New Jack City: A La Carte — The Future of Everything

A growing number of industries have changed their business models from “all inclusive” to a la carte…

The most dramatic of those changes have, of course, come in the airline industry where your  base ticket price basically gets you from point A to point B.

Anything beyond that costs extra.

Pillows, blankets, checked luggage, preferred seat assignments, food, drinks, extra legroom—the list goes on and on—can all add significantly to your end price.

And Las Vegas strip hotels have now joined the trend, where all the MGM Entertainment owned and operated properties are now adding a daily resort fee to your stay. That averages an additional $25 per night.

(Note that Caesars Entertainment hotels do not gouge you with resort fee add-ons which usually are collected at check-out.)

Even upscale restaurants are reaping gold these days by a la carting their entrees.

The menu reads, U.S. Choice Cut T-Bone: $ 25. Want a baked potato with that? That’s extra. Veggies? Sure—for another add-on fee.

The one industry you’d wish would offer its services a la carte is Cable TV.

But of course they don’t.

Why do I need Disney Channel, HGTV, Lifetime, Oxygen, Logo, Hallmark, CMT, RFD-TV or Univision? The answer is I don’t, but I’m sure paying for them all. (Come to think of it, they do have some hotties on Univision.)

So are you ready for the latest add-ons entrant?

Travel Weekly reports that “Carnival Cruise Lines is testing a program that enables passengers to pay for perks such as priority embarkation, early cabin availability and express baggage delivery.

It’s called Faster To Fun and being tested on Carnival’s Imagination and Liberty ships later this month.

“For $49.95 per cabin, all occupants of that cabin will receive the Faster To Fun benefits and tender availability, choice of early or late debarkation and express access to the ship’s guest-services desk for assistance during the cruise,” according to a trade paper.

Will they ever stop nickel-and-diming us?

Not as long as we  continue to buy it.

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8 Responses to New Jack City: A La Carte — The Future of Everything

  1. balbonis moleskine says:

    As someone who has taken a cruise and had to rush to catch a too-soon connecting flight out of Ft. Lauderdale, that $50 is well spent.

    You already have to pay a fee for late checkout at most hotels if you want to stay past noon.

    I prefer a-la-carte for resorts too. I’d rather eat the nice meals (and/or off food carts in the street) than the buffet. I don’t drink enough to make the extra cost wristband-vacationing worthwhile.

    Perhaps it has changed in the last 10 years since I took one, but Carnival Cruises were always the cheapest POS boats with people packed in asses to appetites and leaving piles of puke everywhere. It’s like 6 days and 7 nights aboard the SS Whiskey Tango Bar. Large boats used to be 50k tons, with the elite ones at 25k tons. Now a large one is 110k tons. You just cant have that many people and provide good service. You can have a lot of fun but not good service and great food.

    • balbonis moleskine says:

      To clarify, the industry as a whole has moved to larger boats. Carnival still sucks.

      • chuck says:

        I went on 4 or 5 cruises.

        I can’t remember how many.

        I can’t remember what I did.

        I remember “some” of the people on the cruises.

        I remember most of the people I went with.

        They shoulda just served peanuts, cold beer and whiskey, sent the food to a shelter.

        I think we pulled into port a couple of times, maybe…?

        I don’t remember where we went.


  2. smartman says:

    Cruiser’s are losers. Cruise ships are floating WalMarts with onboard Golden Corral’s, not to mention more germs than a Haitian whore house. Toss in a tattoo parlor and plasma bank and you’re in white trash heaven.

    If you wanna float in style hire a fully staffed and provisioned yacht. Prices are certainly higher than the big box boats but not unreasonable. Doing a week on a 62′ Nordhavn, in the Caribbean, including round trip air, ground transport, fuel, food, booze, captain and Macrobiotic cook at a cost of $1500.00 per person for a group of 8 in December.

    I prefer ala carte to not having any choices at all. And it’s not like you can’t take your own pillow, blanket, movies, music, magazines and snacks with you when you fly. Toss in a self filtering water bottle and some MiO flavored water enhancer and you’re fee free.

  3. chuck says:

    Hey Jack,

    Here is the promo, kind of, for a new flick we will all be looking at pretty soon. It’s a different take on the movie “Fight Club.”

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