Royal Caribbean's newest cruise ship is on her way to Europe.
Wonder of the Seas departed Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on Wednesday to begin her transatlantic crossing.
Wonder of the Seas' departure concludes a brief stay in North America for her inaugural sailings, and she now heads across the pond to sail the Mediterranean waters this summer.
RoyalCaribbeanBlog reader Larry Richman is onboard the crossing and shared some interesting facts about the guests onboard:
- 3648 passengers, which is about about 52% occupancy
- 2102 Americans and 1546 from 50 other countries (53% vs 47%)
- On night seven, Wonder of the Seas will have Royal Caribbean's first balloon drop since before the pandemic and a New Year's Eve party.
The itinerary has already been changed due to rough weather predicted. Royal Caribbean Chief Meteorologist James Van Fleet shared an update that explained Wonder skipped a scheduled stop in Nassau, Bahamas to get ahead of a storm system that is predicted to develop on April 25.
Trans Atlantic Weather Forecast update for Wonder of the Seas (Odyssey and Jewel will be added as we begin crossing too as an FYI): pic.twitter.com/Kbyk1ksOKf— James Van Fleet (@JamesVanFleet) April 21, 2022
Mr. Van Fleet said Wonder of the Seas will sail a bit further south than originally planned to avoid the path of the storm and to avoid seas as high as 5 meters for multiple days in a row.
The move across the Atlantic also caught the attention of Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley, who took to social media to celebrate the milestone.
"It's a BIG day," Mr. Bayley wrote on his Facebook page. "Wonder of the Seas has departed Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to begin her 14-night transatlantic crossing for her first season in Europe!"
"I want to thank the crew onboard Wonder for their work in launching the world’s largest cruise ship! Your passion is what drives our success!"
"Cheers to what lies ahead, and to an amazing season of European explorations! Wonder of the Seas will be back in Florida in November 2022!"
Summer in Europe
Once Wonder of the Seas arrives in Europe, she will begin offering cruises from Barcelona & Rome (Civitavecchia) in May 2022.
From May 8, through October 23, Wonder of the Seas will visit La Spezia, Civitavecchia, Naples, Marseille, Barcelona, and Palma de Mallorca.
Royal Caribbean will have six cruise ships operating in the Mediterranean this year, including another brand new Royal Caribbean cruise ship, Odyssey of the Seas.
Guests sailing onboard Wonder of the Seas can expect from Spain or Italy can expect similar protocols to that of cruises from the United States, with vaccines required for all passengers 12 years or older. Boosters are required if the second dose of the vaccine was administered more than 270 days ago.
For cruises sailing from Italy, all fully vaccinated guests must show a negative result for a PCR or antigen test taken no more than one day before boarding day. For Spain, this timeline is extended by an extra day, so testing two days before boarding day.
Protocols for these Mediterranean cruises are valid through May 31, at which point they will be extended and/or updated.
Return to Florida
When the European cruise season wraps up in October, Wonder of the Seas will return across the Atlantic to offer year-round cruises from Port Canaveral, Florida.
Beginning in November 2022, Wonder of the Seas will offer Eastern and Western Caribbean cruises, including stops at Perfect Day at CocoCay.
Planning a cruise? Here's some helpful articles:
- 2022 Royal Caribbean Cruise Planning Guide
- Guide to cruising with kids on Royal Caribbean
- Answers to common Royal Caribbean unlimited alcohol package questions
- Guide to Royal Caribbean's onboard activities
- How to find a deal on a Royal Caribbean cruise