Top 10 Perfect Day at CocoCay secrets and tricks

In:
23May2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean's private island in The Bahamas, Perfect Day at CocoCay, has caught a lot of cruisers' attention with all of the great activities and things to do.

If you are planning your own visit to Perfect Day at CocoCay, then here are our top ten tips and tricks for visiting Perfect Day at CocoCay.

1. Your drink package works at Perfect Day at CocoCay

If you purchase a Royal Caribbean drink package for your cruise, you can use the drink package benefits while at Perfect Day at CocoCay.

This means if you have the Deluxe Beverage Package, you can enjoy unlimited alcoholic beverages, along with bottled water, sodas and more. Likewise, the Royal Refreshment and Soda Package benefits extend to Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Just like on the ship, souvenir cups or drinks served in pineapples/coconuts are not included with your drink package benefits.  If you have the Deluxe Beverage Package, you can get a discount on the souvenir cup.  Or you can ask for the drink in a regular cup to pay no additional charge.

2. Your Voom package works at Perfect Day at CocoCay

If you have a Voom internet package, you will have internet connectivity at Perfect Day at CocoCay.  

WiFi coverage extends across the island, which means you can stay connected and share photos or videos with friends back home.  Heck, you can even post updates on our message boards!

3. Best times for shortest water slide lines

Thrill Waterpark is home to Perfect Day at CocoCay's incredible water slides, and as you might imagine, a lot of cruisers are going to want to try them all.  While lines for the slides are usually quite manageable, here are the best times to try the slides to have a minimal wait:

  • Before 11am
  • After 3pm

4. Secret menu item at Snack Shack

Snack Shack serves up some great food, but they also have a menu item that is not listed on the printed menu. If you ask nicely, you can get a chicken parmigiana sandwich that is essentially a cross between the crispy chicken sandwich, mozzarella sticks and marinara sauce.

5. Buy Thrill waterpark admission before the cruise to save money

If you want to go to Thrill Waterpark, you will absolutely spend less money if you pre-purchase it before your cruise.

Royal Caribbean sells its waterpark passes via the Cruise Planner site and regularly puts the tickets on sale.  If you want to save money (that is everyone), buy your tickets before you board the ship.

6. There is lots to do that costs nothing extra

There is a lot of attention for the activities on Perfect Day at CocoCay that costs extra, but there is a lot of fun things to do that costs absolutely nothing extra.

First and foremost, you can walk around Perfect Day at CocoCay without paying extra.  Just like any port of call, you can walk off the ship and explore on your own.

Here is a list of things that is included with your cruise fare when you visit Perfect Day at CocoCay:

  • Splashaway Bay
  • Captain Jill's Galleon
  • Skipper's Grill
  • Chill Grill
  • Snack Shack
  • Oasis Lagoon pool (Beach  chairs, umbrellas and towels)
  • Chill Island (Beach  chairs, umbrellas and towels)
  • South Beach (Beach  chairs, umbrellas and towels)
  • Sports Courts
  • Fitness Classes
  • Freshwater showers
  • Tram service
  • Beach access wheelchairs

7. Free tram service around the island

Keep an eye out for the complimentary trams that are found around Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Beginning when you walk down the pier, you will find tram service to take you down the pier to save some steps (you will have plenty at Thrill Waterpark).

Once on the island, there is complimentary tram service that can take you all corners of Perfect Day at CocoCay. 

As a bonus, many of the trams are solar powered!

8. If you want a quiet spot, go to Chill Island

If your idea of a fun day is quiet time getting away from it all, head to Chill Island.  Chill Island is accessible via the green pathway that is towards the left side when you walk onto Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Once at Chill Island, keep to the left side of the area for pristine ocean views that has no music or the sounds of people at the pool or water park.  Instead, you will find only the sound of the ocean waves.

9. DIY Ice cream sandwiches

You will find self-serve soft serve ice cream machines at Perfect Day, along with chocolate chip cookies.  See where I am going with this?

Grab two cookies, dispense ice cream between the two and combine for an awesome dessert.

10. Keep an eye out for chickens, iguanas and birds

This is a fun tidbit, but Perfect Day at CocoCay is home to more than just beautiful views.  If you walk enough of the island, it is not uncommon to see wild chickens roaming the grounds, along with iguanas that sometimes get close to the dining areas to see if any scraps of food rolled away.

Seagulls can also be found flying around, so be sure to keep an eye on your food.

Regardless of the animal, please do not feed any of them.

Did we miss any Perfect Day at CocoCay secrets? Share them in our comments!

Review: North Star Alaska Experience on Ovation of the Seas

In:
23May2019
By: Twangster

Royal Caribbean has introduced a new Alaskan experience on it’s newest and largest ship to visit Alaska Ovation of the Seas.  The North Star Alaskan Experience is offered in addition to the customary and complimentary North Star Experience offered to guests on some Quantum class ships.  The new North Star Alaskan Experience is offered when the ship calls on Endicott Arm and Dawes Glacier during the summer Alaska cruise season. 

The Alaskan edition of the North Star Experience is offered at an additional charge and timed to occur during the ship’s visit to Endicott Arm and Dawes Glacier.   Unlike the complimentary North Star experience the Alaskan experience ride extends over the sides of the ship giving participants unparalleled views of the ship and the surroundings.  Float over the side of the ship as pieces of glaciers float by below you.  

The North Star Alaskan Experience begins with complimentary hot chocolate in an exclusive area of the North Star Bar for participants while they wait for their North Star Alaskan Experience.

The initial offering of the North Star Alaskan Experience is priced at $49 per person for adult or child with up to fourteen guests per ride. The experience is shared with any other guests who book the same time.

The North Star Alaskan Experience lasts approximately 15 to 20 minutes and begins by rising to a height of approximately 250 feet above sea level where the North Star turns and extends over the side of the ship.  This position is held for a few minutes giving participants an incredible view of the ship and surroundings before the North Star climbs to a height of approximately 300 feet above sea level.

 After several minutes the North Star lowers and extends over the opposite side of the ship at approximately 250 feet above seal level before eventually returning to center and gently lowering back to it’s starting position.

 

The North Star Alaskan Experience is available while the ship is within Endicott Arm during the approach and departure from Dawes Glacier and it is available while the ship is at Dawes Glacier.  Both offer a unique and different perspective.  On the Ovation of the Seas initial visit to Dawes Glacier the rides starting between 9am and 10am offered views of Dawes Glacier while the rides before and after featured views of Endicott Arm.  This will vary from sailing to sailing depending on time of arrival and ice conditions.

Guests interested in the complimentary North Star Experience will find the North Star available based on reservations at certain times and purely on a walk up basis at other times.  A standby line is available during reservation based times for last minute guests on a space available basis.  The complimentary North Star Experience does not extend over the sides of the ship.  

Limited reservations are usually offered in the Cruise Planner before sailing while the majority of North Star reservations are offered only on board once the cruise has started.  Reservations can be made by visiting the temporary Box Office kiosks upon boarding on embarkation day.

The North Star Alaskan Experience is only offered on Ovation of the Seas and it’s a unique perspective to an Alaska cruise available on no other ship or cruise line.  

Royal Caribbean's Memorial Day Sale offers up to $200 bonus instant savings

In:
23May2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean's Memorial Day Weekend sale offers 50% off second guest, kids sail for less and up to $200 bonus instant savings.

The promotion runs between May 23, 2019 - May 27, 2019 and is valid on sailings departing on or after June 23, 2019.

It includes:

  • 50% off cruise fare of second guest booked in the same stateroom as first, full-fare paying guest.
  • 25% cruise fare savings for third guests and higher booked in the same stateroom as the first two qualifying guests
  • Up to $200 instant savings per stateroom determined by category booked and sailing length:
    • Sailings 5 nights or less, $25 savings for Interior and Ocean View, $75 for Balconies and $75 for Suites
    • Sailings 6 nights or longer, $50 savings for Interior and Ocean View, $100 for Balconies and $200 for Suites

BOGO is combinable with Memorial Weekend Sale, promotional OBCs, NextCruise offers, Instant Savings, restricted discounts (for example, Seniors, Residents, Military), Promo Code driven offers, Free Upgrades, Crown and Anchor discounts and Shareholder Benefits. Memorial Weekend Sale is combinable with promotional OBCs, NextCruise offers, Instant Savings, restricted discounts (for example, Seniors, Residents, Military), Promo Code driven offers and Free Upgrades but not combinable with Crown and Anchor discounts and Shareholder Benefits. Offers are not combinable with any other offer or promotion, including, but not limited to, Standard Group, Interline, Travel Agent, Travel Agent, Friends and Family, Weekly Sales Events, Net Rates. Promo Code driven offers are based on select ships and sail dates and must be applied at time of booking, limit one promo code per booking. 

Offer open to residents of US, Canada, Puerto Rico and select countries in the Caribbean.

Royal Caribbean opens bookings for 2020 sailings on Voyager of the Seas

In:
22May2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean has opened bookings for Voyager of the Seas 2020 sailings from Singapore.

Voyager of the Seas will offer a short season from Singapore, between May 2020 and June 2020 to destinations in Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.

At the conclusion of her season, Voyager of the Seas will re-position to Hong Kong, China.

You can view all the 2020 Singapore sailings on Voyager of the Seas.

Perfect Day at CocoCay review on Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast

In:
22May2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Our newest podcast episode is out to help give you a quick "audio escape" to a Royal Caribbean cruise!

Episode 303 is available for downloading, where Matt shares his thoughts on the newly opened Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Royal Caribbean has unveiled their private island in The Bahamas, and Matt tried out all the new additions. From the waterpark, to the zip line, to the beaches, to the helium balloon, Matt discusses his experience across Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Here’s the podcast page for Episode 303. And don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast via RSSStitcher or on iTunes!

Take a listen and as always, let us know what you think! Please rate and review the podcast on iTunes and leave your comments below!

Royal Caribbean Memorial Day pre-cruise planner sale offers up to 30% off savings

In:
22May2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean is celebrating Memorial Day weekend with a new Cruise Planner sale that offers up to 30% savings on pre-cruise purchases.

The Memorial Day Sale runs between May 22 - May 29, 2019 and is valid on sailings from June 1, 2019 - December 15, 2019.

The offer is valid on certain shore excursions, drink packages and internet packages. It is available on all ships, except Spectrum of the Seas.

Royal Caribbean states guests can expect to see:

  • Beverage Packages: Up to 30% off onboard prices
    • Deluxe Beverage Package + VOOM Surf & Stream 1 Device: Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC + Charter Sailings).
    • Deluxe Beverage Package. Discount Varies by Ship. (Excludes SC + Charter Sailings).
    • Refreshment Package: 30% off onboard prices. (Excludes SC + Charter Sailings).
  • Shore Excursions: Save up to 25% on select tours on select sailings. Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC + Charter Sailings).
  • Internet: up to 60% off on select sailings
    • VOOM Surf + Stream Voyage Package 1, 2, 3, 4 Device(s): Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC + Charter Sailings).
    • VOOM Surf Voyage Package 1, 2, 3, 4, Device(s): Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC + Charter Sailings).
  • Dining
    • Unlimited Dining Package on 3 Night - 9 Night sailings. Discount varies by ship. (Excludes MJ, QN, SC + Charter Sailings
  • ACTIVITIES: Up to 10% off on select sailings
    • All Access Ship Tour. 10% off. Discount varies by ship. (Excludes SC + Charter Sailings).

To check if your sailing has this new offer available, log into the Cruise Planner on Royal Caribbean's web site look for any available offers. Keep in mind that not all sailings may see the sale applicable, nor are all offers significantly cheaper than previously posted.

If you spot a better discount on something you already pre-purchased, you should be able to cancel the purchase and then re-purchase the same item under this promotion.

Royal Caribbean extends Singapore season for Quantum of the Seas in 2021

In:
21May2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean announced today it will add a new homeporting season in Singapore for Quantum of the Seas, sailing in the region until April 2021. The additional season
of seven months will be the cruise line’s longest ever Singapore deployment for a Quantum class ship.

Quantum of the Seas is scheduled to return to Singapore in November 2019. She will offer 34 sailings during the six months from November 2019 to April 2020. The ship will then return for a longer season in October 2020, with a total of 40 sailings over seven months till April 2021.

Royal Caribbean’s Senior Vice President International, Gavin Smith, said that the commitment to bring in two of Royal Caribbean’s largest and most innovative ships in 2019 alone, along with the decision to sustain the presence of a Quantum Class ship in the region till 2021, underscores Royal Caribbean’s confidence in the region’s thriving cruise industry,
with Singapore playing a major role as a cruise hub.

“Royal Caribbean has big ambitions for Asia – and Singapore sits at the heart of our growth in this region. The additional homeporting of Quantum of the Seas in the 2020/21 season announced today will add some 180,000 guests to the Singapore cruising scene, and we are excited for them to experience our world-class, innovative ships.

“2019 also marks a new era for cruising for both Royal Caribbean and the region. We celebrate our 50 th anniversary as a global brand, and ships like Spectrum of the Seas and our
additional capacity with Quantum of the Seas here shows that we are poised to ride on Asia’s astounding growth. Singapore plays an important role as one of the region’s most significant cruise destinations, and we look forward to growing the cruise industry here and in the region.”

First look: Ovation of the Seas visits Alaska glaciers

In:
21May2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean's Ovation of the Seas has begun sailing her inaugural season in Alaska, and she is the first Quantum Class ship to offer cruises in the region.

When you combine the natural splendor and beauty of Alaska with one of the world's most advanced cruise ships, the result is a fantastic view.

Royal Caribbean crew ambassador Stephen Burke snapped these photos of Hubbard Glacier from Ovation of the Seas on her recent visit.

With the highest vantage point on any cruise ship, the North Star – the ship’s signature glass observation capsule with panoramic views from 300 feet above sea level – is the “best seat in the house” for guests to take in the majestic mountains, eye-catching glaciers and diverse wildlife native to the state’s stunning landscape.

This year marks Ovation of the Seas' first season offering cruises to The Last Frontier, with 7-night itineraries to destinations from Juneau to Victoria, British Columbia

Ovation will return to Alaska in 2020 for her second consecutive season to offer cruises through the region’s untouched wilds on 7-night itineraries from Seattle, Washington.

Royal Caribbean announces Oasis of the Seas $165 million amplification details

In:
21May2019
By: Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean announced today its big plans to enhance and upgrade Oasis of the Seas later this year.

The ten year anniversary of the iconic ship's launch will see a $165 million amplification that will add several new venues, including a few options new to the fleet. Oasis will become the first Oasis Class ship to be modernized as part of the Royal Amplified fleet modernization effort.

The amplified Oasis will set sail on Nov. 24, 2019, beginning 7-night Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries from Royal Caribbean’s new, state-of-the-art Terminal A in Miami. Oasis then moves to the New York City area in May 2020 as the largest ship to sail from the New York area. Oasis will reposition to her new summer home at Cape Liberty in Bayonne, New Jersey, offering 7-night sailings to The Bahamas with visits to Royal Caribbean’s newly transformed private island destination, Perfect Day at CocoCay.

The 63-day modernization will include a number of new changes.  Here is a breakdown of what Royal Caribbean is adding or changing to the ship.

Top Deck

The pool deck will get a makeover with a new Caribbean-style pool deck that includes The Lime & Coconut. The signature bar was first added to Navigator of the Seas, and will offer plenty to do day or night with poolside cocktails, DJs and live music across two locations. The pools on Oasis of the Seas will deliver a larger variety of seating and shade, including comfy casitas, daybeds, hammocks and swing seats, new whirlpools on the top deck, and a refreshed Solarium for the adults.

Royal Caribbean will reimagine the Pool and Sports Zone when it adds the 10-story Ultimate Abyss slide, along with the trio of waterslides known as The Perfect Storm.

Kids will love to see Splashaway Bay come to the ship (including a Splash Pad for toddlers) that will feature three waterslides, water cannons, fountains, pools and the first-ever twin drench buckets.

Dining

Oasis of the Seas will expand its dining offerings with a few new options.

Oasis will introduce Royal Caribbean's first-ever barbecue restaurant, Portside BBQ, which serves an authentic, meat-packed menu inspired by the best-in-class barbecue across the United States.

From smoked marbled brisket, pulled pork and chicken, to beef ribs and burnt ends, the casual eatery on the pool deck will tie it all together with classic sides – including mac and cheese, homestyle cornbread, baked beans and coleslaw – and down-home desserts such as the Banana Dream and a brownie cookie mashup.

  • El Loco Fresh will offer made-to-order tacos and burritos, quesadillas, mini salads and salsas galore.
  • Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade will be added to the Boardwalk neighborhood. With 80 big-screen TVs, tabletop games, arcade classics, tournaments, an Owner’s Box VIP room, bar fare and ice-cold brews,
  • Sugar Beach will have more than 220 types of candy and a new walkup ice cream window
  • Oasis of the Seas will still offer Chops Grille, Giovanni’s Table and Izumi.

Entertainment

Coming to the Royal Promenade is a new venue, Spotlight Karaoke.  The venue will have a main stage, as well as two private rooms for guests to sing their favorite songs.

Oasis of the Seas will also have a Quantum Class favorite added to the ship, with Music Hall being added. Music Hall will include live cover bands, an expansive dance floor, pool tables and intimate loungers across two levels.

Bionic Bar will also be added to Oasis of the Seas, alongside existing fun spots such as Boleros, Schooner Bar, Blaze Nightclub & Comedy and English pub Atlas & Globe.

Kids & Family

Royal Caribbean is reimagining its dedicated spaces for babies, teens and kids.  Each of these areas is being enhanced from top to bottom and amplified with technology to offer interactive, personalized and unexpected experiences.

Adventure Ocean will receive a total makeover, with newly designed areas organized by activity type and created to fully immerse kids and their families in the adventures they choose based on their interests.

Returning offerings include a nursery for the youngest of travelers, and a specialized area with programming for kids 3 to 5 years old. Teens will enjoy their private area that has exclusive features like a “hidden” entrance, gaming lounge, movies, music, and a new, laidback outdoor deck.

A new glow-in-the-dark laser tag game, Clash for the Crystal City, will be offered onboard that will pit two clans, the Yetis and
Snowshifters, to battle for claim of the crystal city and defeat impending extinction.

A new Royal Escape Room will be added, Mission Control: Apollo 18. The year is 1973 and travelers must come together to launch Apollo 18 to the moon by solving every mind-bending puzzle before time runs out.

Navigator of the Seas Live Blog - Day 3 - Nassau

In:
20May2019
By: Matt Hochberg

The final day of our 3-night cruise takes us to Nassau, Bahamas. I thought it might be a slower day to catch up and relax, but I ended up doing more than I thought.

First up was a chance to hop in the cockpit of a Boeing 737 and try my hand at (virtually) flying. This is a Royal Caribbean excursion that brings me to Jetline Simulations.  

This time around, we did one full flight from Baltimore to Reagan National in Washington DC, a landing in St. Maarten and a landing in Shanghai.  I think I did pretty darn well!

After impressing myself with flying skills, I met up with Cruise Life Matt for drinks and lunch in downtown Nassau.

We started out at Pirate Republic Brewery and then headed over to dine at Sharkeez Tiki Bar.

Following lunch, I went back onboard Navigator of the Seas and joined a group of other media to try out the Royal Escape Room.  

Each escape room on Royal Caribbean is different, and while the layout and general aesthetic is similar to the escape room on Mariner of the Seas, the puzzles are completely different.

We did not escape in time, but we did manage to solve the entire puzzle in an extra 4 minutes or so. Our game host said of the roughly 300 game sessions so far, we were only one of 14 teams to complete the puzzle, regardless of overtime or not.

Following the escape room, I was in desperate need of a nap so I took a very satisfying nap back in my room.

I awoke from my midafternoon slumber to see our ship begin sailing away from Nassau.

For dinner, I chose between Izumi and Jamie's Italian and ultimately decided on Jamie's Italian simply because the menu at Jamie's Italian on Navigator of the Seas is different from any other Jamie's Italian across the fleet.  

I started out the tomato bruschetta, and then moved onto the eggplant parmigiana, with a side of linguine. 

Great meal, and the service was fantastic.

After dinner, I went outside to enjoy a lovely sunset.

While at the pool deck, I finally got to meet the man who has cruised with Royal Caribbean the most.  He is affectionally known as Super Mario, and fellow blog writer Michael Poole interviewed him a couple years ago

Mario was incredibly gracious, and we had a great chat.

With no way to possibly top meeting Mario, I enjoyed a few drinks around the ship and then decided to do the responsible thing and head to bed.

Thanks for following along this live blog. I had a lot of fun sharing all the big Perfect Day at CocoCay changes, and I love hearing back from all of you.

My next live blog kicks off sooner than you think, as I decided to "YOLO" book another sailing to Perfect Day at CocoCay on Mariner of the Seas for June 14. Stay tuned for that live blog!

Stray Observations

  • I love these elevators on Adventure, Mariner and Navigator that tell you what the next stop will be.
  • I stopped by the Diamond Lounge and found a few menus to show



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