Royal Caribbean International’s ultimate megaship Allure of the Seas is coming to the Mediterranean. But what does the announcement mean for the UK industry? We break it down below…
1. The biggest ship in the world is coming to the Med
With a capacity of 6,318 guests, 2,384 crew – all across 16 passenger decks – Allure of the Seas is the biggest ship in the world. It’s so big that if you stood it bow-to-stern it would be twice the height of London’s Gherkin building. Since its construction the megaship has sailed in the Caribbean but is now going to be much closer to home, which is great news for your customers that don’t want to have to fly across the Atlantic.
2. It will be sailing seven-day itineraries
Allure of the Seas will be conducting seven-day sailings between Barcelona and Citavecchia (Rome and Naples) with calls at Palma de Mallorca, Marseilles (Provence), Le Spezia (Florence and Pisa).
3. But only in the summer…
Unsurprisingly the ship will only be in the Mediterranean from May through to October. However, what’s interesting to note is that when a third Oasis-class megaship is launched in summer 2016 – will all three ships be sailing in the Caribbean for the winter…? That would be a huge amount of capacity (over 18,000 passengers) but where else could handle a ship this size for the European winter? One to definitely keep an eye on.
4. Tickets go on sale 18 February
Managing director Stuart Leven has said that information packs are being sent out to the UK trade, as well as trainers to ensure that this is given as big a push as possible. The company will be directly marketing against a typical land-based holidaymaker. Crown & Anchor members will be be able to get their tickets from 12 February. Prices for Allure of the Sea’s sailings are yet to be announced…
5. Royal Caribbean is backing the UK market
When Royal Caribbean International said it was backing the UK market – a few people were dubious. For one: every cruise line says the same thing. However, the news that Anthem of the Seas (to be launched in 2015) would be homeporting in Southampton followed by this news about Allure is evidence of Royal putting its money where its mouth is.