Royal Caribbean Cruise Will Go Ahead Following Technical Difficulties

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Following a recent cancellation due to technical difficulties, Royal Caribbean International assures passengers that Brilliance of the Seas will maintain its April 4th sailing schedule.

Brilliance of the Seas Stays the Course

Despite the recent cancellation of its March 30th sailing, Royal Caribbean is pressing ahead with plans for Brilliance of the Seas to set sail on April 4, 2024. 

Brilliance of the Seas experienced a propulsion issue during a voyage in the South Pacific, forcing the ship to return to Sydney port and cancel numerous calls on its 11-night cruise.

The technical issues were serious enough that the cruise line also cancelled its following 5-night “Tasmania” voyage, slated to sail on March 30. Although Brilliance of the Seas is still undergoing repairs, Royal Caribbean assures travelers that its 8-night “South Pacific Cruise” will depart on time.

“Work remains underway, and we are progressing towards completing repairs over the next few days,” wrote Aurora Year-Rodriguez, assistant vice president, Guest Experience, for Royal Caribbean International, in a letter to passengers.

“We still intend to sail as planned on 4 April 2024, and we remain committed to keeping you informed every step of the way,” she added.

Navigating Past Troubles

The unwavering stance from Royal Caribbean follows the disruption caused by technical troubles with the ship’s propulsion. After departing Sydney on March 19, Brilliance of the Seas “South Pacific Cruise” intended to stop in Lifou and Noumea, New Caledonia, and Mystery Island, Vila, and Luganville, Vanuatu.

Brilliance of the Seas
Brilliance of the Seas (Photo Credit: StudioPortoSabbia)

However, just four days into its voyage, the ship experienced a propulsion issue that forced it to remain in Santal Bay, near the island of Lifou, missing its port call as crew worked to repair the issue. The technical difficulties were too severe to fix, and Brilliance of the Seas was forced to return to Sydney, bypassing all ports and forcing passengers aboard to spend the entire cruise at sea.

Passengers were compensated with a 100% refund of cruise fare, taxes, fees, and gratuities, as well as flights and additional travel expenses. Unfortunately, passengers scheduled to depart on March 30 on a roundtrip cruise from Sydney to Hobart were informed Brilliance of the Seas would not be able to make the voyage.

If Royal Caribbean completes current repairs in time, as it anticipates, Brilliance of the Seas will once again depart from Sydney on a roundtrip journey, visiting Noumea, Lifou, and Mystery Island over the course of 8 nights on its April 4 sailing.

The ship is then scheduled to journey across the Pacific to begin a summer season in Alaska. The 17-night “Transpacific Cruise” transition cruise will take Brilliance of the Seas from its homeport in Sydney to call in Bay of Islands and Tauranga, New Zealand; and Raiatea, Papeete, and Moorea, French Polynesia, before arriving in Honolulu, Hawaii on April 28.

A shorter “Hawaii Cruise” will follow to transition Brilliance of the Seas from Honolulu to Vancouver, where the ship will homeport during its roundtrip summer journeys to Alaska.

What Is Propulsion?

Propulsion on a cruise ship refers to the system that moves the ship forward through the water. The system typically comprises engines that power propellers or thrusters, the latter of which can improve maneuverability. Cruise ships may also use water jets for finer control, especially when docking or in confined waters.

Brilliance of the Seas’ propulsion troubles meant the ship lost its ability to maintain and adjust speeds for movement and navigation from one port to the other.

This is not the first time a Royal Caribbean ship has faced propulsion issues. In October 2023, Oasis of the Seas was forced to delay a sailing from Port Canaveral due to a propulsion issue, and Radiance of the Seas had to cancel its September 1, 2023, departure on embarkation day due to propulsion issues.

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