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Cruising is back with sailings out of the United States commencing now and out of Canada by February 2022 (our Alaska cruise out of Vancouver is in July 2022).
See below for FAQ if you want to know more about what happened with our events in 2020 and 2021 and how we worked with our guests and cruise line.
First, because it is a vacation – with games!
Second, we love to play games and you do too (hopefully – at least your friends or family do, right?)!
Third, we are not trying to be the biggest event out there. We are just getting together a group of (soon-to-be) friends to play games, go to dinner, do fun stuff, and hang out!
Fourth, we schedule our games! The size of our events allow us to do this, so you do not need to worry about coming on your gaming vacation and wondering when and what you will get to play (see How we Schedule Games, below). You will not spend time hunting around the ship looking for people to play that one game you have always wanted to play.
Fifth, there is a lot to do when you are not playing board games or great places to hang out and do nothing! No need to drive around town (no cars!) looking for something to do or eat – it is all right there (but then, there are adventures out there to enjoy, too)!
Sixth, there are probably lots of other reasons, but we cannot think of them at this exact moment – let us know if you come up with some others!
Yes. There are so many fun things to do. Please check the pages for each event, the Gaming pages, and the FAQ below to get some idea of all the fun there is to have!
If you cannot join us in 2022, be sure to check our website regularly, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Like our Facebook page to stay up-to-date for 2023! We try to have the subsequent year’s cruises scheduled no later than first quarter of each year (so 2023 should be scheduled by the end of March 2022).
We have cruises leaving from both the Pacific Coast and the Atlantic Coast in 2022! We will be looking at more options to keep the cruises interesting in 2023.
Visit the appropriate Royal Caribbean sites below for more information and “What to know before you board” site for more information.
Visit Royal Caribbean’s “Where is the Port of Vancouver” for information on directions, parking, and transportation options.
By car, the Summer 2022 cruise out of Vancouver (Port of Vancouver) is just a couple hours from Seattle; a few hours from Portland, Spokane, and Richland; a day’s drive from Boise, Calgary, and Helena; and a good road trip from Salt Lake City, Reno, Sacramento, and San Francisco/Oakland!
Also, Vancouver International Airport (YVR) is just a little over 20 minutes from the cruise port and you have Seattle-Tacoma (SEA) as a back-up just a couple hours away. Connecting flights between the two airports can be quite cheap and just take an hour.
Do not schedule an early flight home after the cruise!
The cruise ship will give you a disembarkation time prior to the last day, so you will know when to be ready to leave. You can spend your time enjoying a meal or in one of the lounges, perhaps playing a board game!
Remember that it can take hours for everyone onboard a cruise to disembark. Then, you need to get to the airport and, based on the airport, may need to be at the airport hours in advance to get through security. Of course, the cruise ship can be delayed being cleared by customs, which can further push back your time.
Do not risk missing your flight, give yourself plenty of time.
Visit Royal Caribbean’s “What should I pack for my cruise vacation?” for more information on packing and luggage for your cruise.
Summer 2022: Keep in mind that it can be chilly in the evenings and does not get hot on average in Alaska. The southernmost point of your trip will be Vancouver, BC, which has July lows averaging 14.1 C / 57.4 F and highs averaging 22.0 C / 71.6 F.
Be sure to check this link from Royal Caribbean about bringing alcohol onboard the cruise.
If you miss your boarding, you will need to contact Royal Caribbean’s Emergency Travel Team to discover your options.
We recommend that you plan to arrive in the area of the port the night before your cruise to reduce the chance that travel delays could prevent your timely boarding.
Visit Royal Caribbean’s website for details on needed Travel Documents.
Request your passport as soon as possible. If you have waited to within a couple months of the cruise, strongly consider paying a fee for an expedited process. Don’t forget, everything is slower these days!
Information for how to apply for a passport for U.S. citizens can be found here.
Citizens of Canada can find information here about applying for passports.
Mexican citizens can go here (en Español) for more passport information.
Generally, citizens of other nations should check with their foreign ministries.
Visit the Royal Caribbean website for more information on Dietary Requirements. Be sure to note these for each guest during Registration.
See the “Registration for Cruises and Gaming” FAQ above.
Prices for rooms for each Event are on the Staterooms or Rooms Tab on each Event’s Page.
If all rooms have been booked, those prices will be removed until we can secure another block of staterooms.
If we are unable to secure an additional block of group rooms (as the cruise date grows closer, it become harder to do so), there are often non-group rooms still available and we can help with booking those and adding them to the group.
I am a Designer or Publisher, how can I participate? We would welcome a chance to let you play test a new game, present your game during our cruise or share information about your upcoming releases. If you have flyers or other paraphernalia to send, please let us know. We can provide shipping information, since it will need to be sent directly to the ship two weeks in advance.
Contact us at info@GamingBySea.com to discuss how we can make that happen.
I am a Vendor or Exhibitor, will there be space for me? We will not be promoting a vendor space, but please contact us at info@GamingBySea.com to discuss your interests if you are a producer or distributor of specialty products, a publisher wishing to promote a game, or one of our local supporters. We want our guests to return home excited about all of the great games they played on our cruise and patronize the wonderful FLGS (friendly local gaming stores) that have supported them and our event.
Review these FAQ to discover what happened with our events in 2020 and 2021 and how we worked with our guests and cruise line.
As you may know, in response to the pandemic, the cruise lines and many resorts cancelled bookings in 2020.
Royal Caribbean, our cruise provider, acknowledged early on that many of its guests might not be comfortable cruising in 2020 and began offering our guests Future Cruise Credits (“FCC”) for 100% of the cruise fare portion (and refunds for the rest), even if they were past the refund period. When Royal Caribbean, began cancelling its cruises, it either granted a 125% Future Cruise Credit (“FCC”) or a full refund to anyone still booked on the cruise.
Royal Caribbean launched its Cruise with Confidence program in the beginning and we were pleased with how they worked with our guests through all of this and will be using them again in 2021. They had to make a lot of decisions on short notice and work through a lot of refunds, but have been making it happen.
As all of this unfolded in 2020, Royal Caribbean created their “Cruise with Confidence” program to allow guests to make the best choices for them.
This program is constantly evolving, so we will refer you to their website for the latest information:
If you have Future Cruise Credits (“FCC”) with Royal Caribbean, those can be used on our Royal Caribbean cruises, whether you booked with our exclusive travel agency or not.
An FCC can be used to pay all or a portion of your cruise fare (you can make-up any shortfall).
FCC apply toward your initial deposit.
We will have a section in registration for you to provide information regarding your FCC.
Obviously, we do not know. Our first event for 2021 is not scheduled to start until Spring of 2021 (very late – ok, the very last day of spring). And, based on the latest we are hearing about quick testing and vaccine progress, we are feeling confident about our timing.
Royal Caribbean has been working with the US CDC to plan when and how to begin cruising again and, based on what we have seen them do so far, we are confident they will take care of our guests.
Also, CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association) has announced that all cruise members, of which Royal Caribbean is one, have agreed to conduct 100% testing of all passengers and crew prior to embarkation. More details can be found about the steps cruise lines are taking on the CLIA website.
We communicated regularly with our guests, updating them as Royal Caribbean provided information and what our event status was.
Also, we offered our guests three options if they decided they would prefer not to travel (regardless of the original refund policy):
1) A full refund of their Gaming Pass(es)
2) A partial refund of their Gaming Pass(es) and a beautiful Gaming By Sea Shirt
3) A credit for their Gaming Pass for a 2021 Gaming By Sea event of their choice, regardless of its price.
Keep the questions coming…Email us at email@example.com if you need help with anything.