Sea ViewsFrom President and COO, Adam Goldstein

Sea Views Blog with Adam Goldstein

Royal Caribbean’s New Smoking Policy

Guest Post By: Lisa Lutoff-Perlo Executive Vice President of Operations & Guest Port Experience

Hello everyone.  I’m excited to share a new policy that we are implementing across the Royal Caribbean International fleet. As a result of our continual and increasing guest feedback, market research and global trends we are updating our onboard smoking policy.

Under the new policy, smoking will not be permitted in staterooms and on stateroom balconies fleet wide on all ships. Additionally, all indoor public spaces will be smoke free, with the exception of the Casino, the Connoisseur Club on Freedom and Voyager Class ships, and one designated smoking venue on ships sailing from Chinese homeports.  In the Casino, there will be designated smoking and non-smoking areas. Additionally, Outdoor smoking areas will be designated on the starboard side of all ships; with the exception of Oasis-class ships that will allow smoking on the port side of the ships.

We realize smokers may be concerned that they will not be permitted to smoke on balconies.  I want smokers to know that we are increasing the number of areas on the exterior of the ships to allow guests to smoke because we want you to feel comfortable and welcome.  Our goal is to still enable you to smoke outdoors while trying to preserve a smoke free environment for our nonsmoking guests who book balcony staterooms and have continually told us that they don’t get to enjoy them if smokers are in close proximity and smoking on their balconies.

The indoor smoking areas allow tobacco cigarettes and electronic cigarettes. Cigars and pipe tobacco can be enjoyed in designated outdoor areas, or in the cigar club on the ships that offer this venue.  The new policy will take effect on all cruises departing on or after January 1, 2014.

We value all of our guests and we have a long history of responding to guest feedback.  We heard them loud and clear on this issue, and this is what led us to the new policy which balances the needs of both smokers and nonsmokers

I hope you agree that the new smoking policy addresses the needs and feedback of an increased number of nonsmokers sailing with us, while still valuing the needs of those cruisers looking for a comfortable and accessible smoking area.

Under the new policy, smoking will not be permitted in staterooms and on stateroom balconies fleet wide on all ships. Additionally, all indoor public spaces will be smoke free, with the exception of the Casino, the Connoisseur Club on Freedom and Voyager Class ships, and one designated smoking venue on ships sailing from Chinese homeports.  In the Casino, there will be designated smoking and non-smoking areas. Additionally, Outdoor smoking areas will be designated on the starboard side of all ships; with the exception of Oasis-class ships that will allow smoking on the port side of the ships.

174 responses to:
“Royal Caribbean’s New Smoking Policy”

  1. Sherry

    Thank you for listening – you’ve answered us Royally! This is a step in the right direction. Looking forward to fully enjoying our balcony on future cruises.

    • Terri Benson

      As a long time RCCL cruiser and Diamond + member, many thanks for making the policy change. I am in favor of many freedoms for travelers, but smoking is not one of them. It has been proven that smoking, including second hand smoke, causes cancer. I have lost relatives and close friends to emphysema and lung cancer and once you see how tragic this disease is, and knowing it could have been prevented, trust me, you will never want to go near a cigarette! My husband is allergic to smoke and still had to leave the casinos several times because he could not breathe. I hope the next step is to ban it completely from the Casinos as well! Thank you!!!

      • Mike

        As a Diamond member who doesn’t smoke. I think RCL needs to feel the financial impact of not listening to it’s customer base on a perfectly acceptable compromise to this. Designating a smoking section of balconies is a simple and a far more acceptable compromise. If I knew about this change prior to booking my two Dec 2013 cruises, I would have booked elsewhere. RCL consider this policy – 2 Diamond members until the policy is revisited.

      • Dr. James Oaks

        I thank that RCCL can provide for both Non Smokers and Smokes. Just make the Balchony at the end of the ship for smokers. I had a balcony room last week and the smoke from the stack was blowing back into my room. And I smoke. I will not cruise on RCCL again.

        • Thomas Huffer

          My wife has reactive airways from a chemical burn. Any kind of smoke
          will have her coughing, Time to start the inhalers. We have to go to the casino early because people can’t read the none smoking signs. They get mad when I direct them to the smoking area. I have no problem asking them to move or put there butt out. If they don’t I will track down a worker and make them do it. I wish they would stop smoking in the casino all together.

          • Randy OBryan

            They are not so concerned with the “non smokers” when it effects the money that the “smokers” spend in the casino.

          • Bern Sturtevant

            Couldn’t agree more with this comment. Obviously, RC is willing to offend a few non-smokers in order to sustain gambling revenues. The new policy is absurd. Anyone who ever smoked knows only public areas will not suffice. Non-smokers have become emboldened by politicians and businesses who cater to their sometimes absurd demands (such as e-cig restrictions). Well RC, you can have the lot of them, but you won’t have me anymore. And here’s the ironic part – I have not smoked in 30 years. I just can’t stand the pushy, dictatorial attitude.

        • Sandy

          Having booked my cruise in August for January I was totally unaware of the ban on balcony smoking. I have been cruising for over 30 years and have booked balconies since smoking in cabins was banned. Had I known about the ban in 2014 I certainly would not have booked the large group (10 rooms) for this trip with RCL. When asked at booking my travel agent wasn’t even clear on the new policy. Being the only smoker in the group I just let the reservations stand, but I should have downgraded my cabin since I will have to leave my room for every cigarette I smoke. I am in agreement with others on this forum that accommodations should be made at the rear of the ship for smokers who purchase balcony cabins. Goodbye RCL and I am taking my friends with me, to another line for our next trip. They are totally in agreement that we should all be able to enjoy our vacations.

          • Janet Turner

            As a loyal RCL customers at Diamond level I too booked my June 2014 holiday unaware of the smoking ban. In fact I still have not been informed of the ban, I only found out by accident. Unfortunately I fear it will be my last on RCL. I myself do not smoke, but have a disabled husband who does and tends to spend a lot of the holiday in the cabin and it was very easy for him to go onto the balcony for a smoke. Why is it not possible to make one side of the ship smoking? Also why are electronic cigarettes banned? There is no smell, no smoke etc.

          • Sandy

            Just returned from a 7 day cruise on Splendor of the Seas. Only 2 decks 5 & 11 allow smoking on the starboard side. On deck 5 there are only semi-upright chaises against the interior wall of the ship that are difficult to get out of. On deck 11 the pool deck, smokers are limited to a covered area out of the sun. The smoke collects here under roof and there are only 3 tiny tables and 4 upright chairs, the rest of the seating is semi upright and lounge chaises. There are numerous upright “stick tower” ashtrays with a tiny hole and a few canister ones that are rarely emptied. You have no area to smoke that is not under roof. There is no indoor bar that allows smoking-only half of the bar in the casino. I had a balcony I never used. I was miserable the 3 days at sea, and couldn’t wait to get off the ship. I never got to sit in the sun and enjoy myself on board. It is a shame that the Sky Bar on top of pool area doesn’t allow smoking, or the starboard side of deck 12 in a sunny area. We paid good money for a far from enjoyable 7 days. I also think the people commenting on the smoke filled balcony rooms are the ones who never shut their doors as instructed.

          • linda

            my husband and myself work hard.and we like to go away and sit on the balcony late at night and enjoy a cigarette and he likes his cigar. they need to make side of the for smokers and the other side for non smokers. we don’t just sit and smoke all day.we like and time on the water.

          • Dave & Carole H

            Totally agree with all the smokers that an area of balconies for SMOKERS should be accommodated. We too “were” 6x RCCL cruisers “until” the change in the policy came into effect & we too canceled a 10 day cruise we had previously booked with them, due to the change. Thus we have just returned from a 7 day Carnival rear ship balcony suite cruise, where smoking was allowed. WE had a fabulous cruise. Good-Bye RCCL as long as your policy stands we will cruise elsewhere or not at all.

  2. Linda

    BRAVO!!!! Thank you for listening to us!!! As a Diamond+… I’m so happy to be moving back to booking Balcony and above cabins so we can use the balcony. For the past few years we’ve dropped to cabins without balconies because of smokers next to us… Thank you for this change!!!

    • David

      I totally agree. As a smoker paying extra for a balcony room I am not getting dressed to go outside and walk the length
      of the ship to smoke. I was considering booking a trip this January with Royal and your “New and improved” policy
      just lost my business. Mr. Goldstein…you might want to rethink your policy and designate certain balcony sides of
      your ships for smoking. In the meanwhile I’ll take my business elswhere where I am welcome to smoke on the balcony
      I am paying for.

      • ruth wilson

        I agree with also was going to book a cruise in 2014 I have one on 11/1/2013 and it will be my last with RC

      • G&S

        Exactly right. Was ready to pull the trigger and noticed the change mostly by accident. I am sure other places will enjoy the money we smokers bring with us. My neighbors were planning to join because of the idea that they could smoke on their rented balcony. Done.

        • Terri Walz

          I was just getting ready to book my 5th cruise with RC (along with 2 other couples) for a sailing in January 2014. We all get balcony rooms, but I see no point in doing that with the new non-smoking policy on balconies. We will more than likely book with another cruise line that is still smoking friendly. I don’t understand why you can’t have one side of the ship balconies for smokers and one side for non-smokers. This total ban on balconies is stupid and will cost RC some loyal customers.

          • Tracy Greene

            We are diamond plus and cruise about 5 times a year we are also raising a next generation of cruisers having 6 kids and lots of grandchildren that will also drop RCCL! We have rights too! I pay just as much if not more than most and deserve to enjoy my vacation just as much as everyone else! Good bye RCCL, I hope use loose lots of other customers as well! You could make it fair for EVERYONE but having on side of the ship smoking! Your loss!

        • Iva

          I am grateful for RC’s new smoking policy. I find it extremely uncomfortable when someone near my balcony is smoking. I am amazed that anyone smokes anymore with all the health hazards it inevitably leads to.

          • heather

            amazed?????? how about being amazed that among all the health issues and knowledge we have today, that people still eat donuts, eat candy, don’t excercise, drink soda etc. and lead lazy, slothful overeating lifestyles!!!!!! Let the smokers smoke, and next time you reach for that junk food you eat, think about that! How would you like it if the cruise lines STOP offering junk food on their ships? Hey I am a smoker but I eat healthy, exercise etc. so let me smoke when on vacation relaxing! I am considerate enough to NOT do it around others. That’s why I always smoke outdoors even at home!

          • James

            I find it strange that E-cigarettes have also been banned as they offer non of the issues that normal cigarettes are linked with, nicotine is no more harmful than coffee so lets ban coffee on decks and cabins shall we.
            E-cigarettes have no smell no smoke and no health issues to the user or people in the proximity ……..madness !!!!
            This ban would have been brought on by the uneducated non smoking brigade !!!

      • Brett

        I agree! I am a diamond member. 32 cruises. I usually book suites and spend $15k+ per week in the casino. I would be willing to pay more for a smoking room. Banning it from balconies is simply discrimination. I understand that smokers are now the minority, but it is sad that RCCL has fallen for “gang mentality” by banning something that is legal from outside spaces where it causes no harm to anyone. I guess I’m rambling because the decision has been made. When the RCCL executives and shareholders wonder what happened to the revenue… look at the “air fanners” who fanned away your profits. What would happen if people now ganged up on alcohol? Bet you wouldn’t ban that! Bon voyage RCCL!

        • Weldon

          @Brett Excellent post. It is disingenuous, too, to say that smokers are not being barred from their balcony, but just barred from smoking on their balconies . This is like telling a vegetarian that his favorite restaurant has been turned into a steakhouse – but he’s still welcome!

        • Robert

          l agree with you. My wife and I have over 56 cruises with Royal. I have always been loyal to Royal, but unless they change the policy, we will be choosing a different brand. I know that there are people who complain about smoke being blown to them, but if there is any type of a breeze, they can not tell if the people in the next stateroom are smoking. I believe that Royal is doing a big disservice to there customers and will be loosing them to other cruise lines.

      • gloria pintado


      • Sue

        If I had known this new policy was going to take place for 2014, I would have NEVER booked a cruise with your line. let lone with a balcony. The only reason I got a balcony was for MY FREEDOM of choice. People out there think us smokers have the plague! Part of the AGREEMENT with your ship was that smoking was allowed on Balconies…so YOU are the one breaking the agreement that was given under the conditions in which I paid when I booked this cruise.

        • bonney

          We are long term cruisers and we too booked a cruise before this policy came into being. Very very disappointed with royal Caribbean I have to say.
          If we had known that smoking wasn’t allowed on the balcony and very restricted in other areas we would NEVER have booked.
          However this has helped us with making our next holiday choice, it certainly will not be with Royal Caribbean.
          I respect non smokers and am very considerate.
          Why royal Caribbean couldn’t compromise I have no idea.
          Why not have the rear balcony state rooms as smoking and the front as non smoking? Or one side of the ship smoking the other non smoking? That way there are happy customers all round.
          I feel for you royal as you will have lost a whole host of very loyal customers.

      • Susan

        I totally agree with you David. We just came back from an 11 night Caribbean cruise on RC. We also paid extra for a balcony and even though the “new and improved” policy hasn’t gone into effect yet, the cabin next to us complained, and ended up buying a can of Lysol and spraying it on our side. I also agree that one side of the ship should be designated for smokers, and they should put that on their reservation sheet. I also noticed that on deck 11, the smoking section has been cut down to a 1/4 of the side with only 2 tables, while the non smoking section has all of the other side, plus 3/4 of the smoking section and about 8 tables. I understand that non smokers have the right not to inhale the smoke, but then why did they stop the “no smoking” nights in the casino? May they lost too much money when they did that. Well, their going to lose more money if smokers aren’t allowed to smoke on the baloney which they paid extra for. This will be our last RC cruise for this reason only.

      • Jerri

        Like you we always booked balconies so that we could enjoy smoking without being ostracized to some remote part of the ship. We won’t pay that price to be made to feel like we are in steerage. Know why they still let smoking in the casino. On our last RCL cruise they had started banning smoking in the casino on formal night. The place was a ghost town. Looks like it is back to Carnival for us.

      • Judy castillo

        My husband and I are Emerald members of RCCL. The current policy of no smoking on private balconies caused us to cancel our 2014 cruise. This policy would make our cruise be most unenjoyable, therefore we have booked with another Cruise line and will continue to do so.

    • SPY


      I have travelled, I an sure, hundreds hours more than anybody here and I’ve never, EVER, seen smoke in open sea disturbing anybody, unless he is closer than 1 meter…

      One has to respect others health and envies but let’s not exagerate… (and think to the boat’s funnel… )

  3. Edward N. Martin

    As a new cruiser/smoker, I don’t see why one side of the ships balconies can’t be used by mostly smokers and the other side for non-smokers who are also on vacation. At the end of the day, when the money slows down and it will I believe the new policy will have to be re-looked at.

    • Kelly Ehrich

      I agree. RC needs to be hit in the pocketbook for poor decision making. I cancelled a two week cruise because of the new policy and will no longer refer friends and family. I am not going out of my room alone at night to smoke on the deck of the ship.

  4. Mary Mitchell Martin

    Reguarding the new smoking policy: I am a smoker who has always paid extra so I can enjoy a cigarette on my balcony. This new policy will spoil my vacation. I do not want to have to get completly dressed each time I want a smoke.

    I do not understand why one side of the ship could not be booked for smokers only and one side for the non smokers.

    It was not that long ago I read a post about why there were no totally smoke free cruises. It was stated that Royal could not fill up a ship with none smokers. So with this being said why does Royal want to risk losing my business.

  5. Sue C

    Thank-you for the new smoking policy. We have two cruises booked for January & February 2014 both with a balcony. Now
    we won’t have to worry about the smoke from our neighbors. My husband and I are both very pleased with this decision.
    Thanks again!!!

  6. Kim

    I do not smoke, but we always book a balcony cabin, so my sister can smoke. It is ridiculous that smokers have to get dressed and leave their rooms to smoke if they paid extra for a balcony cabin. I agree with the smokers on this site; why can’t one side of the ship be smoking on balconies and one side non smoking? I don’t exclusively cruise with RCI, but I’ve just started to book them most of the time. I will have to exclude them in the future because they could easily have made one side of the ship for smokers.

  7. Mike

    As a smoker who booked our next 2 cruises on RCCL specifically because smoking was permitted on the balconies, I am disappointed in this new policy. I am also very upset that it took so long to make this policy change known. If this new policy has been in place since July, why has it taken over a month for it to be announced? When I made my booking last month, the RCCL website still had the old smoking policy. In fact, when I called on Wednesday, the RCCL phone reps were still quoting the old policy. If I had known of this change in policy at the time, I would have booked elsewhere. I will most likely be cancelling my current bookings.

  8. James

    Fantastic!!! Nothing was dissapointing on our last cruise other than stepping onto our wonderful balcony to breathe in the fresh ocean air only to smell the foul stench of smoke from the next door balcony wafting over–or worse the next day when we discovered cig buttss on the floor of our balcony that had either blown over from next door or above…disgusting. This is recognition that health matters and yet gives smokers the option to smoke in designated areas so others can choose to avoid those areas–unlike our own rooms/balconys to which we cannot and should not have to run from.

    thanks for listening!!! well done!!

  9. Jeanne

    I am a non-smoker and hubby is smoker and never on the balcony am I bothered by smoke on the balcony yet I am very sensitive to it. We specifically spend more to be in a balcony so he can smoke. I am very disappointed in this decision and will have to rethink our relationship with RC…

    With at least 2 new ships being built I think a section called balcony/smoking should have been designated before a complete ban. Let’s see what it does to sales and stock…

    As a non-smoker, my observation: casino is the worst place on the ship to have to walk thru because of the smoking, and the pool deck is full on both sides of the ship (smoking and non-smoking) yet on the balcony the smoke is moving out into the air and not stagnant like the other areas.

  10. Kathryn

    Thank you so much for making this change. As a Diamond member I usually do book a balcony but too many times I have not been able to enjoy it due to roaming cig. smoke. I can’t tell you how happy this makes me. I just wished it was effective immediately, as I have a balcony for a 7 day in a week and a balcony for an 11 day in December. But, I am not complaining!! It is wonderful to know the starting in 2014 I will have a smoke free balcony. Thanks again!!!!

  11. Loyal to Royal

    Yay! Very excited about this! We have been on dozens of RC cruises. The one time we chose a balcony it was spoiled by our neighbor who was always out there smoking! Yuck! Looks like we can book a balcony with confidence now that it will be much more enjoyable! Thank you RC!!

  12. Ian Brady

    Would like to say that the new smoking policy is unacceptable! My family and friends will NO LONGER DO ANY CRUISES with Royal Caribbean since a fair smoking policy is not in place! There is a huge ship and to make all balcony rooms smoke free is outrageous! Make one side smoking and other non smoking! Again my Family and Friends will not do business with Royal Caribbean until this policy is fair to smokers and being able to enjoy a vacation and balcony with fair policies ! THIS WILL AFFECT YOUR BUSINESS IN A NEGATIVE MANNER!

  13. Arleen Greenwood

    I can’t tell you how delighted I am with your new Smoking Policy! Our family, 10 of us, are cruising with you in June.
    Thank you for making our trip that much better! Our last cruise, we couldn’t USE our balcony because of the smoke coming from the balcony next to us. Two in our family have asthma….we, all, appreciate you putting health concerns above everything!

  14. Judy M

    Thank you. Yet another reason to add to my list of “why I’m loyal to Royal”.

    While I recognize that smokers NEED their cigarette, it is unpleasant to those of us that do not smoke. I did have a sailing last spring where my niece and I chose to leave our balcony or close the door when we otherwise would have been enjoying the breeze and/or view because of a heavy smoke coming from a neighboring cabin’s balcony.

    My only concern is will people figure they’re less likely to get caught if they smoke IN the room? I’ve had a room that had a strong cigarette smell before too, that, clearly, would be much worse to bear.

  15. Tina DaBella

    I am a total non-smokier but I have many clients that smoke. There is no reason to not have a section or side of the ship (in front or back of the ship designated as smoking balcony cabins. Also, for the nonsmokers….a section in the casino means nothing, by 9am the entire room is fogged with smoke. And even just walking thru the casino is extremely smokey. The cruise lines could take 1 or 2 cabins of space and make a nonsmoking area for a casino.

    If a $250 fine is all it takes to air out and clean the cabin where someone is smoking against your pollicy, then why not just charge $250 more for a smoking cabin…..and again just have a section of cabins together that are designated smoking.

    It is wrong to charge someone $1200+ per person for a cabin and not allow them to smoke in their room. This is their relaxing vacation as well. So you have 5 or so designated places outside…..what if a person wants to just lounge around in their pjs and have a smoke,…what if a person is a bit seasick and doesn’t want to leave their cabin…..what if norovirus is going around the ship and client is quarantined by you? As well as now those smoking places outside will be overcome with smoke and it will infiltrate into the non-smoking part of the ship. Then what will you do?

    It is not as if you don’t have enough ships to make 1 or 2 ships completely non-smoking. Actually I would like to see a “smoking ship” with only the restaurants non-smoking to cater to smokers. You can give employees the option to choose to work on a smoking ship and I would guarantee the ship would be 100% sold out every week and the employees would make a great deal more in tips because they will have a ship full of happy relaxed guests.

    10 years ago smoking was more lenient and non-smokers still cruised….you have an exceptional cleaning system that worked great. Personally the obnoxious behavior of drunken people (as well as their falling off the side of the ship and suing the cruise lines) are more offensive than someone smoking on their balcony. Should we discontinue alcohol next?????

    I will most likely have less cruisers in 2014 and more all-inclusive resort vacationers because of this, and that is ok for me….better commission for the travel agents. But I feel bad for my smoking clients that enjoy cruising. But I will certainly recommend they try an all-inclusive resort to meet their travel needs and give them the vacation they can relax on.

  16. Cheryl

    Thank you, thank you, Royal Caribbean! We always book a balcony to enjoy being outside and taking in the ever changing view. However we have had times where we have had to come inside because of our neighbor’s smoke, especially if you are downwind. We applaud you!

  17. Lisa Langrell

    I am a non-smoker friendly smoker. We have always purchased the balcony-not just so I can smoke, but for our own private views. I realize that I may have non-smokers next to me or above so I have always introduced myself and advised I was a smoker but non-smoker friendly. In other words, I tell them I wont smoke when they are out on their balconies and maybe figure out when they usually like to hit the balcony (when they get up, etc.). My neighbors appreciate it. I do feel its unfair for them to inhale my nasty habit. That all being said, it seems a better compromise could be thought of. I realize that perhaps it might be difficult for RC to block off a large portion of rooms for smoking balconies but I would like to see RC take a stab at it-maybe to block 3 balconies on each floor from starting from the lowest balcony floor and block up vertically.I suspect that those balcony rooms would sell well and you wouldn’t lose your smoker population. Perhaps a test trial would be considered? I think using one side of the ship is excessive. I don’t think there are THAT many smokers.

  18. Rose Marie

    Love the new policy! Thank you for listening!

  19. Eric

    I have a cruise reservation booked for November, I am seriously thinking of canceling it now, I am a smoker who specifically pays extra so that I may have a balcony room where I can step outside and smoke. Like others have said, I do not want to have to get dressed and go to whatever smoking location you are relegating me to; I will not be booking with your cruise line again! Years ago when Marriott hotels went smoke free I stopped staying with them in favor of a chain that has smoking rooms. I see no reason why I am not going to do this for cruises. This policy alienates many people who spend money! You may want to look at the comments on your site and reconsider this policy or like one previous poster said make the balcony rooms on one side of the ship smoking.

    • James Holden

      Sharing the balcony space between smokers and non smokers alike seems to be a positive solution. Establishing times during the day when non smokers can expect to have a smoke free environment as well as times when smokers can enjoy watching the sea roll by and enjoy the full benefit of their balcony. In the old days the Captain of the vessel would announce “the smoking lamp is lit.” I wouldn’t suggest the captain do this today, but posted smoking hours in each balcony cabin/suite would be a solution. By doing this, the non smoking guests could go out on their balcony and expect a smoke-free experience. At the same time smokers could also utilize their balconies during the posted smoking times. This is a win-win for non-smokers and smokers alike. The application of this new policy is a win for the non smoker and a loss for the smokers.

      In light of the new policy, the use of an existing designated deck public smoking area or the cigar lounge on selected ships will be a crowded and uncomfortable experience for those of us who do smoke.

      In the meantime, I have shared my communications on this subject with my son and close family friends, some of which are Diamond Plus members and we will place our future travel on Royal Caribbean “on hold” until we hear further response on the subject. I am certain that this will cost Royal Caribbean thousands of dollars in lost revenue if the new smoking policy is applied carte blanche.

  20. Norm

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! It’s about time this new smoking policy was implemented. I don’t know how many times we’ve had to come back inside from our balcony because someone near us was smoking. There will still be many places on the ship for smokers to indulge. My only question is…….how are you going to enforce this policy? Are those of us who are non-smokers supposed to be the “smoking police”? If we’re on our balcony, and smell smoke, how are we supposed to know where it is coming from?

    • Weldon

      As a smoker I really don’t want my smoke to bother you or anyone else. In fact If my balcony is next to yours I will politely notify you that I am going to have a smoke in a few minutes. It only takes five or so mins for a smoker to smoke a cigarette. Surely this can be worked out between us so that we can both enjoy our balcony time. The reality of all this is no body spends 24 hours per day on a balcony. If you are on your balcony first I will wait until you go back inside. I am sure we can all be reasonable and extend each other that courtesy.

      • Louise

        Well said Weldon.

        I am not a smoker and have never been bothered by anyone smoking on a balcony.

        I am a diamond member and from my experience have been dumbfounded by people’s complaints.

        Where do you draw the line? I could say that other things bother me like listening to others using bad language, hearing loud noise, and drunkenness from the balconies because I have.

        I believe that is one of the many reasons why people want the balcony and as you said you are not out there 24hrs of the day.

  21. Mary Mitchell Martin

    I cannot help but wonder if Royal Caribbean is trying to down play this. I find it very hard to beleive that there are only 10 responses on such a hot topic as smoking. I hope all posts will be posted if they are not crude or lewd. I think we should be allowed to view all comments otherwise.

  22. Lori Andrews

    I wish you had designated half the ships’s balconies for smoking. I will be cancelling two booked cruises and two additional planned cruises in 2014 and will not be back after that. You didn’t take into consideration that your non-smoking customers were complaining while the smoking customers did not believe they needed to do so to defend their rights. On my last cruise, I smoked about 4 cigarettes a day on my balcony, two of those in the night. My wife shared my room and the smoking on the balcony doesn’t bother her.

  23. Donna DAlessandro

    We will have to rethink our cruise for May 2014. I agree one side for smokers and one side for non. It’s amazing that smoking is okay in an indoor casino, but not on an open-air balcony. Bad decision RC.

  24. Dan

    While we are not happy with the new rules, I will still cruise RCCL just most likely not as much. We don’t plan on going to other cruise lines because over the years you have spoiled us and we enjoyed cruising with you company.

    I do understand some of the reasons, and we really should quit but have that problem with it. I also understand the feedback you have received from the non-smokers and wish you had asked the question in a true survey to find out if it is the few or the many that are complaining and being bothered by smoking on the balconies.

    Thank you,

    p.s. go Phillies

  25. Ashley

    So disappointed with this new policy. RCCL is my favorite cruise line, however, this policy is very unfair and inconvenient. I was so excited to sail on the Explorer’s last cruise out of Bayonne, NJ but can honestly say I am considering booking with another line that allows people to smoke outside on the balcony they paid for. This was shortsighted Royal. I was loyal to Royal but now I’m not so sure. Please consider making balconies on one side of the ship smoking optional.

  26. Tristan

    We and our families will now have to consider our future cruises with Royal. We take one every year and to be told we can no longer smoke on our balcony that we do pay extra for is ridiculous. I just wonder now how many people because of this new policy will instead smoke in their rooms which in return will make matters worse for nonsmokers-cleaning fee or not. With this new policy we should just pay $250 and smoke both inside our rooms and on the balcony. What’s next people complaning that there are too many smokers on the decks in the smoking areas??

  27. jeanette festa

    i cant believe royal is doing this. i am a diamond plus member and have always reserved a balcony so i could smoke. its out in the open air. i dont fell i should leave my cabin to have a cigarette. have one side for smokers.. i have a cruise booked for next may that i may have to cancell

  28. Carol

    I have tried 4 times to post a comment on the new smoking ban and always get a sign that I’m typing to fast! What a joke, I’m 70 yrs. old for goss sake. I can hardly see the numbers(lol).As a DIAMOND member I’m very disappointed in RCCL. My husband and I have spent thousands of dollars on our cruises just so we could have a balcony to enjoy a cigarette in peace and quite.If I complain about the hundreds of kids running up and down the hallways will you ban kids under 20/ don’t think so. It’s time we find a different forum for spending our hard earned money.

    • Tristan

      Carol I agree, we spend thousands just for the privacy and quiet personal time on the balcony and no kidding, we never complain about people running or dragging chairs on the decks or the drunk people all over, we all go to have a great time and we do not criticize what others are doing or what makes them happy for their vacation!!! This is not right at all.

    • Jim T

      Carol I have had the same (typing to fast error) problem posting positive comments about the balcony ban. BTW I’m a D+ member and have also spent many thousands of dollars on RCI cruises and am so happy I can breath fresh air instead of smoke!

  29. James

    I just got the email from RC on 09/09/13 informing me of the new smoking policy. I am currently booked for a cruise on the Alure in April 2014. Thankfully I still have time to cancel and get my full deposit back. After seven cruises with RC I’m sorry to say that they have lost my business. I smoke and my wife does not, but we both agree its not fair to single out smokers. I’m sorry to hear that RC no longer welcome smokers.

  30. pete siegel

    horrible decision. I have sailed 3 times with you already this year but without the ability to smoke on my balcony that I pay good money for I will have no choice to chose your competitors. maybe instead of punishing your loyal guests you could spend more money on your ventilation issues ….. Your losing me. Huge Mistake

    • pete

      It’s ironic that Since adam did not even put up this post, Lisa did. He has completely stayed away from commenting. They know this is a hell storm. The real problem is.. If you cant smoke on your balcony. they public spaces will be come 100% more smokey since it will be the only place to smoke. So if you are trying to make it less smokey, you are doing exactly the opposite. I don’t even smoke but the people I travel with do. It would have seemed that their could have been a much more suitable compromise then the entire ban. It’s funny. they talk about the number of guest feedback about the smell of smoke. But the people that smoke didn’t know they needed to be constantly emailing royal saying “hey I want to smoke don’t take my rights away”. Should be interesting to see how this turns out. RCCL has absolutely the most amazing ships I have ever seen, but if I want to sail with my friends, I will have no choice but to chose a different cruise line.

  31. Kim

    This is outrageous. We spend so much money for balcony cabins not to be able to enjoy a smoke with morning coffee. I applaud nonsmokers, but I certainly don’t like to be treated like I have a contagious disease because I smoke.

    They should provide ashtrays that pull in the smoke and ashes. Let’s be fair here and offer a plausible compromise.

    I’m canceling my cruise.

  32. Boers Family

    What a shame!!!!……we just canceled our Med cruise to Greece 2014 because of this “enhancement” smoking policy. You could have been innovative and made a groundbreaking decision to divide the smokers and non-smokers on balconies on opposite sides of the ship instead of alienating us all and losing loyal customers.

  33. Tracy

    WOW Royal Caribbean, it seems the MAJORITY on this website is against the new policy. I think you got your majorities mixed up and better reconsider your decision. If anything is to be done, you should delay the policy to begin just before ANY new bookings open up. I personally am not a smoker but agree with the MAJORITY, the smokers, there is a better way to handle this policy. If you truly listen to your customers, you will revise your policy.

  34. JosieCat

    I recently took my first cruise in July and didn’t have a problem only smoking in the smoking areas. I have however booked a junior suite for my October cruise – JUST so I could have a balcony to smoke on – so I am very happy that this doesn’t take affect until 2014. Needless to say, I won’t be spending the money for a balcony again.

    Of course, once people can’t smoke on the balconies anymore, all the non smokers will start complaining about the smoking areas – as they will be far more crowded come 2014. They are already complaining about the casino. If you do change that policy, my business with you will be done. Why would I gamble in your casino where I can’t smoke – when I can go to Vegas and smoke.

    My complaint is with the e-cigs. You can’t smell them, so by not allowing people to use them on their balcony, they’ll just smoke them in their stateroom – and you will never know. Good luck controlling that!

  35. Patrick

    This is definitely the best news I have heard from RC in a very long time. Can you please tell me how the company intends on enforcing this policy? Since you cannot completely see into other peoples’ balconies, it wouldn’t be that difficult for someone smoking to not actually be seen simply by standing back from the rail and it would be difficult to prove that they actually were smoking, since nobody actually saw them. Are the balconies going to be modified with some sort of smoke detection system or will there be some kind of video surveillance system used to identify the balconies of offenders?

  36. Jim T

    I just wanted to post that I fully support no smoking on balcony’s. Great move RCI!

  37. Lucy

    Bad plan Royal. I have over 40 cruises with your cruise line and I’m done. The no balcony isn’t as bad as the fact that you are taking all smoking away inside also. Your ships are huge that is a crazy thing to do. The Oasis has a very nice mix of smoking and non smoking bars and lounges why can’t you leave it as is? As some have suggested make one side of the balconies smoking.
    I have already cancelled my January 2014 Oasis cruise which makes me sad but I’m very tired of being told where I can smoke like I’m a child.

  38. Carol

    My husband is disabled in an electric wheelchaur. He smokes a pipe and we always book a balcony so we don’t have to leave the room first thing in the morning or late in the evening. He is very considerate if others are around. Not at all happy about the new policy. Lead time should have been given so we would have the opportunity to make a decision if we wanted to book a balcony and cruise on royal Caribbean.

  39. Travis

    As a returning cruiser/non-smoker, I don’t see why one side of the ships balconies can’t be used by mostly smokers and the other side for non-smokers who are also on vacation. I do not smoke, but we book a balcony cabin, so my mom and her sister can smoke. It is ridiculous that they have to get dressed and leave our room to smoke if we pay extra for a balcony cabin. I do agree with all the smokers on this site; why can’t one side of the ship be smoking on balconies and one side non smoking. If RC is going to continue with their new smoking policy I believe there should be an updated drinking policy. I don’t think its right for people to drink and wander the ship and stumble around drunk and speaking profanity in front of kids. I don’t want my 8 year old niece who cruises with us to hear or witness that kind of behavior and I think other parents would agree with it too!!

  40. Rose Marie

    In response to those who have spent thousands of dollars booking balconies just so they can smoke, many of us have also spent that amount so we can enjoy the fresh air and privacy a balcony ofers. We look forward to smoke free cruising! We are also Diamond Plus and thrilled with the new policy. We don’t think they can justify making all the balconies on one side of the ship non-smoking – probably couldn’t fill them, and then who gets the “leftovers”?

  41. Klara

    I am very disappointed in the new smoking policy. Both smokers and non smokers use their hard earned money for a vacation and both sides should have an equally enjoyable vacation. I do not know how many people do or do not smoke on a cruise and I am sure RC and others do not know either. I believe a survey should have been done first and taken steps after that. Maybe not one whole side for smoking, but based on the survey, figure out how many balcony rooms could be designated for smokers. Use the upper decks since smoke rises and put them as smoking balcony rooms. I am wondering how many problems will start when the non smoking “police” see someone 2 inches outside of the smoking area smoking, (because it will probably be small and very few areas) that they start complaining & want something done. I am not a drinker and don’t like to be around wandering loud and obnoxious drunks and maybe the alcohol policy needs to be updated too! I truly hope you rethink this decision, and come up with a better solution, so everyone both smokers and non smokers can enjoy their vacations!

  42. susan haley

    I think your new smoking policy is totally unfair. After cruising with Royal Caribbean for the past 8 years I will now be looking at other cruise lines that allow smoking on balcony cabins. I have a cruise booked for April 2014 that I am now going to cancel. This is total discrimination against smokers.. We enjoy our cruises sitting on our balcony on an evening watching the sea and being able to enjoy a cigarette when you want one. No way I am going to pay the price of a balcony cabin and have to get dressed on an evening to go to a designated smoking area. Surely there could be specified smoking balcony cabins. Sorry I have done my research and will now be cruising with cruise lines that allow smoking on balconies. Loved cruising with Royal C Caribbean but its a goodbye from me.

  43. kathy e

    Sorry to say 9/5/13 will be our last cruise with rccl. My husband and I have always stayed in a balcony suite, royal, owners, grand. Smoking on the balcony seemed like a good solution to the no smoking in our cabin policy, the new policy is a bad one. We are very disappointed!

  44. Anthony

    I find this topic quite fascinating, especially as I was totally unaware of this new smoking policy due to take effect next year on the RCCL Cruise Ships. Either this new policy is not important enough for RCCL to make an announcement to all new cruise bookings (I’ve made two this year), or RCCL are down-playing this policy to take effect. I’d like to look at this issue in a more detailed way. Firstly, I should state that I no longer smoke Cigarettes, though I do smoke cigars from time to time.

    From a health point of view, I would presume that being a 20 a-day cigarette smoker in many parts of the USA is probably much healthier than being a non smoker in Hong Kong, where I currently live ! I don’t think anyone has displayed a problem focused on health with respect to this new smoking policy by RCCL on their Cruise Ships. So, this is about the rights of an individual to not being subjected to smoke or being forced to endure the smell of smoke whilst on a private balcony adjoining their stateroom (perhaps what has not been discussed is the actual issues of burning cigarettes/cigars not being properly extinguished in private areas).

    RCCL must have debated this issue internally for some time. They have made a decision. This decision has culminated in a policy to ban smoking on all stateroom balconies.

    People have a choice of course, and people will decide how to spend their own money in the future. This new smoking policy may indeed affect the number of bookings of balcony rooms aboard RCCL Cruise Ships. What we would see then is either a revision of the policy, or a discount on balcony rooms! WIth respect to the latter, I’ve never seen RCCL discount their rooms more than a small on board credit discount, so I don’t believe that RCCL will have any issues in fulling their cruise ships in the future. Their ships are the reason that I’m going to be a life cruiser. I once had a problem with their Casino Royale Administration Staff in the USA, who accused me of lying when they couldn’t trace a payment being made to me for credit (which they later realised that they hadn’t paid to me and didn’t even apologise). I don’t hold this against RCCL (only it’s Casino Administration Department). Their ships are immaculately kept, and their staff on board are amazing. It’s this reason that will keep me onboard, and I will simply adapt to their smoking policy should I wish to board their ships in the future.

    This smoking policy means that for people who wish to smoke (and in my case, should I wish to smoke a cigar), then I will have to find a place that is designated for that activity. This place will be kept separate from people who do not wish to be subjected to smoke. I have no problem with that. Others may argue that they have mobility issues or do not wish to change their attire in order to be presentable in order to enjoy a smoke in a designated area. This is the choice that RCCL have just laid down on those who wish to smoke.

    Most opinion for smoking is so well crafted in other responses. Many have voiced their displeasure at this policy and will choose not to cruise on RCCL ships again. One main area of growth in Cruising is in the Far East and there are still many smokers to be found here where I live. The new smoking policy initiated by RCCL will basically do away with having to handle any on board complaints and issues later, and reduce running maintenance costs at the same time. It’s clear that RCCL have calculated that they will continue to fill their staterooms.

    The main observation I would like to make is that RCCL is not a follower. Just look at their fleet of ships! I’m looking at the innovation that RCCL brings to cruising. They have made a policy to stop smoking on all balconies next year. What I think may happen is for other cruise lines to follow suit, and phase out smoking on their balconies as well. I think we have just seen a major step (taken by RCCL before the other cruise lines) to tackle smoking generally onboard their ships.

    I’m not saying I agree with this new policy. For my up coming October and December cruises, I’ll be sure to enjoy my time on the balcony smoking my favourite Cohiba cigars! Come January 2014, I’ll go to the cigar lounge like a good boy, because my time on RCCL Cruise Ships is more than whether I really need to have a cigar on the balcony.

    Thoughts from a lowly Platinum member…..

    • Sherry

      Anthony, while your comment is well thought out I just wanted to advise you that the current policy states that you are not allowed to smoke cigars on your balcony (this has been the policy for years). Cigar and pipe smoking is only allowed in cigar lounges or designated areas depending on the ship but not on blaconies.

  45. Ron

    Getting ready to book another cruise on Royal Caribbean…..until I saw the new smoking policy for next year. I applaud the travel agent who said that she would not be recommending RC and to steer her clients to an all inclusive island locations.
    This is exactly what I plan to do!

    Shame on you Royal Caribbean for not listening to all of your customers before making such a drastic decision. Instead you chose to listen to a group of people known as the whiners. Did you ever think to send a survey to all past and future bookings to get a fair and accurate opinion of travelers? You have email addresses for every entire traveler not to mention all the crown and anchor members.

    It’s bad enough that big brother is involved in your everyday life……now he’s going on vacation with you.

    I’m done with Royal Caribbean. Thanks for the memories.

    • Sandra

      I like your comment Ron. I am in the midst of planning a group family cruise and royal carribean is officially off the list. You said it exactly like I feel

  46. Gibson C.

    Hi Adam, hope everything’s fine.

    I understand the fact that non-smokers want to enjoy their balconies and I support the idea of the no-smoking policy. The only issue I have with this is that the policy should not kick in on 1 January 2014. It should only apply to those who made bookings after this announcement is made (For e.g. The non-smoking policy shall be in effect for all cruises booked after 1 January 2014). This should be a gradual thing and not a one-shot thing. This will affect many cruisers and definitely will have a huge impact on the South-East Asian market.

    Carnival has been deploying ships from its various brands to South-East Asia and this new updated policy will shift customers away from Royal Caribbean. Probably RCI doesn’t feel that the S.E.A. market is relatively important. Probably RCI feels that it has more than enough reserves to sustain losses. Probably RCI feels that the experience on its ships are good enough to retain smokers/cruisers. We wouldn’t know but this step is too sudden. It’s already September. It’s not like it’s March 2013 or something.

    An exception of sorts has to be implemented, at least for the first 6 months in 2014.

    Appreciate your favourable reply.


    • Lori

      I agree about the booking dates. I am happy that I booked our cruise on Oasis of the Seas for October 2013, and not after January 2014. I was not even aware of the new smoking ban until today. I would have hated to spend good money for a 7 day cruise and not enjoy smoking on my private balcony.

  47. Helga and Richard

    As diamond plus members we were very loyal to royal. But right now we know we are having our last cruise with RCCL this december. I can not understand this policy. Would it be just like at the Celebrity Reflection? A smoking area in the sun with no shade and 1 next to the dining area in the wind?????
    They do not ban children while there are a lot of complaints about them making so much noise and running up and down the hallwats and in every area of the ship. The do not ban drunk people even so there is a policy for that. No…… children and alcohol means money…… so the complaints about that are not taken seriously……When you read a lot of comments on cruise critics you can see the money is the most important..
    What do you think of the danger if people are going to smoke anyway and just throw their cigarettes over board. And do not say that won;t happen We have seen it happen time and time again on Celebrity. People smoking on their balconies hear the cabin steward come in and throw their burning buts away……A very unsafe thing.
    Too bad we loved cruising I even worked with RCCL in the Netherlands. Thank god there is Norwegian cruiselines where you can smoke on the balconies.

  48. Vicki

    Wow, This is the third comment I have left here and none display. I am upset about this policy due to e-cigs being lumped in with cigarettes. I have been using a PV (proper term for e-cig) for 3 years now. I go on cruises to sit on my balcony read my book and vape. There is on smoke, no fire, and the vapor is gone in a matter of seconds. I have never had anyone complain about the use of my PV. By forcing me into a smoking area you are subjecting me to the dangers of second hand smoke and endangering my health. The vapor I exhale is the same as the fog from your production shows fog machines. I am sorry to say that this diamond plus, suite booking couple will be sadly moving to a new cruise line as long as you unnecessarily endanger my health by forcing me into the smoking area.

  49. Karen kirchner

    I am very disappointed with your new smoking policy, I enjoy coffee and a cigarette on the balcony early in the morning while on a cruise. I am always careful of other guest on either side of our balcony and will not smoke if some one is on there balcony.i in all the cruises at 6:30 am when room service delivers our coffee I have never encountered any one else on their balconies. It’s the reason I pay more for a balcony the view at that time of the morning is very relaxing to me. I am very aware of my smoking in the casino and never smoke next to anyone without asking them first. The thought of getting fully dressed early in the morning to find a place with coffee to have a cigarette is very unsettling . I am reconsidering our next cruise as a diamond member I am very disappointed.

  50. Mr Farmer

    We always pay extra for a balcony and many times have had to keep the door shut because of smoke drifting in, which can ruin our holiday, especially as I am asthmatic. Please please ban it in the casino too so we can visit more than once a week when they have a no smoking evening. The casino is always packed on those evenings so I think it goes to show that more people would use it if it were smoke free!

    • Helen

      Oh the casino isn’t always packed anyway? Don’t give non-smokers that much credit! I’m cruising tomorrow and because the policy isn’t in effect until January 2014, I will be smoking whenever I want on my balcony and I dare anyone next to me to say anything. I’ll also smoke in my area of the casino and if you don’t want to smell it, then play far from me!
      As for the e-cig..totally ridiculous to lump them in with regular cigarettes. The cruise line would do better to be promoting e-cigs as a great alternative!! Heck..give them away for free in the casino!
      It just goes to show you that non-smokers are paranoid even about vapor..they see smoke and immediately think it’s lethal! Please do your research.

  51. Denise

    I guess that I will cancel my Feb 2014 sailing!

  52. Mr. Curtis

    Well, I guess I will stay with Carnival. The power of choice.

  53. Lori

    I booked our cruise a couple of months ago. First time on RCL and will be our last. Our cruise is in October 2013, on Oasis of the Seas. I will enjoy smoking on our outside ocean view balcony since the ban goes into effect 1/2014. I know now that all future cruises will be back with NCL.

  54. Tammy

    Mr. Goldstein….I’m very curious to know…how you think that giving us “extra” smoking spots around the ship will help. We to purchase balcony rooms for that purpose. Not sure if you have ‘tried” other ships yourself, however….we smokers are crowded into cramp spaces…we spend more time in these spaces than any where else on the ship…. so while you “think” that this makes our vacation enjoyable.. think again. I do believe by designating one side of the ships balconies to smokers …or to offer that $250 fee for smoking on there would be more beneficial to both sides….I am traveling with 3 other ladies….thats 4 total….3 smoke…..and this will be my 8th RC Cruise….I hope you listen to the many smokers that love your Cruise line and not just the non/smokers. Which I might add…..since you have not responed to anyone on that board…not sure you have …sad

  55. Matt mason

    Smoker for several years, not a single cigarette smoked in the house or hotel room, I pay for a balcony vs. ocean view to avoid the stares and lifted noses of the anti smokers on deck. It stinks I know, keep it outside! But I’ve rented that space it’s mine for the week! I would even support the starboard/port idea, or better yet no smoking on balconies in port, but really how much can my 5min indulgence a few times a day outside on my balcony at 20knots really bother people!
    What about even vs. odd hours for balcony smokers, what about smoking outside on any deck only after midship? So many other ways to handle the valid problem, rather than alienate people enjoying a legal activity. I also am alcoholic intolerant, I become very annoyed around sloppy drunks, but we’ll never ban that!

  56. Gregg

    While I understand the concerns of nonsmokers, smokers have rights too. They spend their hard earned money just like nonsmokers. If you want to keep all your loyal patrons happy, it would serve you well to rethink this policy as many of these posts have suggested. You would absolutely be at the top of the list for cruising if you designate either one side of the ship or certain balcony cabins for smoking. No one else in the industry is doing that and you would have the edge…and the advantage of repeat patrons, as well as wooing travelers from other cruise lines. Remember, there is a reason why RCCL is at the top of the cruise industry. Do you want to stay there?

    From the comments of the majority of these posts, you’ve already lost some serious $$$. And sounds like you’re loosing $$$ from patrons who were exclusive RCCL travelers. Can you afford to loose more??? You’ve pretty much just told them what they mean to you, NOTHING!

    Also, have you considered the safety and security issues that arises when someone decides to go out alone at night to smoke. This is just a bad idea. Please don’t become like some of the other cruise lines who are developing the “stay away” reputation. I would never let my wife go out alone to smoke at night, but remember, all women aren’t married or travel with male companions. It is your responsibility to ensure everyone’s safety when they board your ship, regardless of their smoking preference. Why add more liability chances? I’m just saying….

  57. Richard

    Your new policy just cost you our business. We were going to spend more with your company for an outside cabin but not now. I also was running a large of charges on the RC card for points. Not any longer. The relaxation of sitting on a balcony with coffee and a smoke will be with another cruise company.

  58. Greg F.

    I fail to see the logic of this new policy. Case in point:

    Smoking will be allowed on certain areas of the open deck. That smoke will drift up into balconies. What will RCCL do then?

    If you really believe in this new policy, why is smoking still allowed in the casino? Why not just go totally non-smoking? Oh wait, I forgot, another line tried that a few years ago and it didn’t work out well for them.

    Worst of all, you’re looking at people who smoke and saying; “Welcome aboard, give us all your money, and in turn, we’ll treat you like something we scraped off the bottom of our shoes.” Wonderful.

    I agree with one of the posters above. After 10 years and almost 20 cruises with Royal, it’s time to go back to NCL, where we’re treated the same as anyone else.

  59. Vicki

    Do they honestly believe if you put all the smokers outside on one side of the ship that the smoke is not going to drift into all the balconies on that side?

  60. Pierre Chartrand

    Stay “Loyal to Royal”. Huh! Why would we. Royal is not being loyal to us.

    “As a result of our continual and increasing guest feedback, market research and global trends we are updating our onboard smoking policy.”

    I thought Royal Caribbean was suppose to be unique.

    Guess I was wrong! I truly believe my last cruise of 2013 will be my last one ever with Royal.

    You no longer deserve my money.

    Thank you Mrs. Lisa Lutoff-Perlo and Adam Goldstein for this non-sense.

  61. Doug T

    Personally I agree with the new smoking policy, it would appear that some smokers do not realise how annoying it is for non smokers when guests smoke on balconies next to them. For me, well done Royal Caribbean.

  62. Paul

    A good start, now go the whole hog and make the casino smoke free as well, just like =X=

    • Claire Young

      Not surprising – pretty soon they will want the entire ship smoke free. It seems that people are never happy.

  63. Claire Young

    I am very disappointed in this new policy. I can totally understand and appreciate not smoking in the cabins. However, the balconies are a different story.
    I am always amazed when people say they had smoke blowing into their cabin. How is that possible, when you are not suppose to leave your cabin balcony door open???? These people are so concerned about being green, but they leave their doors open.. Isn’t that a waste?
    Thank goodness there are other vacation options. I really don’t want to travel from my cabin to the smoking lounge in my pjs.
    I enjoy a cocktail and a smoke on my balcony. We have always booked suites for just that purpose. We have NEVER smoked in our cabin. We have had non smokers in the cabins next to us and several times they have commented that they were unaware we were smokers, until we invited them over for a cocktail.

  64. Carol Lambert

    Well done and Thank you Royal Caribbean! Best news ever. I had almost thought of changing my upcoming grand suite reservation to another line which has non-smoking balconies already in place but now I do not have to. I have had too many balcony incidents with nasty smoke drifting to our balcony. It amazes me that smokers think the smoke should not bother the non-smokers. Fortunately I believe that the complaining smokers are really a small majority. Lets work on that casino.

    • Kristi Johnson

      Maybe you would be better suited to a spa vacation.. smoke free.

    • Alex

      This is a repeat of my yesterday’s message that was not published !!…why ???

      Upto now Oct.10 there are 70 smokers’ complaints against only 20 happy non-smokers” comments.
      Do you still feel 78 percent is really a “small majority” ???

  65. Vanessa Fountain-Allen

    I am getting ready to become a Diamond Member of RCCL on my next cruise (Explorer) in November. Both I and my Husband are smokers. I am very disappointed in your new policy and it will affect how often we sail Royal Caribbean (we normally go yearly) or find a cruiseline more accommodating or make other plans for our vacations. We completely understand and accept our inability to smoke indoors and in our stateroom, but we think its a bit much to tell me I can’t smoke on my balcony. I would prefer you have smoking balcony rooms and non-smoking, but to completely cut it off is unfair in my opinion. We love Royal Caribbean and we also love to cruise, but our vacation time is precious, and we must feel comfortable at all times as well.

  66. Tracy J Dean

    So sad to hear that Royal Caribbean doesn’t value all of it’s customers, just a select few. There are so many more options than to ban smoking on all balconies. I hope this decision does not lead to more layoffs of your hard working staff. Good luck on your gamble but as they say the house always wins. I’m not a smoker and have never been bothered by my neighbors who do smoke, of course and I can smell it but they are on vacation to. Some people are just not happy unless they have something to complain about.

  67. g Callander

    REALLY, you can smoke in a herd in designated areas but not a few single cigarettes on your balcony. Wait till someone gets attacked in their PJ’s wandering the desolate deck late at nite looking for the designated ashtray. RC needs to rethink this, making port or starboard side smoking balconies would have been a thought, and if there is no non smoking balconies left watch how many non smokers will still book in a smoking balcony area as apposed to how many smokers will book a non smoking balcony. Very bad policy thinking on this one, if I have to leave the safety of my balcony to have a recreational cigarette then I may as well stay home if I can’t enjoy my vacation why bother spending the bucks, I don’t like all the drunks but nobody is asking them to quit drinking except for the bar, they walk around selling drinks in the promenades all the time. Oh almost forgot, we are diamond members that need to find a smoking balcony, guess Rcc loses.

  68. Michael O'Grady

    Ready to book our next cruise and discovered, by accident, your change of policy. We are Diamond members and have spent a great deal of money with Royal Caribbean. Our change of policy as a consequence means we will not travel with Royal Caribbean again. Best of luck with your non smokers, who in my experience, spent very little money on your ships.

  69. G Callander

    Almost forgot, does RCCL intend to provide security after dark for the people, especially women that are forced to leave their balcony and venture alone onto a deck that they can smoke, you really need to think about the severe consequences that could happen in those areas late at night or in the early mornings when few cruisers are around to help someone that could run into a drunk out on those decks just because they were forced to leave the safety of their own balcony for a relaxing cigarette.

    • Jacky

      Totally upset to find out about the smoking ban, we booked this cruise and paid for the private balcony because I smoke…..why was this not pointed out at time of booking?…..was so looking forward to my first cruise and now not so sure I want to go……I am female and would feel unsafe having to go out early/late hours alone in the dark. Thank you for spoiling a holiday I was so excited about :(

  70. Daniel K. Voyles

    As a former smoker myself of 30+ years and now a none smoker for better than 10 years now, I have to agree with the smokers. There is no reason why RC can not have one end of the ship set aside for the smokers and the rest of the ship set up for the none smokers.

    This theory about second hand smoke is only a theory and not a proven fact. They have not proven that second hand smoke has done any harm to none smokers. There has not been one proven study done because they can not prove it. It is only theory and not fact.

    RC, why not make both sides happy and have smoking and none smoking areas. A ship that is out to sea with the sea breeze should not be a problem for this situation.

  71. Robin Kehler

    Well — as a non-smoker married to a smoker, with 2 cruises already booked for 2014. I am in a quandary as to what to do? I can’t imagine a cruise will force my husband to quit after 40 years, nor do I see him having to walk to a designated smoking area every time he wants to smoke. Seems to me this policy should grandfather in the folks who have already planned and paid for vacations with Royal Caribbean — one of the last cruise lines we could sail with due to the smoking policies.

    What advice do you offer me RC?

  72. george g

    Just completed third rcl cruise this year on freedom of the sea.Have spent over $100,000 on rcl over the last 10 years purchasing multiple cabins for family members.Will not sail again unless balcony smoking policy is changed.A unhappy diamond member.

  73. w gamble

    obviously not a lot of thought has been given to this subject by the heirarcy at rcc, being a diamond member and paying higher rates for a balcony cabin so I can have a smoke with my coffee in the morning is one reason why I book a balcony [and the balcony is sprayed before and after smoking to try and appease neighbours who don't smoke]
    surely balconies on one side of the ship could be allocated to those of us who enjoy a smoke, the world is full enough of anti smokers without rcc dancing to their tune also.

    Will DEFINATELY think twice before booking another rcc cruise.

  74. Michael

    I am a non smoker, but some of my family members are smokers. Every RC Cruise we have been on we have booked a Balcony suite or Junior suite so my Mother can smoke in the morning with her coffee and dressing gown and relax on her holiday, without having to get completely dressed and walk the length of the ship to go up and outside for a smoke and then back down again. I’m not sure if you have noticed, but the balcony is open air and in the middle of the ocean.

    I can’t stand smokey places – like the Casino. So your policy just doesn’t make sense, you ban smoking in an area that is private and completely open air in the middle of the ocean, but you don’t ban smoking, and actually allow it in a small, completely inclosed area (the casino) which during sometimes the smell travels throughout the ship.

    Also add to the fact that people are allowed go to the outside decks on one side of the ship to smoke, so why can’t balconies on that side of the ship be allowed to smoke? Surly if you claim that smoke from balconies effects other balconies, won’t they still be effected by the smoking decks on that side?

    We have booked a Transatlantic cruise for 2014, currently with 20 people going from our family, we have all booked Balcony or Suites simply because different members of the family would like to relax on the balcony and smoke.

    Since we found out about this policy we are now looking at alternatives on other cruise lines. Is this going to change at all? To at least one side of the ship?

  75. Marsha Hyndman

    As an Emerald member cruisers, 2 more booked with RCCL, along with 35 other cruises I can say I am not happy about the new smoking policy. I agreed with the inside smoking ban. I was surprised the cruise lines allowed that as long as they did. But we should be able to smoke outside.

    If we can’t smoke on our balconies, or any indoor venue, then maybe smoking in the casino should be banned also. That would save me a ton of money. But we know the cruise ships will never ban smoking in the casinos. It wouldn’t be a profitable decision. I wonder if the no smoking on balconies will be profitable. I think all cruise ships need to remember that the smokers are the major players in those casinos. You don’t want us on the ship, we’ll find a different casino to spend our money at.

  76. Ron Gordon

    Thank you for the new policy on smoking. Frankly, I really don’t see how limiting smoking on the balconies is such a big deal. Those people just need to go one step further! :)

  77. Sharon

    I have been on four different cruise lines. I was looking into making reservations for our family of 11 with RCCL for 2014 because we have never been on one this line. I’m an ex-smoker however I indulge the pleasure of the E-cig as well as 4 other family members. My husband still is a smoker and I would book a balcony room just so he could smoke. I understand the stench of cigarette smoke however to ban smoking from all balconies is discrimination. We are all respectful E-cig and cigarette smokers but RCCL will not be getting our business. RCCL could allot all balconies off the back of the ship for smokers however that probably wouldn’t be enough to handle the population of baby boomers that smoke and have plenty of cash to have fun. I will be booking with Carnival from here out or until something changes. I think this ban will harm sales for RCCL, time will tell.

  78. John

    I am an ex-smoker who quit 10 years ago after smoking for 30+ years. I quit because of health and the ever rising cost of cigarettes. I applaud all the cruise lines that are restricting smoking. If I wanted to breath in smoke I’d buy my own cigarettes. Instead of complaining about the smoking restrictions, which are spreading to more and more cruise lines, why not quit smoking and extend your lives and have more money to take cruises with? Just a thought.

  79. Donna Green

    Thank you so much RC for limiting smoking on your ships!! Perhaps now I can cruise and enjoy clean air on my balcony and actually go to a nightclub and dance without having to inhale someone else’s smoke! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! And good by Carnival. :-)

  80. Vicki

    Instead of making one side or the other smoking, how about making the aft smoking? You already get the smoke from the ship back there, and the wind blows it behind the ship .

  81. Susan

    I’m booked on the Explorer 12/2/13 in a grand suite, which I chose because of the large balcony I can smoke on. My husband and I have never cruised with any other cruise line because we have always been very happy with RC. However; this trip will be bittersweet now that I know it will be our last one with Royal Caribbean. We were even planning on booking next years trip on board to take advantage of the savings. Bummer!

  82. Jared

    It’s a very sad day for us and quite upsetting as we discoverd the new and improved smoking policy today as we were looking to book our 4th RCL Cruise. When talking with friends and co-workers about vacations we have taken we have always raved about RCL compared to the competition.Our last trip we spent $$$$$ enjoying an amazing week touring the southern caribbean and our best cruise yet. Unfortunately it will have been our last on RCL too as we have always booked a balcony for the privacy of relaxing ourside our room with the door closed to enjoy a cigerette in the evening or late at night or with that wake-up cup of coffee in the morning.We would urge RCL to reconsider as they see the numbers in 2014 drop as we can’t and won’t be back until we can enjoy this option again on the balcony we have equally paid for too.Maybe designate one side of the ship from mid-ship back open to smoking on the balcony.

  83. Frankie

    I specifically contacted RCL back in Aug 2013, prior to booking a Mar 2014 cruise, balcony cabin. I was given the explicit understanding that smoking would still be permitted on an outward facing balcony. It is with much surprise, dismay and angst in how I found out about this ban and how it is being implemented. I totally support a no-smoking ban inside cabins/ship. However, to now include the ban on an already booked reservation and outward facing cabin (open air!) is discriminatory and unacceptable. I will be contacting my travel agent asap to cancel this cruise and book with a more customer- friendly and accommodating cruise line. Unfortunately I will not be experiencing an RCL cruise for the first time and will definitely look elsewhere when booking any future cruises.

  84. Keith

    Thank you RC for this new policy. I am a non-smoker, but grew up with parents who did smoke and I hated the smell. My family and I have never booked a balcony for this reason. I don’t want to go out and smell some elses smoke. To those who have written that they let their neighbors know when they are going to smoke…thank you. But, there are so many more who don’t do that and more than likely don’t care if the smoke bothers others or not.

    On the subject of making part of one side of the ship for smokers….what about the people who just happen to be near that part of the ship? They will still have to endure the smell. I live in a state where smoking is not allowed in any restaurants. Sure those establishments may have taken a few loses early on, but they are now thriving…and yes, smokers still frequent those places even though they can’t smoke while there. This will be the same with RC. This policy is not going to be something that breaks this company as I feel that there are probably many more non-smokers who book as do smokers.

    • Alex

      What you overlook, Keith, is that as a smoker eating in a non-smoking restaurant for 2-3 hours is not quite the same as
      being on a practically non-smoking ship during 2 consecutive cruises total 14 days in à row….

  85. Iro

    Well that certainly changes my plans of booking with the RC in February. If you won’t respect my ”smoker’s money” to allow smoking on the balcony I pay extra for, you can kiss my business goodbye. Adios.

  86. Chits Yano

    We will be booking elsewhere 18 Cruises and still going.

  87. K

    I have a cruise booked for Feb. 2014. Had I known this new policy were going to be put in place, I never would have booked this cruise. We are going with a party of 14. Most of which booked balcony rooms. Why pay the extra if you cannot have all the benefits of it. E-cigs!!! Come on. There is no smoke and nothing is burning. I have smelled perfume and cologne that are gagging. This will be my last one. Sorry RC. You blew this one.

  88. John

    Ridiculous Policy. Set aside a few balconies for smokers. Many enjoy smoking a pipe or a good cigar. I’ve been on three RC cruises. No more.

  89. Keith Sibick

    It’s a shame that Royal Caribbean has yielded to the vocal minority of non-smokers who complain. One of my greatest satisfactions on my many Royal Caribbean cruises was smoking a cigar while relaxing on my balcony. Now that is not possible. When smoking outdoors becomes unacceptable, we truly have become an intolerant world (or at least a certain segment of people have, along with the corporate lemmings who bow to them). I fully understand the significant restrictions on smoking cigars inside the ships. In a closed environment such as a cruise ship, not only does the odor travel across the deck, but it remains from cruise to cruise. Unfortunately, the non-smoking crowd is not so understanding nor compromising, and Royal Caribbean has bowed to the politically correct pressure. As much as it pains me – for my family and I have frequently cruised both the Caribbean and Mediterranean onboard your ships. I am now forced to take my vacation dollars elsewhere.

  90. t.g.

    I booked my honeymoon specifically with RC because of the balcony smoking policy. Now it is too late to cancel. I don’t get why me smoking on a balcony that I paid for is bothering others. My cruise will be the last time I sail RC!

  91. Chrizzy

    Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!

    We will definitely be sailing with Royal Caribbean again.

  92. Paula

    We will no longer be cruising on Royal Caribbean. We have taken many cruises with many diffrent cruise lines. We liked Royal Caribbean the best. We have taken many with RCCL. Now that they have only listened to one side of the smoking issue, we will no longer cruise with Royal Caribbean. Now that you have sided with non smokers as to no smoking on balconies. I don’t believe that there will be more options on the outdoor deck. There is usually one little area on one side of the ship that is always packed. Look over on the opposite side of the ship where it is non smoking. It is empty! So now that there will supposedly be more smoking areas, the non smokers will start complaining that those areas are too smokey! The casino has smoking usually at the casino bar about 4 seats of the bar..but is overflowing with people wanting to smoke. Can you imagine how crowded these areas are going to be now that you listened to only one side. I don’t understand why one side of the ship cannot be smoking and one side non. Trust that the smoking side will be full. It will be more pleasant for everyone including smokers! Not having to deal with rude nasty comments from Non Smokers. I do believe that RCCL will see the decline in revenue and hopefully change their policy! Until then we will cruise in suites on Carnival!

  93. Trev

    As a returning non-smoker, I do not agree with your new smoking policy. I agree with the smokers that there could have been a better solution. I think it would be less smoky to let the smokers smoke on their balconies rather than having them all in the casino or in the smoking areas. Not all of the smokers will want to have to get dressed early in the morning or late at night to go smoke. I feel you could have set aside some balconies on one side for the smokers.

  94. Bill

    My wife and I decided last night to grab an owners suite for a last minute Feb cruise, knowing that based on our previous cruises smoking on the private balcony was OK. I don’t smoke but my wife does. Imagine my surprise and disappointment to see both the old and new smoking policy included in our documentation with the new ban in 2014! All of our previous cruises have been with suites because of the ability to have a smoke on the balcony. If we had known prior to signing up for this cruise we would have done something else. Guess this will be our last RCI cruise. Oh well good luck with your new policy.

  95. Suzy

    Do not agree with the not allowing smokers to smoke on their balconies. NO, I do not smoke but many that I know do. We are in the process of booking a cruise with 24 people, and I send an email out to get everyone’s thought and they think I need to find another cruise line and majority rules. So we will not be cruising in 2015 with RCCL.

  96. Sheri

    While I understand some of the reasoning for this policy change, couldnt at least one floor, high up, on one side of ships be designated as smoking?? Guests who do smoke do not want to leave the comfort of the cabin that they have ALSO paid for in order to go elsewhere to smoke. Come on!! I am sure all smokers know the health risks, just like drinkers know how alcohol could affect them or the people close to them or overweight people know how bad food choices can affect them…..on and on. I do not drink but have watched the affects of drinking on many people and frankly I dont care to be put in harms way because of them so lets ban all alcohol sales on ships also so I can enjoy myself. And what about unruly children that are loud and obnoxious? The list of complaints people have is seemingly endless! I dont really think that will happen, nor do I really think that it should but just making a point here. Pretty soon we will have to board a ship and sit with our hands folded and shut up. It would be interesting to keep track of the customer complaints against this smoking policy but im sure like so many other things, the board has spoken and no effort will be made to adjust the policy back to smoking on the balcony WE paid to use!!

  97. Sheri

    Having cruised with RCCL over 50 times, I am dismayed at this
    no smoking on balconies policy. We have always booked suites so we could wake up and order coffee and sit on our private
    balcony and I could have a cigarette. My husband doesnt smoke but also doesnt agree with this new policy. We booked a cruise for this yr before we realized the policy change. We probably will end our constant support of RCCL because of this silly policy! Oh and like one other respondent said, we also have spent well over 100,000.00 with RCCL. Please reconsider this policy or tweek it to one side of ship has smoking balconies available. I just got off a Disney cruise and they had instituted this same policy long after we had booked and pd for our cruise. We will never be cruising with them again. I even wrote to RCCL saying I was glad you didnt have this same no balcony smoking policy and whomever responded to my email failed to let me know that you did indeed have it in place!
    Please RCCL, reconsider this policy. Its way over the top!! In a bad way!
    Sign me….a very disappointed diamond plus member!

  98. laurence connely

    as a diamond I will not be booking on rccl again. We have been on celeberty for many years and when you did the same smoking policy on that line gave never been back. You have pandered to the political correct people and ignored a large coustomer base that I hope causes you financial hardships.

  99. Jeff

    Thank you! You just made a lifelong customer out of me, along with my huge extended family. I have booked on cruiselines with my family of 10 and paid for balconies, only to smell that awful cigarette/cigar smoke when I try to leave my room. My wife is very allergic. Don’t smokers know that their smoke does NOT stay on just on their balcony???? Absolutely rude when others who don’t smoke are trying to enjoy the tropical air outside, and can’t because of another person’s habit.

    Again, I will be cruising RC in the future. Thanks again!!!

  100. Catherine

    Having booked a balcony cabin for April, I was shocked to see a comment on cruise critic about a ban on balcony smoking from January 2014, I called my travel agent who was unaware of any such policy, both myself and my friend are diamond members and although my friend does not smoke she finds it hard to understand why there would be a ban on an outdoor area (balconies are outdoors), RCI state that this policy is being implemented due to guest feedback, is it not obvious that smokers would not complain about other smokers, so naturally all complaints would come from non smokers, why was there no proper research done? emails could have been sent out asking for opinions before bringing in this policy, maybe if they had done this they may have reconsidered this complete ban. It seems to me that if this thread is anything to go by that they are going to lose a lot of money and a lot of their very loyal cruisers are going to jump ship. The most ridiculous part of this ban is no smoking of e-cigarettes, this is unbelievable, a person can smoke an e-cigarette on a plane but not on a ship balcony, go figure. Our balance is due in three weeks and I am currently researching other ships and considering cancelling with but if I decide to go ahead with our April cruise it will sadly, be my last on RCI unless they reconsider the balcony ban.
    Mr Goldstein, if you bother to read this thread then you will see that the majority of replies, even from non smokers, are unhappy with this ban and therefore, if you try to do your best to keep your customers happy, a rethink is needed.

  101. Nola

    Glad I found out about this new policy before booking my next cruise. RC has now been eliminated from consideration.
    Carnival tried this policy out on a few of their ships and quickly changed their mind when they could not book the ships.
    Hopefully RC will soon see they made a mistake and will reverse this.
    I vape e-cigs after smoking for 40 years, I have finally almost quit regular cigs. From a pack a day to a pack a week.
    I always book a balcony so that I am able to smoke my two cigs in the morning with my coffee and then vape the rest of the day.
    I avoid smoking areas because they make me crave cigarettes.
    I have no problem with people smoking on balconies.
    I have no desire to leave my cabin every morning in order to partake of my bad habit.
    I spend much time on my balcony as I cruise to relax.
    And the smart thing for RC to do would be to have one side of the ship with balconies for smokers and the other side for non smokers.
    Or to pick a few of their ships that would be totally non smoking.
    Until this policy is changed I will not be cruising on RC.

  102. Jay

    Just cancelled our booking for our dream cruise this year due to RC new smoking policy! Would have been our first cruise we had been on and we were so looking forward to it, we’ve been saving for ages for it but we want a HOLIDAY with freedom,too much money to spend when we can’t relax on our own balcony and have an odd ciggarette !

  103. Stephanie

    if you want to ban smoking on balconies, fine. But do it fairly. I paid for my cruise on 9/2and was told I could smoke on my balcony. On 9/5, I can’t smoke. To me that is breach of contract. They should have given a longer lead time so people could choose a different vacation. Take smoking out of it. Say you bought something on day a and paid them $3000. And you were told for that you get to do a b and c. A is very important to you. on day b they say oh you still have to do this for $3000 but you can’t do a. That would not fly for anyone if you are honest with yourself.

  104. Anonymous

    Last year we were planning to book our first cruise with Royal Carribean for 2014. We only book suites as we are smokers and as someone mentioned to have non-smokers look at you in disgust is the reason we choose to smoke on our balcony. Also the lack of comfort and space in a suitable bar area is another reason we smoke on the balcony. Unfortunately you missed out on our business and the promise to “more improved” smoking areas on the ship will not persuade me to shower, get dressed, do my hair and makeup just to have a cigarette in the morning. Yes, I understand non-smokers have complained and complained until they got what they wanted. And I believe that smokers have not complained at the time when certain areas on the ship were made non-smoking as we understand. But now it has come to a stage where enough is enough and we now need to stand up for our rights too.

  105. Ken

    I get the no smoking in the rooms, but this no smoking anywhere nonsense is just one more reason not to waste my money on a cruise.

  106. Ali

    I must agree with the posts that the compromise and policy is biased. I join the ranks of those who will NOT be booking with Royal Caribbean again. As a past guest and of a large group, I set out to book a balcony stateroom and discovered the new policy and immediately booked with Princess. Shame.

  107. Greg Gosbee

    I love how many of the pro-smoking comments are so very similar in sentence structure and content. I’m sure it’s coincidence and not the same author using a different name. LOL. I like this new policy and hope they totally rid the casino of smoke soon as well. There’s no acceptable reason for smoking in any area where another person is forced to breath the toxic fumes, be it balcony, casino, bar, or pool area.

  108. Lynda

    Just found out about your new policy, having googled non-smoking cruises. I swore off cruises two years ago after a bad balcony experience on Carnival. I wrote to them and they didn’t have the decency to reply. We had a great cruise on RC 3 years ago, so am now booking again for next month. Thank you so much. And as for the loss of revenue threats from smokers who are too weak to quit, they predicted the coffee shops would lose money when they went smoke-free, but they actually had more business from all those who didn’t want to compromise their health from secondhand smoke. Of course we will still have to endure the foul stench of the smokers clothing after they leave the designated areas and return to civilization. Oh and BTW, maybe the reason non smokers spend less in the casino is because they can’t breathe in there.

  109. Allison

    I’m an ex smoker with no grudges against those who to choose to smoke. But I think the most obvious point here is that nearly all the companies are going to introduce bans on balcony smoking….not to annoy smokers but for safety. It isn’t being banned ALL OVER the ship. We sat around the adult pool last year and watched smokers using the electronic cigarettes because they couldn’t be bothered to walk the 50ft to the smoking area. They look as if they are playing piccolos! If as a smoker, you cannot be bothered to walk to an area so you can have one, then there isn’t really a great deal I can say. If you are prepared to cancel a holiday on the basis of a cigarette then like myself..maybe it’s time to realise smoking is taking over your life!

  110. Susan R

    I am so glad I read this. I am a returning Royal Crown and Anchor member and my husband just asked if I wanted to cruise or go to an Island. I told him cruise. He happened to see this and so I have decided to head to the Island. It’s a shame that you could not designate a portion of the balcony rooms to smokers. We have always booked the balcony room for that reason The trip we book is always $8000.00 plus we are at the spa daily. We always spend $2000.00 in just the spa. With this said you have just lost some very loyal customers. Just look up our account. However, the Islands I am certain do thank you.


  111. Jessica

    I would have NEVER booked our April cruise on Freedom if I had known of this new policy. This will be my 4th cruise with Royal and my last cruise with Royal I considered cancelling when this whole virus infecting 600 people happened, but staying loyal to Royal and loving cruising in our Jr Suite, I decided to keep the reservation instead of going on an inclusive. I even paid big bucks to have my honeymoon on the Qasis, Junior Ste style, of course. Now one of my reasons for having a balcony is having a smoke on the balcony, with some coffee or a cocktail, is being taken away. Next time we will give Carnival a try. Im sure alot of your smoking clinetele will migrate over there now.

    I am upset about this new policy. I wish I hadn’t paid the cruise off, for I would cancel the trip right now.

  112. Nathalie

    I agree with most of the people on this page. We reserved our 2nd cruise with RCL and did not know about the non smoking policies on the balconies.
    I thik that it is become ridiculous , we are OUTSIDE,
    this is your choice but for my husband and me this is the last cruise with royal caribbean and do the next ones with Carnival.
    Wish you change your mind before the cruise we have already book for july.

  113. John T.

    We just did our 4th (including Oasis and Freedom in last 2 years) and last cruise with RC. We have always booked a balcony as my wife smokes. She smokes a couple of cigarettes and has always enjoyed her coffee and a cigarette in the morning. In that neither I nor our 2 kids smoke, my wife tries to be considerate to all. Unfortunately with this change, we will never book another cruise with RC again which is too bad as I am currently looking at a cruise for this summer and we have always enjoyed RC. Oh well.

  114. Ivor ellis

    “Excited to share your new smoking policy ” are you Mr Goldstein, what you’ve realy succeded in doing is losing loyal , long cruising customers , I do not smoke but banning a person from an activity on a outside part of a ship,( a balcony) where it does no one any harm or inconvinence is just downright, nasty bullying,. ” Talk about customer realations” RC should be ashamed . Bye, Bye RC.

    Ivor G

  115. Patrick Schwab

    Terrible policy decision RC; horrified you find it “exciting” Adam. Won’t be cruising with you again until the policy is revised.

  116. Colleen Castronova

    I booked balconies for my family ONLY so they would be able to smoke. I feel totally ripped off…as I would not have done a cruise…and may as well have had MUCH CHEAPER inner cabins. I feel the only fair way to handle the situation at this point would be the rule applying to people booking a cruise AFTER the new ruling! We will never utilize this cruise line again

  117. Norm

    Was just about to book a cruise.. Had been on Navigator Of The Seas ..Great ship…I had a state room with balcony enjoyed my evening cigar on that balcony.. No more smoking on balcony? Are you kidding 4k for a cruise..state room with balcony in the middle of the ocean and I can’t get a puff.. Looks like it was my last cruise on Royal Caribbean.. Other cruise lines don’t have these restrictions..How sad…But oh well..Their game their rules.. Ill play elsewhere..Thanks for the memories..

  118. S Ru

    Well Done on new policy. Thankfully there are less places where smoking is allowed. Just like airlines, eventually all cruises will be smoke free. The sooner the better. Those comments about going to Carnival is like saying no longer will I shop at Wholefoods but now will go to Walmart. Almost all the top cruise lines ban smoking on balconies and most public areas. Love Celebrity and RCI and will enjoy not holding my breath when going through smoke filled areas. Please, please, please ban smoking in the casino on RCI.

  119. Ramona Tyuma

    How very disappointing in a cruise line where customer service was supposed to be number one. My husband and I have 56 cruises on Royal Caribbean and there will not be a 57th. The smoking issue could be easily settled with designated smoking rooms with balconies. Certain decks and certain rooms. Those that smoke could request those rooms and those that don’t would be away. The folks that don’t care could go anywhere. Why does this have to be so difficult? The solution is easy. It’s been done everywhere. My husband and I spend a significant amount of money with Royal what a shame you have no respect for us.

  120. Kelly Hazzard

    Dear Adam,

    First let me state that I am a Diamond member of the Crown and Anchor Society and have enjoyed the many cruises I have taken on RCCL.
    Having said that, I am extremely dissapointed by the new restrictions on smoking on your balcony. Couldn’t you have tried to satisfy all concerned by maybe booking smokers on AFT balconies or limited smoking on a balcony only when the ship is not in port?
    Smoking is still legal as far as I know. Yes it might smell offensive to some but so do the strong perfumes and colognes that people wear.
    And if the reason is health related, why don’t we stop obeaste people from endulging in fatty foods like Ice Cream or sweets?
    It just seems that once again smokers are being singled out. STOP ALREADY with the attacks on peoples personal choices.
    Not sure yet what I am going to do but there are other cruise lines that permit smoking or I can start the all inclusive thing.
    Please reconsider this policy.

    Thank You.

  121. Markus

    What a shame!
    No one informed us prior to our booking or afterwards about the new policy. My wife and me are both smokers and have always paid more for the balcony and enjoyed smoking on the balcony. In fact we had just 2 or 3 cigarettes per day on the balcony, since we spend the most of the day ashore or on the deck.
    It’s just ridiculous how everybody wants to tell someone what they may do and what not. Why banning it completely from all balconies and not just make two sections? I mean we’re talking here about outdoor and not a closed room!
    For the health fanatics comments: I knew several people who died of cancer and have never smoked a single cigarette or cigar! Which means either you get it or not…
    Additionally i bet that the most part of the people which are strictly against smoking live in a city where smog is everywhere.
    But that is probably a totally different case.

    This certainly pushes us in changing the cruiseline for the next time, if the policy will not be changed again

  122. Debbie

    Wonderful new policy. Thank you RCCL for caring about our health. It is even better that so many smokers will be taking their business elsewhere. It may drive prices down and will reduce the amount the number of stinky people walking around the ship. I couldn’t be happier.

  123. Susie

    Our family of four are Diamond members. Due to the smoking on balconies ban and an awful Member Cruise to the Panama Canal in 2013, we are definitely Norwegians (NCL) now.

  124. Jo Ann Norman

    Great news!! Just spent 5 days on another line, and my balcony smelled like a forest fire! It was miserable smelling that stinking mess. I will book RCCL if this policy holds. Smokers don’t realization how bad their fumes smell and clearly don’t care if they ruin others’ fun. If ships must have smoking balconies, at least put them all on the starboard side. I have to go home and sanitize my stinky clothes where I tried to sit outside on the balcony I paid for.

  125. Glen

    Thanks for posting this thread. I will not be booking a cruise with Royal Caribbean. I’m amazed that with 25% of the adult population of the U.S. being smokers that RCL is so ready to just walk away from this many potential customers. You tried non-smoking ships. How did that work for you? Smokers are willing to compromise, but some radicals insist on pushing things to extremes like this. Extending this silly restriction to eCigarettes shows that this is not just being done for the convenience of non-smokers, but is misguided social engineering by radical do-gooders.

    Bon Voyage RCL

  126. Julia

    Just read the new “Smoking Policy’ on Royal Caribbean. We take one cruise per year and WILL NOT book with RCCL again because of this discriminating policy. We booked a balcony room to enjoy our e-cigs without having to get dressed and go on a journey to the smoking area. Never again! This is discrimination! You didn’t even offer balcony rooms on the ‘smoking’ side of the ship for smokers to enjoy their legal activity. You won’t see my $3000 again. What’s next? Jail? Wrong, wrong, wrong RCCL. Going to book with a ‘smoker freindly’ cruise line next year.

  127. Terry

    Now that I know your new policy about smoking on balconies, you can bank that I will NEVER book another roal cruise. I pay extra for that balcony, I have a very stressful job, am up at 4 am and I so looked forward to my cruise and just relaxing on the balcony in the morning with a coffee and a cigarette, you have ruined my whole vacation, am not looking forward to it, if I would not lose my money I would cancel it.. You say designated areas, that’s a laugh two decks, in two spots, there should be areas on every deck, and IF you are so concerned for non smokers rights then why allow smoking in the casino?? I will tell you why, because if you banned it in their you would lose way too much money, but you who voted this balcony ban better read some of the comments, you will now be losing allot of people booking a cruise thru your cruise line. My friends and myself will not be sailing with you EVER again until and when you change it back, you should have all travel agents tell people about this policy BEFORe they book, I found out by accident Fromm a friend of a friend who Jusy came back from a cruise and he said both he and his wife had the worst cruise ever, and they have 19 cruises thru you, but now they will never book another one with you. At least one side of the ship should be smoking, SHAME ON YOU ROYAL

  128. Scott Meadwell

    I think the ideas about putting smokers at the rear of the ship make a lot of sense. I would travel with RCCL for sure if the casino was non-smoking. How much trouble is it to pop out to the 5th deck smoking area from time to time? Banning it from balconies however is completely unacceptable.

    I’m willing to bet that by far the majority of non-smokers would prefer to see the casino 100% smoke free in exchange for designated smoking balconies at the rear of the ship.

    Until the militant non-smoking group at RCCL wakes up I will be booking elsewhere. I book for a family of 6 that has a combined 228 cruise nights in the past 5 years with RCCL. Bon Voyage Militant non-smokers.

    • Liz

      My husband, pre-teen daughter & myself are Diamond Members. We have always booked a balcony or suite when we cruise. We have been loyal RC cruisers, but with this new policy in place that will not be the case. I am a non-smoker, but my husband is a smoker. I am very sensitive to smoke & don’t like the smell. But truthfully because my husband has always smoked outside, the smell & smoke has never bothered me at home or while we sit out on our balcony while cruising. We specifically spend the extra money to book a balcony room so that he can relax while he is on vacation. He has a very stressful job in which he works countless hours, seven days a week. How relaxing will that be for him to have to leave the room each time he wants to have a cigarette – it won’t be. Shame on you Mr. Goldstein for discriminating against a person’s freedom of choice. I am not pleased to find out about this policy right before we are leaving on Spring Break. We take cruises 2-3 times a year, so it looks like we will be looking for a new cruiseline. In fact I was just getting ready to book our annual Thanksgiving Cruise with you, but I am thankful that I found out about this grand policy before I did so. Good Luck Mr. Goldstein paying for all those nice new ships you are building, that I am sure will be funded by all those non-smokers you are making happy.

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  • The banana toffee panini. Simple, sweet, sublime. Follow the link our profile to see the full menu for Michael's Genuine Pub.
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  • Skip along the tree tops in St. Maarten.
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  • See CocoCay by kayak (and check in this weekend for our favorite adventures in Labadee and St. Maarten, too).
Why Everyone Should Get Involved and Volunteer Everywhere

Friday, April 18, 2014 11:50 AM

GIVE Day (Get Involved Volunteer Everywhere) is the corporate global volunteer day for Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and is our largest employee community event. My name is Helen O’Connell, Manager... Continue Here to Read More…

Quantum Class Ships: Empowering Guests to Take Full Control of Their Dining Experience

Thursday, April 10, 2014 2:14 PM

Hi everyone. I’m excited to begin our Quantum of the Seas blog series by sharing details about a new approach to dining at sea onboard Royal Caribbean International’s Quantum Class ships. Our... Continue Here to Read More…

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Monday, March 10, 2014 10:11 AM

We are not all the same.  Not in life and not in business.  As a consequence, maintaining a healthy perspective on differences among people is a critical success factor in a business career. Some... Continue Here to Read More…

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Wednesday, February 19, 2014 3:30 PM

It might be my impending trip to Shanghai for dinner with four red eye flights in five nights.  I want to believe this will be tolerable.  So I find myself thinking of some of the humorous things I... Continue Here to Read More…

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Friday, February 14, 2014 1:56 PM

Guest post by Nick Weir I’m Nick Weir, the Vice President of Entertainment at Royal Caribbean International.  As usual we’ve been hard at work and are very focused on Quantum of the Seas in... Continue Here to Read More…

She’s Back…Navigator of the Seas Emerges After Massive Makeover

Friday, February 7, 2014 6:20 PM

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Productivity Hacks: Build a Great Team at Work and at Home

Wednesday, January 22, 2014 12:35 PM

When you live at the outer limits of multitasking, you never feel productive enough. So it’s nice of LinkedIn to assign a topic on the premise that I am in fact productive. Time is the scarce... Continue Here to Read More…

Why Project Radiance Didn’t Turn Out as Planned

Monday, January 13, 2014 3:00 PM

A reader recently asked if there was a time where I did something and it didn’t turn out the way I wanted it to, and what I did after that.  There are probably many relevant examples, but the one... Continue Here to Read More…

The Importance of Shipyard Visits

Monday, January 6, 2014 5:59 PM

Recently I visited both shipyards that are currently building ships for Royal Caribbean International.  First I traveled to Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany (builders of Quantum of the Seas,... Continue Here to Read More…

Looking Forward to 2014

Tuesday, December 31, 2013 12:17 PM

Happy New Year to all of our loyal readers and especially to our loyal Royal Caribbean cruisers.  As we head from one intense year in the cruise industry to the next, I would like to express my... Continue Here to Read More…