First look at Royal Caribbean's 2019-2020 Bermuda, Canada & New England deployment itineraries


Royal Caribbean released new information about select 2019-2020 Northeast and Bermuda sailings and when guests can expect to begin booking these adventures.

Royal Caribbean Crown & Anchor Society members can begin booking sailings on December 5, 2017, with the general public available to begin booking on December 6, 2017.

2019-2020 Northeast Adventures

2019-2020 Bermuda

The remaining opening schedule for the 2019-2020 sailings is as follows

  • Europe Phase I & Alaska: Summer 2019: Week of December 11, 2017
  • Remaining deployment: Spring 2018

Royal Caribbean named a best place to work for LGBTQ Equality by HRC 2018 Corporate Equality Index


Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd was named a “Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality” after scoring a perfect 100 on the Human Rights Campaign’s 2018 Corporate Equality Index.

This is the second year in a row that Royal Caribbean earned this honor, after making the list last year as well.

Last year the HRC, one of the oldest gay and lesbian political action committees in the U.S., added a requirement for inclusion as a top-ranking company on the 15-year-old index – a global non-discrimination policy or code of conduct that specifically prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

In meeting all requirements, RCL is among 609 major American businesses earning top scores on the index, a national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer workplace equality.

It’s thrilling, of course, says Adam M. Goldstein, RCL’s president and COO, explaining: “We actually have an opportunity as a company to be understood as one of the most welcoming employers anywhere, in any industry. And I think we should be.

“You have guests coming from absolutely everywhere, you’ve got crew coming from absolutely everywhere, you’ve got ships going absolutely everywhere, and really the only way to make an environment like that work well is that you have to be welcoming to everyone.”

“If we’re going to do that on the ships, then clearly we also need to do that in our land-based facilities because it all has to be consistent, it has to tie together,” he says. “Here at our headquarters campus, obviously this is the location from which we direct our overall global effort, and if we want to have that type of situation out at sea then we need to be sure we have that type of situation here at headquarters.”

“It’s just fantastic how we’ve been recognized, Goldstein continues. “And we see that not only in terms of big public awards like this one, but in the number of serious companies – well-established, well-known companies – who are now coming to us and asking how are we doing these things, what are our methods, to see what techniques they can adopt from the techniques and behaviors that we’re demonstrating.”

With focused efforts, he says, RCL went from being a company with the right instincts and motivations “to a place where we are in the absolute forefront of how to construct and sustain workplace environments that are open and tolerant to the full array of diversity.”

Royal Caribbean testing intelligent elevator on Harmony of the Seas


Royal Caribbean informed guests on Harmony of the Seas they are testing a new "intelligent elevator" to improve the guest experience.

Rick Cincotta of Cruise Life Group spotted this new test on the Harmony of the Seas sailing this week.  The test is being tested on, "some of the decks".

Royal Caribbean states the goal of this test is to, "connect you to your destination in a faster and more efficient way."

There are 28 KONE Minispace™ elevators and 14 KONE Monospace® elevators on Harmony of the Seas.

Royal Caribbean Post Round-Up: December 3, 2017


Another week has gone by and that means we are all one week closer to our next Royal Caribbean cruise!

Royal Caribbean announced earlier this week it will expand sailings to Cuba, as well as add two new ports to visit.

Majesty of the Seas will begin offering sailings to Cuba in 2018, becoming the second Royal Caribbean ship to sail to Cuba after Empress of the Seas. The new Cuba ports will of Santiago de Cuba and Cienfuegos on the southeast coast, will be visited by Royal Caribbean and add a new dimension to an array of 4- to 8-night Caribbean adventures on Empress of the Seas.

All sailings to Cuba will offer shore excursions designed for guests to experience the destination and to comply with the people-to-people educational exchange activities requirement as set forth in the U.S. regulations.

Royal Caribbean News

Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast

The 226th episode of the Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast is now available and this week, Matt shares his review of Independence of the Seas.

In this episode, Matt returns from a 4-night Western Caribbean sailing on Independence of the Seas, and shares his thoughts on the ship and what he did onboard and onshore.

Please feel free to subscribe via iTunes or RSS, and head over to rate and review the podcast on iTunes if you can! We’d appreciate it.

Royal Caribbean Around the Internet

The Miami Herald interviewed various CEOs about what consumers really want.

The Real Deal reported Royal Caribbean's CEO sold his waterfront Miami home.

Asia Food Journal wrote about how Royal Caribbean does food preparation while at sea.

The Street shares how Royal Caribbean uses cruise bookings to predict the economy.

Photo tour of Category 6B Spacious Ocean View Stateroom with Balcony on Independence of the Seas


Here is a look at the category 6B Spacious Ocean View Stateroom with Balcony Stateroom, which will take you through the cabin to provide an idea of what to expect if you book this category stateroom.

On Independence of the Seas, we reviewed stateroom 7234, which is located on Deck 7 near the forward elevator bank.  The distance to the elevators is quite short, so it made for an easy walk whenever we were forward.  Moreover, it was only two decks from the Royal Promenade, so we were able to do a lot of stairs instead of relying on the elevators.

Entry to the stateroom is by magnetic key card, which is above the door handle.

The room also has a rather large sofa to sit on during the day.

The bed is joined together but can be split apart if need be. There is a large, flat screen television across from it and two night stands on opposite sides of the bed. Access to the balcony is also on the other side of the bed.

This stateroom features a 65 square foot private balcony.

A 6B stateroom features a full bathroom, including a stand up shower.

Video: The Absolute Best Way to Visit Cuba


Royal Caribbean now is sailing to two exciting new ports, in addition to visiting the nations's capital of Havana, guests can now explore Santiago de Cuba and Cienfuegos on the southeast coast of the island. Plus, guests can stay overnight and experience the island’s vibrant night life.

Friday Photos


Friday is here and that means so is the weekend and our opportunity to share Royal Caribbean photos that readers sent us!  Every week, we ask our readers to send in their favorite Royal Caribbean photos, so that we can feature them here.

Enjoy this week's photo set!

We begin with a photo by Melanie Phoenix-Edwards of a family photo after dinner at Chops Grille on Harmony of the Seas.

Next is this photo by Kelli Staack of a beautiful sunset, as seen from the Boardwalk on Harmony of the Seas.

Stephanie Bally shared this photo from her recent cruise.

Here is a photo of Explorer of the Seas in Sydney Harbor, taken by Jarrod Quantrelle.

Jenn Ullram took this photo of Anthem of the Seas, while spending the day at CocoCay.

John Bamber shared his boarding photo from his Anthem of the Seas cruise.

Our last photo this week is from Ken Slusser, and it is of a sunset as seen from the back of Independence of the Seas.

Thank you to everyone that shared these great photos.  Do you want your photo included in our weekly photo showcase?  Use this form to send us your favorite Royal Caribbean photos and we will be sure to show it off to the world!

Royal Caribbean's Ovation of the Seas to return to Sydney


Royal Caribbean's Ovation of the Seas will return to her homeport of Sydney, Australia on Thursday December 7, 2017, which will mark her second season of cruising down under.

After making her way from Singapore via Fremantle, Adelaide and Hobart, Ovation of the Seas returns to her Sydney summer home port for her second and significantly longer season down under.

Celebrating her second birthday in April 2018, she is the first brand new cruise ship to be based here and represents the single largest investment in Australia’s cruise industry.

At 348 meters long, 18 decks high and weighing 168,666 tons, Ovation of the Seas is the world’s equal-fourth largest cruise ship and the largest cruise ship to ever sail Australian waters, with capacity for 5,000 guests and 1,500 crew.

“The return of our billion dollar baby, Ovation of the Seas, marks a particularly special milestone for us at Royal Caribbean and for Australian travelers, because it also marks our 10th season down under,” says RCL Cruises managing director, Adam Armstrong.

“Ten years ago, our philosophy was to bring the world’s most cutting-edge cruise product to Australia’s doorstep. In 2007, we embarked on a cruising revolution with the mighty Rhapsody of the Seas and today, we continue this proud tradition of delivering Australians with the world’s best holidays at sea with the ground-breaking, all-new Ovation of the Seas, one of our four Australian-based megaliners,” Armstrong said.

With capacity for close to 5000 guests, Ovation of the Seas will deliver significant economic benefits to the state each time she calls. Her first visit to Sydney for the season is expected to inject $2.5 million into the NSW economy in passenger spend alone, and $33 million into NSW throughout the season with 13 turnarounds at Sydney’s Overseas Passenger Terminal.

Ovation of the Seas arrives in Sydney at 6:30am with 4800 guests onboard hailing from more than 30 different countries. She will dock at the Overseas Passenger Terminal until 6:30pm, before departing on a 10 night New Zealand cruise.

Symphony of the Seas construction photo update


Royal Caribbean has released a new set of photos that show the construction progress being made on Symphony of the Seas.

Symphony of the Seas, Royal Caribbean's newest Oasis-class ship, under construction at the STX shipyard in France. The ship is scheduled to be delivered in March 2018.

Royal Caribbean expands Cuba sailings in 2018 and adds two new ports


Royal Caribbean announced today it is doubling its sailings to Cuba in 2018, with two ships offering cruises there - Majesty of the Seas and Empress of the Seas.  In addition, Royal Caribbean is adding two new destinations to itineraries.

The new Cuba ports will of Santiago de Cuba and Cienfuegos on the southeast coast, will be visited by Royal Caribbean and add a new dimension to an array of 4- to 8-night Caribbean adventures on Empress of the Seas that open for sale today.

Departing from Miami year-round, Empress cruise vacations will include 7-night Best of Cuba itineraries to Cienfuegos, Havana and Nassau, Bahamas; 5-night sailings visiting Key West, Florida and spending the night in Havana; and an immersive 8-night journey to Cienfuegos, Santiago de Cuba, Grand Cayman, and Labadee, Haiti. Majesty of the Seas will continue the 4- and 5-night offerings to Havana that include day and overnight stays, departing from Tampa from April to October 2018, and Ft. Lauderdale from November 2018 to March 2019.

All sailings to Cuba will offer shore excursions designed for guests to experience the destination and to comply with the people-to-people educational exchange activities requirement as set forth in the U.S. regulations.

“Cuba is such an important part of Caribbean culture, and we can’t wait to call on Santiago de Cuba and Cienfuegos next year, showcasing even more of the country’s scenic beauty, rich history and distinctive architecture,” said Michael Bayley, President and CEO, Royal Caribbean International. “Cruising remains the easiest way to visit Cuba, and with both Empress and Majesty sailing there in 2018 and 2019, we hope to make it that much easier for adventure seekers to experience the legendary island.”