Most major cruise lines have a loyalty programme – something to encourage guests to rebook with the same cruise line again and again. Royal Caribbean is no different – its Crown and Anchor Society offers guests various incentives and rewards for sticking with Royal Caribbean.
There are six levels to the Crown and Anchor Society, and one of those is Gold. Gold sounds good, right? So what does being a Gold member mean for you?
This guide has everything you need to know about being Gold status on Royal Caribbean. It includes all the latest benefits – they got a big update in October 2023!
How To Become a Royal Caribbean Gold Member
To become a Royal Caribbean Gold Member, you need to enrol in the Crown & Anchor Society programme and then take any Royal Caribbean cruise lasting three nights or more. The gold level is the lowest tier in the loyalty programme.
Unfortunately, you shouldn’t get too excited by being a Royal Caribbean Gold status. While “gold” might make it sound like a top tier, it’s actually the entry level for the Crown & Anchor Society.
To become a member of the Crown & Anchor Society, you need to sign up to an account with Royal Caribbean and then, on the Account section of the website, click on the Crown & Anchor section and press the button to enrol.
You’ll then be assigned a membership number, and if you’ve already cruised with Royal Caribbean (and have those bookings linked to your online account), you’ll automatically jump to the correct tier, which could be Gold.
If you’ve cruised with Royal Caribbean before but didn’t have those bookings linked to your online account with Royal Caribbean, you can call the cruise line and ask them to add the points to your account.
When you first enrol, and before you’ve cruised, you’re not quite a member of the Gold tier. You need to reach the number of points to meet Gold status, but don’t worry – it’s really easy.
How Many Points Do You Need To Be a Gold Member on Royal Caribbean?
To be a Gold Member with Royal Caribbean’s Crown & Anchor Society, you need three cruise points. To achieve these points, you can either cruise for three nights in a regular stateroom or two nights in a suite.
It’s important to note that you only qualify for the next tier in the Crown & Anchor Society when you complete your cruise. So if you’re on a 7-night cruise, you won’t become Gold status after three nights – you’ll have to wait until the cruise is over, and then you’ll be at Gold level for your next cruise.
You earn one cruise point for every night you spend on a Royal Caribbean ship in a regular Interior, Ocean View, or Balcony Stateroom. You get double points for staying in a Suite.
Suggested read: Royal Caribbean Suite Perks
It’s also good to note that, if you don’t want to sail exclusively with Royal Caribbean, you can earn points by cruising with sister brand Celebrity Cruises as well. You just need to call the Royal Caribbean team to ask them to add the points for you.
Royal Caribbean Gold Benefits
Here’s a full list of all the benefits you get as a Royal Caribbean Crown & Anchor Society Gold member:
1. Drinks Discount Coupons
Whenever you cruise with Royal Caribbean as a Gold tier member, you’ll be given four coupons to use during the cruise. Two of these are for any glass of wine, beer or soda, while the other two can be used in Johnny Rockets towards a milkshake.
The coupons are all good for 50% off, so you can get a decent saving on those drinks (if you’ve not already bought a drinks package for your cruise).
2. More Drink Discounts
As well as the coupon discounts, which have limited uses, you also get a one-time 10% discount on any glass of wine, beer or soda that you purchase. The discount will be applied as the drink is charged to your account.
You also get 25% off any coffee drinks you buy, except for in Starbucks – those will always be full price, regardless of what level you are in the Crown & Anchor Society.
These are discounts you only get once per sailing.
3. Private Departure Lounge Access
At most embarkation ports, Crown & Anchor Society guests are invited into a private departure lounge where they can wait to board the ship and enjoy a complimentary continental breakfast of pastries, juices and coffee.
Remember though that this is open to all Gold level members and above, which is likely to be a majority of the people on the ship – only people on their first Royal Caribbean cruise can’t access the lounge. So while a free breakfast is a nice bonus, don’t expect the lounge to be particularly quiet.
It also isn’t available at every port – and the terms and conditions don’t state which ports it is available in. So you’ll need to wait until you get your boarding information sent to you to see if you get this perk.
4. WiFi Package Discounts
If you wait to buy your VOOM WiFi internet package onboard the ship, you’ll save 10% as a Gold-level member. This can’t be combined with any other VOOM offers though, and you might be able to grab other discounts before you sail.
Usually, the discounts you get before sailing are bigger than 10%, but keep an eye on the Cruise Planner app. The best time to buy might be before you board, though if you have a last-minute change of heart then getting 10% off during the cruise is something, at least.
5. Casino and Bingo Perks
Every Crown & Anchor Society member gets a FreePlay credit for the casino on the ship. It’s never huge, and at Gold level it’s $2. Still, you never know what a $2 spin on a slot machine could win you.
Here’s how to claim your free credit:
- Log into your casino account using the card machine in the casino and your SeaPass
- Click on ‘PERSONAL BANKER’, then ‘TRANSFER TO GAME’ and then ‘PROMO$’
- You’ll see the free credit there, so transfer it to your account and then use it on the slot machines included in the offer
Understandably, you can’t cash out the FreePlay credit, you need to use it. But you can cash out any winnings.
You’ll also get a bingo perk too – whenever you buy a bingo package, you’ll get one free jackpot card, slightly increasing your chances of winning.
6. Discounts on Royal Caribbean Products
There’s always a selection of stores on a Royal Caribbean ship selling various items, but one thing you’ll find will be a range of Royal Caribbean-branded products – when you really want to show off your loyalty to the cruise line.
And as a Gold member, you get 10% off any of these products, provided you spend at least $25.
7. Spa Discounts
Gold-tier members get discounts on most spa services booked onboard their cruise – again, it’s 10% off. The only exceptions are medi-spa services, which aren’t discounted at all.
8. Member Newsletter
All Crown & Anchor Society members get an exclusive newsletter sent to them, which includes details of upcoming ships, sales that are starting soon and more.
9. Access to Exclusive Rates
Guests also get access to exclusive rates through the Crown and Anchor Society for future cruises. Don’t expect stunning discounts – again, remember that anybody who has cruised with Royal Caribbean before is eligible for gold-tier status, so it’s not like the cruises are discounted by 50% or anything ridiculous.
But you can still get some good offers, that the general public won’t have access to.
Youth Member Benefits
Under-18s who cruise with Royal Caribbean can be enrolled in the Crown & Anchor Society. They then build up their own cruise points, but in the background – instead, they will be treated as the same membership tier as their parents until their 18th birthday.
So, if you’ve been cruising before you’ve had kids, your child will benefit from boosted perks until they hit 18, at which point they’ll revert back to the correct tier for them based on their own cruise points.
While you are in the Gold tier, these are the perks your children can enjoy:
1. Ice Cream Discount
Kids can get 50% off ice cream at the Ben & Jerry’s counter on their Royal Caribbean ship. That’s a pretty good saving, and while free ice cream is available elsewhere, you can’t beat a scoop of B&J’s for flavour.
2. WiFi Package Discounts
Young members get the same WiFi discount as their parents, so at the Gold level that’s 10% off. You can get higher discounts as you climb the tiers of the C&A Society.
3. Buy-One-Get-One-Free Movie Rentals
If you want a cosy night in your stateroom, you have the option of renting a movie on the TV. Kids who are Gold members can get a second movie for half-price when they rent a movie, good for either a double feature night or keeping them busy for two nights of your cruise.
4. Arcade Cashback
Whenever kids in the Crown & Anchor Society play in the arcades, they can get cashback which is deducted from your onboard account at the end of your cruise.
You’ll get $5 back for every $15 spent in arcade credits, or $25 back for every $50 they spend in arcade credits – so really, if they get $50 to spend in the arcade, it’s only going to cost you $25.
What Does Gold Choice Mean on Royal Caribbean?
Gold Choice with Royal Caribbean is actually a combination of two different statuses. The ‘Gold’ refers to your status in the Crown & Anchor Society loyalty programme, while ‘Choice’ is your status in the Club Royale casino loyalty programme.
The Club Royale programme is completely separate, and you move up the tiers by playing casino games. Choice is the entry-level tier, so anyone who’s been on a single Royal Caribbean cruise tends to be ranked Gold Choice unless they spend a LOT in the casino on that first cruise.
What Is Pre-Gold Status on Royal Caribbean?
If you have Pre-Gold status on Royal Caribbean, it just means that you’ve signed up to the Crown & Anchor Society but you haven’t yet got the 3 cruise points needed to reach Gold status. It basically means you’ve signed up but never taken a Royal Caribbean cruise.
As soon as you’ve got that first cruise in the books, you’ll move onto the proper Crown & Anchor Society tiers, starting at Gold.
When you’re Pre-Gold, you won’t get any perks on your cruise, but at least you’ll be earning the points you need to start climbing up the tiers.
Do Gold Members Get Free Drinks on Royal Caribbean?
Gold Crown & Anchor Society members don’t get any free drinks beyond the usual free drinks given to all guests (juices, teas and coffees at breakfast etc). Gold members do get 10% off glasses of wine, beer and soda on the ship, along with some single-use coupons for 50% off.
You only start getting free drinks when you reach Diamond status, which requires 80 points in the programme.
What Comes After Gold on Royal Caribbean?
The next tier above Gold with Royal Caribbean’s Crown & Anchor Society is Platinum, which needs 30 cruise points – the same as spending 30 nights on a Royal Caribbean ship, or 15 nights if you book suites.
After that, you’ll reach Emerald status at 55 points, then Diamond at 80 points, and then Diamond Plus at 175 points. There is one higher tier, which is Pinnacle Club, but that requires a massive 700 points.
Royal Caribbean Gold vs Platinum
When you upgrade to Platinum from Gold in the Crown & Anchor Society, you get a few additional benefits, along with some improvements on the existing benefits.
Here’s a look at the two status tiers compared:
|Benefit||Gold Level||Platinum Level|
|50% off coupons for wine, beer & soda||2 per cruise||2 per cruise|
|50% off coupons for Johnny Rockets milkshakes||2 per cruise||2 per cruise|
|Access to private departure lounge||YES||YES|
|Discount on wine, beer and soda||10%||10%|
|Discount on coffee beverages (excluding Starbucks)||25%||50%|
|Discount on VOOM internet||10%||15%|
|Exclusive Top Tier event on 5+ night sailings||–||YES|
|Casino Royale FreePlay||$2||$4|
|Free Jackpot cards with Bingo packages||1 card||3 cards|
|Robes to use on the cruise||–||YES|
|$5 off $25 dry-clean or pressing||–||YES|
|Discount on $34.99 laundry bags||–||$5|
|20% off a single photo, photo package or photobook||–||YES|
|Discount on Royal Caribbean branded products||10%||10%|
|Discount on spa treatments||10%||15%|
|Newsletter & exclusive rates||YES||YES|
|Discount on Balcony & Suite Staterooms||–||YES|
|Loyalty Match with Celebrity Cruises’ Captain’s Club||–||YES|
While ‘Gold’ might sound like it’s the top of the pile, it’s actually the lowest tier with the Crown & Anchor Society.
However, don’t feel disheartened. Honestly, the rewards are actually not that bad, considering you only need to cruise once with Royal Caribbean to qualify. There are other cruise lines where the entry tier only gets you one or two benefits at most.
So it’s worth setting up your account on the Royal Caribbean website and starting to collect those points. And with just a few cruises, you’ll already be climbing the ranks to get even better perks and incentives.
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