The Royal Caribbean Amplification program is designed to give some of the older ships in the fleet a boost – adding new features, revamping some old ones, and generally making sure that the fleet is offering the best quality of cruise to every passenger that steps onboard.
However, the program was paused by the COVID-19 pandemic when it was still underway. Is it back, and which ships are due to be improved? Let’s find out.
Which Royal Caribbean ships have been Amplified?
There are six Royal Caribbean ships that have undergone the Amplification program so far:
- Independence of the Seas
- Mariner of the Seas
- Navigator of the Seas
- Voyager of the Seas
- Oasis of the Seas
- Freedom of the Seas
The ships have not been given the exact same upgrades – there are some similarities within the classes, but each ship has had a bespoke renovation.
Here’s a look at the full list of Royal Caribbean ships, and whether they have been amplified or not:
|Ship Name||Class||Year Launched||Amplified?|
|Grandeur of the Seas||Vision Class||1996||No|
|Rhapsody of the Seas||Vision Class||1997||No|
|Enchantment of the Seas||Vision Class||1997||No|
|Vision of the Seas||Vision Class||1998||No|
|Voyager of the Seas||Voyager Class||1999||Yes – 2019|
|Explorer of the Seas||Voyager Class||2000||Postponed|
|Adventure of the Seas||Voyager Class||2001||Postponed|
|Radiance of the Seas||Radiance Class||2001||No|
|Navigator of the Seas||Voyager Class||2002||Yes – 2019|
|Brilliance of the Seas||Radiance Class||2002||No|
|Mariner of the Seas||Voyager Class||2003||Yes – 2018|
|Serenade of the Seas||Radiance Class||2003||No|
|Jewel of the Seas||Radiance Class||2004||No|
|Freedom of the Seas||Freedom Class||2006||Yes – 2020|
|Liberty of the Seas||Freedom Class||2007||Postponed|
|Independence of the Seas||Freedom Class||2008||Yes – 2018|
|Oasis of the Seas||Oasis Class||2009||Yes – 2019|
|Allure of the Seas||Oasis Class||2010||Postponed|
|Quantum of the Seas||Quantum Class||2014||No|
|Anthem of the Seas||Quantum Class||2015||No|
|Harmony of the Seas||Oasis Class||2016||No|
|Ovation of the Seas||Quantum Class||2016||No|
|Symphony of the Seas||Oasis Class||2018||No|
|Spectrum of the Seas||Quantum Ultra Class||2019||No|
|Odyssey of the Seas||Quantum Ultra Class||2021||No|
|Wonder of the Seas||Oasis Class||2022||No|
This latest information comes from Royal Caribbean’s 2023 Fleet Guide which you can see below…
As it stands, the Amplification program remains paused. There has been no confirmation from Royal Caribbean on when it will resume, or even if it will resume – it may be replaced by another program altogether.
This leaves some uncertainty over some of the ships in the fleet and whether there are plans still to update them, or if the focus instead moves to new ships, including the last Oasis-class ship named Utopia of the Seas and the upcoming Icon Class.
Which Royal Caribbean ships were due to be Amplified?
There were four Royal Caribbean ships scheduled to be amplified before the program was put on hold. These were the Adventure of the Seas, Explorer of the Seas, Liberty of the Seas and Allure of the Seas.
All four had their renovations cancelled due to the global shutdown and the inability of contractors to enter the ships to be able to work on them. And while cruising with Royal Caribbean is essentially back on track now, the program hasn’t been green-lit to resume.
That could be for any number of reasons. It might be that they are looking at different ways to upgrade the older ships. Or they may be looking at prioritising budgets on the new builds instead for now.
We do know some of the details of what the upgrades would have been.
Explorer of the Seas was due to get:
- The Perfect Storm waterslides
- Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen restaurant
- A re-imagined pool deck
- The Lime & Coconut bar
- Transformed kids and teens spaces
- Izumi restaurant
- Chops Grille American Steakhouse restaurant
- Boleros Latin lounge
- Schooners Bar
- Playmakers Sports Bar & Lounge
Allure of the Seas was due to get:
- Ultimate Abyss dry slides
- The Perfect Storm waterslides
- Revamped Adventure Ocean and teens spaces
- Expanded Splashaway Bay
- Lime & Coconut Bar
- Laser Tag: Clash in the Crystal City
- The Royal Escape Room – Apollo 18: Lunar Landing
- Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar restaurant
- Portside BBQ restaurant
- El Loco Fresh restaurant
- The Sugar Beach candy store
- Bionic Bar
- Spotlight Karaoke
- Music Hall
We don’t know the full list of upgrades planned for Liberty of the Seas and Adventure of the Seas.
Is Royal Caribbean going to Amplify the older ships?
The original Amped program set out to upgrade the Voyager Class, Freedom Class and the older two ships of the Oasis Class only. There have been no plans to renovate the Radiance Class and the Vision Class ships to the same extent.
These ships are smaller, and so it may be harder to find the space to add some of the upgrades being given to the larger ships of the fleet. But especially with the Vision Class, the ships are also older too.
It may be that Royal Caribbean is preparing to sell those ships in the next few years. It wouldn’t make financial sense to spend $50-100 million upgrading a ship with features specific to Royal Caribbean that you’re then going to sell.
I’m not suggesting it is already agreed – these popular older ships might have plenty of life in them yet. But cruise lines do retire or sell older ships eventually, and so the lack of a plan to upgrade the oldest ships in the fleet could be indicative of a roadmap to them leaving the fleet.
Is Royal Caribbean going to Amplify the newer ships?
Royal Caribbean has no plans to Amplify the newer Oasis-class ships, or the Quantum or Quantum Ultra classes. The Amplification program is designed to add the features of these newer ships to the older ones.
Will they be renovated eventually? Possibly, although these newer ships might end up just getting the servicing dry docks in future.
It depends on the new innovations Royal Caribbean creates for its newest ships, and then whether the cruise line decides it’s worth revisiting the fleet to retroactively add them.
I wish I had more concrete news to share – especially if you were looking at booking cruises on any of the ships with their Amped programs postponed – but for now, it remains on the backburner for Royal Caribbean.
I’m sure decisions will be made in the next year or two at most to look back over these ships and find a way to improve them. Royal Caribbean never rests on its laurels and always looks to have the best fleet – something that can only be achieved by giving some of the older ships some TLC.
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