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Royal Caribbean's new Caribbean itineraries include Symphony of the Seas in New York in 2024

15 Dec 2022
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean will replace Oasis of the Seas in Cape Liberty with the newer and slightly larger Symphony of the Seas.

The cruise line released on Thursday its Year-round and Summer Caribbean sailings for the 2024-2025 cruise season.

A very noticeable change for summer 2024 is Symphony of the Seas deployment to Cape Liberty in Bayonne, New Jersey. Many cruise fans were curious which ship would replace Oasis of the Seas since it was previously announced Oasis of the Seas was headed to Europe in 2024.

Oasis of the Seas in New York with Statue of Liberty

The new itineraries are loaded into Royal Caribbean's website and available for immediate booking. 

Read moreHow to choose the right Caribbean cruise sailing

Here's a look at the new itineraries and what you can expect if you'd like to book a cruise now.

Exterior view of Adventure of the Seas

Adventure of the Seas will sail from Port Canaveral, Florida and offer 6- and 8-night cruises that visit the Eastern and Southern Caribbean.

Enchantment of the Seas will sail from Tampa in the summer and offer primarily 7-night cruises to the Bahamas and Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Freedom of the Seas will sail from Miami between May and July 2024 offering short 3- and 4-night cruises.

Then in late July, she will move to Port Everglades, Florida and move away from short cruises to offer 6- and 7-night cruises to the Eastern and Western Caribbean.

Harmony of the Seas will remain in Galveston to offer 6-, 7-, and 8-night Western Caribbean cruises.  Notably, the 8-night cruises will visit Perfect Day at CocoCay, which has not traditionally been offered from Galveston.

Icon of the Seas aerial aft at Cococay

Icon of the Seas will sail from Miami. Her deployment was already announced when her sailings went on sale earlier this year.

Liberty of the Seas will offer longer cruises from Cape Liberty, with Bermuda and Eastern Caribbean cruises.

Liberty will also offer cruises to Bermuda and Canada/New England.

Wonder and Freedom in CocoCay

Vision of the Seas will continue to sail out of Baltimore, Maryland and offer 8-night Southeast Coast cruises along with 12-night cruises to the Southern Caribbean. 

There are also cruises to the Bahamas and Bermuda, along with Canada sailings.

Wonder of the Seas will continue sailing year-round out of Port Canaveral with alternating Eastern and Western Caribbean cruises.

View all the new 2024-2025 year-long and summer Caribbean itineraries:

When will the other 2024 itineraries be released?

Mariner of the Seas docked in CocoCay

Royal Caribbean has not announced when the rest of the 2024-2025 cruises will be released.

Historically, Royal Caribbean typically releases its new itineraries in two batches: first around November/December, and then again in the spring around March/April.

Suffice to say, it is not likely to get anymore deployments before the end of the year.  When Royal Caribbean does release a new deployment schedule, we will share that here on this site.

Why booking a 2024 cruise now is so important

Royal Suite

Booking a cruise more than two years in advance might seem crazy, but the reality is it's one of the best times to book a cruise.

There are two compelling reasons to book a cruise super early, especially when new itineraries are released.

First, certain stateroom categories that usually in high-demand will be readily available when new cruises are released. Suites are especially limited, and typically are the kind of cabin that get booked up quickly.

Couple in Junior Suite

Second, some of the best rates can be found when booking well in advance.

Since cruise fares are based on supply and demand, prices tend to be lowest when new itineraries are released because inventory is at its greatest. 

Combine the lower prices with bargain hunters looking for suites, and you'll find a lot of veteran cruise fans booking up highly sought after cabins on popular sailings, such as holidays.

Planning on booking a 2024 cruise? These stories will help:

Why January is the best time for last-minute cruises

14 Dec 2022
Jenna DeLaurentis

When can you find the cheapest price and best weather for a cruise vacation you book with just weeks to go before you set sail?

Mariner of the Seas sailing away

Whether you’re escaping the snow or simply looking for a tropical getaway, booking a Royal Caribbean last-minute cruise in January is a great idea. After all, why spend your days shoveling snow when you can be sipping a cocktail in the Caribbean?

One of the best surprises you can find when browsing Royal Caribbean’s website is a cheap, last-minute cruise deal. Last-minute deals can save you hundreds of dollars on cruise fare and provide a spontaneous getaway.

And although you can find last-minute cruise deals at any time of the year, the winter months can be the best time to sail at the last minute. Not only will there be more ships to choose from, but you can take advantage of more comfortable temperatures and fewer crowds.

Here’s why January is the best time for last-minute cruises on Royal Caribbean.

Escape the winter blues

While snowy landscapes are often welcomed during the holidays, January can feel like a never-ending month of cold. As cozy as sipping hot chocolate by the fireplace can be, cabin fever can get the best of anyone during the coldest, darkest months of the year.

RelatedThe best time to go on a Caribbean cruise

There’s no better way to escape the winter weather than with a Caribbean cruise! Booking a Royal Caribbean cruise during January can give you that extra boost to get through the winter season, and there’s something extra wonderful about suntanning on a beach when everyone else is freezing back home!


By the time January rolls around, most people are settling back into their routines after a busy holiday season. It’s back to work and school for the majority of families, meaning demand for cruises in January is far less than just a few weeks prior.

Due to less demand, you’ll have a much higher chance at finding a last-minute deal in January compared to the peak season. Keep an eye out for January cruise deals starting in November each year and check frequently to make sure you’re aware of the best deals being offered.

Rock wall on Allure of the Seas

Another perk of sailing during the off-season is having fewer crowds onboard. Although most Royal Caribbean ships are currently sailing at nearly 100% capacity, you’re likely to find fewer crowds on a January cruise compared to sailing at the busiest times of the year.

Fewer crowds means shorter lines for onboard activities, less chances of shore excursions selling out, and less crowded venues onboard.

More ships in North America

Ship docked in Caribbean

The summer season sees Royal Caribbean ships around the world–from Europe to the Caribbean and Alaska. In the winter, however, most Royal Caribbean ships offer cruises from North America.

The abundance of ships in North America means there are more opportunities to find last-minute cruise deals. Not only that, but you can have more flexibility over which ship to book.

Related: Royal Caribbean’s 7 ship classes ultimate guide

Everything from the smallest Vision Class ships to all five Oasis Class ships sail to the Caribbean during the winter months, so you’re guaranteed to find a cruise that works best for you.

Weather in the Caribbean

The Caribbean remains warm year round, but winter weather can be more ideal than what you’ll encounter during the other months of the year.

You can expect less humidity and more comfortable temperatures than what you’ll find during the summer months. Plus, hurricane season is not a concern during January.

January can also be a great time to book shore excursions you wouldn’t otherwise book during the warmest months of the year. Visiting Mayan ruins in Mexico, hiking in St. Kitts, and exploring downtown Cozumel can be much more enjoyable in January compared to July or August.

Related: Best shore excursion in every Caribbean cruise port

Perfect Day at CocoCay aerial of South Beach

The only downside to the lower temperature and humidity is the possibility of feeling cold on your tropical winter escape. The further north your cruise ports are located in the Caribbean, the more likely you’ll encounter chilly temperatures.

It’s not uncommon to see January averages in the Bahamas in the low 70s, which can surprisingly feel quite chilly on cloudy and windy days. Ocean temperatures can be colder, too, making swimming less comfortable.

All things considered, weather is unpredictable and, more often than not, you’ll encounter warm, sunny skies on a cruise in January. Regardless of whether the forecast shows 70°F or 85°F, it will almost certainly be warmer than the weather back home!

Fewer kids

Royal Caribbean may be a family-oriented cruise line, but some guests may prefer the onboard experience with fewer kids and families onboard. January can be a fantastic time to find a more relaxed, older demographic on Royal Caribbean ships.

With the exception of the weekend before Martin Luther King Jr. Day, most kids will be in school and unable to cruise. Therefore, far fewer families and children will be onboard your cruise ship.

Related: 50 best cruising with kids tips & secrets

If you do have kids and are looking to cruise in January, though, you’ll still find plenty of families and kids with whom your children can mingle. All Adventure Ocean programming and kid-friendly activities will be available as normal, although there may be a smaller percentage of kids compared to what you'd find on a sailing during school holidays.

Looking for more tips & tricks on booking a cruise? Start here:

Royal Caribbean announces plan to build first carbon-neutral cruise ship

14 Dec 2022
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean took a major stride toward sustainable cruising with its latest announcement.

Ship sailing

In conjunction with the Finnish government, Royal Caribbean Group signed a deal with the Meyer Turku shipyard on Wednesday that commits a plan for the production of climate-neutral ships in Finland. 

Both the cruise giant and Finland want to establish a roadmap for a maritime industry green transition as a way forward for innovative and sustainable shipbuilding in Finland. 

The declaration was signed with the Finnish government, represented by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment (MEAE) and Meyer Turku Oy.

Royal Caribbean Group Announces Strategic Agreement with Meyer Turku Oy, Finnish Government

Today's announcement also secures the partnership Royal Caribbean Group already has with the Finnish government.

There are six tenants to today's deal:

  • Preparing a roadmap for the production of climate-neutral ships in Finland. The roadmap is part of the maritime industry's green transition.
  • Strengthening the innovation of Meyer Turku, Royal Caribbean Group and the maritime industry.
  • Supporting networking to curb economic challenges, develop new solutions and secure the long-term viability of the maritime industry.
  • Assembling a digital demonstration of a climate-neutral ship as part of the sustainable maritime industry development program of the Ministry of Labor and Economy.
  • Strengthening the innovation of Meyer Turku, Royal Caribbean Group and the maritime industry.
  • Piloting and testing new innovations and technologies on Royal Caribbean Group ships.

"Our partners in Finland have helped us deliver some of the world's most impressive and sustainable ships of their time, including our newest ship debuting in January 2024, Icon of the Seas," said Jason Liberty, president and CEO of Royal Caribbean Group.

"This new partnership sets the stage for future innovations and allows us and the maritime industry to continue pursuing sustainability at the highest level."

This is yet another step by the Royal Caribbean Group to get to net zero emissions by 2050.

Known as its Destination Net Zero strategy, the company has plans to decarbonize its operations by 2050.

It also aims to reduce carbon intensity by double digits by 2025 compared to 2019 and the introduction of a net-zero cruise ship by 2035. 

What does carbon neutral mean?

Carbon neutral means having a net zero carbon footprint, meaning that the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere is balanced by the amount removed.

This can be achieved through various methods, such as offsetting emissions through carbon credits or investing in renewable energy sources.

Essentially, it means that an individual, organization, or event has no net impact on the environment in terms of carbon emissions.

As part of Destination Net Zero, Royal Caribbean Group's 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.

Royal Caribbean Group CEO talks ordering new ships, port projects & more

13 Dec 2022
Matt Hochberg

With the new year nearly upon us, Royal Caribbean is looking forward to a new year of growth and its top executive seems very optimistic for what the future holds.

Wonder of the Seas aerial rear

Royal Caribbean Group CEO Jason Liberty took the helm of the company at the beginning of 2022 and has worked through guiding the company to rebound from the depths of the cruise industry shutdown.

There's no doubt things look better today on the company's balance sheet than a year ago, but beyond the numbers, what does he think of where things are going?

Wonder of the Seas naming ceremony

During the naming ceremony for Wonder of the Seas, Royal Caribbean Blog had an exclusive sit down interview with Mr. Liberty to get his sense of where things are today and what the future holds for the brand.

State of the Cruise Union

Wonder and Freedom in CocoCay

When asked about how he sees things at the moment, he feels confident in the sense things are returning back.

"All the assets that made us everything that made us so great pre-pandemic is all back," he started saying about the business today. "Our load factors are returning to normal, the experience is exactly what it was pre-COVID, if not even better. Our incredible crew are well trained and enthusiastic and ready to go."

In short, he sees the trajectory on the right course, "when we look at our business, whether it's corporately or by brand, everybody's accelerating."

When will Royal Caribbean order more ships?

Icon of the Seas float out December 2022

When Mr. Liberty was the Chief Financial Officer in 2019, he told investors he regretted the company didn't spend more money on new ship orders during the financial crisis of 2008.

There is definitely regret that we have in terms of our pullback on our growth, we would all be talking about higher earnings numbers today, better return profile today, if we hadn't slowed down our growth or our investment efforts in expanding our global footprint, investing in different projects, that would have put us an even stronger position than we are today.

It seems to me given the financial slow down of today coupled with the fact Royal Caribbean Group hasn't placed any orders for new ships recently that history is repeating itself and if we can expect new ship orders soon.

One thing he mentioned was the time to build is different today.

"Back in the financial crisis, on average, it was taking about three or four years to get a ship when you ordered it, especially a ship that was not a new design. "

"The level of demand for new ships was so high that you had to order ships much further out in order to have access to those slots. So you were seeing people order ships six or seven years out."

"We have a little bit more runway here than what we had pre-pandemic or in the financial crisis."

"If you think about the Icon one's and the Icon two's, there's a little bit more breathing time for us to have to place in those orders because of that structural change pre-pandemic."

Icon of the Seas construction aerial photo from September 2022

While he didn't commit to any kind of plan or reveal anything new, he did talk about the direction of growth, "we're going to grow our business over the next five years at about 6% a year."

"We have to get our footing here into 2023. But I think we want to continue to grow our fleet."

What's happening with Royal Caribbean's port projects announced before the shutdown?

Just before the cruise industry shut down in 2020, Royal Caribbean had announced plans for a number of new port projects that would provide cruise ship guests more to do while ashore.

These plans included new private islands, beach resorts, and revamping a current private island. The promise was exciting new places to spend your day while on a cruise.

Then the world had to deal with Covid-19 and those plans seemed to fall to the sidelines as Royal Caribbean struggled with an extended shutdown coupled with crippling loans to stay in business.

Royal Caribbean's Freeport project

But what about those other projects? Are they cancelled? Still planned? And when can we expect to see them?

"Certainly we had to put a pause on some of these things... but our ambitions around Perfect Days around the world, Beach Club concepts, are still very much there."

Mr. Liberty also pointed out that construction on land can take significantly longer than you might thing.  Perfect Day at CocoCay took almost seven years, as an example.

Perfect Day at Lelepa artist rendering

I asked Mr. Liberty if it's fair to say all the projects announced pre-pandemic were in some status of pause or moving forward, as opposed to being cancelled.

"Yeah, there's nothing that has has been canceled."

Both Mr. Liberty and Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley both said the new adults-only beach expansion to Perfect Day at CocoCay is slated to open towards the end of 2023.

Cruise prices in 2023

Search results

It's no secret that prices for travel are up in general, so what is Mr. Liberty's outlook on the price of a cruise and how that affects the average cruise ship passenger.

"Our customers tend to have a pretty strong personal balance sheet. They're not overly levered. And that space just in the US alone, has trillions of dollars of savings sitting there on the sidelines."

Coupled with the fact consumers are interested in experiences more so than acquiring things, along with demographic trends, he feels good about demand for a cruise vacation.

Couple in Solarium

He also still believes the value of a cruise is second to none in the leisure travel market.

"The value gap between a cruise and land based vacation during the pandemic expanded quite a bit."

"As we increase our pricing, we're still at a significant value to what it would cost for you to have anything close to a similar experience on land. That's also why our pricing, what our guests are willing to spend on our ships, continue to rise because of the demographic secular trends as well as just that value gap to land based vacations."

What can we expect with Terminal G?

Cruise ship docked in Miami

Last month, Royal Caribbean Group signed a deal with PortMiami to build a new Terminal G cruise terminal.

Mr. Liberty said it won't quite be on the same scale as Terminal A in PortMiami, but it will help support the company's needs, "we have a lot of ships coming online. We need infrastructure. We need to make sure the experience from from when you arrive to getting on our ships is seamless and free and has no friction inside of it."

"That commitment to us is really just our commitment to our growth that we know is coming on."

Royal Caribbean removes Concierge Lounge access for Diamond Plus members

12 Dec 2022
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean has removed one benefit of its customer loyalty program for its top tier members.

Radiance of the Seas concierge lounge

One of the published benefits of Diamond Plus members has been access to the Concierge Lounge on ships that lack a Suite Lounge, including:

  • Quantum of the Seas
  • Anthem of the Seas
  • Ovation of the Seas
  • Radiance of the Seas
  • Brilliance of the Seas
  • Serenade of the Seas
  • Jewel of the Seas
  • Explorer of the Seas
  • Grandeur of the Seas
  • Enchantment of the Seas
  • Rhapsody of the Seas
  • Vision of the Seas

In case you're wondering, it takes 175 points to reach Diamond Plus status. Generally speaking, you'll get one point per night of the cruise, and suite guests get two points per night. 

In an email to Crown and Anchor Society members, Royal Caribbean it has decided to rescind access due to overcrowding in the lounge.

"While we are excited for the growth of our program, we must remain mindful of our onboard operations to ensure that we continue to deliver the award-winning experience you know and love.

Concierge Club

In practice, this benefit had been mostly taken away anyway, since the line reserved the right to prohibit access to Diamond Plus members if there were too many members onboard.

Royal Caribbean explained this reality necessitated the change, "Access has been largely based on guest count and lounge capacity levels, which are assessed on a voyage-by-voyage basis."

"Due to high counts of top-tier members on most sailings, we have had to limit access to the Concierge Lounge altogether."

"This means that beginning on sailings departing on or after December 16th, 2022, both Concierge and Suite Lounge access on all ships will be limited to eligible Suite guests and Pinnacle Club members only."

Of course, Diamond Plus members still have access to the Diamond Lounge spaces.

Slow march to this point

Suite Lounge on Vision Class ship

While today's change on paper means less benefits than before, the reality was Concierge Lounge access had been on its way out for a long time up until today.

Whenever Royal Caribbean built a new ship or refurbished a vessel, they would add a Suite Lounge instead of a Concierge Lounge, which brought the number of ships with a Concierge Lounge down to less than half the fleet today.

Moreover, the ever increasing popularity of going on a cruise and the subsequent rise of loyal cruisers lead to more demand for this benefit than before.

 Suite Concierge

As stated by the cruise line in today's announcement, the benefit had already been rescinded on a sailing-by-sailing basis for many cruises.

It's been observed by other Crown and Anchor guests that Royal Caribbean had established hard counts for Diamond Plus and Pinnacle Club guests, and once a ship has Crown and Anchor members over that predefined threshold, that level is restricted from the Concierge Lounge.

Side of Quantum of the Seas

RoyalCaribbeanBlog reader twangster shared as a Pinnacle Club member, he's observed crew tracking how many people are in the lounges, "Multiple ships I've sailed recently asked all guests to badge in and out of the Concierge Lounge/Suite Lounge." 

"They were collecting data on how many guests, suites or otherwise, were actually using the facility and how long they stayed.  By gathering data they would have a basis to make additional policy updates. "

As an example, he shared a conversation he had with the Suite Concierge about the number of people onboard, "On Quantum in Alaska during the second Alaska cruise for this year, the suite concierge told me that Diamond Plus numbers were over the threshold all summer long."

"The first projected date that could allow them access to the Concierge Lounge was in September, but that is subject to change as the ship continues to book up."

Royal Caribbean will introduce new main dining room menu in January

12 Dec 2022
Matt Hochberg

It's official: Royal Caribbean will revamp its main dining room menu with a look and offerings beginning in January 2023.

After a few weeks of testing on Symphony of the Seas, Royal Caribbean has confirmed a new menu will replace the existing menu, beginning in January.

This is the first new dining room menu in over five years for the cruise line.

Royal Caribbean cautioned that the exact menu selections may change, so test menus that have been used so far may not be the final product.

New menu arrives in January

Royal Caribbean had been quietly testing a new menu on Symphony of the Seas, which was first spotted in November.

Over the last few weeks, the cruise line sought to capture guest feedback about the changes and make appropriate tweaks.

Speaking at the naming ceremony on Wonder of the Seas this weekend, Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley confirmed the new menu changes are going to proceed forward.

"We got all the written feedback. I think the food and beverage team has done an amazing job in making sure we're responsive to that. Our plan is to is to roll out the new menus starting in January," Mr. Bayley said when a travel agent asked for further information on the test.

Women eating in main dining room

Mr. Bayley also talked about hesitation related to a new menu.

"We're very thoughtful and conscious about any changes that we make. But we do think that where we're heading with the new menus is going to be better and more enjoyable."


In an exclusive interview, Linken D'Souza, Global Vice President Culinary, Dining & Beverage, talked in greater detail about the new menus.  He added that the current plan is to begin the new menu deployment in January, and by early February, it should be available on all ships across the fleet.

"We'll get that data back really probably by the end of December. We'll review that over the holidays. And then as we come back, post the New Year's week, we will start a deployment on the new menu across the fleet."

"It'll probably roll fairly quickly because we want it to be consistent across the fleet as quickly as we can."

Making dinner faster

Why the change? The top reason according to Royal Caribbean is swiftness of service.

In responding to a question about the new menu, Mr. Bayley said that a top complaint from passengers has been how long dinner can take some times.

"It's also fair to say that we get a lot of feedback from customers who do want to have a slightly faster service."

Symphony of the Seas main dining room

He was quick to add dinner is not planned to become as fast as possible either, "I would say there is no intention to rush somebody through that dinner."

"It's your choice and all you have to do is tell your waiter, 'I don't want to rush service. We want to enjoy our time.'" 

Adding to Mr. Bayley's point, Mr. D'Souza explained the issue with how long dinner can sometimes take, "today, our dining experience takes 120 plus minutes, in some cases for larger parties, at least 95 minutes for a party two. That's a really long dining experience."

So how long should dinner take? Royal Caribbean thinks the magic number is around 75 minutes.

"The first thing will help us do is improve the speed of the pace of the meal," Mr. D'Souza explained.

"Not hugely, but let's call it about 15 minutes is what we're seeing, which is a significant reduction, gets us much closer to that 75 minute target for what our guest experiences is really what what we have looked at in the research. And they said that's kind of what the guest ideal dining experience time."

"Hotter, fresher, more consistently plated, beautiful food"

Besides speed of service, Mr. D'Souza thinks this new menu will result in a better experience for guests.

"I think holistically, when you look at both the service experience we create with the theming of the nights and then the food that's layered in and then the consistency. And quality improvements that you're going to see hotter, fresher, more consistently plated, beautiful food."

He admitted up until now, that has not been the case and it bothered him, "my frustration with that is I want to deliver a more consistent and great quality experience for our guests versus a hit and miss experience."

Family in dining room

An updated menu also allows the dining experience to be more consistent, which is a major concern for Mr. D'Souza.

"You make a French onion soup that doesn't taste the same on every ship or look the same, and frankly, that's not acceptable to me."

"I would rather our guests have a very clear understanding and expectation of what they're going to get. And they either love it or hate it. That's okay. But if you love it, I want it to be the same amount of love for that dish. Whether you came today and you came 16 months back and you ate once in the Caribbean and next time in Europe, it should taste exactly the same."

Easing the load on crew members

Waiter serving a family

An ancillary benefit of the menu is the realities of the legacy menu and its impact on the workload for crew members.

"Frankly, the workload for the crew, it's not manageable anymore with the amount of special requests."

"We're putting some structure on the process to really be more diligent in how we how we operate the dining space."

Family eating in main dining room

He also acknowledged that there are a lot of new crew members, and the restart process since 2021 has been a challenge that didn't exist years ago.

"We have more what we call new roles in our business than we've ever had. And these are new employees who have the depth and length of experience. So we've got a lot of new employees who simply are still learning."

Final menu not set yet

While the plan is to have the dinner menus change across the fleet beginning in January, the exact menus are not set yet.

Mr. D'Souza talked about the timeline for finalizing the menu, "The menu that is currently on Symphony will go through some iteration from the themes themselves to the items that guests like."

"The theme nights you've seen are not necessarily theme nights that you're going to see when we launch. So there may be some modifications based on the feedback."

In fact, there will be additional themed nights for longer sailings.

According to Mr. D'Souza, they are also working on menus for 8, 9 and 10 night cruises.

Feedback so far from guests

Mom and daughter in main dining room

Royal Caribbean has received lots of reviews of the menu changes from its passengers, both loyal cruisers and first timers.

According to Mr. Bayley, consumer research teams were sent onboard Symphony of the Seas during the trial to talk focus groups of customers.

"We always do find that when you do these changes, you get, especially with our loyal customers who are very much used to their routine, we do get more feedback and sometimes negative feedback from our loyal customers because they like, they enjoy the way it was," Mr. Bayley explained when talking about the menu change.

Serenade of the Seas dining room

"But we also find that our new customers and new to cruise enjoy the new menu."

"We're working our way through it. We're very responsive to the feedback."

You might be curious what the feedback looks like, and Mr. D'Souza provided additional context.

Royal Caribbean has a team of six people onboard the ship that are doing in-person meetings with guests, along with the email surveys that have been sent out to many more. The team onboard has met with at least 30-40 guests every day of the cruise to get their opinions.

"Overwhelmingly, the feedback for all of the teams, has been exceptionally positive."

Guests not happy with the change? Try it first

Mr. D'Souza appears keenly aware of the initial negative comments he read online when the new menu was first spotted, but he hopes people will judge the menus onboard the ship and not just in the vacuum of the internet. 

"We understand that it's going to be some people who are not really thrilled about all the changes."

"What I would ask for is I would ask for the opportunity for people to really try the experience themselves and not prejudge it before they've been on the ship."

Main Dining Room onboard Symphony of the Seas

He added that when the new menus roll out in January, the offerings are not set in stone. Additional feedback will be reviewed to make further refinements.

"We don't stop taking feedback after we start the new menu."

"If there's four or five modifications we can make, we'll iterate and make those changes. If there's a theme that's not working and we're seeing a lot of dissatisfaction on a specific day within the cruise period, we'll review that experience."

Royal Caribbean Post Round-Up: December 11, 2022

11 Dec 2022
Matt Hochberg

Good news, we are all one week closer to our next Royal Caribbean cruise!  In case you missed any of the Royal Caribbean fun from this week, here is our weekly round up!

Icon of the Seas reached its next major construction milestone this week.

Icon of the Seas float out

The new ship was floated out of the dry dock and into its outfitting dock at the Meyer Werft shipyard.

Essentially, Icon has moved from a dry dock to a wet dock.

Royal Caribbean News

Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast

The 478th episode of the Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast is now available, featuring a look at Matt's cruise on Odyssey of the Seas.

Matt is back from an 8-night Odyssey of the Seas cruise to the Southern Caribbean and shares what he liked and didn't like about this 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: How 'Back To Normal' is 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 — How 'Back To Normal' is a Cruise? — and don’t forget to subscribe here.

7 TikTok cruise tips and if they actually work

I reviewed 7 cruise tips shared by people on TikTok.

Just like anything on the internet, just because it's on the internet, doesn't mean it's true.  So I wanted to check out the top cruise advice to see which tips were being shared and if I agreed with them or not.

I found 7 popular videos that cover various aspects of going on a cruise with tips and tricks that I thought were worth evaluating since they had fairly high view counts.

Royal Caribbean reveals new restaurants, bars, and activities on Icon of the Seas

Lemon Post Bar

More venues were revealed that we can expect to see on Icon of the Seas.

A variety of bars, restaurants, and activities were shared by Royal Caribbean that not only announced what they are, but also shared new concept art for each one.

5 real-life places that inspired Royal Caribbean cruise ship design

Did you know some of Royal Caribbean's best known activities and onboard features were ideas that came from places in the real world?

When new cruise ships are being designed, ideas come from different sources, including well-known locales.

Here are five things on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship that you could recognize as being similar or alluding to places you may have visited.

Allure of the Seas Guide & Review

10 Dec 2022
Jenna DeLaurentis

Royal Caribbean’s Oasis Class cruise ships are some of the most innovative and popular ships in the world, and Allure of the Seas is no exception.

Allure of the Seas aerial rear

Allure of the Seas is a destination within itself that offers more than enough to do, experience, and eat for guests of all ages. From adrenaline-filled activities like surfing and zip lining to enjoying world class, diverse cuisine, there’s no shortage of ways to keep busy onboard.

If you’re considering a cruise on Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas, be sure to read through this planning guide to ensure your cruise vacation is off to a great start. Let’s jump in!

Allure of the Seas overview

Allure of the Seas boardwalk view

Allure of the Seas is the second ship in Royal Caribbean’s Oasis Class, and her inaugural sailing was on December 1, 2010.

She is currently the fifth largest cruise ship in the world, with a length of 1,187 feet and gross tonnage of 225,282. Allure of the Seas has a capacity of 6,780 guests and 2,200 crew, bringing her total capacity to 8,930 passengers!

Allure of the Seas neighborhoods

Like all Oasis Class ships, Allure of the Seas is split into neighborhoods, each with their own activities and amenities. These neighborhoods help spread out crowds and provide unique experiences around the ship.

Central Park on Allure of the Seas

Here are the neighborhoods found on Allure of the Seas:

  1. The Boardwalk, an outdoor neighborhood with a carousel, arcade, candy and ice cream shop, hot dogs, Johnny Rockets, and Mexican restaurant
  2. Pool & Sports Zone, the top decks of Allure of the Seas with pools, hot tubs, and signature activities on the Sports Court
  3. Central Park, a quieter, outdoor oasis with plants, trees, and flowers. Central Park is also home to three specialty restaurants, retail stores, and bars
  4. The Royal Promenade, the main indoor thoroughfare on Allure of the Seas with bars, lounges, shopping, and dining venues
  5. Entertainment Place, the hub of entertainment venues with an ice skating rink, theater, casino, comedy club, jazz club, and nightclub
  6. Youth Zone, home to Royal Caribbean’s Adventure Ocean kids programming
  7. Vitality Spa & Fitness, a spa, salon, and fitness center

The distinct neighborhoods on Allure of the Seas mean there is something for everyone onboard, whether you're looking to relax at Central Park or get your adrenaline pumping on the Sports Court.

What makes Allure of the Seas different from other Oasis Class ships?

Aft of Allure of the Seas

Allure of the Seas is the only “original” Oasis Class cruise ship left, meaning she has not received her amplification and therefore does not have several features and activities found on other ships in the class.

Other Oasis Class cruise ships have features like water slides, the Ultimate Abyss dry slide, Royal Caribbean’s newest restaurants, and escape rooms.

While Allure of the Seas may not have these activities and amenities, she offers plenty of unique opportunities not found on other Oasis Class ships, including a Brazilian steakhouse, champagne bar, Sabor Mexican restaurant, and more.

Related: The Oasis Class features that are only left on Allure of the Seas

Allure of the Seas dining & beverage

Sorrento's Pizza on Allure of the Seas

Like all Oasis Class cruise ships, there is no shortage of places to eat on Allure of the Seas. Everything from hot dogs to hibachi and tacos are available, and you’re sure to find something to please everyone in your travel party.

Complimentary restaurants are available onboard, but there are also several options for specialty restaurants. Specialty restaurants come at an extra charge, but they offer cuisines and cooking styles not found elsewhere on the ship, and can offer a more upscale dining experience than the complimentary venues.

Giovanni's on Allure of the Seas

Allure of the Seas complimentary dining options:

  • Main Dining Room
  • Windjammer Cafe
  • Solarium Bistro
  • Park Cafe
  • Cafe Promenade
  • Sorrento’s Pizza
  • Boardwalk Dog House
  • Wipeout Cafe
  • Vitality Cafe
  • Coastal Kitchen (suites only)
  • Room service (continental breakfast only)
  • Johnny Rockets (breakfast only)

Allure of the Seas specialty dining options:

  • Chops Grille
  • Giovanni’s Table
  • Izumi Hibachi & SUshi
  • 150 Central Park
  • Sabor
  • Samba Grill
  • Vintages Wine Bar
  • Cups & Scoops (cupcakes and ice cream)
  • Starbucks
  • Johnny Rockets (lunch and dinner)
  • Chef’s Table
Allure of the Seas dessert

You may want to consider purchasing a dining package if you plan to eat at specialty restaurants on Allure of the Seas.

Related: How to know if you should buy a Royal Caribbean dining package

Allure of the Seas has two restaurants found on just a few Royal Caribbean cruise ships: Samba Grill and Sabor. Because these restaurants are only found on one or two other cruise ships, they can offer a unique dining experience for those who cruise frequently with Royal Caribbean.

Related: I tried Royal Caribbean’s least well-known specialty restaurant: here’s what I thought

Allure of the Seas Bars & Lounges

Champagne Bar on Allure

Just like dining venues, there’s no shortage of places to find a refreshing drink on Allure of the Seas. Whether you’re in the mood for a soda, cocktail, smoothie, or glass of wine, you’ll find plenty of places to get a drink onboard.

One unique feature on Allure of the Seas is the Champagne Bar, which offers a selection of martinis. One of the most popular is the Cucumber Martini, made with cucumber, basil, Monin lemongrass syrup, Sweet and Sour, and Grey Goose vodka.

Martini on Allure

Another classic bar on Allure of the Seas and other Oasis Class ships is the Rising Tide Bar. This bar travels up and down 3 stories from the Royal Promenade to Central Park, making for a unique drinking experience.

Other bars on Allure of the Seas include:

  • Pool & Solarium bars
  • Wipeout Bar
  • Trellis Bar
  • Vintages Wine Bar
  • Dazzles Lounge
  • Schooner Bar
  • On Air Club
  • Bow & Stern English Pub
  • Sabor Bar

If you plan to enjoy several drinks every day of the cruise, it may be worth purchasing a beverage package. Royal Caribbean’s drink packages are unlimited, so you can enjoy as many drinks as you’d like without worrying about the cost per beverage.

Related: Royal Caribbean Drink Package Info, Tips, Pros & Cons

Shows & Entertainment

Aquatheater show on Allure of the Seas

All Royal Caribbean cruise ships are known for offering top-notch, complimentary entertainment, but Oasis Class ships take entertainment to the next level. With diving performances, ice-skating, a Broadway show, and endless live music choices, there’s plenty of ways to keep busy on Allure of the Seas.

In the AquaTheater guests can enjoy Oceanaria, an undersea-themed production combining aerialists, acrobats, and high divers. From acrobats standing on each other’s heads to jumping off a diving platform 30 feet in the air, the show is sure to impress all guests.

Mama Mia

One of the best entertainment features on Allure of the Seas is the full-length Broadway musical, Mamma Mia. This 2.5 hour production is included in your cruise fare and is a highlight of the cruise for many passengers.

Ice show

There’s also Ice Games, the signature ice-skating show in Studio B, which features a talented international ice cast who spin, dance, jump, and flip on the ice. The show is inspired by Monopoly and is a “game” in which cast members roll a dice, taking them to different areas onboard Allure of the Seas.

Outside of signature production shows, you’ll find live music and other events happening throughout the cruise, including:

  • Guitar music at the English pub
  • Piano music at Schooner Bar
  • Jazz band at Jazz of 4
  • Live music in Central Park
  • Game shows
  • Trivia
  • Karaoke

To find out more about what is happening onboard each day of the cruise, be sure to download the Royal Caribbean app and check the daily schedule. Making reservations to signature production shows is important, too, and it’s recommended that you do so as soon as you get onboard on embarkation day.

Related: 30 Do’s and Don’ts for the first day of your cruise

Pool deck

Pool deck

With a capacity of nearly 7,000 guests, it’s important to have plenty of pool space on Allure of the Seas, and you’ll find several areas to keep cool on warm Caribbean days.

The pool deck on Allure of the Seas has three main pools, one pool area for kids, and several jacuzzis.

Couple at the pool

Parents with young children will enjoy the H20 Zone, a splash park featuring water geysers, a small whirlpool, and hot tubs.

H20 Zone on Allure

The main pool areas are open every day of the cruise, although they may occasionally be used for activities like the belly flop competition, pool volleyball, fitness classes, swimming laps, etc.

Related: Everything you wanted to know about Royal Caribbean’s pools

Also on the pool deck are four bars, a suites-only sun deck, and an area for live bands to play reggae, rock, and contemporary hits throughout the day.


Solarium on Allure of the Seas

In addition to the main pool deck is an adults-only Solarium for guests aged 16 and above. Inside the Solarium is one pool and four hot tubs, two of which cantilever over the side of Allure of the Seas. Padded lounge chairs and other comfortable seating are also available.

Related: Everything about Royal Caribbean’s Solarium

The Solarium is also home to the Solarium Bistro, a complimentary dining venue open for breakfast and lunch, and Samba Grill Brazilian steakhouse in the evenings.

Signature activities on Allure of the Seas

Allure of the Seas rock climbing wall

Oasis Class ships offer fun for all ages, and there are a variety of signature activities included in your cruise fare, including:

  • The FlowRider, a surfing simulator for boogie boarding and standup surfing
  • The zip line, soaring guests over the ship’s Boardwalk neighborhood
  • Allure Dunes mini golf
  • Sports Court for activities like soccer, basketball, pickleball, etc.
  • Ping pong tables
  • Ice skating in Studio B
  • Carousel

There are also two arcades located on Allure of the Seas, but these come at an extra cost.

In addition, you’ll find a variety of activities throughout the day such as scavenger hunts, pool games, Boardwalk carnival, Royal Promenade parades, and more.

Adventure Ocean

Adventure Ocean

Allure of the Seas offers Adventure Ocean programming for kids aged 6 months to 17 years. Kids are split into the following age groups:

  • Royal Babies & Tots (6-36 months)
  • Aquanauts (3-5)
  • Explorers (6-8)
  • Voyagers (9-11)
  • Teen club (12-17)

Adventure Ocean programming is complimentary with the exception of Royal Babies & Tots, which has an hourly fee, and childcare after 10 PM.

Science Lab

Each age group has their own room for activities, and there is also an Imagination Studio for arts and crafts and a science lab for educational experiments. In addition, child-friendly movies are shown throughout the cruise at the Adventure Ocean Theater.

Teens have access to their own private lounge, The Living Room, and the Fuel Teen nightclub. There is also a private outdoor deck space for teenagers to enjoy.

Allure of the Seas staterooms

Balcony room

Allure of the Seas offers both traditional cruise ship cabins and a few alternatives only available on Oasis Class cruise ships. Each category offers a different layout, size, and experience, and there’s a stateroom to fit any budget.

Before picking a stateroom category for your cruise on Allure of the Seas, it’s important to consider your budget, what you’re looking for in a cruise experience, and which cabin will fit your family best.

Take a look at a few of our tips & tricks on picking the best stateroom for your cruise:

Allure of the Seas suite

On Allure of the Seas you’ll find interior staterooms, oceanview rooms, balcony cabins, and suites.

Interior cabins are the most budget-friendly option, meaning you can save money on the cruise fare and put it toward excursions, drink packages, dining packages, spa treatments, and other pre-cruise add-ons.

Related: I tried the best inside cruise ship cabin hacks to see how well they worked

Oceanview cabin

Oceanview cabins have a porthole looking out toward the ocean, and they can be another budget-friendly option while having the benefit of a window view.

Balcony cabins are the most common choice for cruisers, and Allure of the Seas has three types of balcony cabins:

  • Ocean View Balcony cabins
  • Central Park Balcony cabins
  • Boardwalk Balcony cabins
Boardwalk view cabin

Central Park and Boardwalk Balcony cabins are unique to Oasis Class cruise ships. Unlike an ocean view balcony, they don’t offer a full ocean view, but they look out into their respective neighborhoods.

Central Park balconies allow guests to enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of the ship’s park and listen to live music in the evenings. Boardwalk balconies, on the other hand, offer a more lively atmosphere and come with a partial ocean view.

Related: Are Boardwalk balcony cabins too loud?

Junior Suite on Allure of the Seas

A variety of suites are also available on Allure of the Seas, from a basic Junior Suite to lavish AquaTheater and Loft Suites.

Allure of the Seas offers the Royal Suite Class, an upgraded suite experience featuring a suites-only restaurant, Coastal Kitchen, suite sun deck with daybeds, suite lounge, and access to a Royal Genie (in select cabins).

Related: Royal Caribbean suites guide & review

Allure of the Seas itineraries

Allure of the Seas

Allure of the Seas sails from Galveston, Texas from November 2022 to October 2023. While in Texas, she will offer primarily 7-night Western Caribbean cruises visiting Roatan, Costa Maya, and Cozumel.

Starting October 2023, Allure of the Seas will move to Fort Lauderdale to offer 3 and 4-night cruises to Nassau and Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Oasis Class cruise ships rarely sail itineraries shorter than 6 or 7 nights, so having regularly scheduled short cruises on Allure of the Seas makes for an excellent getaway on one of Royal Caribbean’s most impressive cruise ships.

What’s “missing” on Allure of the Seas?

Sports deck

Most comparisons of Allure of the Seas to other ships in the Oasis Class revolve around the fact that the ship is “missing” several activities, bars, and dining venues found on other ships. These include:

  • The Ultimate Abyss, Royal Caribbean’s dry slide which plummets guests 100 feet from the Sports Court down to the Boardwalk neighborhood
  • Waterslides
  • Bionic Bar, the futuristic bar serving cocktails made by robotic bartenders
  • Escape Room
  • Laser Tag
  • Wonderland, an eclectic specialty restaurant
  • Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade

Personally, having these features missing does not make Allure of the Seas any less desirable to me. I rarely use the onboard waterslides or Ultimate Abyss, and while an escape room is fun, I can keep busy with other activities onboard. Plus, you can still find a zip line, sports court, 2 FlowRiders, Adventure Ocean programming, a carousel, and other kid-friendly activities on the ship.

That being said, not having waterslides could be considered a downside of Allure of the Seas for some passengers. Whereas other Oasis Class ships have three waterslides in addition to small slides at Splashaway Bay, Allure of the Seas does not have even one.

While there is more than enough to keep kids entertained on Allure, if your kids can’t wait to check out the waterslides onboard a cruise ship, it’s probably best to pick another ship in the Oasis Class or spend the day at Thrill Waterpark if your Allure cruise visits Perfect Day at CocoCay.

As far as dining and lounge venues are concerned, I did not have any complaints with what was available on Allure of the Seas. Being an Oasis Class ship, Allure of the Seas has a ton of places to eat and drink onboard even if she hasn’t been amplified.

Related: The Oasis Class features that are only left on Allure of the Seas

Brazilian steakhouse

As someone who cruises frequently, it was refreshing to see a range of dining options on Allure of the Seas not found as commonly on other Royal Caribbean ships. I preferred my meals at Samba Grill and Sabor on Allure of the Seas much more than my dining experience at Wonderland (which can be found on other Oasis Class ships).

Related: I tried Royal Caribbean's least well-known specialty restaurant: here's what I thought

So perhaps we shouldn’t look at Allure of the Seas in the context of what’s missing, but what makes the ship unique.

What I loved about Allure of the Seas

Diamond Lounge location

Allure of the Seas diamond lounge

One of the best perks of being a Diamond member in Royal Caribbean’s Crown & Anchor Society is access to the Diamond Lounge.

Related: Crown and Anchor Society loyalty program info, tips & secrets

On every other Oasis Class ship, the Diamond Lounge is tucked into a room on Deck 4 with no windows. It’s not somewhere I enjoy spending time, as I’d rather be hanging out somewhere with an outside view.

On Allure of the Seas, however, this space has massive windows overlooking the Boardwalk neighborhood and ocean. 

Sabor Mexican restaurant

Food at Sabor

Something else I loved on Allure of the Seas was Sabor, Royal Caribbean’s Mexican specialty restaurant.

I didn’t have the highest expectations when I made a reservation at Sabor. Not only do I live in an area of the US with wonderful, authentic Mexican food, but I was on a cruise visiting Mexico. Surely the food at Sabor couldn’t compete with the food I enjoyed in port, right?

Sabor Food

In reality, Sabor exceeded my expectations and I was kicking myself for waiting until the last day of the cruise to dine there.

We savored a meal of guacamole (customized to your spice preference!), pico de gallo, quesadillas, fish and chicken tacos, and queso fundido.


Despite feeling completely stuffed after way too much guacamole, I made room for a mouthwatering dessert of cinnamon churros, banana and chocolate chimichanga, flan, and cafe con leche.

Endless guacamole, tacos, and churros? Yes, please!

Entertainment options

The ship’s AquaTheater show, OceanAria, may have been the best AquaTheater show I’ve seen yet. It had a huge focus on acrobatics, including an insanely impressive acro yoga performance. I wish I had seen the show more than once! While all AquaTheater shows on Oasis Class ships are entertaining, I enjoyed OceanAria the most.

Additionally, the ship’s Studio B show, Ice Games, was one of my favorite ice skating shows to date. I have a hard time understanding the plot of most ice skating shows, but Ice Games was easy to follow. The show revolved around a Monopoly game in which the cast members (or guests!) rolled a die that would transport the set to an area of Allure of the Seas.

The ice skating rink changed from Giovanni’s Table to the Boardwalk and Arcade, and the whole show was beyond fun to watch!

Central Park

Central Park

Something I love about sailing on the “older” ships in the Oasis Class (Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas) is that the plants and trees in Central Park have had over ten years to grow. The park is full of tall, lush trees and massive plant walls that are much more impressive than on the newer Oasis Class ships.

As someone who loves spending time in Central Park, I liked how the space felt more integrated with nature on Allure of the Seas compared to the newer ships.

Related: Top 10 Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas insider tips & secrets

Cheaper pricing

Perhaps the best benefit of cruising on Allure of the Seas is that prices are often the lowest of any Oasis Class ship. Because she has not been amplified and thus lacks activities like waterslides and new dining venues, Royal Caribbean prices her itineraries at a reasonable cost.

My 6-night cruise, for example, was $1152 for two guests in a Boardwalk balcony cabin including gratuities. At $192 per night ($96 per person, per night), I felt it was a great deal for sailing on one of Royal Caribbean’s biggest cruise ships.

Considering a cruise on Allure of the Seas? Check out more of our advice for planning the best cruise vacation:

Answers to Wonder of the Seas questions our readers wanted to know

10 Dec 2022
Matt Hochberg

Before you sail on Royal Caribbean's Wonder of the Seas, you might be have the same questions as our readers do about this cruise ship.

Wonder of the Seas aerial rear night

Wonder of the Seas entered service in March 2022, and recently returned to Port Canaveral to begin offering year-round cruises from her homeport. Her return to Florida has a lot of cruisers excited to try out the world's largest ship for the first time.

Royal Caribbean invited me to sail on Wonder of the Seas for a quick two-night sailing to commemorate the ship's official christening ceremony, and I wanted to answer as many questions as I could from our readers.

Women at the pool in a casita

I asked readers on the Royal Caribbean Blog Facebook page what questions they have about Wonder of the Seas so that I could try to answer them all.

Here's all the Wonder of the Seas questions they have and answers to them all!

Can you book shows before the cruise begins?

inTENse show

It depends when your sailing occurs.

Up until recently, the ability to book shows was not an option pre-cruise.  However, Royal Caribbean seems to have changed that policy for sailings beginning in December.

Entertainment is available to reserve for Quantum and Oasis class ships 30 days before the sailing via the Royal Caribbean website.

What are your top 3 must-do’s and what to skip on Wonder of the Seas?

Wonder of the Seas docked at CocoCay

I spent a lot of my first day on Wonder of the Seas thinking of a good answer to this question.  

My three must-dos are:

Mason Jar

1. Eat brunch and see a show in Mason Jar

I didn't know I needed Southern American food in my life until I ate at Mason Jar.

Chicken 'n waffles, red velvet pancakes, stuffed French toast and plenty more "don't tell mom what I just ate" dishes make a meal here worth the price of admission.

Equally fun is the Country Trio band that performs here. You don't have to be a mega Country music fan to enjoy the live entertainment.

Effectors 2

2. Effectors 2

Truthfully, all the shows on an Oasis Class ship are worth seeing, but Wonder of the Seas has a brand new show that is a follow-up to the original Effectors show that I first saw on Odyssey of the Seas.

Royal Caribbean's original productions have continuously outperformed the previous show with each new ship, so do yourself a favor and see the shows.

Vue Bar on Wonder of the Seas

3. Get a drink at the Vue Bar

I love what Royal Caribbean has done with the pool deck on Wonder of the Seas, especially the addition of the Vue Bar.

The Vue extends over the side of the ship to offer fantastic ocean views. 

The panoramic views are worth the visit.

Why is there no Broadway show on Wonder of the Seas?

I think there's two reasons why there's no Broadway show on Wonder of the Seas.

Royal Caribbean will tell you it's because they're ability to produce in-house shows is at a level that rivals shows you'd find in Las Vegas or New York, and it allows them to craft a production that matches up well for cruise ship audiences.

To their credit, there's truth in what they're saying. Whether it's Voices, Effectors, or a host of other recent shows you may have seen on ships, Royal Caribbean Productions have evolved quite a bit from just musical medleys that we saw years ago.

Grease Broadway musical on Royal Caribbean cruise ship

Royal Caribbean won't say, however, cost is probably another reason.

Any Broadway show you want to have on a cruise ship costs money, and you have to remember Wonder was being built and launched during the pandemic and following more than two years of billion dollar loses. 

I could be totally wrong, but it's my opinion that developing an in-house show would cost them less than purchasing the rights to a Broadway show.

So given how far the cruise line has come with its own stuff and the financial situation they're in, it makes sense.

Are they offering the all access tour?

Yes, the All Access Ship Tour is available once again to book.

I took the behind the scenes tour on Mariner of the Seas, and it's an intriguing add-on for anyone that's wanted to see a cruise ship's bridge, controls, galley or more.

With that many people on board, does it feel incredibly overwhelming?

AquaTheater on Wonder of the Seas

This is my third time on Wonder of the Seas, and Wonder of the Seas feels incredibly manageable.

The Oasis Class ships are designed to distribute guests easily throughout the ship and it really does work once you get onboard the ship.

After the hustle and bustle of the first day, things settle down considerably and it's easy to forget the capacity of the ship because of how many things there are to do, which draws people in many directions.

How is the location/setup of Windjammer compared to other Oasis class ships?

Windjammer entrance on Wonder of the Seas

Royal Caribbean built its largest Windjammer ever on Wonder of the Seas and it's a welcome change.

On other Oasis Class ships, the Windjammer wasn't as large because there were so many other venues available to draw passengers away. 

However, on Wonder, Royal Caribbean recognized its guests like having the Windjammer as a primary option and greatly expanded its footprint as a result.

Like other Oasis Class ships, the Windjammer is on a high deck. But the layout means much more seating and lots of cooking stations.

How is the embarkation in Port Canaveral?

Embarkation is super easy in Port Canaveral.

Just like Royal Caribbean's other new generation of cruise terminals, the process of embarkation and disembarkation is so much easier than how it is has traditionally worked.

The key to making embarkation very easy is to complete all the pre-cruise check-in information in the Royal Caribbean app prior to the first day.

If you enter all the information in the app before the cruise begins, you will never stop walking through the terminal.

Is there still a non smoking room “Golden Room” up and running in the casino?

Yes, there are many slot machines to choose from, along with a couple of table games.

The other interesting aspect of the Golden Room is that it's non-smoking.

What food is included on Wonder of the Seas and what is not included?

Couple dining at Giovannis

Here's a list of the restaurants included with your cruise fare on Wonder of the Seas:

  • Main dining room
  • Sorrento's
  • Windjammer Marketplace
  • Cafe Promenade
  • Boardwalk Doghouse
  • Park Cafe
  • El Loco Fresh and Cantina Fresca
Mason Jar chicken sandwich

And here's the restaurants that cost extra:

  • Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar (extra cost)
  • Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade (extra cost)
  • Hooked Seafood (extra cost)
  • The Lime & Coconut (extra cost)
  • Izumi (extra cost)
  • Wonderland (extra cost)
  • 150 Central Park (extra cost)
  • Johnny Rockets (extra cost)
  • Starbucks (extra cost)
  • Sugar Beach (extra cost)
  • Chops Grille (extra cost)

I would love to see information about the unique things on Wonder compared to her sister ships

Perfect Storm waterslides on Wonder of the Seas

Wonder of the Seas is the fifth Oasis Class cruise ship in Royal Caribbean’s fleet, but she has several key differences.

While she shares many of the same restaurants, bars, and entertainment venues as other Oasis Class ships, significant enhancements were made to her design and layout.

You can view all the differences between Wonder and the other Oasis Class ships.

I would love a picture of the Central Park balconies directly above the Trellis Bar


Royal Caribbean CEO: Chat feature in app will be free starting in 2023

09 Dec 2022
Matt Hochberg

It looks like Royal Caribbean is about to drop a fee it had been charging guests.

Royal Caribbean's app has a chat feature that currently costs $1.99 per guest, per day to use it.

While at a question and answer session aboard Wonder of the Seas on Thursday, Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley told travel agents in attendance the line will remove the cost to use the chat feature.

According to travel agents in attendance, Mr. Bayley said the change will go into effect beginning January 1, 2023.

Following up on a promise

Royal Caribbean app

This isn't the first time Mr. Bayley talked about removing the fee for the chat feature.

At a similar event held on Odyssey of the Seas in 2021, Mr. Bayley said the cruise line would change the chat feature to free.

 "I remember that we had a lot of arguments internally within the company about a dollar ninety nine."

Michael Bayley speaking at President's Cruise

"I'm tempted to say we'll drop it, but nobody seems to be reacting against it. So we'll we'll drop it. Yeah. I think that will be good."

It now appears that promise is coming to fruition. 

Why a free chat feature makes a difference

By making the chat feature free, this opens up the function to many more passengers.

Since most guests do not purchase an internet package, that limits communication options for passengers while onboard a ship.

Moreover, having a free chat feature allows kids to use the chat feature without their parents having to spend anything extra.

How Royal Caribbean's chat feature works

The chat in Royal Caribbean's app works very similar to other texting apps you may have used in other apps.

Royal Caribbean's chat offers one-to-one guest chat, along with group chats.

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.

Kids together on Wonder of the Seas

If your travel agent linked your reservation before sailing with a friend or family the will automatically show up in your list of contacts. You also have the option of adding other guests.

Royal Caribbean's app is available on the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.