November 4, 2021
Royal Caribbean CEO Richard Fain expressed that his company hasn’t suffered much from U.S. staffing challenges because the cruise line leans on a global talent pool. Fain lamented that jobs at Royal Caribbean are “so desirable” to overseas workers that recruitment is easy, at a time when other companies in the hospitality-related industries have struggled to fill open roles.
According to Fain, “We really had essentially no problem in attracting talent. The people that provide service are what makes the company so successful. They are the ones that the guests love.”
“We’ve had no difficulty recruiting and I think it’s because we’re just seen as such an attractive job for people all over the world,” he added.
On the buoyancy of his company, Mr. Fain said the company is ‘in the process of reducing’ its debt load and has recently cut part of its more expensive debt, with a goal to eliminate all pandemic-associated debt within the next two years. The cruise industry was brought to a halt by the Covid pandemic, forcing Royal Caribbean and rival operators to turn to the debt market for cash injections. In its third-quarter earnings release earlier Friday, Royal Caribbean reported having $19.88 billion in long-term debt.
Royal Caribbean resume sailing from U.S ports this summer and CEO Fain confirmed bookings for the 2021 calendar year were weak. However, Fain showed titanic optimism that bookings for the tail end of 2021 (traditional holiday season) should be strong; even commenting that bookings for 2022 are ‘remarkably strong.’
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