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Hello All,

just wanted an option , I am currently a diamond member about 55 points away from diamond plus. Question is the change in status worth the climb?

 

Michael

 

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18 minutes ago, MDFirst said:

Hello All,

just wanted an option , I am currently a diamond member about 55 points away from diamond plus. Question is the change in status worth the climb?

 

Michael

 

Only you can answer that.

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32 minutes ago, MDFirst said:

Hello All,

just wanted an option , I am currently a diamond member about 55 points away from diamond plus. Question is the change in status worth the climb?

 

Michael

 

I just went from Diamond to Diamond+ and I think it is worth it.

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@MDFirst  I am climbing the same hill as you.  Besides what is documented in @cdixon22's link, apparently there are some unpublished perks.  What I have learned is this: 1) They can change at anytime and from ship to ship.  2) They will be listed for you on paper when you board.  3) There is no mention of them in the published C&A comparison table.  Maybe @Matt can provide more info about this...

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On board C&A benefits can change for any level but have been pretty stable over the past couple of years.

Some D+ perks I like:

  • 30% off drink packages on board.  Typically the very best cruise planner sale might reach 30%, maybe.  I don't have to worry about it now.  If I feel like it I buy it on board, if I don't then I don't.  Plus I can buy it on day 2 or 3 and reduce the cost further.
  • BOGO specialty dining.  Buy a specialty dinner, get one free.  Must be used night one and two.
  • Two free days of Voom Surf or $45 off any package.  For a travelling couple each gets two free days so that's four days between you.  For many that's enough to save buying Voom.  For shorter cruises like a 3 or 4 night it's nearly free internet for the whole cruise.
  • Some ships like Oasis class have a My Time kiosk for D+ and P.  Skip any lines go straight to the D+ kiosk.
  • Some ships offer priority seating in theaters or studio B.
  • Behind the scenes tours including bridge or galley and sometimes both.  Not the same as Full Access Tours sold in cruise compass but all the important stuff.  
  • Some terminals allow D+ into higher priority queues for check in, some group D and D+, but generally speaking some sort of terminal boarding priority one notch higher.
  • Concierge Lounge access while there are still some left in the fleet.  Radiance and Quantum class offer the biggest bang here. Sometimes Vision class as well.

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If you are going to continue to sail with Royal Caribbean, then there is nothing but up sides to climbing the ladder.  Status for the sake of status makes no sense but status to enjoy the benefits of status, does.

When they started converting the Concierge lounges to Suites Lounge and kicked the D+ down to the DL they ALMOST lost me but I played their silly game and began cruising nearly exclusively in suites. I guess I showed them !  🤔🤔 

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10 hours ago, WAAAYTOOO said:

If you are going to continue to sail with Royal Caribbean, then there is nothing but up sides to climbing the ladder.  Status for the sake of status makes no sense but status to enjoy the benefits of status, does.

When they started converting the Concierge lounges to Suites Lounge and kicked the D+ down to the DL they ALMOST lost me but I played their silly game and began cruising nearly exclusively in suites. I guess I showed them !  🤔🤔 

That's the the path that I am going to take so I'm right there with you. And, BTW, I have 5 points at the moment 😏 

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@twangster  Excellent - Thank You for your very detailed list.  Is there a way for me to somehow create a RCB bookmark so that I can reference this page whenever I want?  I'll never remember all this...

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1 hour ago, YOLO said:

@twangster  Excellent - Thank You for your very detailed list.  Is there a way for me to somehow create a RCB bookmark so that I can reference this page whenever I want?  I'll never remember all this...

Nothing specific to RCBlog but you can bookmark any page using your browser. Depending on your browser you could create an RCBlog Folder and save all such favorites posts to that bookmark folder.  

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16 hours ago, MDFirst said:

Hello All,

just wanted an option , I am currently a diamond member about 55 points away from diamond plus. Question is the change in status worth the climb?

 

Michael

 

I look at the benefits as just that - a benefit but not a goal.  I cruise because I enjoy cruising.  I wouldn't pay extra $$ to go to Diamond plus faster-- I don't see the incremental benefits nearly as great as achieving Diamond status, and the increased on-ship discounts are designed to increase my spending. 

https://www.royalcaribbean.com/cas/benefits/diamond-plus-members/

Being middle class, I don't expect luxury, so the service I receive at any ranking from Royal Caribbean staff seems awesome.  Whatever you decide with your future vacations, have a great time!

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1 hour ago, twangster said:

Nothing specific to RCBlog but you can bookmark any page using your browser. Depending on your browser you could create an RCBlog Folder and save all such favorites posts to that bookmark folder.  

A browser shortcut is what I expected, but I wanted to make sure I didn't miss some sort of functionality on this site.  I usually use Chrome, so yes I can put all of my RBC shortcuts into a "RCB" folder.

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I don't think anyone should go on cruises purely to attain higher C&A status. The perks are lovely, but not the reason to go on a cruise. Higher status should be a tertiary benefit to the overall amazing cruise experience you come to relish and enjoy.

I recall a great argument by @monorailmedic on his podcast about why elevated loyalty status is great, but not the primary reason to cruise.

16 hours ago, MDFirst said:

Question is the change in status worth the climb?

Is it nice to be Diamond/Diamond Plus at some point? Absolutely. There are some great benefits. 

But do not book cruises purely to move up.

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There are a few points that I can't shake when thinking about cruise line loyalty programs (for RCI and others):

  • I've yet to find any reasonably attainable perk that is worth compromising new experiences for. 
  • Companies have loyalty programs because they can offer things of less than consequential value to keep customers.  If the benefits held that much value, it wouldn't make any financial sense for a line to offer them.  Digging in deeper for a loyalty program is, in a funny way, showing to cruise lines that they work - they can offer something of little value and get you to shell out more money.
  • Loyalty program perks/rewards are benefits one gets FOR cruising with a given line, and shouldn't be seen as THE reason to cruise with a certain line.  The reason TO cruise with a given line is because you like their product!  If I have a local ice cream place that gives me a free scoop after buying ten, it'd be odd to keep going there for the "free" (definitely not free - you paid to get that perk), it makes sense to go there if you like their ice cream.  That's why you went the first and second time, right?

Now, all that in mind, I recognize that there are certain circumstances in which "strategic escalation" might make sense, but they're very slim cases.  An example might be if after your next cruise you'll be just a point or two away from Diamond, and you know that the cruise after that you'll be sailing solo.  Since you'll get a much more favorable solo rate on that next sailing if you move up, you might do the math and find (depending on the rates), that a suite upgrade on your sailing has somewhere around a net-zero cost (or you might not - many variable exist here).  Again though, those are fringe cases.

Remember why you cruise a given line (or lines) in the first place - the things you like about that experience are the reasons to cruise.  The loyalty perks are just that, perks - not the part of the offering anyone is trying to sell.

A final thought (from me at least) on this: While I don't aim for loyalty levels, I'll of course welcome the benefits as they come.  This is much easier to do with Royal Caribbean's Crown & Anchor Society, as they do have much more to offer than some other companies.  Ric and I went over perks of various lines on the below/linked podcast, and I think most here will see that they don't have it too bad at all.  

https://www.cruisehabit.com/podcast/loyalty-programs-do-past-passenger-programs-keep-you-coming-back-more-episode-5

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22 hours ago, WAAAYTOOO said:

If you are going to continue to sail with Royal Caribbean, then there is nothing but up sides to climbing the ladder.  Status for the sake of status makes no sense but status to enjoy the benefits of status, does.

When they started converting the Concierge lounges to Suites Lounge and kicked the D+ down to the DL they ALMOST lost me but I played their silly game and began cruising nearly exclusively in suites. I guess I showed them !  🤔🤔 

Yea I fixed them too.:22_stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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4 hours ago, monorailmedic said:

Companies have loyalty programs because they can offer things of less than consequential value to keep customers.

I disagree!  For Ceil and I, the Diamond Lounge is HUGE!  On our last cruise (9N) all of our drinks came from being Diamond.  Our friends came with the intent of spending as little as possible, but once on board they were talked in the DBP.  Until that purchase our costs were identical.  We saved over $1200 compared to them.  We are budget cruisers (mostly insides & a few balconies) cut the total cost of our trip in half!  I would say that is very consequential!

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6 minutes ago, YOLO said:

I disagree!  For Ceil and I, the Diamond Lounge is HUGE!  On our last cruise (9N) all of our drinks came from being Diamond.  Our friends came with the intent of spending as little as possible, but once on board they were talked in the DBP.  Until that purchase our costs were identical.  We saved over $1200 compared to them.  We are budget cruisers (mostly insides & a few balconies) cut the total cost of our trip in half!  I would say that is very consequential!

First, I should clarify that I mean the value to the cruise line.  Of course they want to offer things that have at very least a perceived value (if not actual) to the guest - that's how they aim to hook people into coming back again and again.

To some guests, sure, that perk may be the difference between buying a drink package or not, but I'd bet that's the case for a reasonably small number - in part because of the restrictions on the number of drinks, in part because of the restrictions of what the drinks are.  If tomorrow you gave me diamond drink benefits, I'm sure I'd not use it a single time, as it doesn't cover anything I drink.  I may be one extreme, and someone who would stop paying a thousand dollar bar tabs because of this perk (via drink packages or not) is the other.  In your example however it isn't clear that this decision even occurred, instead you're talking about your friends who were talked into the drink package (at the most costly time I might add) compared to you who didn't get it.  The real question is if you would have spent more if you'd not have had the diamond.  I'd guess that answer is that you'd almost certainly have spent more - but how much?  If you'd have purchased the drink package, how much would have have drank and of what?  To RCI: What are the margins on those drinks?  If you'd have purchased a la cart the same type of questions apply.  It would be interesting to see how onboard spend and margins change as guests climb the loyalty ladder.  I'm confident RCI and other lines figure this all out, but find it unlikely we'd ever be privy to those stats.

If you find value in it, then that's awesome - and I'm glad.  The calculation I am talking about has to do with guests compromising on new experiences (trying other lines for example, let it be a direct competitor like NCL, or a sister brand like Celebrity) by spending more money to cruise with RCI until they've given them enough to start saving, for some, $30/day (for example) on a few drinks.  Another example of this is where I see some guests considering moving up to suites to get double points - quite certainly negating any savings had from a few well or call drinks during diamond hour.

Perhaps another way of articulating the way I see it is that I have a similar reaction to when someone says that x thing on a ship is free (frozen yoghurt, for example). It's not free - you paid for it in your fare.  For loyalty perks, none of them are free, they're just something that's been slowly paid for over a long period, but which represents a minute percentage of one's cruise fare - making the cruise, rather than the perks, a far great consideration when figuring value prop (for me at least - everyone is of course, different).

 

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21 hours ago, monorailmedic said:

When Billy & Rick talk about C&S, all they talked about was Diamond drinks.  They even quoted @Matt talking about Diamond drinks as saying "He has decided there are times when he doesn't need to buy a drink package anymore".

16 hours ago, monorailmedic said:

To some guests, sure, that perk may be the difference between buying a drink package or not, but I'd bet that's the case for a reasonably small number -

If tomorrow you gave me diamond drink benefits, I'm sure I'd not use it a single time, as it doesn't cover anything I drink.  I may be one extreme,

 @monorailmedic  Yes, two opposite ends of this use model - I agree.  Admittedly, I don't have any data, but just based on economics my bet would be that Diamond members are more likely to skip the DBP versus those get the DBP and skip getting a single Diamond drink.

Ceil & I did consciously decide not to purchase the DBP on our June 9N Anthem cruise due to our Diamond status.  Afterwards we had left over cruise money to spend.  Although unplanned, we booked another 9N Anthem cruise this October for $1611 (just a bit more than a 9N DBP) with that money.  For us, not buying the DBP was huge - and so isn't being a Diamond member on RCCL.

We cruise other lines, but we are now 20 days away from Diamond Plus (3 cruises).  I do plan to book RCCL as much as possible to get to DP by using "strategic escalation" as you say.  The OP of this thread did ask specifically about DP benefits and whether it is worth pushing for.  I say yes - to each his own and YMMV.

I like that this RCB forum can present both sides of an answer to member's questions.  As a moderator I think you would agree...

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2 hours ago, YOLO said:

When Billy & Rick talk about C&S, all they talked about was Diamond drinks.  They even quoted @Matt talking about Diamond drinks as saying "He has decided there are times when he doesn't need to buy a drink package anymore".

Very true, and that's because out of all the perks (save for the free Pinancle cruise, which falls into the "not reasonably attainable" category in my mind), the diamond drink benefit is probably something most would agree to be the most valuable, regardless of how much or little it might move the needle for any individual.  Hey @Matt, when was the last sailing you didn't buy a drink package? (honestly don't know)

2 hours ago, YOLO said:

Ceil & I did consciously decide not to purchase the DBP on our June 9N Anthem cruise due to our Diamond status.  Afterwards we had left over cruise money to spend.  Although unplanned, we booked another 9N Anthem cruise this October for $1611 (just a bit more than a 9N DBP) with that money.

That's pretty awesome.  I'd love to see that work out for others.  Like I said, for me, a few drinks from a selection that isn't interesting to me doesn't help.  If they added to the numbers and the options (which I don't anticipate one bit, but who knows) it'd be a different deal for us - but everyone's mileage may vary.  I am jealous 🙂

2 hours ago, YOLO said:

I like that this RCB forum can present both sides of an answer to member's questions.  As a moderator I think you would agree...

Absolutely!  That's one of the things I really love about RCLB message boards!  No one being honest with themselves loves or hates every aspect of an experience or product, and other communities that hold a "my way or the highway" stance just confuse me.  Well, there was that time @Matt banned everyone on the site who didn't pledge their undying love of falafel, but I can get behind that. 

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We have always cruised because we have enjoyed cruising but after our 8th Royal cruise we got access to the Concierge Lounge....WoW we were blown away, that was a long time ago and because of the awesome nights spent in those CL we have been cruising with Royal for over 20 years. We believe they have the best loyalty program today. We sail other companies but always feel we get better value for money and more enjoyment on a Royal cruise than any other. I think it's worth getting to Diamond Plus and after that Pinnacle!

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4 hours ago, Rob&Ana said:

We have always cruised because we have enjoyed cruising but after our 8th Royal cruise we got access to the Concierge Lounge....WoW we were blown away, that was a long time ago and because of the awesome nights spent in those CL we have been cruising with Royal for over 20 years. We believe they have the best loyalty program today. We sail other companies but always feel we get better value for money and more enjoyment on a Royal cruise than any other. I think it's worth getting to Diamond Plus and after that Pinnacle!

Agreed!  Thanks for your comments...

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This may be answered somewhere i could not find it but here is my question.  I know u earn one point for everyday on the trip. My question is that I am looking at booking 3 rooms. Do I get 3 points or one per day?

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