Since simulated test cruises were first announced, the excitement around them has been non-stop. Now Royal Caribbean is finally giving volunteers the opportunity to enter a sweepstakes for one of these coveted spots. But you’ll need to hurry, the chance to enter for a spot is only open for 24 hours.
As cruises begin their comeback, some lines like Royal Caribbean are opting for a path with simulated voyages. These are essentially test cruises where the staff gets a chance to practice new protocols and show health authorities at the CDC that they can sail safely under new regulations.
According to the CDC guidelines, the cruise line must select volunteers for these cruises — not paying passengers. So far the cruise line has sailed several of these trips, said to be largely made up of Royal Caribbean employees.
Months ago, however, the cruise line created a Facebook Group called “Volunteer of the Seas” that put out a call for volunteers to fill out a form expressing their interest. According to the cruise line, hundreds of thousands of passengers signed up.
Since then, there has been little news for those that registered, despite Royal Caribbean already sailing some volunteer test cruises. Now that’s changing.
Today the company sent an email to those who signed up with details on how register for one final time to be chosen for a test cruise.
How to Enter to Win a Volunteer Cruise Spot
Here’s how it works: Starting at 12 a.m. EDT on August 6 and running through August 7 at 12 a.m. EDT, interested volunteers can go to VolunteeroftheSeas.com and fill out the entry form.
Each person signing up will automatically have one entry into the sweepstakes. But if you are a Crown & Anchor member, then you get additional entries based on your status. The additional entries are as follows:
- Pinnacle members: 11 additional entries
- Diamond Plus members: 9 additional entries
- Diamond members: 7 additional entries
- Emerald members: 5 additional entries
- Platinum members: 3 additional entries
- Gold members: 1 additional entry
Not a Pinnacle member? Here’s the good news — you can get the same number of entries as someone with the highest-tier status. According to the email, each person “can submit additional entries – up to a total of 12 entries per person! Diamond Plus tiers and below, you can also submit additional entries to reach the 12 entry maximum.”
The official rules say that the contest is open to all 50 states, excluding Montana, and you’ll need to be 18 or older in most states.
Royal Caribbean will award 1,125 grand prizes of a cabin for two aboard one of its simulated cruises, worth a value of $650.
The rules also say that the prize does not include transportation or hotel accommodations. You also must be available to sail on the date of the sailings. No word on if you are allowed a pick of sailing as multiple ships will have simulated voyages upcoming.
You can enter at VolunteeroftheSeas.com starting midnight, August 6.
For more details on simulated voyages and what to expect on the ship, see our article outlining the process here.