What Does Amped Ship Mean? See Full Details of Each Project



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If you’ve seen some of the Royal Caribbean ships described as ‘Amped’ ships, you might be wondering what on earth it means, and whether it’s a good thing.

In this guide, I’ll lay it all out for you. What exactly Royal means by ‘Amped’ ships, and which ships have already been Amped.

Royal Caribbean cruise ship

What Does Royal Caribbean Mean by Amped Ship?

An ‘Amped’ ship is a ship which has undergone a renovation as part of Royal Caribbean’s Amplification program. This program saw old features on ships being brought up to date, and new features added to older ships.

Each Amped ship has been treated differently – there are some consistencies between classes of ship, but the renovations have been bespoke to the individual ships.

The Amplification program started in 2018, and work was completed on six of the ships in the fleet. Plans were in place for another three ships to receive upgrades, but these were put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic and have so far yet to be revisited.

However there were hints in the company’s second-quarter earnings call in 2023 that ships may enter dry dock in the latter part of 2024. Could we soon be seeing a Royal Caribbean Amplification Schedule 2024 published?

Read more: Royal Caribbean Amplification Schedule

Abyss slide being added to Oasis of the Seas
Abyss slide being added to Oasis of the Seas

What Areas of the Ships Were Focused on During Amplification?

The Royal Amplified program targeted three main themes on each ship. These themes were the Pool Deck & Attractions, Bars & Nightlife, and Dining Mission. The program was not focussed on accommodation on the ships, although two ships did get some new staterooms as part of the refurbishment.

In more detail, those areas are:

1. Pool Deck & Attractions

This element of the program focused on breathing new life into the pool decks. On some ships, this meant opening up the spaces to offer more ways to lounge during the day, while on others the aim was to bring a wider range of daytime and nighttime activities to the pool areas.

This element also focussed on adding some of the most popular attractions to older ships, and some brand new ones too. Additions included the Sky Pad, the Perfect Storm slide, Laser Tag and escape rooms.

Navigator of the Seas pool deck

2. Bars & Nightlife

Under this part of the program, Royal Caribbean looked to revitalise the nightlife and bar options on some ships by adding some of the newer favourite venues. Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade, and the Bamboo Room, were popular additions to some of the ships.

Royal Caribbean's Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade

3. Dining Mission

From new speciality dining restaurants to improved casual dining options, this final part of the program helps to deliver new eating experiences to classic ships.

Venues that have debuted on modern ships and are now being added to the older members of the fleet include El Loco Fresh, the Mexican grab-and-go venue, and Hooked seafood.

Portside BBQ on amplified Oasis of the Seas

What Has Each Amped Ship Received?

Here’s a look at each of the Amped ships so far, and what they have received as part of the program:

Independence of the Seas

Independence of the Seas

Independence of the Seas, part of the Freedom Class for Royal Caribbean, was the first ship to undergo the Amplification program.

Independence of the Seas received the following updates:

  • The Perfect Storm waterslides
  • Laser Tag: Battle for Planet Z
  • A new escape room experience
  • Several new lounges
  • New Panoramic Oceanview stateroom options
  • Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade
  • Izumi Hibachi & Sushi restaurant
  • Fish & Ships
  • The Sugar Beach candy shop

Independence of the Seas was one of only two ships to be Amped so far that has new accommodation options.

Mariner of the Seas

Young girl on Mariner of the Seas

Mariner of the Seas first launched in 2003 and is part of the Voyager Class – not the oldest ships in the fleet, but significantly older and smaller than the biggest and best too. So her $120 million Amplification was needed.

The Amplification of Mariner of the Seas included:

  • The Sky Pad bungee trampoline experience
  • The Perfect Storm waterslides 
  • Laser Tag: Battle for Planet Z
  • A new escape room experience
  • The Bamboo Room restaurant
  • Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade
  • Jamie’s Italian restaurant
  • Izumi Hibachi and Sushi restaurant

Navigator of the Seas

Navigator of the Seas

The Navigator of the Seas is another member of the Voyager Class to have been through the Amplification program, and her $115 million renovation included a lot of changes.

Featured added to Navigator of the Seas were:

  • The Perfect Storm waterslides
  • To Dry For Blow-dry bar at sea
  • A reimagined poolscape
  • The Lime & Coconut pool bar
  • Hooked Seafood restaurant
  • The Bamboo Room restaurant
  • Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade
  • Jamie’s Italian restaurant
  • Upgraded furnishings in the Windjammer buffet restaurant
  • El Loco Fresh restaurant
  • Upgrades to the adults-only Solarium
  • Laser Tag in Studio B
  • Starbucks coffee shop

Voyager of the Seas

Voyager of the Seas

The original member of the Voyager Class, Voyager of the Seas is the third ship in that class to have undergone the Amplification program. The list of upgrades doesn’t look quite as long, but a huge $97 million was still spent.

Voyager of the Seas Amplification included the following:

  • The Perfect Storm waterslides
  • Laser Tag: Battle for Planet Z
  • A reinvigoration for the Vitality Spa and Fitness Center onboard
  • Completely redesigned areas for kids and teens
  • 72 new staterooms including Insides and Balconies
  • New support for the Royal Caribbean smartphone app

Oasis of the Seas

Oasis of the Seas

Even the biggest ships in the world can fit in some new attractions and upgrades – and the original Oasis-class ship, Oasis of the Seas, was the first of her class to be renovated in 2019.

In fact, she received the longest list of individual upgrades.

 The Oasis of the Seas amplification included all of the following: 

  • A new, Caribbean-style pool deck
  • The Lime & Coconut signature bar
  • The Ultimate Abyss dry slide
  • The Perfect Storm waterslides
  • A new Splashaway Bay kids’ aqua park
  • Portside BBQ restaurant
  • El Loco Fresh restaurant
  • Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade
  • The Sugar Beach candy shop
  • A new karaoke venue, Spotlight Karaoke
  • A new Music Hall venue
  • The Bionic Bar
  • A revamped Adventure Ocean for kids’ clubs
  • A new escape room experience

Freedom of the Seas

Freedom of the Seas

Freedom of the Seas of the Freedom Class was the last Royal Caribbean ship to be Amplified, in early 2020. Her renovation cost $116 million.

The Freedom of the Seas Amplification included:

  • A new, Caribbean-style pool deck
  • The Lime & Coconut signature bar
  • A new Splashaway Bay kids’ aqua park
  • Upgrades to the adults-only Solarium
  • Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen restaurant (new for the cruise line at the time)
  • El Loco Fresh restaurant
  • Izumi Hibachi & Sushi restaurant
  • Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade
  • Laser Tag: Clash for the Crystal City
  • A revamped Adventure Ocean for kids’ clubs
  • New Social033 teens club
  • Updates to the Royal Caribbean smartphone app, including Expedited Arrival and the option to control your stateroom TV from your phone

Final Word

Not all of the Amped ships for Royal Caribbean are really old. It’s just that, since the launch of the Quantum Class, really, there have been a lot of innovations in the ships’ features that are worth rolling out to pre-existing ships in the fleet.

It’s obviously much cheaper to renovate than it is to build brand new, so Royal’s Amplified program will help to keep some of the older ships looking their best, and offering the features that families want to enjoy.

Let’s just hope the program gets back on track soon, and some of the other ships in the fleet that need a bit of TLC aren’t waiting too long to join their Royal Caribbean Amped ships sisters.

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Jenni Fielding is the founder of Cruise Mummy. She has worked in the cruise industry since 2015 and has taken over 30 cruises. Now, she helps over 1 million people per month to plan their perfect cruise holidays.

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