Ask Adam Blog Series – February 2013 Q & A

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The clocks have been sprung forward and we are just days away from spring! But first, let’s fall back to February’s answers to the Ask Adam Blog. To see the responses to January’s Ask Adam post, click here, or if you happen to have a question you would like to ask Adam regarding Royal Caribbean (or even what he’s been up to) please follow this link to our Facebook Discussions Page and submit your questions there.

Adam, my question is; did you work on a cruise ship with Royal Caribbean before you became a CEO? – Bridget M.

Bridget, my background is in law. I’ve held several positions at Royal Caribbean however none of them were based onboard our ships.  I do have an enormous appreciation for my shipboard colleagues who make this business possible.

Hi Adam, after your last response to my questions and comments I resolved not to make any more suggestions/comments. However, after 17 Royal Caribbean cruises and 5 more booked right now, I think I need to suggest this. I note that Royal Caribbean has been concerned with making savings through changes in the processes of issuing cruise documents, and luggage tags. I have adjusted to those changes because I understand you are saving money on paper and postage. But here’s one more change or better, adjustment that you need to make in issuing cruise documents. Right now when we complete the online check-in and are ready to print the SetSail passes we must use at least three (3) sheets of paper to print the pass. Then when we get to the cruise port the agents who do the check-in need only the top page with the signatures. The other two pages have a lot of the same information that is in the E-Docs and is NOT used and those pieces of paper are thrown away. That means that my wife and I show up with six (6) sheets of paper and use two and throw away four (4) sheets of paper. That is a waste that I, and I am sure others also, would like to avoid. So here’s what I suggest. Simply reformat in your computer system the SetSail Pass so that the essential information needed by the check-in desks will fit on one printed page, and have the rest available to be printed if the person wants it. In short, make the SetSail Pass one (1) page (per person). – Ed T.

Thank you for your suggestion, Ed. Your point is well taken.  For the last few months the two departments responsible for guest documents and SetSail passes have been collaborating on ways in which to streamline the entire document process for our guests and travel partners.

Reducing the SetSail document to a single page is a worthy endeavor but our goals are a bit broader in scale and will take some time to get to what we believe is a better document experience for our guests and travel partners.

Again, thank you for your suggestion and please bear with us as we take guest documents and SetSail passes to the next level.

Hi Adam. Has Royal Caribbean ever considered the Great Lakes for a cruise? There are plenty of good ports for this trip, especially Chicago. – James Z.

Hi James, this request comes up from time to time and we have indeed reviewed it but we do not view lake-only cruises as being within our scope of business.

Will Royal Caribbean ever go back to offering the Pacific Northwest cruise from Seattle to the various British Columbia ports? That was my first cruise ever because it was short and good as a “test” experience. I’ve since cruised 9 times. It might be a good way to build a new customer base. – Justin

Hi Justin, I concur that this is a good test cruise for the regional Pacific Northwest market.  While we have no immediate plans to offer this, our Deployment team will continue to evaluate to see if there is an opportunity to return in the future.

What happens when your cruise gets taken for a charter? – Christine M.

Hi Christine, a chartered sailing is a significant undertaking for us and for the charterer.  The attraction for the charterer is to be able to determine the itinerary and onboard programming to create the ideal vacation for their guests.

The majority of our charter sailings are booked before deployment opens.  In instances where guests are booked on what later becomes a chartered voyage, special incentives or other offerings are presented to the affected guests in an effort of good will.

I would like Royal Caribbean to go to Turks & Caicos. – Kaci

The only cruise port in Turks & Caicos is at Grand Turk and this facility is owned by the Carnival Corporation so availability is very limited. As a result we do not have plans to dock there.

What has Royal Caribbean learned, if anything, about the Carnival Triumph situation and how would Royal Caribbean respond to a similar situation? – Gary C.

In view of the Carnival Triumph incident – how many backup systems are in place on Royal Caribbean? We love Royal Caribbean and will be cruising again on your ship(s) I’m sure – feel safer though after you answer this question. Thank you! – Debbie R.

Gary and Debbie, while we do not know the details of what caused the fire on Carnival’s ship, we understand that guests may be concerned about their safety while onboard cruise ships. The entire cruise industry through our industry association CLIA is dedicated to continuous improvement in safety and guest comfort.  All crew onboard Royal Caribbean ships are trained in basic firefighting procedures, while crew members specifically assigned to the ship’s firefighting teams receive additional specialized training. Should a ship experience a loss of electrical power, we have emergency generators onboard. Thank you for reaching out to us about your concerns, we assure you the safety and security of our passengers, crew and vessels is our highest priority.

I have been following the events onboard Carnival’s Triumph. I know these events happen occasionally but it would seem logical to have EMERGENCY SUPPLIES at cruise ports for events like this. Each cruise company could contribute a certain amount to the cache. MREs could be part of the emergency stash, portable camping toilets could be used, pallets of water, etc. If one line had an event like the Triumph’s engine fire, those supplies could be flown out via helicopter and that line would have to replenish the emergency supplies. It would just be a standing stockpile for emergency use that would be shared by all major lines to be used as needed.

I also want to mention that while onboard Allure of the Seas (early December 2012), I met the man who takes care of all the trees and plants. He was a complete delight! He was so proud of the ship’s flora and knew everything about each plant. Seriously, I truly enjoyed following him around as he guided us amongst the plants. I really enjoyed that aspect (I love knowing how things are done). Thank you. – Pat V.

Thank you for your suggestion.  Also, we are pleased that you enjoyed your experience onboard Allure of the Seas.

Hi Adam. How about adding special guest shows? For example, NCL has Blue Man Group. I have been on cruises in Europe and the United States and should complain about the low quality of evening shows. Especially on European cruises it is boring and unprofessional. And how come the hosts on different ships, during 12 years, are using the same jokes? Guests do not even smile about drinking water in the toilette. Maybe there are better shows on the Oasis class but I speak about Legend, Adventure and Navigator of the Seas. Thank You. And Royal Caribbean is still my favorite. – Dimitri R. 

Thank you for your comment, which I will share with our Entertainment department.  Please know that we are very proud of our partnership with Broadway and are the first in the industry to pioneer “Broadway at Sea”.  You can find Hairspray on Oasis of the Seas, Chicago: The Musical on Allure of the Seas and Saturday Night Fever on Liberty of the Seas.  We also pride ourselves on creating Royal Caribbean Signature Production Shows which are presented across the fleet.  With the variety of genres from Ballroom, Pop and Aerial productions, our goal is to entertain all of our guests daily.

Also, every year we book over 4,000 guest entertainers across our 22 ships.  We review hundreds of acts to source the best line up for our varied audiences. We feature tribute groups that celebrate amazing groups such as the Beatles, The Supremes, The Temptations, Abba, and Frankie Vallie to name a few. We feature West End and Broadway vocal acts, top comedians from around the world, superb Acapella groups and talented impressionists, hypnotists, illusionists, opera singers, gauchos, jugglers, aerial acts, balancing acts, ventriloquists, concert pianists, violinists, multi-instrumentalists and folkloric acts. Our goal is to create a customized program that is a great fit for the itinerary as well as the guest mix onboard.

Does Royal Caribbean give consideration to providing “handicapped” friendly shore excursions when planning cruise port visits? Seems like you read more and more excursion descriptions noting not recommended for wheelchairs, etc. – Michael J.

Yes, we offer Shore Excursions for our guests who must remain in wheelchairs in over 60 ports around the world. These are called Easy Tours and provide the highlights of the cities we visit. Other excursions may be accessible for guests who can transfer out of their wheelchair and take a few steps into the motor coach.  All accessible shore excursions are clearly identified with wheelchair icons on the Shore Excursions section of the website. As guests browse through excursions in the different ports of calls, they will see these icons on the tours in which we offer this access.   Please also read more here where we address accessible shore excursions on our website.

Thanks again to everyone for submitting questions, and remember if you have a question you would like to ask, please click here. If you have a customer service related issue, the quickest way to obtain a response is to fill out our contact form here: http://bit.ly/c44GkU

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