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BrianB
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Royal is increasing capacity from what I can see. Transatlantic for the Wonder Of The Seas was sold out according to my travel agent and now a lot of cabins are bookable since the CDC lowered to level 2. Feel a bit mixed about it, but for the industry that's good news.

 

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14 hours ago, SpicyCherry said:

We're on B2B April 30/May 7 sailings...wonder what the capacity will be. I'm with you....the thought of Hairspray not running isn't exactly breaking my heart!!

I anticipate we'll miss the spring break crowd, but it'll probably still be higher capacity. Either way, just happy to be back on board! 

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Symphony at 4000 this week as @GatorCruiser mentioned, and like previous cruises felt most full on day one and certain times of the day.  would like to find a staff count, but seems to me they have all they can handle. Being on her a few days now I’m convinced staff levels are what’s holding them to lower capacity more than anything else.  

Late seating dinner starts late because previous seating still pouring out, took two hours for the main course plates to come out, food is far and away the most mediocre and inconsistent we’ve ever had in many cruises with royal, waiters are being asked to serve too many tables which isn’t their fault but never remember who ordered what or what goes where, drinks are often painfully slow, there are zero wait staff walking pool deck during the day, pool bars are always slammed (when open, many bars don’t have the beer or bottle you’re looking for), deck chairs are all full or reserved, specialty dining (150 Central Park) was obviously much better but running a race booking everything day one instead of ahead of time was a pain, chops grille and hooked seafood booked for the whole week by 3pm on day one (suite guests obviously had a go in advance).  tots and babies under two years old families are limited to 10 hours of reserved time.  Wind jammer very busy and both sides closed odd hours, solarium bistro not open at all, certain hours of the day nowhere to eat except promenade pizza and wraps and long lines form, gets tough with kiddos and babies to keep them snacking and happy - it’s spring break so there’s teens everywhere, including all over the solarium day and night.  Not as much trivia or events during the day going on, what events there are get packed, dazzles was overwhelmed the other day with the few events they had in there all back to back. Speed test for surf and stream under 1mb in stateroom.

First world problems i know i know i know, happy to be back on a ship but hard for me to recommend the experience as being worth the money for anyone who is not an avid die hard cruise fan.  I’m sure it will get better but right now they are very short handed and not providing the full royal experience many are looking for.

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I would agree with @dr martini , pool bars are slammed, though flashing a little grease to the pool waiters helped the drink issue. We’ve eaten at hooked, 150 central and Jamie’s and have had good to great service across all three. Windjammer I will try to avoid at all costs. We’ve been getting light bites for breakfast at park cafe each morning. I can’t comment on MDR as we haven’t been yet. Trellis bar has been busy at times depending when you went. My kiddos are my governor for visiting other bars so far. Saw flight and it was awesome. Haven’t tried to get them into adventure ocean yet so I can’t comment on availability there. Seems like staff could be the rate limiting step in terms of overall service. But I’m just happy to be back in symphony nonetheless 

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14 minutes ago, GatorCruiser said:

I would agree with @dr martini , pool bars are slammed, though flashing a little grease to the pool waiters helped the drink issue. We’ve eaten at hooked, 150 central and Jamie’s and have had good to great service across all three. Windjammer I will try to avoid at all costs. We’ve been getting light bites for breakfast at park cafe each morning. I can’t comment on MDR as we haven’t been yet. Trellis bar has been busy at times depending when you went. My kiddos are my governor for visiting other bars so far. Saw flight and it was awesome. Haven’t tried to get them into adventure ocean yet so I can’t comment on availability there. Seems like staff could be the rate limiting step in terms of overall service. But I’m just happy to be back in symphony nonetheless 

If the biggest issue is bar service - I'm suddenly seeing giving up drinking as a big perk 🤪🤣

Thanks for the tips! We also tend to avoid the Windjammer (other than for dinner on occasion when we don't feel like getting cleaned up for the MDR) so it sounds like this will work out well for us even if capacity is high. 

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We just got off Symphony. Everything from our experience lines up with the other two people that already posted about it. Things fill up quick day 1! We were in a frenzy booking everything on the app as soon as we got on the ship Wi-Fi. We went straight to Adventure ocean to book for our baby and tits program just before 1pm and we were the first ones there. They limit your initial booking to 10 hours so everyone has a fair shot and they open up more hours later but if you try to wait until day of you probably won’t find any availability.

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47 minutes ago, Maiku said:

We just got off Symphony. Everything from our experience lines up with the other two people that already posted about it. Things fill up quick day 1! We were in a frenzy booking everything on the app as soon as we got on the ship Wi-Fi. We went straight to Adventure ocean to book for our baby and tits program just before 1pm and we were the first ones there. They limit your initial booking to 10 hours so everyone has a fair shot and they open up more hours later but if you try to wait until day of you probably won’t find any availability.

Wow, AO on Symphony was wide open the week before. They wouldn’t even take bookings.

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On 3/18/2022 at 4:02 PM, FamilyCruiseFan said:

I have family on the Wonder of the Seas, March 18th to 25th (third sailing) and passenger count is 4900 (800 kids per staff onboard). 

I was just on that sailing and that is about the same as what I was told - I asked at the front desk and they told me 4975 with about 1000 kids.

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Good Morning from Mariner of the Seas at CocoCay! The cruise director said we’re at around 90%. I called Guest Services out of curiosity and she said we have 2,987. If the fact sheet I found on the Mariner is correct (4000 passengers) then we’re at nearly 75%. Anywho, seems pretty full with long lines for everything. Lots of people having fun. Feels very much like pre-COVID. Yay! 🍹🍺🎉🚢

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21 hours ago, Matt said:

Mariner of the Seas 2950 guests for this sailing (March 26-31)

Sorry Matt! I didn’t notice you already posted yesterday. 🤪 Are you onboard? I’d love to meet you and any other wonderful folks from our blog. 

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1 hour ago, Debstr66 said:

Sorry Matt! I didn’t notice you already posted yesterday. 🤪 Are you onboard? I’d love to meet you and any other wonderful folks from our blog. 

Unfortunately, not. Someone else posted the guest count on Facebook so I thought I'd share

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12 minutes ago, GatorCruiser said:

Hope you are getting better weather there than we did 2 days ago. 

Very windy and high swells. They held off disembarking for 1.5 hrs to see if it would be safe to dock. They got ok and we are staying a extra hr. Winds have calm a bit, but on dock side the waves are crashing big time against the shore. But it’s sunny and sitting on by daybed at breezy point with a lava flow drink.

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23 minutes ago, Templecruiser said:

Very windy and high swells. They held off disembarking for 1.5 hrs to see if it would be safe to dock. They got ok and we are staying a extra hr. Winds have calm a bit, but on dock side the waves are crashing big time against the shore. But it’s sunny and sitting on by daybed at breezy point with a lava flow drink.

Glad to hear you are getting sun. We had calm seas but it was windy and overcast and spitting the whole time we were there. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

3401 passengers on FREEDOM OTS April4-8 which is about 75%.  Didn’t get the breakdown though…sorry!  Never really felt overcrowded except for our at sea day, the pool area was tough to find chairs so we went up to deck where Dunes golf is and found plenty.  We had our own little “pod”.  
 

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I'm confused. I have heard of spring break starting as early as the end of February and I thought it lasted through March. How much longer does it go? I usually cruise late April and I don't remember that many kids.

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