It is no surprise that what will be the biggest, most innovative cruise ship history has ever seen has been voted as the most anticipated new ship coming in 2024.
Royal Caribbean International’s upcoming Icon of the Seas – already en route to Miami, Florida for her January debut – has taken the honors in the Cruise Hive Awards.
Most Anticipated New Cruise Ship for 2024 – Icon of the Seas
Cruise Hive’s readers have spoken and 47.23% of voters selected Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas as the most anticipated new ship of 2024. Tremendous buzz has surrounded the immense ship since her first steel was cut in June 2021, with teaser videos and behind-the-scenes looks at the new features and amenities the vessel will offer.
Yet other upcoming ships also fared well with great anticipation in the new year. Princess Cruises’ Sun Princess came in second with 13.93% of the votes, followed closely by the final Oasis-class vessel for Royal Caribbean, Utopia of the Seas, with 13.07% of the votes.
Disney Cruise Line’s new Disney Treasure, sister ship to the popular Disney Wish, is another top choice with 11.16% of the vote.
Cunard Line’s Queen Anne garnered 5.92% of the vote as the most anticipated new ship, with Viking Vela from Viking Cruises gaining 4.20%. Explora II from Explora Journeys came in with 2.86%, followed by Silversea Cruises’ Silver Ray with 1.43% of the vote. Together, TUI Cruises’ Mein Schiff 7 and Mein Schiff 8 rounded out the voting with just .19% of the vote.
It is no surprise that the smaller, niche cruise lines – luxury cruises and expedition cruises – did not have as many votes, as fewer travelers have experience with those lines. All the new ships, however, are sure to offer amazing experiences to every guest who sets sail.
It should also be noted that Norwegian Cruise Line has no upcoming ships set to launch in 2024, as the new Norwegian Aqua will be setting sail in 2025. Similarly, Carnival Cruise Line does not have any new build ships on order for 2024. The upcoming Carnival Firenze, which will debut in April 2024, is not considered a “new” ship, though she will undergo extensive refurbishment before joining the Carnival fleet.
When Will Icon of the Seas Set Sail?
Cruise fans will not have long to wait for Icon of the Seas in 2024, as the ship is already sailing for Miami, Florida and is currently in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean on her way to her new homeport. Before she arrives, however, she will have a resupply stop in Puerto Rico, taking on additional fuel and final crew members before she arrives in the Sunshine State.
The exact date when Icon of the Seas will sail into PortMiami for the first time has not yet been announced, but is sure to be a grand occasion with great fanfare to greet the new ship.
The first guests will board Icon of the Seas for her inaugural cruise on Saturday, January 27, 2024. That first voyage is a 7-night Eastern Caribbean & Perfect Day cruise, with visits to St. Kitts, St. Thomas, and Perfect Day at CocoCay. The new ship will be alternating Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries from Miami year-round at least through April 2026.
Why Icon of the Seas Took the Title
Why is Icon of the Seas the most anticipated ship of 2024? It could be her impressive size at 250,800-gross-tons, or her amazing capacity of 5,610 passengers at double occupancy and up to 7,600 travelers when fully booked.
It could also be the ship’s engineering marvels, such as the largest waterpark at sea with Thrill Island, the amazing structural support provided by the unique Pearl, or the phenomenal transformational space of the AquaDome.
The ship’s family-oriented atmosphere, with the Surfside neighborhood and a range of venues and features dedicated to young families, are also appealing not only to family cruisers, but to multi-generational families who want to enjoy a cruise vacation together. Icon of the Seas truly has something for everyone.
Are you looking forward to Icon of the Seas? Share your hopes for the new ship on the Cruise Hive boards!