Carnival’s Ocean Medallion Opens A Sea Of Possibilities

Carnival’s Ocean Medallion Opens A Sea Of Possibilities
The Ocean Medallion can be carried separately or snapped into a wristband. [Photo: Jeff Olson]

Regal Princess, a ship owned by the sprawling Carnival Corporation, is setting out to sea with an ambitious new personalization platform—called the Ocean Medallion—designed to customize the cruise for each individual passenger.  (Our November 2017 article, “Carnival’s New Wearable Makes Big Ships Feel Smaller,” explains how the huge project came together.) Here’s how it works.

1. Pre-trip

On the web or on the app, you can book experiences, log your tastes and interests, and line up your days. That data powers the recommendations you’ll see. The Ocean Medallion arrives by mail and becomes the key to ship access.

2. Stateroom

When you draw near, your cabin-room door unlocks without swiping. The room’s unique 43-inch TV, which doubles as a touch screen, offers a range of Carnival’s bespoke travel shows. Whatever you watch is fed into your excursion suggestions.

3. Food

When you order something, sensors detect where you are, allowing your server to find you. Your allergies and preferences are also tracked, and shape the choices you’re offered. In all, the back-end data has 45,000 allergens tagged and manages 250,000 drink combinations.

4. Activities

The right algorithms can go beyond suggesting wines based on previous orders. Carnival is creating a massive semantic database, so if you like pricey reds, you’re more apt to be guided to a violin concerto than a limbo competition. Your onboard choices—the casino, the gym, the pool—inform your excursion recommendations.