Jump to content
TheCruisingQueen

Radiance, Rhapsody, or Voyager of the seas?

Recommended Posts

I am planning to book a cruise for December 2013, and I have chosen to do the South Pacific from Sydney, Australia. My question is, which ship do I chose? All 3 ships, Radiance, Rhapsody, and Voyager leave from Sydney to the South Pacific (New Caledonia, Fiji, Vanuatu, etc) and are roughly the same price, and all three dates are roughly the same as well. I am stuck on choosing which ship, Radiance and Rhapsody have recently been thoroughly refurbished, and Voyager has yet to be, and won't be until 2014. The differences are that the Radiance and Rhapsody don't have the Royal Promenade, and etc that are on newer ships in the fleet, Voyager does have those things; although I was on the Allure of the seas in September 2011 so I know what that is like already. There are many other differences between the three ships, but I know I will do one of them for sure, as I love Royal Caribbean! I want any opinion, what do you think?

 

TheCruisingQueen :D

 

Past Cruises:

NCL Jewel Nov/2009

NCL Epic Mar/2011

RCCL Allure of the seas Sept/2011

Celebrity Equinox Mar/2012

 

Cruises Coming Up:

Carnival Glory Aug/2012

Disney Fantasy Feb/2013

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Truthfully...I never thought I would say this but I would prefer choosing a

larger ship...(with Promenade and more options)

 

Although our cruise on Rhapsody was great...I found that the activities were

limited.

True, cabins are refurbished and ship had new options big screen over pool, new restaurants, flat screens by elevators (for directions and Ship Compass)...

 

Downside...every other activity centered in Centrum (center rotunda of ship) which was small to accomodate abundance of guests, Windjammer Cafe much smaller than larger ships and smaller selection of food, new dining areas were many times empty of guests, new Starbucks empty as well, pool area small...single pool...if weather is bad you must all move into Solarium (many adult guests were disturbed by the screams of children in an adult only area) Smaller ship lacked the outside game areas the larger ships have.

Must admit that Rhapsody was comfortable and never felt crowded but having been on sister ship Explorer of the Seas enjoyed it better.

 

Plus: if you are a Diamond member....Rhapsody has its own Diamond Lounge w/continental breakfast w/speciality coffees, and coctails w/assortment of

hot and cold snacks from 5-8:30 pm an extensive menu of free coctails and drinks are available. Also it is open 24/7 just to chill out...conceirge is available as well.

Explorer has a really nice lounge as well called the 19th Hole but lacked the amenities that Rhapsody has (although this might have changed since we sailed 6/2011)

 

***All Jr Suite guests and above can use this lounge. You don't have to be a

RCCL Diamond, Diamond Plus, or Pinnacle to enter.

 

PS None of these ships are even close in size to Oasis or Allure.

 

Hope this helps!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not a big fan of the Royal Promenade - I can visit a shopping mall with bars back home ;) Voyager does have some extra attractions, such as the ice-skating rink, but it all depends on what sort of things you want to do on the ship.

 

I've sailed on Voyager (twice) and on other Vision class ships but only sailed once on a Radiance class ship (Jewel) and think this is the best class we've sailed on. I love the open-air seating at the back of the Windjammer, looking over the wake. They also have a lovely airy feel to them, with lots of windows. Radiance has also had a very complete refurbishment, with many great additions.

 

If the Royal Promenade isn't important to you I would give the Radiance a try.

Edited by Bobal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Plus: if you are a Diamond member....Rhapsody has its own Diamond Lounge w/continental breakfast w/speciality coffees, and coctails w/assortment of

hot and cold snacks from 5-8:30 pm an extensive menu of free coctails and drinks are available. Also it is open 24/7 just to chill out...conceirge is available as well.

Explorer has a really nice lounge as well called the 19th Hole but lacked the amenities that Rhapsody has (although this might have changed since we sailed 6/2011)

 

***All Jr Suite guests and above can use this lounge. You don't have to be a

RCCL Diamond, Diamond Plus, or Pinnacle to enter.

 

 

Just a little correction, JS guests can't use the Diamond Lounge, unless they are Diamond or above.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All those were WELCOMED in lounge on Rhapsody

in fact PINNACLES said it was to CROWDED in their lounge

and CHOSE our lounge instead...

I spoke to Hostess All were WELCOMED and NOT turned away!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
All those were WELCOMED in lounge on Rhapsody

in fact PINNACLES said it was to CROWDED in their lounge

and CHOSE our lounge instead...

I spoke to Hostess All were WELCOMED and NOT turned away!

 

That's interesting - so you're saying that those staying in Junior Suites, who were not Diamond members or above were allowed into the Diamond Lounge. :confused:

 

I'm aware that those who are in full Suites (or D+/Pinnacle) can also use the Diamond Lounge, but the point I made was that this privilege is not available for those in Junior Suites who are not at least Diamond level.

Edited by Bobal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been on all 3 class is ships incl both Radiance and Rhapsody and I am booked on Voyager to Fiji and Nz. I have been to most of the islands offered on these ships so im choosing Voyager for the type of ship however because she is so big she is missing some of the most amazing south pacific islands. If I was travelling from overseas I would pick Radiance then Rhapsody. Which itinerary did you have in mind? Champagne Bay, Wala, Lifou and Isle of Pines are just gorgeous.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello. We are doing a New Zealand cruise in November and had a choice between Radiance and Voyager. We were very close to going on Radiance as we had cruised on her back in 2007 in Alaska and loved every minute of it. Radiance is a beautiful ship as is Rhapsody from what i have seen on video clips since it was refurbished. In the end we went for Voyager as we want to see another class of ship and although Voyager may be starting to look a little bit in need of a pick me up on parts of the ship the reviews of food,shows etc on Voyager that i have read have been very good. We also felt that as the cruise is 14 nights Voyager may have a few more things to do on it. Whichever way you go, i am sure you wont be disappointed,Royal Carribean have great ships.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have sailed on Radiance and Rhapsody, and while we have not sailed on Voyager, we have sailed on similar ships (Adventure and Navigator).

 

Our last sailing was on Rhapsody last November from Sydney to the South Pacific. We had two sea days each way and four port days in between. If we had a choice between the three ships for this sailing we would have selected the Voyager, even though the other two have been refurbished (and at the time we sailed on Rhapsody she had not been refurbished). We found that there was so much more to do on the Voyager class ships, particular on sea days. We felt that the activities were limited on Rhapsody which would have been okay for one or two sea days but way too quiet for us for four sea days. And the overall space just felt smaller. They held the 70s party in the centrum area and it was packed - no room to move around, let alone dance. We prefer the open feel of the promenade.

 

Also, the passage on the way back to Sydney was quite rough on the smaller ship.

 

Are all the itineraries exactly the same? If not, I would select the sailing that had more of the ports I wanted to see. Keep in mind that a couple weeks before we sailed we found out that they canceled our stop to the Loyalty Islands and replaced it with Port Vila.

 

If you are choosing just based on ship I would rank them in this order - Voyager, Radiance and Rhapsody.

 

Good luck with your decision.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey CruisingQueen,

 

I cruised the South Pacific on the Legend of the Seas (same class as the Rhapsody) and absolutely loved the smaller ship. It could get into places that I'm sure the bigger ones can't get into. That said, the Radiance Class is my all time favorite. There is so much glass, that the scenery of the islands will be spectacular.

 

Whichever ship you decide on, it will be a wonderful cruise, and the trip of a lifetime!!

 

Trish

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Truthfully...I never thought I would say this but I would prefer choosing a

larger ship...(with Promenade and more options)

 

Although our cruise on Rhapsody was great...I found that the activities were

limited.

True, cabins are refurbished and ship had new options big screen over pool, new restaurants, flat screens by elevators (for directions and Ship Compass)...

 

Downside...every other activity centered in Centrum (center rotunda of ship) which was small to accomodate abundance of guests, Windjammer Cafe much smaller than larger ships and smaller selection of food, new dining areas were many times empty of guests, new Starbucks empty as well, pool area small...single pool...if weather is bad you must all move into Solarium (many adult guests were disturbed by the screams of children in an adult only area) Smaller ship lacked the outside game areas the larger ships have.

Must admit that Rhapsody was comfortable and never felt crowded but having been on sister ship Explorer of the Seas enjoyed it better.

 

Plus: if you are a Diamond member....Rhapsody has its own Diamond Lounge w/continental breakfast w/speciality coffees, and coctails w/assortment of

hot and cold snacks from 5-8:30 pm an extensive menu of free coctails and drinks are available. Also it is open 24/7 just to chill out...conceirge is available as well.

Explorer has a really nice lounge as well called the 19th Hole but lacked the amenities that Rhapsody has (although this might have changed since we sailed 6/2011)

 

***All Jr Suite guests and above can use this lounge. You don't have to be a

RCCL Diamond, Diamond Plus, or Pinnacle to enter.

 

PS None of these ships are even close in size to Oasis or Allure.

 

Hope this helps!

 

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have been on all 3 class is ships incl both Radiance and Rhapsody and I am booked on Voyager to Fiji and Nz. I have been to most of the islands offered on these ships so im choosing Voyager for the type of ship however because she is so big she is missing some of the most amazing south pacific islands. If I was travelling from overseas I would pick Radiance then Rhapsody. Which itinerary did you have in mind? Champagne Bay, Wala, Lifou and Isle of Pines are just gorgeous.

 

The Radiance does three ports within new caledonia i believe, The Rhapsody does new caledonia and vuanatu with three ports, and the Voyager only does two ports between new caledonia and fiji. I think i am leaning to either the Radiance or Voyager after reading most replies. I enjoy larger ships better than smaller ones.

 

PS I see you are going on the Celebrity Solstice! That was one of the options, but since i am spending a week in australia after the cruise, I decided not to go on the Solstice since it only did Australia & New Zealand. I was on the Celebrity Equinox, a exact replica sister ship of the Solstice, and had a wonderful time, you won't regret going on that ship! Celebrity is a wonderful cruise line, good food, great service, beautiful ships, and nice ports. I would love to go on one of Celebrity's ships again!

 

TheCruisingQueen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We have sailed on Radiance and Rhapsody, and while we have not sailed on Voyager, we have sailed on similar ships (Adventure and Navigator).

 

Our last sailing was on Rhapsody last November from Sydney to the South Pacific. We had two sea days each way and four port days in between. If we had a choice between the three ships for this sailing we would have selected the Voyager, even though the other two have been refurbished (and at the time we sailed on Rhapsody she had not been refurbished). We found that there was so much more to do on the Voyager class ships, particular on sea days. We felt that the activities were limited on Rhapsody which would have been okay for one or two sea days but way too quiet for us for four sea days. And the overall space just felt smaller. They held the 70s party in the centrum area and it was packed - no room to move around, let alone dance. We prefer the open feel of the promenade.

 

 

Also, the passage on the way back to Sydney was quite rough on the smaller ship.

 

Are all the itineraries exactly the same? If not, I would select the sailing that had more of the ports I wanted to see. Keep in mind that a couple weeks before we sailed we found out that they canceled our stop to the Loyalty Islands and replaced it with Port Vila.

 

If you are choosing just based on ship I would rank them in this order - Voyager, Radiance and Rhapsody.

 

Good luck with your decision.

 

thanks! I think I will choose either the Radiance or Voyager

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hello. We are doing a New Zealand cruise in November and had a choice between Radiance and Voyager. We were very close to going on Radiance as we had cruised on her back in 2007 in Alaska and loved every minute of it. Radiance is a beautiful ship as is Rhapsody from what i have seen on video clips since it was refurbished. In the end we went for Voyager as we want to see another class of ship and although Voyager may be starting to look a little bit in need of a pick me up on parts of the ship the reviews of food,shows etc on Voyager that i have read have been very good. We also felt that as the cruise is 14 nights Voyager may have a few more things to do on it. Whichever way you go, i am sure you wont be disappointed,Royal Carribean have great ships.

 

Yes, Royal Caribbean does have great ships! Wasn't disappointed with the Allure of the seas at all!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If more sea days, I'd take Voyager. If fewer, I'd go for Radiance. Rhapsody is just too small for me after years of Voyager class and Freedom class ships.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have never done the South Pacific but I would definitely go with the Radiance. DW and I were on the Jewel in Jan and this class of ship is now officially my favorite. I was married on the Voyager and she holds a special place in my heart, but for the views I am sure you will have on your itinerary, I think you will do no better that the Radiance.

 

Have fun!!

 

ps post some good pictures :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
thanks! I think I will choose either the Radiance or Voyager

 

Fiji would be a big draw for us and so that would sway us towards Voyager.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have never done the South Pacific but I would definitely go with the Radiance. DW and I were on the Jewel in Jan and this class of ship is now officially my favorite. I was married on the Voyager and she holds a special place in my heart, but for the views I am sure you will have on your itinerary, I think you will do no better that the Radiance.

 

Have fun!!

 

ps post some good pictures :)

 

I will do a review and post pictures when I do get back! But the cruise won't be until Dec 2013! :( I think I am leaning more towards the Radiance, I like how she is not too small and not too big, and I would love to see all that glass and ride up the elevator while watching the sea! It seems like a nice ship, I'm glad its been refurbished, she isn't too old, only about 12 years now I believe.

 

PS I saw the Jewel while I was on the Celebrity Equinox this past March and it really made me want to try out one of the Radiance class of ships!

 

TheCruisingQueen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fiji would be a big draw for us and so that would sway us towards Voyager.

 

I agree, that is why it is so hard to choose between the Radiance or the Voyager. I would love to see Fiji, but I heard that New Caledonia is as nice as Fiji. Voyager seems like such a nice ship, and so does Radiance, I have pretty much took out Rhapsody, as it is such a small and old ship.

 

TheCruisingQueen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think that you will go wrong with any class that you have mentioned.

 

We love both the Radiance Class, and the Vision Class.

 

We are cruising on a TA on the Vision of the Seas to Copenhagen next April, and then

 

The Radiance of the Seas to New Zealand in 2014, with a TP following!

 

Rick

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We cruised on radiance through the south pacific in January this year and it was fantastic. We are booked on radiance again next January going to Fiji this time. You can't go wrong on radiance lots to do and the islands you visit are amazing.

 

The Christie's

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pick Rhapsody we like it so much better then the Radiance,Rhapsody is nicer in windjamer also there dinning room is nicer,what ever you choose you will have a great time, we are going our selves on 25th Sept 2012 Honolulu to Sydney

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
***All Jr Suite guests and above can use this lounge. You don't have to be a

RCCL Diamond, Diamond Plus, or Pinnacle to enter.

 

 

Hope this helps!

 

 

Unfortunately last time we cruised on the Rhapsody was just before its refurb. Whilst I'm not sure which ship you are reffering to about JS guests being able to use the Diamond Lounge, I think this must have been a one-off. To enter the Diamond Lounge you have to use your 'key card' which has a code to open the door and it is for Diamond, Diamond Plus and Pinnacle members only. We did go into the Diamond Lounge a couple of times on the Radiance but spent most of our time in the Concierge Lounge which we preferred - less people as it's only available for people in grand suites (and above) or diamond plus and pinnacle members and JD (CL) is very strict about that.

 

We are back on the Radiance B2B NZ and South Pacific in November and December - just love the Radiance.:)

Edited by Dizziedi
Left out category of suites

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes.. All guests need a card to get in...but as the lounge got

crowded the back door is always open and the extra overflow goes into

the Lets Dance lounge in rear of ship.

We had the opposite experience the Concierge Lounge was overcrowded

with kids we heard... and adults found the Diamond Lounge to be quieter

and more fun....

Again....I never saw anyone turned away... although our Diamond Hostess

knew almost everyone during our cruise... and did check her computer for

guest names.

SHE WAS AMAZING!

 

Can't speak for Radiance...finding each ship is DIFFERENT!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We've been on Radiance twice. Never been on Voyager, but have been on Navigator and Adventure (Voyager class) Never been on Rhapsody.

 

We love Radiance. The ship is beautiful, and oriented to the water. Elevators look out to the sea. Solarium pool is magnificent (but the others are as well). We felt it had enough activities to keep us interested, but wasn't so big as to be overwhelming. You really feel like you're on a ship.

 

We liked the others too, but after 12 cruises, including small ships (Windstar), Celebrity, Carnival, Norweigan, we liked Radiance the best.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My partner and I went on our first cruise to NZ last year on Radiance and we absolutely loved the ship! She is a beautiful ship and we were lucky to have great weather as well. We had a balcony cabin and the ship was so light and airy with so much glass.

 

We also bought a package for the specialty restaurants which in my opinion was great value.

 

My brother and his family also went on Radiance to the South Pacific on a 9 day cruise last December and they also thoroughly enjoyed it as well.

 

I really don't have any complaints - our aft cabin on the port side was nice (and quiet!), the food was good although we tended to avoid the Windjammer, the food was a little ordinary at times. Most of the time I had breakfast in the Park Cafe which was a lot less crowded. The Margarita Happy Hour at Rita's was really good & the Margaritas are HUGE!

 

My partner is someone who would get bored easily but he didn't on the ship, much to my surprise. He always had plenty to do or watch on the ship and would go for a wander often. The movie selection in your cabin was limited but who really cares! We are both looking forward to when we book our next cruise - we are planning to take another cruise on Radiance on the Sydney-Hawaii leg, would be great if we could do a B2B cruise and do the Hawaii-Vancouver leg as well but wish we had an endless pot of money to spend on holidays.

 

If you want any more info about Radiance, please let me know. I haven't cruised on the Voyager or Vision class ships but we might try them sometime in the future.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A bit old now so the original question has probably been decided, but as there was a necropost, I'd add that Voyager was the clear stand-out for me from the three. Just so much more to do, a better vibe and I felt a better layout. I didn't find Radiance so appealing after the refurb but the Voyager just has a whole lot more.

 

Not that Radiance is bad, but Voyager was much better for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Haven't been back on the Rhapsody since the Rugby World Cup not long before its refurb but we are about to book another cruise on her - a great ship. We weren't overly impressed with the Voyager. Concierge Lounge was awful, Diamond Lounge was makeshift but at least it had a view, long queues to get into the dining room at lunchtime, food average but not bad, too many people for our liking and not enough choices of restaurants which we know will change after its refurb. Great CD, ice show was fabulous and we loved the Promenade but overall, give me the Radiance any day - great refurb, great Concierge and Diamond Lounge, fabulous specialty restaurants - too many great days and nights on the Radiance to not rate it our number one ship.

 

Cheers

Di

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's all down to personal choice. We've sailed on all 3 classes of ship and all offer something different.

 

Radiance class ships are one of our favourite, lots of glass and outside connection with the sea. They also have more going on than Vision class - some people want the quieter type of cruise? We personally would lean more towards Radiance or Voyager.

 

As stated, Voyager has the Royal Promenade and all the parades etc. as well as the ice shows. If you are travelling with children, they usually prefer the larger ships as there are more activities and entertainment specifically for them.

 

We cruised Solstice last Christmas, Australia and NZ, and enjoyed our cruise. We felt no movement on this ship across the Tasman, something we did feel quite a lot of on Splendour (vision class) and that was only in the Med ;). Saying that, we're going from one extreme to another this year, a week on Oasis followed by 5 nights on EOS :eek:.

Edited by villauk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My husband and I have sailed the Radiance class several times, and for us, all of them have been a wonderful experience. We visited Alaska and Hawaii both on board Radiance of the Seas, and there was nothing not to love about it. We find the Voyager class is way too large, too crowded, too loud. And yes, Rhapsody perhaps, too small. Radiance is, in our opinion, the best option.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
A bit old now so the original question has probably been decided, but as there was a necropost, I'd add that Voyager was the clear stand-out for me from the three. Just so much more to do, a better vibe and I felt a better layout. I didn't find Radiance so appealing after the refurb but the Voyager just has a whole lot more.

 

Not that Radiance is bad, but Voyager was much better for me.

 

I would say the exact opposite for me, wouldn't do Voyager again, and really didn't like the layout at all. Felt like a shopping mall. Love Rhapsody and Radiance, and would pick either over Voyager. It's great RCL have so many beautiful ships they have something for everyone.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agreed Cruisincat.

We have just booked the Radiance for the Pacific Islands in December, great itinerary and from all account a beautiful Ship with great Ocean views from all over the Ship.

We have been on the Voyager a couple of months ago and we enjoyed it but I am not really fussed on a Promenade, I like to see the ocean and prefer a Ship that looks outward rather than inward.

I can visit a Mall if I want what the Promenade offers.

There are few Bars or areas on the Voyager that look outward to the Ocean in any meaningful way other than the Pool Bars.

Edited by Mikey22

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I would say the exact opposite for me, wouldn't do Voyager again, and really didn't like the layout at all. Felt like a shopping mall. Love Rhapsody and Radiance, and would pick either over Voyager. It's great RCL have so many beautiful ships they have something for everyone.

 

Exactly! We sailed Adventure and it felt like a shopping mall! Now we're sailing the Freedom class soon. We hope it's a better experience. I think Radiance will always be our favorite...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Explore the Night. Sweepstakes - Enter now for a chance to win win a free cruise for two with Azamara Club Cruises!
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Community Contests
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×