EDIT OCTOBER 26– Royal Caribbean is now announcing their Summer 2021 schedule a bit later. Original story follows below.
We sailed in the Villa Suite this Summer on the Liberty of the Seas. It was an amazing experience (link opens video). There was a trick, though. To get this cabin for July 2019, we had to book it in November 2017. Our group wants to take another trip. That means we need to know the Royal Caribbean 2021 schedule. Fortunately, the company has announced when they will have those details. Here, we talk about what we know and what the impact will be for cruisers from Galveston.
What do we know about the Royal Caribbean 2021 schedule?
Royal Caribbean usually announces cruise schedules a year at a time. Caribbean schedules usually run from late Spring to the following Spring. Currently, Royal Caribbean has Galveston schedules running through 2021.
We also know that Royal Caribbean and the Port of Galveston are working on a deal to build a third cruise pier. While details are closely held, officials would like that cruise pier to be finished in Fall 2021. That cruise pier will be operated by Royal Caribbean, and it will be designed for higher capacity ships.
The Liberty of the Seas, the largest ship currently sailing from Galveston, first moved there in November 2015. The Liberty sails 7 night itineraries. The Enchantment of the Seas presently sails 4 and 5 night cruises to Mexico. It will be replaced by the Adventure of the Seas in November 2020. Royal Caribbean typically changes which ships sail from which ports every few years.
Finally, we know when Royal Caribbean will announce their 2021-2022 schedule. During the week of November 4, 2019, the will announce the schedule for week long cruises from Galveston and other Caribbean ports. The schedule for 4 and 5 night cruises will be announced two weeks later.
What does this mean for Galveston?
The paragraphs above are news that we know to be true based on Royal Caribbean and Port of Galveston statements. What follows is projecting into the future. That necessarily involves a bit of speculation. However, there are several safe assumptions. The first one is this– for most cabins on most itineraries, there is no need to book a year and a half in advance. That may offer the best deals, and it will certainly offer the widest selection. Many people can’t plan that far in advance, though, and Royal Caribbean will be happy to sell them a cabin much later.
If you want a specialty cabin or the widest selection, however, it is good to book as early as possible. For Galveston, this gets tricky. The new schedule will cover cruises starting in April 2021. The new pier isn’t scheduled for completion until Fall 2021. The Liberty moved to Galveston in Fall 2015, and the Adventure will move there in Fall 2020. That means there is some chance the Liberty of the Seas will continue her run from Galveston for at least a few more months.
We also don’t know the total number of ship Royal Caribbean plans to run from Galveston. The new cruise pier almost certainly means they plan to increase capacity. However, that could come from either adding a third ship or replacing the Liberty with a larger ship. It is likely that the Adventure of the Seas will continue from Galveston for some time after its November 2020 arrival. As for the other ships, please follow us here on Galveston Cruise Reviews. We will post more news as soon as we have it!