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Royal Caribbean releases new Europe summer 2022 cruises to book

In:
03Dec2020

Royal Caribbean has released its Europe 2022 cruises, which are available to book now.

According to Royal Caribbean these new sailings are available for Crown & Anchor members on December 3, 2020, and the general public on December 4, 2020.

Guests can experience culture-rich adventures on board ships new to the Mediterranean and Northern Europe with Brilliance of the Seas sailing roundtrip from Venice, Italy and Voyager of the Seas launching her first season in the Baltic Sea – the first in the Voyager Class to do so. A game-changing lineup of guest favorites, Anthem, Allure and Odyssey of the Seas – Royal Caribbean’s second Quantum Ultra Class ship debuting in 2021 – will return to their respective homeports in Southampton, England; Barcelona and Rome to create a summer of memory-making in Europe’s most sought-after destinations.     

New Europe 2022 cruises are available to book between April and October 2022, and so far we have spotted cruises on seven different Royal Caribbean ships to book.

Here is a breakdown of where the ships will be sailing from:

Anthem of the Seas will sail from Southampton, UK and offer cruises of various lengths to destinations in Western Europe.

Allure of the Seas will sail from Rome to offer Mediterranean cruises.

Odyssey of the Seas will return to Europe to offer cruises from Rome.

Brilliance of the Seas will also sail from Rome to offer Italy and Adriatic cruises, as well as Greece and Croatia sailings.

Vision of the Seas will sail from Barcelona and offer cruises to France and Italy, as well as Western Mediterranean cruises.

Jewel of the Seas will offer open-jaw sailings between Athens, Greece and Tarragona, Spain and sail longer cruises to Italy, Turkey and Greece. She will also offer British Isle cruises from Amsterdam.  Another unique sailing will be 12-night Arctic Circle cruises from Amsterdam that sail up the coast of Norway.

Voyager of the Seas will sail from Copenhagen, Demark and offer Scandinavia & Russia cruises.

You can view the full list of sailings for each ship:

This is the third 2022 deployment released so far, as Royal Caribbean released Alaska 2022 cruises and longer Caribbean 2022 cruises in November.

The remainder of the 2022-2023 deployment is marked as "coming soon" with no date range of when to expect it.

Planning on booking a  2022 cruise? These stories will help:

European Union publishes recommendations for cruise ships once cruises resume

In:
03Jul2020

The European Union released 49 pages of general guidance for cruise ships that could be applied once cruise lines resume cruises following the COVID-19 pandemic.

The guidance covers a variety of measures that seek to reduce the risk for introduction of COVID-19 onto the ship, transmission during cruise ship voyage, embarkation and disembarkation, and further provides options for preparedness to respond to potential COVID-19 cases among crew and guests.

It is important to note these recommendations by the European Union have not been approved or accepted by Royal Caribbean. These measures are a look at what policies are being proposed by health organizations.

Interestingly, 22 different Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. employees provided input in the formation of this policy, including a number of Senior Vice Presidents.

While there is a lot in this document, here are the major highlights.

Short sailings to start

This end-to-end plan also notes that it recommends cruise lines take a "gradual approach" to resuming cruise ship sailings.

Specifically, it recommends sailings between 3 to 7 nights in duration, and perhaps limit the number of port visits in the itinerary.

In addition, each country that is visited on a cruise should be evaluated for their capacity to accept possible or confirmed COVID-19 cases from cruise ships.

Forced social distancing

In order to make social distancing rules effective, the EU recommends reducing the number of guests and crew onboard.

Limiting the amount of people onboard allows measures related to physical distancing on board ships can be maintained, and that temporary isolation and quarantine of passengers and crew can take place individually in cabins. 

Physical distancing of at least 1.5 metres (5 feet) should be maintained at waiting areas and during boarding at transport stations, by adopting special markings and controlled entry measures.

A number of hygiene measures are recommended to be employed onboard: hand washing with soap and water or hand hygiene with alcohol based hand rub solution (containing at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol), respiratory (coughing and sneezing) etiquette, disposal of used tissues, physical distancing (including the elimination of handshaking), use of face masks, avoiding touching the nose, eyes and mouth without previously washing hands (38) etc.;

Masks

The word "mask" appears 100 times in the document, and it encompasses using masks while onboard.

When physical distancing cannot be maintained, the use of face masks should be required.

Crew members are recommended to practice physical distancing and wear face masks.

If a passenger does not arrive with their own face mask, face masks could be made available for passengers at the terminal.

The document also recommends wearing masks in the following areas:

  • Interacting with other guests when closer than 5 feet apart
  • Embarkation
  • On buses
  • Walking/passing in narrow corridors on board
  • Casinos
  • Elevators
  • Excursions (countries that have rules about requiring them)
  • Visiting the medical facility on board

No indoor swimming pools

Indoor swimming pools are not recommended, but indoor pools that can be converted as outdoor pools (by lifting/removing roofs or walls) could be allowed.

Bathers should be strongly advised to shower before entering the pools. The cruise ship should provide all necessary items for showering (e.g. soap, shower gel, etc.).

Sunbeds, chairs and lounge chairs should be positioned so that they are at least 5 feet apart from each other.

In addition, the maximum number of guests in a pool should be limited, including in hot tubs.

Outbreak plan

Each cruise ship operating in Europe must have a ship contingency plan/outbreak management plan.

The EU document outlines 11 parts to this plan, including:

  • Monitoring of epidemiological situation, rules and restrictions worldwide
  • Written contingency plan/outbreak management plan for COVID-19 
  • Arrangements for medical treatment and ambulance services
  • Arrangements for repatriation
  • Arrangements for quarantine of close contacts
  • Arrangements for isolation of asymptomatic/ pre-symptomatic travelers 
  • Adequate testing capacity
  • Crew training
  • Immediate reporting to the next port of call of any possible case
  • Estimation of maximum number of passengers and crew on board cruise ships
  • Focused inspection on COVID-19 prevention and control for resuming cruise ship voyages by EU HEALTHY GATEWAYS

Prohibiting higher risk guests

Not surprisingly, there are recommendations to prevent anyone who may be at a higher risk of having contracted COVID-19 from going on a cruise ship in the first place.

These measures mirror some of the policies that went into effect before Royal Caribbean shut down operations in March.

Any person experiencing symptoms compatible with COVID-19, or if identified, anyone who has been in contact during the last 14 days with a confirmed case of COVID-19, or anyone who is tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 by RT-PCR would not be accepted on board cruise ships.

Passengers in high risk groups including people over 65 years of age or people of any age with underlying medical conditions (chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, respiratory diseases and immunocompromised individuals) should be advised to visit a doctor for pre-travel medical consultation to assess if they are fit to travel.

Activities and services on board cruise ships could be organized according to age group, so that older individuals are separated from other age groups. 

No self-service buffet

In addition to a number of protocols recommended for keeping the ship clean, the recommendation is for only designated crew members be allowed to serve food.

Crew serving food should wear face masks & disposable gloves.

Under no circumstances should crew or passengers who will be served food use any commonly shared utensils or other items. These should be removed from the service so that only a designated crew can distribute them.

Self-service of dispensed items, plates, cutlery, utensils by passengers or crew should not be allowed. Food handlers should serve any dispensed items (for example water, coffee, juice etc.). 

Room service is recommended in order to avoid overcrowding in restaurants and other food service areas.

Royal Caribbean pushes back China sailings return & cancels Denmark cruises

In:
Category: 
11Jun2020

Royal Caribbean announced more cruise cancellations caused by the current state of world health, as well as new regulations imposed by Denmark.

Instead of resuming China sailings in the beginning of July, Royal Caribbean has extended its cancellations through July 12, 2020 for Quantum of the Seas and Spectrum of the Seas, as well as Voyager of the Seas sailings through September 2020.

The cruise line had cancelled all of its China sailings through the end of June during the last round of cancellations, but now the resumption of sailings in China may not begin until at least July 12.

Additionally, Copenhagen, Denmark has restricted all non-essential travel through August 31, 2020. As a result, the following sailings have been cancelled:

  • Brilliance of the Seas departing on August 21, 2020
  • Jewel of the Seas departing August 8 - 22, 2020

We continue to monitor the progress and evolution of the current environment as we begin to balance continued safety with a gradual return to normalcy. At the forefront, the health and well-being of our guests and crew, as well as the communities we visit, fuel the decisions we make as a corporation. As we work to prepare our ships for their operational return, extensive planning and research have proven essential.

Guests booked on any of the affected sailings have the following choices for compensation.

125% Future Cruise Credit to re-book a new cruise by December 31, 2021 for sailings departing on or before April 30th, 2022. This will automatically be issued by July 24th, 2020 via email if no action is taken.

Taxes and fees, as well as any pre-purchased amenities or onboard packages will be automatically refunded to the original form of payment within 45 days from the cancellation date.

Lift and Shift: If you prefer to move your cancelled booking to a 2021 sailing, you can take advantage of Royal Caribbean's new policy where the cruise line will price protect the original pricing and/or promotion on the same itinerary, length, product, and stateroom category as your original sailing within 4 weeks (before or after) of the original sail date in 2021.

You will need to contact your travel agent by June 25th to take advantage of this option.

100% Refund: if you prefer a full refund, you have until December 31, 2020 to request a refund and deactivate your certificate. You can expect to receive your refund 45 days after you submit your refund request.

Will there be cruises to Europe in 2020?

In:
26Mar2020

Each year, Royal Caribbean sends a number of ships to Europe for the summer, but this year's cruise season is in question given the growing coronavirus pandemic.

Royal Caribbean has cancelled all of its global sailings through mid-May, and this is the time of year when traditionally cruise ships make the transatlantic crossing to begin the European cruise season.

Warnings against travel

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control has classified Europe as an area with “widespread ongoing transmission” of COVID-19 and has given it a Level 3 Warning, asking citizens to avoid nonessential travel. That is the same warning level applied to China, South Korea and Iran.

On top of that, the State Department has restricted all but United States citizens and legal permanent residents from returning from Europe. And countries have instituted lockdowns to prevent the spread of the virus.

European lockdown

Over in Europe, Spain and Italy are two countries where Royal Caribbean offers a great many sailings, and Spain has over 40,000 and Italy almost 70,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19.

Moreover, the European Union has banned nonessential travel from elsewhere in the world for 30 days. In addition, there are select European countries that have added new rules to prohibit cruise ship arrivals for at least 30 days.

  • Spain has closed all its borders for entry from March 23 for 30 days.
  • Italy is under a countrywide lockdown and cruise ships are prohibited from visiting.
  • The Netherlands has closed its cruise ports to cruise passengers by river or ocean, which applies to the busy port of Amsterdam.
  • All of Denmark's cruise ports are closed to non-resident foreigners at least April 13, 2020.
  • Sweden has a temporary ban on travel to the country from March 19 for up to 30 days.
  • The United Kingdom appears to have no restrictions related to cruise ships at this time.

The waiting game

Royal Caribbean has not commented on the prospects of the 2020 cruise season, so both the cruise line and guests are relegated to waiting things out and seeing what conditions are like closer to the resumption of sailings in May.

Allure of the Seas is already in Europe, as she managed to conduct her transatlantic crossing prior to the initial shutdown. Jewel of the Seas is in the Middle East.

The rest of the fleet is either somewhere off the coast of the United States, Caribbean or Australia.

It appears even a partial cruise season in Europe is better than no cruise season in Europe, so no official word on plans has been made yet.

Royal Caribbean releases 2021 Europe sailings

In:
Category: 
13Nov2019

Royal Caribbean released new information about summer 2021 European cruises.

Anthem of the Seas and Harmony of the Seas will return to Southampton and Barcelona respectively, while the brand-new Odyssey of the Seas, Royal Caribbean’s second Quantum Ultra class ship, will sail through Turkey and Greece.

All itineraries are available to book as of today with the exception of Odyssey of the Seas and Adventure of the Seas which will be open to book the week of December 9.

Anthem of the Seas will be the first Quantum-class ship to take guests to ports in Norway including Stavarnger, Kristiansand and Geiranger. Other new stops for Anthem include Copenhagen and Aarhus, Denmark and Bordeaux, France. Select sailings include late nights in Paris, France and overnights in Rotterdam, Netherlands and Lisbon, Portugal. 

Anthem of the Seas 2021 Europe Itineraries

Harmony of the Seas will be sailing 7-night itineraries through the Western Mediterranean from Barcelona. For those wishing to start and end their trip in Italy, round-trip sailings from Rome are also available.

Harmony of the Seas 2021 Europe Itineraries

Odyssey of the Seas, set to debut in November 2020, will be Royal Caribbean’s first Quantum Ultra Class ship to visit the spectacular shores of both Turkey and Greece on numerous itineraries. Odyssey will open for bookings the week of Dec. 9, 2019.

Vision of the Seas will continue to offer 12-night Mediterranean itineraries from Barcelona sailing the Greek Isles and making stops in Kotor, Motenegro; Nice, France; Rome, Florence/Pisa, Italy and include an overnight in Venice, Italy and late nights in Split, Croatia.

Vision of the Seas 2021 Europe Itineraries

Select Jewel of the Seas sailings from her homeport of Amsterdam to the British Isles and Baltics will include overnights in Edinburgh (S. Queensferry), Scotland and in St. Petersburg, Russia; as well as late-nights in Liverpool, England – marking the first time a Radiance class ship calls to the city – and Bordeaux, France.

Jewel of the Seas will end the summer homeported in Barcelona, where she will offer sailings to the Iberian Peninsula and Greek Isles including stops in Cannes, France; Athens and Santorini, Greece.

Jewel of the Seas 2021 Europe Itineraries

Rhapsody of the Seas will spend another summer season in Venice offering 7-night sailings alternating between Greece/Croatia and the Greek Isles. Select sailings will offer late nights in Kotor, Montenegro.

Rhapsody of the Seas 2021 Europe Itineraries

Adventure of the Seas will offer 7- to 11-night sailings including overnights in St. Petersburg, Russia from Stockholm, Sweden and will also sail to Helsinki, Finland; Tallin, Estonia and Visby, Sweden. Adventure will be open for booking the week of December 9.

Royal Caribbean Crown & Anchor Society members can begin booking sailings on November 13, 2019, with the general public available to begin booking on November 14, 2019.

Previewing Royal Caribbean's 2020 Europe cruise season

In:
Category: 
23Oct2019

In 2020, Royal Caribbean will sail to more than 100 destinations across seven ships in Europe, and we have a look at what options are out there for booking next summer.

Here is a look Royal Caribbean has ready for next summer across the continent.

Northern Europe

Explore the Baltic, British Isles, Scandinavia and Russia with 7 to 12 night itineraries onboard Brilliance of the Seas, Jewel of the Seas, and Anthem of the Seas.

Amsterdam, Netherlands

Brilliance of the Seas
10-NIGHT BRITISH ISLES
12-NIGHT BALTIC

Stockholm, Sweden

Jewel of the Seas
7-NIGHT SCANDINAVIA & RUSSIA

Copenhagen, Denmark

Jewel of the Seas
7 NIGHT NORWEGIAN FJORDS-COPENHAGEN
7/11 NIGHT SCANDINAVIA & RUSSIA
11 NIGHT ARCTIC CIRCLE

Southampton, United Kingdom

Anthem of the Seas
8-NIGHT NORTHERN EUROPE CITIES
5-NIGHT PARIS & BILBAO- SOUTHAMPTON

Mediterranean/Greece & The Greek Isles

Two newly Amped ships will offer sailings in Europe in 2020, with the arrival of Explorer of the Seas and Allure of the Seas. Both ships will offer 7-night family-friendly Western Mediterranean adventures. Radiance of the Seas will hop around the Greek Isles.

Guests have the choice of 6-14 night itineraries ranging from Greek Isles, Italy or Spain centric, Canary Islands and Mediterranean onboard the Explorer, Vision, Jewel, and Anthem of the Seas.

Barcelona, Spain

Allure of the Seas
7 NIGHT WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN
Jewel of the Seas
7 NIGHT ITALY, FRANCE & SPAIN
12 NIGHT MEDITERRANEAN VENICE
12 NIGHT MEDITERRANEAN GREEK ISLES
Vision of the Seas
12 NIGHT MEDITERRANEAN
12 NIGHT MEDITERRANEAN GREEK ISLES

Rome, Italy

Explorer of the Seas
7/9 NIGHT GREEK ISLES
6/7 NIGHT WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN
7/8/9/10 NIGHT GREEK ISLES
12-NIGHT HOLY LAND
Jewel of the Seas
12-NIGHT HOLY LAND

Venice, Italy

Rhapsody of the Seas
6/7/8-NIGHT GREECE & CROATIA
7-NIGHT GREEK ISLES

Southampton, United Kingdom

Anthem of the Seas
8-NIGHT SPAIN & PORTUGAL
6/7/8-NIGHT FRANCE & SPAIN
14-NIGHT ITALIAN MEDITERRANEAN
13-NIGHT MEDITERRANEAN BEACHES
14-NIGHT DISCOVER THE CANARIES
13-NIGHT ITALIAN MEDITERRANEAN
10-NIGHT SUNSHINE IN THE CANARIES

Do you have a Royal Caribbean cruise to Europe booked in 2020? Let us know in the comments where you will be sailing!

7 tips for a great Mediterranean cruise

In:
21Oct2019

Cruising on the Mediterranean Sea is among one of the most popular cruising destinations available. With ports of call in France, Italy, Greece, Turkey and more, each port of call offers  its own incredible cuisine, architecture, historical sites and modern culture.

If you are considering your first European cruise, here are some helpful tips for an incredible first Mediterranean cruise!

1. Pace yourself

Most European cruises are at least 7-nights long and include multiple port stops. In fact, Mediterranean sailings usually offer less sea days than a Caribbean cruise, and that means lots more touring time.

Even before you step foot onboard your Royal Caribbean ship, you may be dealing with a long airplane flight to your embarkation port.  Flying across the world comes with its own challenges, such as fatigue and jet lag.  Add a busy itinerary of shore excursions and you have a recipe for burnout.

The key is to plan breaks and acknowledge you cannot do it all.  If possible, fly in a few days ahead of your cruise to adjust to the local time and recover from the lost sleep.

Once on your cruise, plan your excursions to vary the activity level.  Try alternating "culture days" spent in museums and historical sites with "sun days" spent on the beach or enjoying outdoor activities. If on one day you want to walk all around Rome, then try for a lighter activity level before tackling the mountains of Nice and Villefranche.

When it comes to nightlife onboard the ship, while heading to bed at 10pm seems sacrilegious, your body will thank you the next day when you are well-rested.

2. Try to blend in

While you are a tourist visiting these amazing countries, there are some easy ways to avoid becoming that guy and not become a spectacle.

While no one expects you to be fluent in Spanish, French, Italian and Greek, it means a lot if you can learn some basic phrases to communicate with the locals. Even a friendly bonjour, or grazie will go a long way when talking with the locals (especially if you are trying to get help).

Unfortunately, crime and scams are common in Europe so you want to avoid sticking out to not be a target for thieves. Wallet snatching, pick pockets and flower sellers usually go after tourists, so be vigilant and careful about these scams.  Carry only the credit cards you need and a minimum of cash. Men should carry their wallets in front pockets and women should use purses that have a zipper.

3. Dress appropriately

Most of the ports of call feature ancient cities and villages, replete with cobblestones and uneven pathways, so comfortable shoes are absolutely important if you want to enjoy the adventure (and avoid injury).

If you are planning to visit religious sites, keep in mind that the expected dress code is more conservative than what one typically wears on a shore excursion.   For example, you might need clothes that cover your shoulders and knees to visit a mosque.

4. Plan for the weather

Summer is the most popular time to go on a Mediterranean cruise,a nd that means the sun will be shining and the temperatures on the rise. If you go in the summer, plan for the heat. Bring broad-rimmed hats and plenty of sunscreen. 

Just like at home, when the temperatures are high, you will get tired quicker. Prioritize your destinations and take frequent breaks.

5. Sometimes you do not actually dock in the city listed

If your cruise lists a stop in Paris, Rome or Athens, your ship is not actually dropping you off in the city.

Since these cities are inland, Royal Caribbean will dock at a seaside port, which are often several hours away.

If you wish to visit these major cities, allow ample travel time in your itinerary to get there, and pad your estimates to account for traffic and other delays. 

6. When to go

Just like the Caribbean, there is prime time for Mediterranean cruises, as well as shoulder seasons.

June through August is the "high season" for most itineraries, with the prices during the other months being lower. Sometimes tourist facilities close during the offseason or have shorter operating hours, but the money saved by cruising in the shoulder season could be substantial.

The most comfortable temperatures will be found in the spring and fall.  Greece, Turkey, the Rivieras, and southern Italy and Spain get especially hot in the summer, with temperatures approaching 100 degrees away from the ocean.

7. Currency

No matter which cruise you take, having some cash for emergencies, refreshments, taxis or souvenirs is a really good idea. Many of the countries you visit on Mediterranean cruise will use the Euro including France, Spain, Italy, Greece and Malta. Before you leave for the cruise, double-check which currency the countries you will be visiting use if you plan to tour on your own or go to local markets. 

Be sure to also keep in mind that only US currency is accepted onboard Royal Caribbean ships. While the ship will offer currency conversions, you will likely get a better rate elsewhere.

Your tips

If you have taken a Mediterranean cruise before, what would be some tips to share to someone new to the experience? Did we miss important advice? Let us know in the comments!

Royal Caribbean announces 2020 Europe sailings

In:
18Dec2018

Royal Caribbean has released the second phase of its 2020 European sailings.

Six Royal Caribbean ships had their 2020 sailings revealed, alongside Anthem of the Seas and Independence of the Seas, which had their deployments announced a few weeks ago.

Headlining the 2020 season for Royal Caribbean in Europe will be Allure of the Seas, which will sail from Fort Lauderdale to Barcelona on March 1, 2020 and then begin offering 7-night Western Mediterranean cruises until Allure heads to Miami on November 1, 2020.

Brilliance of the Seas will sail from Amsterdam, and offer sailings to the Baltics and British Isles.  Her 2020 European season will culminate with a 15-night Arctic Crossing on her way back to Boston.

Explorer of the Seas returns to Europe in 2020 to offer primarily Greek Isles cruises from Rome. Among her many itineraries, Explorer of the Seas will also offer 12-night Holy Land sailing.

Jewel of the Seas will sail a variety of itineraries in 2020, including a few sailings from Barcelona before moving to Copenhagen to sail to Scandinavia, Russia and the fjords. Jewel then returns to Barcelona to offer Greek Isles and Mediterranean sailings, including a couple of sailings to the Holy Land.

Rhapsody of the Seas will homeport in Venice, Italy, and sail primarily to the Greek Isles and Croatia.

Vision of the Seas will also sail the Mediterranean and visit destinations in the Greek Isles and Venice before heading to Cape Liberty, New Jersey on September 5, 2020.

Royal Caribbean Crown & Anchor Society members can begin booking sailings on December 18, 2018, with the general public available to begin booking on December 19, 2018.

First look at Europe Phase II: Summer 2019 sailings

In:
07Mar2018

Royal Caribbean released new information about summer 2019 European cruises.

The newly released sailings include:

These new sailings are also being shown as available for booking via Royal Caribbean's web site.

Royal Caribbean previously announced European sailings for summer 2019 on these ships as well.

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