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The largest cruise ship ever built no longer will debut in Asia -- here's where it'll sail instead

Sept. 15, 2021
3 min read
The largest cruise ship ever built no longer will debut in Asia -- here's where it'll sail instead
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Royal Caribbean's newest and largest cruise ship, Wonder of the Seas, which was due to begin sailings from Shanghai, China, in early 2022, will now sail Caribbean and Mediterranean itineraries.

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Royal Caribbean, which restarted sailings from Singapore in late 2020 with Quantum of the Seas, still has a presence in Asia.

Due to COVID-19, however, China is currently not allowing cruises, so the line will relocate Wonder of the Seas -- the newest and largest in the line's much-loved Oasis Class -- to Fort Lauderdale, where it will begin a series of spring Caribbean voyages on March 4, 2022. Port calls will include Cozumel; St. Maarten; and San Juan, Puerto Rico, among others.

From there, the ship will relocate to Barcelona, Spain, to offer a summer season of seven-night Mediterranean cruises, calling on ports like Capri and Palma de Mallorca. (Wonder of the Seas replaces Allure of the Seas in the Med, following Allure's relocation to Fort Lauderdale, where the ship now offers six- and eight-night Caribbean voyages.)

Wonder of the Seas will join fleetmate and fellow new ship Odyssey of the Seas in these regions for 2022.

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"The momentum taking off across bookings and our returning ships in the U.S. and Europe is significant," said Michael Bayley, president and CEO of Royal Caribbean International, in a statement. "With half of our fleet sailing again, we are encouraged by what we're seeing. These regions are in the position to welcome a brand-new, innovative ship like Wonder of the Seas."

As with other ships in the Oasis Class, Wonder of the Seas will feature a neighborhood concept, including the open-air Boardwalk; Central Park, which features thousands of live plants; and the Royal Promenade, where passengers can dine, drink and shop. It will also include a brand-new Suite Neighborhood, bringing the number of onboard neighborhoods from seven to eight.

The Suite Neighborhood offers Royal Suite Class cruisers access to a private restaurant, lounge and sun deck with a plunge pool and dedicated bar. Also found in this area is the line's largest Ultimate Family Suite, which can accommodate up to 10 people.

The ship will also offer a reimagined pool area; Wonder Playscape, an interactive, top-deck family play area; and The Vue, a cantilevered bar that offers panoramic sea views.

Passengers booked on Wonder of the Seas' original China itineraries have been contacted by Royal Caribbean and will be given full refunds of any money paid.

Wonder of the Seas' Caribbean itineraries are currently open for booking; its Mediterranean bookings open on Sept. 22.

Featured image by Wonder of the Seas rendering. (Photo courtesy of Royal Caribbean)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
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10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
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Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

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  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023