Sunday, October 9, 2011

Welcome Aboard Allure of the Seas

Royal Caribbean
Allure of the SeasSM
Day 1 
First in a series of articles about our 7 Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise on Allure of the Seas. Virtually tour with us as we explore the Allure of the Seas and all she has to offer.  We'll highlight some of our adventures on land and sea during the week. 

Allure of the Seas & Emerald Princes - Ft. Lauderdale
Waking early Sunday morning, we went out on our hotel balcony to see the  Allure of the Seas and Emerald Princess completing their docking maneuvers.  Soon we would be onboard the Allure for our National Conference cruise.

We left the Hyatt Ft. Lauderdale hotel around 10:45 AM with another agent couple. After returning their rental car, the shuttle took all of us to Pier 66, which is within sight of the hotel.  We had to wait while for the shuttle, so we got to the pier around 11:30 AM.   By noon we were onboard the ship.

Embarkation Process

Most of you are aware that Allure of the Seas is the largest cruise ship in the world at present.  She and her sister ship, Oasis of the Seas, are the latest ships in Royal Caribbean International's fleet.   Allure is coming up on her one year anniversary, while Oasis celebrates her second birthday this year.  Fully loaded, these ships accommodate around 6,000 passengers.  Allure sailed at full capacity for our sailing.

The amazing thing is that Royal Caribbean guarantees that you won't have a long wait for embarkation.   This was our second cruise on Allure, and they delivered on their promise both times.  

We are Diamond members, which means there would be a special line for us at embarkation, but we didn't even need to go in that line.   After passing through security, we headed to the check-in lines where we were directed to a gentleman holding up his sign indicating that he was open and waiting for guests.  

The embarkation stations are grouped by deck making for a very efficient process.  After giving the check-in agent our completed paperwork, showing our passports, providing the credit card for onboard purchases, and having our picture taken for our cabin keys, we were off for our first photo opportunity, the Welcome Aboard photo.  He had given us our cabin keys, The Cruise Planner (pictured above), and a fold-up pocket guide map of the ship.   These can be very useful throughout the ship, but if you read our past article, Navigating the Allure of the Seas, you'll discover that there are more efficient ways to find your way around.

Getting Onboard

After our photo, we gathered our carry-on bags and headed to the gangway.   We showed our cabin key several times, including having it scanned, and then we were headed up the gangway to the Allure's entrance.  At the top of the gangway, it's time to sanitize your hands and step aboard the ship.  Cabins weren't ready for occupancy, so it was time to explore the open public areas.

What's the first thing you do when you get onboard - read our next article to see what we did on Allure of the Seas...

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