Royal Caribbean's Legend of the Seas to go to Australia in 2015-2016


Royal Caribbean will send Legend of the Seas to Brisbane, Australia for five months in 2015 through 2016.

Legend of the Seas will offer cruises throughout Southeast Asia.  She will start out in Singapore in summer season and then move to Brisbane for the winter.

Legend of the Seas will join Mariner of the Seas, Voyager of the Seas and Radiance of the Seas while in Australia.  

​The move is aimed at addressing the growing demand for cruises in the Australian cruise market.  This will be part of the largest deployment ever for Royal Caribbean to Australia.

Legend of the Seas 2015-2016 Southeast Asia and Australia cruises will go on sale May 21, 2014.

Royal Caribbean announces Australia and South Pacific cruises for 2015-2016


Royal Caribbean announced today it will send Explorer of the Seas, Voyager of the Seas and Radiance of the Seas to Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific for the 2015-2016 winter season.

Royal Caribbean’s winter 2015-16 Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific season will open for reservations on April 29, 2014.

We had reported earlier Royal Caribbean was sending Explorer of the Seas to Australia and Royal Caribbean's announcement today solidified those plans.

From November 2015 through April 2016, Explorer of the Seas will primarily sail 11- and 14-night New Zealand cruises, with up to seven ports of call in New Zealand. Explorer of the Seas also will offer three- and four-night cruises in November 2015 and in February and March 2016.

Voyager of the Seas will sail eight- to 12-night South Pacific and Fiji cruises, all round-trip from Sydney.  Voyager of the Seas also will sail a 13-night South Pacific and New Zealand cruise on November 5, 2015, which will call at Bay of Islands and Auckland in New Zealand, as well as a seven-night Tasmania cruise on November 28, which will feature an overnight at Hobart, as well as call at Melbourne, Australia. 

Radiance of the Seas will offer a variety of itineraries to the South Pacific and Fiji, New Zealand, and throughout Australia. Guests can choose eight- to 14-night South Pacific itineraries from December 2015 through January 2016, or circumnavigate Australia in November 2015 and from late-February through March, 2016 – each comprising a 16-night New Zealand and southern Australia sailing from Sydney to Perth (Fremantle), followed by a 16-night northern Australia and Bali cruise back to Sydney. Radiance of the Seas also will sail four- to seven-night Tasmania cruises, departing December 11, 2015, and February 18 and March 28, 2016, and a 10-night Queensland cruise, departing February 8, 2016. 

If you enjoy re-positioning cruises, Explorer of the Seas will take guests on a 10-night Singapore to Perth itinerary, departing November 3, 2015, followed by a 16-night southern Australia and New Zealand cruise that arrives in Sydney on Nov. 29 for an overnight stay. The ship reverses these itineraries at the end of the season, departing from Sydney on April 12 and from Perth (Fremantle) to Singapore in late April.

Voyager of the Seas also will reposition between Singapore and Sydney on 14-night northern Australia itineraries on October 22, 2015, and April 16, 2016, with the former featuring an overnight in Singapore.

Radiance of the Seas’ trans-Pacific crossing will combine Hawaii with Australia or Canada on a 10-night Hawaii cruise from Vancouver, B.C. and subsequent 18-night, trans-Pacific itinerary to Sydney, departing September 11 and 21, 2015, respectively. A return trans-Pacific cruise will sail from Sydney to Hawaii on April 3, 2016, followed by an 11-night Vancouver-bound sailing on April 20. 

Royal Caribbean to send Explorer of the Seas to Australia to replace Rhapsody of the Seas in 2015


Royal Caribbean will send Explorer of the Seas to Australia for the 2015-2016 cruise season to compliment sister ship Voyager of the Seas.

Explorer of the Seas will replace Rhapsody of the Seas, which has been a fixture in Australia since 2007.

Explorer of the Seas, a Voyager class cruise ship, was previously announced to be going to Europe for April through September 2015 and will begin offering cruises in Australia starting in November 2015.

Royal Caribbean made the announcement in an email sent to members of its Crown & Anchor loyalty program.

Radiance of the Seas will also return to the region again for the 2015-16 season, the newsletter reveals.

For Rhapsody of the Seas, 2014/2015 will be its last season down under.

Royal Caribbean’s Australasian itineraries for 2015/16 will go on sale at the end of the month.

Voyager of the Seas returns to Sydney, Australia


Royal Caribbean's Voyager of the Seas, the largest cruise ship in Australia, has returned to Sydney today to begin her second season there.

Voyager of the Seas will offer a two-night "sampler" cruise before embarking on a 14-day cruise to the Pacific Islands and New Zealand before returning to Sydney.

Luke Aerowsmith, Voyager of the Seas' cruise director, says the ship's offerings are catered towards the Australian passengers' tastes.

"We have fewer deck chairs out on deck for Australians," he said. "Brits like to spend all day lying in the sun but Australians don't. But they do like to have a barbecue out on the deck so we'll do that.

Voyager of the Seas is based in China during the northern summer and travelled to Sydney via Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Darwin and Brisbane.

Adam Armstrong, Royal Caribbean's commercial director for Asia-Pacific, says the company would like to bring more big ships to Australia, but the country's infrastructure lags behind the needs of modern megaliners.

"We really need to be catering for more of these big ships," Armstrong said. "Rather than them being an anomaly, making one call every two weeks as it is with this ship, we want the facilities in Sydney to be capable of taking big ships every day of the week, every year. So there is a bit of catch-up to be done."

Royal Caribbean: World wants to come to Australia


Royal Caribbean Vice President of Commercial and New Business Development John Tercek says the world wants to come to Australia when he spoke at the Cruise Down Under conference in Cairns last week.

Tercek said Australia has a great international reputation and image and is going to see a lot more cruise traffic.

Royal Caribbean already has five ships operating in Australia between sister company Celebrity Cruises and itself.  

Tercek says the big challenege for the Australian cruise market is the expensive air fare to Australia along with the long distances the ships must travel.  Because of these distances, Australian cruises are unique in that most cruises are longer than seven nights.

Other challenges Tercek idenitifed are the odd comibination of days due to the fact the Sydney only has one cruise terminal to handle the larger cruise ships due to the Harbour Bridge being too low for Royal Caribbean's ships.

"We are growing here, we"ve been growing here, we hope to go on growing here, but the issues are there," he said.
However, Tercek described on-going discussions about improved infrastructure are "promising."
He said Royal Caribbean has two Voyager-class ships sailing in China and hopes to add more ships as that market grows.
"As it does grow, it is not that far to come down here," Tercek told Cruise Down Under delegates.

Royal Caribbean among cruise lines pushing for Australian Navy to leave Garden Island


The cruise business in Australia is booming and things could get even better if the Royal Australian Navy goes ahead with plans to leave Sydney's Garden Island.

Doing so would increase the berthing capacity for the city, which is characterized as "desperately needed".  Among those calling for the Navy to leave is Royal Caribbean's Regional Vice President for Australia, Gavin Smith.

"None of our ships will fit under the Harbour Bridge," said the line's regional vice president Gavin Smith.

“Modern cruise ships are too big to do so. To continue to grow we need certainty, in particular berthing certainty. Asian ports have provided this in Singapore, Hong Kong and Shanghai with brand new dedicated cruise terminals. More and more cruise ships are visiting these ports as a consequence.

“Sydney, as the gateway to the Australian cruise industry, needs to respond to this competition within our region. This will ensure that the other cruise destinations in Australia and New Zealand can share in the economic growth of the local industry.”

Sydney's current cruise terminal is over 50 years old.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced on Tuesday that a taskforce would be set up to consider moving some or all of the navy fleet to Queensland.

Royal Caribbean survey shows Australians want to get away for the Christmas holiday


Royal Caribbean conducted a survey among residents of Australia and found two thirds of the respondents said they believed that getting away from it all would make Christmas better and 50% said that a getaway was the number one thing that would make school holidays better.

This, of course, plays right into what Royal Caribbean can offer these people looking for an escape by touting December cruises. Royal Caribbean says 40% of Australians said that they would most like to go on a cruise with their family and are happy for the family to come along.

Among the reasons Australians are looking to get away were concerns over money and household chores are the primary reasons they did not enjoy being at home for the holiday.

Royal Caribbean Cruises Australasia Commercial Director Adam Armstrong said, “A cruise is a great value option at Christmas time with prices including meals, accommodation and lots of entertainment, and of course there’s no arguing over who’s going to do the washing up!”

He added that it is hard not to get into the holiday spirit with all the special activities on board a Royal Caribbean cruise at Christmas time, with the season coming to life with carol singing, Christmas parties, visits from Santa, holiday-inspired menus and Christmas treats such as gingerbread houses built by talented onboard pastry chefs.

Three Royal Caribbean ships will offer cruises out of Australia during the Christmas holiday, which include Radiance of the Seas, Voyager of the Seas and Rhapsody of the Seas.

Royal Caribbean named best cruise line in Australia


The 2013 AFTA National Travel Industry Awards winners were announced and Royal Caribbean took home the honor for "Best Cruise Operator – Australian Based Operation".

Australian Federation of Travel Agents CEO Jayson Westbury said Royal Caribbean was bringing "big, yummy, affordable" ships to Australia.

The NTIA is an annual event in Australia, where leaders in the travel field are recognized by members of the The Australian Federation of Travel Agents.

Royal Caribbean also won an award in last year's event for, "Best Cruise Operator - International Based Operation".

Kristen Chenoweth performs at Sydney Opera House for Royal Caribbean guests


Royal Caribbean Quantum of the Seas godmother Kristen Chenoweth performed on Monday night at the Sydney Opera House for Royal Caribbean and guests.

''It was a dream come true to perform the special material that I created just for my Australian tour last night at Sydney's Opera House and it was a thrill to have special guests of Royal Caribbean in the audience," Chenoweth said.

Chenoweth recently co-hosted the grand reveal of Quantum of the Seas in New York and has become associated with Royal Caribbean's newest cruise ship.

"I am so excited to be godmother of Quantum of the Seas and hope to see lots of my Aussie fans on board when she launches in the US next year," Chenoweth said.

Chenoweth took time to pose with Royal Caribbean commercial director for Australia, Adam Armstrong, backstage.

Royal Caribbean announces biggest Australian cruise season ever


Royal Caribbean announced its 2014-15 Australasian program, which happens to be its biggest to date.  Part of the plans call for Voyager of the Seas to undergo a multi-million dollar refurbishment before the new cruise season kicks off.

Royal Caribbean will send Voyager of the Seas along with Radiance of the Seas for a third consecutive summer to Australia.

Royal Caribbean commercial director Adam Armstrong indicated that over 140,000 passengers from over 100 countries will sail with Royal Caribbean during this time frame.

“We began with the revitalisations of Radiance of the Seas and Rhapsody of the Seas in 2011-12, and now we’ve come full circle as Voyager of the Seas will undergo a bow-to-stern refurbishment to offer even more amazing features,” he said.

Royal Caribbean will announce more details later this year, but Armstrong hinted the revitslisation will see Voyager of the Seas fitted with many of the features found on the cruise line’s newest Oasis Class ships.

Radiance and Rhapsody will arrive in Sydney in October 2014 for the season’s start with Voyager to join them in December 2014.

The program features 55 cruises from two to 18 nights in length, calling at 37 ports across Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific before the season’s end in April 2015.