Cruise News January 7, 2018

With the recent holidays, the cruise lines have been rather quiet with announcements over the past few weeks. That is why we have been on hiatus. Now, we are back and ready to deliver the

Cruise News January 7, 2018

With the recent holidays, the cruise lines have been rather quiet with announcements over the past few weeks. That is why we have been on hiatus. Now, we are back and ready to deliver the latest updates from the past few weeks. Here is our first recap of the year with Cruise News January 7, 2018.

Cruise News January 7, 2018

Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises Increase Gratuities

Over the holidays, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines announced two of their brands would be increasing the daily gratuities. Both lines increased their daily charges by $1, per person, per day. Now, cruisers on Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises will be charged $14.50 a day for gratuities for most rooms. Suites will now incur a $17.50 service charge on Royal Caribbean and a $18 charge on Celebrity Cruises. This puts both brands on the higher end of the scale, with most of their competitors charging less than $14 a day for gratuities.

Cruise News January 7, 2017Gratuities Have Gone up on All Royal Caribbean International Ships

No Dreamworks on Symphony of the Seas

While there has not been an official press release yet, our friends over at the Royal Caribbean Blog spotted a recent conversation on Twitter. In a series of tweets, the cruise line confirmed that there would be no Dreamworks characters on Symphony of the Seas. This means no photo meet and greets, as well as no shows or events featuring the characters from movies like Shrek or Madagascar. As you would expect, social media was a buzz with positive and negative reactions to this change. Although, the three other Oasis-class ships will continue to have Dreamworks entertainment and characters for the time being.

Winners of 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards

Thanks to everyone who voted in the most recent Readers’ Choice Awards put on by USA Today 10Best. The winners were announced at the end of the year across several categories. Some of the big winners included Carnival Cruise Line for Best Ocean Cruise Line. Viking River Cruises took the honor for Best River Cruise Line, and other notable ships like Allure of the Seas and Royal Princess got nods in categories including Best Entertainment and Best Dining respectively. You can check out all the winners at 10Best. Let us know if you agree with the selections in the Comments below.

Cruises to BermudaCongrats to Carnival Cruise Line on the Many Awards

Changes Coming to Costa Maya Port

With increased cruise traffic in the Western Caribbean, Costa Maya, Mexico has seen an influx of cruise traffic. Port officials are acting on this popularity with some big plans to update the port in 2018 and 2019. This up and comping cruise port is increasing its berth to allow for the world’s largest cruise ships to dock later this year with Harmony of the Seas planning to visit this summer. More changes are in store for the port including adding new attractions and tours to accommodate the additional guests. Among the additions are a monster truck attraction at the adventure park, a new speed boat tour, and an update to the Uvero Beach Club. Next year, the port is expected to add a brand new river boat tour taking visitors through the jungle. Looking for things to do ashore? Check out our top picks for the Best Things to Do in Costa Maya, Mexico on a Cruise.

Norwegian Getaway Western Caribbean Cruise ReviewEntrance to Costa Maya, Mexico Cruise Port

Top New Cruise Ships of 2018

Are you making plans for a vacation this year? We have our picks for the top 8 new cruise ships of 2018. This year’s class of new ships is impressive. Chief among the new vessels is the massive and record breaking Symphony of the Seas setting sail this spring. There are also new mega-ships from Norwegian Cruise Line and Carnival Cruise Line launching at the same time. Add Celebrity Edge, the line’s newest ship in years, to the waterways, and 2018 is sure to deliver some of the most innovative and ground-breaking ships to ever set sail.


Do you have any other updates you would like to share for this edition of Cruise News January 7, 2018? Drop us an anchor below to share any other cruise announcements that we may have missed.


Don Bucolo, or “DB”, loves everything about cruising- the ocean, the food, and the atmosphere. While he may be obsessed with doing extensive amounts of research on ships and all elements of a cruise, Don enjoys sharing his new found knowledge with fellow cruisers. When he is not sailing the high seas, he does whatever his wife tells him to do-it only took 10 years to realize this.
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3 comments on Cruise News January 7, 2018

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  1. I have two cruises with Royal Caribbean out of Tampa that were going to Key West on day 2. Both the on in February and the on in October are now going to Grand Cayman instead. What’s up?

    Hi Robert, thanks for the question. As far as we know, Key West is accepting ships. Have you contacted RCI to see why they have changed the itinerary? Let us know if you do. Happy Sailing.

      Called RCI and I was told that their ships were not going to Key West until January 2019