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Why such a big difference in price?


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On 7/19/2019 at 1:23 PM, PMGS247 said:

This pretty much sums it up.  Higher quality products cost more.  If sailing on RCI you should expect a higher quality experience across all the different elements of a cruise.  Better food, better entertainment, better on-board activities, etc. etc.  Is it actually better and/or worth the additional cost?  Impossible to say with 100% confidence, subjectivity is very real and the experience of a cruise covers such a wide spectrum of services & amenities, but it's probably safe to say demand hasn't pushed the price up to where it is entirely by accident.

We love Princess, but the entertainment on Oasis class RCI ships have got us alternating cruise lines. We just need a fix every other year. 

The prices are pretty similar. 

I don't know anything about Carnival’s entertainment, but I can’t believe it would be able to compete with Harmony’s.  

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On 7/18/2019 at 6:52 PM, no1volman said:

I’ve only cruised Carnival in the past but I would really like to try RC just to see how it differs. I looked at 7 day cruises from Port Canaveral during early July 2020 from both lines. I found one from Carnival on The Breeze and one from RC on Harmony of the Seas. Now I realize that Harmony is one of their largest ships with all the bells and whistles. But the RC cruise was around $1,500 more for my family of 3. I can understand a higher cost just based on the things the RC ship offers (climbing wall, flowrider, etc.)  But what could the RC cruise possibly offer that would justify a $1,500 difference? I really want to try a cruise on RC but that’s a really big difference. We could enjoy some really good shore excursions for that price difference. I guess that question could really only be answered by people that have been on both ships. But I would like some honest feedback. 

Cruise prices are based on availability, season, etc. It really has nothing to do with the difference in the cruise line name. We did one Carnival cruise years back, but looking at our cruising record, there's viable reasons we came back to Royal.

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1 hour ago, johnjen said:

Cruise prices are based on availability, season, etc. It really has nothing to do with the difference in the cruise line name. We did one Carnival cruise years back, but looking at our cruising record, there's viable reasons we came back to Royal.

That's sorta true...but Carnival has always been known as the discount party-boat cruise line and proud of it. Their ships offer less in most cases, they are not well maintained (a few years ago 3 ships got stranded/failed within a 14 month period), and they cater to a different crowd than Royal, Celebrity, Disney, MSC, and other offerings.

 

With Carnival, you get what you pay for...which is a cheaper cruise experience with lower standards in cabin comfort, service, and ship amenities.

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1 hour ago, CRUISEFAN0001 said:

That's sorta true...but Carnival has always been known as the discount party-boat cruise line and proud of it. Their ships offer less in most cases, they are not well maintained (a few years ago 3 ships got stranded/failed within a 14 month period), and they cater to a different crowd than Royal, Celebrity, Disney, MSC, and other offerings.

 

With Carnival, you get what you pay for...which is a cheaper cruise experience with lower standards in cabin comfort, service, and ship amenities.

Seriously.  What a joke. I like RCI but there not all that much better. They are worth a few hundred but not thousands more

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1 hour ago, Bases5 said:

Seriously.  What a joke. I like RCI but there not all that much better. They are worth a few hundred but not thousands more

If you want to see a good joke...cruise Carnival. My brother just went on a "bargain" cruise with them a few months ago...and his photos and testimony of how terrible the conditions were in his cabin and throughout the ship demonstrated what a "bargain basement cruise line" gets you. Add that to their history of ships having to be towed back to port after failures at sea...and it proves you get what you pay for in most cases.

 

If someone shops for comparable cruises...the gaps in price are not that much...but the gaps in the ships and overall experience are much greater.

 

Edited by CRUISEFAN0001
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On 7/18/2019 at 6:52 PM, no1volman said:

I’ve only cruised Carnival in the past but I would really like to try RC just to see how it differs. I looked at 7 day cruises from Port Canaveral during early July 2020 from both lines. I found one from Carnival on The Breeze and one from RC on Harmony of the Seas. Now I realize that Harmony is one of their largest ships with all the bells and whistles. But the RC cruise was around $1,500 more for my family of 3. I can understand a higher cost just based on the things the RC ship offers (climbing wall, flowrider, etc.)  But what could the RC cruise possibly offer that would justify a $1,500 difference? I really want to try a cruise on RC but that’s a really big difference. We could enjoy some really good shore excursions for that price difference. I guess that question could really only be answered by people that have been on both ships. But I would like some honest feedback. 

I sail both.  As folks have said, simple economics drives the differences.  Royal ships cost more to build and operate and they have to recover that cost thus the price difference.  Outside the ship and the shows, they are more similar than different.  If you want to spend even more coin go on Disney.  Also Royal's business model is designed to get folks to spend more on the ship (more pay restaurants, i.e., Guy's burgers on Carnival is included and very good as opposed to Johnny) or its own "land" to accelerate revenue vis-a-vis Perfect Day at Coco Cay.  Perfect will end up being a cash cow for Royal.  I wonder if Carnival will change Half Moon Cay (or similar) in response to generate more cash flow.  If the price was the same, I would likely choose Royal for a similar itinerary.  Recently for a similar itinerary in a similar cabin type, Royal had 7 day and Carnival had 8 days. Factoring that in, Royal was more for the 7 vs 8 day and normalizing the costs, it was about 20-25% more per day on Royal.  As such we chose Carnival.  That savings more than covered what we spent on the ship for excursions and booze, etc. I did however feel that the Sunrise was crowded.  I think one approach is to set a cruise length, a budget, and then decide room type, ship etc based on that budget.  To me whether I enjoy it or not is more up to me than anyone or anything.  Hope that helps.

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3 hours ago, CRUISEFAN0001 said:

Carnival has always been known as the discount party-boat cruise line and proud of it.

 

Is that still true? I know it was the image back in the 1980's with the "fun" ships booze cruise, college frat-party on the seas image but it seems they are more main stream these days, along with NCL, Royal, Princess, etc.

 

I never sailed Carnival but after many real life conversations with people that have done both, the general consensus is: Carnival has better food, better pool-side entertainment and slight better price while Royal wins on nicer ships, better overall entertainment and on-ship activities.

 

Your mileage may vary depending on the specific ship, of course.

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3 hours ago, HBE4 said:

 

Is that still true? I know it was the image back in the 1980's with the "fun" ships booze cruise, college frat-party on the seas image but it seems they are more main stream these days, along with NCL, Royal, Princess, etc.

 

I never sailed Carnival but after many real life conversations with people that have done both, the general consensus is: Carnival has better food, better pool-side entertainment and slight better price while Royal wins on nicer ships, better overall entertainment and on-ship activities.

Not sure who you spoke with...but the fact that they've had so many ships with major disaster failures/problems...there's a reason why they are cheaper...they're known as "Walmart of the Seas".

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On ‎7‎/‎19‎/‎2019 at 12:52 AM, no1volman said:

I’ve only cruised Carnival in the past but I would really like to try RC just to see how it differs. I looked at 7 day cruises from Port Canaveral during early July 2020 from both lines. I found one from Carnival on The Breeze and one from RC on Harmony of the Seas. Now I realize that Harmony is one of their largest ships with all the bells and whistles. But the RC cruise was around $1,500 more for my family of 3. I can understand a higher cost just based on the things the RC ship offers (climbing wall, flowrider, etc.)  But what could the RC cruise possibly offer that would justify a $1,500 difference? I really want to try a cruise on RC but that’s a really big difference. We could enjoy some really good shore excursions for that price difference. I guess that question could really only be answered by people that have been on both ships. But I would like some honest feedback. 

 

I´d say it´s the Price you pay to get on a ship without a cheesy whale tale on top. 

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On 7/18/2019 at 6:52 PM, no1volman said:

I’ve only cruised Carnival in the past but I would really like to try RC just to see how it differs. I looked at 7 day cruises from Port Canaveral during early July 2020 from both lines. I found one from Carnival on The Breeze and one from RC on Harmony of the Seas. Now I realize that Harmony is one of their largest ships with all the bells and whistles. But the RC cruise was around $1,500 more for my family of 3. I can understand a higher cost just based on the things the RC ship offers (climbing wall, flowrider, etc.)  But what could the RC cruise possibly offer that would justify a $1,500 difference? I really want to try a cruise on RC but that’s a really big difference. We could enjoy some really good shore excursions for that price difference. I guess that question could really only be answered by people that have been on both ships. But I would like some honest feedback. 

A royal cruise is so much better then Carnival in all areas.  Food, Service, Entertainment- It is worth it!  Have tried Carnival multiple times and as somebody previously said it is walmart of the cruise ships as is NCL.  Royal however, is more on par with Macy's or Bloomingdales-  A much better choice IMO

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I just booked a 5 night on Majesty for $179/pp., for 9/16-21!! 🙂❤️ It's gone up a little since then, but still....WOO-HOO!! Oh, and $75 OBC to boot! Can anyone beat that??

Edited by LUVINMYHUBS
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38 minutes ago, Cruise a holic said:

A royal cruise is so much better then Carnival in all areas.  Food, Service, Entertainment- It is worth it!  Have tried Carnival multiple times and as somebody previously said it is walmart of the cruise ships as is NCL.  Royal however, is more on par with Macy's or Bloomingdales-  A much better choice IMO

Fair enough yet many would not agree in all aspects.  Think most would agree royal typcially has better ships and entertainment.  It should given its advanced price point.  Carnival has better comedy shows.  Food and service feel roughly the same.  Having sailed both and reading these boards that seems to be about the typical summary.  I say Carnival is like a Marriott Courtyard and Royal like a Marriott.  Celebrity and Princess/HAL more like a Hyatt or Westin.  Never sailed a luxury line like Seabourn or Crystal yet guessing they are like a Ritz.  Never sailed NCL yet ships look nicer yet like Royal seems to up charge on food and other fun options.  Carnival has more things included and less up sell relative to "on board options".   Anyway good to listen to folks and learn from their experiences and opinions, so thanks!

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The bottom line I think is that other people are like us and had a kid or someone in the family who had cruising on the Harmony as their top pick of the mainstream choices that are within the ole vacation budget and were willing to pay a premium within reason for that.

 

Unlike some of the other posters on this thread I think Carnival offers a great value for a seven night cruise.  Room comfort and size, included dining, comedians, etc. are excellent.  I think their other shows aren't overly impressive and are sub par to offerings on other mainstream newer ships (but do people really cruise for the shows - maybe some do - still it is nice to have some shows that you would like to see, nice evening entertainment).  For Comedy, though, Carnival really tops other lines that we have tried.  We have done Carnival three times and were quite impressed with what was offered for the money.  From what I have read, the older lower rated ships on Carnival with the super party atmosphere are often really more for the short booze cruises.  I certainly didn't find that on the seven night extended family trip cruises that we have done on this line.  My parents and so many other who cruise a lot and have tried tons of different lines in general say that cruising between different lines is quite similar is so many respects (more similar than different really).  

 

On all the mainstream lines, though, as many others have stated you are going to pay a bit of a premium for the in thing (what is appealing to the masses) (the newest ships with lots of features/amenities, people wanting to change things up and try something new). 

 

Also, back to my original comment, I think a lot of cruisers aren't super price sensitive within reason.  We are a good example of that and are booked on the Harmony.  DH had a deal for 1K off on any NCL cruise, and their new ships are really nice and similarly priced to Royal (We did the NCL Escape once - very nice).  Even though Carnival is less expensive and NCL with the 1K off deal would be really cost effective (would have been best value for offerings), we didn't book either of those.  Princess, Celebrity, HAL, and Disney were more expensive, and we didn't book those either.  We don't cruise that often (only every so many years -- do more land based vacations), but for our next cruise for example, I had DS 23 who was the one in the family who wanted to do a cruise look at all the mainstream lines, ships, itineraries, and let us know his top choice.  He spent a lot of time looking at ships, itineraries, offerings.  The bottom line for us is that the particular cruise we are going on, on the Harmony, was his top choice, and that's why we booked it. (He liked the look of the ship, liked that it went to Coco Cay (sounds like he and others would like to see the new heavily advertised private island - I'm fine going, but this doesn't really appeal to me as a port), liked the other ports St. Martin and San Juan (we've been to both before), likes three days at sea because Grandpa likes more sea days and will join us, liked the show offering Grease better than main Broadway type shows offered on other RCCL and NCL ships, likes the idea of a relatively new ship, loves Carnival, but has done that one quite a few times and wanted to change things up).  We were cool because it was within reason price wise of other options (fit within our vacation budget) and liked the fact that it goes from Port Canaveral - can do a day at Disney before and visit my nephew who lives there and it's easier and cheaper for us to fly there than most other places cruises leave from (even with DS and I doing a day at the MK).  This FYI is why we are booked on the Harmony, and we are willing to pay a slight premium for a whimsical first choice for DS out of all mainstream cruise offerings he looked.    Actually I think Disney would have been DS's first choice, but he knew no other relatives would come along on that one (With what we picked we will probably have quite a few others join).  Also, Disney is so expensive that with our budget we would on Disney just be doing a three day inside with a magic window, instead of a seven day ocean view balcony on RCCL Harmony (same price lol).  

 

 

 

Edited by kathy884
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10 hours ago, CRUISEFAN0001 said:

Not sure who you spoke with...but the fact that they've had so many ships with major disaster failures/problems...there's a reason why they are cheaper...they're known as "Walmart of the Seas".

 

Most of the people I spoke with were passengers I met while on Royal cruises.  I'm always asking what other lines/ships people have sailed.  While a few prefer Royal or Carnival, most say it's a toss-up with pros and cons to both.

 

Weren't most of the Carnival ships that break down ancient vessels?  Score one for Royal in getting rid of its old ships before they become maintenance nightmares.

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48 minutes ago, kathy884 said:

The bottom line I think is that other people are like us and had a kid or someone in the family who had cruising on the Harmony as their top pick of the mainstream choices that are within the ole vacation budget and were willing to pay a premium within reason for that.

 

Unlike some of the other posters on this thread I think Carnival offers a great value for a seven night cruise.  Room comfort and size, included dining, comedians, etc. are excellent.  I think their other shows aren't overly impressive and are sub par to offerings on other mainstream newer ships (but do people really cruise for the shows - maybe some do - still it is nice to have some shows that you would like to see, nice evening entertainment).  For Comedy, though, Carnival really tops other lines that we have tried.  We have done Carnival three times and were quite impressed with what was offered for the money.  From what I have read, the older lower rated ships on Carnival with the super party atmosphere are often really more for the short booze cruises.  I certainly didn't find that on the seven night extended family trip cruises that we have done on this line.  My parents and so many other who cruise a lot and have tried tons of different lines in general say that cruising between different lines is quite similar is so many respects (more similar than different really).  

 

On all the mainstream lines, though, as many others have stated you are going to pay a bit of a premium for the in thing (what is appealing to the masses) (the newest ships with lots of features/amenities, people wanting to change things up and try something new). 

 

Also, back to my original comment, I think a lot of cruisers aren't super price sensitive within reason.  We are a good example of that and are booked on the Harmony.  DH had a deal for 1K off on any NCL cruise, and their new ships are really nice and similarly priced to Royal (We did the NCL Escape once - very nice).  Even though Carnival is less expensive and NCL with the 1K off deal would be really cost effective (would have been best value for offerings), we didn't book either of those.  Princess, Celebrity, HAL, and Disney were more expensive, and we didn't book those either.  We don't cruise that often (only every so many years -- do more land based vacations), but for our next cruise for example, I had DS 23 who was the one in the family who wanted to do a cruise look at all the mainstream lines, ships, itineraries, and let us know his top choice.  He spent a lot of time looking at ships, itineraries, offerings.  The bottom line for us is that the particular cruise we are going on, on the Harmony, was his top choice, and that's why we booked it. (He liked the look of the ship, liked that it went to Coco Cay (sounds like he and others would like to see the new heavily advertised private island - I'm fine going, but this doesn't really appeal to me as a port), liked the other ports St. Martin and San Juan (we've been to both before), likes three days at sea because Grandpa likes more sea days and will join us, liked the show offering Grease better than main Broadway type shows offered on other RCCL and NCL ships, likes the idea of a relatively new ship, loves Carnival, but has done that one quite a few times and wanted to change things up).  We were cool because it was within reason price wise of other options (fit within our vacation budget) and liked the fact that it goes from Port Canaveral - can do a day at Disney before and visit my nephew who lives there and it's easier and cheaper for us to fly there than most other places cruises leave from (even with DS and I doing a day at the MK).  This FYI is why we are booked on the Harmony, and we are willing to pay a slight premium for a whimsical first choice for DS out of all mainstream cruise offerings he looked.    Actually I think Disney would have been DS's first choice, but he knew no other relatives would come along on that one (With what we picked we will probably have quite a few others join).  Also, Disney is so expensive that with our budget we would on Disney just be doing a three day inside with a magic window, instead of a seven day ocean view balcony on RCCL Harmony (same price lol).  

 

 

 

Best post Here!!!!  Seen thru clear glasses.

Thanks for the post

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17 hours ago, CRUISEFAN0001 said:

That's sorta true...but Carnival has always been known as the discount party-boat cruise line and proud of it. Their ships offer less in most cases, they are not well maintained (a few years ago 3 ships got stranded/failed within a 14 month period), and they cater to a different crowd than Royal, Celebrity, Disney, MSC, and other offerings.

 

With Carnival, you get what you pay for...which is a cheaper cruise experience with lower standards in cabin comfort, service, and ship amenities.

 

Totally agree....

 

OK...let me adjust my flame suit here first...OK...good to go.  

 

What do you find at a Carnival?....Clowns!!  😄 

 

Well....this IS an RCI forum anyway.  😉 

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21 minutes ago, HBE4 said:

Weren't most of the Carnival ships that break down ancient vessels?  Score one for Royal in getting rid of its old ships before they become maintenance nightmares.

The most well-known (but not all of them):

 

- Carnival Sunshine failed in 2018 - refit in 2018.

- Carnival Elation Major Power Failed in 2017- refit in 2018

- Carnival had 4 major ship fails in 2013 - Triumph, Elation, Dream, and Legend all had propulsion, electrical or mechanical problems at sea

 

Carnival has a reputation of doing minimum and far too infrequent maintenance on their ships.

 

Many folks consider their "bargain" fares nothing more than a bribe to try their risky fleet.

 

Royal has a regular schedule of refurbishments, and also interim maintenance as needed. The onboard features of Royal ships are also well-known for being much better than many other fleets.

 

Edited by CRUISEFAN0001
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