Restaurant POS systems have already become familiar to many diners, but the technology is also extremely well suited to the cruise ship environment, and cruise line POS systems are rapidly gaining in popularity among operators.

What Cruise Line POS Systems Can Do

Cruises are commonly marketed, with good reason, as the ultimate in relaxing vacations.

What could be better than a cash and credit card free environment with all food, drink, and entertainment charged to a single boarding card and paid for only at the end of the voyage?

However, it doesn’t always work out as simply as that, and problems with payment cards and queries or disputes about final bills can linger as unpleasant memories long after the Caribbean suntans have faded.

Making Life Easy for Cruise Customers

So for customers, cruise ship POS technology allows them the ease and convenience of ordering food, drinks, and merchandise, reserving tables, booking excursions or requesting cabin service, from wherever they are on the ship, using a very familiar Wi-Fi-enabled tablet.

Room key payments are accepted quickly and easily, with a minimum of disruption to passengers’ enjoyment of their vacation activities, and charges can easily be split between cabins if required. And despite the cruise industry’s traditional cashless operating model, the POS system can also be set up to accept customers’ preferred payment methods as well as the room key boarding card.

Simplifying Planning and Operations for Cruise Management

For cruise staff and management, cloud-based POS technology offers all the operational advantages already relied upon by thousands of restaurants.

Managing the interaction of the numerous catering and retail outlets typically operating on a large modern cruise ship can be extremely challenging. But an effective cruise line POS system integrates seamlessly with the ship’s property management system to eliminate many of the choke points which might otherwise negatively impact both profitability and passenger experience.

Efficient staff rostering across multiple outlets, for example, is made much easier, and rosters can be very simply adjusted in the light of real-time reporting of the levels of passenger usage of each outlet.

Purchasing decisions, changes to menus and plans for future promotions can also be made with great confidence using the predictive power of the many detailed reports provided by the system.

Boosting Staff Productivity

Serving and waiting staff tablets provide attractive visual displays of food and drink options to assist customers with the ordering process. At the same time, staff are enabled to manage multiple menus and submit orders directly to kitchens and bars, from anywhere on the ship.

They can also communicate directly with catering outlets to receive notifications of menu changes, upsell prompts, reminders of opening and closing times, happy hours and other promotional events, and to be advised when particular outlets are exceptionally busy or passengers may be experiencing longer than usual waits.

And in addition to handheld tablets for staff, fixed POS terminals can also be installed in restaurants, bars, casinos and stores, and can be customized in both function and appearance to match the particular needs of those outlets.

The NorthStar CBS Solution

NorthStar Custom Business Solutions (CBS) has been a market leader in restaurant POS systems for more than 25 years and is now bringing this expertise to the cruise industry.

Read our Norwegian case study

NorthStar is the partner chosen by the industry-renowned Norwegian Cruise Lines to provide the advanced POS technology for its new flagship, the Norwegian Escape, and is also working with the company on dedicated, multi-lingual tablet solutions for its ship the Norwegian Joy and its Harvest Caye vacation island.

You can access a detailed case study of our work on the Norwegian Escape here.

Find Out More

You can also call us on (800) 551-7674 for more information or visit us online for a live demo of all our cruise line POS solutions.