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Royal Caribbean Cruises Chairman rejects the idea of a "new normal"

05 Jun 2020
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. Chairman and CEO Richard Fain shared a new video with travel advisors challenging the notion of "new normal" as it relates to the world today.

Mr. Fain explained that change is an inevitable part of life, and as it relates to cruising, change is something that has been a key part of Royal Caribbean's mantra.

"Some people, many people are beginning to talk about the next chapter as the new normal. That's a term that I've begun to hate."

"The only constant is change. We don't know how the future is going to unfold. We don't know how long it will take to get beyond this epidemic, and the traumatic changes that we are enduring to deal with it. We do know that things will be different."

"Most importantly, there won't be a new normal for selling cruises, or taking cruises or operating cruises. Change is coming to cruising. Some suggest the cruising in the future will be unrecognizable from what we are used to. That we will go from one constant, unchanging cruise experience before, to a radically different, totally changed cruise experience after. Horse pucky."

Mr. Fain reiterated how important change has been to the makeup of Royal Caribbean, "When we design our ships, we talk about a design formula of one third tradition, one third evolution and one third revolution," he said.  "That formula's worked pretty well for us and it works in the post-COVID world, too. It doesn't stick us in the past, but it isn't a new normal."

Towards the end of the video message, Mr. Fain spoke about the health protocols Royal Caribbean is working on that will be announced soon.

"We will raise the bar even higher on health, safety, sanitation and medical care. We will soon be announcing a blue ribbon panel working to ensure our health safety protocols are unparalleled. We will proceed cautiously and we will learn from our experiences. And unquestionably, we will invest in all these areas more than most of our guests will ever fully see or know."

"As I said, our mantra is continuous improvement. And it means just that everything gets better. Every chance we get."