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Episode 272 - What to pack in your carry-on bag

What you pack in your carry-on for the first day of your cruise can sometimes be the difference between a great start to your cruise and a not-so-great start. In the hours before your luggage is delivered to your stateroom, you will need to plan what you want to have with you, contrasted with what you are willing to carry around until that time. To get your cruise started off on the right foot, I’ve come up with my list of the most important things to pack for your upcoming cruise


Episode 271 - Mariner of the Seas listener cruise review

Royal Caribbean has been actively working to revitalize many of its cruise ships over the last few years and each multi-million dollar project has resulted in new and improved experiences for guests across the ship. Perhaps among the most impressive updates any Royal Caribbean ship has received is Mariner of the Seas, which had a lot of work done to her earlier this year. Someone who just on Mariner of the Seas earlier this month joins me to discuss the changes made to the ship, as we review...


Episode 270 - Brilliance of the Seas cruise review

Some of my favorite type of cruises are the long weekend getaway sailings, because it is an inexpensive way to work in a quick cruise fix. This week, I had the pleasure of going on a 4-night cruise on Brilliance of the Seas. I’ve got a full review of the cruise, as well as insight into my foray with the ultimate dining package and unlimited drink package.Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royalcaribbeanblogPeriscope:&n


Episode 269 - Shore excursions: St. Maarten

Going on a cruise to the Eastern Caribbean will probably take you to the beautiful island of St. Maarten. With St. Maarten, you get two islands in one with a Dutch and French side and this week, I will be talking about what there is to do all around St. Maarten and share my advice for how to tour the island effectively. I’ll also talk about the recent hurricane damage and what to expect. Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFaceboo


Episode 268 - WiFi information, prices and how to get a discount

One big push Royal Caribbean is going with these days is providing internet access while at sea. Some people find it really useful while others prefer to stay unconnected. Regardless, more internet access is available to cruise guests all the time and this week, we’re going to look at how you can get connected while at sea and what the future may hold as well.Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royalcaribbeanblogPeriscope: @th


Episode 267 - Adventure of the Seas Canada & New England listener cruise review

Taking a Royal Caribbean cruise to Canada and New England is a route Matt has never done, so this week, James joins Matt to talk about what it was like to sail this itinerary. James reviews his Adventure of the Seas cruise, what he did in port, and how Royal Caribbean compares to Disney Cruise Line.Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royalcaribbeanblogPeriscope: @therclblogEmail: matt@royalcaribbeanblog.comLeave a voi


Episode 266 - Freedom of the Seas listener cruise review

Freedom of the Seas recently repositioned to her new homeport of San Juan, Puerto Rico, where she offers 7-night cruises to the Southern Caribbean. On this week's episode, Jose reviews his recent Freedom of the Seas sailing and shares what he thought of the ship and the islands he visited.Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royalcaribbeanblogPeriscope: @therclblogEmail: matt@royalcaribbeanblog.comLeave a voicemail:&nb


Episode 265 - First time cruise tips

In searching for that "just right" first cruise, you've followed all the rules -- researched cruise lines, examined possible itineraries and read all you can on You've booked your ship, selected a stateroom and picked an itinerary. So what's next? You'd be surprised at how many factors remain to be considered, such as packing, getting to the ship and life onboard. This week, I’m sharing some general first-time cruise tips that will help you get started in planning your


Episode 264 - Royal Caribbean vs Norwegian Cruise Line

Inevitably I get a lot of folks who are interested in taking a Royal Caribbean cruise after trying another cruise line and want to know how it compares. Likewise, some that have cruise on Royal Caribbean are curious how the competition stacks up to their cruise experience. This week, I wanted to tackle the comparison of Royal Caribbean versus Norwegian Cruise Line and share some experiences with folks who have done both. It’s an in-depth look at the cruise experience on both lines,


Episode 263 - Wheelchair accessibility on Royal Caribbean

Royal Caribbean is known for many things, including being one of the most wheelchair accessible cruises line out there. On this week’s episode, I’ll be discussing the important tips, tricks and secrets to going on a Royal Caribbean cruise if you or someone in your group is using a wheelchair. Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royalcaribbeanblogPeriscope: @therclblogEmail: matt@royalcaribbeanblog.comLeave a


Episode 262 - Mariner of the Seas listener cruise review

Royal Caribbean’s $120 million makeover of Mariner of the Seas is turning heads and getting more people than ever taking a weekend getaway cruise on this fabulously updated ship. There is a lot to love about what Royal Caribbean added to Mariner of the Seas and so this week, we are talking about what was added and what stands out about Mariner of the Seas. Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royalcaribbeanblogPeriscope:&


Episode 261 - Becoming a Pinnacle Club member in Crown and Anchor Society

Regardless of your status in Royal Caribbean’s Customer Loyalty Program, it’s hard not to dream about someday reaching the uppermost level of Crown and Anchor Society, Pinnacle Club. Being a Pinnacle Member means you are among the few that have cruised on Royal Caribbean the most and also have the opportunity to take advantage of some pretty great perks. This week, we have on the podcast with me someone that recently became a Pinnacle Club member and we will talk about what it ta


Episode 260 - Booking another cruise onboard

It’s not hard to imagine being on a Royal Caribbean cruise and enjoying an incredible family vacation when suddenly you have the epiphany that you ought to do this again. And again. And again. Booking more cruises comes hand in hand with having a passion for cruising, and this week, we are going to talk about Royal Caribbean’s NextCruise program, which offers some incentives for rebooking onboard. We will talk about what the program offers, how to take advantage of it, and what you need to k


Episode 259 - Cruise etiquette

We are treading into the murky waters of cruise ship etiquette this week, and talking about the do’s and don’ts of how to act on a cruise ship. We are definitely not dictating how everyone should act on a cruise ship, but it is an opportunity to discuss the expected behavior and social norms you should expect on a Royal Caribbean cruise.Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royalcaribbeanblogPeriscope: @therclblogEmail: m


Episode 258 - Majesty of the Seas cruise to Cuba review

Perhaps no destination has gotten as much attention in the last couple of years as Cuba. With Royal Caribbean offering cruises to this once off limits island, I couldn’t help not booking one myself and on this week’s episode, I’ll review my recent 5-night cruise on Royal Caribbean’s Majesty of the Seas to Cuba and the Caribbean. It’s not only a look at what Cuba is all about and my experience in old Havana, but also my first time trying a ship the size of Majesty of the Seas.Share with


Episode 257 - Alaska cruise review

We’re back from an amazing cruise on Royal Caribbean’s Explorer of the Seas and I got to share this 7-night Alaska experience with my friends from This week’s episode was recorded live onboard Explorer of the Seas, and we shared our experiences visiting Alaska.Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royalcaribbeanblogPeriscope: @therclblogEmail: matt@royalcaribbeanblog.comLeave a voicemail: (4


Episode 256 - How to learn everything about your ship before you sail

The internet is a wealth of information and one of the best means to research pretty much anything, including your upcoming Royal Caribbean cruise. As soon as you book that Royal Caribbean cruise, very likely you are going to want to learn about what you can do onboard, where you can eat, what you can eat, what’s included and not included and much more. The answers to all these questions and more can be found around the internet and this week, I talk about my favorite ways to learn everything


Episode 255 - Explorer of the Seas cruise preview

It is hard to beat that feeling when you know your cruise is just days away, and this week, I’ve got that loving feeling again because my next Royal Caribbean cruise is coming up and I will preview my upcoming adventure on Explorer of the Seas to Alaska. In this episode, I will discuss my plans for the cruise, why I picked this ship and talk about the many friends that are joining us for it.Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royal


Episode 254 - Analyzing the Perfect Day at CocoCay offerings

Royal Caribbean recently unveiled all the details and pricing for what we can expect to find at Perfect Day at CocoCay. The massive upgrade to Royal Caribbean's private island in the Bahamas means big changes and this week, we discuss the pricing and policies announced and how it will impact a day spent on the island.Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...Twitter: @therclblogFacebook: /royalcaribbeanblogPeriscope: @therclblogEmail: matt@royalcaribbean


Episode 253 - Should I upgrade? (Take two)

At some point in planning a Royal Caribbean cruise, you may reach a proverbial crossroad where which stateroom to book becomes a more complex decision than you experience in the past. Upgrading yourself to the next category stateroom can be very tempting, and inevitably you may be wondering, “is it worth it” to spend that extra money. Back on episode 210 we went through this exercise of debating what was worthwhile, and we had so much with it, I thought we’d come back with a fe