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Rhapsody of the Seas - Mar 16, 2024 - Mar 23, 2024 (7 Night Costa Rica & Panama Canal) RoyalCaribbeanBlog Group Cruise


AshleyDillo
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On 4/2/2022 at 10:56 AM, twangster said:

Booked!  

Looks like round trip flights to PTY aren't that bad, at least looking into the future as far as I can right now.

I was looking at them on Friday.... it almost seems to be right in line with flying to San Juan.... maybe even cheaper. 

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On 4/1/2022 at 5:58 PM, AshleyDillo said:

This is where being part of a group will be a benefit. We are all in the same situation. We have a team of TAs to help scope things out for us and look into things such as group space in a hotel the night before. You can bounce ideas off everyone else in the group and benefit from everyone else's research!

Fortunately, like many others, I book everything through @michelle, so I know we'll be in great shape with this.  Talk about a Bucket List itinerary

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 4/4/2022 at 8:33 AM, coneyraven said:

Fortunately, like many others, I book everything through @michelle, so I know we'll be in great shape with this.  Talk about a Bucket List itinerary

We also booked this through @michelle at MEI.  We live in Baltimore County, Maryland and will be interested to see what air arrangements are made (in our case, from BWI) and transfers.  As far as I can tell, the prices quoted are the same as if we booked directly with RCL.  I hope MEI can do something eventually based on the size of the group.

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6 hours ago, AshleyDillo said:

That's because they have it categorized with the Caribbean sailings instead of Panama Canal 🙄

thanks found it.  that's a pricey trip and you have to fly to Panama to get the ship. i'll pass on this one. 

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18 hours ago, D Alt said:

thanks found it.  that's a pricey trip and you have to fly to Panama to get the ship. i'll pass on this one. 

I'm hoping that the price drops some. It's a small ship, so a lot less space to sell and it's pretty far into the future. I even booked at NextCruise and the price wasn't lower when my MEI TA pulled it into the group. It's refundable, so I have a loooong time to make a decision if this is actually feasible for me or not 🙂

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  • 1 month later...
On 4/1/2022 at 10:20 AM, topher4519 said:

Is anyone concerned, that Rhapsody of the Seas has been anchored outside St. Maarten for 2 years.    The ship needs a lot of help!    I was on Explorer of the seas March 20-27 2022.   When we sailed past there was a lot of maintenance needed.

THIS !!!   YES !!!  😨  @topher4519  @AshleyDillo  @Matt

We are cancelling our Jan 15th 2023 Ultimate Caribbean on Rhapsody for this reason.  We last sailed on her in Alaska in 2013.  If you have $150M you can buy her.  Last week on the President's Cruise I met Brian and Guyla.  Guyla told me just how bad the ship was on their last cruise.  They were in a suite and they had trouble sleeping due to the ship creaking.  There were other issues too.  Talking to the staff and officers was no help.  She swore she would never go on that ship again.  They are D+ and said it was the only Royal ship they would never cruise on again.  She wanted to ask Mike Bayley why it was still a part of the fleet during the Q&A with him, but instead asked a menu question about their booked World Cruise.  As much as I would love this cruise I am now very leery of Rhapsody...

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2753581-rhapsody-of-the-seas-for-sale/

https://www.cruzely.com/royal-caribbean-ship-listed-for-sale-priced-at-just-150-million/

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1 hour ago, YOLO said:

As much as I would love this cruise I am now very leery of Rhapsody...

I can find very negative reviews of pretty much any Royal Caribbean ship, CocoCay, Star Wars, and ice cream. Would that change your opinion of those things?

My point is don't let others' opinions prevent you from at least trying the ship.

I've sailed on Rhapsody before (Spring Break 2018). Not my favorite ship by any means, but I didn't hate it or regret booking it. 

Not to mention this itinerary is extremely port intensive, so we're not spending a ton of sea days onboard.

 

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Royal doesn't have anything larger than Radiance class that can go through the Panama Canal including the new locks.

I've done Vision through the canal and it was awesome.  Rhapsody (sister to Vision) will be just fine and will use the older locks.  You'll be able to go out on deck 5 and see the locks mere feet away.  Sailing an older ship through such history is very fitting.

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While I am here...  I'd highly recommend reading this book before boarding any Panama Canal cruise:

"The Path Between the Seas: The Creation of the Panama Canal, 1870-1914" By David McCullough

There are also some videos available on streaming sources such as Amazon, Smithsonian, Engineering Marvels, etc.  It's worth a few bucks to rent them.  PBS used to have a video on YT but it has since been taken down.  

It is a fascinating engineering and political feat the likes of which we are unlikely to ever see repeated on this scale.

Having watched many videos and having read books about the canal it made the day in the canal so much more interesting.  

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8 hours ago, YOLO said:

They were in a suite and they had trouble sleeping due to the ship creaking.

Appreciate the heads up and the concern!

I actually stayed in a suite on Harmony in January and it was the creakiest room I've ever experienced!

I'm not going on this cruise for the ship.  I've been on Vision so I know what to experience.  Was on that one for the itinerary as well.  This cruise is all about the itinerary and the people.  

I'm not booked in a suite, so I'm booked refundable so I can always back out if needed.  If something is amiss with Rhapsody's tenure with Royal, then we'll either get transferred to another ship or canceled with a refund, so I'm not overly concerned at all 🙂

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10 hours ago, YOLO said:

THIS !!!   YES !!!  😨  @topher4519  @AshleyDillo  @Matt

We are cancelling our Jan 15th 2023 Ultimate Caribbean on Rhapsody for this reason.  We last sailed on her in Alaska in 2013.  If you have $150M you can buy her.  Last week on the President's Cruise I met Brian and Guyla.  Guyla told me just how bad the ship was on their last cruise.  They were in a suite and they had trouble sleeping due to the ship creaking.  There were other issues too.  Talking to the staff and officers was no help.  She swore she would never go on that ship again.  They are D+ and said it was the only Royal ship they would never cruise on again.  She wanted to ask Mike Bayley why it was still a part of the fleet during the Q&A with him, but instead asked a menu question about their booked World Cruise.  As much as I would love this cruise I am now very leery of Rhapsody...

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2753581-rhapsody-of-the-seas-for-sale/

https://www.cruzely.com/royal-caribbean-ship-listed-for-sale-priced-at-just-150-million/

Those "ship for sale" ads are fake.  They've been around for a decade and over that time featured many other cruise lines and ships.  Every so often someone else discoveres these fake ads and we have the discussion all over again.

At some point in time Vision class and then Radiance class will be sold.  At some point in time Voyager class will be sold off.  At some point in time Freedom class will be sold off.  At some point in time Oasis class with be sold off.   Ships don't last forever.  No one but Royal knows when the ships will leave the fleet.  Until it's announced the ships continue to operate normally.  If someone offered Royal ten billion dollars Wonder would be for sale.  Every ship has a sale price.  

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I know me saying/writing this would never hold up in court and Judge Judy would have my butt for mentioning this, but Guyla told me that she worked he way up to senior staff on Rhapsody and they admitted to her that Rhapsody was in fact for sale twice.  So I can't prove this as fact and am not saying it is, so for me caveat emptor is the best approach.  I plan to  read more Rhapsody reviews...

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12 hours ago, YOLO said:

I know me saying/writing this would never hold up in court and Judge Judy would have my butt for mentioning this, but Guyla told me that she worked he way up to senior staff on Rhapsody and they admitted to her that Rhapsody was in fact for sale twice.  So I can't prove this as fact and am not saying it is, so for me caveat emptor is the best approach.  I plan to  read more Rhapsody reviews...

Of course... all Vision and Radiance class ships are available to any serious buyer.  However they need to be careful they don't sell them to a startup company that would become a competitor and erode sales. So it's not so simple as it say a ship is for sale to anyone like an old VW sitting on a used car lot.

At some point "soon" they will be gone.  Is that in the next 1 - 2 years or 5 - 10 years?  I'm not sure even Royal knows right now.  it will happen when it happens.   By the year 2035 it's pretty safe to say they will all be gone.  By the year 2025 maybe some or all will be gone.  By 2023 it's very uncertain if any of them will be gone.  Despite that when it happens someone is going to come back to these threads and say "I told you they were for sale!".

Over the years many ships have left the fleet.  How or why they leave isn't important.  Until a departure is announced officially it is business as normal.  When it comes to the Panama Canal if you want to do it on Royal you had better do it "soon".  Once these two classes of ship leave the fleet there will be no more Panama Canal on Royal.  

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15 hours ago, twangster said:

Those "ship for sale" ads are fake.  They've been around for a decade and over that time featured many other cruise lines and ships.  Every so often someone else discoveres these fake ads and we have the discussion all over again.

So I needn’t start a new “Rumor” thread regarding Wonder of the seas being for sale? 

I will also terminate my efforts on designing a Go Fund Me to purchase Wonder I planned to present to this Blog.

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1 hour ago, AlmondFarmer said:

So I needn’t start a new “Rumor” thread regarding Wonder of the seas being for sale? 

I will also terminate my efforts on designing a Go Fund Me to purchase Wonder I planned to present to this Blog.

If you can raise billions of dollars on a GoFund Me page you can quite almond farming now.  🙂 

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