Spotted: Royal Caribbean bans smoking in casinos due to Omicron variant concern

20 Dec 2021

You won't be able to smoke in Royal Caribbean's casino for at least a while.

Royal Caribbean informed passengers sailing on Mariner of the Seas,  Freedom of the Seas, and Harmony of the Seas the casino will not allow smoking inside due to the Omicron Covid-19 variant.

Three RoyalCaribbeanBlog readers reported announcements made on these ships on Monday that smoking will not be allowed in the casino so that guests can remain masked while in the casino.

It is not clear yet if this is a fleetwide policy, nor if/when smoking in the casino will return on these ships.

The casino was the only indoor location passengers were allowed to smoke. This will leave just a designated smoking area on the pool deck for smoking.

Casino | Royal Caribbean Blog

Carnival Cruise Line announced a similar policy on Monday, banning smoking in its casinos through January 31, 2022.

Banning smoking in the casino comes on the heels of Royal Caribbean tightening up its Covid-19 protocols in general, such as requiring face masks to be worn by all passengers in vaccinated-only areas of the ship.

The casino is one of these vaccinated-only areas aboard Royal Caribbean ships.

Passengers may only remove their mask indoors in public areas while seated and actively eating or drinking.

Royal Caribbean sends out email to all guests informing them of new smoking ban

09 Sep 2013

Royal Caribbean formally announced their balcony smoking ban in an email that was sent to its past guests detailing the decision.  The statement confirmed the details we had previously reported last week and states the ban goes into effect for all sailings departing on or after January 1, 2014.

Royal Caribbean confirmed smoking in all indoor locations will be prohibited, with  the exception of the Casino and the Connoisseur Club on Freedom and Voyager Class ships and one designated smoking venue on ships sailing from Chinese homeports. In the Casino, there will be designated smoking and non-smoking areas. 

Outdoor smoking areas will be designated on the starboard side of all ships; with the exception of Oasis-class ships that will allow smoking on the port side of the ships. 

Indoor smoking areas permit tobacco cigarettes and electronic cigarettes. Cigars and pipe tobacco can be enjoyed in designated outdoor areas, or in the cigar club on the ships that offer this venue. 

Royal Caribbean adding outdoor areas for smokers

07 Sep 2013

Earlier this week, Royal Caribbean implemented a ban on its guests smoking on balconies effective January 1, 2014.  While the move may feel restrictive for smokers, Royal Caribbean is increasing the number of outdoors areas where guests who wish to smoke may do so.

The outdoor smoking areas will be identified on the starboard side of all its cruise ships, except for Oasis-class cruise ships that will allow smoking on the port side.

Royal Caribbean executive vice president Lisa Lutoff-Perlo commented on the decision to ban smoking on balconies, "We realize smokers may be concerned that they will not be permitted to smoke on balconies. I want smokers to know that we are increasing the number of areas on the exterior of the ships to allow guests to smoke because we want you to feel comfortable and welcome."

In addition, Lutoff-Perlo indicated that non-smoking guests, "have continually told us that they don’t get to enjoy [balconies] if smokers are in close proximity and smoking on their balconies."

Royal Caribbean intends to make all indoor public spaces smoke free with the following exceptions

  • Casino (there will be non-smoking sections of the casino as well)
  • Connoisseur Club on Freedom- and Voyager-class ships
  • One designated smoking venue on ships sailing from China homeports

Any of the indoor smoking areas are for cigarettes and e-cigarettes only.  Cigars and pipes will be allowed in designated outoor spaces or in the cigar club.

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