Help! If you've cruised the Monarch and the Sovereign...

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Chicago, IL
53 Posts
Joined Feb 2004
How do the ships compare? We sailed in February on the Monarch and will be sailing in August on the Sovereign.

First cruise - 2/23/04 - Best time of my life!
East Central Florida
1,719 Posts
Joined Oct 2002
When in August are you booked?
We'll be on the Sov for the Aug 23 sailing. Haven't been on the Monarch, so I can't help with your original question.
Sovereign is, of course, the Monarch's older sister, and while Monarch has recently gone through a refurbishment, Sovereign has not. So that may give you some idea.

  'til Sovereign of the Seas

Sovereign 01/02, 11/02, 6/03, 08/03, 09/03
Fantasy 06/2002
Mariner 12/03
Radiance 04/04
Minneapolis, MN
321 Posts
Joined Nov 2001
It has been a few years so I can't comment on the condition that it is in now but the ship was bascially identical. I believe the Monarch is bigger but not certain.

Sovereign 3/30/98
Monarch 4/9/2000
Grandeur 1/11/2002
Splendour 2/19/2004

Panama Canal

Murfreesboro, Tenn.
15 Posts
Joined Nov 2001
I sailed on Sovereign in June 2001, and then on Monarch in December 2001. At that time, the two ships were nearly identical. I knew they were sister ships, but I had no idea how similar they really were. Seriously, from having been on Sovereign just a few months before, I knew where everything was. It was laid out the same.

However, I know that Monarch has recently undergone renovations, so I don't know how similar the two ships are now. Somewhere on these boards, there are pictures of the refurbished Monarch. I looked at them and couldn't believe it was the same ship. I do remember that the dining room was very different.

I wish I could remember where I saw those pictures. If I find them again, I'll post the link on this board.

Hope this helps!

Melfa, Va., USA
239 Posts
Joined Mar 2004
I have been on both ships twice and at the time, they were basically identical. But since the refurb, I imagine that the Monarch is in better repair. The ships are the same size and the layout was the same. I do love that class of ship but it is smaller and very user-friendly. Contrary to a recent poster's experience, I have found the staff of the Sovereign to be very friendly and helpful. The SOS is going in for a refurb in November, unfornately after your cruise.

We did have a wonderful time on her over Easter.

Monarch 6/02, 4/03
Enchantment 7/03
Sovereign 12/03, 4/04
Voyager to Canada 7/04
Navigator 12/04
Myrtle Beach SC
1,500 Posts
Joined Apr 2003
We sailed both and like previously stated are near the same. We find the staff on Sovereigns to be better. We keep going back over and over.

"Baby lets cruise away from here"
Glen Rock, PA
991 Posts
Joined Nov 2000
We sailed on Sovereign in 2001 and Monarch in 2004. Liked both. Food and service was much better on Sovereign. Monarch has been given a major re-do and looks pretty good. Entertainment was better on Sovereign. Overall, more similar than not. With Monarch we had great weather and visited all the scheduled ports. On the Sovereign we couldn't go to Coco Cay so that was a big disappointment. Both have equally small cabins!
Chris Mitchell

16 Voyages completed 1999-2004, 81 wonderful days at sea
dreaming of ....
Norwegian Crown 8/04
Carnival Fascination 11/04
New Jersey
499 Posts
Joined Sep 2000
I sailed on Monarch back in 1996 (obviously before the refurbishment) and on Sovereign earlier this year. The only edge I'd give to Monarch is that she has balcony cabins available; otherwise, they were too close to call.

I must go down to the sea again. . . .

Countdown to Voyager!

Virginia, USA
2,981 Posts
Joined May 2000
We sailed Sovereign back in 1996. It was our first cruise and our 10th anniversary. So Sovereign holds a special place in our hearts and always will. Have not been on Monarch.

While we loved our cruise we found the ship to be quite crowded in the public areas. Other than that no problems. We have, however, based on the number of people per ship, switched over to Celebrity for our last six cruises.
South Carolina, USA
178 Posts
Joined Oct 2002
I have not sailed the Monarch, but have sailed the Sovereign this past January. This time next week, I'll be enroute to Port Canaveral to board her once again.

She is in great shape to be 16 years old and a solid workhorse for RCI. The food was great, the service was flawless, and I had a great time.

There has been some mention of a refurb being in the works in the fall, but I have seen nothing official from RCI. If this is true, it will make a great ship even better.

I wouldn't hesitate to sail her at any time!

Facation Fanatic

Fantasy - 6/02 Bahamas
Fantasy - 12/02 Bahamas
Victory - 9/03 NE/Canada
Sovereign of the Seas - 1/04 Bahamas

Sovereign of the Seas

Carnival Glory to the Eastern Caribbean

5,961 Posts
Joined Apr 2003
It will be like Deja Vu` all over again.


"Nothing so needs reforming as other people's habits" Mark Twain

"Nothing so needs reforming as other people's formal night attire, poolside attire, child rearing practices, walk-talkie usage, chair hogging, seat saving, line cutting ..." Mark_K
Bethlehem, Pa
844 Posts
Joined Jan 2001
I've sailed the Sovereign once and the Monarch twice, before the refurbishment and just returned from the 4/19 sailing. RC did a really nice job on the refurb.

I personally think the Monarch wins the beauty contest but I like the ports better that the Sovereign visits.

Depends on what's your priority!