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New Paid Option for Shows in the Main Theater


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Guess what !  Royal is now charging for some of the shows in the main theater !

My cruise planner for my upcoming Allure sailing has an option for an "insider" view of Mama Mia ! for $79 PER PERSON.  This special "event" includes a cocktail, a photograph. preferred seating (whatever that means) and a meet and greet with the cast members.

What a joke !  I wouldn't even watch Mama Mia ! when it was free I'm SURE as he** not going to pay $79 PP (plus gratuity, I'm SURE) to see a bunch of cruise line singers and dancers perform.  It's even $79 for children - not that I would take a child to this show in the first place....

Are there going to be "free" showings of Mama Mia ! on this sailing ?  Hard to tell.  The only option for reserving this show in my Cruise Planner was the paid version but that MAY mean that you will be unable to make a reservation for anything except for the paid version.  There may still be free, unreserved performances.  I just don't know at this point.

It seems that this new paid option is showing up on many sailings (new CC thread) and everyone seems universally outraged.  I sure hope they end up with empty theaters for these paid performances or this may be something we will be seeing more of.

This is just a bridge WAAAYTOOO far as far as I'm concerned.  When they start charging for this second-rate entertainment they've gone waaay off the deep end.

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25 minutes ago, mamabdw said:

I just assumed this was an add-on activity that you could do, similar to getting a VIP or backstage pass. I would be very surprised if they only offer paid reservations for shows, but I could see them pushing paid experiences like the one you mentioned.

Yes, I think you're probably right but the fact that I cannot find any complimentary reservations available for this show at ALL has me concerned.  Of course, we had already chosen not to see Mama Mia ! at all on this cruise (this is the stupidest story line EVER) so it doesn't affect me at all but I'm thinking about future cruises and other peoples' cruises.

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Yikes! What’s next?  Where will it stop? 

I can’t imagine that there will be much interest in this.  Maybe this will die on its own. But then again, who knows what people will continue to pay extra for?

 RC is smart and has been successful, to this point, in finding additional ways to generate more revenue.   We, as consumers, determine how far they take stuff like this.  

  I’m still booking a annual RC cruise for my family.   We don’t opt for most of the extras because we are happy with the way we have always cruised so no real value for us.   It is definitely alarming though.  

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1 hour ago, arebee said:

Did you see they are "test" a higher cover charge for Johnny Rockets on the Oasis?  Going from $6.95 to $9.95.

Yes, I did.  This is waaaytooo expensive for JR.  I will continue to eat their free breakfast on the O class but will not be enjoying the other meals at that price.  Even premium hamburger joints on land do not charge $20+ for a burger meal.  Push, push, push.  That's all they know

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This option is also showing on my Feb. 17th Anthem sailing for We Will Rock You. It was not there yesterday. $79 for pre-show cocktail, premium seating, autographed photo and a meet and greet. We already have reservations for the show, so I would guess it will be an additional option for all shows on all ships eventually. 

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4 minutes ago, WAAAYTOOO said:

Even premium hamburger joints on land do not charge $20+ for a burger meal.

Come to NJ some time, Raye. You'll get an eye-opener for sure.

Granted, the burger joint I'm thinking of has the best damn burgers and home made potato chips I've ever had, and that $20+ also includes a pint of some seriously awesome local-area brewed trippel or porter.

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6 minutes ago, Lauren said:

This option is also showing on my Feb. 17th Anthem sailing for We Will Rock You. It was not there yesterday. $79 for pre-show cocktail, premium seating, autographed photo and a meet and greet. We already have reservations for the show, so I would guess it will be an additional option for all shows on all ships eventually. 

Since this is brand new, obviously nobody knows how it's going to work yet.  HOWEVER, I will simply relay from CC that one of the posters there said that they received a letter from Royal indicating that their reservation to We Will Rock You had been cancelled only to find out that the reservation that they had was for the show that now costs $79 PP.  

I completely concur with others that it makes no sense that they would try and have an ENTIRE THEATER of paid customers so I don't know what will happen to those who had reservations for a show, have had them cancelled and now the only reservation that is available is a paid one.  No Bueno.

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16 minutes ago, JLMoran said:

Come to NJ some time, Raye. You'll get an eye-opener for sure.

Granted, the burger joint I'm thinking of has the best damn burgers and home made potato chips I've ever had, and that $20+ also includes a pint of some seriously awesome local-area brewed trippel or porter.

Give details :) will be in NYC in Nov so may venture out to NJ 

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10 minutes ago, Ray said:

Give details :) will be in NYC in Nov so may venture out to NJ 

Heh, it would be about an hour's drive from NYC for either of the places I'm referring to:

  • Tiff's, 23 Route 23 South, Pequannock, NJ (tiffs23.com)
  • or the sister (and original) restaurant: Tiffany's, 73 Route 46 West, Pine Brook, NJ (tiffs46.com)

If you just venture across the Hudson river into Hoboken and go down the main road, you'll find at least a few craft beer pubs. Can't speak to the quality of their burgers, though.

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Oh, and both Tiff's and Tiffany's have a regularly rotating menu of microbrews on offer. All on tap, generally 30 different brews at any given time; IPAs, stouts, porters, brown ales, pilsners, witbiers, strong ales, and more. Whatever is in season and on offer from the local breweries in NY / NJ / PA

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This is as laughable as paying for the cup cake decorating class...or the MDR cookbook.

Looks like our sailings on the Allure have the 'free' option and the insider 'watch your wallet' version of Mama Mia!. Unfortunately...I am being forced to go...only because my wife is a massive ABBA fan. Will need to bring my sunglasses so she can't see my eyes closed whilst napping. :13_upside_down:

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3 hours ago, Lauren said:

This option is also showing on my Feb. 17th Anthem sailing for We Will Rock You. It was not there yesterday. $79 for pre-show cocktail, premium seating, autographed photo and a meet and greet. We already have reservations for the show, so I would guess it will be an additional option for all shows on all ships eventually. 

It is showing for my April Anthem cruise too. I already have free tickets.

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7 hours ago, WAAAYTOOO said:

Since this is brand new, obviously nobody knows how it's going to work yet.  HOWEVER, I will simply relay from CC that one of the posters there said that they received a letter from Royal indicating that their reservation to We Will Rock You had been cancelled only to find out that the reservation that they had was for the show that now costs $79 PP.  

I completely concur with others that it makes no sense that they would try and have an ENTIRE THEATER of paid customers so I don't know what will happen to those who had reservations for a show, have had them cancelled and now the only reservation that is available is a paid one.  No Bueno.

I saw that post too. Some are speculating that maybe only a handful of reservations were cancelled to make room for the "VIP seats". I love RC but this $79 thing is pushing it a bit too far. I have a bad feeling about this that they are testing it for something bigger. Hoping I am wrong. It shows up in my Anthem sailing too.

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Showing for my cruise on Harmony in May. The normal free reservations still showing. Think in @WAAAYTOOO case is the normal show reservations aren't open yet. So only the paid version is getting listed.

Toss in some screen shots. Love the fact the VIP seating is still "First-come, first-served", no assigned seat.5a6c10e6b2a52_Twoversions.thumb.JPG.33ac87e2e0eb2ef0dd4f6892c7ce1a4e.JPGinfo.thumb.JPG.4e91eeb09b834e58269e04931823377d.JPG

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This sounds like Pixels on Ovation in the 270 lounge. You could book the complementary show or pay I think it was $45 for the VIP experience. Kinda funny in some ways as normally in the case of VIP’s they get most things free because they are “important” ?

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9 hours ago, CGTLH said:

Showing for my cruise on Harmony in May. The normal free reservations still showing. Think in @WAAAYTOOO case is the normal show reservations aren't open yet. So only the paid version is getting listed.

Toss in some screen shots. Love the fact the VIP seating is still "First-come, first-served", no assigned seat.

See the same thing for my March Harmony cruise. Can make complimentary reservations or pay to have VIP seating.

While I can understand that some bean counter thinks it is a great idea, the price is just too much.  Why would anyone pay $79 for a meet and greet?  How did they come up with the price...I could see some people paying $20. 

I wonder how may new cruisers will now think they'll have to pay for shows and miss the free reservations.  Luckily for now, the free reservation is the obvious thing to click on the cruise planner but I wonder if that will change.  

As someone who has to drag her DH to the free show, I hope this experiment fails.

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Just RC exploring more ways to create a new revenue stream.  It will go away only if people don't buy it.  If people do... blame them.

Makes me wonder if they'll try to introduce a "Faster To The Fun" option like Carnival has.  Basically buy up to elite status in terms of boarding on day 1 and for tenders.  

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7 minutes ago, twangster said:

 

Makes me wonder if they'll try to introduce a "Faster To The Fun" option like Carnival has.  Basically buy up to elite status in terms of boarding on day 1 and for tenders.  

If the price is right, I would buy it.  Airlines and amusement parks have already been using this service.  Great marketing and loyalty tool for travel agents to "gift" to their clients as well.  

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12 minutes ago, twangster said:

Just RC exploring more ways to create a new revenue stream.  It will go away only if people don't buy it.  If people do... blame them.

Makes me wonder if they'll try to introduce a "Faster To The Fun" option like Carnival has.  Basically buy up to elite status in terms of boarding on day 1 and for tenders.  

Hush!  Don't give them anymore ideas...

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1 hour ago, melski94 said:

See the same thing for my March Harmony cruise. Can make complimentary reservations or pay to have VIP seating.

While I can understand that some bean counter thinks it is a great idea, the price is just too much.  Why would anyone pay $79 for a meet and greet?  How did they come up with the price...I could see some people paying $20. 

I wonder how may new cruisers will now think they'll have to pay for shows and miss the free reservations.  Luckily for now, the free reservation is the obvious thing to click on the cruise planner but I wonder if that will change.  

As someone who has to drag her DH to the free show, I hope this experiment fails.

As a first time cruiser I think this could be very confusing. The paid offering is listed as an “activity” in my cruise planner. My free option is entertainment. 

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3 hours ago, Sabrinaklai said:

Can you imagine if it became the norm?!  @melski94 you have a family of 6 right?  That would cost $474 to see a show?!  And for my family of 4, $316!  Praying this goes the way of Dynamic Dining.

I can't imagine paying that much for a family to attend...we don't even do specialty dining as a family.  We won't even pay for DH and myself.  Luckily for me, my kids aren't interested in the shows and they head to the kids/teen club at night.

I typically take complaints about the new upcharges and how it used to be to cruise with a grain of salt but we've only started cruising 4 years ago and I'm seeing more of it every year but this is starting to get ridiculous. Luckily for now, we can chose the free (not really free but at least included in price) options!

2 hours ago, PrincipalTinker said:

As a first time cruiser I think this could be very confusing. The paid offering is listed as an “activity” in my cruise planner. My free option is entertainment. 

Everything listed as an "activity" has a cost so stick to the entertainment side!

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6 hours ago, PrincipalTinker said:

As a first time cruiser I think this could be very confusing. The paid offering is listed as an “activity” in my cruise planner. My free option is entertainment. 

This is an excellent point.

At one time we were first time cruisers and I can certainly tell you...if I knew then what I know now...many things would have been 'better' from a customer experience point of view. We're D+ and I have to visually sift through the Cruise Planner stuff to get through the refuse to what we want. If I was a newbie, so to speak, it wouldn't be difficult to not click on something without knowing any better.

If someone has the money to throw off the back of the ship (aka VIP Mamma Mia!) please let me know...my wife and I are always looking to be adopted by exactly such fine folks.

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2 hours ago, Gears said:

 

If someone has the money to throw off the back of the ship (aka VIP Mamma Mia!) please let me know...my wife and I are always looking to be adopted by exactly such fine folks.

I  am assuming the passengers that are booking those Royal Loft Suites are the ones who are going to pay for the VIP experience.

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11 hours ago, Gears said:

If someone has the money to throw off the back of the ship (aka VIP Mamma Mia!) please let me know...my wife and I are always looking to be adopted by exactly such fine folks.

^^^^^^^^^^^:8_laughing:

Seems to me the only thing in pack of any use would be the seating! Cocktail you can get with drinks package, the meet and greet cast, we are on a ship pretty sure we would see them about and if we did we could get a photo with them then :1_grinning: Complete waste of money in my opinion

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13 minutes ago, Ray said:

^^^^^^^^^^^:8_laughing:

Seems to me the only thing in pack of any use would be the seating! Cocktail you can get with drinks package, the meet and greet cast, we are on a ship pretty sure we would see them about and if we did we could get a photo with them then :1_grinning: Complete waste of money in my opinion

+1 

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11 hours ago, jurrjurr said:

I  am assuming the passengers that are booking those Royal Loft Suites are the ones who are going to pay for the VIP experience.

They get priority seating anyway and if they can do a suite, I'm sure they can do a drink package.  Guess it depends how bad you want to meet and greet.

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2 hours ago, arebee said:

They get priority seating anyway and if they can do a suite, I'm sure they can do a drink package.  Guess it depends how bad you want to meet and greet.

Heck, staying in a Royal Loft they got the drink package and I'm sure the Genie can arrange a meet and greet. Plus the Genie is doing one up and getting seats reserved, not pointing to a VIP section.

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25 minutes ago, CGTLH said:

Heck, staying in a Royal Loft they got the drink package and I'm sure the Genie can arrange a meet and greet. Plus the Genie is doing one up and getting seats reserved, not pointing to a VIP section.

I thought the same.  

Plus $79pp seems steep to me.   Very little cost to implement, mostly profit.   What are they thinking?

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Not a case of what are they thinking! more a case of what they are hoping! that being people will be stupid enough to book this, which some people will just to say they have done it, as for some it's all about being or at least making on they are better than others.  

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15 minutes ago, Ray said:

Not a case of what are they thinking! more a case of what they are hoping! that being people will be stupid enough to book this, which some people will just to say they have done it, as for some it's all about being or at least making on they are better than others.  

I totally agree with this.  Most of us here are onto them but looking at other boards and posts, there are so many out there who have no idea.  And like @PrincipalTinker mentioned, it can be confusing for many first timers.

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