Royal Caribbean Australia offering 72-hour cruise sale


Royal Caribbean Australia is offering guests a 72 hour sale that promises great rates on Australian cruises.

The 72-hour sale is valid on

  • Explorer of the Seas voyages departing 16-Dec-15, 17-Jan-16 & 28-Jan-16
  • Radiance of the Seas voyages departing 15-Dec-15 & 07-Jan-16 
  • Voyager of the Seas voyage departing 30-Jan-16 only

New bookings must be made within the 72 hour sale period of Tuesday 17 November 2015 10:00am AEDT – Friday 20 November 2015 09:59am AEDT.

This sale only applies to Interior (category Z) and Balcony (category X) staterooms.  72 Hour Sale is based on 'guarantee' staterooms (category Z, Y and X). The exact stateroom grade, number and location on the ship will be allocated at the discretion of Royal Caribbean International.


Royal Caribbean's Explorer of the Seas on her way to Australia


Royal Caribbean's Explorer of the Seas is on her way to Australia, where she will soon be the largest cruise ship to sail in that region.

Photo by Raul Soler

Explorer of the Seas departed Southampton, England today and will sail for 42 days through Europe and via Dubai, India and Asia before arriving in Perth, Australia on November 13.

Once Explorer of the Seas arrives in Perth, she will offer a 16-night itinerary around the southern half of Australia and New Zealand, before arriving at her new homeport of Sydney on November 28.

On that same day, sister ship Voyager of the Seas will be in Sydney harbor as well and both ships will be present to meet for what is sure to be a great photo opportunity.

Explorer of the Seas arrives in Australia just months after receiving a multimillion dolar makeover back in April.  She features a number of new additions and improvements including

  • FlowRider surf simulator
  • New restaurants
    • Chops Grille
    • Giovanni's Table
    • Izumi
  • two new bars
  • Virtual balcony staterooms
  • Panoramic staterooms
  • Complete refresh of all public spaces and staterooms

Royal Caribbean launches new contest in Australia to give away a free cruise on Legend of the Seas


Royal Caribbean is celebrating the arrival of Legend of the Seas to Australia with a new contest, where guests can enter to win a 2-night getaway cruise on Legend of the Seas.

The grand prize is a 2 night sampler cruise for two people in a Balcony stateroom on Legend of the Seas departing Brisbane on 8 December 2015.

Part of the contest asks entrants in 25 words or less, to nominate a legend in their life and tell Royal Caribbean what makes them legendary.

The contest is only open to Australian residents aged 18 years or over. Submissions are open beginning Wednesday 23 September 2015 and closes at 11:59PM AEST on Sunday 11 October 2015.

Entrants are limited to one (1) per person in accordance with the entry requirements. 

Five lucky winners will be selected and the winner's names will be posted to the Royal Caribbean Australia and New Zealand Facebook Page at

Royal Caribbean considering Botany Bay as new Australia homeport


Royal Caribbean is poised to move its home port in Australia from Sydney Harbor to Port Botany as a way to get around the cruise ship overcrowding issue in Sydney.

Photo by ebroh

Cruise Critic reports that Royal Caribbean regional vice president Asia Pacific, Gavin Smith, believes Port Botany was "more commercially confident" of a solution because of a drop in traffic at Port Botany.

Syndey Harbor has been the homeport for Royal Caribbean ships but the fact there is only one berth that can handle mega-sized cruise ships means Royal Caribbean needs more options.  

If Port Botany was selected as homeport, Royal Caribbean ships would leave Port Botany at 4pm and then sail into Sydney Harbor at around 6pm to give a great view of the city before heading out to sea.

Earlier this month Royal Caribbean had expressed interest in having ships leave from Wollongong, but according to Smith it does not make sense to split the ships across multiple ports.  

Royal Caribbean tests port stop in Wollongong as possible homeport alternative to Sydney


Royal Caribbean is testing out a new homeport in Australia at Wollogong's Port Kembla Harbour that could replace Sydney.

Photo by Sap

Radiance of the Seas will make a port stop here in October 2016 as part of a 7-night East Australian Coast and Tasmania cruise.

Royal Caribbean Regional Vice President Gavin Smith says Radiance of the Seas' stop here is the first step in a possible new partnership between the cruise line and the port, "I’m thrilled to announce we will be bringing one of the largest and most feature-packed mega liners in Australian waters to the South Coast of NSW, when Port Kembla becomes the newest destination for Radiance of the Seas."

"Including Port Kembla on our itineraries will provide our guests the opportunity to sample all that Wollongong and the South Coast has to offer. At the same time, it will give us the chance to investigate Port Kembla as an alternative home port, as an overflow to congestion in Sydney Harbour."

Royal Caribbean is particularly interested in Wollongong as an alternative home port because of the congestion problem in Sydney harbor.

Royal Caribbean opens bookings for Ovation of the Seas Australia and New Zealand cruises


Royal Caribbean opened bookings for its third Quantum-class cruise ship, Ovation of the Seas today.  Guests can now book cruises for the ship's maiden season in Australia and New Zealand.

Ovation of the Seas will arrive in Australia on December 6, 2016 when she docks in Perth.  Ovation of the Seas will be the largest cruise ship to ever be homeported in Australia.

After arriving in Australia, Ovation of the Seas will visit Adelaide and Hobart, before arriving in Sydney to begin her official Australian season.

Ovation of the Seas will offer four sailings from Sydney during her summer season starting from December 15, 2016, including:

  • A 15-night New Zealand cruise beginning with an overnight in Sydney on December 15, 2016 followed by calls at Hobart, the Milford Sounds region, Dunedin, Wellington, Picton, Tauranga and Auckland.
  • A 10-night New Year cruise around New Zealand departing December 30, 2016, with calls at the Milford Sound region, Dunedin, Wellington, Napier and Picton.
  • A 14-night cruise during the January school holidays with visits to Bay of Islands, Tauranga, Auckland, Wellington, Picton, Dunedin, and the Milford Sounds region.
  • Ovation of the Seas leaves Australia on January 23, 2017 with a 14-night Sydney to Singapore cruise visiting Brisbane, Darwin and Kuala Lumpur (Port Klang).

Royal Caribbean commercial director for Royal Caribbean Australia & South East Asia, Sea Treacy, commented on the arrival of Ovation down under, "At USD$1 billion, Ovation of the Seas represents the single largest investment in Australia and New Zealand cruising by any cruise line. This ship truly ignites the imagination about what is possible on a cruise holiday – from skydiving in the middle of the ocean, robot bartenders, to North Star, an observation capsule that transports you more than 90 metres above the sea providing stunning 360 degree views."

"Being the imaginative and adventure-loving nation that we are, it is not surprising that over 20,000 Aussies have pre-registered their interest since we first announced her local deployment. Ovation of the Seas’ first season will be historic and we can’t wait for Australians to experience the world’s most advanced ship right on our doorstep," Treacy said.

"In her first season alone, Ovation of the Seas is projected to inject more than $20million into the Australian economy with 14 total calls across the country, and almost 30,000 guests are expected to experience the new generation of cruise ship. Some of the other delights her guests can look forward to include bumper cars, a circus school, spectacular shows in the custom-built Two70 entertainment venue, 18 different dining options including Jamie’s Italian by Jamie Oliver, Broadway shows and high speed internet."

Royal Caribbean extends Explorer of the Seas' Australia cruise season


Royal Caribbean has added two new cruises to the end of Explorer of the Seas' season in Australia, keeping the ship down under for a little bit longer.

In April 2016, guests can choose from a 12-night New Zealand itinerary and a 24-night transpacific voyage from Sydney to Seattle.

Passengers who were booked on the repositioning cruise to Alaska have been offered, "a range of alternative itineraries to rebook" according to Cruise Critic.

The New Zealand cruise will make stops at Picton, Wellington, Napier, Tauranga and Auckland.

The 24-night transpacific cruise will make stops at Nomea, Vanuatu's Mystery Island and Vila, Suva, Honolulu and Lahaina before ending in Seattle, Washington.

Ovation of the Seas will cruise to Australia in winter 2016-2017


Royal Caribbean announced that Ovation of the Seas, the third Quantum-class cruise ship, will be homeported in Sydney, Australia for the winter of 2016-2017.

When she arrives, Ovation of the Seas will become the largest cruise ship to ever sail out of Australia and will also be the most technologically advanced ship in the region.

Ovation of the Seas will be the fifth ship in the Royal Caribbean Australian fleet for winter 2016-17, joining four other Royal Caribbean ships:Voyager of the Seas, Explorer of the Seas and Radiance of the Seas in Sydney and Legend of the Seas in Brisbane.

Additional details for the Royal Caribbean’s winter 2016-17 season will be revealed at the end of April.

“Royal Caribbean has been breaking the boundaries in Australian cruising since we arrived in 2007 but today, we have completely changed the face of the cruise industry, making the single largest investment in Australia by any cruise line,” said Gavin Smith, regional vice president, Royal Caribbean, Asia Pacific. “Ovation of the Seas will completely redefine the idea of cruising in Australia, taking the industry to the next level by offering a host of incredible never-before-seen features and technologies. This demonstrates our belief in, and long term commitment to, the Australian cruising market.”

Royal Caribbean failing to attract Chinese cruisers in Australia yet


Royal Caribbean Regional Vice President, Asia Pacific, met with Australian officials to discuss the cruise market and attracting more Chinese tourists to Australian cruises was the first question raised.

Smith indicated despite the fact Royal Caribbean already serves over 300,000 Chinese cruise passengers each year, getting the Chinese market to try cruises out of Australia remains a hurdle.

“We haven’t got a proposition in the Chinese market for cruising from Australia. I can’t say it is in our short-term plan,” says Smith.

“(But) We stand better placed than anybody to cater to that market because of our activity in that market already, but we haven’t really created a product.”

Smith says the problem for cruising from Australia for the Chinese market is the lack of port density. “The market wants a port every day and unfortunately with the distance we struggle to do a port every day. And that is one of the limitations at the moment for that market. When they better understand cruising and they can relax then they will probably take some of our longer itineraries.”

Royal Caribbean increases brand marketing in Australia to differentiate itself


The cruise business in Australia is booming but Royal Caribbean's research shows that customers down under are most concerned about price and don't really care who they sail with.  This is has lead Royal Caribbean to invest more in brand marketing to separate itself from the competition.

Royal Caribbean Commercial Director Sean Treacy told Mumbrella the research showed people did not look at brand at all.

"What was really surprising, and frankly a little damaging to our egos, was that people who are new to cruising can’t tell one cruise brand from another,” he said. “They are merely comparing one big white ship with another and they find it difficult to tell the difference between the likes of us, Princess Cruises and most surprising, P&O."

Royal Caribbean took the research as a "wake up call" to how they were marketing in the Australia market and as a result will be ramping up its brand marketing to increase awareness.

Part of that initiative is increasing its advertising reach beyond print and search and to start local television ads.  The new campaign is called, "It's Royal Caribbean Time".

Royal Caribbean will also increase its social media presence and will run a competition on Facebook offering 50 places on a one-night cruise in December.