Royal Caribbean Vs Celebrity

Compare Royal Vs Celebrity


1/6/20243 min read

Emerald Crown and Anchor Royal Caribbean
Emerald Crown and Anchor Royal Caribbean

The sister lines are under the same umbrella company, yet they are two completely different experiences.

Royal is definitely geared towards families of all sizes, with tons of exciting activities for the young and old alike. Most of the ships now feature the surf simulator, offer an arcades for the kids and teens and various aged kid clubs and hangout areas. The kid programs start at 6 months and offers babysitting for an added fee. The line is growing and building mega ship, after mega ship. They have a WOW factor to them, some with sprawling neighborhoods. Others with telescoping "viewing portals" aka the Northstar, this was so incredible cruising down the Alaskan coast. Defiantly try this sometime when you are at sailing and near land.

Guest on Royal Caribbean are laid back, adventurous at heart and typically traveling with family, mostly multi-generational. So, expect kids on any sailing but expect a ton of kids during peak seasons, like winter break, spring break and summer time. The smaller vessels are geared a bit towards middle aged and retired guest, offering longer itineraries and more off the beaten path trips. This line focuses on Caribbean cruise but also offer seasonal destinations in over 300 ports world wide.

The food is well done and newer ships have quirky restaurants, like Wonderland with an imaginative dining experiences. The Sushi is some of the best I've had at sea or on land for that matter. It's a must at least once on every cruise.

The line keeps you entertained with activities scheduled seemly around the clock.

I've sailed on 5 different Royal ships in various classes and have always had a great time, with friendly service all around. Though, I am finding that I prefer smaller ships and will have to see what the future has in stored for Royal as they seem to going all big and bold down the road.

Both lines offer a loyalty program that sync up to each other. If you are a certain level on one line, you will be a similar level on the other, without even having to had sail with the other line. Which is really nice if you decide to sail with them later.

The spa on Royal ships are much pushier then those on Celebrity. Both line will berate you after your treatment to buy products but Royal is the worse I've ever experience. On one Royal cruise after a $400 massage/facial, I was approached with an $800 sales pitch of creams and goo. It was awful and I declined more then three times and was still getting the hard sell.

Celebrity has more modest ships, with luxury decor and an upscale feel. They offer kid clubs and activities and on newer vessels, they offer S.T.E.M. experiences and a focus on hobbies, art and science programing. Its more upscale then Royal but starts at 3 years old vs 6 months. So keep that in mind if you babies and toddlers.

You'll see more of mature crowd onboard, those in their 40's-60's seem to be the prime target with Celebrity. The atmosphere is for relaxing and socializing. The entertainment is more for the adults, with live music, dancing and stage shows.

The food is stellar on Celebrity, especially in the specialty restaurants. The itineraries tend to be longer and more interesting, like the Guadalupe Islands, South America and the Panama Canal. You will have less deck parties and seemly less activities round the clock, as the atmosphere feels more relaxing then party-go-time as Royal can feel at times. Celebrity is starting to build larger and more upscale ships, not quite hitting the mega status of Royal.

If you have a family with kids and teens, or enjoy pool parties and exciting activities, Royal will be the way to go. If you are looking relaxation or romance, Celebrity wins.

When we travel with our “young adult children” ages 20-30, we travel with Royal, when we travel just the two of us, I prefer Celebrity or Princess. It’s all about the itinerary at that point. Check out the difference from Royal and Princess here.