Royal Caribbean cruises in September 2023: What to expect

05 Sep 2022
Matt Hochberg

Have a Royal Caribbean cruise planned for September 2023? Fall is a popular time to sail because of lower prices.

There is plenty happening and changing with cruise ships, so here is a look at what to expect if you are going on a cruise in September.

This post will share important information what you should know before going on a cruise in September. September is the traditional beginning of fall, but it is still a very hot month in the Caribbean.  Meanwhile there are also ships sailing to Alaska and Europe.

September is also one of the best months to book a cruise in terms of value.  Since school is back in session, there are less families cruising and with it being the peak of hurricane season, demand for cruises dips a bit.  The result is competitive prices for going on a cruise.

If you can find time to hop on a ship, September is a great time to cruise and with more ships back in service, there are lots of good options again to consider.

Ships sailing in September 2023

You will find Royal Caribbean cruises sailing in three markets during September: the Caribbean, Alaska, and Europe.

September begins the tail end of the Alaska cruise and European cruise seasons.  There are still plenty of cruises in these markets, but the combination of school restarting and cooler temperatures reduce demand for these markets.

In fact, September is one of the lowest demand months of the year for a cruise. This means if you want a bargain, September might be the best month for a cruise.

In the Caribbean, it's still the off season for cruises and the peak of hurricane season means demand tends be lower than almost any other month. 

September weather on a cruise

While it may be fall where you live, September is still very much summer in the Caribbean.

Expect typical summer weather in the Caribbean, which means hot and humid weather with passing rain showers at any given time.

If you are looking at the weather forecast for your cruise, don't be surprised if rain is in the forecast every day.  All that means is there is a chance for a passing or pop up storm.  More than likely you will have plenty of sun, with perhaps a quick downpour.

September is the beginning of the peak of hurricane season, which means the likelihood of a named storm is higher than it was earlier in the summer. 

According to the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory, 87 percent of minor and 96 percent of major hurricanes occur between August and October, peaking in early September.

Hurricanes are obviously an issue, but Royal Caribbean monitors the weather and will move ships around storms.  Fear not: your ship will not go anywhere near a hurricane.

The biggest issue with cruising in September is the last-minute itinerary changes that can occur due to storms. 

Read moreWhat to know about cruising during hurricane season in the Caribbean

Over in Alaska, September begins the end of the Alaska cruise season, although Royal Caribbean extended the season this year by an extra month.

Just like in the Caribbean, September is one of the cheapest months to sail to Alaska because kids are back in school. 

In addition, the best time see the Northern Lights in Alaska is in September. September is the time of year when the sun sets earlier during the cruise season, which means the sky gets darker and makes for the most ideal viewing conditions.

Read more50 tips for planning your Alaska cruise

And yes, September is also a great time visit Europe for good deals.

September is a popular time to cruise the Western Mediterranean because you can avoid the families and still enjoy warm temperatures. 

Where is the best place to cruise in September?


Depending on if you prioritize weather, a low price, or something else, there are a few good cruise ideas for September.

One advantage of taking a cruise over the first weekend in September is the Labor Day holiday, which means one less day of vacation time required.

Hurricane season may mean cheap cruises, but if you want to mitigate your risk of a hurricane impacting your cruise, try a southern Caribbean sailing.

The ABC (Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao) islands are in an area that rarely gets impacted by cruises, so it's less likely for a tropical storm to cause an issue. Of course, your ship still needs to get back and forth to this area, so it's not a completely fool-proof plan.

An Alaska cruise in September is a great idea to save money, especially for a last-minute cruise deal. The downside to Alaska in September is it tends to be colder and rains more than other months.

Europe might be your best bet for a September cruise in terms of comfortable weather and prices.  

Matt started Royal Caribbean Blog in 2010 as a place to share his passion for all things Royal Caribbean with readers. He oversees all the writers at Royal Caribbean Blog, and writes a great deal of content on a daily basis.  He has become one of the foremost experts on a Royal Caribbean cruise.

Over the years, he has reached Pinnacle Club status with Royal Caribbean's customer loyalty program.

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