Family Staterooms

Gone are the days a family of 2 adults and 2 children is the norm.

Hands up who has tried to organise a family holiday?  Hands up who gets frustrated with the assumption a family stops at a total of 4 people?  Hands up who doesn’t want to squeeze 4 people into a small stateroom?  Hands up who wants some privacy on holiday?

Well, it is time to cruise into cruising.  Cruise lines have seen the growing trend of families with more than two children, blended families, multi generations traveling together and parents who would like their kids close, just not too close!

What have they done you ask?  They have created a number of stateroom options to suit our ever-changing society.

Today we are going to focus on Royal Caribbean.  Based in our waters over the peak family holiday season (OCT-APR), they have great options for all families.

As there are limited numbers of these staterooms, we recommend you book ahead to secure your place.

So, let’s take a look at what they have to offer!

The ships visiting us for the 18/19 and 19/20 summers are:
*          Radiance of the Seas
*          Explorer of the Seas
*          Voyager of the Seas
*          Ovation of the Seas

These ships have a multitude of stateroom options.  Highlighted below are the larger of the stateroom categories and those accommodating more than 4 guests in one stateroom.

OVATION OF THE SEAS

Junior Suite – Stateroom: 267 sq. ft. Balcony: 81 sq. ft.
Bedroom area with two twin beds that convert to Royal King. Full bathroom with tub. Sitting area with sofa that converts to double bed. Private balcony. Sleeps up to 4 guests plus infant in crib.

Junior Suite with Large Balcony – Stateroom: 276 sq. ft. Balcony: 161 sq. ft.
Bedroom area with two twin beds that convert to Royal King. Full bathroom with tub. Sitting area with sofa that converts to double bed. Private balcony.
Sleeps up to 4 guests.

Grand Suite 1 Bedroom – Stateroom: 351 sq. ft. Balcony: 109 sq. ft.
Bedroom area with two twin beds that convert to Royal King. Full bathroom with tub, two sinks and second entrance that opens to living room. Living room with sofa that converts to double bed, entertainment centre, and writing desk. Private balcony with seating area and private dining.
Sleeps up to 4 guests.

Grand Suite with Large Balcony – Stateroom: 351 sq. ft. Balcony: 259 sq. ft.
Bedroom area with two twin beds that convert to Royal King. Full bathroom with tub, two sinks and second entrance that opens to living room. Living room with sofa that converts to double bed, entertainment centre, and writing desk. Wrap around private balcony with seating area and private dining.
Sleeps up to 4 guests.

Grand Suite 2 Bedrooms
– Stateroom: 543 sq.ft. Balcony: 259 sq.ft.
Two bedrooms, two bathrooms.  Master bedroom with two twin beds that convert to a king, private bathroom with tub and separate dressing area. Second bedroom with two twin beds that convert to a king and two Pullman beds. Full second bathroom with shower. Living area with sofa that converts to a double bed. Marble entry and entertainment centre. Wrap around private balcony with seating area and private outdoor dining.
Sleeps up to 8 guests.

Owner’s Suite
– Stateroom: 541 sq. ft. Balcony: 259 sq. ft.  1 Bedroom, bedroom area with two twin beds that convert to Royal King. Full bathroom with tub and two sinks. Separate half bath. Marble entry, large closets, living area with dining table and sofa that converts to double bed. Private balcony with seating area and private outdoor dining.
Sleeps up to 4 guests.

Sky Loft Suite – Stateroom: 673 sq. ft. Balcony: 183 sq. ft.
Two decks high with panoramic views.  One bedroom, two bathrooms.  On main level, open living/dining room with sofa that converts to double bed. Full bathroom with shower. Private balcony with dining area. On second level, master bedroom has a King size bed with Duxiana Mattress and a bathroom with shower and two sinks.
Sleeps up to 4 guests.

Owner’s Loft Suite
– Stateroom: 975 sq. ft. Balcony 501 sq. ft.
Two decks high with panoramic views.  One bedroom, two bathrooms.  Main level has open living/dining room with double sofa bed, bathroom and private wrap around balcony with dining area. On second level, master bedroom has a King size bed with Duxiana Mattress, bathroom with shower and two sinks, and private balcony.
Sleeps up to 4 guests.

Grand Loft Suite – Stateroom: 696 sq. ft. Balcony: 216 sq. ft.
Two decks high with panoramic views.  One bedroom, two bathrooms.  Main level has open living/dining room with double sofa bed, bathroom and private balcony with dining area. On second level, master bedroom has a King size bed with Duxiana Mattress and bathroom.
Sleeps up to 4 guests.

Royal Loft Suite – Stateroom: 1,640 sq.ft. Balcony: 553 sq.ft.
Two decks high with panoramic views. One bedroom, two bathrooms. Main level open living/dining room with dry bar and sofa that converts to double bed. Separate media room with queen-size sofa bed, second bedroom with closet and two twin beds that convert to king and full bathroom with shower. Large private balcony with dining area. Master bedroom on second level has king-size bed and a private bathroom with soaking tub, shower, two sinks and bidet. Private balcony with whirlpool tub.
Sleeps up to 6 guests.

Family Interconnecting – Consists of 3 booking individual stateroom categories.  All staterooms are connected, in theory you have a 3 room, 3 bathroom stateroom accommodating a total of 7 guests, made up of the following:
1.         Junior Suite with Large Balcony (max. occupancy 4 guests)
2.         Ocean View Balcony (max. occupancy 2 guests)
3.         Studio Interior (max. occupancy 1 guest)

Studio Interior – Stateroom: 101 sq. ft.
Full size bed and full bathroom. Enjoy Virtual Views of real-time scenery via your flat-screen television. Single occupancy stateroom, no single supplement required.

Studio Ocean View Balcony – Stateroom: 119 sq. ft. Balcony: 55 sq. ft.
full size bed, full bathroom and private balcony. Single occupancy stateroom, no single supplement required.

VOYAGER/EXPLORER OF THE SEAS

Ultra-Spacious Ocean View – Stateroom 262 sq.ft.
Two twin beds that convert to king, two Pullman beds in separate area, separate sitting area with sofa bed and bathroom.
Sleeps up to 6 guests.

Ocean View Panoramic – Stateroom 406 sq.ft.
Two twin beds that convert to king. Curtained section with bunk beds. Living area with double sofa bed, vanity and sitting area. One and a half baths with shower.
Sleeps up to 6 guests.

Junior Suite – Stateroom 264 sq.ft. Balcony 75 sq.ft.
Two twin beds that convert to king-size bed, private balcony, sitting area with sofa and bathroom with tub.
Sleeps up to 4 guests plus infant in crib (selected staterooms).

Grand Suite 1 Bedroom – Stateroom: 349 sq. ft. Balcony: 95 sq. ft.
Marble entry. Room has two twin beds that convert to Royal King, private balcony, sitting area with double sofa bed and bathroom with tub.

Grand Suite 2 Bedrooms – Stateroom 561 sq.ft. Balcony 246 sq.ft
Two bedrooms with twin beds that convert to king-size bed (one room with third and fourth Pullman beds), two bathrooms (one with tub) and living area with double sofa bed. Sleeps up to 8 guests.

Owner’s Suite – Stateroom: 559 sq. ft. Balcony 64 sq.ft.
1 Bedroom with queen-size bed, bathroom with tub. Separate living area with a queen-size sofa bed.
Sleeps up to 4 guests plus infant in crib (selected staterooms).

Royal Suite with Balcony – Stateroom: 1,087 sq. ft.  Balcony 196 sq. ft.
Grand entrance with doorbell. Bedroom with king-size bed, and private bathroom with tub, private balcony with whirlpool, living room with queen-size sofa bed and baby grand piano.
Sleeps up to 4 guests plus infant in crib (selected staterooms).

RADIANCE OF THE SEAS

Junior Suite – Stateroom: 299 sq. ft. Balcony: 66 sq. ft.
Two twin beds which can convert to king, private balcony, sitting area with sofa bed and private bathroom with tub. Sleeps up to 4 guests plus infant in crib (selected staterooms).

Grand Suite – Stateroom: 385 sq. ft. Balcony: 106 sq. ft.
1 Bedroom with two twin beds which can convert to king, private balcony, sitting area with double sofa bed.  Bathroom with tub and double sink.  Sleeps up to 4 guests plus infant in crib (selected staterooms).

Owner’s Suite – Stateroom: 512 sq. ft. Balcony: 57 sq. ft.
1 Bedroom with queen-size bed, bathroom with whirlpool tub, double sink and bidet. Separate living area with a double sofa bed. Sleeps up to 4 guests plus infant in crib (selected staterooms).

Royal Suite with Balcony
– Stateroom: 1,001 sq. ft. Balcony: 172 sq. ft.
Bedroom with king-size bed, and private bathroom with tub, double sink and bidet. Private balcony, living room with queen-size sofa bed and baby grand piano. Sleeps up to 4 guests plus infant in crib (selected staterooms).

Owner’s Suite 2 Bedroom – Stateroom: 584 sq. ft. Balcony: 151 sq. ft.
Two bedrooms with two twin beds that convert to king (one room with up to 4 Pullman beds), two bathrooms (one with shower, one with bathtub), living area with double sofa bed, private balcony.  Sleeps up to 8 guests.

INTERCONNECTING CABINS

In addition to Ovation of the Sea’s Family Interconnecting, Royal Caribbean has a number of staterooms which interconnect.  This is a very cost effective way to keep your family close, with privacy.  The added bonus is each stateroom can be sold individually, every stateroom has a bathroom.  Having multiple bathrooms on a cruise ship comes in very handy.

Hopefully this helps explain the multitude of options on offer.  For more clarification please contact us.

What to pack for your Cruise!

Packing your case can be a daunting prospect.  How do you know how much, or how little, to take on your cruise?

The image which runs through my head before any trip is of Edina Monsoon from Absolutely Fabulous.  Arms flying about, running around, yelling, “TICKETS, MONEY, PASSPORT, TICKETS, MONEY, PASSPORT!”  If you have these bare essentials you are pretty much set.  But if you like to be slightly more organised we have put together a simple list to get you through you cruise.

Some cruise lines are more casual than others; make sure you check the cruise line’s website for dress code, formal evenings and/or any theme nights.  A great place to start is to access your booking using your cruise line confirmation number.  Each cruise line has a personaliser with information specifically for your voyage.

Next and most importantly, check the forecast for your destination before you go!

Carry On:

Your check-in luggage may take a bit of time being delivered to your cabin, so it’s good to have these items with you when you board.

  • Passport/Visas (or driver’s license for Australian domestic cruises)
  • Travel documents – boarding pass, itinerary, insurance documents, baggage labels
  • Credit/Debit card & cash – You’ll need to set up your on-board expense  account at the start of your cruise
  • A small amount of local currency for shore days
  • Swimwear – So you can take a dip straight away!
  • Any prescription medication
  • Sunglasses
  • Mobile, tablet and/or camera and chargers
  • Hat & sunscreen
  • Your holiday reading – Book/magazine etc.

Check In:

  • Underwear/Socks
    My Nan would recommend at least two pairs for each day.
  • Comfortable and versatile clothes for during the day
    Try to avoid overloading your suitcase by choosing items that can be layered or mix-and-matched.
  • Shoes
    Thongs are fine for sitting by the pool but don’t forget to pack a pair of more formal shoes for dinner/formal nights.  Pack a pair of good walking shoes for shore tours and if you’re planning on visiting the gym, a good pair of sneakers.
  • Formal clothing to wear to dinner
    The level of formality will depend on the individual cruise line.  Long pants and a collared shirt for men, either a dress or pants/skirt with an evening blouse for women.

Swimwear, shorts, jeans, tank tops and thongs are generally not allowed to be worn in the restaurants.

  • A light rain jacket or cardigan
    Regardless of the temperature outside you might need something warmer inside if the air-conditioning is cooler than you would have it at home.
  • Sleepwear

  • Toiletries
    Take up a lot of space and weight.  Try using smaller containers.
  • Tooth brush/paste
  • Shaving supplies
  • Deodorant
  • Hair/skin care products (shampoo, conditioner, hair brush, hair gel, moisturiser etc.)
  • Hair styling appliances
  • Make-Up, perfume, aftershave
  • Personal products
  • Anything else you think you might need

The cruise line will provide soap and shampoo in your bathroom.  However, if you prefer certain brands it’s better to bring your own.

  • Accessories
    If you are planning on glamming up for the evening remember your jewellery.  If you have sentimental items you would hate to lose, leave them at home and take the genuine fake instead!
  • Travel adapter
    Not all ships are fitted with Australian sockets.
  • Music Speakers
    It is great listening to your favourite tunes on holiday.  But remember you are travelling with other guests who may not share your taste in music; this is best kept inside the cabin.
  • Small bag/backpack
  • Travel guides
  • Your travel journal and pen

 

If we’ve left something off the list you think is essential please let us know!

 

Taking Drinks on to your Cruise

Thinking that drinks on board the ship are too expensive and you want to save some money by taking your own drinks on board.  We have compiled a list of what you are able to take on board your cruise.

Let’s face it the cruise lines do not want you to take alcohol on board as it will limit their profits.  Most do however allow you to take a bottle of two when embarking for the first time on your cruise.

Here is a list of the amount of Alcohol allowed to be taken on board the cruise lines:

1 x Bottle of Wine or Champagne per person (max. 2 bottles per cabin)

  • Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruise Lines, Princess Cruise Lines, Holland America Cruise Lines and Cunard Cruise Lines.

Liquor, Beer or Wine for Private Consumption

  • Azamara Cruise Lines

1 x Litre of Alcohol per person can be taken on board upon embarkation

  • P&O World Voyages

No Alcohol taken on board

  • P&O Australia Cruise Lines, Norwegian Cruise Lines and MSC Cruise Lines

These drinks can be consumed in your room, on your balcony, or on a deck outside of the bars and restaurants.  However, if you choose to consume the alcohol in a restaurant, or bar on board, a corkage fee will be charged.  The fee is approximately $10 to $25 per bottle.

For those who don’t drink alcohol and want to take drinks on board, each cruise line is different.  Generally you can bring:

  • 12 x 600ml bottles or cans of soft drink/water. These must be loose and in your luggage and sealed cans or bottles.

As the rules differ from cruise line to cruise line it is best to check with us before you go.  There is no real need to take water on board the ship, water stations can be found inside and out on deck.

If you want to take water on shore with you, we recommend packing your own water bottle and filling it on board.  This is a far better solution for the environment, who wants more than 2000 plastic water bottles left behind on land around the world each day.

Are we there yet? Cruising with Kids

Family holidays are no longer driving long distances with kids in the back of the car infuriatingly asking, “Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?” This is only during a domestic road trip, imagine travelling further afield, to Europe or the US for instance, the complaining will be even worse. Not only do you have to keep them quiet for 24 hours on a plane there and back; they need constant entertainment the entire time you are away.

Cruise ships have come to the party! Kids clubs make a family holiday enjoyable for kids and parents alike. Each day of the cruise your children will be occupied and having a blast for little or no cost depending on the age of your child. Instead of, “are we there yet?” it is, “I’m not leaving, we have not finished making our movie”, or “the dance party has not finished!”

Most cruise ships offer a Kids Club and age appropriate activities for all children to enjoy. Kids clubs are not just for the little ones, there are teen areas for the older kids to hang, without feeling like being in childcare. Kids clubs have been described as an incredibly fun and totally edu-taining adventure. Careful you may not see the kids for the whole holiday.

We are going to look at three of the most common cruise lines that offer family holidays. The three are P&O Australia, Carnival Australia and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. These all offer kids clubs but there are some differences that you should know before booking the cruise. These three cruise lines inform us that all their staff are trained and experience child care professionals. This is to ensure the safety of your children as well as enjoying their time in the clubs.

All cruise lines require the kids to be toilet trained and nappy free to attend the club. All clubs are broken into age groups so all age groups do not feel overwhelmed by older or younger children.

Royal Caribbean’s – Adventure Ocean Kids Club

The four ships in Australia from Royal Caribbean are; Ovation, Explorer, Voyager and Radiance of the Seas.

  • All four have the Adventure Ocean kids club for ages 3-17yrs old
  • Only Ovation and Radiance of the Seas also have a dedicated nursery for those from 6-36 months. The cost is $6USd per hour during the day and $8USD per hour at night.
  • You can also pre-order huggies nappies, baby wipes and cream, along with Gerber organic baby food.
  • Babysitting available in cabin for an hourly rate for children 1 yrs and above.

The four age groups for Royal Caribbean are:

  • Aquanauts (3-5 yrs) – The highlight activity is the pirate party parade for the kids. Parents can have the comfort of a pager to be alerted if the little one is upset.
  • Explorers (6-8 yrs) – This age groups highlight activity is the dance and ice cream party, both at the same time, and adventure theatre.
  • Voyagers (9-11 yrs) – These guys do some awesome things such as the hilarious talent show and the very competitive sports tournament.
  • Teens (12 – 14 yrs) –There is a range of organised team activities for this age group. Most popular are the scavenger hunts, arcade challenges and rock climbing competitions. They also have time in the evening for the moonlight cinema and pool parties.
  • Teens (15 – 17 yrs) – This is more like a chill zone than organised activities. Those that want it can attend the teen spa, pool party and teen dinners.

Don’t forget for the whole family is Family time dining. The whole family go to dinner together, kids are served first so they don’t miss out on any of the fun! Parents are left to enjoy the rest of their dinner at leisure, DATE NIGHT! On Ovation of the Seas and Voyager of the Seas make sure you check out one of the Dreamworks shows. Have your photo taken with Shrek, dance with Melman the Giraffe, or share some ninja moves with Po the Kung Fu Panda.

 

Carnival Cruise Lines – Camp Ocean Kids Club

The three ships in Australian waters are the Carnival Spirit, Legend and Splendour has a minimum age of 2 years.

Carnival also has their own take on the kids club:

  • Penguin Colony (2-5 yrs) – They have activities like an ocean themed take on musical chairs with musical icebergs.
  • Stingrays (6-8 yrs) – These kids attend the pirate game night in their favourite pirate outfit and feed their artistic side with sea salt art.
  • Sharks (9-11 yrs) – They create a giant ocean mural and play a very competitive game of ocean soccer and ocean volleyball.
  • Nightowl (2-11 yrs) – For a small fee the kids can have a late night play with friends while you have some parent time.
  • Circle C (12 – 14 yrs) – They are still at an age where the dance parties are fun and inclusive, there is also outdoor movies for the kids.
  • Club O2 (15 – 17 yrs) – These guys have their own non-alcoholic bar. Dance floor and laze about area. Some ships and destinations have teen shore excursions as well.

For the family there is the Dr Seuss Character parade.

Photo from carnival

P&O Australia – Kids Club

P&O does not have a specific name for their kids club but all the ships in Australia have the club on board. The minimum age on the Pacific Dawn, Explorer, Aria, Eden and Jewel have a minimum age for the kids club of 2 yrs.

  • P&O do not have a pre-booked baby food or nappy service. They can store formula and baby food for you.
  • There is no in room child minding service or one on one supervision available on board.
  • There is group child minding for ages 2 – 12 yrs in Turtle Cove from 10.30pm to 1 am.
  • Kids club is not guaranteed but is first come first served.

P&O Kids Club

  • Turtle Cove (2-6 yrs) – The little ones can play with the Duplo play centre, create arts and crafts and theme nights.
  • Shark Shack (7-10 yrs) – The kids will make you a keepsake jewellery item, search for gold in the scavenger hunt and build on their dance skills with the dance lessons.
  • HQ (11 – 14 yrs) – Budding filmmakers and actors will enjoy the club learning how to make films and the talent show.
  • HQ+ (15-17 yrs) – This amazing zone is very private from the stresses of little brothers and sisters or those worrisome parents. This is a hangout place with movie making and other activities for the older teen.

For the family there is the Nickelodeon movie nights in the youth centre or zap the kids at laser tag.

If the kids are being entertained this allows the parents to have a holiday as well. Many parents will say my kids will not go to the kids club, give a try if it is not for them it has cost you nothing.

 

Let’s talk Gratuities

The idea of paying someone for the service we expect is foreign to Australians. This practice is very common and expected in most parts of the world. Cruises are no exception; crew members expect a gratuity payment for their service. The reason for this expectation is they are paid a minimal monthly wage from the cruise line. Some crew work more than 10hours each day of your cruise to ensure that it is an extraordinary experience for you.

As someone who has worked on a cruise line I would not have survived, or even worked, without a gratuity income. My wage from the cruise line was $500 per month for working 6 days a week and up to 12hours a day. Don’t get me wrong it was a wonderful experience, but I would not work for 72 hours a week for a weekly pay of $125 (which is about $1.75 an hour.) How many of us would?

So why should we as Australians pay gratuities on a cruise?

Most cruise lines in Australia incorporate the gratuities within the fare. They do this for two main reasons:

  1. This is to ensure the crew members are financially rewarded for the amazing cruise experience they provide. If no one paid gratuities, the cruise line would find it difficult to entice the best crew members to work on ships visiting Australia. Crew members will take contracts on ships where they can receive an income based on the service they provide.
    Lack of quality crew members became an issue for the cruise lines prior to gratuities being incorporated in the cruise fare.
  2. To keep cruising an affordable holiday option for most Australians. Without this affordability the cruise market in Australia would reduce, and Australians would not have the choice of cruise line and ships that currently visit our waters. A thriving market has meant that the Australian cruising public are enjoying new ships visiting our waters, ships such as the Majestic Princess, Ovation of the Seas and the Viking Sun.

Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Azamara, Silverseas, Seabourn, Carnival Australia and P&O Australia are just a few cruise lines who include gratuities in your fare. Everyone is a winner! The crew are happy, which filters to a better experience for you, the guest. It also ensures you do not have to worry about tipping. Let’s be honest, it is not in our culture and we can find it daunting.

Princess Cruise Lines has the gratuities included in the fare if the cruise starts and ends in Australian ports.

When you ask your cabin steward to deliver breakfast to your cabin, or bring you a second helping of your favourite desert, think to yourself, would I do that for $1.75 an hour?

You may be able to find a low price for your cruise by purchasing through a non-Australian website; however you will be charged gratuities on board the ship. The standard gratuity is from US$13.00pp per day. You will need to factor this in when looking for that extra low price on a foreign cruise website. Are you really getting a good deal from these websites?

When you are comparing price, also check your vulnerability. Are you covered for insolvency when booking on a foreign website?  If they are not an AFTA or ATAS Australian Accredited Agent, how safe is your money?

Let’s talk Drink Packages!

At Cruise Offers we are often asked about drink packages aboard the ships. The questions are:

1. Which cruise lines have drinks packages?
2. And, are these drinks packages really worth the money?

When we talk drink packages we are talking here about the alcohol packages, because what is a cruise for, if not sitting back and enjoying a cocktail or two as the world sails by. Here we are going to discuss the four most common cruise lines in Australia; P&O, Royal Caribbean, Carnival and Princess Cruise Lines.

Buy a Drinks Package – Yes or No? The approximate cost of the package for each cruise line is below. The price is per person for each day of your cruise. The package allows for unlimited (*Subject to the responsible service of alcohol) drinks for any drink of $14 or less including gratuities. This means you would need to drink at a minimum of 5 drinks per day for each day of the cruise. Most cruises include days ashore in port.

So you need to ask am I going to drink about 5 drinks each day including port days?

Below is a list of the cruise lines and their drinks packages:

P&O Australia – Included in the Value Plus Fare or for sale via Cruise Personaliser on cruises 7 nights or longer. The drinks package is approximately $69 per person per day.

Carnival Cruise Lines – No drinks packages available for purchase.

Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines – Purchased via Cruise Personaliser prior to cruise in Australian dollars or on board in US dollars. The costs is somewhere between $60AUD-$90AUD per person per day approximately.

Princess Cruise Lines – In the process of changing their process. They can be purchased via the Cruise Personaliser for $87AUD per person per day on cruises of 7 nights duration or longer.

Each cruise line has their own set of rules and offers around drink packages, hopefully this has helped clear some of the confusion.

Time Lapse videos of World’s Largest Cruise Ship Harmony of the Seas

Timelapse of the world’s largest crew gathering on the world’s largest ship, Harmony of the Seas

Harmony of the Seas is abuzz with excitement as Royal Caribbean takes delivery of the 25th ship in its fleet. The world’s largest and most innovative ship is the new home to 2,100 crew from 77 nationalities after 32 months of construction in Saint Nazaire, France.

Harmony of the Seas

Harmony of the Seas is the world’s largest cruise ship with a bold and unexpected lineup of experiences found nowhere else on land or sea. An architectural marvel, Harmony of the Seas combines the distinct seven neighborhood concept that Royal Caribbean’s Oasis class of ships are known for with some of the most modern and groundbreaking amenities. Innovative features include The Ultimate Abyss, a thrilling slide 10 stories high – the tallest at sea, robot bartenders, virtual balconies with real-time views of the destination for interior rooms, and VOOM – the fastest internet at sea – so that guests can stay connected, stream their favorite entertainment and share their adventures.

Top 10 Cruising Innovations for 2016

From the bionic bartenders to bumper cars at sea, cruise ship innovations have reached new heights. These are our favourites that will be making waves in 2016.

The SeaWalk on Regal Princess

At 60 feet long and hovering 128 feet above the ocean, the Princess SeaWalk offers an exciting experience for both kids and adults. Featuring a dramatic glass-bottomed walkway, the SeaWalk provides passengers with unparalleled views of the sea below.

The SeaWalk on Regal Princess

iFLY Skydiving on Ovation of the Seas

RipCord by iFLY is the first ever skydiving simulator at sea. Discover the thrill of skydiving in a completely safe and controlled environment without ever leaving the deck.

iFLY Skydiving on Ovation of the Seas

Robotic bartenders on Ovation of the Seas

These robots can muddle, stir, shake, and strain a drink to perfection. The cocktail combinations are endless with 30 different spirits and 20 different mixers. The robots can mix up to two cocktails a minute with laser precision and thirst-quenching results. Also available on Quantum of the Seas

Robotic bartenders on Ovation of the Seas

Chef’s Table on P&O’s Pacific Eden

An exclusive and private dining experience hosted by the ship’s Executive Chef. Includes a welcome reception with a glass of sparkling wine and canapés, a seven course degustation menu with matching wines, a tour of the ships galley, and professional photograph of the evening. Also available on Pacific Aria, Jewel, Dawn and Pearl

Chef’s Table on P&O’s Pacific Eden

Virtual Balcony on Ovation of the Seas

Ocean views are now available to every interior stateroom with the cutting-edge technology of virtual balconies. A Virtual Balcony is an 80-inch high-definition screen inside interior staterooms that spans nearly floor to ceiling. They offer digital real-time views of the ocean and destinations visible from the ship’s exterior. Also available on Voyager, Explorer, Quantum and Harmony of the Seas

Virtual Balcony on Ovation of the Seas

Wraparound Promenade on Norwegian Escape

An industry-first, quarter-mile wraparound oceanfront promenade featuring the Waterfront, a wine and dining experience connecting you with the ocean while enjoying some of Norwegian’s signature dining venues, Restaurants, bars and stunning views

Wraparound Promenade on Norwegian Escape

Qsine iPad menus on Celebrity Silhouette

iPad menus create a new dining experience that’s fun and interactive. Expect to find some twists on familiar favourites, including sushi lollipops, lobster escargot, popcorn fish and chips, and much more. Also available on Celebrity Eclipse, Millennium, Summit and Infinity

Qsine iPad menus on Celebrity Silhouette

North Star on Ovation of the Seas

A jewel-like observation capsule the offers guests the ability to see the world from a breathtaking 90 metres above sea-level. This innovation will provide unprecedented 360-degree breathtaking views never before seen at sea.

North Star on Ovation of the Seas

Bumper Cars on Ovation of of the Seas

An innovation for adults and children alike, the Royal Caribbean bumper cars are the first at sea. They are part of the largest indoor active space at sea, with 30 bumper cars, a roller rink, full-size basketball court, a circus school, floating DJ booth and a resident food truck. Also available on Harmony of the Seas and Quantum of the Seas

Bumper Cars on Ovation of of the Seas

10 Story Slide on Harmony of the Seas

At 10 stories high, Harmony of the Seas’ Ultimate Abyss is not only the tallest slide at sea but also an amazing engineering feat. The new mega ship will be arriving in Europe in May 2016.

10 Story Slide on Harmony of the Seas

And for 2017?

A two-level floating race track on new Norwegian Cruise Lines ship. Its next luxury ship will include the world’s first two-level floating race track. The ship will travel a China-based route that sails from Beijing and Shanghai. launching in 2017.

Norwegian Cruise Lines  Racetrack

Cruise Offers awarded Bronze cruise agency of the year at CLIA Awards

Cruise Agency of the Year

Cruise Offers are very proud to have won the Bronze Award for Cruise Agency of the Year 2015 for the CLIA Cruise Industry Awards.

CLIA Awards recognise and reward outstanding achievements from CLIA Travel Agent members during the previous year.

Cruise Offers (Travelrite International) is the largest seller of Cunard Cruises and Princess Cruises in Australasia (Diamond Agent) and top sellers of Royal Carribean Cruises and Celebrity Cruises.

We are a family business that values integrity, quality and providing customers with the best value cruise holidays. Our combined experience in travelling the world as well as our extensive global contacts in the cruising sector enable us to provide the cruise experience of a lifetime!