Advice Magazine

Royal Caribbean

5 1
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4 star 4 star 4 star 4 star empty star

Royal Caribbean sails 23 ships.

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About Royal Caribbean

This is a great choice for families — second only to Disney Cruise Line and significantly less expensive. It’s also ideal for sporty travelers: The line’s adrenaline rush-driven activities — the best at sea — include rock-climbing, surf simulations, ice skating, ziplining, inline skating, and boxing (in a real ring). Entertainment choices feature high-dive shows on Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, as well as parades with stilt walkers and “Madagascar,” “Shrek,” and “Kung Fu Panda” characters, the result of a partnership with DreamWorks Animation.

Recommended Reviews


russhendrix
Third Mate

Traveled As:
Couple

Room Type:
Balcony

Experience:
2-3 cruises

4 star
4 star
4 star
4 star
empty star

Allure was Fantastic, but first time cruisers should read this

small verified icon Verified Review | Ship: Allure of the Seas | Sail Date: Jul 06, 2014

As far as cruises go you can't go wrong with this one.  The Allure is Amazing...Huge, pretty new, Clean, and well appointed.  The staff was friendly and there is a lot to do on the ship.

If you aren't familar with cruises you should keep some things in mind:  They say that a cruise is "all inclusive", but this couldn't be further from the truth (this is for all cruise lines, not just RC).  From the second you book the trip  they are working to get more and more money out of you. Everyday i got emails from RC to sell upgrades.   Some of the extras they try to get from you - upgrading your room, doing their excursions (which are expensive), upgrading your dining, pay for Overpriced pictures taken by aggressive photographers on the ship, buying alcohol package (expensive), buying juice package, buying bottled water package, buying the soda package (soda is not included on a cruise), tips (why they just can't inlcude this in the price i don't know),  Wifi (outrageous price), parking for your car (outrageous) or airport transfers, and the list goes on and on. Its a game cruise lines play to get as much money from you as possible.  You can go and not spend a lot, but i think most people end up spending some.  They give you a card much like a credit card for use on the ship and some people get a shock at the end of the cruise when they get their final bill.

There is a good variety of food and lots of it, but to me it just tasted OK.  You can tell they are feeding people on a budget. I had a strip steak in the main free dining room and it was as thick as a piece of paper.   On this ship as most new cruise ships, there are about two or three times as many pay resturants as their are free ones.  The quality of the pay food would be similar going to a nice resturant at home.  On the Allure they had a pay ice cream shop....I didn't appreciate that, but you can get free ice cream at dinner - its just not as good.  They also have a pay cup cake place, pay starbucks, pay coffee places, ect.  They have a pay Johnny Rockets which is good and not expensive, but when you are already supposed to be getting free food its a little frustrating.  With the exception of the spa, bingo, gambling, and tours i think all the entertainment was included.

I'm not sure why, but cruise ships always go to the worst possible ports.  You do have to be careful in most places when you get off the ship. St. Marteen felt pretty safe so we rented a jeep and explored the island for the day (much cheaper than doing their excursions) - it was fun!

Its important that you make reservations for all of the shows you want to see or even think you might want to see weeks before you get on the ship. Do Not wait.   Otherwise, you are forced to wait at the end of the line and either won't get in or sit in back of theaters.

If you are able to spend the money, I would highly recommend a balcony room.  Spending a week in a small room with no view of the outside makes you feel clastrophobic after a few days.  We had a ocean view balcony and it was nice to have some privacy and just sit and watch a sunrise or sunset eating free room service.

Even though there are about 8500 people on board including staff most of the time it didn't feel crowded except at the pools. This ship feels less crowded than other ships I have been on.  If your looking at different cruises I would just say try to get a newer ship as they are used 24/7 365 days a year  - ships age quickly.  When i was looking there was a tempation to save a few dollars and go on a cheaper cruise line, but you get what you pay for.   RC is one of the best cruise lines and if you do your research you will find that different cruise lines have different niches. If you are set on a cruise this is one is a great one, if your undecided another type vacation maybe better.

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eallevato
Third Mate

Traveled As:
Family w/older children

Room Type:
Balcony

Experience:
2-3 cruises

5 star
5 star
5 star
5 star
5 star

Fantastic Cruise!!!

small verified icon Verified Review | Ship: Jewel of the Seas | Sail Date: Jun 07, 2014

This was our second cruise and we reserved a balcony stateroom.  For this type of island hopping cruise the balcony room is a must ,as you can view all of the sights from the confort of your own stateroom. We did not feel the need to eat at the specialty restaurants as the food at the Windjammer and Tides  was delicious and varied. The crew was helpful and friendly and the service was outstanding.  We also enjoyed the nightly shows and trivia/quest games.  The piano player in the Schooner bar was great. The only negative comment that we have is that there was no ironing board and iron available to guests so that we can iron our wrinkled clothes.  I understand the concern about the danger of fires, but they could have a checkout program, where you are allowed to use the iron for say 1 hour and then you must return it.  The highlight of the excursions was the swim with the sting rays in Antigua, truly a close encounter of the third kind!!!

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skugler8
Purser

Traveled As:
Couple

Room Type:
Inside

Experience:
7+ cruises

5 star
5 star
5 star
5 star
5 star

loved it

small verified icon Verified Review | Ship: Enchantment of the Seas | Sail Date: Aug 08, 2014

My husband and I really enjoyed our time on the boat and the Excursions that royal offered. We can not wait for our next cruise in January. We will be on the same ship because its great for a family because we will be taking the kids.

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Was this review helpful? 9


rmeisneript
Third Mate

Traveled As:
Family w/young children

Room Type:
Balcony

Experience:
7+ cruises

4 star
4 star
4 star
4 star
empty star

Vision 5 day western cruise

small verified icon Verified Review | Ship: Vision of the Seas | Sail Date: Jul 26, 2014

This ship gets a above average for the dining room food. The food on all ships have seemed to have gone down since the 80's and 90's, this cruises dining brought me back to those days. I usually go on two or three cruises a year and I do rate the dining room food on Vision to be on top.The Windjammer restaurant was less than on other Royal ships. The specialty restaurants are always great.

This ship had two ports of call. The Key West port is nice for everyone, and the Grand Cayman is

terrific for everyone. The ship also has better entertainment than most ships of the same size. It does not match ships like the Allure, but for the size the entertainment is above average. And last the children's area is very average.  They try to keep the children engaged but just don't have the setups that newer bigger ships have. Still the best on the seas is the newest Disney ships.

Happy sailing, RussHappy

 

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2014cruise50
Third Mate

Traveled As:
Singles/Friends

Room Type:
Oceanview

Experience:
7+ cruises

3 star
3 star
3 star
empty star
empty star

Royal has changed!

small verified icon Verified Review | Ship: Vision of the Seas | Sail Date: Jul 31, 2014

It was great to get away for a few days, but I'm a past employee so found several things have gone downhill. They tell you you can't bring bottled water onboard - you can! If you bring or buy be prepared to drink warm-no fridge in room. Viking crown lounge stinks from sushi restsurant attached. No announcement of poolside lunch or other activities like galley tour. No cushions,popcorn or bar service at deck movie. Limited supply of souvenir barware and bar servers don't know where you can get it. Drinks too sweet and too weak! Deck bar servers walk with empty trays-you have to wait forever for your drink. In the past they would circle the pool deck with trays full of daily drink special so you could get one on the spot. Used to be 3 employees to 1 passenger. Now it's 1 employee to 4 passengers. I guess they've moved their focus to the new mega ships. 

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Roll Calls


Quantum of the Seas
66
Members on Cruise

8 Night Transatlantic Westbound (Southampton To Cape Liberty)

Sail Date: Nov 02, 2014
Ship Name: Quantum of the Seas
66 Ship Mate app members

View Roll Call »

Independence of the Seas
61
Members on Cruise

14 Night Transatlantic Westbound (Southampton To Ft. Lauderdale)

Sail Date: Nov 01, 2014
Ship Name: Independence of the Seas
61 Ship Mate app members

View Roll Call »

Oasis of the Seas
60
Members on Cruise

12 Night Transatlantic Westbound (Southampton To Ft. Lauderdale)

Sail Date: Oct 15, 2014
Ship Name: Oasis of the Seas
60 Ship Mate app members

View Roll Call »



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