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Jillyalex

First cruise with Royal Caribbean .. Have some questions :) :)

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Good evening,

 

I have some questions as I have booked Back to Back cruises on the Oasis of the Seas..

 

Firstly, how does the Casino work? Do they have any programs like Carnival? After I accumulated 1500 points I got free drinks in the Casino.. Does RC have anything like that? Is there a Casino card that accumulates points and get future discounted ( or free ) cruises from the Casino? 

 

Secondly, we have booked a Grand Suite.. I have read a few things about Suite Perks.. is there any extra ones that aren't on the RC website? Any really good perks I should know about? 

 

Thirdly, being that this is my first RC cruise, it sounds like I don't get the Crown Anchor Society benefits for my first cruise.. is that true? 

 

Fourthly, being that we are doing Back to Back cruises and we couldn't get the same suite, do we have to completely pack take bags off the the ship,  and re register or? 

 

Lastly, could someone explain how the dining works now for the Oasis of the Seas.. sounds like dinners etc were in the MDR with set times, now it's dynamic dining? what exactly does that mean?

 

I'm sure I have lots more questions, but this is it for now... I'm the type of person who likes to do all sorts of research before the cruise so I don't waste time on the ship trying to figure stuff out :)

 

I really really appreciate any help in regards to my questions.. thanks so much

 

Cheers, Jill  :)

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Welcome, Jill, and congratulations on booking your first Royal Caribbean cruise.  I can't answer many of your questions as I haven't traveled in a suite on Royal--only Carnival and NCL, but I'll try my best to answer what I do know.

 

Given that you're on a back-to-back (B2B) cruise, you will need to pack, but you won't set your luggage out to be taken off the ship.  You will receive a letter detailing the B2B process, but essentially you and/or your steward will arrange to have your luggage moved from your first to your second room.  As for C&A benefits, you won't qualify being that this is your first cruise; however, you could contact the C&A rep and/or concierge regarding getting recognized on the second half of your B2B cruise.

 

I'm sure others will jump in to answer you other questions.

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Good evening,

 

I have some questions as I have booked Back to Back cruises on the Oasis of the Seas Dec 5 and Dec 12th.. 

 

Firstly, how does the Casino work? Do they have any programs like Carnival? After I accumulated 1500 points I got free drinks in the Casino.. Does RC have anything like that? Is there a Casino card that accumulates points and get future discounted ( or free ) cruises from the Casino? 

 

Secondly, we have booked a Grand Suite.. I have read a few things about Suite Perks.. is there any extra ones that aren't on the RC website? Any really good perks I should know about? 

 

Thirdly, being that this is my first RC cruise, it sounds like I don't get the Crown Anchor Society benefits for my first cruise.. is that true? 

 

Fourthly, being that we are doing Back to Back cruises and we couldn't get the same suite, do we have to completely pack take bags off the the ship,  and re register or? 

 

Lastly, could someone explain how the dining works now for the Oasis of the Seas.. sounds like dinners etc were in the MDR with set times, now it's dynamic dining? what exactly does that mean?

 

I'm sure I have lots more questions, but this is it for now... I'm the type of person who likes to do all sorts of research before the cruise so I don't waste time on the ship trying to figure stuff out :)

 

I really really appreciate any help in regards to my questions.. thanks so much

 

Cheers, Jill  :)

Welcome Jill!

 

It's true you do not get any Crown and Anchor benefits on your first cruise.  After your first cruise, you can sign up and become a member.  If you're doing back to back, talk to the loyalty ambassador about it and on your second cruise, they should be able to hook you up with gold status for that sailing.

 

Oasis of the Seas hasn't quite converted to dynamic dining yet.  They did the work in terms of construction but the actual Dynamic Dining program has not been rolled out there, but by the time your cruise comes around, that may change.  So you may have to wait and see how dining is on Oasis closer to your sailing.

 

For the casino, there is a program for those that spend enough money.  One of our board members, Stephanie, can explain it far better than I can.  I believe you have to spend a certain amount of money per day in the casino to qualify for it.

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Here are some of the perks the big suite guests receive that are NOT listed on the RCL website. In my wife's and my opinion, these are the reason we will book a doorbell. (we book our rooms on a number of factors, the largest of which is price, occasionally these doorbell rooms fall into a price we are willing to pay, we've been lucky to have doorbells in our cruising history, we REALLY look forward to a cruise with a doorbell!)

 

  The Doorbell--Outside your room will be a doorbell. My wife gets all giddy when the doorbell rings. The doorbells are the only outwardly noticeable sign that behind that door is a really big suite. Thus my wife and I have a nickname for these rooms, "a doorbell". We've never been "Ding Dong Ditched" in case you are wondering.

 

 

  The Room--The room will be really big! There will be plenty of room to put everything away that you have brought, including your empty suitcases! Note, the big suites on Oasis are are 15 -20% smaller than the same suites in the rest of the fleet, but, still not a problem. There will be plenty of counter space. Your clothes go into more of an armoire, not so much a closet. No shortage of hangers. The pillows on the bed will be extra cushy. The bathroom will be luxurious, probably larger than one you have at home. Certainly more marble and definitely more mirrors. The balcony (in my opinion) leaves a little to be desired; I think they are small. But I'm a balcony snob and not ashamed to admit it. Finally, the living room area is perfect for entertaining. I strongly suggest inviting some friends over. Often I look at our doorbell room and say "we should be sharing this".

 

  The Attendant--In a way your doorbell will be your room; but really the room belongs to the attendant and they are showcasing it for you. They will become a very good friend and somewhat of a confidant--feel free to use them this way; it's expected. They are NOT butlers, but are just one step below. They will have many, many years of experience of being an attendant and have seen it all. Usually they are responsible for only about 5 rooms for the week. They will spend a solid hour making your room up in the morning-- and it will be perfect. There is of course turn down service, mints on the pillows, and towel animals at night.

 

  The Frills-- Every night there will be some invitation to a party of one sort or another. Seemingly everyday a gift of food will be brought to the room. It just never ends. Your attendant is a big help in figuring the party details.

 

    The Concierge Lounge-- Here are the big undisclosed benefits! 1) You will become known on a first name basis with the Captain and all the officers. They will be open to ANY question you have. You'll meet them in the lounge and then be surprised just how often you bump into them in other areas of the ship. 2) Because of this and the relationship with your attendant; and I can't really put my finger on it; you will know what is EXACTLY going on aboard the ship. All the gossip. All the facts. You'll be "on the inside". As big a ship, as many passengers, and as many of the crew there is; come about Wednesday you will have a feeling of understanding it all. I've never had that feeling while in another type of room; even with all our cruising experience. The boat was always "too big a city to get a handle on it all". 3) The Concierge Person-- They sort out all the problems and inconveniences that may pop up for you. Inevitably there will be some. They have quite a bit of authority and they use it. So they can and will get you into the booked full excursion. Straighten out your dining times and restaurants so that you can see a show on time. They make sure your day in Labadee is awesome. Seldom is their answer "No". 4) The drinks in the Concierge Lounge are free from about 5-8. That means nearly ANY drink. It doesn't include bottle service or King Louis XIII but feel free to order what you desire and soak 'em up! Do not settle for the crappy champagne or lousy wine a server brings around. Order any mixed drink, shots, and in any amount. These drinks will also be made properly; not just thrown together in a hurry. Make sure you get a fresh one before you leave to go to dinner, or a show, or whatever. My opinion, this benefit alone should negate you having to buy a drink package. The servers in this area will also work at another bar, usually the disco. You might be surprised how little it costs to drink at the disco even though it is "after hours". You certainly won't be waiting as long as others to get a drink, that's for sure. 5) Getting to know the other frequenters of the Concierge Lounge is a great experience. We've made good friends there and have learned a lot from more experienced cruisers. People watching inside the lounge is never disappointing, for good and bad. Also, feel free to use the lounge at other times of day. It's a great quiet, comfy place on sea days. BTW, the furniture in the lounge is much, much more comfortable that the other ares of the ship. 

 

   The Main Dining Room-- There is a lot going on with this whole dining thing but the way it was in the past is this: the suite guests sit in their own area of the dining room. It's not sectioned off, it's just an area of tables. The servers for the suite guests, you guessed it; have been there a long time and earned there position. Your dining experience is more white tablecloth dining and less of the banquet hall everyone else experiences. Oh, BTW, the suite guests receive a different menu than everyone else. Yes the food is better, often made to order; but not exclusively. For example: on Lobster Night the lobster entre'e will be described as Lobster Dinner and part of the chef's recommendation. For other guests; they will have to find and order "Fisherman's Catch" to get lobster that night. Something else will be recommended by the chef that evening. Like I said this is the way it has been in the past and there are changes going on in the dining room. Certainly what the suit guests receive will be a cut above no matter what changes happen in the MDR.

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Hello "Newbie".. sorry not sure of your name..

 

Thanks for all your info regarding the suite.. sounds like RC makes you feel special in a suite.. Carnival did too, but not as many perks :) Will be interesting to see how the MDR works.. I like having the set dining time , just kinda gives you a little structure on a cruise.. can't really be bothered with waiting every night.. but guess we will see how it works .. 

 

The Concierge Lounge sounds like a nice area.. can you get beers there too? or just mixed drinks? Is there meals served there as well? 

 

The Suite itself sounds nice, like the extra service from the staff.. doorbell, well! that's kinda cool too!

 

Thanks again for all you info , I really appreciate it!

 

Jill 

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Welcome Jill!

 

It's true you do not get any Crown and Anchor benefits on your first cruise.  After your first cruise, you can sign up and become a member.  If you're doing back to back, talk to the loyalty ambassador about it and on your second cruise, they should be able to hook you up with gold status for that sailing.

 

Oasis of the Seas hasn't quite converted to dynamic dining yet.  They did the work in terms of construction but the actual Dynamic Dining program has not been rolled out there, but by the time your cruise comes around, that may change.  So you may have to wait and see how dining is on Oasis closer to your sailing.

 

For the casino, there is a program for those that spend enough money.  One of our board members, Stephanie, can explain it far better than I can.  I believe you have to spend a certain amount of money per day in the casino to qualify for it.

Your enrollment into the Crown and Anchor Society is a job for for the concierge in the Concierge Lounge! That's the kind of details they are experts at. If I were you Jill I would on the very first day introduce yourselves and explain your situation. 1) You'll get extra special attention to make sure everything is going OK ,   2) You never know what strings might be pulled for you for the first week regarding the C and A Society. Certainly you'll be a part for second week; without a doubt.

 

I would be very interested in a post regarding what the "high rollers" on a cruise receive. I would also be very interested in a post regarding "The Casino: All You Didn't Know" cause there is a lot going on there that many people may not realize. The Casino is an interesting place.

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Hello "Newbie".. sorry not sure of your name..

 

Thanks for all your info regarding the suite.. sounds like RC makes you feel special in a suite.. Carnival did too, but not as many perks :) Will be interesting to see how the MDR works.. I like having the set dining time , just kinda gives you a little structure on a cruise.. can't really be bothered with waiting every night.. but guess we will see how it works .. 

 

The Concierge Lounge sounds like a nice area.. can you get beers there too? or just mixed drinks? Is there meals served there as well? 

 

The Suite itself sounds nice, like the extra service from the staff.. doorbell, well! that's kinda cool too!

 

Thanks again for all you info , I really appreciate it!

 

Jill 

Absolutely beers are included in Concierge Lounge! Hor d'ourves are served there. Nice hor d'ourves especially made for the suite guests. Hor d' curves made by a chef who appreciates food.

 

The differences of the big suites are really noticeable by those who have cruised a lot in the past and can appreciate the details and differences.

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Great idea Matt!!.. I will talk to the Concierge in the Lounge! I'm sure all will be good :) I'm going to post what you said about the Casino.. I just won a cruise from Carnival all paid for exept taxes :) so I am curious if RC does things like that .. PS I also had free drinks! Can't get better than that! 

 

Cheers, Jill 

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Hey, Jill.  There are a number of posts here in the past couple of days regarding the Club Royale program so I won't expound here.  You can go and find them in the "messages" string....just know that just like the changes in the dining configuration, the casino VIP program is also undergoing significant changes.  All of these are "growing pains" relating to RCCL's success !  You are going to love the suite life.  It truly is exceptional and worth the extra money, if you have it.

 

I do have one suggestion to you, if you are interested in being a member of Club Royale - new or old.  I would suggest that you immediately go talk to the casino hostesses as soon as the casino opens the first night.  On the Oasis they are 2 absolutely lovely young women who are the best I have ever met on RCCL.  Of course, their names escape me at the moment.  We were on the Oasis in January.  I have no reason to believe that they have already changed.  Tell them that you want to be "rated" for membership in Club Royale first thing.  They will tell you what the qualifications are so that there is no misunderstanding about what minimum wagering level you must meet.  If you wait around for a couple of days then you will miss the opportunity to be rated right from the beginning.  The longer period of time they have to "watch" you - and the dealers and pit bosses WILL be watching you, if you are being rated - the better. 

 

I also have a little trick for you, if you are playing table games.  Let's say you bring $1000 to the table which will be converted into chips.  When you leave the table, they will "color you up" meaning they will take your small denominations and convert them into large denominations...this is partially for their benefit and partially for yours.  You will have fewer chips to carry away and they won't be letting all of their "change" walk away.  When you go to a new table, shove ALL of the chips (let's say you walked away from the first table with $800 of your original $1000) to the dealer for them to "color down"...give you smaller denominations.  One part of the "rating" system is how much money you bring to the table.  Another part is how much you wager per hand/roll/whatever.  So the more money you bring to the table, the better.  That does NOT mean that you have to spend it all !!!!!!!!   They are going to note how much money you bring to the table and then also how much money you leave with.  All of that is part of the rating system...along with how much you wager.  I have found, over the years, that my cash rebates have been significantly higher using  this method of cashing bigger sums onto and off of the table as opposed to bringing only a small amount of money to the table.  Of course, as with all things, you must be disciplined enough NOT to spend more than you would have with bringing smaller amounts to the table.  Just sayin' -

 

If you are a slots player, qualifying for Club Royale is WAY simpler.  You will be told by the Hostesses what the minimum "point" requirement is.  All you have to do is monitor how many points you are accumulating (the more money you wager, the more quickly your points will accumulate) and when you get to the magic number, you are in !  You can check your points either on the machine itself or at the casino cage/window.

 

So I ended up being long-winded after all.  No big surprise there...

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Another thing Jill; let's strike a bargain.

 

We all here can give a bunch of tips and pointers, opinions, experiences, or whatever.... if you, after your cruise, report back to us. Tell us how everything went. What you liked. What you didn't. And perhaps a little comparison/contrast to the experiences you've had aboard other lines. 

 

Seems fair..Deal?

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Not off the boat yet, but my experience with being a suite guest on Oasis this week (aqua suite) isn't nearly as nice as you described above.

 

I do have a picture of the official suite perks that are included (the paper was in our stateroom) if you would like for me to email it to you.

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CMcLarty- you should try to book a cruise after May in the new Star Suite class when they have a butler, included alcohol, included specialty restaurants and more then I think the suite life will be awesome... I was able to get the 2 bedroom aqua theater suite on Harmony and it is part of the Star class. The new perks look amazing you should take a look..

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Is the chefs table considered a specialty Restuarant ?

Yes and no.  It is a specialty dining experience; however, it is not included in any of the dining packages.  In addition, you are are small group of no more than about 16 and you are walked through a tasting menu that is paired with various wines.  You don't order off a menu like you do in the restaurants and there is only one seating.

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