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What We Know About Royal Caribbean Group's Muster 2.0

16th September 2020

What We Know About Royal Caribbean Group's Muster 2.0

While it may not be the most exciting way to begin your cruise holiday, a muster drill is a completely necessary part of your time onboard. Required to take place within the first 24 hours of a cruise, the muster drill is designed to familiarise guests with emergency procedures. In the past this meant gathering in large groups, however, thanks to Royal Caribbean Group's virtual safety briefing, Muster 2.0, guests will be able to take part in the drill without even leaving their stateroom.

From the sound of the siren to where to meet on deck and how to put on a lifejacket quickly, it's essential that guests are aware of the emergency evacuation procedures on a cruise ship. In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, gathering large groups of people either on deck or in a theatre to take part in the briefing no longer seems to be a viable option. To adapt to the need for social distancing, Royal Caribbean have introduced Muster 2.0.

A virtual safety briefing which can be accessed through stateroom TVs or via an app, guests will be able to review all the information before heading to their muster point where a member of crew is on hand to check that all steps have been completed and answer any further questions. This will be available on Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises. Silversea, Azamara Cruises, TUI Cruises and Hapag-Lloyd.

However, it's not just through the Muster 2.0 Drill that the Royal Caribbean Group is using technology to enhance their onboard health and safety. Thanks to their app, there are several other ways in which cruise lines are reducing social contact between guests and crew:

  • Online check in
  • Allocated boarding times
  • Digital stateroom keys
  • Stateroom lighting, temperature, TV and windows controlled through the app
  • Entertainment, activities and dining reserved through the app

Thanks to this technology, guests will be able to enjoy their cruise knowing that the utmost is being done to ensure that social distancing is maintained from start to finish of their cruise. To find out more about other health and safety measures being introduced by cruise lines, visit our page on cruising with confidence.


Celebrity Cruises Announce Details of 2020 Ship

13th September 2018

Celebrity Cruises invited UK cruise agents to St Nazaire in France, to visit the shipyard in which the highly anticipated Celebrity Edge ships is being built. Whilst being shown around, the cruise line made another very exciting announcement, that of the details of their next big project: Celebrity Apex.

 

 

After seeing the hype and attention surrounding Celebrity Edge, this highly-esteemed cruise line resolved to bring another ship to the market. Celebrity Apex will be identical to her sister ship, offering cruisers some incredible, innovative design features, a wealth of accommodation choices, and outstanding dining. The Edge class of ships are said to elevate the meaning of modern luxury cruising. Every inch of the ships has been well-thought out and designed to a tee, with aspects like panoramic ocean views wherever possible, the fabulous ‘Dinner on the Edge’ experience on the cantilevered ‘Magic Carpet’, and more suites than any other Celebrity Cruises ship. We are especially excited about the twin-level Edge villas, which even feature an outdoor plunge pool.

 

 

Celebrity Apex is due to hit the waves in April 2020, after her naming ceremony in Southampton. This is an especially apt date as it will be ten years since Celebrity Cruises had another of their ships named in the UK, and operated from here too – Celebrity Silhouette. Lisa Lutoff-Perlo – Celebrity Cruises’ president and CEO – has said that Apex’s station in Southampton was decided upon in recognition of the strong UK cruise market. With British cruisers being eager for Celebrity Edge, it seems that Celebrity Apex will too be well-received.

The Godmother for Celebrity Apex is yet to be decided, but considering who Celebrity Cruises have chosen for other ships in the fleet, it seems likely that we can expect an inspiring, and well-respected individual. The globally admired, Nobel Prize-winning activist, Malala Yousafzai is Godmother to the Edge.

 

 

After her naming ceremony, Celebrity Apex will embark upon a mini-series of sailings out of the UK. More details about the itineraries will be available when she goes on sale on 29th November 2018. Pre-register your interest in Celebrity Apex today to ensure you are among the first to get more information and be given an opportunity to book your place onboard.


Are Cruise Lines Becoming Greener?

3rd September 2018

Fans of cruising can often find themselves wondering, ‘what are cruise lines doing to help and contribute towards protecting the environment?’ There are in fact a number of initiatives to reduce waste and carbon emissions, including the use of solar panels as well as powering private islands with waste materials. Cruise companies have been making great strides in increasing sustainability and protecting the environment, and this will only increase in the future .

 

 

How Are Cruise Lines Protecting the Environment?

 

Many cruise lines have backed plans to protect the various environments on their itineraries in several ways. For example, there's now an alliance between Carnival Cruise Lines and the International SeaKeepers Society, which monitors water quality in locations visited by Carnival Triumph and Carnival Spirit. Equipment is has been built into these ships to gather data wherever they are. This is then relayed via satellite to scientists at the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Miami, where they can keep on top of the water quality levels.

However, this is merely one example of many systems in place for monitoring the environment's health. There are groups all around the world dedicated to tracking this kind of data, including the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Science Foundation, the Office of Naval Research and the Southeast Atlantic Coastal Ocean Observing System.

 

What Changes Are Being Made to help the Environment?

 

One of the biggest and most common changes we’ve seen is to the hull on cruise ships. By painting the hull with silicon-based paint, the ships glide through water more efficiently, therefore saving fuel. Royal Caribbean Cruises have taken this a step further by designing aerodynamic hulls, increasing the benefit of this fuel-saving tactic.

Fuel is a key economic and environmental issue for cruise lines. Keeping the incredible ships afloat and operating at 100% takes a huge amount of energy. Today’s cruise ships can carry more 6,000 passengers and 2,000 crew members - which is the equivalent of a small town - but measures can be made to increase the efficiency of the fuel used.

 

 

Here are some examples of other positive changes:

  • The US National Park Service has taken measures to reduce the environmental impact of cruising in Alaska, and there are strict regulations for the passage through Glacier Bay. Only one ship at a time is permitted to enter the bay and the number of total visits per season is also restricted.
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  • Holland America Line has partnered with the US National Park Service and the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to protect whales in the oceans. Together their programmes educate mariners about recognising when whales are in close proximity and how to avoid them.
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  • Royal Caribbean has invested $100 million into converting wastewater treatment systems into advanced purification systems, and also uses over 18 million gallons of biodiesel used each year, a much more sustainable, renewable alternative to diesel.
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  • Disney Cruise Line recycle the condensation from air conditioning units and use it for things such as laundry or cleaning decks, which saves gallons of water per day. They also recycle a mix of materials onboard; some of which is processed by their partners, Keep America Beautiful - an organization which is all about preserving the environment.
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  • Celebrity Cruises, have heat transfer windows that allow more light, which then reduces the cooling needed in the cabin.
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  • Norwegian Cruise Line have adopted a number of different strategies to protect the environment and increase sustainability. The cruise line uses eco-ballast technology which is a water treatment system ensuring the ship doesn’t send toxins into the water, and donates cooking oil to farmers in port cities to be re-used as fuel. Steps have also been taken to remove the use of plastic straws across the entire fleet and Norwegian Cruise Line’s two private islands. Excitingly, a partnership with Ocean Conservancy means that the cruise line is the first to join the Trash Free Seas Alliance, which is a huge step forward in the cruising industry. Finally, Norwegian Cruise Line’s campaign, Hope Starts Here, aims to rebuild schools and structures damaged by hurricanes in the Caribbean islands. In addition, Norwegian Cruise Line have funded the opening of a nature trail with Alaska Raptor Center, a dedicated avian hospital that rehabilitates injured birds of prey in Sitka, Alaska.
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    Overall, it’s clear that a number of popular cruise lines are investing in the environment in one way or another, and as science develops, this will surely only improve. If this information has struck a chord with you, find out more about how you can do your bit for the world and the communities in it, with our five holidays that make a difference.


    Explore the Galapagos Islands on a Cruise

    2nd August 2018

    As the eyes of the world increasingly turn to environmental concerns, awareness of the astounding range of flora and fauna species grows too. There are a number of regions where the miracle of life on earth is abundant; the safari land in Africa, the river banks of the Amazon, and of course, the incredible Galapagos Islands. This archipelago of Ecuadorean islands is becoming one of the most sought-after destinations in the world, and what better way to explore them than on a cruise.

     

     

    Which Cruise Lines Operate in the Galapagos Islands?

     

    More and more cruise lines are offering itineraries in this part of the world, often combining a visit to the Galapagos with other destinations in South and Central America. Here are a handful of our favourite options;

    Silversea Cruises, Silver Galapagos – This purpose built ship manages the terrain here perfectly. With a capacity of just 100 guests, cruisers will have an intimate experience and will profit from the first-hand expertise of the onboard staff.

    Celebrity Cruises, Celebrity Flora – Another ship designed for exploring the Galapagos Islands, onboard Celebrity Flora guests will relish in the onboard ambience which perfectly echoes and celebrates the surroundings.

    G-Adventures, Yolita – Accommodating just 16 guests – yes 16 – Yolita provides an incredibly personalised experience. Explore the beautiful islands while befriending like-minded people and learning more about the complex eco-system from the experts.

     

     

    Why are the Galapagos Islands so Important?

     

    Located more than 600 miles off the coast of Ecuador, the 21 islands that comprise the Galapagos are home to far more species than you might realise. The famous biologist Charles Darwin visited in 1835, and it is said that the discoveries he made here went on to inspire his theory of evolution. This is because many of the species found here cannot be found anywhere else, meaning they have developed in accordance with what the region can supply - which is indicative of the process of natural selection.

     

    What species are unique to the Galapagos Islands?

     

     

    Among the huge array of animals and plant life here include some very special creatures which do not live anywhere else on earth;

     

  • The Galapagos penguins
  • The Galapagos tortoise
  • Red and Blue-footed booby birds
  • Land and marine iguanas
  • Darwin’s finches
  • Flightless cormorant
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    There is also plenty to see in the way of marine life, such as sea turtles and sea lions, so guests should take advantage of any scuba or snorkelling opportunities during a cruise.

    Take a look at our range of Galapagos Island cruises, and finally tick this stunning place off your bucket list.


    Celebrity Cruises to Transform Entire Fleet

    23rd July 2018

    Updated July 2019

    Following the success of Celebrity Edge’s innovative design, Celebrity Cruises aims to reinvent the way passengers experience cruising. With the help of renowned designers, architects and engineers, Celebrity Cruises will revolutionise the entire fleet from the inside out to introduce redesigned accommodation, dining and venues for a truly unrivalled cruise experience.

     

    Timeline

     

    The fleet-wide redesign began in January 2019, with work continuing until 2023. For a full list of ships and when they’ll be officially part of the Celebrity Revolution, see the table below.

     

    Ship Date
    Celebrity Millennium 02/09/2019
    Celebrity Summit 03/23/2019
    Celebrity Equinox 01/06/2019
    Celebrity Silhouette 01/31/2020
    Celebrity Constellation 05/24/2020
    Celebrity Infinity 11/15/2020
    Celebrity Eclipse 11/24/2020
    Celebrity Solstice 10/29/2021
    Celebrity Reflection 02/03/2023

     

    Celebrity Revolution Timeline

     

     

     

    Accommodation & The Retreat

     

     

    Expert designer Kelly Hoppen MBE’s work from Celebrity Edge will continue fleetwide, where her stamp of excellence will be left in all Suite Class staterooms. From the cashmere mattresses to the airy, spacious ambience, guests will find a home away from home with an extra touch of luxury.

    Suite Class guests can also enjoy exclusive new venues. The Retreat Sundeck and The Retreat Lounge aim to emulate the atmosphere of a top-class resort, with plenty of opportunity to sit back, enjoy a cocktail and take in the serenity of a lounge that’s been made exclusively for you. As the day moves into the evening, Suite Class guests can then sit down at the private restaurant, Luminae, where they enjoy a unique menu created by a Michelin-starred chef that can’t be found anywhere else.

    The accommodation redesign is not limited to just Suite Class cabins either. All staterooms of all classes will be redesigned and refreshed from top to bottom, featuring a neutral colour palette and clean lines to recreate that luxuriously homely feel.

     

    Bars & Restaurants

     

     

    To enhance the culinary experience Celebrity Cruises are famous for, main restaurants receive a glamorous make-over with many elegant new touches. The Oceanview Café in particular will emulate a spacious marketplace and introduce more international options that are inspired by each destination.

    Excitingly, Le Petit Chef, a hugely popular virtual dining experience, will be coming to all Celebrity ships at the onboard restaurant, Qsine. Marvel at the animated chef who prepares your chosen dish before your very eyes, before it’s presented to you in delicious reality.

     

    Onboard Venues

     

    Social spaces across the fleet will have a new and improved look, from the bars to the spas to the boutique shopping. With more than 40 crafts beers on offer, the expanded Gastrobar makes a great place to find a new favourite. Thanks to Revolution, whether you’re in the mood to catch up with new friends, or simply looking for a place to get stuck into your favourite book, you’ll find redesigned areas perfect for you.

    As well as this, in collaboration with Canyon Ranch, spas and fitness centres will be expended upon to offer a range of new and improved features. In addition, more AquaClass staterooms will be inspired by that serene spa aesthetic and situated just a few feet from the spa and fitness centres. From fabulous new treatments and massages, to fun fitness classes, Celebrity Cruises have created the ultimate cruise fleet with your wellbeing in mind.

    Finally, for those who love to treat loved ones (and themselves!), you’ll be delighted to know the boutique shopping has expanded to welcome new, high-end brands with plenty of designer names, as well as a digital photo gallery where you can browse all your favourite holiday snaps.

     

    Envrionmental Responsibility

     

    Celebrity Cruises have also worked hard to reduce their environmental impact, by looking even at the smallest of details on their ships. With the aim of increasing fuel efficiency and reducing emissions fleetwide, this cruise line will not only allow cruisers to experience the world in a new way, but also protect it at the same time.

     

    See our range of upcoming Celebrity Cruises holidays for you and yours to experience a piece of the luxury!


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