A full five day work week to start the new year. What a different feeling than one has during the dwindling weeks of a year’s end. For one thing, we are now beginning the so-called “wave” booking season. One of the consequences of this is a strong desire every three minutes or so to ask our colleagues in revenue management how the bookings are going. In reality, the booking volume isn’t so radically different than at other times of the year. The “wave” hasn’t been as pronounced in recent years as it was 10 years ago. Nevertheless, because a significant % of the year’s business remains to be booked, we are all anxious to extrapolate what we are experiencing to guess at how the year might be. It’s hard to tell if our friends in revenue management really like the extra attention or not.
One of the members of our Board of Directors, Bill Reilly, was in the office today. He is the Chair of our Board Committee on Safety, Security, Environment, Medical & Public Health. He was in for one of the occasional briefings we give to him. Bill is a great asset to the company, having served as Administrator of the EPA under the first President Bush. Gary Bald, our Senior VP responsible within management for the same five areas of Safety, Security, Environment, Medical & Public, arranged the briefing for Bill. Senior members of Gary’s team presented the latest developments in the different areas. I sat in on part of the discussion and as always, it makes me very proud to be a part of a company that works so hard to do the right things and to do them well. Often, we are exploring completely new terrain, especially as it relates to the environment.
One interesting element of my schedule over the next few days is the opportunity to meet four Staff Captains who are ascending to Captain to fill the openings in the fleet created by the addition of our Oasis-class ships. It’s hard to know what is greater, the honor or the responsibility of becoming a Royal Caribbean Captain. Of course, all of these Staff Captains have trained for years to be ready for this opportunity. Probably the most notable change they will encounter is the giant elevation in interaction with the guests.
A few readers asked what is going on with Explorer of the Seas’ dry-dock. The summary answer is nothing unusual or major. It is a standard dry-dock.
So these are some of the things that are going on while I wait to see if the Eagles will show up against the Cowboys on Saturday.