos in online blogs on news, interesting updates and original topics from the AIDA holiday world and on the wide range of AIDA events.

Guests with particular requirements

Guests with particular requirements

We strive to ensure that our guests with allergies or other specific impairments are able to enjoy their holiday as independently and with as much accessibility as possible. Naturally we provide support with pleasure for our guests and their accompanying persons whenever needed.

In our opinion every guest should be able to experience an AIDA journey without difficulties. We therefore assume, for example, any additional costs incurred for special transfer arrangements (on booking an AIDA inbound and outbound package).

We indicate the tours that are best suited for persons with individual impairments in our excursion brochures. We always take into account the local circumstances while planning onshore excursions and actively incorporate our partners at the destination into the process in order to provide suitable barrier-free conditions.

At AIDA Cruises, we cater to the needs of our guests with food allergies or intolerances. Our buffet restaurants, for example, always offer gluten and lactose free dishes. Furthermore, any guests who suffer from specific food intolerances can inform the AIDA Customer Center of any such requirements before setting out on their voyage. Our AIDA ships also feature a ‘light diet bar’. Should our guests have any queries, our trained staff is happy to assist. Our onboard chefs receive regular training on land concerning healthy and palatable food.

Our specially trained staff can moreover offer assistance at any time:

  • Competent consultation with the accessibility team in the AIDA customer center before booking the cruise
  • Special check-in for guests with specific impairments
  • Providing the guests with preliminary information and assistance with regard to questions concerning orientation and assistance onboard
  • Installation, explanation and maintenance of technical devices
  • Invitation to the Accessibility Meeting, providing individual advice on suitable excursions and how to plan a holiday onboard
  • Contact persons for all questions relating to orientation and assistance onboard
  • Assistance in reading food and beverage menus as well as other printed material

On our AIDA website we give detailed information about offers for allergy sufferers, accessibility on board and for trips with AIDA as well as for offers with limited hearing and sightedness or agility.

More information:
email: barrierefreiheit@aida.de
individual nutrition
barrier-free traveling

Medical care on board

Medical care on board

The on-board hospitals of our ships are equipped with state-of-the-art technology not only offer outpatient care but also beds for inpatient and intensive care. The modern equipment such as X-ray machines, ultrasounds, laboratory equipment, ECGs and ventilators support our ship´s doctors and qualified nursing staff in making safe diagnoses and prescribing therapies. Our onboard doctors can easily contact land-based specialists thanks to our new telemedicine system if they have any dermatological and cardio logical questions. There are also defibrillators on board. Furthermore, every crew member receives regular training in first-aid.

Should it not be possible to treat an illness adequately on board, further medical care is then provided in a medical practice or hospital on land. If necessary, we are able to arrange a local interpreter and carer. We also provide detailed information about vaccinations and health care measures for the relevant destination and can advise about the possibilities for the requisite individual medical care. We recommend guests undergoing medical treatment or who have particular requests address important points such as obtaining medication or the possibility of needing medical treatment on board in advance of the trip or when making the booking by referring to barrierefreiheit@aida.de.

Additional services are offered on many of our ships, sometimes in collaboration with other departments, e.g. physiotherapy and Kinesio taping and more.