Ask Adam Blog Series – June 2011 Answers

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We’re happy to bring everyone the latest round of answers in our “Ask Adam Blog Series.” You can read last month’s blog answers here. As always, a thank you goes out to everyone who has submitted questions. If you would like to submit a question for consideration in the next answers blog, you can do so on our Facebook discussion page.

Does Royal Caribbean’s Choice Air program allow guests to arrive at their destination several days prior to the sail date?  We are considering Mariner of the Seas this October.
-David M.

It’s always nice to be able to arrive at a departure port ahead of time so you can enjoy and explore a new city or country.  With Choice Air you are able to select fares that work with your schedule.  ChoiceAir offers nearly all published flights and fares as well as special rates offered only through us.  Of course, airlines limit the number of seats and with the volatility in pricing and fuel you may want to book early while great fares are available.  With ChoiceAir, you can also check out the “Flexfares” option, that allows you to hold flights without payment or obligation up until final payment is due on your cruise.  Those fares might be a little higher than instant purchase, but provide you with more flexibility.  As always, when you book ChoiceAir, you will receive our Assured Arrival service, so if flights are disrupted, we will do our best to get you on the next available commercial flight to Rome – or the next available port- at no additional cost to you.  Checkout the details of all these ChoiceAir features on the ChoiceAir website, or feel free to contact our support desk at choiceair@rccl.com or 800-533-7803. 

Is there a height restriction for ships coming to the Port of Baltimore? Can Radiance or Voyager class ships make it under the Chesapeake Bay and Key bridges?
-Jim M.

Good question Jim. Yes there is a height restriction.  Radiance class ships are able to clear the bridges however the Voyager and Freedom class ships cannot.

Any plans to bring back the roundtrip 14-night from San Diego to Hawaii?
-Maureen F.

At this time we are not planning to bring back the roundtrip 12 night sailing from San Diego to Hawaii.

Will you be sailing in New Zealand in 2012?
-Jenniver C.

Yes we will.  We opened our Australia and New Zealand sailing for the 2012-13 season on July 7.  You can learn more here.  We are very pleased that we will have 3 ships in the region for the 2012-13 season, including Voyager of the Seas.

Are there plans to build a pier at CocoCay, which would ensure that your cruise ships would not be prevented from calling on this private beach destination due to rough seas?
-Miriam E.

At this time we do not have plans to build a pier at CocoCay.  However we have expanded our tendering capacity at CocoCay so if a ship misses this port early in their cruise they may have the option to swap the ports of call in terms of itinerary order.  For example, we may swap the itinerary order of Nassau and CocoCay since we now have tender capacity to allow two ships to call on CocoCay on the same day.  We didn’t have that option in the past.  While we’ve had very few missed calls on CocoCay this year, it does still happen from time to time.

Are there plans for Royal Caribbean to keep a ship in New Orleans, LA on a year-round basis?
-Stephen O.

We are very happy to be going back to New Orleans.  We are introducing Navigator of the Seas, a newer Voyager class ship, to the market for winter 2012-13. While we have not yet made decisions for summer 2013 forward, we always look at demand and profitability in all markets to drive these decisions.

Will Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines be sailing out of San Juan, PR during June of 2012?  My heart’s desire has been to sail Royal Caribbean out of San Juan either the first or second week of June 2012 for my 40th birthday vacation.  I contacted your customer service department several times, and each time was given a new date when the deployment would be announced.
-Angie B.

Angie, I am sorry that you received inconsistent information and I appreciate your support for this product.  This was a decision that we put much thought into however ultimately we decided to deploy Serenade of the Seas to Europe for the summer of 2012.  There are no plans to change this or have a different ship deployed in San Juan during the summer of 2012.

Considering the ever present concern over fuel surcharges, do you foresee any energy technologies that would be beneficial to cruise ships? I know most folks would be seriously uncomfortable with the idea of a nuclear reactor on board, especially with recent events in Japan, but what options have you seen, if any, that would be the next great thing for ocean travel (that don’t involve oars in the Deck 2 oceanview cabins of course…)? Thanks!
-William B
 
The cruise industry is faced with two primary energy challenges: how to efficiently provide clean secure and affordable energy, and how to minimize our impact on the environment related to our air emissions and greenhouse gas footprint.  To meet these challenges, we are continually seeking and implementing ways to reduce our energy use and air emissions. 

We are committed to reducing our greenhouse gas emissions by one-third per person per day by 2015, from a 2005 baseline. In fact in 2010, these efforts translated into a 4.7-percent reduction in fuel consumption per average passenger cruise day over 2009 levels.  Our goal for 2011 is to reduce our fuel consumption by another 5.4 percent as our Vice President for Environmental Stewardship and Global Chief Environmental Officer, Jamie Sweeting, mentioned in a recent blog.

We continue to research and implement innovative technologies in our new building and marine operations programs.  This includes improved hydrodynamics, propellers, propulsion and hull designs, all of which require less fuel per passenger mile traveled; adjusting ship speed to increase fuel efficiency; and focusing attention on current and future itinerary planning of individual sailings to optimize timing, route, speed and distances traveled.

We are also working to reduce energy consumption in our heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems.  While we applied solar window film on earlier ships in our fleet, we built our newest ships with advanced energy-efficient glass.  This reduces the load on our air-conditioning systems and has the added benefit of filtering out the sun’s ultraviolet rays.

Thanks again, everyone. We hope you all enjoyed reading these answers.  I continue to look forward to your questions each month.  If you have a question that you would like to ask, you may do so in this month’s discussion here.

  • Michelle Cake

    Do you have any plans on returning to the west coast in the future. Cost wise it’s easier for us in the southwest to get to california than florida or anywhere else.

  • Lynne Fraser

    Will there be any ships leaving from Southampton in December 2012 or January 2013? We are trying to plan a cruise for my husband’s 50th birthday, but there are no options shown for that time. The Independence leaves from Southampton in November 2012, will it just continue from there?

  • Stacey SPicer

    Will there ever be anymore cruises to Mexico?

  • Casey S

    Do you have any plans to bring any more ships to ports like San Pedro or Port Canaveral?

  • http://marys1928@sssnet.com Mary Smith

    I am disappointed that you are not considering a West Coast/Hawaii round trip. That was definitely on our bucket list. It is the only way I would want to go to Hawaii as the long flights from Ohio would be exhausting either pre- or post-cruise. Definitely a downer!

  • Dionne Warren-Palmer

    Are there any plans to have a Royal Caribbean ship leaving from Charleston, SC port in the future with different iternaries? We love the large ships, Oasis, and Allure, but the destinations are the same each year.

  • Royal Caribbean Team

    Michelle, Lynne, Stacey, Casey, Dionne, and Heather thank you for your questions. Be sure to check back to see if your question is selected for next month’s blog!

  • Elizabeth moten

    After reading Adam’s piece on the deployment of RCCL’s ships for 2012-2013, it disturbs me as a customer that you would have 11 ships in Europe, two in Asia, two in Alaska, two in the Northeast U.S., two in the Bahamas and three in the Caribbean. Can someone please explain to me the logic behind this decision because I feel as though it was not made with the consumer in mind. After looking at the schedule for next year, April, there are only 28 cruises going to the Caribbean and unfortunately, I have been to several of the locations more than once.
    I am sure that this decision was made with great care, thought and consideration for all parties involved, customers, shareholders, employees and communities, but there are those of us who have a feeling of abandonment due to the deployment of ships next year. I implore your to reconsider your decision in the deployment of your ships during next season. You have essentially abandoned one market and you are limiting the market in the South and the Northeast.
    As a loyal RCCL customer, my voice should carry just as much weight as your shareholders we are all in the business of ensuring that our “clients” satisfaction is of the most important when it comes to making business decisions. I am but one small voice in a sea of many; but I know that it only takes that one voice in order to get action.
    Thank you for taking the time to consider my request.

    Sincerely,

    Elizabeth (Liz) Moten

    • http://www.royalcaribbean.com Adam

      Elizabeth, thank you for your question. Be sure to check back to see if your question is selected for next month’s blog.