You likely already know that the Super Bowl is one of the most-watched events in the world. Each year more than 110 million people in America — and millions more around the world — watch the championship game. It’s become a must-see with seemingly as many people watching for the commercials or the halftime show as for the actual game itself.
And while some people think that Super Bowl Sunday should be a national holiday, that doesn’t stop the cruise lines from sailing. In fact, the time around the game (held on February 5, 2017) is usually one of the cheapest times of year to cruise. So if you take advantage of these low fares, then you’ll likely be wondering how you can watch the game while you are on your cruise.
The good news is that even if you are in the middle of the ocean, you can still watch the Super Bowl.
Catching the Game at Sea
This year the Super Bowl is being broadcast in the United States on Fox. Now, not every cruise line will offer Fox as a channel in your cabin. In fact, Carnival is the only cruise line we’ve found that explicitly says they have it in staterooms.
Still, this doesn’t mean you have to worry about watching the game. The ship receives its TV stations via satellite. Since it is cruising in international waters, it usually picks up the international versions of programs and stations.
The Super Bowl is a massive event streamed via broadcast partners around the world. Even if the ship doesn’t receive Fox, it won’t matter — it will have an international stream of the game coming in via satellite.
Given the importance of the game to guests, every cruise line will have a place to watch the game live on the ship.
Where on the Ship You Can Watch
Where you can watch the game on the ship will vary, depending on the cruise line. For major games like this one, the ship’s sports-themed bars will always have the channel up. Most cruise lines will also play the game on the outdoor screen in the pool area. Pull up a chair, relax, and watch in comfort.
You may or may not be able to watch the Super Bowl in your cabin. This depends on what station the game is streamed to and if that channel is then routed to your cabin. So if you’re the sort of person who really like to focus on the game without the “party” atmosphere of watching with a ton of other people, then you might have to grin and bear it.
If you are the type that likes to watch the game is a social setting, then you’re in luck. All the ships will make the Super Bowl an event; they won’t just put up the game. Many like to put on “tailgates” at sea with prizes, as well as drink and food specials. For example, Carnival and Norwegian both have big parties for the game. Details on your cruise will be featured in the daily calendar you receive on Super Bowl Sunday.
Be Ready to Miss Super Bowl Commercials
Are you one of the millions of people that watches the Super Bowl for the commercials? On a cruise, you might be disappointed. As we said earlier, you most likely won’t be getting the traditional broadcast you are used to when viewing the game from home. Instead, it will likely be an international feed of the game. That means the same commercials shown stateside aren’t always shown on your cruise.
Don’t fear if you can’t watch the commercials. These days many companies release them early and every commercial will be available on YouTube the following day. You can always catch up later.
The bottom line is that yes, you can watch the Super Bowl on your cruise and it will be as big an event at sea as it is on land. You may or may not be able to watch in your cabin. You are likely to not be able to see the commercials as they air.