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Kingk92

Harmony vs. Symphony

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So, the wife and I just got off our 7 day Eastern caribbean on the Harmony last week. It was the wife's first time on a cruise and she is hooked lol We are looking at booking another one for next year and was seeing if anyone has done the Harmony and Symphony? If so, is it worth doing the Symphony next or is it like being on the same ship?

 

Also, wanting some other ships that you all have liked we aren't dead set on the Symphony yet. We are wanting to sail out of the East coast so try and keep that in mind for suggestions. Thanks!

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6 hours ago, Kingk92 said:

So, the wife and I just got off our 7 day Eastern caribbean on the Harmony last week. It was the wife's first time on a cruise and she is hooked lol We are looking at booking another one for next year and was seeing if anyone has done the Harmony and Symphony? If so, is it worth doing the Symphony next or is it like being on the same ship?

 

Also, wanting some other ships that you all have liked we aren't dead set on the Symphony yet. We are wanting to sail out of the East coast so try and keep that in mind for suggestions. Thanks!

I’d say if you can find Symphony at a decent price go for it. Unfortunately most of the time there’s a large difference between Harmony and Symphony. I’d refer to what @matt always says, something to the effect of “Harmony is the original movie, it’s great, Symphony is a great sequel but still a sequel”

Harmony= Godfather

Symphony= Godfather 2 

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The two ships are very similar but there are some noticeable differences.  The sequel analogy is very appropriate.  Symphony is newer and has a bit of a price premium because of that.  You may also want to look at the other two Oasis class ships (Allure and Oasis) as they don't seem to have the price premium as their two younger sisters.  Both are going to be AMPed soon so they will get some new bells and whistles.

Oasis is also going to be sailing from New Jersey which may be more convenient for you coming from the mid-Atlantic states.

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Same ship IMHO. With that being said, anything in the Oasis Class is a great cruise experience. Each has their own identity (dining venues, lounge location, Abyss, Starbucks location). There’s other ships in the fleet we enjoy like Mariner, Navigator, Indy but we sail Oasis Class at every available opportunity because my kids love it (my wife & I do too!).

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@Kingk92  Are you looking at Central East Coast?  Is so, make sure you check out the port of Cape Liberty, NJ.  We just booked another Anthem cruise for next March.  That will be 3 Anthem cruises in a row for us, all out of NJ.  We like the Anthem (any ship with a nice solarium really).  I would rather that all of those 3 cruises be on Oasis class ships, but we can't afford that.  We have been very happy with the Anthem's inside rooms.  They have a great amount of storage and the virtual balcony is both fun and convenient.  And the ship is fun too.  We are booked on the Harmony for Nov 1 2020, which will be the first time on that ship for us and we can't wait.  For us, we will wait for the price to come down a bit on the Symphony.

My recommendation would be to consider two Anthem cruises for the price of one Symphony cruise - especially if you can drive to the port and save the airfare.  We booked our three Anthem cruises for $105 pppd (per person per day) on average.  For us, that allows us 2 7N cruises for the same money we would normally spend on just 1 7N.  Anyway you go, I doubt you will be disappointed...

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Welcome to the cruising world now that she is hooked!

I love the fact that most Royal ships within a class have a familiar feel when you get onboard, but there are some slight changes that make each ship its own.

There is nothing wrong with booking the newest ship in the fleet - but know that the price will be higher because of that.  I would also look at ports of call along with which ships have been AMPlified while looking around for the next cruise.  While the ships are not all Oasis Class, they have some great new features on them.

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We've done HM twice and just sailed SY last month.  I was on a mission to compare the two ships.  The conclusion I came to was that they are essentially the same.  The differences are so minor (other than the shows obviously) that I would not be able to justify the much higher price tag of SY.  Now, if the price difference is minimal, then I would say do SY just because you haven't done it.  Or if you are like my husband, and you don't like to sail the same ship twice, then the obvious choice is SY for your next cruise.  But if that doesn't matter to you, then you are not missing much.  Like others have already mentioned, it is so similar.  In fact, there were a few times on our SY sailing, that I forgot and thought that I was on HM.  I blogged our SY trip and made comparisons along the way if you are interested.  Final thoughts near the end.

https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/boards/index.php?/topic/14288-“symphony-no-17-celebration-relaxation-exploration-reflection”-–-072719-–-080319/

 

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Have not sailed on either... yet. (Going on Harmony in 31 days) But... we have sailed on both the older sisters, Oasis and Allure. From everything I have gathered.... other then the obvious differences such as some dinning options, shows, slides... the ships are basically the same. So if you are looking to stay in the Oasis class... I would just weigh all your options, such as price, travel distance to port, itinerary, etc. 

We most recently sailed on Mariner of the Seas.... she might have a few years on her, but also worth checking out. She's no mega ship, but she's not small either.

The good thing about Royal is you are not lacking for options when it comes to ships. 

 

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Symphony has a huge sports bar called Playmakers on the boardwalk where Sabor and Starbucks are on Harmony.  Symphony also has El Loco Fresh on deck 15 which Harmony does not.  

Oasis and Allure will also soon have their boardwalk setup like Symphony and will have El Loco Fresh after their royal amplifications.  They’ll also have the perfect storm water slides and the ultimate abyss slides.   Oasis for cruises starting in November 2019 and Allure cruises starting in April 2020.  After their amplifications, both Oasis and Allure will also have the Portside BBQ restaurant, which neither Symphony nor Harmony have.

Harmony has no pool in the adults only solarium, ..... Symphony, Oasis, and Allure all do have pools in the solarium.

In my personal opinion, once Oasis and Allure receive their amplifications, Harmony will be the WORST of the 4 Oasis class ships ........... Both Oasis and Allure have some really good pricing for cruises that occur AFTER their royal amplifications too.  

Portside BBQ:

https://www.royalcaribbean.com/cruise-dining/portside-bbq

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1 minute ago, ChrisK2793 said:

In my personal opinion, once Oasis and Allure receive their amplifications, Harmony will be the WORST of the 4 Oasis class ships

Very true but that will only be for a short time because HM will be due for a dry dock in 2021 and she might get additions to match the rest in terms of dining.  Just a guess, but a ship does go into dry dock every 5 years so she is due.

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1 hour ago, ChrisK2793 said:

Harmony has no pool in the adults only solarium, ..... Symphony, Oasis, and Allure all do have pools in the solarium.

 

I wish RC could have left Oasis in PC.  I booked Harmony for April with the assumption (I know, I know...) that it would have a pool in the 

Solarium (where I spend most of my time).  It never crossed my mind that there wouldn't be one.   

Don't get me wrong - I don't care if it's the SS Minnow - as long as I'm cruising, I'm happy, but I LOVE Oasis, and love the Solarium pool.

 

As to other RC ships - I've only been on Lady O and Freedom.  Freedom is a fantastic ship, but the Solarium is nothing like Oasis class.

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1 hour ago, ChrisK2793 said:

Harmony has no pool in the adults only solarium, ..... Symphony, Oasis, and Allure all do have pools in the solarium.

OH NO !!!  Please let this not be true !

We have four couples booked on Harmony for Nov 1 2020.  My wife is not going to like this when I tell her.  Seriously, why in the world would they do that?  What could they possibly be thinking?  This is just awful news for us as we too spend a lot of free time in the solarium...

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13 minutes ago, twangster said:

Don't rule out Oasis or Allure.  They are getting AMPED and soon will be all of that and possibly more.  

#NotYourGrandfathersOasisClassShip

So true.  We rounded off all the OA class ships with SY last month and now we are circling back to do Oasis in March, then HM again, then Allure after her amp.  Cannot wait.  I was just telling Hubby that OA is going to be almost like brand new ship from what we remembered back in 2009.

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2 hours ago, YOLO said:

OH NO !!!  Please let this not be true !

We have four couples booked on Harmony for Nov 1 2020.  My wife is not going to like this when I tell her.  Seriously, why in the world would they do that?  What could they possibly be thinking?  This is just awful news for us as we too spend a lot of free time in the solarium...

Yolo, it’s true ........ perhaps you guys can change to Oasis or Allure for the same dates?  Both of them seem to price way better than Harmony and Symphony too.

Well before your sail date, both Oasis and Allure will be amped and will be even better than Symphony ...... they’ll both have the Portside BBQ that the other 2 will be lacking as well as everything that Symphony has now.

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My very first cruise ever is in Jan, 2020 and deciding on which ship to experience for the first time was crucial.

I've researched all the royal caribbean line and ended up with a simple logic:

Since it will be my first cruise I wanted to spend a little extra just to experience the biggest and newest ship.

This will greatly encourage my already impending addiction to cruising haha.

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5 hours ago, USCG Teacher said:

download.jpg.6cd05ea4f6a5697ccc558533edcf84bb.jpg

LOL! Just don't touch or eat anything if you go Carnival... another failing sanitation grade from the CDC!

At least they weren't stranded at sea with no working plumbing this time! One of the only cruise lines that I have no desire to sail (unless it was free).

https://www.newsweek.com/carnival-cruise-ship-fails-health-inspection-report-dead-flies-1453497

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/carnival-fantasy-cruise-ship-fails-inspection-by-federal-centers-for-disease-control-and-prevention/

https://nypost.com/2019/08/15/gross-carnival-ship-earns-the-lines-worst-sanitation-grade-ever/

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12 minutes ago, JohnK6404 said:

LOL! Just don't touch or eat anything if you go Carnival... another failing sanitation grade from the CDC!

At least they weren't stranded at sea with no working plumbing this time! One of the only cruise lines that I have no desire to sail (unless it was free).

https://www.newsweek.com/carnival-cruise-ship-fails-health-inspection-report-dead-flies-1453497

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/carnival-fantasy-cruise-ship-fails-inspection-by-federal-centers-for-disease-control-and-prevention/

https://nypost.com/2019/08/15/gross-carnival-ship-earns-the-lines-worst-sanitation-grade-ever/

if it isnt the sanitation or ship stranded at sea with no electricity there was the sinking of the concordia which was/is owned by them.

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My first cruise was on Symphony a few weeks ago. We have since already booked a May cruise on Harmony.  So I have no first hand knowledge myself.

 

But, we went with some family members who have cruised on Harmony twice before and this was their first time on Symphony as well. The husband didn't realize they were on a different ship until day 2 or 3. He just thought they moved a couple of things around.

 

So my take a way is that they are very similar,  made my choice on booking harmony easier.

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