Princess Cruises’ Facebook Travel Contest May Sink the Ship

Princess Cruises’ Facebook Travel Contest May Sink the Ship

In the last month or so, I’ve received a half dozen Facebook Travel Contests offering all kinds of wonderful trips to the winner.

One came from Queensland, Australia, a solid contest that was rendered irrelevant by the horrific floods there.

Then there was the Carnival Cruise Lines Facebook promo we reported on, and now, Princess Cruises has just launched a Facebook Contest for the “Best Travel Bucket Story.”

Princess is using Facebook the way all clever travel marketers use the social media giant: They’re asking travelers to submit their stories either as text, images or video.

The public gets to vote on the most inspiring experience, and the person with the highest number of votes gets to choose his/her “dream cruise vacation.”

No question, these are great prizes.

The winner gets a 10-18 day cruise of their chosen destination-Europe, Asia, Tahiti, Australia, New Zealand, get the idea.

And most importantly, not just the cruise is free, the airfare is too. For two.

The “travel bucket list” idea, is really “marketspeak” for a travel wish list, the kind of thing that Jan Swartz, executive VP of Princess Cruises says represents the “kind of experience everyone should do at least once in their lifetime.”

The idea stems from Princess’ Cruises popular, 50 Essential Experiences where the company’s well-traveled employees share their favorite or most impressive travel events.

So what’s my problem?

However compelling the destinations are, Princess is asking me to give up a lot.

A hopeful contestant goes to Princess’ Facebook page and has or her video or text ready to submit.

Then pulls down the “Contest Tab”, then the “Submit Tab”, and here’s what Princess is asking to allow:

• Access to basic information. This includes name, gender, user ID, list of friends, networks, etc

• Access to email address of course

• Permission to post to the contestant’s wall, including photos, videos, notes and messages

• Then to be allowed manage the entrant’s events-that is, the contest wants to RSVP to events on the contestant’s behalf

So then, I check out the Official Rules of the contest, and see that Princess and its agents have a “worldwide, perpetual (though non-exclusive) license and right to “publish, license, use, edit, adapt the Video or Essay and Photo (s) in any and all media without consideration to the Entrant.”

They own me, in other words, and whatever I submit.

I called Princess and asked if I would be barred from the contest if I did not allow them access to my personal information and give them the permissions they want?

Karen Candy, Director of Media Relations, told me that an entrant had to accept all of the above to be able to participate in the contest. She said, “It allows us to communicate with the entrant.”

It does way more than that.

Would you give up all that information and privacy for a chance to win a cruise?

Let us know.


About New Media Travel

New Media Travel (NMT) produces sound-rich, 1 minute Travel Video PostCards transporting visitors instantly to a destination; timely travel blogs on travel trends posted to major web sites like Travel Weekly, Technorati,, and Audio PostCards. NMT provides Social Media services like Foursquare lead generation, etc
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