Royal Caribbean has a track record of building the largest cruise ships in the world. In 2009, it was Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas. In 2015, it was Allure’s sister ship, Harmony of the Seas. Now, it’s the Symphony of the Seas cruise ship, built in 2018.
Symphony of the Seas Stats
- Gross Tonnage: 228,081
- Passenger Capacity: 5,518
- Passenger Decks: 16
- Crew Members: 2,200
- Length: 1,188 Feet
- Entered Service: 2018
If you’re thinking of going on a cruise in the near future, whether you’re a first-time cruiser or an old pro, and you want the biggest and the best, you can’t go wrong with a Symphony of the Seas cruise.
The ship is only a few years old, so it boasts some of the latest and greatest tech, amenities and other features, and, of course, with all of that space, you can definitely find plenty to do and enjoy, no matter what kind of traveler you are or what kind of entertainment catches your interest.
Intrigued? Here’s everything you need to know about Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas.
1. How Large is Symphony of the Seas?
When you’re talking the biggest cruise ship in the world, how big are you talking, exactly?
With a gross tonnage of 228,081 and a length of 1,184.42 feet, Symphony of the Seas isn’t that much bigger than sister ships Harmony of the Seas, Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas — but it’s much bigger than the mega-ships that you’ll find outside of the Royal Caribbean family.
The next-biggest ship, ranking fifth in the world, is Costa Smeralda from Costa Cruises, which debuted in 2019 at 185,010 GT, a whopping near 50,000 GT less than Symphony of the Seas.
Broken down, what does all of that mean for you, the cruiser?
On Symphony of the Seas, you’ll find 18 decks, nearly 2,800 staterooms and capacity for 6,680 passengers at maximum capacity or 5,518 passengers at double occupancy (alongside more than 2,000 crew members). Royal Caribbean put it all together for a cost of $1.35 billion.
2. What Class ship is Symphony of the Seas?
When it comes to cruise ships, the class of ship that your vessel is in can really change up your experience.
All cruise ships in a certain class share a handful of amenities and stylings, so you can expect a fairly similar experience across all of the ships in one class (while acknowledging that newer ships within a class will likely have newer amenities and tech).
However, Symphony of the Seas is not Royal Caribbean’s last Oasis-class ship. The cruise line expects to roll out a final and largest-ever ship with Wonder of the Seas, due to be completed in 2022.
All put together, though, the Oasis class is filled with the world’s largest passenger ships, and Wonder of the Seas, once it’s revealed, will only be a further extension of Royal Caribbean’s continual progress in this area.
3. What’s Included?
When you’re taking a cruise on the world’s largest cruise ship, it makes sense that you would hope to get the best bang for your buck. After all, what’s the point of a huge cruise ship with tons of stuff to do, if you’re having to pay extra for all of it?
The good thing about a Symphony of the Seas cruise is that there’s a lot included in your base cruise fare.
Included in the cost of your stateroom, you’ll also receive complimentary dining in a selection of dining rooms and restaurants (including the ship’s main dining rooms and buffets, as well as:
- Park Cafe
- El Loco Fresh
- Solarium Bistro,
- Boardwalk Dog House
- Sorrento’s Pizza
Also Cafe Promenade, with extra options available for those that book specialty staterooms); shows and daily entertainment; access to the fitness and sports centers; outdoor activities; and children’s programming.
The only areas where you’ll have to pay a little extra? Whenever you go to specialty restaurants or when you book extra activities, such as fitness classes, spa treatments or shore excursions. Special amenities, such as babysitting and WiFi, also come with an additional charge.
4. Symphony of the Seas Standard Staterooms
You can’t go wrong with any of the staterooms on the Symphony of the Seas cruise ship. Any option that you pick is sure to please.
If you want to go with a standard stateroom versus a suite, you can choose from an interior stateroom, ocean-view stateroom, balcony stateroom or virtual balcony stateroom, each of which comes with its own features and perks.
Interior staterooms are more on the budget-friendly side, but you won’t be stuffed into some drab and musty hole on this ship. The interior staterooms are elegant and upgraded, with an aesthetic similar to what you might find in a luxury, urban hotel. There’s plenty of floorspace and seating, too.
The ocean-view staterooms offer expansive windows for excellent views, all cruise-long. Virtual balcony staterooms offer similar views, with huge, floor-to-ceiling displays that show you exactly what’s happening right beyond the wall of the cruise ship, wherever your stateroom happens to be situated, and it’s all made possible thanks to the magic of tech.
Balcony staterooms offer extra seating, both tables and loungers, for open air views.
5. Suites and VIP Accommodations
For those who want a little bit of an upgrade, suites and VIP accommodation options are plentiful aboard Symphony of the Seas.
Suites are humongous and the Royal Suite Class comes with all kinds of additional perks that you’ll love, from exclusive experiences to personalized and customized amenities that are built for your cruising needs.
Ultimate Family Suite
The all-new Ultimate Family Suite is the coolest VIP accommodations option on the ship, though.
Perfect for traveling groups or large families, the suite gives you two stories of space and tons of amenities that are kid-friendly, such as a ping-pong table on the balcony, an air hockey table and even an in-suite slide.
There’s also an in-suite cinema, video games on demand and, of course, plenty of places for the family to hang out and relax.
6. What are Symphony of the Seas Complimentary Dining Options?
The complimentary dining options aboard Symphony of the Seas include, as mentioned above, the ship’s main dining rooms and buffet, as well as Park Cafe, El Loco Fresh, Solarium Bistro, Boardwalk Dog House, Sorrento’s Pizza and Cafe Promenade, with extra options available for those that book specialty staterooms.
That adds up to nearly 10 different choices for you and your family when it comes to choosing where to grab your next meal.
Wherever you go, make sure to try out El Loco Fresh while on your cruise, as the eatery is a new addition to the Royal Caribbean line-up. The casual Mexican restaurant is open for both breakfast and lunch.
7. Specialty Dining Options
If you’re willing to splurge a bit, you’ll find lots of additional dining options at your disposal. Of course, with so many complimentary dining options at your fingertips, you surely won’t be left wanting for places to find food even if you don’t decide to splurge, but it’s still nice to have the choice.
Specialty dining options include:
- Izumi Hibachi and Sushi
- Johnny Rockets
- Sugar Beach (a new venue for the ship, which offers tons of sweet treats, as you might expect from the name)
- Playmakers Sports Bar
- Chops Grille
- 150 Central Park
- Jamie’s Italian
- Hooked Seafood (another new venue, offering New England-style seafood).
There’s something for everyone, whether you like casual dining and simple American classics; fine dining and surf and turf; or celebrity chef-inspired eats.
8. Outdoor Fun Aboard Symphony of the Seas
Outdoor fun is a must on every cruise, and with a family-oriented ship like Symphony of the Seas, the bar is set high — so it’s a good thing that this cruise ship really delivers. There are endless ways for you to have a bit of fun in the sun during your Symphony of the Seas cruise.
There are four pools across the ship’s Deck 15 (a step up from some of its Oasis-class sister ships). There’s a beach-themed pool with a rock wall, a main pool, a sports pool and a splash area for kids. Hot tubs are situated around each of the pools, for plenty of options there as well.
For fun with more of an adrenaline-pumping thrill, cruisers can try out the FlowRider surf simulator (there are two on this ship) or the new Ultimate Abyss Slide, which is a true heart-stopping experiences, as the slide (which uses mats, rather than water) drops you 10 stories as lights and sound effects whir around you all the while.
A zip line gives you views of the ship’s boardwalk. Royal Caribbean’s Perfect Storm trio of waterslides is also featured.
Other, lower-key fun can be found on the sports court and across the sun decks. The Solarium is likewise a nice place to relax for those ages 16 and up.
9. Indoor Fun
If you’re staying out of the sun this trip, indoor fun is plentiful as well. There’s the Royal Theater, with its many entertainment options, ranging from a rendition of Broadway musical “Hairspray” to unique shows incorporating acrobatics, music and tech.
An ice rink doubles as a laser tag arena. An escape room cashes in on the latest trends in family fun. An aqua theater shows off high-flying acrobatics in an outdoor environment.
You can, of course, find plenty of ever-changing daily activities arranged by the enthusiastic crew, from dance classes to card games.
At night, the indoor fun becomes a little more adult-oriented, with deck parties and abundant bars and lounges. You can choose to visit any of 17 different watering holes, each of which feature their own vibe. Find lively dance clubs with live music, or a quieter spot to sip on a refined cocktail and enjoy your fellow cruisers’ company.
There’s also a casino on-board.
Symphony of the Seas Prices
Symphony of the Seas Insider Tips
The following are just a few Symphony of the Seas tips that some insiders have put together to make your cruise experience much more enjoyable and easy to manage.
Worth Checking: 50 Royal Caribbean Cruise Tips and Tricks
Check-in Online. You have the three days leading up to your sail date to check in online. It takes less than ten minutes to do and can save you a significant amount of time on the actual embarkment date.
Have Gratuities? Prepay. Most cruises charge a daily service charge per person. You are always given the option to pay these charges ahead of time. This is recommended so you can have a better idea on your budget and you can plan accordingly.
Make Reservations. While it is not required, it is still a good idea to make reservations for the entertainment offered on the ship.
Signature entertainment such as the Aqua Theater Show, the Main Theater shows, ice show, and comedy show do actually require reservations. So, these should be made prior to your cruise so you don’t miss out because of limited seating.
Download the Royal Caribbean App. After completing your pre-cruise check-in, your next step should be to download the app. The app can also be used as your sail pass once you have gone through security as well.
Explore the Ship. If you are one of the earlier passengers, it should be noted that the rooms will not be ready until 1 pm. The ship is massive, so take some time to walk around and explore on your first day while you are waiting.
Make Dining Reservations. If you have pre-booked your dining package, then you can begin scheduling your dinners for your cruise week. Many of the specialty restaurants will run out of tables quickly especially during those prime times, so it is always a good idea to reserve your table.
Wow Bands. These are bracelets you wear that act as your key card so you can have access to your room. It also allows you to order certain items by just swiping your wrist. It offers a lot in the way of convenience.
Symphony of the Seas FAQ
How big is Symphony of the Seas?
With a gross tonnage of 228,081 and a length of 1,184.42 feet, on Symphony of the Seas, you’ll find 18 decks, nearly 2,800 staterooms and capacity for 6,680 passengers at maximum capacity or 5,518 passengers at double occupancy (alongside more than 2,000 crew members, meaning there’s a crew to passenger ratio of about 1:3).
How long is Symphony of the Seas?
Symphony of the Seas is 1,184.42 feet, making it nearly 100 feet longer than the largest military ship built to date (U.S. Nimitz aircraft carriers).
What class ship is Symphony of the Seas?
Symphony of the Seas is a member of Royal Caribbean’s Oasis class. The fourth vessel in this class, Symphony of the Seas followed Oasis of the Seas, Allure of the Seas and Harmony of the Seas.
However, Symphony of the Seas is not Royal Caribbean’s last Oasis-class ship. The cruise line expects to roll out a final and largest-ever ship with Wonder of the Seas, due to be completed in 2022. All put together, the Oasis class is filled with the world’s largest passenger ships.
Is Symphony of the Seas all-inclusive?
Symphony of the Seas is not all-inclusive, but it is pretty inclusive. Included in the cost of your stateroom, you’ll also receive complimentary dining in a selection of dining rooms and restaurants (including the ship’s main dining rooms and buffets, as well as at Park Cafe, El Loco Fresh, Solarium Bistro, Boardwalk Dog House, Sorrento’s Pizza and Cafe Promenade, with extra options available for those that book specialty staterooms); shows and daily entertainment; access to the fitness and sports centers; outdoor activities; and children’s programming.
Extra costs include specialty restaurants and extra activities, such as fitness classes, spa treatments or shore excursions. Special amenities, such as babysitting and WiFi, also come with an additional charge.
Are there exciting and fun onboard activities the kids will enjoy?
Definitely! You will find glow in the dark laser tag, two surf simulators, and one of the tallest slides you can find at sea along with an arcade and a ton of other entertainment for the entire family.
Can you reserve the shows on the cruise?
Yes. Passengers can reserve the shows ahead of time. The average time that these reservations are placed are typically between 75 and 60 days before the cruise sail date. It is also important to note that each sailing is different.
Is there a Royal Caribbean app?
When sailing on Symphony of the Seas, passengers can use the app for a variety of different functions and will be able to manage different aspects of their cruise.
The functions it currently provides includes an Access Cruise Planner, the chance to view all daily activities, mobile check-in, real-time folio access, dining preferences, reservations, and reservation linking with other passengers, among others.
Does it cost extra to use the app on Symphony of the Seas?
No. The app does not cost anything, and it is not required that you purchase a Wi-Fi package to use the app while you are onboard the ship.
Is smoking allowed on the ship?
Yes. But only in designated smoking areas as posted on the ship like the port side of the pool and the casino.
How many bags does Royal Caribbean allow onboard?
Each passenger is able to bring 200 pounds of personal property. However, Royal Caribbean is not responsible or liable if anything is to get lost or damaged.
Can I check-in online?
Yes. You can complete your online check-in on the Royal Caribbean site up to three days before your sail date.
Is there an additional charge for the shows?
All the shows are complimentary and included with the cruise.
What are the different room types available on Symphony of the Seas?
You can choose from interior staterooms, ocean view staterooms, a balcony stateroom, or a virtual balcony stateroom. There is also a nightly turndown service.
If you are traveling with a baby, they can provide you with a crib and other supplies you may need. If you are traveling with others, you can also choose to select staterooms that are connected so you can accommodate even more guests.