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Royal Caribbean talks higher capacity, protocol changes, world cruise and more

In:
30 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean Group's third quarter earnings call on Friday with analysts was full of tidbits that provided insight into what cruise fans and Wall Street investors alike should expect in the coming months.

After releasing its quarterly financials, a trio of Royal Caribbean Group executives took questions from investment firms about the company's health. Included on the call were:

  • Royal Caribbean Group Chairman and CEO Richard Fain
  • Royal Caribbean Group Chief Financial Officer Jason Liberty
  • Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley

While the call primarily dealt with discussing fiscal health and the financial outlook, some answers gave operational insight that is of interest to cruise ship guests.

Royal Caribbean prioritized ships back in service over capacity

What happens if a cruise is oversold above reduced capacity? | Royal Caribbean Blog

There was a conscientious effort by Royal Caribbean to get more cruise ships back in service first, over trying to max out how full the ships were.

Anyone who went on a cruise this summer and fall definitely noticed the limited capacity onboard, which was almost always well before half full.

Mr. Fain talked about why they wanted more ships back sooner, "Like the pilot of a plane during takeoff, prioritizing speed over altitude, we have prioritized spreading the wealth."

"We have prioritized starting up more ships even with lower loads per vessel, rather than trying for higher load factors on fewer ships. We have been executing this in a financially and medically prudent manner."

Top 8 things you should know about going on a cruise in 2021 | Royal Caribbean Blog

He pointed out that in January 2022 the major booking season for cruise begins, and Royal Caribbean Group wants their core markets operating normally as quickly as possible. He believes with as many ships as they have ready to go in January, this will position the company well financially.

"That will put us in an excellent position to have a good wave period. Our bookings are already showing that the public has a great deal of pent up demand and is eager to travel again. We have a long period of poor bookings to make up for, but current booking trends give us a high level of confidence for 2022, especially from the summer on."

Royal Caribbean has been quietly increasing the capacity of its ships even as early as October, as evidenced by cruise passengers who reported seeing sailings with more than 50% capacity.

First Royal Caribbean test cruise should begin today | Royal Caribbean Blog

During the call, Mr. Bayley mentioned Freedom of the Seas sailed at 85% occupancy.

"We've brought back significantly more capacity, ships, beds and berths, than any of our competitors by a significant amount. And what that means is that operationally and logistically, we've already climbed over that mountain and we've now got a large number of our assets available for booking. And more importantly, we've now gone through and absorbed all of those expenses."

So when might Royal Caribbean truly get back to full capacity across the board?

Mr. Liberty said somewhere around summer 2022 is the plan for now, "We are kind of preparing our business to maximize our revenues and profitability in this very kind of lucrative peak summer season."

Future of protocols

CDC wants cruise lines to reconsider mask policies on cruise ships | Royal Caribbean Blog

One of the major obstacles to get more customers back on cruise ships are the Covid-19 protocols that are necessary right now, either as mandated by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or by the cruise line.  So when will those change?

One investor asked Royal Caribbean how they were thinking about vaccine mandates across different age demographics into next year.

In replying, Mr. Bayley provided a glimpse into Royal Caribbean's relationship with the CDC, as well as when protocols could change.

CDC gives cruise lines relaxed face mask guidelines and issues new rules for vaccinated passengers | Royal Caribbean Blog

"I think what's what's happened over this past several months is that we've really got a a focused, collaborative effort and we found the relationship with the CDC has been very constructive."

"While the CSO comes to a kind of a technical end on January the 15th, we will continue our ongoing collaboration with the CDC in terms of the protocols that will voluntarily operate after the CSO expires."

"They certainly, and we, want to make sure that we're operating safely and they're also well aware that some of the protocols that we have in place will naturally fall away as the pandemic moves further and further in the rearview mirror."

"I think as we move into '22, hopefully what we'll see is is the protocols become easier and less cumbersome for our customers."

World Cruise selling extremely well

Royal Caribbean announced its first world cruise to sail in 2023, and if you were wondering who would realistically book a 9 month cruise that costs hundreds of thousands of dollars, the answer was clearly a lot of people.

Within the first 10 days, the cruise was only bookable by repeat cruise guests, and Mr. Bayley indicated already it is 70% booked.

"Within seven days we were 70 percent booked and the average price of a balcony room is $75000 for the balcony. The Royal Suite sold within a week at $760000, and all of these suites have booked with non-refundable deposit."

Mr. Bayley admitted they were surprised how well it sold, "Even we were taken aback by the unbelievable response of our royalty customers. The fact that within a week we were 70 percent booked on a ship that carries around 2,100 guests and is on a nine month world cruise was just remarkable, and I think that's indicative of what we're we're seeing."

Port project update

Report: Royal Caribbean targeting January 2023 opening of Royal Beach Club in Nassau, Bahamas | Royal Caribbean Blog

One investor asked Royal Caribbean for an update on its port projects that it had announced before the pandemic.

Mr. Bayley reiterated some of the short term projects that are still moving ahead, "We did obviously have a plan in place. Pre-pandemic, we pressed pause. We're now re-engaging on all of those plans in the immediate future."

Royal Caribbean will expand Perfect Day at CocoCay with Hideaway Beach | Royal Caribbean Blog

Hideaway Beach

"We have an expansion taking place in perfect day with the addition of Hideaway Beach, which is a new experience that will open in late '22 for Perfect Day."

"The beauty of Hideaway Beach is that it is an adult only area as part of Perfect Day. It will allow us to increase our capacity by approximately 3000 people a day in late 22, which is, you know, obviously going to help improve our overall profitability and drive more more revenue, both both ticket and on board."

Royal Caribbean could finish Nassau Beach Club by May 2023 | Royal Caribbean Blog

Nassau Beach Club

"We're close to finalizing the design and construction plans and the approvals for Beach Club in Nassau, which were we're hoping to start work on that very soon."

New renderings released of Royal Caribbean's new cruise terminal in Galveston | Royal Caribbean BlogGalveston terminal

"We've got a Galveston terminal that's opening in '22 and that will accommodate our Oasis class ships and then future Icon. And of course, that gives us remarkable access into the Texas, Oklahoma and that whole region as a market for drive into."

Royal Caribbean extends ability to cancel cruises, shortens final payment window, and extends Covid-19 assistance program

In:
29 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

Anyone with a Royal Caribbean cruise booked for early 2022 will now have more flexibility in changing plans, as well as when they have to pay it.

Royal Caribbean informed travel agents on Friday of a number of changes related to guest-facing programs, many of which have been well-received by guests.

Here is a breakdown of the major changes just announced.

More time to cancel cruise for a credit

The Cruise with Confidence program has been extended yet again.

The Cruise with Confidence program  will expand to reservations confirmed on or before December 17, 2021 and sailing through April 30, 2022.

This program allows guests to cancel a cruise up to 48 hours before their sail date with no penalty in exchange for a 100% Future Cruise Credit.

 

Cruise with Confidence was introduced at the beginning of the cruise industry shutdown in 2020, and was designed to give guests peace of mind that they can change their plans after final payment date.

Ordinarily, guests would incur a penalty for canceling a sailing beyond the final payment date, which is typically 90 days before a sailing commences. Cruise with Confidence provides a great deal more flexibility to change minds with no penalty.

Included with this extension is the Best Price Guarantee, which allows guests to reprice their sailing up to 48-hours prior to the sail date if the price drops.

Credits accrued from the Cruise with Confidence program must be redeemed by April 30, 2022 on sailings departing on or before December 31, 2022, or 1-year from the original sail date, whichever is later.

Final payment window pushed back

Royal Caribbean cancels December 2020 cruises while preparing to restart | Royal Caribbean Blog

The final payment due date on sailings departing through March 31, 2022 will now have until 30 days prior to sailing to submit full payment. 

The change was made to give guests more flexibility in deciding if they want to cruise without forcing a cancellation earlier.

Royal Caribbean said they will not inform guests directly of this change, so that travel agents can do so if they choose.

"Rest assured, no action is needed on your part, and no cancellations will occur until the new final payment date."

Ordinarily, final payment date for a cruise is 90 days before sailing. 

COVID-19 Assistance program extended

One more extension is for Royal Caribbean's COVID-19 Assistance program, which covers passengers if anyone tests positive within 14 days of the cruise, or while onboard.

Vaccinated guests and children not yet eligible to be vaccinated who are sailing on or before April 30th, 2022 will have the following COVID-19 Assistance at no extra charge.

  • 100% cruise fare refund for you, and your Traveling Party, if any of you tests positive for COVID-19 within 14 days prior to the cruise or at the boarding terminal.
  • Pro-rated cruise fare refund if your cruise is cut short for reasons related to COVID-19.
  • If you test positive for COVID-19 during the cruise, Royal Caribbean will cover the costs of COVID-19 related medical treatment onboard, any required land-based quarantine, and travel home for you and your Traveling Party.

Royal Caribbean will add adults-only area to Perfect Day at CocoCay

In:
29 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

A new expansion at Royal Caribbean's private island in The Bahamas will cater to adults.

Royal Caribbean opens Perfect Day at CocoCay | Royal Caribbean Blog

In September 2021, Royal Caribbean teased a new expansion coming to Perfect Day at CocoCay, Hideaway Beach.

The announcement confirmed the expansion and name, but no other details.

During an earnings call with investors on Friday, Royal Caribbean International President and CEO confirmed Hideaway Beach will be an adults-only area.

Top 5 things to do on Royal Caribbean for adults | Royal Caribbean Blog

"We have an expansion taking place in perfect day with the addition of Hideaway Beach, which is a new experience that will open in late '22 for Perfect Day," Mr. Bayley said while talking about port projects on the books. "The beauty of Hideaway Beach is that it is an adult only area as part of Perfect Day."

Mr. Bayley said the new area will increase the capacity of the private island by "approximately 3000" passengers.

Mr. Bayley also added that Hideaway Beach will help improve the cruise line's overall profitability and drive more more revenue, which seems to indicate Hideaway Beach will have an extra cost.

The choice of an adults-only was part of a survey sent to some guests in late September for what sort of activities they would want see added to the island experience.

Hideaway Beach will be located on the western end of the island in a cove area that is slowly being developed.

The western end of the island is undeveloped land, as well as backstage storage and lodging, but it appears those operations can be relocated.

This will be the first expansion of CocoCay since the pandemic, and first since the Coco Beach Club was completed in early 2020.

Explorer of the Seas to begin her test cruise today

In:
29 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

Not only is another Royal Caribbean cruise ship restarting sailing today, but a new homeport is making a return as well.

Explorer of the Seas will get limited dry dock in August | Royal Caribbean Blog

Explorer of the Seas will conduct her test cruise on Friday from San Juan, Puerto Rico.

It appears the test cruise will run between October 29 to October 31.

Explorer of the Seas will be the first Royal Caribbean cruise ship to restart operations from San Juan since it shut down operations in March 2020 due to Covid-19.

Royal Caribbean denies widespread cancellations of Puerto Rico cruises | Royal Caribbean Blog

Explorer will set sail from Puerto Rico with a seven-night itinerary, stopping in San Juan; St Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI); St Croix, USVI; Phillipsburg, St. Maarten; Castries, St Lucia; Bridgetown, Barbados; Basseterre, St. Kitts; and returning to disembark back in San Juan.

This is another simulated cruises required by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) as part of its phased approach to cruise ships restarting in the United States.

Royal Caribbean has been systematically getting its cruise ships back in service by staffing them up, operating a test cruise, and then once they get approval from the CDC, beginning revenue sailings.

The purpose of a test cruise is to demonstrate to the CDC that the onboard health protocols can work, and keep crew members and passengers safe.

 

Explorer of the Seas is the latest Royal Caribbean cruise ship to undergo a test cruise, which have been successful on all the other ships that have conducted them.

If the test sailing goes well, Explorer of the Seas could be ready for her first scheduled voyage on November 7.

What happens on a test cruise?

Two Royal Caribbean cruise ships visited Port Canaveral this week | Royal Caribbean Blog

A simulated voyage (also known as a test cruise) is when Royal Caribbean operates its ships without paying passengers in order to demonstrate the Covid-19 protocols onboard are effective.

Test cruises also serve a dual purpose for the cruise line, as a way to give returning crew members a chance to prepare for paying guests later.

The CDC requires ships starting back up to go through a series of steps that prove the new health protocols onboard and simulate a few scenarios to ensure the ship and crew are prepared for any Covid-19 issues that could occur.

The CDC gives cruise lines the option of completing these requirements over one or multiple sailings, but thus far, Royal Caribbean has always completed its test sailings in just a single voyage.

Some cruise lines required at least 95% of its passengers be fully vaccinated, but Royal Caribbean has not and that is because of the line's dedication to families.

Royal Caribbean has been adamant that it wants families to be able to cruise, including children who are not old enough to get the Covid-19 vaccine.

As a result, Royal Caribbean decided to take the extra time to do test cruises so that it could continue to welcome children onboard its ships.

Royal Caribbean International's senior vice president of Hotel Operations, Mark Tamis, called the decision "obvious" given how many kids sail with Royal Caribbean, along with the cruise line's dedication to remaining a family brand. "A good 20 to 25 percent of our guests are kids."

Royal Caribbean reports $1.4 billion loss, but expects to be profitable for the full year 2022

In:
29 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean Group released its third quarter 2021 financial results, which reflect a $1.3 billion loss while restarting more than half of its ships.

New Royal Caribbean health policies expected no earlier than end of September | Royal Caribbean Blog

In fact, Royal Caribbean Group was able to get two-thirds of its ships back in operation, although the Delta variant of Covid-19 delayed booking progress.

The company championed a few key statistics from the quarter before diving into its financials:

  • Over 500k guests sailed across its five brands, including Royal Caribbean International. Over 1 million passengers are expected before the year ends.
  • By the end of 2021, 50 of the 61 cruise ships in the Royal Caribbean Group should be back in service, representing almost 100% of its core itineraries and approximately 80% of worldwide capacity.
  • Sailings for 2022 are booked within historical ranges and at higher prices than 2019, even when including future cruise credits (FCCs).
  • Guest satisfaction scores and onboard spending per passenger are both at the highest levels in the Company's history.
  • The Group expects to be cash flow positive by spring and profitable for the full year 2022.
  • Constructive dialogue with the CDC leading to the end of the prescriptive CSO in January.

Third quarter results

Royal Caribbean Group posted a $1.3 billion loss for 2021, compared to a $1.3 billion loss in the third quarter of 2020.

The Company also reported Adjusted Net Loss of $(1.2) billion or $(4.91) per share for the third quarter of 2021 compared to Adjusted Net Loss of $(1.2) billion or $(5.62) per share in the prior year. The Net Loss and Adjusted Net Loss for the third quarter of 2021 are the result of the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the business.

The good news is 11 more cruise ships returned to service, which means there are now 40 cruise ships across all the Royal Caribbean Group brands operating today. This represents 65% of the fleet capacity have restarted cruises.

Royal Caribbean test cruise to Alaska should begin today | Royal Caribbean Blog

The Company also reported Adjusted Net Loss of $(1.2) billion or $(4.91) per share for the third quarter of 2021 compared to Adjusted Net Loss of $(1.2) billion or $(5.62) per share in the prior year. The Net Loss and Adjusted Net Loss for the third quarter of 2021 are the result of the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the business.

Cruise ships that operated the Group's core Caribbean, Alaska, and Europe itineraries in the third quarter achieved a load factor of 44%. Core itineraries exclude sailings during the early ramp-up period of up to four weeks and also exclude specialized itineraries implemented during the COVID period (e.g., Singapore, Cyprus). 

Total revenues per Passenger Cruise Day in the third quarter was up 12% versus record 2019 levels driven mainly by strong onboard revenue performance. 

Cruise ship plans and capacity

How to plan a cruise vacation with maximum flexibility | Royal Caribbean Blog

Royal Caribbean Group says it will move load factors up to 65-70% during the fourth quarter.  

The Group expects all ships on core itineraries in the fourth quarter will be cash flow accretive even when including start-up costs.

By the end of the year, the Group expects that 50 out of 61 ships will have returned to service, representing almost 100% of core itinerary capacity and approximately 80% of worldwide capacity. 

Royal Caribbean releases health protocols for first U.S. cruise ship sailing | Royal Caribbean Blog

The remaining ships are expected to return by the spring of 2022 and return to historical load factors in the third quarter 2022. 

They believe Mainland China cruises will resume in the spring, albeit with lower load factors.

CDC and the Conditional Sailing Order

Royal Caribbean Group highlighted the fact the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced a plan to transition the Conditional Sailing Order (CSO) to a voluntary program.

Mr. Fain said of the change, "We are very pleased with the continued and constructive partnership with the CDC and the U.S. government's COVID-19 interagency group."

"This is a great example of how close collaboration between the cruise industry and the CDC results in health and safety protocols that have demonstrated cruising can be one of the safest forms of vacation," Fain continued.

Bookings

Royal Caribbean is first cruise line to restart cruises from Tampa | Royal Caribbean Blog

While the Delta variant had a negative impact on cruise bookings, Royal Caribbean Group said booking volumes have improved "significantly" since the slowdown.

The Company attracted more bookings in the third quarter compared to the second quarter.  September was particularly strong, with new bookings for 2022 sailings more than 60% higher than the monthly average during the second quarter.

Sailings for the full year 2022 are booked within historical ranges and at higher prices than 2019. 

Royal Caribbean extends ability to cancel cruise for a credit until November 30 | Royal Caribbean Blog

"As cases have come down, demand has come surging back.  Consumers are showing their resilience and desire to vacation, and the growing affinity of Royal Caribbean's leading brands, ships and crew. Although there are many uncertainties going forward regarding COVID-19, as well as cost and supply chain pressures, we continue our pathway forward and anticipate positive cash flow for the Group by spring of 2022 and generating positive earnings for the full year 2022," said Jason T. Liberty, Executive Vice President and CFO.

As of September 30, 2021, the Company had approximately $2.8 billion in customer deposits.  The comparable figure for the three brands at the same time in 2019 was $3.1 billion. This represents an improvement of about $400 million over the past quarter despite the $300 million of revenue that was recognized during the quarter.  

Approximately 35% of the customer deposit balance is related to FCCs compared to 40% in the prior quarter; a positive trend indicating new demand.  Customer deposits for second quarter 2022 forward sailings are higher than at the same time in 2019.

Spotted: Royal Caribbean brings back early check-in and welcome lunch to The Key

In:
28 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean is bringing back some of the perks it had previously altered for its VIP treatment program guests can purchase.

RoyalCaribbeanBlog reader, Teresa McChane, received an email from Royal Caribbean before her Freedom of the Seas cruise this coming weekend with a look at her benefits for purchasing The Key, and there are two notable changes.

First and foremost, the option for early check-in at the cruise terminal has returned.

According to the email, guests who bought The Key can arrive to the cruise terminal between 11:00am - 11:30am instead of at the appointment time they received after checking in for their cruise online.

If passengers that purchased The Key are not able to make the early access window, they should arrive within their appointment time and will receive priority access into the terminal.

There will be a signage for guests who bought The Key at the cruise terminal so they can get their priority access.

In addition, the embarkation day meal is back in the Main Dining Room, which features a welcome lunch provided by Chops Grille.

The embarkation day lunch is available between 12:00pm - 1:30pm.

Finally, Royal Caribbean has also brought back the private debarkation á la carte breakfast, replacing the "grab and go" breakfast option.

A few weeks ago, Royal Caribbean brought back The Key to its ships, but with more restrictive changes than what is shown for this upcoming sailing.

Instead of true early access, guests still had to arrive at their booked arrival time.

Royal Caribbean had also swapped the embarkation day welcome lunch in the main dining room for complimentary room service for the duration of the cruise and 25% off onboard dining purchases.

The complimentary room service  and 25% off onboard dining purchases benefit still remains, even with the welcome aboard lunch offered again.

The price of The Key varies, and starts at $25.99 per day, per person, although there can be discounts available to bring that price down.

All guests over the age of 6 in the same room must purchase The Key.

Royal Caribbean Group announces pledge to get to net zero emissions by 2050

In:
28 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean Group announced on Wednesday a new initiative to make its cruise ships as eco-friendly as possible by reducing net zero emissions by 2050.

What was added to each Royal Caribbean ship during its Royal Amplified refurbishment | Royal Caribbean Blog

"Destination Net Zero" is the name of the new program that the company is calling its collective effort.

There are two primary objectives in its pledge to pursue science-based targets:

  • Delivery of a net zero emissions cruise ship
  • A path to net zero emissions by 2050

A comprehensive decarbonization strategy is behind how Royal Caribbean Group will get there, and executives feel now is the time to get moving on that goal.

"Decades ago, we set out on a course to advance sustainability; our vision now is to realize carbon-free cruising over the next two decades," said Royal Caribbean Group Chairman and CEO Richard Fain.

"Today we are announcing the most important destination of all in our company's history – Destination Net Zero – an ambitious strategy to cut emissions, protect our oceans, and ensure the viability of the hundreds of destinations that our guests and crew members care deeply about."

How they will get there

Over 18 to 24 months, Royal Caribbean Group will develop goals to be validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).

The work will begin following the publication of SBTi's marine transport methodology. Science-based targets show companies how much, and how quickly, they need to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to help limit global warming.

The company will set key milestones to ensure they are making progress, one of which will be the delivery of a net zero cruise ship by 2035.

Thanks to optimized hull design and system upgrades such as AC chillers utilizing 30-40% less energy, Royal Caribbean Group has consistently delivered a new generation of ships 20-25% more efficient than their predecessors. 

To reach their goal of net zero emissions, Royal Caribbean Group will pull a lot of levers, including a few already announced. SilverSea Cruises will launch the first hybrid-powered ship set to debut summer 2023, and a wind farm in Kansas will offset up to 12% of the company's scope 1 and 2 emissions per year.

Destination Net Zero's four-pronged approach includes:

  1. Modernization of the cruise company's global brands fleet through the introduction of 13 new energy-efficient and alternatively fueled vessels.
     
  2. Continued investment in energy efficiency programs for its fleet, including energy saving technologies, enhanced data systems and digitalization.
     
  3. Development of alternative fuel and alternative power solutions.
     
  4. Optimized deployment and integration of strategic shore-based supply chains.

Save up to 35% off pre-cruise purchases with Royal Caribbean's new sale

In:
28 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean's Halloween sale begins today on its pre-cruise purchases for drink packages, shore excursions and more.

The No Tricks, Just Treats sale is valid on purchases made between October 28 - November 8, 2021.

It applies to all sailings between November 1, 2021 - October 31, 2022.

Here is what is included during the sale:

Drink Packages | Royal Caribbean Blog

BEVERAGE: Up to 40% off

  • Classic Soda Beverage Package: 30% off onboard prices.
  • Classic Soda Beverage Package + VOOM Surf & Stream 1 Device: Discount varies by ship.
  • Dasani Water Cans: 40% off onboard prices.
  • San Benedetto Water Cans: 40% off onboard prices. (only on. AN, BR, JW, OY, RH, VI, VY, WN)
  • Evian Water Bottles: 40% off onboard prices. (excl. RD, VI, VY, WN)
  • Deluxe Beverage Package: Discount varies by ship.
  • Deluxe Beverage Package + VOOM Surf & Stream 1 Device: Discount varies by ship.
  • Refreshment Package: 30% off onboard prices.

SHORE EXCURSIONS: Up to 25% off

  • Shore Excursions: Discount varies by ship

What is the difference between Royal Caribbean's Voom Surf and Voom Surf and Stream? | Royal Caribbean Blog

INTERNET: Up to 50% off

  • The Key: Discount varies by ship.
  • VOOM Surf + Stream Voyage Package 1, 2, 3, 4 Device(s): Discount varies by ship.
  • VOOM Surf Voyage Package 1, 2, 3, 4 Device(s): Discount varies by ship.

DINING: Up to 55% off

  • Unlimited Dining Package on 3N – 9N sailings: Discount varies by ship

Everything about Two70 on Royal Caribbean's Anthem of the Seas | Royal Caribbean Blog

ACTIVITIES: Up to 20% off

  • All Access Ship Tour (Excludes GR, RD, RH, VY, WN)

Gifts & Gear: Up to 20% Off

  • Anniversary Decorations with Champagne
  • Happy Birthday Decorations with Chocolate Cake & Strawberries
  • Happy Birthday Decorations with Vanilla Cake & Strawberries
  • Inky Beach Set
  • Inky Beach Towel (TicTacToe)
  • Inky Travel Set
  • Red Wine and Cheese
  • Royal Caribbean Beach Towel
  • Strawberries with Champagne
  • White Wine and Cheese

PHOTO PACKAGES: Up to 70% off

  • Photo Packages: From 5 - 100 Print and/or Digital Options: Discount varies by ship
  • Photo Package: Private Photo Session: Discount varies by ship.
  • Photo Package: Picture This Private Studio: Discount varies by ship.

To check if your sailing has this new offer available, log into the Cruise Planner on Royal Caribbean's web site look for any available offers. Keep in mind that not all sailings may see the sale applicable, nor are all offers significantly cheaper than previously posted.

10 Fun Royal Caribbean upgrades under $50! | Royal Caribbean Blog

If you spot a better discount on something you already pre-purchased, you should be able to cancel the purchase and then re-purchase the same item under this promotion.

More helpful information

New Icon Class cruise ship construction update

In:
27 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean posted a new video update with the progress being made on the cruise line's next generation cruise ship.

Icon of the Seas is under construction at the Meyer Turku shipyard in Finland, and we have a closer look at  how the ship will be powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG).

This will be the first Royal Caribbean cruise ship to be powered by LNG.

Traditionally, cruise ships are powered by diesel. The advantage LNG has over diesel is it is more energy-efficient and will reduce fuel consumption and emissions.

LNG is considered to be the cleanest-burning fossil fuel available because it has virtually zero sulfur dioxides and particulates, and a significant reduction in nitrous oxides.

Royal Caribbean's overall goal is to become emission-free.

The LNG fuel tank is 307 tons and 90 feet long, and were installed recently into one of the blocks that makes up the new ship. Royal Caribbean says the two LNG fuel takes are the largest in the cruise industry.

In addition, Icon of the Seas will utilize a shore power connection that removes emissions while connected at port.

Icon will have advanced waste heat recovery systems that repurpose heat to be used as energy across the ship.

Additional details about Icon of the Seas largely remain unknown. Royal Caribbean promises, " it will make waves with a mix of innovations and adventures cruising’s never seen before."

According to Royal Caribbean Group SEC filings in April 2021, the unnamed Icon Class ships will have a capacity of approximately 5,600 passengers.

The first of the revolutionary Icon Class is set to make its debut in fall 2023, and two other Icon Class ships are on order. The other two ships will be delivered in 2025 and 2026.

Top 10 Odyssey of the Seas frequently asked questions

In:
27 Oct 2021
By: 
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean's Odyssey of the Seas is an impressive cruise ship in the fleet that offers some of the latest and greatest features for passengers to enjoy while onboard.

First look around Royal Caribbean's Odyssey of the Seas | Royal Caribbean Blog

Being a new ship, many guests with sailings booked on Odyssey of the Seas are curious to know what there is to do onboard, as well as what makes this ship different from others in the fleet.

Every ship in Royal Caribbean's fleet stands out from others in at least a few ways, and Odyssey certainly has a lot of new additions and distinguishing features.

After scouring commonly asked questions on Google, here are some of the top questions people are searching for on the internet about Royal Caribbean's Odyssey of the Seas.

Is Odyssey of the Seas the biggest ship?

Photos: Odyssey of the Seas arrives in Israel | Royal Caribbean Blog

If you're wondering of Odyssey of the Seas is the biggest cruise ship in Royal Caribbean's fleet or the biggest cruise ship in the world, the answer to both questions is "no".

Odyssey of the Seas is a Quantum Ultra class ship, and she comes in at 347.1m long and 41.1m wide and has a gross registered tonnage of 169,300t. While that is no small ship by any means, she is still smaller than any of the Oasis Class ships.

Aerial photos of Royal Caribbean's Symphony of the Seas | Royal Caribbean Blog

The biggest cruise ship in the world is Symphony of the Seas (soon to be eclipsed by Wonder of the Seas).

Symphony of the Seas measures 228,081 gross tons and is 1,188 feet 1 inch in length (362.12m).

What is a Quantum Ultra class ship?

Odyssey of the Seas will begin sea trials on March 14 | Royal Caribbean Blog

When you read about Odyssey of the Seas, you may hear she is a Quantum Ultra class ship and wonder what makes that different from Quantum Class ships.

In practice, the difference between a Quantum and Quantum Ultra Class ship is less noticeable than the difference between other classes of ships. Think of it more like a sub class of the Quantum Class, rather than a completely different categorization of Royal Caribbean vessel.

Odyssey has the same basic layout and signature activities of a Quantum Class ship, such as the North Star, SeaPlex, Ripcord by iFly, a Royal Esplanade and more.

Royal Caribbean adds new Odyssey of the Seas cruises from England & Spain in 2021 | Royal Caribbean Blog

The real difference is when you look at the layout and additions Royal Caribbean has made compared to her older siblings. Odyssey has been reworked a bit, with a unified main dining room, a SeaPlex that features Playmakers sports bar, and a new resort-style pool deck.

Some other changes you will find on a Quantum Ultra class ship include a SkyPad, the indoor pool is now outdoor, a Teppanyaki restaurant, and a slightly larger size.

Read moreAll about Royal Caribbean's ship classes

Does Odyssey of the seas have Central Park?

5 things to love about Central Park on Royal Caribbean's Oasis Class cruise ships | Royal Caribbean Blog

No, the Central Park area is only found on Royal Caribbean's Oasis Class ships.

How many pools are on the Odyssey of the Seas?

First look around Royal Caribbean's Odyssey of the Seas | Royal Caribbean Blog

There are two main pools on Odyssey of the Seas, and an adults-only Solarium pool.

The main pools have a resort-style theme to it that have in-pool loungers.  Something else different is there are hot tubs on the upper pool deck with a see-through side.

There is a smaller version of Splashaway Bay for kids to enjoy.  While it is not a pool, there are drench buckets, a kids slide, geysers and plenty of ways to cool off.

Does Odyssey of the Seas have laser tag?

Top 25 free things you can do on Royal Caribbean's Oasis Class cruise ships | Royal Caribbean Blog

No, laser tag is not offered on Odyssey of the Seas.

Royal Caribbean offers laser tag on ships that have a Studio B ice skating rink, so that space can easily be converted over to laser tag when necessary.

Does Odyssey of the Seas have a Bionic Bar?

99 days of Harmony: Bionic Bar | Royal Caribbean Blog

Yes, there are robot bartenders on Odyssey of the Seas that can serve you drinks.

The Bionic Bar is located on deck 5 next to the shore excursions desk.

Anyone can order a drink from the Bionic Bar, as it can make alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.

Everything you need to know about the Bionic Bar on Royal Caribbean's Harmony of the Seas | Royal Caribbean Blog

Just go to the one of the nearby tablets and place an order. You have the choice of selecting from pre-defined drink recipes, or creating your own concoctions.  

After submitting your drink order, the robots assemble and serve the drink in the order they came in.

Does Odyssey of the Seas have an escape room?

Royal Caribbean now offering escape room game on Brilliance of the Seas | Royal Caribbean Blog

While there is not a dedicated escape room on Odyssey of the Seas, they still offer an escape room game you can play.

Known as "A Royal Mystery" puzzle challenge, it is a game developed by the same company that creates the escape rooms for Royal Caribbean on other ships.

Held in Two70, this is a complimentary escape room game where teams try to solve a series of puzzles based on clues hidden throughout the room to help solve a whodunit murder case.

Brilliance of the Seas Live Blog - Day 4 - Sea Day | Royal Caribbean Blog

Guests participating have a set amount of time to comb over the details provided, as well as clues and puzzles they will discover until they can solve the case.  

Check the Cruise Compass for when A Royal Mystery will be offered.

Where is the Odyssey of the Seas right now?

Spotted: New Royal Caribbean show celebrating showgirls | Royal Caribbean Blog

Odyssey of the Seas is offering roundtrip cruises from Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Florida for winter 2021-2022.  There are 6- and 8-night sailings to choose from while the ship sails from Florida.

In summer 2022, Odyssey will transition to offer Mediterranean cruises from Rome, beginning in May 2022.

Which restaurants are free on Odyssey of the Seas?

Odyssey of the Seas restaurants | Royal Caribbean Blog

Royal Caribbean provides a number of restaurants that will cost you nothing extra onboard.

  • Main dining room
  • Windjammer Cafe
  • The Cafe @ Two70
  • Coastal Kitchen (suite guests only)
  • Sorrento's
  • El Loco Fresh
  • Cafe Promenade
  • Solarium Bistro
  • Sprinkles ice cream station

In addition, there are specialty restaurants you can dine at that cost extra, but offer cuisines and/or cooking styles not otherwise available onboard.

Read moreOdyssey of the Seas restaurants

Does Odyssey of the Seas have a water slide?

Odyssey of the Seas Live Blog - Day 1 - Embarkation | Royal Caribbean Blog

Splashaway Bay does offer kids a water slide, but Odyssey of the Seas does not have the Perfect Storm water slides found on other ships for guests of all ages.

Located on deck 14, there are two slides for kids to enjoy in Splashaway Bay, a small traditional slide and a tube slide.