Ask Adam Blog Series – September 2013 Q & A

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Thank you for submitting your questions to the monthly “Ask Adam” blog series.  If you have a question you would like to ask please post it in the comments below or on our Facebook wall.  Then look out for my response to select questions in November.

Q.  Any chance that Royal Caribbean would add a third ship to Alaska?  Mainly doing round trips from Seattle or Vancouver.  -Tom H.

A.  Thanks for the question, Tom. Our Deployment team is constantly reviewing our strategy and optimizing our portfolio of products.  We will continue to review our Alaska offerings but at this time we are pleased with Rhapsody of the Seas from Seattle and Radiance of the Seas from Vancouver and Seward.

Q.  My first cruise was a 3-day “trial” out of Port Canaveral with Royal Caribbean, and we were hooked. I just turned 60, an since we only cruise during the seasons when the high school and college kids are in school, most of my cruise mates are within 10 years of my age. Regarding your nightclubs onboard, I rarely hear the good old Rock & Roll of the 60s, 70s and 80s. Mainly, it’s the recent “pop” music, or disco (YUCK!) parties. Come on, there’s a lot of rockers on board. Let’s have some Rock & Roll dance music! (I will say, on a recent Celebrity cruise, R&R music was prevalent.) – Ron E.

A.  Thanks for the suggestion.  Our DJs try to play a variety of music to cater to all guests onboard.  They are also always able to take requests from our guests to play more music they are interested in hearing.

Q.  Hey Adam! This summer I went on my first ever cruise. I really enjoyed the youth program but I don’t understand why there are only activities from the evening to late at night. Are there any plans for there to be activities during the day as well as the evening and night? I know there was activities all day when we out at sea but we had different staff members with us. I would have preferred to have the staff members we had throughout the week as the staff members from the younger groups where acting like we were little kids. – Darren E.

A.  Hi Darren.  Adventure Ocean is open every day whether we are at sea or in port.  Based on whether it is a sea day or port day they may close for lunch and a short time between afternoon and evening but the programs are available every day.  We do try to keep the staff with the same age group throughout the week.  There are circumstances where we need to move them around but typically they stay with the same group.

Q.  Hi, we are booked to go on the 30th May 2014 to Iceland and Norway from Southampton on Adventure of the Seas. Can you advise if this ship is going to be refurbished prior to our departure and is there Wi-Fi on board and what is the cost? This is our first cruise and we have booked it to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary.

We have booked an outside cabin. Just wish we could afford one of the balcony suites…here’s hoping we have a lottery win before we sail. – Mr. & Mrs. J

A.  We decided to take advantage of the Adventure of the Seas dry dock scheduled in April 2014 to add new features including an outdoor movie screen; the Royal Babies & Tots Nursery; Giovanni’s Table, a casual Italian trattoria; new staterooms and enhanced technology.  The current pricing for Internet access on Adventure of the Seas is $0.75 per minute and we offer a few package options starting at $24.95, however prices are subject to change.  Have a great cruise.

Q.  I am wondering if Royal Caribbean would ever do a round-trip cruise from the US to Europe (especially Italy) and back. I have a family member who would love to do a Mediterranean cruise, but this person cannot fly for longer than three hours at a time due to a blood clot issue. So, the only way to get over there would be to cruise over, but then we would need to also cruise back after cruising around Europe. I am sure there are others who would enjoy such a cruise, too, even without health problems! – JM

A.  Hi JM, I appreciate the suggestion, but I do not see this as a great fit for our line.  While I do appreciate the reasoning, the Transatlantic Ocean Voyages are not as popular as our other cruise itineraries.

Q.  Hi Adam, hope you’re doing fine.  I’m from Singapore and I was very happy that Mariner of the Seas will be home ported here for 4 months starting November 2013.  It is twice as big as the previous Legend of the Seas.  Thank you and your team for bringing larger ships to South-East Asia.  I would like to inquire about future cruise deployment to Singapore.  Will we have the chance to have larger ships coming in or are there any other plans for us?

One more question, what’s this no smoking policy that was created?  What is the coverage?  I believe that it should not affect existing bookings but only those cruises booked after this no smoking policy is announced.  Awaiting your favourable reply! Thanks! – Gibson C.

A. Gibson, thanks for the questions.  We are also excited about the deployment of Mariner of the Seas to Singapore.  While we are confident that it will be a success we have not made any commitment or announcement to bring a larger ship.

Regarding your second question, it is difficult to introduce a policy like the smoking policy and have it apply only to new bookings.  Since this is ship-wide policy, it would need to be in effect on a specific day.  We provided a 90 day notice to all our guests to allow those that would like to cancel their cruise to be able to do so without penalty.  Our smoking policy revision was made in consideration of ongoing guest feedback, with the intention to find a reasonable balance between the needs of smoking and non-smoking guests.  At this time, we do not anticipate making any changes to the policy. In conjunction with the balcony smoking restriction, we will be enhancing (and expanding, where possible) the smoking areas on the exterior decks of our ships. We hope that with the balcony restriction and the enhanced exterior smoking areas, we can find as much of a balance as possible between our smoking and non-smoking guests.

Q.  Hi, I live in the Boston area and was wondering if any venues would be added.  My wife and I just got back from the Canada & New England cruise on Brilliance of the Seas and would love to do a Boston to Bermuda 7 night cruise, but it’s only offered by another cruise line out of the Black Falcon terminal.  Any chance for the future? -Philip M.

A.  Hi Phillip, we are pleased to offer cruises to Bermuda from Cape Liberty in New Jersey, Baltimore and now Ft. Lauderdale and do not currently have plans to utilize other homeports.

  • Michael C

    Dear Adam

    We are very loyal to RCCL and in fact we are Diamond Plus members and more than half way to Pinnacle status.

    On the positive
    – We enoy the preferred seating at shows and event

    On the negative side
    – We dont get the recognition as a Diamond Plus member like we use to

    For consideration
    – I think a nice touch for Diamond Plus members would be Soda’s and Cappurino’s during dining room meals

    We’ll see you in a few months.

    Safe seas

  • Elizabeth

    With regards to your comment about the smoking policy – “We provided a 90 day notice to all our guests to allow those that would like to cancel their cruise to be able to do so without penalty.” This does not apply to your UK/Europe guests as they would still lose their deposits even at 365 days before sail date.

  • Glenn

    We are very excited about the RCCL’s new ship, Quantum of the Seas! Anticipation is mounting as we start the initial planning for our group cruise for the summer of 2015.
    As a frequent cruiser on Royal Caribbean, I have major concerns for the proposed ports for the new Quantum Ship. Since this a new ship, we would love to see new ports of call!!
    We were all extremely intrigued when the initial Quantum of the Seas itinerary seemed to include new ports such as Barbados, St Lucia, and St Kitts. The 7 and 8 day itineraries are especially of interests for new ports of calls because they will probably be the most popular for groups and families.
    The idea of going to a new port such as Barbados or Aruba and spending two or more nights would also be great. Anything is better than going back to the same old ports.
    As we review the upcoming itineraries, the new ports seem to be quickly changing in favor of overnight stays in the same old ports and more and more sea days. This would be a travesty.
    Our initial plans are to cruise the Quantum of the Seas, however, we are all in agreement that we would like to visit some new ports and urge Royal Caribbean to add new ports to accompany their new ship!!

  • Tanya W.

    My family and I sailed on Enchantment of the Seas on 10/7. This was our first experience with RCCL. While we thought the ship was beautiful, we had some issues. There were people smoking in the casino, so I limited my time in there. Also, I think there could be more “kid-friendly” food at dinner time, both in the main dining room and the Wind Jammer.

  • Tanya W.

    We were trying to decide between two excursions. We went to the excursion desk to ask questions, but the gentleman just handed us the brochure and said to come back when we had made a decision. I tried to ask a question; he was again dismissive. When we returned and spoke to a different gentleman, Carlos, he was very helpful. As we went to pay for the one we wanted, it had just sold out. Had the previous gentleman been helpful, we would have gotten the excursion we desired. Carlos put us on a wait list and sent an email seeing if he could get us tickets from Atlantis for the one we wanted. We called the next morning and he said they wouldn’t do it. We went on the dolphin excursion at 1:30 that we went ahead and booked. When we went down for it, I asked an Atlantis employee, who referred me back to Carlos, who was now able to get us the upgrade to include Aquaventure. However, he didn’t inform me that we wouldn’t finish our dolphin excursion until 4:15 and Aquaventure closed at 6pm. Due to the afternoon storms that are inherent in the Bahamas, they shut it down and we ended up with 30 minutes of time. Had he explained the closing time and risk for poor weather, we would not have paid the extra $160. I know it worked out for you guys, but was not the best decision for us. It would have been most helpful if the first gentleman had helped us so we could have gotten the tickets and then gone at 8:30 am so we would have gotten the usage desired.

    • Adam

      Hi Tanya – We are sorry to hear about this experience, and one of our representatives will be reaching out to you shortly.

  • Bryan

    I am a huge cruise ship fan. Actually, I am currently in school to get my CG Mates License to possibly sail with RC. Every weekend, I watch all the cruise ships leave from every port in Florida, as well as Galveston, and New York. As I watch the Carnival and Disney ships sail by, I always hear the Sailing Away party with the music and the DJ, but I never anything major come from the RC ships. On the last RC cruise I went on, the Sail Away party was nothing to write home about and I think that RC should consider vamping up the parties. The Sailing Away party is supposed to signify the start of a complete vacation! It’s the start of leaving all of your worries, email’s, and business matters at home and I think that it should be celebrated accordingly.

    Thank you for your time.

  • Christine

    I am a bit concerned, I sail in less than 2 weeks on the Allure. It seems you recently did an upgrade to your system and it showed I owe money. I did call your customer service and they told me on their side it showed I was paid in full and to not worry about it. After a day of seeing the balance due of $4.90, I paid it for fear that my reservation would be cancelled. I checked my reservation today and it shows the $4.90 is still due. I checked my credit card and the $4.90 has been charged to it. I’m not sure what’s going on but this coupled with the speed issues as my very worried, especially since I convinced 4 other couples to travel with me.

  • Gloria

    Wanted to know when RCI will bring back ships that will depart out of Los Angeles( and stay)? I’m a diamond member nearing diamond plus. Now that my family is growing, it’s easier to stay cruising locally because of the flight savings. Last month, we went on the Allure of the Seas and man do we miss RCI. There’s a huge market for your ships out here. Please consider coming back to beautiful Los Angeles!!!!