Save up to 30% off pre-cruise purchases with Royal Caribbean Cruise Planner sale

In:
18Sep2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean is offering up to 30% off certain Cruise Planner purchases during its Fall Into Savings sale.

The offer runs between September 18 - September 25, 2019 and is valid on sailings from September 27, 2019 - April 15, 2020. It is valid on all ships, except for Spectrum of the Seas.

BEVERAGE: Up to 30% off on select sailings.

  • Deluxe Beverage Package + VOOM Surf & Stream 1 Device: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC).
  • Deluxe Beverage Package: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC).
  • Refreshment Package: 30% off onboard prices. Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC).

SHORE EXCURSIONS: Up to 25% off on select sailings.

  • Save up to 25% on select tours on select sailings. Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC).

INTERNET: Up to 60% off on select sailings.

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

DINING: Up to 50% off on select sailings.

  • Unlimited Dining Package on 3 Night – 9 Night sailings. Discount varies by ship. (Excludes MJ, SC).

ACTIVITIES: Up to 10% off on select sailings.

  • All Access Ship Tour: 10% off. Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC + Charter Sailings).

GIFTS & GEAR: Up to 20% off on select sailings

  • Strawberries with Champagne: 20% off onboard prices. (Excludes QN, SC, VY)
  • Red Wine & Cheese: 20% off onboard prices. (Excludes QN, SC, VY)
  • White Wine & Cheese: 20% off onboard prices. (Excludes QN, SC, VY)
  • Inky: 20% off onboard prices. (Excludes QN, SC, VY)
  • Chocolate Covered Strawberries: 20% off onboard prices. (Excludes QN, SC, VY)

PHOTO PACKAGES: Up to 25% off on select sailings.

  • Prints – 10: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes AD, AL, AN, BR, EN, EX, FR, HM, JW, LB, OA, RH, SC, SR + Charter Sailings)
  • Prints – 15: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes AL, BR, EN, FR, HM, JW, LB, MA, MJ, NE, NV, OA, RH, SC, SR, SY + Charter Sailings)
  • Prints – 20: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes All Ships + Charter Sailings except AD, AN, HM, LB, OA, OV, SY)
  • Prints – All: Discount varies by ship. (AD, AN, EX, HM, ID, LB, MA, NV, OV, QN, SC, SY + Charter Sailings)
  • Digital – 15: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes All Ships + Charter Sailings except AD, AN, EX, ID, OV, QN, VY)
  • Digital – 20: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes All Ships + Charter Sailings except AD, AN, HM, LB, OA, OV, SY)
  • Digital – All: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes GR, JW, MJ, NE, RD, SC, VI + Charter Sailings)
  • All Digital + Prints: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes All Ships + Charter Sailings except AL, BR, EN, FR, OA, RH, SR)

The Cruise Planner sale promises savings on certain shore excursions and drink package purchases.  Guests can check which discounts, if any, are available for their upcoming sailing by visiting the Cruise Planner site. Keep in mind that not all sailings may see the sale applicable, nor are all offers significantly cheaper than previously posted.

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.

Royal Caribbean eliminates complimentary perks for Oasis Class neighborhood balcony staterooms

In:
18Sep2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Update: Royal Caribbean has extended the neighborhood perks to all guests who booked prior to this decision to end the benefits.

Royal Caribbean announced it will discontinue the extra benefits it offered to guests who booked Boardwalk Balcony and Central Park Balcony staterooms on Oasis Class ships. 

Known as DINE • DRINK • DISCOVER program, Royal Caribbean will remove the program on all sailings departing on and after January 1, 2020.

Guests booked prior to September 18, 2019 in neighborhood balconies sailing from January 1, 2020 through April 2021 will receive a $50 non-refundable Onboard Credit per stateroom, as a consolation for the policy change.  Anyone booked on sailings from January 1, 2020 and after, following the announcement, will not qualify.

If you are wondering why Royal Caribbean made the decision to remove the perks, here is what they said, "Royal Caribbean is always looking for new ways to exceed your clients’ expectations. We’ve been conducting extensive research to better anticipate what matters most to them and will continue to offer countless ways for your clients to make unforgettable memories onboard. We are excited to share some game-changing updates to our inventory and amenity offerings in the coming months."

The neighborhood balcony room benefits began in November 2016.

Tips for choosing a cruise on Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast

In:
18Sep2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Our newest podcast episode is out to help give you a quick "audio escape" to a Royal Caribbean cruise!

Episode 320 is available for downloading, where Matt shares the various considerations to help decide on the right cruise for you.

If you are looking to find that perfect first cruise for you, here are the things to think about to help find the perfect first cruise.

Here’s the podcast page for Episode 320. 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!

Video: The Questions People ALWAYS Ask Us About Royal Caribbean

In:
17Sep2019
By: Matt Hochberg

As you might imagine, we get asked a lot of questions about Royal Caribbean cruises and today we decided to share answers to the most common ones!

Is The Key worth it? Will a drink package save money? Are negative reviews of the ship I'm going on cause for concern? These are just some of the questions we get asked on a nearly daily basis.

To help everyone, we assembled a list of the most common questions and share our advice to provide simle answers to these really common questions.  Our newest video aims to give you answers to your most burning Royal Caribbean questions!

And if you love this video, we have lots of other great cruise videos to watch on our Royal Caribbean Blog YouTube Channel!

By the way, have you subscribed yet? Be sure to subscribe to our channel and never miss a single episode!

So check out the video and then let us know: What exciting new tip did you learn about your Royal Caribbean cruise?

8 things I MUST do on every Royal Caribbean cruise

In:
16Sep2019
By: Matt Hochberg

After a few Royal Caribbean cruises, everyone seems to have their own "traditions" that we do on each and every sailing. These cruise habits are part of what keep us coming back again and again.

Here are a few must-do things that you just have to try on your next cruise too!

8. Eat at the Windjammer on embarkation day

It's not a cruise unless we get to the port a little before noon and get onboard so I can have my first meal in the legendary Windjammer buffet.

Every since my first cruise, I have always had the first meal onboard the ship at the Windjammer, and I think having my first meal here that cements that feeling inside of "I'm really on a Royal Caribbean cruise again".  For me, it is that moment when I sit down with my plate full of food and a big smile comes across my face.

And oh yea, there is lots of good food to be enjoyed here as well!

7. Go for a night swim

Anyone can swim during the day but on a Royal Caribbean cruise, but I love to put on my bathing suit late after the sun goes down and hop in the pool.  

Night swims are a great experience and with the new giant movie screens near the pools on most Royal Caribbean ships, it's fun to take in a classic film while being in the water.  It is a great family activity and the perfect way to end a fun day.

6. Watch the shore excursion channel loop through a few times

This may be just something silly I do but I really love to watch the shore excursion channel in my stateroom when we're laying around.  There's something about the super market jazz music playing in the background or the monotone voice over descriptions that I just like watching it. 

This guilty pleasure is centered around the idea of watching this channel to get an idea of what to expect in the ports of call we are going to visit but I find the channel strangely memorizing and I'm not afraid to admit it!

5. Catch a performance in the Pub

Of all the live entertainment on a Royal Caribbean ship, my favorite evening activity is to sing along to my favorite bar hits in the Pub onboard.

Pubs are available on most ships (Radiance Class and larger), and I love the type of music played.  The tunes in the pub will range from oldies, to '90s, and to decades inbetween. Basically, these are songs you likely know all the words to and likely have heard in many bars before.

While many cruisers equally enjoy the live music in the Schooner Bar at night, the acoustic guitar melodies of the pub are my personal favorite.

4. Sit by the pool while the live band plays

Picture this: a sunny day with maybe just a few clouds passing by, sitting in a lounge chair at the pool deck with an optional drink of the day in your hand and the band playing "Red Red Wine" as you take a sip and close your eyes.  That is the perfect moment on a Royal Caribbean cruise for me.

The live music on a Royal Caribbean cruise is among the best hidden secrets.  Royal Caribbean's dedication to live music has become something I always look forward to and enjoying the live band at the pool is just the icing on an incredible cake.

3. Read the Cruise Compass from cover to cover

When we get back to the stateroom after a great dinner, the first thing I look for is the next day's Cruise Compass newsletter waiting for me on the bed.

Each evening your stateroom attendant will leave the Cruise Compass on your bed (with perhaps a towel animal surprise too) for you to read and I love reading everything inside.  To me, this is the New York Times of cruising and it's just one of those cruising traditions that I love to do.  Sure, I get a sense of what activities are coming up the next day (Michael Jackson line dancing classes anyone?) but it's also fun to just immerse myself in everything going on around the ship.

2. Try the escape room

If I am on a Royal Caribbean ship with an escape room that I have not tried yet, then it becomes a must-do activity.

Escape rooms challenge your brain and teamwork skills by attempting to solve the clues and escape before time on the clock runs out.

Whether you are already a fan of the escape room trend or just eager to try this challenge for the first time, I think you will enjoy the thrill of trying to beat the escape room on select Royal Caribbean ships.

1. Share a photo of the fun with family back home

There is nothing wrong with a little humble brag, and I try to take time on every cruise to take a family selfie and share it with my family who could not join us on the sailing.

Showing folks at home all the fun we are having is a two-pronged strategy. First, it shows off all the fun we are having and offers a chance to gloat just a little.  More importantly, my hope is those same people seeing the photo will be inclined to join us on our next cruise!

Your favorites

Did any of my favorite must-do's make your list?  Share with us your favorite Royal Caribbean traditions in the comments below!

Royal Caribbean Post Round-Up: September 15, 2019

In:
15Sep2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Thank you for joining us for this a look at all the Royal Caribbean news from this week. We had plenty to share, so let us jump right in!

Royal Caribbean released the first set of sailings for Odyssey of the Seas this week, which will begin in November 2020.

Odyssey of the Seas will sail from Port Everglades, Florida upon her arrival in North America.  Odyssey of the Seas will then offer 8- and 6-night Caribbean cruises, which include visits to Perfect Day at CocoCay. Odyssey of the Seas will be the first Quantum Ultra Class ship to call on Aruba and Curacao as part of its 8-night itineraries. 

In summer 2021, she will head over to Europe.

Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast

The 319th episode of the Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast is now available, where Matt quantifies what exactly being on a cruise means and the feelings that being on a cruise evokes.

Coming back from a Royal Caribbean cruise, the transition back to "civilian life" isn't easy, and often we think back about how much we enjoy being back on the cruise. 

Please feel free to subscribe via iTunes or RSS, and head over to rate and review the podcast on iTunes if you can! We’d appreciate it.

New RCB Video: What to know before booking the cheapest room on a cruise

Have you subscribed to the Royal Caribbean Blog YouTube Channel? We share some great videos there regularly, all about taking a Royal Caribbean cruise! This week, we are sharing our latest video — What to know before booking the cheapest room on a cruise — and don’t forget to subscribe here.

Royal Caribbean Around the Internet

Medium interviewed Royal Caribbean's SVP of Digital about Royal Caribbean's digital transformation.

Cruise Fever shared when cruises are the cheapest by cruise line.

B&T Magazine reported Royal Caribbean Australia has picked a new strategic PR firm.

Video: Don't book a cruise because of these reasons!

In:
12Sep2019
By: Matt Hochberg

There are lots of considerations for booking a cruise vacation, but we have five things you should not pay too much attention to when picking the ship for you.

Out of all the important things to know about a ship before you book, I have picked five things you may read or hear about that should not be a reason to book (or not book) a cruise ship.

And if you love this video, we have lots of other great cruise videos to watch on our Royal Caribbean Blog YouTube Channel!

By the way, have you subscribed yet? Be sure to subscribe to our channel and never miss a single episode!

What are some things you think should be ignored when booking a specific ship? Share your experience in the comments!

Odyssey of the Seas will homeport from Fort Lauderdale beginning November 2020

In:
12Sep2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean's next new cruise ship, Odyssey of the Seas, will sail from her homeport of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in November 2020.

Odyssey’s Caribbean cruises are now open for sale; and Europe itineraries will open in November 2019. Odyssey of the Seas begins with an inaugural cruise on November 5, 2020 out of Port Everglades. 

Odyssey of the Seas will then offer 8- and 6-night Caribbean cruises, which include visits to Perfect Day at CocoCay. Odyssey of the Seas will be the first Quantum Ultra Class ship to call on Aruba and Curacao as part of its 8-night itineraries. 

In summer 2021, Odyssey will offer sailings in Europe for summer 2021. 

Odyssey of the Seas will be the second Quantum Ultra Class ships, and offer a number of activities and entertainment.  Royal Caribbean will announce new, soon-to-be-announced experiences soon.  The ship will offer a number of Quantum Class activities, including:

  • RipCord by iFLY sky-diving simulator
  • North Star observational capsule
  • Two70 entertainment venue
  • SeaPlex
    • Trapeze school
    • Full-size basketball court
    • Roller-skating rink
    • Bumper cars

Odyssey of the Seas will be the cruise line's second Quantum Ultra Class ship and is under construction at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany.

Spotted: Formal night name change on Harmony of the Seas

In:
11Sep2019
By: Matt Hochberg

September 13 Update: 

We have received further clarification on this change.  

  • All short itineraries (5-nights or less) offer a “Wear Your Best” evening onboard (in lieu of a formal night).  Royal Caribbean describes it as: Nighttime’s the right time to wear your best look.  That means a step up from your tropical dinner wear, and includes collared shirts, dresses, skirts, blouses and pantsuits.  Jackets, tuxedos/formal wear sports coats and blazers are also appropriate. 
  • Sailings that are 6-nights or longer still have formal nights.  This includes Harmony of the Seas and all sister ships sailing 6+ night itineraries.    

Guests sailing on Royal Caribbean's Harmony of the Seas will no longer see "formal night" listed as a dress code, as it is now referred to as "Wear Your Best".

Mike Chase shared a copy of the Cruise Compass from Harmony of the Seas on Facebook, where the new dinner dress suggestion is listed in lieu of what was formerly known as formal night.

The Cruise Compass on Harmony of the Seas lists a dinner dress suggestion of "Wear Your Best", which is described as "Say goodbye to Formal Night, and hello to Wear Your Best.  Get glamorous. Be Chic. It's time to shine - your way."

The transition from "formal night" to "wear your best" is not new to Royal Caribbean, as we first spotted the change on Mariner of the Seas last year.  That change did coincide with the ship's recent amplification. Similarly, Navigator of the Seas also switched to "Wear Your Best" as part of her amplification. We also spotted the switch on Anthem of the Seas & Enchantment of the Seas.

    What we miss the most on Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast

    In:
    11Sep2019
    By: Matt Hochberg

    Our newest podcast episode is out to help give you a quick "audio escape" to a Royal Caribbean cruise!

    Episode 319 is available for downloading, where Matt talks about what aspects of a cruise do you really miss once you get home.

    It almost goes without saying that a cruise is a really fun vacation, but when the cruise comes to an end, there are certain facets of the overall cruise experience that we tend to miss.  This week, Matt talks about what parts of the cruise he misses once it is all over.

    Here’s the podcast page for Episode 319. 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!

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