Oasis of the Seas

Royal Caribbean's Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas get high speed internet upgrade


A new satellite network is giving Royal Caribbean flagships record internet speeds and more Wi-Fi capacity than all other cruise ships--combined.

A set of new, custom-built antennae were shipped from Israel to Florida last month, and installed on Oasis of the Seas. Testing confirmed the ships' ability to match the fastest broadband connections on shore.

The internet is being provided by O3b Satellite Communications and works by pairing a new generation of medium-Earth-orbit satellites (originally designed to bring the Internet to emerging markets like sub Saharan Africa) with sophisticated antenna arrays aboard the cruise ships.

The higher internet speeds will make it feasible for a guest to download streaming video or post video clips to Facebook. Royal Caribbean is developing new pricing plans for added service.

The entire process was started in 2012 when Royal Caribbean signed a deal with O3b and is now starting to come to fruition.

And by the time the new system becomes available on Royal Caribbean's newest ship, Quantum of the Seas, Royal Caribbean CEO Adam Goldstein said guests can anticipate "several new, show-stopper uses of the bandwidth."

What surprises? That information, he said, is not yet available for download.

Said Goldstein, "If you're a first-time guest on one of these ships, you won't realize how much work it took to make the wireless so pervasive – or that your cell 'tower' is 4,900 miles over your head. If you are a return guest, you'll be blown away by the improvement. It's that dramatic."

According to Bill Martin, Chief Information Officer, Royal Caribbean, the key to unlocking a land-like experience was reducing satellite latency – the time it takes for something to happen after you hit 'enter.' This breakthrough technology solves that problem, reducing latency from 750 milliseconds to approximately 140 milliseconds. And with each ship's overall capacity exceeding 500mbps during system tests, there will be more than enough bandwidth to go around.

UPDATE: According to Royal Caribbean, the new high speed internet connections will be available beginning August 2014.

Oasis of the Seas Listener Review on Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast Episode 17


Happy Thanksgiving and Hanukkah to all of our podcast listeners! Here's my gift to you, a brand new episode of the Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast!

Episode 17 is now available for downloading and it features our listener Michael Poole who shares his experiences on a recent Oasis of the Seas cruise.

In this episode, Michael returns to share with us how his Oasis of the Seas went. Michael joined us on episode 13 when we previewed his cruise so this week we will compare his original plans with how things turned out. It’s a fun look into Michael’s cruise and I think we can all get a sense of what it was like on his cruise.

Here’s the podcast page for Episode 17. And don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast via RSSStitcher or on iTunes!

Take a listen and as always, let us know what you think! Please rate and review the podcast on iTunes and leave your comments below!

Royal Caribbean launches new 3G cellular service on Oasis and Allure of the Seas


Royal Caribbean and Wireless Maritime Services (WMS) have launched the second phase of 3G cellular data services onboard Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas. 

Having already launched EVDO in November 2010, WMS has followed that up with the launch of UMTS (3G) services.  This marks the first time that both 3G services have been successfully deployed onboard cruise ships, and marks a major milestone in passenger connectivity.

EVDO stands for “evolution data only” which is the 3G path for CDMA carriers.  UMTS stands for “universal mobile telephone service” and is the 3G path for GSM carriers.  

Prior to this, cellular data speeds onboard cruise ships were regulated to 2G speeds, but now guests can experience speeds of four to six times those speeds with these upgrades.

“It’s one thing to have UMTS work in a lab environment, it’s an entirely different and thrilling level of success to have it working as well is it is onboard these ships,” said Tony Patino, vice president of engineering at WMS.  “Leveraging the expertise of our parent, AT&T, the WMS Engineering and Deployment teams have been working diligently to optimize and develop better use of parameters, finely honing our technology in order to achieve this great result.”

WMS recently announced the signing of a new four-year contract renewing its relationship with Royal Caribbean Cruises continue providing cellular at sea wireless services to guests and crew on all existing ships across the Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Club Cruises brands.

Fun things to do on Royal Caribbean: Carousel


Royal Caribbean has made a name for itself by offering fun things to do onboard its ships, especially things that are unique and new to the cruise industry.  When Oasis of the Seas was built, among the many innovations that WOW'ed guests, was something elegant and simple: a carousel.

Located in the Boardwalk neighborhood on Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, is the first ever carousel-at-sea. Hand-crafted and especially designed by Carousel Works for Royal Caribbean International, this full-sized, traditional carousel is truly one-of-a-kind.

Given that the Boardwalk area is inspired by the nostalgic seaside boardwalks of the past, it's a modern tribute to a time gone by. The carousel uses turn-of-the-century carousel designs as its basis down to the very last detail.  Even the original artwork scenery panels located on the carousel’s eight Rounding Boards feature custom painted scenes to highlight the wistfulness of life on the historic boardwalks.

In addition to the great history, the carousel is just plain fun for kids and adults. Eighteen figures are suspended from stainless steel poles along with one ADA accessible chariot that were created from poplar wood populate the carousel.  There are eleven carousel horses that follow a tradition carousel design, including one intricately designed Royal Caribbean lead armored horse, that even features the crown and anchor logo.  Designers also included other animals such as a zebra, giraffe, jaguar elephant, lion and even a crowned frog prince. The stationary chariot on Oasis of the Seas is an elegant peacock, while the stationary chariot on Allure of the Seas is an elegantly adorned traditional carriage.

Be sure to also check out the carousel at night because like the fairs of the past, nighttime is when these rides really shine when they are all lit up.

No cruise on an Oasis-class ship is complete without at least one ride on the carousel, with perhaps an ice cream cone to compliment it.  Handlebar moustache and flapper skirt optional.

Royal Caribbean Blog Episode 3: Oasis of the Seas


We're going BIG on this week's podcast!

We're proud to release episode 3 of the Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast, which is now available and ready for downloading.

In this episode, we're discussing the cruise ship that has changed the world of cruising and arguably had the biggest impact on the cruise industry in recent years, Oasis of the Seas.  Joining me is Beci Mahnken of MEI-Travel, and we're talking about what makes Oasis of the Seas such an amazing ship to sail on.  We're also sharing tips for those who go on an Oasis of the Seas cruise along with more of your listener feedback.

Here is the podcast page for episode 3.  And don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast via RSS or on iTunes!

Take a listen and as always, let us know what you think!

Royal Caribbean seeing high demand for Oasis of the Seas in Europe


Royal Caribbean has taken its highest ever pre-booking registrations from its customers who are excited to try Oasis of the Seas cruise ship in Europe.

Royal Caribbean will offer a limited number of sailings aboard Oasis in fall 2014, when the largest ship in Europe will sail the Mediterranean as well as stop in Southampton, England.

Royal Caribbean reports its reservation teams have had to work overtime as well as hire part-time employees to handle all of the cruise bookings since the ship's European bookings went on sale to Crown and Anchor Society members this week.

Employees from other departments across the business have even been pulled in to answer phones and take bookings, said Royal Caribbean.

Royal Caribbean Associate VP and general manager UK and Ireland Jo Rzymowska spoke about the demand, "The thousands and thousands of pre-registrations to be one of the first to book Oasis of the Seas' European cruises are simply mind-blowing and the ship really is living up to its incredible reputation as being a game changer for the industry."

"We have increased the size of the team and have contingency team members ready across the whole business to handle the peak in calls we are expecting when the ship opens for general sale on Thursday at midday."

Royal Caribbean to offer first booking of Oasis of the Seas in Europe to Crown and Anchor Society Members


Royal Caribbean sent an email to its Crown and Anchor Society loyalty club members that they will have exclusive access to start booking cruises aboard Oasis of the Seas as she makes a quick trip to Europe.

Starting April 9 at 7am eastern, Royal Caribbean will offer Crown and Anchor Society members two full days to make reservations before the general public gets access.

To reserve, please contact the Crown & Anchor desk at 1-877-722-5266 beginning at 7 AM Eastern time on April 9th, 2013.

Royal Caribbean announced last month it was sending Oasis of the Seas to Europe starting in September 14, where she will offer transatlantic sailings as well as a choice of three European sailings.