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Cruise Ship CV Example and CV Writing Guide
Posted by Phillip Jewell on Mar 20, 2020
A comprehensive, helpful guide to writing the perfect cruise ship CV or resume, including a cruise ship CV example and template.
When pursuing jobs on cruise ships, an effective CV or resume is one of your most important tools. In the first instance, it’s the only tool at your disposal that has the potential to make you stand out from the crowd.
In this guide, we’ll tell you how to prepare a CV that impresses recruiters and convinces them that you’re the best candidate for the role.
Over 30 million people opted to holiday on cruise ships in 2019. The annual number of cruise ship passengers has been rising year-on-year for a decades. As such, there is always going to be high demand for cruise ship staff.
However, competition for cruise ship jobs in strong. Jobs on cruise ships are highly sought after, largely due to the fact that the roles offer travel, accommodation and a life at sea. Because of this, cruise ship jobs are hard to get.
If you want to be in with a chance of landing your dream cruise ship job, it’s vital that you approach applications with a strong, industry-optimised CV.
This guide covers CV and resume writing for all types of cruise ship jobs. These include:
- Deck Stewards & Crew Staff
- Cruise Directors
- Able Seamen
- Cruise Ship Hostesses
- Cruise Stewards/Stewardesses
- Singers and Entertainers
- Cruise Ship Social Hosts
- Chefs and Hospitality Staff
- Sales Assistants
- Shore Excursion Managers
Whether capacity you’re working in – from entertainment, service and accommodation to ship maintenance, management and engineering – this guide will tell you everything you need to know to write a powerful cruise ship CV.
Cruise Ship CV Example
To help you secure the job you want in the cruise industry, we’ve created a professional, industry-optimised cruise ship CV template that you can use today. This cruise CV template can easily be tweaked and edited to suit your application.
While we have used Royal Caribbean Cruises as an example in this CV template, this CV is optimised for all cruise ship applications.
The template is also ideal for all jobs in the cruise industry, including deck crew, hospitality staff, sales assistants and able seamen.
How to Structure Your Cruise Ship CV
Include a professional profile.
To impress recruiters and hiring managers in the cruise industry, start your CV with an engaging professional profile that articulates your key skills and experiences while showcasing what makes you unique.
Keep your professional profile brief and to-the-point. Use strong verbs and adjectives, and make sure it communicates your best selling points.
Here is an example of cruise ship CV’s professional profile:
Extroverted, customer-oriented bartender, with over 3 years’ experience in hospitality and a passion for the cruise industry. Committed to enhancing the guest experience and maintaining hospitable environments that passengers love.
Utilises an in-depth knowledge of over 50 cocktail recipes and bartending experience in fast-paced environments to maintain quality standards and ensure optimal guest satisfaction. Proficient at using all bartending tools, including cocktail shakers, jiggers and drink strainers.
Should you include a photo on your cruise ship CV?
If you’re applying for jobs on cruise ships in the UK, the US, Ireland, Australia or Canada, you generally don’t need to include a photo on your CV. However, for roles in continental Europe (with the exception of the Netherlands), make you sure to include a photo.
For further information on whether or not you should include a photo on your CV, take a look at our article on the topic. In this article, we state whether or not CVs should contain photos on a country by country basis.
Include Your Work Experience
Include your work experience, using the reverse-chronological format. The reverse-chronological format involves including your most recent job first, then working backwords.
For each role, start by adding your job title, the name of the company you worked for, the location of employment and the dates of employment. Then include your responsibilities and achievements, using bullet points to draw attention to the key information.
Use this section to showcase what you’re good at and how you can add value, rather than simply writing a list of your responsibilities.
Here is an example of a cruise ship CV’s work experience section:
Include Your Key Skills
Dedicate a section to your key skills to show recruiters what you bring to the table. Include a small number of your strongest skills that enable you to excel in your profession.
In this section, focus on hard skills that are vital to complete your everyday tasks to high standards. These will vary depending on your role.
For example, if you’re a sales assistant, hard skills would include sales strategies, techniques and processes. If you’re pursuing senior roles, management and leaderships skills would be a key aspect of your skill set.
When it comes to showcasing your soft skills – soft skills include people skills, communication skills, character skills and personality traits – it’s much more effective to show, instead of telling .
But how do you show your soft skills?
The best way to show your skills is to write about times you have utilised the skills in the work experience section of your CV. While writing about your achievements and duties, draw attention to your skills by providing tangible examples.
By backing your skills up with examples in this way, they have much more of an impact in the eyes of recruiters.
What are the most important soft skills for cruise ship CVs?
Of course, the most important soft skills will vary depending on your profession. But there are some that apply to the majority of cruise ship professionals.
Below, we’ve detailed five of the most important soft skills to include on your cruise ship CV.
1. CUSTOMER SERVICE
Unless you’re working in the engine room, there is a strong chance that you will encounter customers while working on cruise ships. In most roles, customer interaction will be a daily aspect of your job.
As such, customer service is one of the most important skills for cruise ship staff. If you can demonstrate your ability to satisfy customers and optimise their experience, you’ll make a great impression on recruiters.
How do you show customer service skills on your cruise ship CV
While customer service is an important skill for cruise ship roles, the skill isn’t exclusive to the cruise industry. Whether obtained at sea or on land, customer service is equally valuable for cruise ships jobs.
Here is a sample of how to show customer service skills on your CV:
‘Contributed to the improvement of customer service by maintaining a polite, professional manner when engaging with guests and going the extra mile to solve their problems’.
If you don’t have customer service experience, don’t worry. Instead demonstrate your understanding of the importance of effective customer service and showcase your people/personality traits.
If you analyse the skill requirements on cruise liners' job adverts, you’ll usually find that they expect candidates to be enthusiastic. This is an important skill because you’ll be spending long periods of time at sea, away from your home. To ensure you perform your job to high standards, you need to be enthusiastic.
But enthusiastic about what?
Candidates are expected to be enthusiastic about the cruise industry, customer service, people and working at sea.
Why is this necessary? Because if you’re enthusiastic about these things, you’ll be a more effective employee.
How do you show enthusiasm on your cruise ship CV?
Use your professional profile to touch on your passion for the cruise ship industry and the customer experience. State that you’re enthusiastic about working at sea and ensure to highlight your people skills.
Of course, we only recommend this approach if you are in fact enthusiastic. We would never urge anyone to lie on their CV.
Writing about your enthusiasm in your cover letter is another great way of making a strong impact on recruiters and hiring managers.
Whatever your role on cruise ships, you will be required to communicate with either colleagues or customers. To maximise efficiency and customer satisfaction, it’s important that you are able to exhibit quality communication skills.
How do you show communication skills on your cruise ship CV?
A fantastic way of articulating your communication skills on your CV is to highlight accomplishments that came about as a result of your communication skills.
Additionally, write about duties that involved communication with colleagues and customers. This might involve participating in meetings or engaging with clients to solve problems.
4. TEAM WORK
In order to maximise on-board efficiency and complete tasks to high standards, cruise ship employees must possess good team working skills.
A lack of effective team work can lead to poor performance, failure to achieve objectives and a poor customer experience. To make a positive impact on recruiters, ensure your CV draws attention to your team working qualities.
How do you show team working skills on your cruise ship CV?
Highlight successes and achievements that were a result of your team work skills.
Additionally, you could showcase extracurricular activities that involved good teamwork. For example, touching on your participation in sport teams shows that you’re adept at collaborating with others to achieve positive outcomes.
When working on cruise ships, you will be representing your employer’s brand. In some cruise ship jobs, you will often be the ‘face’ of the company.
For this reason, recruiters in the cruise industry expect candidates to demonstrate their ability to be professional on a consistent basis.
How do you show your professionalism on your cruise ship CV?
A great way to show your professionalism on your CV is to highlight times you have demonstrated professionalism while operating in challenging environments. For example, this might involve maintaining a calm, professional demeanour while solving problems for angered customers.
Here is an example of how to show your professionalism on your CV:
‘Maintained a calm, professional comportment while engaging with agitated, unreasonable customers on a regular basis’.
Include Your Education & Training
List your qualifications, starting with your most recent or most relevant qualification.
What details should you include?
Include the qualification you achieved, the university/college name, the grade you achieved and the dates of study.
Feel free to leave out any training that is not relevant to the role you are applying for. If you’ve completed small courses that are relevant to cruise ship roles, such as health & safety and first aid, ensure to include these in this section.
Include Any Additional Information
In this section, include any additional information that is relevant to your applications. Additional information might include languages, licences, certifications, IT proficiency and voluntary activities.
Cruise Ship CVs For People With No Cruise Ship Experience
If you have no cruise ship experience, focus on your transferable skills and experiences. Make these transferable skills and experiences the focal point of your CV.
For example, if you’re pursuing sales jobs on cruise ships, you could focus on your customer service and customer interaction experiences.
Use your work experience section to highlight responsibilities and achievements that are relevant to the role you are pursuing on cruise ships.
Remember, most cruise ship jobs don’t require direct experience on cruise ships. As an example, sales jobs on cruise ships usually require retail experience, which doesn’t necessarily have to have been obtained in the cruise industry.
What To Do Next
Scour job boards and job listings to find your ideal role. Network with industry professionals and build relationships with potential recruiters on professional networking platforms, such as LinkedIn.
There are also a number of websites dedicated to encouraging communication between members of the cruise industry. These include CruiseMates , a website that offers up-to-date information about the cruise industry, as well as a forum for professionals to meet.
Hopefully this guide has helped you prepare a powerful CV that will enable you land your dream job in the cruise industry. Feel free to use our cruise ship CV template to optimise your job search and increase your chances of success.
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Cruise Ship CV Example and CV Writing Guide
A comprehend, helpful guide to writing the perfect shipping ship cv or resume, including a cruise ship cv example and template..
This guide covers CV and resume writing for all choose of cruise ship jobs. These include:
Cruise Ship CV Example
The template is also ideal by all chores within the cruise industry, including covered crew, kindness staff, sales assistants and able yachtsmen.
How to Tree Insert Cruise Ship CV
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1. CUSTOMER SERVICE
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4. TEAM WORK
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Include Your Education & Training
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Select your brand and explore our open jobs on land or at sea
We are Passionate
We deliver unforgettable vacations to guests who trust us with life’s greatest moments.
Discover why our crew is the reason our guests keep coming back for more.
We are Innovative
We build the best ships, and even better careers, all while doing the right thing.
We are elevated by technology and are always looking beyond the horizon.
We are Unstoppable
Together we make the impossible, possible.
We open the world to our employees. We travel most of the known world, and our crew is there every step of the way.
We are Propelled by People
Our employees and crew are the driving force behind our success.
They are the heart of our organization. They are the ones that propel us forward.
Become a valued member of our expanding family today.
Discover firsthand what makes Royal Caribbean a great place to work by watching this video. Hear Security Officer Sharon and Reshma Security Staff share their experiences and passion for being part of our team.
Elevate your career: join our elite sommelier team!
Meet Jelena, our Cellarmaster, and March, our extraordinary Sommelier, as they share their remarkable journeys and profound dedication to our team.
Elevate your culinary journey by becoming a valued member of our exceptional culinary team!
Embark on a journey with Celebrity Cruises and meet our exceptional team members who bring culinary excellence to the high seas. Konstantinos, our visionary executive chef; Ornella, our dedicated assistant pastry chef; and Atziri, our executive chef pastry & bakery on Celebrity Cruises, as they share, showcase the passion and dedication that define our cruise experience.
Work with our amazing culinary team!
Thinking about joining Royal Caribbean? Watch this video to hear Executive Sous Chef Omar and CDP3 Pastry Cook Manisha share why they love working with us. Join our growing family at careers.royalcaribbeangroup.com. #IAMRCG #PropelledbyPeople
Ready to embark on this exciting journey? Join our ever-growing family today at careers.royalcaribbeangroup.com.
Dive into the vibrant world of our passionate team with an exclusive video. Listen to Chef de Rang Roberto and Commis de Rang Aleksandra as they reveal the exceptional qualities that make working with us truly extraordinary.
Ever wondered what it’s like to be part of our crew onboard?
Roberta, Bartender on Royal Caribbean International’s Wonder of the Seas, shares a few highlights of her job. Thank you for your hard work, Roberta! You’re an amazing teammate.
Exploring a career with Celebrity Cruises?
Experience the essence of what makes Celebrity Cruises an exceptional workplace in this captivating video. Join Melanie, our Deputy Chief Security Officer, as she shares her personal journey and unwavering passion for being a part of our team. Join our growing family today. Discover more at careers.royalcaribbeangroup.com. #IAMRCG #PropelledbyPeople
Embark on a journey with us and become a valued member of our Food & Beverage team!
Experience the passion and enthusiasm of our team firsthand by watching this video. Listen to Waiter Jizelle and Restaurant Attendant Aleena as they reveal what makes working with us so special. Ready to embark on this journey with us? Join our expanding family today at careers.royalcaribbeangroup.com. #IAMRCG #PropelledbyPeople
Step aboard and become a vital part of our esteemed marine engineering team!
Curious about life aboard our Celebrity Cruises crew? Get an inside look from our dedicated engineers who’ve shared some captivating highlights of their job. Embark on your journey with our expanding family today at careers.royalcaribbeangroup.com. #IAMRCG #PropelledbyPeople
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Cruise Ship Attendant Resume Sample
Boost your odds of landing your desired job and ignite your resume with our exceptional Cruise Ship Attendant CV. Whether you prefer to use it as is or tailor it to your unique qualifications, our HR-approved resume builder makes the process seamless. Simplify your journey towards your dream job today.
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Cruise Ship Attendant Resume Sample (Full Text Version)
- GPA 4.0 (Top 1% of the Program)
- The 2015 Academic Excellence Award winner
- Provided exceptional customer service and ensured guest satisfaction by promptly attending to their needs and requests, resulting in positive feedback and an increase in onboard service ratings.
- Managed and maintained cleanliness and hygiene standards across assigned areas, including cabins, public spaces, and dining areas, ensuring a pleasant and safe environment for guests.
- Assisted in emergency situations, such as evacuations or medical emergencies, by following established protocols and providing necessary support to ensure the safety and well-being of guests and crew members.
- Implemented safety protocols and conducted regular inspections to maintain a secure environment for passengers and crew members.
- Collaborated with team members to set up and maintain dining areas, entertainment venues, and recreational facilities, ensuring a smooth operation of onboard activities.
- Resolved guest concerns and inquiries promptly and professionally, utilizing strong communication and problem-solving skills to ensure guest satisfaction.
A Cruise Ship Attendant is responsible for ensuring an enjoyable and comfortable experience for passengers on a cruise ship. They assist guests with their needs, provide information about ship activities, and offer impeccable customer service. Attendants work in various departments, such as housekeeping, dining, or entertainment, to meet passengers' diverse requirements. They maintain cabins, serve meals, and help organize onboard events. Attention to detail, excellent communication skills, and a friendly demeanor are crucial for success in this role. Cruise Ship Attendants contribute significantly to passengers' satisfaction, enhancing their overall cruise experience.
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Royal Caribbean International Mock Interview
To help you prepare for a Royal Caribbean International job interview, here are 30 interview questions and answer examples.
Royal Caribbean International was updated by Kevin Downey on July 10th, 2023. Learn more here.
Question 1 of 30
Have you ever worked in a cross-functional environment?
What You Need to Know
1st entry level example, 1st answer example, 2nd answer example.
Cruise ships are heavily cross-functional since many departments and personnel often work closely together to ensure things run smoothly. Your interviewer is curious how adaptable you are to coordinating with others, and how you answer could offer insights into your interpersonal skills.
"Based on the nature of this position, it would seem that I would have to occasionally work with other related behind-the-scenes teams. I am a people person and have no problem working across teams. I consider myself an ambassador in every way. Also, if I were to venture into a common area and a passenger comes to me with a concern, I would make sure to direct them to someone who could help them, or find someone who could help them and send that person to them."
"I have worked in many cross-functional environments. Currently, I lead the dining service team and collaborate with the kitchen management and bartending staff very regularly. We all work well together to ensure an amazing dining experience for our guests."
"The cruise line which I currently work for is highly collaborative. We are a 'complete guest experience' organization, so we have meetings together with our casino, watersports, entertainment and excursions, dining staff, and also our cabin crew on a daily basis. Goals are clear, and we all understand how each department works to complement the other."
30 Royal Caribbean International Interview Questions & Answers
Table of Contents
- 1. Adaptability Questions
- 2. Behavioral Questions
- 3. Career Goals Questions
- 4. Compatibility Questions
- 5. Competency Questions
- 6. Conflict Questions
- 7. Customer Service Questions
- 8. Direct Questions
- 9. Discovery Questions
- 10. Diversity Questions
- 11. Education Questions
- 12. EQ Questions
- 13. Experience Questions
- 14. Job Satisfaction Questions
- 15. Problem Solving Questions
- 16. Salary Questions
- 17. Situational Questions
- 18. Stress Questions
- 19. Teamwork Questions
1. Have you ever worked in a cross-functional environment?
Written by Kevin Downey on July 8th, 2023
2. How do you feel about the Royal Caribbean International dress code and code of conduct?
As there are many unique requirements for rooming, boarding, and working months at sea, your interviewer is trying to determine whether you have a full comprehension of what the shipboard lifestyle working looks like. As detailed on their FAQs page about shipboard jobs, they explain that "As a team, we like to project a consistent and professional image; therefore, we have carefully chosen a uniform for most positions. Uniforms will be provided onboard and there are some uniform items that are considered personal items crew are required to pay for. Your recruiter or hiring partner will discuss this with you in more detail." Royal Caribbean International has a dress code for a variety of reasons, inclusing ensuring their crew can be easy to identify, especially concerning issues surrounding safety.
Written by Kevin Downey on July 9th, 2023
"I have no problem adhering to the dress code, and reviewed everything I could find online. The uniform items that are considered personal items, are those the pair of black pants, white shirt and a pair of comfortable black shoes that the website suggests one pack?"
"I have looked through your employee code of conduct and have seen your dress code online. I am happy to comply with both and find them very reasonable."
"I am sure that the code of conduct and employee dress code are very reasonable."
3. What interests you in working shipboard as opposed to shoreside?
You can find several value propositions on their website aiming to attract ideal candidates who would find the lifestyle of working onboard appealing. "Working on a ship is an opportunity to free yourself from the conventions and tedium of life on land. Gone are the days of sitting frustrated in traffic, or staring out the window at the same view. Each day with Royal Caribbean is a chance to wake up in a new place, interact with colleagues and guests from around the world and experience the ocean as your personal playground."
How to Prep
Before your interview, research everything you can about the lifestyle of working on a cruise ship. Many of these questions are answered on Royal Caribbean websites. Go in knowing yourself, and your pragmatic and emotional needs, all the pros and cons, and ask yourself whether this is the right lifestyle for you. Doing this in advance will fully prepare you for answering this question.
Entry Level Example
"After college, I did a lot of backpacking through Europe, among a few other places, and stayed at a lot of youth hostiles. I felt like I never really got enough of that. So I am excited about the prospects of this lifestyle, meeting new people and building something of a community with them. I am no stranger to hard work, and the opportunity to work and travel at the same time is right up my alley."
"When you have fewer demands on your time outside of work life, it allows for more down time. When I worked onshore, it seemed that I was always running errands, or that there was some demand on my personal time. Here I feel taken care of. With this life, I have more downtime. More time for me to recharge, to meditate. And there is no better way to meditate than staring out at the waves and watching the dolphins or flying fish, or watching the sunrise or set."
"I was never cut out for working a typical 9 to 5 job. When I got out of school, I travelled up to Alaska and worked at the fisheries, and those conditions were far more difficult than ship life. So I have a lot of experience rooming and boarding for work. I suppose I am something of a nomad at heart. It feels like I am always traveling someplace new. I love it."
4. How important is healthy living to you?
Royal Caribbean places a great deal of emphasis on ensuring their employees embrace healthy living. "Staying healthy is a priority for many of our team members, irrespective of where in the world their job might take them. As you travel to all the exciting places around the globe with us, we want to help ensure that you have access to all of the things that make a healthy lifestyle possible. Onboard our ships, we have a wide range of healthy food options that cater to every dietary need, as well as fully-equipped workout facilities. Whether you're taking a morning jog while enjoying a panoramic view of the open ocean, or discovering a new cuisine in an exotic port-of-call, a career with Royal Caribbean can be an opportunity to build a balanced lifestyle."
Why the Interviewer Asks This Question
Royal Caribbean requires a clean bill of health for at least two years before bringing someone onboard. This is likely to ensure that each employee is physically capable of performing the duties of their job, as well as having a decreased likelihood of presenting any medical emergencies that extend beyond the capabilities of their medical staff. Additionally, they acknowledge the impact staying active has on one's mental health, which can be impacted by living for months at sea. So go in prepared for this question, and confront the realities in your answer.
"Part of the allure of this job is that I would be getting a solid workout all day long when at work. Also, I workout pretty regularly, and enjoy going on long walks when there is a view to be enjoyed, usually walking on the beach. I can only dream of how incredible it must be going for walks on deck and taking in the sprawling ocean views."
"I am a regular jogger, and I love spending time at the gym. I also eat very healthy, and meditate as well. I am very focused on balancing mind, body, and spirit."
"Very important. I will participate in any activity available onboard. I love swimming laps in the pool and if I am not there you can find me in the crew gym."
5. What type of promotion, or long-term opportunities, would you be looking for from Royal Caribbean International?
Your interviewer is looking for candidates who are suited for this lifestyle, and who feel that their company culture is the right fit for them. The best method of assuring your interviewer of this is showcasing how thoroughly prepared you are for this interview. So spend time researching all of their positions, determine if there are other roles you might be interested in the future, and determine if you can imagine yourself enjoying a long-term career with Royal Caribbean. Take a look at the types of roles that you could work your way up to. As they advertise on their website, "We build the best ships, and even better careers, all while doing the right thing. We are passionate. We are innovative. We are unstoppable. We open the world to our employees. Your journey is our journey. Chart your own course."
"I'd totally be up to exploring further opportunities. I saw that many people who worked shoreside eventually moved into shipboard positions. I also thoroughly explored all the positions available. I feel as I enter this industry, this position would be the best fit for me, and I am interested in exploring more options once I have more experience living the lifestyle and building a community."
"Looking through the Royal Caribbean International website I see that you have a lot of opportunity for leadership growth which includes multiple management and director type of roles. I have a keen interest in the Director of Hospitality position you currently have posted. I know it would take some time for me to work my way into a role such as that; however, I am willing to do what it takes to get there. I am in this job search to find a long-term opportunity."
"I am interested in earning my way into a Cruise Assistant Director role over time. I know that it will take years of dedication and training, but I am passionate for career growth in the cruise industry and am willing to do what it takes. I read that you have an opening which requires more HR and personnel training than I currently have. Do you recommend a specific training path?"
6. Why do you want to work for Royal Caribbean International over other cruise lines?
Spend adequate time researching not only their entire company website, and not just their careers page, but also online reviews, and pages that detail how they stand apart from their competition. Learn everything you can about their company, and how they stand apart from their competitors. For example, on Royal Caribbean's blog, they cover this topic in an article titled, "What makes Royal Caribbean different from other cruise lines?" In this article, they say that they are a leader in offering more onboard activities, such as rock climbing, ice skating and surfing at sea. They also advertise they have the biggest cruise ships in the world, that they focus on families, and have they have greatest value for the cost of a ticket.
"My interest in working for Royal Caribbean International comes from the fact that I had an incredible experience on your cruise line a few years ago. When we got back to our port, I didn't want to get off. It was unforgettable. Your crew is upbeat and welcoming, and I would be proud to be a part of that as a representative of Royal Caribbean International."
"Your workplace culture, branding, and overall vibe have spoken loudly to me for a while now, over any of your competitors. I am excited about the possibility to create that sense of adventure for the passengers who trust Royal Caribbean International for their special holiday experiences. I also appreciate all the activities you offer your crew, and the size of your ships, and your fleet present more interesting travel opportunities and activities than other companies out there."
"I am very impressed with the size of your ships and the size of your fleet. Just looking at the shoreside and shipboard opportunities in the company, I feel like there is a lot of room for growth here. Right now the nomadic lifestyle being shipboard presents suits my lifestyle. But I don't know what the future would bring, so it is comforting to see all the shoreside opportunities you company offers as well."
View This Question and Answers
7. What do you expect from our workplace culture?
The interviewer is trying to gauge your understanding of what life shipboard looks like, and that you are capable of following through on your commitments. If you decide that you are not up to the task, and you are rooming with someone else, they are not going to turn the ship around to bring you home, and neither is it good for the crew morale to have someone who is discontent. If hired, you will need to sign a contract of employment, with stipulations specific to Royal Caribbean. For example, in some cases, depending on your location and the ship's location, you may need to fly to the nearest airport, which will be at the your expense for the first contract. "The company covers the cost of repatriation after your contract is concluded as long as you satisfy the basic requirements of your assignment."
It's vital to into your interview with realistic expectations, and not thinking that the job is all fun and games because you will be traveling around the world. Many pursue this opportunity for the money. From your interviewer's perspective, these are the wrong reasons, and they need to make sure you are doing it for the lifestyle, and the benefits such a lifestyle can bring. Discuss what you understand about their workplace culture aboard their cruise ships.
Here's a testimonial from one of their employees posted their website praising the lifestyle and the opportunity it brings; "I feel honored every time I walk through these doors, and I've had so many opportunities to grow and pave my own path. Our culture empowers each employee to discover the work that fulfills them, no matter where they start. The connections made here are rooted in support of each other and in a profound respect for the work we all do to deliver our products to our guests. No matter your background, you'll be known for the good that you do for your team, our communities, and Royal Caribbean Group's purpose." Also, before your interview, read the Royal Caribbean Blog post that offers "A look at the secret crew-only areas on the world's biggest cruise ship." Spend adequate time assembling the big picture of what it looks like spending months on board a ship with little time off and living in small quarters.
"I imagine it's tough and, at the same time, rewarding. I have no doubt there will be some growing pains as I get accustomed to working on a ship away from home and everything familiar, and I know that some days will be more emotionally challenging than others. But I am eager for the excellent training opportunities, new experiences, and the adventure this will bring. Once acclimated, I have no doubt I'll have trouble returning to life as I knew it, and will want nothing more than to get back onboard and launch off again."
1st Experienced Example
"It sure is a unique position to be in, working on a ship for long periods of time. It's not always fun and games like in movies, or that 70s TV show, The Love Boat. What I love is the sense of community, and going ashore when I can. I love the ease of the lifestyle, never really having to prepare my own meals, and having my free time being completely my own. I love the hard work. I love my sea legs."
2nd Experienced Example
"As I see it, the way of life onboard a ship is about community, and living with others in a place where you work, eat, sleep, and play, day in and day out. Yet at the same time you are traveling, or are at sea, and you are working together to make adventure happen. Working on a cruise ship is a unique experience, and not always fun or easy. I love putting in the hard work. It's all part of this ongoing, life-changing experience."
8. What would you say are your top three qualities?
When considering how to describe yourself, try to choose words that align with the identity of their brands. They describe their fleet as "the boldest cruise ships at sea." They describe the experience their passengers will have as an adventure. Additionally, the core values are Fairness, Integrity, Honest, and Trustworthiness. Lastly, they pride themselves on their code of ethics: "We take ownership for our actions." So when advertising your qualities to your interviewer, show you are aware of what it takes to be a successful employee at Royal Caribbean International, that you feel this is the right fit for you, and you the right fit for them.
"I would say that I am most happy when I have a sense of adventure in my life. I consider myself a bold adventurer. Aside from that, I'd say that I am a great listener, and am very fair and trustworthy. I would say I am an excellent communicator, and always hold myself accountable for my commitments and actions."
"I would say I am great at adapting to changing situations, am a quick problem solver, and I carry a positive attitude everywhere I go. I believe that I fit the bill in all three of these areas. My references could vouch for this as well."
"I have no doubt hiring cruise line staff is a difficult task. If I were in your shoes I'd want to find people who excel in customer service, who can handle the unique lifestyle and at the same time, stay as long-term as possible. I imagine the industry attracts more transient individuals that you would prefer. If I were hiring, I would look for someone dedicated to the hospitality industry, has a genuine interest in travel, and who wanted to work in a close-knit team environment. I would be sure to check references as well. Check my references and you'll see I'm all I say I'm cracked up to be, and meet all these qualifications."
9. Do you think you can sustain the cruise ship lifestyle for the long term?
The cruise ship lifestyle is a challenging one, especially considering that a person is expected to live shipboard for many months at a time. This is such a commitment that it requires a contract of employment, and most positions require a 6 to 9 month contract. They also want to ensure that you have the emotional intelligence required to stay balanced while prioritizing your health and wellbeing. "We understand the importance of health and wellbeing, and we provide the resources to help our employees live their happiest and healthiest lives. We offer a variety of health services at your fingertips, with a clinic, fitness classes, chiropractor and more, all on-site." So consider what you would do to endure any hardships that you could anticipate being committed to the long run. Discuss how you would manage this lifestyle for such long durations at a time.
"I spent time of lot of researching the cruise ship lifestyle and I believe it would suit me. I am highly energetic, and like keep busy. This position would only get better if I was granted the opportunity to do it long term."
"I do believe that I can sustain this lifestyle for the long term. I am an extrovert who loves gaining new experiences. I do not need a lot of downtime to recharge, and am known for my high levels of energy. With the correct training, I believe I can succeed in this role with Royal Caribbean International for the long term."
"I am no stranger to this lifestyle and it suits me well. To be honest, after trying a life shoreside, I just can't wait to get shipboard asgain. There's no place I'd rather be."
10. Describe the typical Royal Caribbean International customer, and the type of vacation they are seeking.
Royal Caribbean places a lot of emphasis on being a cruise line that offers adventure for the whole family, while offering great value at an affordable price. But they also try to appeal to singles and couples as well. "Whether you're traveling solo or vacationing with the whole extended family, you'll have all kinds of ahh-inducing cruise rooms to choose from, like affordable connecting staterooms that are perfect for groups, romantic rooms for couples craving rejuvenation and relaxation, and even a thrill-filled Ultimate Family Suite with a private game room and in-suite slide." Spend time on the commercial website and study the audiences they are marketing to. This will give you a broader sense of the kinds of passengers you'll be working among, and will inform your interviewer of how well prepared you are for the role.
"I assume anyone who want the option of comfort while often being able to explore varying destinations. I'd say every passenger has a little tourist and a little traveler in them. No doubt you get some singles and some couples onboard. With all the options for the family to enjoy together, and others to occupy the kids allowing the parents some alone time, I imagine it's families more than anything."
"I read online that the majority of your customers are upper-level income earners, mostly married, ages 45 and over. I also read that many of your customers come back for a cruise every three years which is an excellent rate considering the planning and cost associated with such elaborate vacations. I would say that your average customer is seeking a blend of adventure and luxury. Is this correct?"
"I have been on a couple of cruises through Royal Caribbean International and found that your cruises are very family oriented. My research tells me that your customers are seeking a vacation out of the ordinary, where they can leave their cares at home. It's been a while, but the last cruise line I worked on was more oriented to singles and was a bit more reserved and stuffy. This feel more of a good fit for me."
Anonymous Interview Answers with Professional Feedback
11. How would you handle a rude customer?
As they advertise online, your "access to guest areas will depend on your position." So encountering such a situation might prove rare, and if you aren't working in hospitality, often hearing out a customer's concerns, empathizing with them, and letting them know you will reach out to the appropriate party who can address their concern is sufficient. But look up their code of conduct and their core values, and customize your answer according to your position. Ultimately, you want to conduct yourself in such a way that preserves their reputation while taking ownership of the situation, and "strive to exercise the basic virtues of respect, dignity, courtesy."
"I have thick skin. I'm resilient, and in such situations remain calm, kind, and polite, regardless of their feelings. Their feelings are theirs and mine are mine. Also, it's amazing what a warm smile will accomplish."
"I would try to ignore the fact that they were being rude. If they were being abusive, I would excuse myself. But if they were just being rude, well, that's subjective, and they might not realize it. In which case, I would be courteous in return."
"When I was working as a bartender, I handled many rude customers, but that normally happened only after they were intoxicated. But that's just one circumstance. Normally when someone is rude, there's an underlying reason for it, and it rarely has anything to do with me. What's happening in me is typically that of calm, happiness, and perspective. So, I let it slide off my back. I just kept smiling, and doing my job! Smile, try to be helpful and act according to my character, and move on."
12. How would you go above and beyond to make a guests' vacation their best trip ever?
Familiarize yourself with Royal Caribbean's customer service philosophy, which they define as 'Delivering the Wow'. After studying their approach, spend time research your experience and the type of customer service you deliver, and determine how the two align. As they state online, "We go above and beyond to create a safe, healthy environment for guests and provide unforgettable cruise experiences. Our commitment to Gold Anchor Service and 'Delivering the Wow' echoes in every interaction, as we celebrate your achievements through recognition and career advancement. We firmly believe that great vacations begin with great employees. Join our team and start your own adventure."
"I know how I would like to be treated on my 'home away from home' and would start by remembering guests names, and their preferences. I would greet them with a smile every time. I would do my part in ensuring that every interaction was positive and friendly, with the hope that nothing would interrupt them having a great time."
"Customer service is one of my key strengths. I will commit to delivering the best service ever, ensuring a memorable trip, by providing more than just their basic needs. Asking a guest how their excursion was, helping them with any of their needs, and would always be on the lookout to go above and beyond and make their experience more memorable. I'd look forward to improving on my skills as well through any training Royal Caribbean International provides."
"I'd do everything I could to ensure all of our passengers were having an unforgettable cruise experience. I'd try to make sure through my every interaction that every step of their adventure was not only a wow experience, but a safe and healthy one as well. There our guests and I would want them to feel like welcome guests."
13. How would you rate your customer service skills?
Your interviewer would like assurance that you are trustworthy and that your conduct enhances their reputation. As they state in their core values, they "are devoted to making a difference." They go on to state, "When people choose to sail the world with us, we owe it to them to make their trips as relaxing, safe and healthy as possible. We honor their trust and loyalty by continually raising the bar."
How to Answer
Think of your customer service experience and how well you could perform according to your role. Depending on the role you'll be playing on a cruise line, with the number of passengers onboard, you may experience many interactions each day, around the clock, whether you are on duty or off duty. So answer this question by offering your interviewer your clear picture of the expectations before, then relay with sincerity that you are up to the task and would act according to their values.
"I am newer to my career but have taken a course in dispute resolution and strategic problem solving while attending university. My new business administration degree also offers a great deal of knowledge when it comes to savvy decision making and clear communication. I am confident in the knowledge that I possess and look forward to furthering my training with Royal Caribbean International."
"I have spent the past eight years in a hospitality environment, first with boutique hotels, and then in resort hotels. My customer service balances professionalism with personality, effective communication, and dispute resolution."
"I'd say my customer service skills are strong. I say this with confidence because I am generally a pretty happy guy with a really good attitude. I believe attitude is everything. And when you have a good outlook, and are generally happy, and people see that, they respond well to it, and being around happy people makes you happy. So if someone asks for my help, I sincerely want to help them, and they feel cared for. It's not rocket science. It's just kindness. Sail the world, and you're probably having a good time. So am I. It doesn;t take me anytime to earn someone's trust, and I consider it an honor every time."
14. How do you feel about living in shared accommodations while working on our ship?
Not only do cruise ship employees live in very tight quarters, but unless they are working directly with the captain or are entertainment, they often have to share accomodations with others. "Depending on your position you may share your cabin with a fellow crew member. Because space is limited onboard, cabins and bathrooms are relatively small compared to land-based accommodations, but don't worry there are plenty amenities for you to enjoy when you are off duty." Knowing that such confined quarters can be difficult for many individuals, your interviewer needs to know that you have a full picture of what this aspect of the lifestyle looks like. There are various YouTube videos out there that offer the full scope of the life of a cruise ship employee. Do your homework and come prepared to assure your interivewer that you have what it takes to thrive in such a living arrangement.
"I have had roommates in the past, but perhaps not in such proximity. So long as we remain respectful of each others' space, I see no problem living cozy for a few weeks. I consider myself as a friend to all, and am not that nit-picky. So I am confident I would make for a good roommate."
"Cabin crew living arrangements sound a great deal like the arrangements I had in university! I talked to a couple of people who worked on cruise ships, and they all say that it's tough for the first couple of weeks, but then you get used to it. I also heard that depending on the level I'm on, it could be loud from the engine hum or the water. I trust that Royal Caribbean International knows how to best pair employees when it comes to roommate situations. But I am adaptable and it shouldn't be a problem for me."
"I was in the Navy for four years, living on board a submarine. These accommodations seem luxurious in comparison."
15. To work with Royal Caribbean International, you will need to complete a full background check, along with a medical examination. Are you okay with this?
Make sure you go into your interview fully prepared. Don't let any question take you off guard. As detailed on their career pages, some of the prerequisites for employment is that "all Royal Caribbean Group's brands' crew members are required to Pass a criminal background check," and need to "complete an extensive pre-employment medical examination prior to joining the ship. In most cases, the examination is at the employees' expense. The examination should be conducted through one of RCG's approved medical facilities. Once the medical examination is complete and approved by our corporate medical department, employees will be cleared to travel. This medical documentation will then be valid for two years. Your recruiter or hiring partner will discuss this with you in more detail." If you do have any marks on your record, now is the time to mention it. The more transparent you are, the more trustworthy you will seem. This also offers you an opportunity to offer context to those marks.
"I am happy to comply with any background and medical checks required to work for Royal Caribbean International. I appreciate that you are very careful who you employ, as I realized that your staff is privy to sensitive information and situations."
"I will agree to any background checks that you require. I should disclose to you that I had knee surgery three years ago; however, I have the all-clear from my doctor to perform work functions as per normal. I can walk and stand for long periods of time, and can lift 75 pounds, repeatedly."
"I am happy to undergo any prequalifications required of me. I am familiar with the process and am ready and willing."
16. If you could set sail to any place in the world, where would you go, and why?
This question explores your interest in travel, and how fully you have explored the destinations offered by Royal Caribbean Groups' multiple brands. Royal Caribbean International explored a variety of destinations in the following locales: Mexico, South Pacific, Latin America, Bahamas, Caribbean, Europe, Transpacific, Bermuda, Pacific Northwest, Panama Canal, Transatlantic, Alaska, Australia & New Zealand, Asia, Canada & New England, Arabian Gulf, and Hawaii. So share with them your zeal for travel, within the boundaries of their destinations and beyond. Have fun with this question, showcasing your personality while trying to spark conversation with your interviewer. Ask them where they have travelled, and where they'd like to explore next.
"I would love to sail to as many exotic island destinations as possible. I've been to Hawaii and Bermuda, but I love to go to Bora Bora and Rapa Nui next."
"I have a bucket list, actually, and would love to tell you about it! A couple of years ago I made a list of the most fascinating UNESCO World Heritage sites and decided that I would choose one from North America, Central America, the Caribbean, South America, Africa, Asia, and Europe. So far, I have visited Leon Cathedral in Nicaragua, and Ephesus in Turkey. Next, I am planning for the Paleolithic Caves in Spain. It's important to me that I am well traveled and exposed to what our beautiful world has to offer."
"I love to travel and have had many great opportunities in the past few years. If I could choose any destination for my next, I would pick to stay at the Icehotel in Jukkasjarvi, Sweden. It's so interesting to me that I could stay in a hotel carved entirely out of ice. Also, the town has historic buildings to explore, such as an old church dating back to approximately 1607."
17. Do you have any special interests or hobbies?
This question is more than a 'getting to know you' question. They are also trying to determine how in line with your hobbies are with the lifestyle that comes with being shipboard. If you enjoy mountain biking and hiking, this opportunity might not be the right fit for you. So consider the hobbies you love that complement the lifestyle they offer.
"When you are not on duty, you are welcome to explore the amazing destinations we visit. If space is available, employees are welcome to enjoy excursions at a discounted price. We believe in creating a fun work environment. We have a crew activities team onboard each ship in charge of hosting different events for our crew. From parties to sport tournaments, all activities are designed for our crew to enjoy life onboard. Each ship is equipped with a crew gym. We encourage you to take advantage of it and work out at your leisure. There are different types of areas where you can socialize with your colleagues, including the crew bar, and other lounges and common crew areas."
"I love to meditate. I also love yoga. I love to read, and write as well. Especially poetry. Would you like to hear one of my poems? It's about the mystery of the sea."
"I have many hidden talents! I love to act, sing, and dance. If you think I could incorporate that into a bartending act, we could be onto something! Seriously though, I am interested in a multitude of topics and am happy to fill in where needed."
"I grew up playing basketball and was the captain of my college basketball team. I learned a lot about leadership, healthy competition, and being a team player. I am open to trying new things and, should you need someone to help with the sports and activities side of your program, I could be an excellent resource."
18. The crew of Royal Caribbean International greatly ranges in background, ethnicity, and culture. Tell me about your exposure to diversity.
Royal Caribbean Group is a worldwide company, with shoreside offices and fleet destinations stretching the globe. "Our culture reflects our global nature. We're committed to celebrating diversity and inclusion. We are proud of the way our team members from different cultural backgrounds, generations, races, ethnicities, religions, education levels, sexual orientation, gender, and disabilities come together to create incredible vacation and employee experiences! The diversity of our employees plays a major role in our success."
Considering that you will be working side by side with other members of the crew who come from a wide variety of backgrounds, perhaps even sharing a room with them, your interviewer needs to ensure you have cultural competence and aren't going to experience culture clash resulting in communication breakdowns. The more well traveled you are, or the more diverse your background or experience of working with diversity, the better. So share your experience and cultural competence to offer the assurance your interviewer needs that you have the social skills to build relationships and earn the trust of your teams.
"One of the reasons why I am so interested in working for Royal Caribbean International is the fact that you do embrace diversity so much. I want to know people different from me and expand my knowledge far beyond my own backyard. I look forward to meeting your diverse crew!"
"I understand that the crew at Royal Caribbean International will represent nearly any culture I could imagine. I genuinely enjoy getting to know those who are different from me and learning from them. My time in university, I was exposed to people of all different beliefs and lifestyles. I have also traveled around the world, giving me valuable exposure to a variety of cultures and experiences."
"I've done a lot of travel. What is most enlightening when veering out of the tourist traps and going where the locals are, and eating where the locals eat, is that you are the minority and are immersed in their culture. So you have to be sensitive to their culture, and sensitive to the fact that there is a chance you might inadvertently come across as disrespectful or ignorant. Misunderstandings happen. But if you are respectful, and tell your story, and are humble, you can find a way to show them who you are, and show them your true intentions. That of wanting to learn more about them and their experience. Sharing your curiosity. So now apply that perspective to someone who is immersed in your culture. Experience both sides and become culturally competent, and have a deeper understanding. This makes you want to learn more about their culture, their viewpoints, their perspectives from where they come from, to the hardships they've experienced. It doesn't matter if they were raised in this country or another. Culture is everywhere. Just be open, sensitive, and communicative. Be yourself."
19. Are you bilingual?
Considering how diverse their crew and passengers are, including their varying destinations, being bilingual in most cases is not a requirement of employment, but is definitely desired. As they state on their site, "English is the official language onboard our vessels, therefore, all employees must be able to read, write and speak English. Some positions have specific language requirements, but (in general) English is sufficient. However, because of our international guests and exciting itineraries, it is helpful if you speak additional languages, including (but certainly not limited to): Italian, German, French, and Spanish. Additional language skills are always a plus!"
Share any additional languages you speak, ranking your skill level, to give the interviewer a firm idea of what to expect. If you are willing to learn additional languages, share this as well.
"I speak a little Spanish, or should I say, un poco. I took the Pimsleur method on and off for a while. If I were to brush up on it, I could carry on some pretty rudimentary conversations at speed."
"I primarily speak English, although I am a beginner in both Mandarin and German. I took both languages in high school for a few semesters, allowing me to understand basic phrases. If you think it would be helpful, I can commit to learning these languages on a deeper."
"I come from an English and Spanish speaking home, so am fluent in both languages. Because I speak Spanish, I also pick up on the other romantic languages quite quickly. If there are other languages you would like me to study; I am happy to attempt to learn those as well."
20. Do you have demands from your personal life that would make traveling for months at a time difficult?
As detailed on their site, "a contract ranges anywhere from three to approximately eight months, depending on the position. Most senior management roles have 4-month contracts while most of the rest of the positions have 6-8 month contracts." So, to help them attract and retain top talent, Royal Caribbean advertises that they "maintain a world-class compensation and benefits package that's among the most generous in our industry. In addition, we go to extra lengths to support the health and wellbeing of our employees at work and at home."
Often out for weeks or months at a time, all employees are expected to "live onboard for the total length of their contracts." So, your interviewer needs assurances that you have thoroughly thought through whether this opportunity is the right fit for you. They are only interested in bringing you onboard if you can "satisfy the basic requirements of your assignment." So examine your lifestyle, and any personal demands or family matters that could potentially complicate living shipboard and being away for long periods of time. Come fully prepared to answer this question honestly. The only way to do this with sincerity is first being completely honest with yourself.
"I have already prepared my family for the fact that I may be away for a few months at a time. They are very excited for me and think this will be an unforgettable experience. I am not new to travel so being away from home will not be an issue for me, regarding homesickness, for instance."
"I have already lined up care for my dog, and a temporary housemate to help me with the cost of rent and home maintenance while I am away. This opportunity is a great one for me and those who matter the most, fully understand how important it is that I succeed and feel supported. Everyone is doing their part to make it work."
"I live a pretty simple lifestyle with few attachments. I have lived away from my parents and siblings for years now, so there's no problem there. As for my apartment, I Airbnb it while I am away and have reliable cleaners check in on it and take care of it. So there is nothing holding me back."
21. Have you ever planned an international vacation?
With the number of destinations they visit per cruise, and the varying activities available to passengers at each destination, your interviewer is curious whether you have any experience creating an itinerary, and whether you would be helpful in offering recommendations to passengers. Whether on a cruise or other modes of travel, discuss where you have vacationed, and your experiences. Detail the thought you put into planning your trip, how successful your planning was, and the experiences that came from it.
"I backpacked through Europe just out of college. I knew which countries I planned on traveling and in what order. But frequently I made friends along the way and those plans changed in lieu of new ones. So, I am typically pretty flexible when it comes to such things."
"I have not been lucky enough to do any international travel. I have planned a 12-week US-wide road-trip in the past, right after I graduated from university. One of the reasons why I am so excited to work for Royal Caribbean International is for the international travel opportunities. I realize that I will not be vacationing per se; however, to even be able to see these places all over the world briefly, is enough for me."
"I have planned two international vacations before. One was a cruise for myself and my parents, with Royal Caribbean International actually. I used a travel agent to ensure that all of the details were perfect. We had an excellent time exploring the ship, the port towns, and took in a few excursions. The other simpler vacation I planned, I booked online by myself. It was a resort vacation in Costa Rica."
22. Have you ever been on a cruise? What was your experience?
This question is more likely to be posed to those who are new to this lifestyle. However, even for the more experienced candidate, it helps to have at some point been a customer and experienced cruise life from that perspective. So if you have been on a cruise before, describe your experience. What stood out to you the most? If you never have, that's fine as well. Share your enthusiasm for taking advantage of the employee cruise benefits as well. As they detail on their careers site, you'll be able to enjoy "employee discounts on cruises, and a complimentary cruise for employees upon starting with the company."
"Although I have never been on a cruise vacation, I have read about them on a variety of travel blogs and performed a great amount of research before coming here today. I look forward to learning more about the ways that Royal Caribbean International creates unforgettable experiences for their guests."
"I had a family reunion on a cruise and it was a blast. I was younger, in my teens, and spent my fair share of time in the arcade. But mostly when I wanted to take a break away from family, I would find a spot on the aft of the ship and watch the ocean and the wake of the propeller. I'd watch the flying fish. Watch the sunset. It was pretty magical. There is no doubt I would take advantage of every employee perk and enjoy every cruise from behind the scenes and as a customer."
"I was on a Christmas family cruise a couple of years ago with Royal Caribbean International. My experience was so wonderful, that is when I vowed to come back as an employee one day. I loved the variety and that I could spend nearly every day in a new city or country, exploring the culture and trying new things. I am excited to help give this opportunity to the guests of Royal Caribbean International."
23. Are you CPR and First Aid certified?
Be transparent with this question, whether you are CPR and First Aid certified or not. If you are, bring your certification with you to the interview, regardless of whether your certificates are expiring soon. If you are not certified, express your willingness to do so before the desired hire date. However, the training crew members receive before boarding is typically thorough and often provided by Royal Caribbean International, and such training is revisited and ongoing. "New crew members are trained in emergency response procedures with specific training modules for each functional area. They also participate in ongoing drills and pre-departure safety training. CPR training in the morning followed by the weekly crew drill, during which crew members practice the ship's safety procedures."
"My CPR certificate expired. But I was a lifeguard every summer in school and was on the swim team. In fact, in those days, I sometimes led the training course funded by the school. So getting certified again wouldn't be a problem for me."
"I am not currently CPR or First Aid certified; however, I have researched options close to me and have found a couple of courses that begin next week. I am eager to work for Royal Caribbean International and will do what it takes to be a viable candidate."
"I have valid CPR and First Aid certifications which I have brought with me today. Would you like to take a copy for my candidate file?"
24. Which area of our ship do you have the most interest in working?
With an interest in fostering greater employee retention, your interviewer is curious if you have aspirations to grow within the company beyond the position you are applying for. You can see in their recruiting efforts their ideal candidates are those who see a long-term future with them. "Journey with us. Chart your own course." So spend time reading all the employee testimonials they post on their careers pages to get an idea of the types of candidates they are looking for. Those who feel they belong, appreciate the lifestyle, and who are invested in the long-term employment opportunities there.
Here's one testimonial of many from Royal Caribbean's careers pages: "I feel honored every time I walk through these doors, and I've had so many opportunities to grow and pave my own path. Our culture empowers each employee to discover the work that fulfills them, no matter where they start. The connections made here are rooted in support of each other and in a profound respect for the work we all do to deliver our products to our guests. No matter your background, you'll be known for the good that you do for your team, our communities, and Royal Caribbean Group's purpose."
"I am very much interested in growing within the company. However, as this would be a new experience for me, I think I would like to get a feel for what each department is like and talk to my potential coworkers first. I feel as if that's the best way to determine the right fit for me."
"I have a background in security and surveillance. When I saw that you have an opening for a Surveillance Operator, I knew I had to apply. I have formal STCW training (Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping) and am passionate for the hospitality industry."
"I have a solid background in food and beverage, with many years of bartending as well as upscale dining service. I could fit well with any position in the F&B department."
25. When a problem requires a quick solution, how do you respond?
Your interviewer is curious how capably you think on your feet and how quickly you react when confronted with difficult, game changing situations. How you answer will help them determine if you feel overwhelmed in such situations and experience task paralysis or task procrastination. Or, if you adapt and start making informed decisions and taking calculated risks to reduce the impact when things don't go according to plan. As they say on their website, "we must push ourselves to the limits of innovation and creativity, while acknowledging that the most efficient path forward may not exist yet." Demonstrate that you are competent and able to react swiftly when the need arises and walk the interviewer through your approach to making quick decisions when under pressure.
"I can think quickly on my feet. As Patton said, a good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow. Sure, it's natural to feel a little emotionally overwhelmed when things get more complicated than you'd prefer, but just process and move forward. Stammering isn't going to make your problems go away. Only actionable steps and a clear head can do that."
"As a customer service agent in the cruise line industry, I need to make a multitude of decisions, on the fly, for a variety of guests at a time. I rely partially on the instinct that I have built as an expert in the service industry and part in past travel experiences that may be similar. I am sure always to exude an air of control and confidence when making decisions."
"I thrive under pressure and always have, so when I'm given a time-sensitive situation to address, I light up and get down to business. I am more impactful and even more creative when I have little time to do much besides jump in and take charge. This ability to make fast decisions is especially helpful in the cruise industry when there is a customer service issue or an emergency."
26. How much do you think this job should pay?
Royal Caribbean Group offers all of their employees their "total Rewards Package. At Royal Caribbean Group, we are propelled by people, which means we are committed to investing in our employees on every level. We offer a competitive total rewards package that includes pay, health and wellness, career development, educational opportunities, savings, cruising perks and discounts, and more." Additional perks include (for on shore and shipboard employees), , paid time off, 401(k), employee stock purchase plan, parental paid leave, adoption assistance, pet insurance, cruising benefits, tuition and certificate reimbursement and retail discount.
Negotiating pay always comes down to an equation of substantiating your professional worth, and how their combined offerings ultimately reduce your cost-of-living expenses. So, if you are applying for a position shipboard, negotiating pay may be a bit more complicated, considering that life working on board a cruise ship includes free meals, room, and board. It also includes free activities, such as free gym access and free travel. Your experience level, current and projected pay at your current job, your interview performance, your work ethic conveyed through your interview preparation, and the unique skills you have to offer will equate to your professional worth. However, examining their pay range, and where you fall in that range based on your education and hands on experience, and how your current pay and benefits and cost-of-living compares to what you stand to gain from living shipboard, is a trickier equation than most other employment opportunities. So do your homework. Come prepared to present, with sincerity, what you believe you are worth. By doing so, you'll be placing the ball in their court and create the right atmosphere for open negotiation.
"I am newer to my career, so I performed some research on the topic, hoping to gain an understanding of the average pay for service staff on a cruise line. The average I saw was $22,000 per contract, depending on experience. Although I have no prior experience working on a cruise line, I am no stranger to working long hours and performing consistently with a strong work ethic. When I equate the cost-of-living expenses involved with this lifestyle and compare it to my own, I would say this seems fair."
"I took note of the pay range detailed in the job posting. Based on my experience and performance level, I would say I fall in the upper-mid-level of that pay range."
"I am currently earning $15/hour plus travel benefits and a robust health care plan. I am up for a raise to $17/hour in the next couple of months. I've read online that someone of my experience level would be the equivalent of $17-19/hour with the health and travel benefits."
27. Tell me about your experience working around children.
Royal Caribbean International sets themselves apart from their other brands in how focussed on families they are. Offering youth facilities for all ages, from babies and tots programs, child approved care, youth programs, activities for kids and teens, their award-winning adventure youth programs, arcades, teen clubs, and their teens and tweens programs, to name a few. So when on deck, or enjoying an excursion, you will encounter families with children of all ages. So your interviewer is curious how kid friendly you are to ensure this opportunity with this brand is the right fit for you.
"I like kids. They're fine. I'm not unfriendly to them, nor dislike children or anything like that. When it comes to encountering kids in a work environment, I would say that I am kind and trustworthy, boundaried, and professional."
"I have not had direct work experience with children; however, I am the oldest of four siblings, and did a lot of free babysitting for my parents growing up! I am a kid at heart and enjoy making kids laugh. I can assure you that I would work very hard to make the kids club experience at Royal Caribbean International a safe and memorable one."
"I have worked as a babysitter since I was 12 years old. I have been a volunteer for Girl Guides a few years running as well. I have worked with kids in outdoor adventure programs, water programs, and also activities such as crafts and cooking. Most of the kids I have worked with are ages 4-9; although, I believe that I can make any day fun for all ages!"
28. Working on a cruise line means working long hours and being able to cope with fatigue. How adept are you at managing stress?
As they detail on their website, not only will you be living where you work, but "because ships have guests onboard 7 days a week, you may not get a 24-hour period off; however, you will still have time to rest, visit the ports, and participate in fun events." However, since many of your modest amenities will be provided for you, including prepared meals, there is less demand on your free time than in more conventional employment situations. However, they place a lot of emphasis on the work life balance of their employees, and want to make sure you have the tools and coping mechanisms to thrive in a lifestyle such as theirs. So, after examining your priorities and what contributes to your quality of life and job satisfaction, if this still feels like a good fit, assure your interviewer that you can handle yourself with professionalism and poise. Share the tools you employ to cope, decompress, and eliminate stress.
"I find this kind of work as meditative. I enjoy doing it. And considering how I would be immersed in a water wonderland, constantly exploring wondrous new destinations, I can't imagine a more meditative situation than that."
"I am no stranger to extended periods of stress. I have worked internationally in the past, away from all family and friends. I have also worked in high-pressure retail sales environments. When I feel added pressure, I will ask to take a quick breather if possible. Most of the time, removing myself from the situation for just a couple of minutes will help. If that is not possible, I will run through a list in my head of all the good things that happened that day. I find that when I stop dwelling on the stressors, and more on the positives, things turn around for me."
"I have been under extended periods of stress before, from my time in University and earning a double degree, to working in the service industry in busy and high-pressure environments. When I am feeling extra stressors, I will take a minute to collect myself with a few deep breaths, and remind myself of the positive things I experienced that day. Taking myself back into a mentality of gratitude always helps."
29. How comfortable do you feel you could cope with an emergency situation while at sea?
Royal Caribbean International takes the safety and health of their passengers very seriously. So your interview needs to ensure you would follow every recommended safety practice. They also need assurances you would keep a level head in the event of an emergency, while prioritize maintaining calm while ensuring the safety of your passengers. "In the unlikely case of an emergency, we need to be ready. Therefore, all crew members must attend emergency training and are required to participate in boat drills. Every crew member is assigned an emergency duty, which they will be trained on and practice during regular boat drills." If you have prior experience or training in cruise line emergencies, discuss this training with the interviewer.
"I've been in a few crises or emergency situations before. My defense mechanism in such situations is to compartmentalize and objectify the situation. So, I am consistently very calm under duress. In fact, once the situation is passed, a few hours later it will only then hit me, and then at that point I'll think, wow, that was something. But you'll find I have a pretty level head when such situations arise."
"I understand that ships have special emergency procedures that all cabin and crew are trained on before setting sail. It's important to remain calm and in control during these situations, to avoid any panic and unnecessary chaos. Although I have no training on cruise ship emergency management, I do believe that the first step would be to guide everyone to the muster point and start suiting the most vulnerable guests with lifejackets first."
"I have been training in emergency response and would follow these steps. First, remaining calm, I would help guide our guests to the muster station. Next, I would suit up the guests with lifejackets, starting with the children and their parents. I would then carefully follow the steps given to me by the captain, depending on the nature of the emergency."
30. Describe your working relationship with your previous or current colleagues.
In a cruise ship environment, you are working very closely with your co-workers, day in and day out, and in most cases, living in close quarters with them as well. Your interviewer aims to assess your ability to thrive in such an environment while building successful, long-lasting relationships. "Working onboard is a great opportunity not only to grow professionally but also to make friends from all over the world. While different cultures act differently and sometimes it takes time to adjust, we believe that being open and respectful always leads to good relationships. Communication is usually the key to get along." So talk about how you built relationships with previous coworkers, spending time within them inside and outside the bounds of work.
"I am still very close friends with most of the people I worked with at my previous jobs. In fact, the last house I rented I shared with three of my coworkers. So working with and living with my coworkers, who I'd rather describe as my friends, is in my comfort zone."
"Our team is amazing! We support each other when customers are a bit cranky, we help each other reach the ships' sales targets and goals, and we help to cover when someone needs a few hours off. I understand that Royal Caribbean International offers a collaborative workplace culture similar to this, which is why I was motivated to apply here."
"All of the colleagues I have worked with have shared a very respectful relationship. We have similar goals and challenges, and we exchange knowledge to accomplish those things to the best we can. Each of us has a part in the company's success, and we utilize communication to make it happen."
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The ultimate guide to Royal Caribbean cruise ships and itineraries
For megaresort lovers, Royal Caribbean may be the ultimate cruise line.
The line's biggest ships are bigger than any other cruise vessels afloat, and they're chock-full of more restaurants, bars, entertainment zones and attractions than you'll find anywhere else at sea — or even at many of the biggest land resorts.
On Royal Caribbean's giant Oasis-class ships, there are multiple pool areas, watery play zones, rock climbing walls, surfing simulators, miniature golf courses, basketball courts and even zip lines. And that's just on the top deck. Interior areas bring everything from full-size spas and large casinos to Broadway-quality theaters with top-name shows.
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Some Royal Caribbean ships even feature ice skating rinks. Really.
If all that seems like too much to fit on a cruise vessel, consider this: The biggest Royal Caribbean ships are 18 decks high, nearly 1,200 feet long and capable of carrying nearly 7,000 passengers.
In short, they're like the megaresorts you see in Las Vegas or Orlando. Except they float.
3 Things TPG loves about Royal Caribbean
- The incredible array of onboard activities.
- The over-the-top super suites on some ships.
- The top-notch entertainment, including Broadway shows.
What we could do without
- Sold-out shows, particularly in onboard comedy clubs.
The Royal Caribbean fleet
Royal Caribbean is the world's largest cruise line by passenger capacity, with 26 ships that together offer more than 94,000 berths.
The ships include the world's five biggest cruise vessels — Wonder of the Seas , Symphony of the Seas , Harmony of the Seas , Allure of the Seas and Oasis of the Seas — each of which can hold more than 6,600 passengers. Similar in design, these five ships are known as the Oasis class, and they are unlike anything else at sea when it comes to size, amenities and passenger capacity.
One more Oasis-class ship — Utopia of the Seas — is scheduled to join the fleet in 2024.
The Oasis-class ships are not the only biggies in the Royal Caribbean fleet. Five big Quantum Class ships and three big Freedom Class ships each have total capacities ranging from around 4,500 to 5,600 passengers.
Add those in, and Royal Caribbean operates 13 of the world's 30 biggest cruise ships.
Related: 4 things you'll love about Royal Caribbean's Odyssey of the Seas
The line also operates five somewhat smaller Voyager Class vessels that can each hold around 3,800 passengers at maximum occupancy.
Together, the 18 Oasis, Quantum, Freedom and Voyager class vessels make up Royal Caribbean's big-ship fleet.
The line's remaining eight vessels, split among two classes, are relatively smaller, with maximum occupancy topping out at around 2,500 passengers.
While not necessarily the focus at Royal Caribbean, these smaller ships, which in general are the line's older ships, allow it to offer itineraries to places that aren't as easy for big ships to visit. Not all ports in the world can handle a ship the size of Wonder of the Seas.
The smaller ships also appeal to a subset of Royal Caribbean fans who like a little more intimacy in a cruise vessel and don't mind giving up some onboard amenities to get it. These ships are also often less expensive for travelers on a per-day basis.
With each step-down in size, you'll find fewer restaurants, bars, entertainment offerings and attractions. However, even the smallest of Royal Caribbean ships still have quite a bit to offer.
Meanwhile, in just over a year, Royal Caribbean will begin to roll out a series of cruise ships even bigger than the giant Oasis-class vessels . To be called the Icon class, it'll be made up of at least three vessels that each measure more than 250,000 tons.
The first Icon class vessel, Icon of the Seas, will debut in January 2024.
Related: The 9 most exciting new cruise ships of 2023
Destinations and itineraries
Royal Caribbean sails almost everywhere in the world, but its heaviest presence is in the Caribbean and Europe. In a typical summer, the line will deploy about half its ships on sailings to the Caribbean, Bahamas and Bermuda while sending another six or seven ships to Europe. The line typically sends three to four ships every summer to Alaska.
During the winter, the line will move even more of its ships to the Caribbean and send a few to Asia and Australia.
In recent years, Royal Caribbean has deployed one or more ships to China for sailings aimed at the Chinese market. One of the line's newest ships, Spectrum of the Seas , has offered trips for Chinese travelers out of Shanghai and Tianjin, China (the port for Beijing). Note that such voyages are on hold of late due to travel restrictions in China related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In North America, Royal Caribbean ships generally sail out of PortMiami , Port Canaveral , Fort Lauderdale's Port Everglades and Tampa in Florida; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Galveston, Texas; Bayonne, New Jersey (one of the ports for New York City); Baltimore; Boston; Seattle; Vancouver, British Columbia and Seward, Alaska. In 2021, the line introduced sailings out of Barbados .
In Europe, Royal Caribbean ships mostly sail out of Southampton, England; Amsterdam; Copenhagen; Stockholm; Barcelona; Civitavecchia, Italy (the port for Rome) and — since 2021 — Ravenna, Italy (which replaced Venice as a home port).
Related: The 5 best destinations you can visit on a Royal Caribbean ship
Who sails Royal Caribbean?
For the most part, Royal Caribbean operates big, bustling megaships that will appeal to people who like a megaresort experience. In other words, if you're the kind of person who loves staying on property at Disney World or at a giant Las Vegas resort, this is the line for you. Royal Caribbean ships offer vacationers a ton of options, whether it be for dining (some vessels have more than 20 distinct places to grab a bite) or entertainment. They are lively and fun.
That said, they also offer serene spots. You can enjoy a quiet afternoon reading a book on a bench in the tree-lined Central Park area of Wonder of the Seas while, just a few decks above, thousands of vacationers frolic away at the ship's three distinct pool areas. Royal Caribbean's designers are masters at designing vessels that can carry thousands and thousands of people but still feel relatively uncrowded — at least in some areas.
Insider tip: To escape the bustle on a Royal Caribbean ship, seek out the relatively quiet Solarium. It's an adult-only, deck-top retreat found on every Royal Caribbean vessel.
Royal Caribbean ships offer an inordinate amount of teen- and tween-friendly attractions — everything from some of the largest waterslides at sea to bumper car pavilions. That makes them particularly appealing to families, including multigenerational groups. Families are a big part of Royal Caribbean's business.
It's not just families that flock to Royal Caribbean, though. The line's ships are designed to provide a little something for everyone, and they appeal to a wide demographic, including couples of all ages and even solo travelers (the line has added solo cabins to more ships in recent years).
The ships also draw customers from a wide range of incomes. Plentiful smaller and affordable cabins, included casual dining options, and a plethora of bars and onboard attractions give Royal Caribbean ships a for-the-masses feel and make them accessible to travelers on a budget.
Also, overlaid across most ships are high-end suites, eateries and services that are at a luxury level, and the line draws a good number of luxury-seeking travelers. Royal Caribbean executives like to say that if they carved out all the suites on their ships as a separate business, it would be the largest luxury cruise line in the world.
What Royal Caribbean cruisers all have in common is that they love a big, bustling resort experience.
Cabins and suites
Royal Caribbean is known for offering a wide range of accommodations on its ships. Some ships have as many as 34 categories of cabins. You'll find everything from relatively low-cost, windowless inside cabins measuring just 149 square feet (perfect for the budget traveler) to massive, multi-room suites that are more than 10 times that size.
Related: The ultimate guide to Royal Caribbean cabins and suites
At the high end, the accommodations are aimed at well-heeled travelers who, for whatever reason, prefer the megaship experience to being on a luxury ship, and these truly are among the most spectacular accommodations at sea. Some, such as the Royal Loft Suites found on Oasis-class ships, are two decks high with sweeping views across the top of the vessel.
Depending on the ship, top suites can come with such perks as private butlers (called Royal Genies) who attend to your every need, access to a private restaurant, access to a private suite lounge and sun deck, reserved seating in entertainment venues and priority boarding and disembarkation.
Related: What it takes to get concierge lounge access on a cruise ship
Restaurants and dining
While a few of Royal Caribbean's smallest ships have relatively limited dining options, most of the line's vessels offer so many choices that it can almost be overwhelming.
On Royal Caribbean's Oasis-class ships there are more than 20 places to grab a bite, ranging from Johnny Rockets diners to high-end restaurants serving six-course tasting menus.
Every vessel has a main dining room and a casual buffet eatery where meals are included in the fare — the latter called either Windjammer Café or Windjammer Marketplace. For dinner in the main dining room, you must sign up for either My Time Dining, which is where you go whenever you want, or Traditional Dining, where you have a fixed table and time for dinner.
Other included-in-the-fare offerings found on some ships include Sorrento's pizza parlors, the Mediterranean cuisine-themed Solarium Bistro and the coffee bar Cafe Promenade.
In addition, every ship has a least one — and sometimes many — extra-charge eateries. The most common one found across the fleet is Chops Grille, the line's signature steakhouse. Many ships also have an Italian eatery, called either Giovanni's Table or Jamie's Italian by Jamie Oliver. There's also Hooked Seafood, a relatively new concept now on three vessels (Wonder of the Seas, Symphony of the Seas and Navigator of the Seas) that serves lobster rolls, fish sandwiches and the like.
On some ships, you'll also find Izumi, a sushi-serving Asian eatery; Vintages, a small bite-serving wine bar; imaginative cuisine-serving Wonderland; and Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade, which offers cold brews, burgers and wings along with games like foosball.
There are full-blown Starbucks cafes on some ships or at least a Starbucks stand.
In addition, some ships feature private restaurants just for passengers staying in suites along with top-tier members of the line's Crown & Anchor Society loyalty program .
Some of the extra-charge eateries come with a flat fee, usually around $35 to $50 per person, not including the cost of drinks. Others are a la carte.
If you know you want to eat at a few extra-charge restaurants during your voyage, you can buy one of several dining packages that offer meals at a discount.
Related: The 9 best meals you can have at sea
Entertainment and activities
No other cruise line has as broad a range of entertainment and activities on its ships as Royal Caribbean. As noted above, the line's biggest vessels offer multiple entertainment venues, from theaters to comedy clubs; all manner of deck-top attractions; large casinos; full-service spas; and even ice skating rinks. Plus, you'll find more bars, lounges and nightspots than you could think possible.
Theaters and shows
One of Royal Caribbean's great strengths is its theater entertainment, which can be mind-blowing at times — i.e., you won't believe you're seeing what you're seeing on a cruise ship.
Many of Royal Caribbean's biggest ships have state-of-the-art theaters as big as you'll find on Broadway, with top-name Broadway shows. Symphony of the Seas has "Hairspray," for instance, and Oasis of the Seas has Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Cats."
In some cases, the shows are cut down slightly (though some still run nearly two hours), and the casts aren't the A-team you'll find on Broadway. However, these are quality productions. The best part is — they are entirely free. Compare that with the hundreds of dollars you'll spend to take your family to a show in New York City.
Even more "wow," as Royal Caribbean executives like to say, are the ice skating shows put on at the ice skating rinks found on 13 of the line's ships. The rinks are in the interiors of the ships, surrounded by stadium seating for up to 775 people, and the shows are out of this world.
The line has hired Olympic-level skaters to star in the productions. In fact, the line likes to boast that it employs more world-class professional skaters than any other company in the world.
On Oasis-class ships, there also are 735-seat outdoor "aqua theaters" that are home to dazzling aerial and water shows. Quantum-class ships have Two70, an extraordinary, high-tech theater space that offers multi-sensory shows combining singing, dancing and acrobatics.
Some ships also have comedy clubs, and there's always live music in multiple venues nightly. We're particularly fond of the two-deck-high Music Halls on Quantum-class vessels.
Insider tip: Be sure to book the (free) tickets for onboard comedy clubs early. They sometimes sell out in advance due to heavy demand and limited capacity.
Other Interior attractions and activities
In addition to entertainment spaces, the interiors of Royal Caribbean ships are loaded with other venues where passengers can kick back and let loose day and night, including a seemingly endless array of bars, lounges and nightspots.
Every Royal Caribbean ship has a casino, and on the line's bigger vessels, these are big operations. The Casino Royale on Oasis of the Seas sprawls with 450 slot machines, 27 table games (including blackjack, roulette and craps) and a poker room, plus its very own bar. The casinos on the four other Oasis-class ships are similarly giant.
The 13 vessels that are part of the Voyager, Freedom and Oasis classes also have Royal Promenades — indoor, mall-like spaces that are home to some of the coolest bars at sea, as well as food outlets and retail shops.
The version of the Royal Promenade on Oasis of the Seas, for instance, offers the Bionic Bar, where a robot makes the drinks, along with the equally innovative Rising Tide Bar, which rises between the Royal Promenade and the outdoor Central Park area three decks above while you drink. There's also a British pub, a karaoke lounge, a Latin-themed nightspot and — located one deck up in a balcony area — the line's signature Schooner Bar.
The line's five Quantum-class vessels have a much smaller version of the Royal Promenade called the Royal Esplanade that transitions into another indoor area called The Via.
The Quantum-class ships also have an indoor fun zone known as The SeaPlex that includes a bumper car pavilion. When the bumper cars aren't in use, the space transforms into a roller rink, which is also used as a "circus school" with lessons on a flying trapeze. Other SeaPlex activities include air hockey and table tennis.
For something quieter and more pampering, Royal Caribbean ships also all have spas. Some are enormous, with more than two dozen treatment rooms and thermal areas with hot stone chairs, rainforest shower areas, saunas and steam rooms.
The top decks of Royal Caribbean ships are where things get crazy. There is stuff you just won't see on any other vessel at sea.
There are pools, of course — on the bigger ships, oodles of them. The Oasis-class ships have three distinct pool areas, as well as a watery play zone for kids. A growing number of Royal Caribbean ships also have water parks with significant waterslides.
You'll also find all sorts of other fun-focused attractions — giant rock climbing walls, surfing simulators, zip lines, miniature golf courses and basketball courts, to name a few. Some recently built ships even have skydiving simulators — giant acrylic tubes where you get to experience the sensation of skydiving.
On Oasis-class ships, there's also an outdoor Boardwalk area with a hand-carved carousel.
The most out-there deck-top attractions on Royal Caribbean ships are surely the North Star rides found on Quantum-class ships. Perhaps the most bizarre attractions ever conceived for a cruise ship, they are giant mechanical arms topped with glass-enclosed capsules that will take you soaring above the ships for the view.
The North Star is generally free to ride. It also can be booked for special events, such as weddings, for a charge.
Related: The 12 cruise ships with the most spectacular attractions at sea
Royal Caribbean has one of the most extensive children's programs at sea, with programs and activities for children as young as 6 months old through the age of 17.
The heart of the program, called Adventure Ocean, has free, supervised activities daily for children ages 3 to 12.
The line splits children here up into three age groups: Aquanauts (ages 3 to 5 years), Explorers (ages 6 to 8 years) and Voyagers (ages 9 to 12 years), each with their own age-appropriate activities ranging from scavenger hunts to arts and crafts. On many ships, there are extensive dedicated spaces for the different groups.
While the free programming ends at 10 p.m., you can pay extra to leave your kids at Adventure Ocean until 2 a.m., when it transforms into a supervised Late Night Party Zone.
Royal Caribbean also operates a Royal Babies nursery program for children ages 6 to 18 months old that includes interactive child and parent classes with activities developed by early childhood experts. The Royal Tots program (for ages 18 months to 3 years) offers 45-minute interactive playground sessions with age-appropriate activities and toys. Both programs are hosted by trained youth staff. On many ships, parents can drop off their babies at the nursery for short-term babysitting (this service comes with an extra charge).
Royal Caribbean also offers dedicated teen and tween programs on ships for children ages 12 to 17. On some vessels, such as the Quantum-class ships, you'll find a dedicated space with games and a widescreen TV called The Living Room where teens can hang out, plus a teens-only disco called Fuel.
Related: A peek at Perfect Day by CocoCay, Royal Caribbean's private island
What to know before you go
If you're a U.S. citizen on a cruise that starts and ends in a U.S. port, you'll need either a current passport or an official copy of your birth certificate and a driver's license or other government-issued photo identification to sail. Passports must be valid for at least six months. For cruises from international ports, you'll need a passport. The name on your reservation must be exactly as it is stated on your passport or other official proof of nationality.
Royal Caribbean adds an automatic service gratuity of $16 to $18.50 per person per day to final bills, depending on your cabin category. If you are unhappy with the service you receive, you can adjust this amount at the Guest Services desk before disembarking. An 18% gratuity is added to bills for bars, minibars, salons and spas.
Related: Everything you need to know about tipping on cruise ships
Royal Caribbean has one of the fastest Wi-Fi systems at sea — so fast that you're able to watch Netflix from your room on your mobile device. Pricing changes over time, but recently has been priced at $17.99 per day per device for a package that includes streaming. There also are multi-device packages that are less expensive on a per-device basis.
Related: How fast is the internet on Royal Caribbean ships? We put it to the test
Carry-on drinks policy
Royal Caribbean allows you to bring two bottles of wine or Champagne per cabin onto ships at boarding, plus up to a dozen standard cans, bottles or cartons of nonalcoholic drinks such as sodas. The line charges a $15 corkage fee if you bring the wine or Champagne to an onboard restaurant or other public areas to drink.
Smoking (including e-cigarette smoking) is allowed only in designated outdoor areas, casinos and the cigar clubs found on Freedom- and Voyager-class ships. It's forbidden in cabins and on cabin balconies, and those who violate this rule will face a $250 cleaning fee. In the casino, only cigarette smoking is allowed, and only in designated areas on most ships (smoking in casinos is forbidden on sailings out of Australia and U.K. ports).
Unlike some lines, Royal Caribbean does not build self-service launderettes onto its ships. Vessels offer extra-charge laundry and dry cleaning services.
All vessels have North American-style 110-volt outlets in rooms, as well as European-style 220-volt outlets. A growing number of vessels also have USB ports in cabins.
The currency used on all Royal Caribbean ships is U.S. dollars, no matter where they are in the world. All vessels operate on a "cashless system," with any onboard purchases you make posting automatically to your onboard account. You'll receive a SeaPass card that you can use to make charges.
You must be 21 to consume alcohol on sailings originating in North America or the United Arab Emirates. The drinking age on sailings from South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand is 18.
During the day, there is no specific dress code, and people dress casually. If it's a sea day in a warm-weather destination, and you're bound for the top deck, that means looking like you're going to the beach — T-shirts, shorts and bathing suits (with a cover-up to go inside) are just fine.
During the evenings, there is an official dress code, but it only applies to passengers entering the main dining room. On any given night, one of three dress codes will apply — casual, smart casual or formal.
Casual means just that — jeans, polo shirts and sundresses. Smart casual is a step up to collared shirts, dresses, skirts and blouses, or pantsuits, with a jacket for men optional. Formal officially means suits and ties, tuxedos, cocktail dresses or evening gowns. Don't worry if you don't want to go that fancy, though. Not everybody plays into it. You'll see most men wearing suits or sports coats and women in cocktail dresses.
Related: What to pack for your first cruise
Royal Caribbean loyalty program
Royal Caribbean has a point-based frequent cruiser program , the Crown & Anchor Society, that has six tiers ranging from Gold (requiring 3 points) to Pinnacle Club (700 points).
Members earn points for every night they sail on one of the line's ships, with double points awarded to passengers staying in suites. It takes one cruise to hit the first tier, Gold. It would take five cruises if you're doing seven-night trips (fewer if you're in a suite) to reach the second tier, Platinum (30 points).
Lower tiers don't bring all that much in terms of truly valuable benefits. You'll receive things like priority check-in and a private departure lounge with continental breakfast at the end of a trip. However, higher levels of the program start to be very enticing.
The second-to-highest tier, Diamond Plus (175 points), brings Concierge Club access, priority seating at onboard shows, an exclusive number to call for bookings and reduced rates for solo travelers, plus other things. The top Pinnacle Club level brings free cruises after hitting key milestones.
Note that, unlike airline frequent flyer programs, cruise line loyalty programs do not require you to requalify for status every year. So, yes, the perks with lower tiers aren't great, but it's not as difficult as it might at first seem to hit the more rewarding higher-level tiers in just a few years if you're cruising a lot.
A passenger staying in suites can get to the Diamond Plus level with just 13 seven-night cruises. Take a few longer voyages, like a transatlantic sailing, and you can reach it even sooner.
Related: The TPG guide to cruise line loyalty programs
How much does a Royal Caribbean cruise cost?
Royal Caribbean designs its ships to appeal to a broad mix of people, in part by offering a wide range of cabin types at varying price points. On a typical sailing, you might find an entry-level cabin for around $100 per person per night, while a high-end suite is five or 10 times that amount.
As of the time of this guide's posting, for instance, a two-bedroom Grand Suite on Harmony of the Seas for a seven-night Caribbean cruise in January 2024 was going for $3,010 per person, based on double occupancy. That's more than six times the cost of the least-expensive inside cabin (which was starting at $481 per person, based on double occupancy). Balcony cabins on the same sailing started at around $683 per person, based on double occupancy.
Note the "based on double occupancy" caveat. As is typical for cruise lines, Royal Caribbean charges on a per-person basis, not per room, and it prices most cabins based on two people occupying a room. It does offer a small number of cabins on some ships that are priced based on single occupancy for solo travelers.
In general, Royal Caribbean's big, resort-like Oasis-class and Quantum-class ships will be more expensive than the line's older, smaller vessels. However, there are a lot of factors that go into pricing for any given cruise, including the popularity of the specific itinerary, the time of year when the cruise is taking place and changing demand trends.
As you might expect, pricing for all ships will generally be less during offseason periods such as September and October.
The timing of when you book can also matter. Cruises book up much further in advance than airplanes or hotels. Many cruisers will tell you that the best pricing for any given sailing often is available when cruises first go on sale (which can be a good two years before a departure). Booking far in advance also gives you the best chance of getting your preferred cabin type and location on a ship.
Once on board a Royal Caribbean vessel, you'll pay extra for most drinks (most beers will set you back $7.99, for instance; wine by the glass ranges from $8 to $14), extra-charge restaurants, spa services, shore excursions, internet service and a few other things — unless you've bought a package for some of these items in advance.
Most onboard activities, such as rock climbing and zip lining, are included in the fare, as are your lodging, meals (in non-extra-charge restaurants) and entertainment.
Related: 15 ways that first-time cruisers waste money on a cruise
How to book
If you're sure you know what sort of cabin you want, on which ship, on which itinerary — and about a dozen other things — you can head over to RoyalCaribbean.com and book directly.
That said, given the complexity of booking a cruise — there are a lot of decisions to make during the booking process, trust us — we recommend that you use a seasoned travel agent who specializes in cruises.
A good travel agent will quiz you about your particular interests, travel style and preferences and steer you to the perfect cruise line, ship, itinerary and cabin for you. An agent also can help you if something goes wrong before, during or after your voyage.
If you're sure that Royal Caribbean is your line, look for a travel agent who specializes in trips with the brand. You want someone who knows all 34 of those cabin categories that we mentioned above and, preferably, has done ship inspections to see them firsthand.
Related: How to book a cruise with points and miles
Whether you use a travel agent or not, make sure to maximize your credit card spend when paying for the cruise by using a credit card that offers extra points for travel purchases . This could be the Chase Sapphire Reserve , which offers 3 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar on travel and dining (excluding the annual $300 travel credit). There's also the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card , which offers 2 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar on travel (and 3 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar on dining).
Royal Caribbean has grown into the world's biggest cruise line by passenger capacity for a reason. It has long dazzled customers with stunning, resort-like vessels full of every sort of amusement and activity you could imagine.
If you're a megaresort lover, you'll surely love the line's biggest ships, particularly the giant Oasis-class vessels. If you're more of a small boutique hotel sort of person or someone who just isn't happy around crowds, well … this might not be the line for you.
Planning a cruise? Start with these stories:
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- The 8 worst cabin locations on any cruise ship
- A quick guide to the most popular cruise lines
- 21 tips and tricks that will make your cruise go smoothly
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- Main content
I've been on 6 cruise ships — here's how they compare and the one I would recommend
- Since 2021, I've spent at least one night on six ships, all with different cruise lines.
- These companies, including Margaritaville and Royal Caribbean, target a variety of demographics.
- They each have their pros and cons , but Royal Caribbean's Wonder of the Seas is my favorite.
Throughout the past two years, I've spent at least one night on six ships, all with different cruise lines. While they've all varied in prices and target demographics, one has stood out as my clear favorite.
By no means do I love cruises — the shows can be tacky, the food can be mediocre, and I'm easily bored. If I weren't a travel reporter, I'd probably never board these floating resorts. But duty calls, and since 2021 I've been invited to several nonrevenue media sailings or overnighters with cruise lines such as Royal Caribbean, Oceania, and Norwegian.
While I've been unsurprisingly critical of some cruise ships, others have won me over. Let's take a closer look at the six ships I've been on and the one I'd recommend.
Celebrity Cruises' Celebrity Apex: trendy but boring
In late 2021, I boarded the new $1 billion Celebrity Apex for its two-night naming ceremony. At the time, I hadn't been on a cruise in more than 10 years. (As a kid with parents who liked cruises, I remember disliking them.)
The Apex wasn't designed for "zillennials" like me. Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, the cruise line's former CEO, told Insider at the time that Celebrity targeted Gen X customers . Despite this disconnect, the Apex had some of the best-designed and -decorated spaces I've seen on a ship.
Places such as Eden (a restaurant, bar, and entertainment venue) were attractive and trendy, while the Rooftop Garden looked just the way its name promised. Even the outdoor lounges and frequently overlooked atrium were more exciting than most ships' — the latter had a martini bar that sat under the glow of an LED chandelier.
While my 243-square-foot Infinite Veranda stateroom had some dull decor, the natural light from the large wall of windows made my tiny cabin feel large.
Where these spaces shined, the dining didn't: I wasn't wowed by any of my meals, including my dinner at Le Petit Chef . Here, overhead projectors displayed an animated storyline on the dining table. But this gimmick wasn't enough to overshadow the disappointingly mediocre food.
Ultimately, I faced the same dilemma I remembered as a child: boredom. While the theater was grand, I wasn't wowed by the nighttime show. And as I said at the time, I could wade around the pool only so many times and eat and drink so much. While I loved the design of spaces such as the Magic Carpet, an outdoor extension that moves vertically between decks, I couldn't spend all day staring at it.
If I were here on a weeklong vacation, I'd be twiddling my thumbs by day three.
Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Prima: fun with a great food hall
In October 2022, I was invited on the four-night inaugural sailing for the $1.1 billion Norwegian Prima . It was the first time I had ever enjoyed being on a cruise.
Four nights is long for a cynic like me. But to my surprise, I was consistently entertained by the Prima's long list of amenities , including modern dartboards, a VR arcade, a mini-golf course, and a thrilling free-fall dry slide. These activities — along with the outdoor game court and go-kart track — could've kept me entertained for another day or two at sea.
My 230-square-foot balcony stateroom was also well-designed and modern: I appreciated the roomy bathroom, storage options, and contemporary feel. But the bedding was mediocre, the balcony was tiny, and the "mural" behind the bed and couch was a tacky eyesore.
On the plus side, the Prima had my favorite dining venue of all six ships: an 11-restaurant food hall with tableside tablet ordering systems. Instead of going to a buffet to pick at heat-lamp-fresh leftovers, this concept gave hungry travelers such as me a convenient way to try Indian curries and Singaporean-inspired noodles in one sitting.
But the greatest shock of all was the enjoyable nighttime entertainment, specifically Norwegian's rendition of the Broadway-approved "Summer: The Donna Summer Musical" and "The Price Is Right Live." I found myself giggling throughout the latter.
This, combined with the fun activities and food options, made sailing on the Prima an entertaining experience that I would consider booking again.
Royal Caribbean International's Wonder of the Seas: overstimulating and packed with activities
After boarding the Wonder of the Seas in December 2022, I think Royal Caribbean's big bet on mega cruise ships is paying off. My two-night sailing on the world's biggest cruise ship just wasn't enough time to test all of the ship's amenities.
At its massive size, there was plenty of room for "neighborhoods," such as a boardwalk, a park, an outdoor entertainment center with activities such as a zipline, and a colorful pool deck with water slides. Several of these spaces looked more like those of an amusement park than a cruise liner.
The list of Wonder of the Seas' amenities , which included some I'd never seen on a ship before, seemed endless. If it managed to overwhelm me for two nights, I'm sure it'd keep any family booked and busy.
From an ice-skating show to an exhilarating outdoor swim, dive, and dance performance, the entertainment options were also diverse. The former was a bore — I left early. But the dramatics and coordination of the latter made it the most impressive cruise-ship show I've ever seen.
Onto the negatives — to start, the food quality wasn't consistent. While my buffet and dinner meals at Hooked Seafood were satisfactory, the dry and flavorless fried chicken at the new-to-brand Mason Jar was disappointing.
My balcony stateroom was also a massive letdown. Sure, it had all the essentials , large storage units, and a clothesline in the shower. But the bathroom wouldn't be comfortable for two people, water splashed out of the sink basin whenever I washed my hands, and the bland decor was a stark contrast from the sensory overload of the rest of the ship. The stateroom looked more utilitarian than it did fun.
Margaritaville at Sea's Paradise: cheap and quick
The Margaritaville empire's nascent cruise line exclusively operates two-night round-trip sailings like clockwork from Palm Beach, Florida, to Freeport, Bahamas. It's a great cruise for budget travelers — most of these dates can be booked for well under $200 a person, including some at $50.
But Margaritaville at Sea's attraction ends at its eye-catching fares. When I attended the ship's one-night inaugural sailing in May 2022, I realized travelers get what they pay for: a very old ship. Before it adopted Jimmy Buffetts' branding , Margaritaville at Sea was the budget operator Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line, and the Paradise was its 30-year-old flagship Grand Classica vessel.
Sure, the vessel had some references to Buffett in the names of its venues, signage, and wall art. But besides that and a handful of new decor (shown above), it didn't seem as if the ship had undergone a massive cosmetic overhaul to align with the Margaritaville brand.
Instead, the Paradise looked out of style and place compared with other properties in the hospitality giant's portfolio. And when I tried to use the public restroom on the pool deck, the flush almost fell off its mount.
Similarly, instead of an immersive Margaritaville accommodation with beach-cottage-like decor, my 176-square-foot oceanview stateroom was bare and looked as old as the original song. While functional, the dark lines in my bathroom shower looked dirty, while the yellowish walls and wood accents made my cabin feel outdated and unkempt.
On the plus side, my meal at JWB Prime Steakhouse might have been one of the best steakhouse dinners I've ever had. But guests have to pay extra to eat there.
The cruise line has since spent millions of dollars updating areas such as the staterooms and adding amenities such as a pickleball court. I haven't boarded the ship since this refresh. But my first experience has left me so cynical that I don't plan on giving it a second try. I'm not sure a few million dollars is enough to fix its " Spirit Airlines of the Sea " reputation.
Explora Journeys' Explora I: luxurious, expensive, and boring
MSC Group's new Explora Journeys is a growing luxury-cruise brand you probably haven't heard of. I spent one night on its first $560 million Explora I ship in October while it was docked in New York City, and I think the new brand made a great first attempt at breaking into the luxury market.
While my ocean terrace suite was the smallest cabin on the ship, it was more luxurious than any hotel I've paid for. My cabin's walk-in closet, welcome bottle of Veuve Clicquot, Dyson hairdryer, and balcony daybed won me over. But the cheapest itinerary in 2024 comes out to $500 a day per person — it's up to you if you think these little luxuries justify this steep price.
Like the Wonder of the Seas, there were spaces aboard the ship that looked nothing like an average cruise vessel. Instead of a typical atrium, upscale stores such as Rolex and Cartier surrounded what looked like a hotel bar. And instead of a large central pool deck, the Explora I had four smaller pools, including an infinity pool and one under a retractable glass roof.
At its price, it's fair to expect luxury food. The thinly sliced wagyu at the pan-Asian Sakura was one of the best dishes I've had on a ship. But I preferred my own baked miso cod to the one I was served.
Luckily, the ship didn't have any splashy "production-style shows" for me to turn my nose up at. But once again, I'm not sure how much time I can spend in the spa or at the outdoor gym before I'm bored. So, while I appreciated the rows of cabanas and modern lounges, I think a weeklong vacation on the Explora I would be too quiet for me.
Oceania Cruises' Vista: upscale but boring
In late September, I spent one night on Oceania Cruises' Vista while it was docked in New York City. I think the new ship is a great option for mature travelers who are interested in higher-end cruises but don't want to pay for the likes of Regent Seven Seas.
For a food-focused cruise line, my dinner in the Grand Dining Room had luxurious options such as monkfish and caviar. But in retrospect, it was memorable only because of the ingredients, not the taste. Unfortunately, my lobster didn't beat the comforts of Norwegian Prima's food hall or the wagyu from Explora.
Appropriately for a premium cruise ship, my veranda stateroom was lined with one of the largest balconies I've ever had. And small details such as designated cup holders in the bathroom, a complimentary beverage station, and Bulgari toiletries made it stand out from any veranda cabin on a mass-market cruise ship.
Like my accommodations, the Vista's common spaces, such as the library lounge, had an upscale flair. Even the circular daybed-lined pool deck was more elevated and modern than the typical cruise-ship pool surrounded by generic lounge chairs. And while there were no water slides or arcades, there was a large putting green and walking track.
Unsurprisingly, I did not enjoy the cringy "Headliners'' evening song-and-dance show. And because I had limited time on the ship, I didn't get to experience activities such as cooking or art classes. This might have made a difference — but in the end, I again found the ship to be too calm for my liking.
The verdict: Royal Caribbean's Wonder of the Seas is my favorite
While I appreciated the upscale qualities of Explora and Oceania's vessels, I couldn't imagine spending more than three days on either ship. Similarly, while Margaritaville at Sea Paradise's cheap costs are enticing, I don't plan to sail on it again.
My favorite cruise liners are the ones with engaging activities and creative spaces that don't look like those of a typical ship. The Wonder of the Seas executed all of this — more than the Norwegian Prima — perfectly, enough to make me overlook the sore spots of my stateroom and mediocre meal. Because of this, it's the one ship I'll continue recommending to most cruise fans.
But that doesn't mean it has to be your favorite. If your priority is a cheap, quick-and-dirty getaway, Margaritaville at Sea Paradise is great. If you want something luxurious but don't want to spend too much, try the Oceania Vista — or the Explora I if you really want to ball out. And if you're traveling with children, Royal Caribbean's Wonder of the Seas and the Norwegian Prima are great options. The latter two are the only ones I'd consider booking again.
Cruise Ship Worker Captures the Hectic Hustle of Royal Caribbean’s Annual Lifeboat Drill
Posted: October 31, 2023 | Last updated: October 31, 2023
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Though originally attributed to aerospace engineer Edward A. Murphy, Jr., Murphy's Law is one every good sailor has memorized: "Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong." It's that kind of proactive pessimism that helps keep people safe! On cruise liners, where passenger manifests frequently number into the thousands, preparing for the worst takes the form of safety demonstrations for the passengers and massive safety drills for the crew.
Bryan James isn't your stereotypical sailor, working as a musician on board Royal Caribbean's Wonder of the Seas. Just like the rest of the crew, however, he has to participate in exercises such as their October 30 lifeboat drill- aka, "the sweatiest time of year for crew members." What a mental image...
One thing's for certain- Royal Caribbean isn't about to let another "Titanic" situation happen on their watch! Every year, Bryan James ( @bryanjamescruises on TikTok) joins hundreds of other crew members in one of the ship's most important annual drills- filling their lifeboats!
Thankfully, a cruise ship's lifeboats rarely have to be used for their intended emergency purpose (though they often double as small transport vessels, or "tender boats," on bigger ships). However, if something ever does go horribly wrong, the crew needs to know what the maximum capacity of their lifeboats are!
This is where things get sweaty. After getting into their lifejackets and attending a debrief (at the ship's ice skating rink, no less), the crew of Wonder of the Seas walked over to their lifeboats and, like clowns squeezing into a tiny car, fit themselves inside one by one. There were dots representing where somebody was supposed to sit, but as the crew crammed themselves in, the seating placements eventually went ignored.
Eventually, the crew was able to pack themselves inside the tiny boat- but Bryan didn't lie about it being sweaty. At least they got water bottles to cut through the stifling heat. The real consolation prize came after, though, when the crew got to stretch their limbs and have fun at the crew's annual Halloween party. What a way to celebrate a successful drill!
Bryan survived his exhausting ordeal without too many complaints, but other former cruise ship workers weren't as chill about the drill. "I used to duck out of the line and hide when they made us do this lol," one former crew member revealed in the comments.
After seeing this, I'm grateful that I only have to sit through a short debrief when I go cruising. Crew life ain't all sunshine and sea breezes, after all!
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When it comes to planning the ultimate getaway, there are so many reasons why cruise vacations rank among the most popular travel options. First of all, they’re completely stress-free. On a cruise vacation, all the planning is taken care of by the cruise line — from the destinations you sail to and the shore excursions available at each port, to a full range of entertainment and activities happening onboard every day. If you’re not a planner, or if the only things you’re looking to focus on during your getaway is savoring great food, relaxing, and soaking up the sights, cruise vacations are the way to go. A cruise vacation is also a great option if you’re traveling with the whole family, especially when you opt for a Royal Caribbean cruise. All of the ships in this cruise line’s fleet offer family-friendly experiences for guests of all ages. Even little ones will find plenty of ways to play with spaces and activities designed for tots to tweens. One of the top reasons savvy travelers love cruising, though, is because of the incredible value it offers. With Royal Caribbean, your cruise fare includes access to most of the ship’s attractions, select dining venues and all of the entertainment onboard. If you want to make your experience even more all-inclusive, you can opt for beverage and specialty dining packages that cover drinks and dinner at some of the most exclusive restaurants in the fleet. On top of all that, the cruise line presents frequent limited-time offers and seasonal sales, making it easy to score big savings when booking your vacation.
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Royal Caribbean Has a Name for Its Newest Cruise Ship
Royal Caribbean has revealed the name for its newest cruise ship, set to debut in the summer of 2025: Star of the Seas.
The new cruise ship will be the second in the company’s new “Icon Class,” following Icon of the Seas, which will be making its debut later this year.
Star of the Seas is currently under construction in Finland.
“The idea of combining the best of every type of vacation into one ultimate adventure has created more excitement than ever anticipated, and Star of the Seas will be the next bold answer to the record-breaking consumer demand we’ve seen for nearly a year and counting with Icon of the Seas ,” said Michael Bayley, president and CEO, Royal Caribbean International.
Icon of the seas launched sales last October, kicking off what Royal Caribbean said was its single-largest booking day in its 53-year history.
That led the company to release its 2025-2026 vacations on Icon three months ahead of schedule.
Star of the Seas will be the third Royal Caribbean ship powered by liquefied natural gas.
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Royal Caribbean Wins Big at 2023 Travvy Awards
Royal Caribbean Group continues its tradition of excellence this year, having once again proven itself to be a standout in the travel industry by sweeping multiple awards categories at the ninth annual 2023 Travvy Awards gala, held in Fort Lauderdale on November 2.
With a strong commitment to delivering unmatched experiences, the global cruise company secured dozens of top honors spanning various categories, further solidifying its preeminent status in the sector.
The Miami-based company fully owns and operates three popular cruise lines in the U.S.: Royal Caribbean International , Celebrity Cruises , and Silversea Cruises , which together took home a total of 25 Gold, Silver and Bronze awards at this year’s prestigious awards gala.
Produced by TravelPulse and AGENTatHOME, the Travvy Awards are held to honor the travel industry's top suppliers across various sectors each year, with winners selected via voting by an audience of travel advisors who know these suppliers’ products best. A range of categories are created annually to honor the premier travel partners in such areas as air travel, cruises, hotels and resorts, tour operators, destinations, tourism boards, rail travel, car rental, travel insurance, advisor education and more.
Out of 33 unique cruise-sector-specific categories—which are determined by such factors as the cruising style, and type, size, and class of cruise lines and vessels, as well as their destination markets served—Royal Caribbean Group’s trio of brands performed exceptionally well in the 15 brackets in which it was nominated.
2021 Travvy Awards. (photo via Eric Bowman)
Royal Caribbean International
The brand that’s probably best-known among consumers at the mainstream level, Royal Caribbean International (RCI) placed in 14 categories, earning first-place Gold accolades as the Best Cruise Line sailing in the Caribbean, Central and South America, Asia, Oceania (Australia/New Zealand/South Pacific); the Best Large Cruise Line (Over 1,000 Cabins), Best Contemporary Cruise Line, and Best Entertainment in a Cruise Line. The brand also took home several second-place Silver awards, namely for Best Cruise Line sailing in Alaska, Hawaii and Europe, and Best Family Cruise Line.
Royal Caribbean’s newest vessel and current flagship, which entered service last year, the Oasis-class Wonder of the Seas triumphed individually in three categories, being named Best Cruise Ship Overall, Best Large Cruise Ship (Over 1,000 Cabins) and Best Contemporary Cruise Ship. And, at least until her sister ship, Icon of the Seas, enters service in January 2024, she is also objectively the world’s largest cruise ship.
The Group’s Premium-level brand, Celebrity Cruises won its own set of 10 Travvys, sailing away with Gold awards for Best Premium Cruise Line, Best Expedition/Adventure Cruise Line and Best Cruise Line sailing in Europe; as well as placing Silver in the categories of Best Large Cruise Line (Over 1,000 Cabins), Best Cruise Line sailing in Oceania (Australia/New Zealand/South Pacific), and Central and South America.
Individually, some of Celebrity’s vessels also walked away with top-tier recognitions, with the Celebrity Flora winning Gold for Best Expedition/Adventure Cruise Ship, and Celebrity Beyond claiming the Gold prize for Best Premium Cruise Ship, and earning Silver standing for Best Cruise Ship Overall and Best Large Cruise Ship (Over 1,000 Cabins).
Last, but not least, the Group’s small- to medium-ship luxury line, Silversea Cruises captured Bronze in the category of Best Luxury Cruise Line. With more than 800 destinations on its docket, more than any other cruise line, Silversea operates intimate, all-inclusive voyages all over the globe. Its guests are supremely pampered throughout their journey, enjoying spacious suites with personalized butler service, gourmet dining, and a wide range of included amenities, such as gratuities, beverages and excursions.
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