Smart phone app

First look at Royal Caribbean smartphone app chat feature

In:
Category: 
22Oct2018

Royal Caribbean is actively working to roll out new features to its smartphone app that will eventually be available across the fleet.  In the meantime, they are testing a new chat feature between guests that is available only on Allure of the Seas.

Guests simply need to download the new Royal Caribbean app from the iTunes App store or the Google Play store.  The app and its use are completely free.

Once onboard the ship and logged onto Royal Caribbean's Wi-Fi  network (no internet package required to use the app), other guests will show up as offline or online but are only online if they have the app opened and to the “chat” window. If your travel agent linked your reservation before sailing with a friend or family the will automatically show up.

To add another guest, you need to have their last name, birthday, and reservation number.  If you add someone that was not on a linked reservation by your travel agent, then they must add you as well as you adding them for privacy reasons. 

Messages will show as “Sent” and also “Delivered” to give you an idea if it was seen. To be delivered it seems like you need to have opened the Royal app.

At this time, there are no push notifications of messages at all. You have to open the Royal app and it will have a numbered badge on that chat bubble.

Thanks to Doug G. for sharing his experience with this app on Allure of the Seas!

The app is currently available on 10 Royal Caribbean ships, although the chat feature is only available on Allure of the Seas at this time.  

  • Adventure of the Seas
  • Allure of the Seas
  • Brilliance of the Seas
  • Enchantment of the Seas
  • Independence of the Seas
  • Majesty of the Seas
  • Mariner of the Seas
  • Oasis of the Seas
  • Serenade of the Seas

Royal Caribbean has not shared any kind of timeline for when other ships will be added to the app, nor when a particular feature will become available for use.

Royal Caribbean expands new smartphone app to Majesty of the Seas

In:
Category: 
09Oct2018

Royal Caribbean has added Majesty of the Seas to the list of supported ships that can use the cruise line's new smart phone app.

While there has not been a new release of the app, the list of supported ships in the app now lists Majesty of the Seas in the supported ships area of the app.

Majesty of the Seas becomes to the tenth ship to be able to use the new app. Each ship has varying feature sets, as the app is still under development.

  • Adventure of the Seas
  • Allure of the Seas
  • Brilliance of the Seas
  • Enchantment of the Seas
  • Independence of the Seas
  • Majesty of the Seas
  • Mariner of the Seas
  • Oasis of the Seas
  • Serenade of the Seas
  • Symphony of the Seas

The app is available for download on the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.

Royal Caribbean expands new smartphone app to Brilliance of the Seas

In:
24Sep2018

Royal Caribbean has quietly added Brilliance of the Seas as one of the ships in the fleet to be able to use the cruise line's new smart phone app.

While the app has not been updated, the list of supported ships in the app does now list Brilliance and we were able to pull up an upcoming Brilliance of the Seas sailing for use in the app.

 

Royal Caribbean has been expanding the apps to include more ships recently, with Independence of the Seas, Adventure of the Seas and Mariner of the Seas all added recently.  Moreover, Allure of the Seas is currently testing a new chat feature.  

There are currently nine ships supported by the new smart phone app, with each ship offering varying feature sets.  These include:

  • Adventure of the Seas
  • Allure of the Seas
  • Brilliance of the Seas
  • Enchantment of the Seas
  • Independence of the Seas
  • Mariner of the Seas
  • Oasis of the Seas
  • Serenade of the Seas
  • Symphony of the Seas

The new app is being actively developed, which means not all features area available on the app yet.  Moreover, the cruise line is slowly rolling out support for more ships.

The app is available on the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.

Royal Caribbean adds chat feature to Allure of the Seas

In:
20Sep2018

Royal Caribbean has released version 1.10.2 of its new smart phone app, which prepares to add Brilliance of the Seas to the smartphone app as well as adding the much-anticipated chat feature to Allure of the Seas.

The chat feature allows guest-to-guest chat on Allure of the Seas.  Guests may link to other staterooms and chat with friends and family for free.

Allure of the Seas is the first Royal Caribbean ship to offer the chat feature and marks a major step forward in the app's development.

The app is available on the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.

Royal Caribbean expands new smartphone app to Adventure of the Seas

In:
06Sep2018

Royal Caribbean has released version 1.10.0 of its new smart phone app, which adds support to Adventure of the Seas.

The new version does not list Adventure as a supported ship in the app store, but opening the app shows both ships on the list.  Some blog readers have reported seeing Brilliance of the Seas and Majesty of the Seas supported in their apps, but we have not been able to see that on our devices.

Independence and Mariner of the Seas were recently added as well.

The new app is being actively developed, which means not all features area available on the app yet.  Moreover, the cruise line is slowly rolling out support for more ships.

The app is available on the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.

Royal Caribbean expands new smartphone app to Independence of the Seas

In:
02Sep2018

Royal Caribbean has added Independence of the Seas to the list of ships supported by the cruise line's new smart phone app.

While the app store updates do not list Independence of the Seas, the app itself lists Independence among the list of supported ships.  

Independence is the seventh Royal Caribbean ship to be added to the list of ships that can take advantage of the new smart phone app, following Mariner of the Seas, which was added in August.

The new smart phone app is still under development, which new features rolling out periodically.  In addition, not all ships have the same features supported quite yet.  Expedited arrival, folio management, deck plans and Cruise Planner are just a few of the features the new app provides.

The app is available on the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.

Royal Caribbean provides smart phone app and online check-in feature updates

In:
Category: 
15Aug2018

Royal Caribbean issued an update to travel agents on the current status of its new smart phone app and mobile check-in options for guests sailing on select cruise ships.

Royal Caribbean's new smartphone app is available on six ships currently (Mariner of the Seas was recently added), with Allure of the Seas and Symphony of the Seas offering real-time folio access, along with an expedited arrival option.

The folio option allows guests to see all charges being made while on the cruise, directly in the app.  Instead of going to Guest Services for a print out, or checking the stateroom television, the app will offer a real-time look at what they have spent onboard.

Expedited Arrival is part of the mobile check-in process, and once guests complete their mobile check-in in full, they may qualify for expedited arrival. When the guest arrives to the pier with their digital Set Sail Pass, they can go into the Expedited Arrival line. This means these guests can bypass the traditional check-in line and instead check-in very quickly via the mobile station. Royal Caribbean hopes this will mean getting from curbside to onboard the ship in a matter of minutes. Expedited Arrival is currently available on Allure of the Seas and Symphony of the Seas, and will roll out to other ships in the future. 

The new app is still under development, but the arrival of folio management and expedited arrival marks another milestone for its development. Version 1.9.0 of the Royal Caribbean app was released on August 10. The app is available on the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.

Last month, Royal Caribbean introduced the mobile check-in option to the app as well (and its website) for a simpler check-in process.

Royal Caribbean has also introduced recently online web check-in on three of its ships to offer a cleaner traditional check-in process.

While online check-in is available for all Royal Caribbean ships, the enhanced online web check-in is a new features fewer steps needed for check-in completion, along with some other improved functionality:

  • Option to check in one person or your entire party simultaneously
  • Ability to edit previously entered information without repeating any steps
  • Easy add-guest or remove-guest functionality from check-in process
  • The ability to stop and save at any point
  • Easily pick up where you left off on either the website or the Royal Caribbean mobile App check in
  • Convenient digital SetSail pass for mobile use at terminal

Guests can check-in from 90 days to 72 hours prior to the sail date. If a guest misses the check-in window, the guest has the option to check-in at the Port.

Royal Caribbean talks Symphony of the Seas, new app progress, big demand in Caribbean and more

In:
02Aug2018

During Royal Caribbean's second quarter 2018 financial call with investors, the company shared some interesting anecdotes, facts, and insight into the ever changing cruising environment.  While most of the information discussed in these earnings calls deal primarily with financial indicators, cruise guests can glean some insight into how Royal Caribbean runs its business.

Symphony of the Seas debut has been spectacular 

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (RCL) Chairman and CEO Richard Fain started off the call with investors beaming about the positive response Symphony of the Seas has received in her inaugural season in Europe.  Fain indicated that not only is the ship booked well, but guests are raving about the experience and the high level of service they are experiencing.

"Her performance for a first time ship in a new market. For her to perform so amazingly well when she is the fourth in a series, is a testament to the innovations the team has incorporated and the power of the Royal Caribbean International brand.

This ship has remarkable new wow's, new shows, and new activities, but what truly sets her apart is the careful execution and high level of service which have been pivotal in achieving these record-breaking ratings."

Smart phone update

Of particular interest to Royal Caribbean cruisers is an update was given on the progress being made with the cruise line's new smart phone app and technology innovation, known as Project Excalibur.

Fain offered an update on where the project stands, and seemed bullish on the prospects of rolling the app out to most ships in the fleet by the end of 2019, as well as the progress being made.  There were no specific updates in terms of when certain functionality will be completed, but it did sound like they wanted to get it right the first time, instead of just pushing out an app that may or may not work well.

"The program is on track and the progress is impressive. We have taken a methodical, hands-on approach to this implementation, rolling out new upgrades on a monthly basis or even more frequently. We're finding that this 'softly softly' approach allows us to move more quickly, but also to correct the errors early before they impact a lot of vacations.

We continually add features to the app, and we remain on our trajectory of having half the fleet connected by the end of this year and most of the rest by the end of next year.

The most complete version of the app today is on Symphony of the Seas, and in December, that distinction will be taken over by Celebrity Edge.

One interesting milestone is the introduction of frictionless arrival.  We have been rolling this out on a limited basis and expect that it will be operational on a large scale basis on Symphony of the Seas and on Celebrity Edge later this fall.

By the way, we recently trademarked the term 'frictionless', so don't expect to see that being used by any other cruise line."

Higher onboard revenue is up (again)

If you spend time listening to these earnings calls, one trend that continued again this quarter was higher spending by guests, namely in the form of drink packages and other packages that can be purchased online or onboard.

In short, a lot of Royal Caribbean's revenue can be traced back to guests not only booking cruises in droves, but also because they are spending more than ever once onboard.

RCL Chief Financial Officer Jason Liberty spoke about onboard spending during his summary of the quarter, "The beat was driven by stronger than anticipated close-in demand, and better than expected onboard revenue spend.

Onboard areas, such as beverage, specialty dining and internet, helped deliver a 5.5% year-over-year increase in onboard revenue."

Mariner of the Seas singlehandidly helped drive up Caribbean demand

If there is one ship not named Symphony of the Seas that has hit a home run for Royal Caribbean, it is definitely Mariner of the Seas.  Mariner of the Seas has the distinction of being a very popular choice with consumers that are looking for short cruises, and has been a boon for the cruise line in terms of being booked well and driving up revenue.

In providing an overview of the Caribbean cruise market, Jason Liberty spoke about the impact Mariner of the Seas has had, "Demand for the Caribbean sailings has been strong, with bookings trending ahead of last year's very storng numbers. Our Caribbean capacity is up in the back half of the year, due mainly due to the addition of the reimagined Mariner of the Seas for the short Caribbean market.

Our strategy behind modernizing the Mariner of the Seas was to offer the best alternative for a short Caribbean getaway as a response to consumer trends. The younger generations are opting for shorter, more frequent vacations and the Mariner of the Seas is very well positioned for this segment with onboard activities, dining options, and entertainment similar to those on Oasis class ships.

Mariner of the Seas is booked very well and we are particularly excited about 2019. While we generally don't expect to recieve many bookings for short Caribbean sailings that are more than six months away, Mariner of the Seas' load factors in the first half of 2019 are closer to those of seven-night products than they are to shorter products."

Lessons learned from 2017 hurricane season

Towards the end of the call, an analyst asked Royal Caribbean's leaders about any lessons learned from the 2017 hurricane season that they can apply to the 2018 hurricane season.  This was an opportunity for Royal Caribbean to talk about the impact the cruise line had on the people affected by the storms, and the positive public relations and humanitarian response that Royal Caribbean saw.

Richard Fain spoke about the lessons learned, "We felt our response last year was really ended up being quite good. Probably built up a fair amount of good will from the way we handled it, and I'm not sure that from a pure financial point of view we learned much that would significantly change the outcome if you had, again, a hurricane that exactly tracked as our ships itinerary and exactly hit the ports of call on the days that they would be most impactful. So we constantly try and learn, and obviously there are always some lessons to be learned, but overall, I think we felt that last year we did pretty well.

I do think though that people should be impressed by how well the destinations responded afterwards. These were horrific events for them, but now people are reporting back and travel agents, which are always an important source of information as well as internet chatter, shows how well they've recovered and I think that may help us a little bit in terms of assuaging the concern that people had that if they went to some of these destinations afterwards they would encounter a bad experience. And that simply hasn't been the case."

Royal Caribbean provides official update on new smart phone app

In:
Category: 
24Apr2018

Royal Caribbean offered travel agents an official status update on the new Royal Caribbean app for smart phones.

Royal Caribbean says the new app is already available on Symphony of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, and "currently being tested on other select ships."  The capabilities of the app vary from ship to ship and new functions will be "rolling out across the fleet throughout the year."

If you download and open the new app, the app lists the preview ships are

  • Allure of the Seas
  • Enchantment of the Seas
  • Oasis of the Seas
  • Serenade of the Seas
  • Symphony of the Seas

The app takes advantage of the new Universal Guest Account, which was rolled out to, "deliver many capabilities of our digital cruise experience, to simplify the guest experience online and to allow guests to quickly access features and information."

The app is available on the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.

Royal Caribbean updates new smartphone app and enables login & features for Allure and Symphony

In:
29Mar2018

Royal Caribbean has released version 1.6.2 of its new official Royal Caribbean International app, which locks down the app to select ships, introduces a login feature, and opens the app up a bit more to two ships.

With the 1.6.2 release, guests on Allure of the Seas and Symphony of the Seas have access to improved guest accounts, and can make reservations for specialty dining restaurants.

Guests on Symphony of the Seas may now take advantage of the app’s online check-in functionality.

The app is now available on Allure of the Seas, Enchantment of the Seas, Oasis of the Seas, Serenade of the Seas, and Symphony of the Seas. 

The app is available on the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.

Pages