Category Archives: Latest Cruise News

cruise vlogs

18 Best Cruise Vlogs That You Need To Binge-Watch

Last updated on February 22nd, 2020 at 08:24 am

As cruise lovers, we prefer to be on board in the middle of the sea than being on land, even virtually. But during those times we have to be away from the blue, we have modern-day storytellers that would bring us back right in the midst of the salty air–vloggers. Armed with cameras, microphones, tripods, and laptops, they tell stories that we love to immerse ourselves in. To help keep your bucket full, here’s a list of 19 of the best cruise vlogs that are binge-worthy.

cruise vlogs - cruise videos

CruiseTipsTV

Sheri and her family started CruiseTipsTv in 2013. They are making astonishing progress, moving forward to 2020, having over 480 videos, more than 80,000 youtube subscribers, a Cruising academy, and almost 15 million viewers, their vlogs are treasure troves for both new and seasoned cruisers.

Sheri also recently ventured into podcasting, the CruiseTipsTV Unplugged, where they feature weekly segments on cruise tips and cruise stories.

Check out CruiseTipsTV on YouTube

Sean and Stef IRL 

A married couple who are based in Orlando, whose goal is to travel the world one cruise at a time, is hosting Cruiseflix. Sean and Stef Mullen, are professional filmmakers who have won 3 Emmy awards, are producing informative but fun cruise vlogs that are topnotch. 

With the mission to inspire and connect with people all around the globe and show the joy of travelling, their vlogs will definitely leave you feeling good about life, relationship, and cruising.

Check out Sean & Stef on YouTube

Emma Cruises

Creator of Facebook page “Cruising Isn’t Just For Old People,” Emma breaks the stereotyping of cruisers as old school. In her cruise vlogs, she features cabin tours, cruise booking tips, and tricks, ship reviews, and she genuinely sails the coolest ships making cruising hip for Millenials.

Check out Emma Cruises on YouTube

SoloCruiser

A solo traveller, Julia produces vlogs that present the reality of cruising, both good and bad. She started uploading videos on youtube in 2012 and shares her personal insights she has learned from various lines, which are extremely helpful for people who want to try cruising alone.

Check out SoloCruiser on YouTube

In The Loop Travel

John, the content creator of this innovative vlog, was able to integrate fitness into cruising. Their philosophy is to travel fit, travel happy, and travel often. He provided answers to health-conscious cruisers who do not want to miss out on both fun and fitness.

Check out In The Loop Travel on YouTube

I Like Cruise Ships

This youtube channel launched a little over 3 years in creating video content and has been steadily gaining traction. Russell, who has worked on cruise ships for more than 20 years, is running this channel with the expertise we all need to know about cruising.

Check out I Like Cruise Ships on YouTube

Cruising With Wheels

A channel that primarily focuses on everything about cruising and provides informative videos for accessibility on and off-board while cruising. To get the most out of your vacation, preparation is imperative when cruising with a disability, and watching vlogs of this sort is a massive help.

Check out Cruising with Wheels on YouTube

Cruise Radio

Cruise Radio has made it onto the list of both our favorite cruise blogs and now, one of our fav cruise vlogs. Their YouTube channel consists of over 26,000 subscribers and over 4 million total views on their videos. Since launching the website in 2009, founder Doug Parker has created exceptional content, whether that’s on the website, podcast or video.  Their ship tours are well done, informative and interesting.

Check out Cruise Radio on YouTube

Popular Cruising

Jason Leppert, the genius behind Popular Cruising, produces in-depth cruise reviews and tour views. He acquired his passion for cruising from his parents when he was just 2 years old, and after 130 sailings, I don’t think there’s stopping Jason from embarking. You’ll definitely love his behind-the-scenes cruise explorations, previews on upcoming ships and shoreside excursions.

Check out Popular Cruising on YouTube

Cruise Fever

Founded by two brothers who are passionate about cruising –Ben Souza and Jonathan Mark. These siblings made sure that their viewers are not just obtaining tips, reviews, and ship information — they keep their followers posted on the latest trends and news in the cruising industry. Their youtube channel has over 40,000 subscribers and about 17,000,000 views.

Check out Cruise Fever on YouTube

Paul and Carole Love to Travel

Paul and Carole have travelled to over 40 countries, tried different kinds of accommodations, and have been to 19 cruises. Now they want to give back to the cruising world by offering their honest opinions through their festive vlogs.

Check out Paul & Carole Love to Travel on YouTube

Griff and Alyssa

A lovely couple who adores cruising shares their adventures and provides informative videos with fantastic cinematography. Their content is perfect for cruise veterans and new cruisers alike who are looking for reliable information about their next travel.

Check out Griff & Alyssa on YouTube

Jim Zimmerlin

Jim has been running his own youtube channel since 2006 and has attained almost 300,000,000 views. People love him, he is an enjoyable person to watch with videos that offer varieties of fun – from cruising, trains, American Cocker Spaniel dogs to expensive toys. 

Check out Jim Zimmerlin on YouTube

La Lido Loca

Started uploading videos on youtube April of 2017, and they haven’t stopped since. In their lively vlogs, they generously share practical tips and realities of cruising that can help anyone in making informed decisions for their next cruise. To help out the cruising community, they created a Facebook community called La Lido Loca Community to help answer questions about cruising and provide a platform for wonderful travelling stories to be shared on.

Check out La Lido Loca on YouTube

Josh Hocum

Travel, Sleep, Repeat –that is Josh’s mantra. Though he seems laid back, he creates videos with thrilling cruise contents that transports viewers right at the very deck of each featured ship. If you are interested in the Carnival, you’ll love him more because a lot of the videos in his channel features the Carnival. His 3.8 million viewers are enough testament that he produces one of the best cruise vlogs out there.

Check out Josh Hocum on YouTube

Paro DeeJay

Since July of 2013, Jay and his wife Dee have been uploading content on youtube, which now has 685 videos and almost 2.8 million views. Besides the undeniable fact that they provide cruise tips, reviews, and tours of different cruise lines, what sets them apart is their amusing parody songs and cover tunes. 

Check out Paro DeeJay on YouTube

EECC Travels

An absolute must-watch vlog for families who enjoy cruising together. EECC Travels is composed of Alisa and Jason (Couple) and three sons. They make travelling as a family doable, especially for those who have children and haven’t tried cruising. You can check out their channel and be ready to be inspired to travel with the whole fam.

Check out EECC Travels on YouTube

Trev and Chels

Viewers absolutely love this young couple on their travels, with the traction of over 56 million views, there’s a reason why cruisers are captivated by them. They create videos with superb editing and perfect voice-overs that features the cruise experiences vividly, and it is keeping people hooked.

Check out Trev & Chels on YouTube

Talking Cruise

Equipped with the current news, cruise ship tours, and topics from around the world of cruising in a fun and unique format. Hosted by Chris Cardona, with 19 years of working in the cruise industry, his channel is a gem for anyone who’s planning to go on a cruise.

Check out Talking Cruise on YouTube

Before you start your vlog-watching spree…

Going on a cruise can be intimidating with all the preparation, booking, parking, finding the right ports, and so on and on, but these vloggers manage to contribute to the cruising industry by featuring and creating content that will genuinely make the process a bit uncomplicated. But hey! It’s all worth it, so I hope you’ll enjoy watching 19 of the best cruise vlogs. 

And, don’t forget to check out our Top Cruise Blogs post too!

About Jonathon Hyjek

Jonathon is the tech guy behind CruiseportAdvisor.com. When he's not stuck in front of his computer, Jonathon enjoys travel & cruising (even after being on a cruise ship that caught fire - a story for another day!)

cruise news

Top Cruise Stories of 2016

Last updated on August 27th, 2020 at 02:31 am

As the end of 2016 is within sight and the dawn of 2017 almost upon us, let’s take a look back at what made headlines this year in the cruise world.

Cruises to Cuba

This was a big one. After political relations with Cuba were restored by President Obama, this paved the way for US-based cruise companies to start looking at Cuba as the next major cruise destination. The changes didn’t come without hurdles and quirks, but the first ship arrived in Havana, Cuba on May 2, 2016. Since that time, many other cruise lines have begun to plan itineraries to Cuba.

New Ships

Carnival, Royal Caribbean, MSC, Viking Ocean Cruises and a host of other companies introduced new ships in 2016. Bigger, bolder, more entertainment, more food, more technology – with each year that passes cruise lines are looking for new and innovative ways to cater to existing cruisers, while appealing to first-time cruisers. Here are just a few of the new ships that entered service in 2016.

Carnival Visa
Holland America ms Koningsdam
Royal Caribbean Ovation of the Seas
Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas
Viking Sea
Regent Seven Seas Explorer

New/Updated Cruise Terminals

The following ports made significant investments into new or upgraded cruise terminals in order to handle increased passenger flow. With newer, bigger ships coming into service each year this has caused an increase in demand for larger terminal facilities.

Long Beach – Carnival
PortMiami – MSC
PortMiami – Royal Caribbean
Montreal Cruise Terminal
Mobile Alabama Cruise Terminal
Port Canaveral

 

port-canaveral

Port Canaveral Reopens Cruise Terminal After $35M Upgrade

Last updated on January 5th, 2018 at 03:40 pm

This weekend – six long months and $35 million dollars later – Port Canaveral will finally reopen its new and improved Cruise Terminal 10.

The renovation project included expanding the size of the two-story terminal from 97,048 square feet to 125,824 square feet. By doing this, the terminal is now able to handle much larger ships. While it could previously only handle ships carrying up to 3,600 passengers, it can now handle ships with a carrying capacity of up to 5,500 passengers.

port canaveral

Here is a breakdown of some of the major renovations included in the overall $35 million project:

  • $25.69 million was spent on the actual terminal updates. One of these updates was expanding the lower area of the ship where baggage processing occurs. This area increased from 42,799 square feet to 64,396 square feet. Another update occurred in the upstairs area where passengers check in. This space increased from 54,249 square feet to 61,428 square feet.
  • $4.48 million was spent on mobile passenger boarding bridges. The new mobile bridge systems will provide increased flexibility compared to the previous systems which were considered to be much more fixed. These new systems will come in handy when being used for ships with various heights and door locations.
  • $1.79 million was spent on strengthening the pier. By updating the pier to carbon fiber reinforced polymer technology, the life and structural capacity of the pier was extended substantially.

These Cruise Terminal 10 renovations were just some of the several upgrades that Port Canaveral saw this year: It also underwent a $48.38 million renovation at Cruise Terminal 5 and its parking garage, passenger boarding bridges, and pier; and a $2.3 million project at Cruise Terminal 8.

While these upgrades require a ton of time, money, and effort, they help to delay the need for Port Canaveral to build an entirely new terminal which would require a lot more time and effort and could cost upwards of $100 million.

This Saturday will be the exciting debut of the renovated Cruise Terminal 10.

On Port Canaveral’s north side, the terminal will be used by Norwegian Cruise Line. Included here will be the Norwegian Epic, which will sail from Port Canaveral for the next two fall and winter seasons, as well as the Norwegian Breakaway, which makes port-of-call stops here.

According to John Murray, Port Canaveral’s Chief Executive Officer, Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas – the third-largest cruise ship in the world – is also scheduled to sail from Port Canaveral with about 6,400 passengers on board.

“We’ve got a big ship with a lot of folks that are interested in sailing here,” Murray told the port commissioners.

Just within the first two weeks of November, Port Canaveral saw 35 cruise ships making inbound and outbound turns within the port.

“That, I think, is a record for the port,” Murray exclaimed. “We’ve had a very, very exciting three to four weeks here in the port.”

 

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Two New Cruise Ships Joining Port Canaveral This Weekend

Last updated on January 5th, 2018 at 03:40 pm

It’s a busy weekend for Port Canaveral, as it welcomes two new cruise ships to its lineup: the Norwegian Epic and the Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas.

The addition of these new cruise ships will be celebrated with consecutive community gatherings in Jetty Park on Saturday and Sunday. Both celebrations will be held from 3:00pm to 6:00pm, and free admission to the park will begin at 2:00pm both days. There will be plenty of entertainment and giveaways, and in return, the public is asked to bring at least one non-perishable food item as a donation to the Sharing Center of Central Brevard.

In addition to these celebrations, there will also be an invite-only traditional maritime ceremony aboard each ship.

“I think it’s a very exciting time for Port Canaveral, and shows our commitment to the cruise business,” expressed Port Canaveral Chief Executive Officer, John Murray.”

The Norwegian Epic has a passenger capacity of 4,100, and it will be based at Port Canaveral for the next two fall/winter sailing seasons. This ship is actually replacing the much smaller and older Norwegian Spirit at Port Canaveral. The Spirit was at Port Canaveral in 2015 and only carried 2,018 passengers.

norwegian epic

The Epic will be at Port Canaveral’s newest terminal, Cruise Terminal 1, on Saturday – arriving at 5:15am and departing at 4:30pm – and will then move to the newly renovated Cruise Terminal 10 following this weekend.

Andy Stuart, Norwegian Cruise Line President and Chief Executive Officer, referred to the Norwegian Epic as one of Norwegian Cruise Line’s “largest and most awarded ships.” He stated that the Epic “revolutionized the cruise industry when she debuted in 2010,” and with its recent large-scale renovations, it will offer “a variety of itineraries varying in length and ports of call.”

“We think this will be a recipe for success, and we look forward to having her in Port Canaveral in 2017 and 2018.” said Stuart.

oasis of the seas

The Oasis of the Seas actually made its debut at Port Canaveral last Saturday. This weekend, the ship will be arriving at Port Canaveral on Sunday at 6:00am and will be departing at 4:30pm (Cruise Terminal 1). Royal Caribbean has committed this colossal 6,360-passenger ship to Port Canaveral year-round for at least the next two years.

Both the Norwegian Epic and the Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas are two of the world’s 10 largest cruise ships, and Port Canaveral is lucky enough to experience them both for the next few years.

cuba-cruises

Long Awaited: Cuba Officials Approve Carnival’s Bid for Travel from Miami to Cuba

Last updated on February 25th, 2020 at 12:26 pm

In July of 2015 Carnival Cruise Lines announced plans to offer trips from Miami, FL to Cuba. However, this announcement came on the toes of contingency—Cuba had to first approve the company’s bid for this inaugural voyage. While barriers over decades-long embargoes between the US and Cuba have seemingly been washing away since 2014, the approval would still not be an easy task.

UPDATE – April 30, 2016 – First cruise to Cuba in over 50 years is getting ready to sail! Read the full article here.

Cuba has had concerns over open travel between the two countries for quite some time, as Miami is a haven for illegal emigration from Cuba to the United States. The high population of Cubans in Miami has even led to slower sales of tickets than expected from the immediate area, however, sales across the whole of the United States will likely overcome this.

In addition to Cuban-citizen travel, Cuba had to evaluate its ports and the ability for cruise ships such as Carnival’s Fathom Cruise lines to safely dock. Lastly, the Cuban infrastructure is of concern regarding the needed accommodations for the high volume of expected US travelers who have been eager to experience Cuba for the first time. While the embargo still exists, cruise ships and passengers will fall under an exception to the embargo for “people to people” travel.
cuba-cruises
On March 21, 2016, the much anticipated meeting between US President Barack Obama and Cuban leader Raul Castro culminated in the historic announcement that Cuban authorities representing Havanatur Celimar, and other agencies, approved Carnival’s bid for travel from Miami to Cuba. Carnival, in anticipation of the announcement already had tickets on sale for the trip. The voyage will be operated by Carnival’s Fathom brand and take place on its Adonia vessel. This is the first time during the six-decade embargo that a cruise ship has operated from Miami to the island nation of Cuba. The approval for travel also shows the growing interest by Americans to explore the neighboring island, and for the two countries to once again open borders to each other.

In April of 2016, the Adonia will be assigned to Carnival’s Fathom brand which focuses on unique vacations for travelers who want to work alongside local communities in a more volunteer-style approach to vacationing. The intent of the Adonia is to provide a positive experience to travelers wanting to contribute to a positive social-impact on the communities they visit. Once assigned, the Adonia will be the smallest of Fathom’s seven ships holding just over 700 passengers. The small ship size was designed to impart camaraderie among passengers, and is ideal for the Fathom brand of building positive social community. Adonia is a luxurious ship, boasting wood-style paneling, grand staircase, and the elegance expected among top-tier cruise lines.

While travel agents have been concerned about selling tickets as still awaiting Cuba’s approval, the announcement will certainly bring forward a boon of excitement among travelers and ticket sales. It is also expected that Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings will be given approval for travel from the US to Cuba within a matter of days. However, neither cruise line will offer travel prior to Carnival’s Adonia voyage in May.

The Adonia will provide seven-night bi-weekly trips from Miami to Cuba with berthing approval in Havana, Cienfuegos, and Santiago de Cuba. Fairs aboard the Adonia will begin at $1800 per person. Cuban Visas, taxes, additional fees and port expenses will be the responsibility of the traveler.

About Jody Mabry

Jody Mabry is a multi-award winning freelance writer who splits his time between Minneapolis, MN and San Francisco, CA. When he is not out on assignment he can be found with family, and knocking a few balls around the tennis court.

2015CruisePortAdvisor

Year in Review: Our Most Popular Posts of 2015

Last updated on February 25th, 2020 at 12:28 pm

2015CruisePortAdvisor

Now that we’re getting settled into 2016, it’s time to take a look back at 2015 and see what posts generated the most interest on Cruise Port Advisor during the year.

#1. Carnival Cruises to Miami Starting May 2016

A little background on this story if you don’t follow the news. After about 50 years of Cuba closing it’s doors to the United States, it was announced that diplomatic relations had been restored. Within days, speculation started to swirl that Americans would soon be able to visit this island nation just 100 miles from Key West Florida.

#2. Carnival Journeys, A Journey Worth Taking

These unique cruises offered by Carnival Cruise Lines promise to give passengers more local entertainment and food as they travel on a 9+ night itinerary.

#3. 15 Best Cruise Blogs to Follow Today

A round-up of our favorite cruise blogs and bloggers. It seems that cruise addicts just can’t get enough of reading about, researching and dreaming of their next cruise so we put together this list to help you find the best info about your next cruise.

#4. Code Bravo: Lessons Learned During a Cruise Ship Fire

This was a personal, completely true story of our first cruise and the “interesting” time that we had. Don’t let it scare you away from taking a cruise!

About Jonathon Hyjek

Jonathon is the tech guy behind CruiseportAdvisor.com. When he's not stuck in front of his computer, Jonathon enjoys travel & cruising (even after being on a cruise ship that caught fire - a story for another day!)

miami-cuba-cruise

Cruises to Cuba – What you need to know

Last updated on August 25th, 2020 at 08:58 am

The first cruise to Cuba from Miami arrived in Cuba in May 2016 – Read more here.

Cruise Port Advisor has put together this helpful Travel Guide to Havana Cuba to help in planning your trip to this wonderful island nation.

**Recent updates – Cruises to Cuba**

UPDATE – June 5, 2019 – The USA now restricts cruises to Cuba. Read More

UPDATE – July 29, 2016 – Royal Caribbean cruises to Cuba on hold – Read More

UPDATE – April 30, 2016 – First cruise to Cuba in over 50 years is getting ready to sail! Read the full article here.

UPDATE – April 22, 2016 – Cuban-American passengers cleared for travel via cruise ships. Read the full article here

UPDATE – April 18, 2016Carnival may delay sailings to Cuba because of recent Cuban rules that will try to stop Cuban-American passengers from taking cruises on the new Fathom line.

UPDATE – March 2016Cuba Officials Have Approved Carnival’s Bid!


Carnival Cruise lines has announced plans to offer cruises to Cuba from Miami starting in 2016!  Earlier this week it was announced that MSC cruises was also offering cruises to Cuba. Carnival will be offering cruises departing Miami on a 7 day “people to people” cruise which emphasizes social impact through a newly established Carnival brand called “fathom.”

The Fathom concept was announced in June, and offers cruises that allow vacationers to experience a cruise while at the same time, making an impact in underdeveloped countries through service projects that are arranged by fathom.

Carnival has already received approvals from the United States government for these unique vacations and are currently waiting on Cuban authorities to approve the plans.

Fathom cruises are offered through a single ship in the Carnival fleet; The Adonia, which is a 710 passenger ship that’s been sailing with Carnival brand P&O cruises and with Princess cruise lines since the parent company acquired it in 2006.

Traveling on a social impact vacation like fathom plans to offer doesn’t come cheap. 7 night cruises will start at just under $3000USD per person.

Helpful Miami Links:

PortMiami Info

Fly & Cruise Hotel Packages

Park & Cruise Hotel Packages

Miami Cruiseport Parking

 

 

miami to cuba cruises

About Jonathon Hyjek

Jonathon is the tech guy behind CruiseportAdvisor.com. When he's not stuck in front of his computer, Jonathon enjoys travel & cruising (even after being on a cruise ship that caught fire - a story for another day!)

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No More Bringing Bottled Water on Carnival Cruises

Last updated on February 25th, 2020 at 01:07 pm

 

UPDATE: Read our full post on Cruise Line Policies regarding bringing bottled water, soda and wine onboard.

Carnival CruisesCarnival announced today that effective July 9, 2015, passengers will no longer be allowed to carry on their own plastic-bottled beverages.

Why? Too many passengers are trying to smuggle alcohol on board, disguising it as bottled water or soda.

According to USA Today, bottled water will still be available at a discounted price – a 12 pack for 2.99 if purchased before sailing and $4.99 onboard.

Beverages in unopened cans or cartons, such as juice boxes, will still be permitted (maximum 12), but must be carried on and not as part of checked luggage.

Passengers may still carry on a single bottle of wine or champagne.

Artwalk Logo

A Treat for the “Art Lovers”

Last updated on January 5th, 2018 at 03:40 pm

Photo from http://www.downtownartwalk.org/
Photo from http://www.downtownartwalk.org/

Take a stroll on the Downtown LA Art Walk, a popular Los Angeles attraction that takes place every 2nd Thursday of the month, and learn what the LA art world is all about.  The event goes from 12pm-10pm (Specific times vary by gallery), and features various exhibitions in local galleries, along with surrounding activities taking place at neighboring venues.  The exciting part of this event is the diverse groups of people who walk the streets from sun up to sun down, mingling and admiring the local talent together.

This month’s Art Walk will take place on Thursday, November 13th.  Some of the must see Art Shows include “Streetscapes: Downtown Los Angeles,” showing at the Blackstone Gallery, and the photographic exhibit “Pool,” showing at the Carol Cirillo Stanley Studio Gallery.  You may also want to check out the live painting that will take place in front of the Downtown Art Mart by Haider Ali, a talented Pakistani truck artist.

Art Walk LA also features an intimate art lounge, where other exciting events will be held, including an art show from the featured artist.  This month’s featured artist is Alex Schaefer.  Also, in honor of Latino Heritage month, there will be activities and giveaways held in the lounge celebrating Latino contributions in our society.

So, if you happen to find yourself in LA on the November 13th, make it a point to take a trip to downtown LA, because needless to say, it will be a sight to see.  Walk, eat, socialize, and admire!  Maybe even buy?  If you are into a relaxing yet eventful social environment, then this is the event for you!

Detailed location/time information can be found at www.downtownartwalk.org.

About Melanie Eke

Melanie Eke is a TV/Radio Personality and Blogger from Los Angeles, CA specializing in Lifestyle/Travel and the Road to Success. Melanie found her way into Hosting as an On-Camera interviewer for Los Angeles events and award show red carpets. She quickly developed a passion for sharing exciting experiences with viewers, and began developing her own video content, exposing viewers to places to go and things to do and see around Los Angeles. Currently, Melanie is a Co-Host on the Generation U Radio Show—a topic, comedy, and music driven online radio show. Melanie also recently launched a web based show, “Road to Success: Action Tip of the Week, highlighting valuable action steps taken by accomplished people to (YouTube.com/MelanieCEke: Action Tip of the Week), or on VertroTV via ROKU TV reach their goals. The show can be viewed via YouTube and FILMON TV.

Quantum of the Seas

Royal Caribbean Takes Technology to New Heights (Literally!)

Last updated on January 20th, 2020 at 01:03 pm

Quantum | Taking Technology to New Heights
Photo credit: Traveloscopy / Foter / CC BY

This fall, Royal Caribbean launches what will be the world’s third largest cruise ship, the Quantum of the Seas. This will be Royal Caribbean’s twenty-second ship, and the first of their “Quantum class.” The cruise industry, as well as regular cruise passengers, have waited anxiously for this ship as it introduces some of the most advanced technology at sea. Following are some of the unique features you’ll find if you’re lucky enough to cruise on this exciting new ship:

10 Minute Check-In??

Let’s start with their SMART Check-in; we all hate waiting with thousands of other people in the cruise terminal. Admit it, when you book a cruise, you want it to be all about you. Well, SMART Check-In helps with that as you can do most of your pre-boarding paperwork online. Check-in online, board the ship, tap your barcode and swipe your passport, and you’re golden! Ten-minutes from sidewalk to ship! “Well,” you say, “I’m on the ship, but my luggage is hopelessly lost.” Good thing they also offer the Royal iQ app where you can track your luggage as it moves from the sidewalk, to the ship, to your stateroom. Yup, I’ll be waiting in the bar to be notified when my luggage arrives.

What to do, what to do?

Now that you’re onboard, what’s there to do? Really? I can see that you’re going to be difficult, so here goes; we’ll start with indoor skydiving. Yes, you heard me, indoor skydiving! Royal Caribbean has partnered with RipCord by iFly® to create this adrenaline filled, flying-but-not-flying experience. Feel like clowning around?

Bumper cars in the SeaPlex on Royal Caribbean ships
SeaPlex® – Indoor Activity Venue  Royal Caribbean

At SeaPlex SM you can go to Circus School, go roller skating or hop in a bumper car and purposely drive into other things (don’t worry, the captain didn’t train here). Still need a bit more excitement? Step into North Star SM. After boarding this jewel-shaped capsule, you’ll be elevated to 300 feet above sea-level for spectacular 360-degree views of the ship, the ocean, and even incredible views of the ports you’ll call on.

The Bartender is Bionic

I don’t know about you, but after all this excitement I’m going to need a drink! I think I’ll wander up to the Bionic Bar. Order a drink here and be entertained by simply watching it being made. No, you haven’t had too much to drink (well, I don’t think so anyway), those are robotic arms preparing your drink. I’m not sure how good of a listener it is but, hopefully, you won’t have any troubles to share with this bartender.

Close up of the robot arms that mix drinks at the bionic bar.
Bionic Bar® Robot Cruise Bar Royal Caribbean Cruises

Robots aren’t just employed for their bartending skills here, they’re also entertainers. Head over to Two70 for a drink where, during the day, you’ll find incredible views of the vast ocean and colorful ports, and, at night, well, you have to see it to believe it. Featuring the awe‑inspiring Vistarama, and dancing Roboscreens® which are as much a part of the show as the performers, this venue offers the most complex and technologically advanced video projection entertainment system at sea.

Dining Choices

Finally, with eighteen restaurants, no set dining times, and no required formal nights, you’ll have flexibility in dining throughout your cruise. From casual dining to fancy-shmancy, you’ll enjoy lots of choices.

The ship was built in Papenburg, Germany and will make its trans-Atlantic voyage on November 2. Following that, it will be christened in Bayonne, New Jersey by godmother Kristin Chenoweth . Head to Royal Caribbean to find out more or to book your cruise.

About Carole Rosenblat

Carole Rosenblat has worked in the travel industry for twenty-years, with over eight of them on board cruise ships. She’s also worked in hotels, as a tour manager, a camping/adventure tour guide and as a worldwide logistical manager for corporate meetings and incentives. She currently speaks to university classes, corporate groups, travel clubs and children’s groups about working on cruise ships, living a passionate life, working in travel, volunteering, and female and children’s empowerment. She’s owner, writer and chief adventurer for the website Drop Me Anywhere, an informational travel humor site concentrating on travel without a plan, which she’s turning into a book. Readers vote on where she travels to with minimal planning. She also volunteers while on location and profiles the organization on her philanthropic site Rebel-With-A-Cause. You can find her general observational humor at My Own Adventure.