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Rumors run rampant and have for many years.  

For several years we have lived under the threat of "changes are coming" only to have no changes come.  

Honestly I'm not sure there is a problem.  The C&A program is immensely successful.  It is doing exactly what it is designed to do - generate loyalty and return customers.  A crowded loyalty lounge is a good thing, not a bad thing.  Let's face it the lounge sits mostly empty for hour after hour.  They only get crowded when the drinks are free.    

While people create rumors of point thresholds changing I don't see that happening.  I built a graph of different cruise line loyalty programs and what it takes to reach the top in each program.  I adjusted each to normalize for the different top levels such as 700 on Royal and 3,000 on Celebrity.  

123513379_CruiseLineLoyaltyCharts.jpeg.1312b80d16621a4e63943b7194b5b89c.jpeg

Crown and Anchor does start off a little wonky before reaching Diamond but if that is the "golden point" after reaching that level all cruise line thresholds to level up track each other pretty well.

So why would Royal buck this trend and do something wild with their thresholds when it has a very successful program doing exactly what it is designed to do? 

They could reduce the Platinum threshold to create a better logical progression.  The jump from Gold to Platinum is 10 X while the jump from Platinum to Emerald is only 1.8 X.  This early threshold anomaly is the only thing that stands out compared to the competition.

 

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23 minutes ago, Flacruiser99 said:

However I have seen baseless rumors come true:10_wink:

Anyone can get lucky.

I could see them adjusting benefits or perks.  Pinnacle access to Coastal Kitchen for example.  On high Pinnacle count cruises they have been limiting CK access for Pinnacles.  This could become a standard.  CK and the Royal Suite Class (Sea/Sky/Star) has only been around for 3 years so some fine tuning may be due.  

Over the years they have made changes to CAS including introducing the concept of Pinnacle.  Swiping cards in the DL could become standard and that would eliminate the pre-Diamond that slip into the lounges to score free drinks.  Once they start swiping then unlimited drinks may go away and they could enforce the 3 drink rule inside the club.  Allowing binge drinking and drunkenness in the clubs isn't exactly a great thing.     

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On 12/16/2019 at 9:01 AM, twangster said:

Anyone can get lucky.

I could see them adjusting benefits or perks.  Pinnacle access to Coastal Kitchen for example.  On high Pinnacle count cruises they have been limiting CK access for Pinnacles.  This could become a standard.  CK and the Royal Suite Class (Sea/Sky/Star) has only been around for 3 years so some fine tuning may be due.  

Over the years they have made changes to CAS including introducing the concept of Pinnacle.  Swiping cards in the DL could become standard and that would eliminate the pre-Diamond that slip into the lounges to score free drinks.  Once they start swiping then unlimited drinks may go away and they could enforce the 3 drink rule inside the club.  Allowing binge drinking and drunkenness in the clubs isn't exactly a great thing.     

The only thing sometimes they seem to be going in the opposite direction, . I remember when you were not allowed to take drinks out of the lounge (sometimes you could pour your drink into paper coffee cup to sneak it out) now at 8pm there is a line of folks bring glasses of wine to dinner.

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1 hour ago, Flacruiser99 said:

The only thing sometimes they seem to be going in the opposite direction, . I remember when you were not allowed to take drinks out of the lounge (sometimes you could pour your drink into paper coffee cup to sneak it out) now at 8pm there is a line of folks bring glasses of wine to dinner.

The diamond club concierge can't stop us all!

CGuvF-2U8AAkrJp.jpg:large

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On 12/19/2019 at 1:16 PM, monctonguy said:

Don't change it anytime soon please!!!!!..I will be about 2 cruises(7 nighters) away from Diamond after 2020..quite a feat considering I have only done once a 7 night cruise..most of my cruises have been 4 nighter's...taking awhile but I want my Diamond perks!!:8_laughing:

I finally hit diamond last week.  After 7 years.  Not planning to go to D+, just taking cruises and see what happens.  

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  • 1 month later...

I think that RCI should allow the 3 free drinks to be any drink up to a pre-determined value, say $12, and not just those on the “Diamond” list. That might encourage drinkers to go to other bars on the ship and not jam up the Diamond and Concierge Lounges where the drinks choice is quite limited.

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19 minutes ago, Jim S said:

I think that RCI should allow the 3 free drinks to be any drink up to a pre-determined value, say $12, and not just those on the “Diamond” list. That might encourage drinkers to go to other bars on the ship and not jam up the Diamond and Concierge Lounges where the drinks choice is quite limited.

It may come to that as CAS numbers continue to grow and grow.  The diamond lounge might have to stop serving drinks all together and everyone uses their seapass 'coupons'.   

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Just to add.....in one of the Facebook groups last week someone posted the breakdown of C&A on board:

Serenade top tier January 20, 2020 sailing. 

CAS onboard.  1767
 
Gold.  483
Platinum.  297
Emerald.  145
Diamond.  458
D+.  322
Pinnacle.  62
 
Top 3 
  3) 2417 points
  2) 2481 points 
  1)  2668 points

It was so crowded at Diamond and above (almost 850) that Diamond was sent to Safari for their happy hour. 

I think it’s become too easy to reach Diamond. You can be Diamond in as little as 6, seven night cruises in a junior suite. 

Honestly I’d rather they just load my card with my 3 drinks to be used anywhere, anytime and maybe just offer a concierge service. 

Of course I should talk 😂 I got the benefit of being grandfathered when C&A was reworked. We reached Diamond a little sooner than normal. 

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37 minutes ago, Jaymac Radio said:

Ok I Want To Add Something I Saw Them Doing On Mariner, When I Was In The DL They Were Writing Down Your Cabin Numbers, I Asked What That Was For And I Was Told That C&A Is Trying To Keep Track Of How Many People Use The Free Drinks At The Lounge.   

They weren’t doing that back in October on Mariner. 

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14 hours ago, Jill said:

I think it’s become too easy to reach Diamond. You can be Diamond in as little as 6, seven night cruises in a junior suite. 

I'd point out most people do not cruise that often.  Before I ever started this blog, I thought cruising once a year was quite an accomplishment. 

Diamond is really something for the Über cruiser, who goes a lot.

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When I started cruising almost 20 years ago, cruising was much more expensive. You can now get a window room for less than we paid when I started cruising. I have met Pinnacles who brag about how little it cost them to reach Pinnacle by going back to back in inside cabins. The situation has changed dramatically. It would not surprise me to see major changes as the numbers swell. I think most people see it coming and are mad about it, but it seems inevitable. 

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Like @Matt said most people do not cruise that often. I doubt RCC is going to totally change or revamp the system because it works. They want the lounges full, it probably cost less than one D/D+ person cruise fare to cover all the alcohol the D(s) drink for the entire cruise. The most important thing is your are there and will be back. Mainly because you put too much into this loyalty program to quit. RCC has a good product, I want to hit Diamond and since I am a solo cruiser I could probably do it in less than 3 years. But that is not my overall goal. Enjoying my vacation is.

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