Costa Cruises, one of 10 of Carnival Corporation’s brands, has announced the launch of the new WeChat Mini Program onboard Costa Asia's fleet in China. Starting September 2 onboard Costa Atlantica, the program will allow guests to make mobile payments and enhance their onboard experience.
WeChat, also known as Weixin in China, is a platform used for instant messaging, business and payment services. As of second half of 2017, there were over 963 million monthly active users on WeChat and Weixin.
Costa Cruises launched the first Mini Program to book and pay for a cruise itinerary on the WeChat platform on August 8. The Mini Program is a feature that allows users to instantly open and access services inside WeChat without having to download the full mobile app, providing a faster user experience. The latest update features an enhancement of the WeChat Mini Program to also include onboard entertainment, restaurant, and spa booking as well as duty-free shopping and other onboard services through complimentary intranet service, without subscribing to onboard internet services.
Costa Cruises sails year-round in China and has provided cruise vacations for over two million Chinese guests with differentiated products, including its popular "Italy at Sea" offering, through four ships based across North, East and South China.
The company has also recently announced that it plans to revamp its fare structure into four categories: Basic, Total Comfort Classic, Total Comfort Premium and Deluxe. The new pricing structure is available for cruises departing on or after April 1, 2018.