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Hello! Karen and I are RCI Emerald. We retired last year and are pondering cruising The Brilliance of the Sea from Tampa to Amsterdam May 2020. We have a gahzillion questions. We've been on plenty of 3, 4, 5 and 7 day cruises and have mixed experience getting an upgrade. We are two cruises away from Diamond and so my question is - would that make a difference? When I was gainfully employed we'd spring for a balcony, but now we have to cut back where we can and are thinking about taking our chances on the cheapest room RCI offers and hope for an upgrade. Aside from that  - with SO many sea days how do you avoid "groundhog day" ? Thanks in advance - Richard & Karen 

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If you are thinking about a complimentary upgrade, I can predict with 99.9% certainty that won't happen.  

Your cruise will have several hundred Crown and Anchor members with higher status.  Most of those members don't stand a chance either.  

Plan to sail in your cabin purchased.  

As far as the ground hog day effect, sea day after sea day will eventually become repetitive.  Bring something like a few books to break it up or something that suits you.

Here is a cruise compass posted by a previous cruiser for a Brilliance transatlantic:

https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/cruise-compasses/brilliance-of-the-seas/sat-2018-09-01-0000

It won't be identical obviously but will provide some insight with respect to the type of daytime activities offered on those many sea days in a row.

 

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With the Royal Up program, upgrades are at your choice/expense.  Cruises generally sail at 100% occupancy, so free upgrades are a thing of the past.  Actually, that's not bad news.  I've been in a single interior room (Harmony) and it wasn't the least bit cramped.  Not being able to see the ocean isn't a huge deal - the inside balconies (Promenade and Central Park) kind of made me think of Manhattan apartments all facing each other (With an exhibitionist or two). 

Other than in port or during an air evacuation I can count on one hand the times I've spent any serious time on the balcony, though some people eat breakfast there every day.

There's enough going on to stay busy out of the cabin.  And if your're in it, you can develop film it's so dark when you turn out the lights.  

I'd go with the inside cabin.

 

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Just now, twangster said:

If you are thinking about a complimentary upgrade, I can predict with 99.9% certainty that won't happen.  

Your cruise will have several hundred Crown and Anchor members with higher status.  Most of those members don't stand a chance either.  

Plan to sail in your cabin purchased.  

As far as the ground hog day effect, sea day after sea day will eventually become repetitive.  Bring something like a few books to break it up or something that suits you.

Here is a cruise compass posted by a previous cruiser for a Brilliance transatlantic:

https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/cruise-compasses/brilliance-of-the-seas/sat-2018-09-01-0000

It won't be identical obviously but will provide some insight with respect to the type of daytime activities offered on those many sea days in a row.

 

We have to stop meeting like this. :1_grinning:

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We did this cruise last year on the Brilliance and LOVED it!!!  We enjoy the balcony every morning for breakfast... but I would rather stay in an inside cabin than miss this sailing.  Of course I would pay a little more for oceanview just to get the sunlight.

There are plenty of activities, I enjoyed the movie theater.  It's an awesome ship.

Diamond status would be wonderful to have prior to sailing this long one.  For the Diamond lounge.  Tons of diamond members on our cruise and they moved it to larger lounge.  Staff made it tremendously fun by having theme nights.  So fun to get to enjoy meeting other frequent cruisers. 

Sorry I don't have more info... but I would do it again. 🙂

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We've done two repositioning cruises, the longest being 12 nights.  We had 5 ports and seven days (and a half, embarkation day) and never once was bored.  We thought we may after the 3rd or 4th sea day in a row, but there was so much going on around the ship we always found something to do.  We were on Serenade, same class.  There was tons of movies to watch if you like that sort of thing - this class has a dedicated cinema - there was tons of trivia, pool events, Centrum events & parties.  Two things that stood out to us that we hadn't experienced before was the egg drop challenge (we had 20 minutes to make a parachute type thing and drop an egg in it from deck 8 to deck 4 without breaking it) and the boat races (on day 2 there was a meeting and on day 11 we raced the boats in the main pool).  So much fun.  

As mentioned above, there will be a LOT of Diamond and above members.  We were Emerald on the repo I mentioned and during the Diamond happy hour that bars were packed with everyone claiming their freebies.  I heard from quite a few people how packed the Diamond lounge was and how it was just crazy.  I was very happy to be Emerald on that one. 

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