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Like most cruise lines, Royal Caribbean offers a casino loyalty rewards program for cruisers who like to, well, gamble. Known as Club Royale®, the rewards program for casino aficionados is separate and distinct from the regular loyalty program dedicated to frequent floaters like us. The program offers the opportunity to earn tier points with four different status levels as you accrue points.
Benefits of the program run the gamut from free drinks while playing in the casino to free wi-fi, and at the highest level, a complimentary Grand Suite aboard one cruise per year! You can review all of the program’s benefits here. All you need to do to join the program is present your Seapass card when playing in Casino Royale aboard Royal Caribbean ships.
However, availability of “free” cruises through the program may not always mean what you think. According to TheStreet.com, Royal Caribbean has implemented a change to certain cruise offers for Club Royale® members. According to the article,
“When you get a free offer — at least until now — it covers whatever class of room you get offered for two people (you can bring a third and fourth, but will pay full price for them). Now, some members of the Royal Caribbean Club Royale Facebook group have shared that they have gotten offers where only the first person is free with the other paying full fare.” – bold mine
Now, this offer should not be confused with the annual complimentary cruise offered to Prime, Signature, and Masters level program members. That hasn’t changed. But it is clear to me that something has changed (around April 10th or so) in regards to other cruise offers program members had become accustomed to receiving and there’s quite a bit of griping about it in various online forums. The majority of complaints appear to be about the level of discounting and paying the fare for a second passenger when cruising alone.
Is Club Royale® Worth the Bother?
In my opinion, YES!!! While there may be a tweak to just one of the “free” cruise rewards received, that doesn’t negate the value achieved otherwise. Free drinks when gambling in the casino is worth the bother of collecting tier points alone, not to mention the annual complimentary cruise offers beginning at the Prime level. If you’re inclined to gamble at all, you should always insert your Seapass card at the slot machines and present it when playing at tables to collect tier points in the Club Royale® program. That, combined with Royal Caribbean’s popular Crown and Anchor society loyalty program for all guests is a powerful combination to obtain perks to take your cruise from great to first rate.
As a side note, it will be interesting if this change impacts offers for status match cruises with Royal Caribbean very similar to the ones René recently booked on both Holland America as well as Carnival from his Caesars Diamond status. – MJ
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