Jump to content
LuciaYSL

The Key? Is it worth the price?

Recommended Posts

Hi has anyone purchased The Key for a recent cruise?  If so, how was the experience?  Was it worth the money in your opinion?  I have read reviews  from other forums that gave it a somewhat mixed review. I’m curious to hear what seasoned RCCL patrons think of it. I’m new to RCCL, therefor I don’t qualify for any of the priority amenities yet.  Thank you for any advice or comments in advance. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Welcome to the boards. So many factors go into that. The cabin you have, the ship you are on the perks that you might enjoy.  If you search on the key here you will see that there are many many posts about this and you should be able to find a ton of information here to help influence your choice as to whether or not to purchase it. The opinions run the gambit from absolutely yes to absolutely no to a general maybe :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Welcome @LuciaYSL!

To really over simplify it... how do YOU value the perks? Everyone has their own opinion and perspective... I can tell you that we, along with our friends, absolutely loved the Key on Allure back in May. I can only speak from experience from an Oasis class ship perspective. We are also just Platinum members in C&A and have not booked a suite, so there is no other way for us to experience VIP treatment.

If you plan on purchasing the VOOM Surf & Stream package for each person anyway and you can get the Key for say $24.99 or less, then in my opinion it's a very easy decision. We got it on Allure for $19.99, just purchased it yesterday for Oasis for $21.99 for MAY 2020 (hope it drops to $19.99 again :27_sunglasses:), and plan on purchasing it for Symphony for APR 2021.

In our case after crunching the numbers, effectively for the cost of ONE glass of wine per day, both my wife and I can get all of the other Key meals/benefits (over the VOOM package cost for 2 devices). Remember, like with the Deluxe Beverage Package, that everyone in your cabin must also purchase the Key.

If you do not plan on purchasing the VOOM package for everyone in your cabin, then the Key may not make sense for you... 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
36 minutes ago, LuciaYSL said:

Hi has anyone purchased The Key for a recent cruise?  If so, how was the experience?  Was it worth the money in your opinion?  I have read reviews  from other forums that gave it a somewhat mixed review. I’m curious to hear what seasoned RCCL patrons think of it. I’m new to RCCL, therefor I don’t qualify for any of the priority amenities yet.  Thank you for any advice or comments in advance. 

I would say yes if you are planing to buy an internet package.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I bought it for our past July cruise on symphony for 19.99 a day for the wife and I. Since we both wanted internet I thought I might as well.

For our upcoming may 2020 harmony cruise the price just dropped from 31.99 to 26.99 today on my cruise planner.  Still more than I'd really like to pay, but I'm tempted.  This is only our 2nd cruise,  would the priority boarding be a benefit at port Canaveral? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I second the idea that if you are going to get internet anyway AND it’s a good price, then it’s worth it.

It wasn’t worth it for 39.99 pp/pd on our Aug 2020 Oasis Cruise when we first booked. But now, it is 21.99 so we booked the Key and canceled the internet packages. 

It is a bunch of little luxuries that might make for a smoother vacation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have bought it for $17 pp/pd for a cruise in a months time/ 

 

As i was buying internet anyway, and we get the Chops lunch, reserved seats and debarcation day Bfast (we are driving home so planned on leaving late) i feel it will be worth it.

 

Will let you know when i get back

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I nagged and NAGGED my husband because he  wanted to book The Key. He’s always been a bougie elitist... the quintessential champagne drinker on a beer budget 😂 We normally only get one internet package, so I wasn’t convinced of the added value...

Our upcoming sailing on Harmony is practically sold out... and while I was savvy by pre-booking our entertainment... With the ship being so full, there are so many factors with dinner (UDP and no reservations) and whatnot... I’m happy we have a little more wiggle room! I will post a blog of our trip and put details in there about whether it ended up being worth it to us! 
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, S0nny said:

I nagged and NAGGED my husband because he  wanted to book The Key. He’s always been a bougie elitist... the quintessential champagne drinker on a beer budget 😂 We normally only get one internet package, so I wasn’t convinced of the added value...

Our upcoming sailing on Harmony is practically sold out... and while I was savvy by pre-booking our entertainment... With the ship being so full, there are so many factors with dinner (UDP and no reservations) and whatnot... I’m happy we have a little more wiggle room! I will post a blog of our trip and put details in there about whether it ended up being worth it to us! 
 

Just a little tip based on our experience on Allure with the Key. Plan to arrive no later than 15 minutes or so before the show starts (sure beats the typical 30+ minutes and a prayer to get decent seats especially with a group).

We pushed it to 10 minutes once at the Aqua Theater and just made it! The crew members explained that about 8 minutes or so before the show starts they drop the rope to the reserved section to fill the section.

Have a great time! :27_sunglasses:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, Vwjo said:

What is "Choice" departure?

One of the benefits of The Key.  See below.  Thanks!

  • On debarkation day, an exclusive a la carte breakfast and choice departure

Basically, you are not given a specific time for departure (or ship location to wait)... you are escorted off the ship when you are done with your Key breakfast and/or when you are ready and choose to depart the ship.

We worked our way down to the main dining room (MDR) when we were ready to eat and had the nice "Key" a la carte departure breakfast (breakfast hours were 6:30AM - 9:00AM). They watched our carry-ons which we left just outside the MDR while we ate. Once we finished breakfast, we headed over to a designated location (Champagne Bar in the Royal Promenade for us on Allure) to wait to be escorted off of the ship.

They lead groups off the ship every 15 minutes or so. I guess we had good timing as we only had to wait about 5 minutes and they escorted us off the ship and through the terminal past the long lines to our luggage (designated luggage area for Key members). We collected our luggage (porters available) and were lead through the Star class lane to what appeared to be a dedicated customs agent (absolutely no line!). In total, it took about 10-15 minutes from the time we left the Champagne Bar to the time we got into the taxi outside of the terminal.

They will let you know what time to have your bags outside your cabin the evening before as I believe they collect those bags first since you effectively decide when you want to depart. I believe they had asked us to have the bags outside our cabin by 11:00PM.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, ChrisK2793 said:


If you’re staying in a grand suite or above on an Oasis class or Quantum class ship, it’s 1000000% NOT worth it.  You already 99% of the benefits included with the price of your suite.

 

We are gonna be in a JR suite. I already know it doesn't come with internet included,  but is the priority boarding the same as the key's?

The special disembarcation is nice tho.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Vwjo said:

What is "Choice" departure?

One of the benefits of The Key.  See below.  Thanks!

  • On debarkation day, an exclusive a la carte breakfast and choice departure

I always wondered...what is the difference between The Key's "Choice Departure" and the "Regular Departure"/"Self-Assist Departure"?

I know people's experience with the Key is that a crew member will take you straight to customs and bypassing the general line. However, disembarking at Cape Liberty, I don't think that was the case. Unless we missed something? *We just hopped on the regular line with our luggage, got through customs, and in less than 5 minutes, we were outside waiting for our ride.

*Edit: We had the Key

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, cobra614 said:

We are gonna be in a JR suite. I already know it doesn't come with internet included,  but is the priority boarding the same as the key's?

The special disembarcation is nice tho.

I don’t think junior suites get to go into the suite boarding lounge like the people with the Key do ........ but really, the suite guests who are in the lounge before 11, only get to board a few minutes before they let everybody else board.  In fact, when we went on Symphony last month, by the time we got out of the suite lounge when they opened boarding at 11am, tons of non-suite guests were already right there boarding with us.  The boarding process is definitely not worth buying the Key for.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, RockerDom31 said:

I always wondered...what is the difference between The Key's "Choice Departure" and the "Regular Departure"/"Self-Assist Departure"?

You get debarkation luggage tags with The Key so they can put their luggage out the night before debarkation.  Those bags will get pulled off and put in the terminal for collection ahead of the typical numbered tags, same as the suites/pinnacles tag.  This way The Key folks can leave when they wish to and know that their luggage will be waiting for them in the terminal.

Self-assist folks have to handle their own luggage.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, cobra614 said:

We are gonna be in a JR suite. I already know it doesn't come with internet included,  but is the priority boarding the same as the key's?

The special disembarcation is nice tho.

I had the Key in a JS on Allure this past May. Junior Suites can board with the suites and go through suite security/wait in the lounge, but there is no priority disembarkation without the Key. For boarding, suite boarding is before Key. The order called when I was there was (unannounced) Back to back cruisers, Star Class, Suites & Pinnacles, Key, then Diamond Plus etc for C&AS. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/21/2019 at 10:36 AM, RockerDom31 said:

I always wondered...what is the difference between The Key's "Choice Departure" and the "Regular Departure"/"Self-Assist Departure"?

I know people's experience with the Key is that a crew member will take you straight to customs and bypassing the general line. However, disembarking at Cape Liberty, I don't think that was the case. Unless we missed something? *We just hopped on the regular line with our luggage, got through customs, and in less than 5 minutes, we were outside waiting for our ride.

*Edit: We had the Key

I have to say that without the key that is basically our experience at Cape Liberty as well. We have taken the Thanksgiving trip many times (6 years this year) and it is the FASTEST port for embarkation and disembarkation. We do sail JS level for that trip typically as a treat to ourselves so we get the bonus of the easy walk on and we are walk off people and we do get down there early and have never had to wait at customs in line. Zip right through. It has a lot to do with the set up at Cape Liberty Port.  From the time we walk off and walk to the garage next door (its a 2 minute walk) and get in our car it seems less than 15 minutes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We had it on Ovation back in September and we loved it! We were going to do internet anyway and this was just a little bit more money. Not waiting in line was nice with my 13 year old, having priority disembarkation for all ports was nice. We LOVED having a embarkation lunch, no fighting for space in the windjammer! We got to know others with The Key and we made some great cruise friends. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We got "The Key" for our upcoming birthday/Christmas cruise thinking there was a limit on the number per cruise they would sell. I have since wondered if that is true. I mean, if 90% wanted "The Key" would they sell it to them? Anyone?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, rtread said:

We got "The Key" for our upcoming birthday/Christmas cruise thinking there was a limit on the number per cruise they would sell. I have since wondered if that is true. I mean, if 90% wanted "The Key" would they sell it to them? Anyone?

I have seen them sold out on sailings before, so there's definitely a limit for each sailing.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...