Royal Caribbean Internet Packages: Voom Internet at Sea

Updated

by Marcello

Whether browsing the web, checking emails, or connecting with loved ones back home, there is no shortage of reasons why you might need internet at sea. The good news is that cruise lines have worked hard to make at sea internet faster, more affordable, and more reliable than ever before.

Royal Caribbean’s Internet Packages are advertised as the “fastest internet at sea.” But are they really that fast?

Voom offers two different levels of service. The cheaper Surf package for general web surfing and the more expensive Surf & Stream for video chatting, streaming, and more.

If you’re considering your options for staying connected on your Royal Caribbean cruise, we’ll give you a first-hand experience of what you can expect.

Man on the Balcony of a cruise ship using his laptop

How Does the Internet Work on Cruise Ships?

Before diving into the Voom internet packages, it’s essential to understand how the internet works when sailing out in the ocean.

Internet on a ship is far slower than what you are used to on land. On a cruise ship, you are lucky to get download speeds of 5Mbps – a fraction of the speed you can get on land.

Before getting angry at the cruise ship internet’s high cost and slow speed, it’s important to remember that they really are doing their best. Cruise lines have made great strides in providing affordable high-speed internet connections on their ships.

But the bottom line is that delivering fast and reliable internet service to a moving ship in the middle of the ocean is not easy or cheap.

While sailing, there aren’t any high-speed internet cable lines or line-of-sight transmitters that the ship can connect with. As a result, cruise ships use a costly and complex satellite system designed to connect with cruise ships traveling at speeds of 20 knots through bouncing waves.

When you think about it, it’s pretty remarkable that we have internet access at all on a cruise ship.

Royal Caribbean Internet Packages

Thanks to Royal Caribbean’s Voom service, staying connected on a cruise is fairly inexpensive. The Voom internet on a Royal Caribbean ship provides you unlimited internet access during your vacation.

Royal Caribbean offers two internet packages. So, which internet package is right for you?

Voom-Surf-Package-Details-1
(Image Courtesy: Royal Caribbean)
Voom Surf and Stream Package Details
(Image Courtesy: Royal Caribbean)

Voom Surf Voyage Package

The Voom Surf Voyage Package is the base internet package. It offers basic web browsing, such as internet browsing, email, and social media.

The Voom Surf Voyage Package includes:

  • 24-hour internet access
  • Browse the web
  • Send and receive emails
  • Chat on messenger apps (e.x. Whatsapp, Signal)

Royal Caribbean throttles the Surf Voyage package to keep speeds lower. The package works great for basic web browsing, but if you need access to more bandwidth-demanding applications, you should upgrade to Voom Surf & Stream.

Voom Surf & Stream Voyage Package

The higher tier package Voom Surf & Stream package is advertised as the full internet experience.

Essentially, Surf & Stream has faster internet speeds which allow users to access audio and video streaming onboard.

The Voom Surf & Stream Voyage Package includes:

  • 24-hour internet access
  • Browse the web
  • Send and receive emails
  • Chat on messenger apps (e.x. Whatsapp, Signal)
  • Video chat live
  • Stream movies, music, videos, TV shows, and more
  • Live stream and post on social media

Surf & Stream costs more than the basic Surf package but comes with faster speeds and the ability to stream music, movies, audio, and more.

How Much Does Royal Caribbean’s Voom Internet Service Cost?

Rates for Royal Caribbean’s Voom internet services are always changing.

The price for the basic Surf package is typically around $12.99-$15.99 per device per day, while Surf & Stream is usually around $17.99-$19.99 per device per day.

The above rates are based on buying the internet service for the entire length of your cruise.

If you don’t need internet access for the entire cruise, you can purchase a 24-hour pass at a higher price. On my last sailing, a 24-hour internet pass cost $25.99 for the Surf package and $32.99 for the Surf & Stream service.

The above rates are the standard prices we’ve found when purchasing internet service on the ship. But that’s not the best way to do it!

How to get a discount on a Voom package

Woman on her phone on a cruise ship with tropical island in the background

Royal Caribbean offers significant discounts if you purchase the internet package before your cruise.

The internet packages are cheaper when you buy before sailing to encourage more purchases. So, if you know, you will need internet access on your cruise, definitely pre-purchase the internet package.

Log into Royal Caribbean’s Cruise Planner and navigate to Internet & More to order the Voom internet service.

Royal Caribbean also offers discounts when you purchase internet service for more than one device.

The price of the cruise ship WiFi package fluctuates throughout the year. So check back often to see if there is a price drop. If the price drops below what you paid, you can call the cruise line and ask for the discount. Or cancel and re-buy the package.

Diamond Discount

Royal Caribbean Crown & Anchor Society members who are Diamond or above also get a special discount.

The Crown & Anchor Society discount can’t be used before sailing. So, you will have to wait until you are on the ship to take advantage of the discount.

The discount for Diamond and higher Society members varies between 9.6% to 28.8% depending on the duration of the cruise:

  • 4-night itineraries: 28.8%
  • 5-night itineraries: 23%
  • 6-night itineraries: 19.2%
  • 7-night itineraries: 16.4%
  • 8-night itineraries: 14.4%
  • 9-night itineraries: 12.8%
  • 10-night itineraries: 11.5%
  • 11-night itineraries: 10.5%
  • 12-night itineraries: 9.6%

How Fast is Voom?

Man on the balcony of a cruise ship using his red laptop

Voom internet speeds vary across Royal Caribbean’s fleet. Newer ships tend to have faster internet service thanks to newer technology.

The Surf Package is definitely fast enough for basic internet use, but you will find a noticeable slowdown compared to your internet back home.

Checking email is perfectly fine, but you may find some websites load slower than you are used to. Webpages may take a couple of extra seconds to load, especially if you have multiple pages open at once.

Surf & Stream is significantly faster because it’s not as throttled down. Our speed tests typically show 3-5Mbps download speeds, which is fast enough for streaming music, videos, and audio.

In all, Royal Caribbean’s Voom service works very well for most passengers. We’ve been able to video call, browse the web, and message back home with ease. In our experience, even Netflix works surprisingly well.

When you try to push the bandwidth and latency limits with applications involving video streaming, you may run into issues.

The internet speeds aren’t the same as back home, but considering you are in the middle of the ocean, the internet speeds are great!

Reliability of the Voom Internet Connection

Cruise ship woman using mobile cellphone calling on travel vacation

It can be frustrating to try and access the web, only to find internet connection issues.

Royal Caribbean’s internet service uses satellites to deliver internet throughout the ship. Remember, there are no high-speed cable lines or line-of-sight systems to reach the vessel. When you are sailing, the only access to the internet comes from expensive satellite technology.

As a result, factors like weather and your location can impact the reliability of Voom’s internet service.

Modern Royal Caribbean cruise ships, such as the Oasis-class and Quantum-class vessels, use a faster internet service known as OB3. The OB3 service utilizes a satellite network operating in medium Earth orbit.

Older ships rely on geostationary satellites, much like the ones used for satellite TV services. This older service is slower and less reliable than the newer O3B technology.

The O3B internet service has one substantial downside – it only works between 45° S and 45°N latitude. The restricted coverage means that Northern Europe, Canada, Alaska, and New Zealand are outside the intended coverage area.

Even newer ships need to switch to the older geostationary satellites when they leave the O3b coverage area.

Bottom Line: For the most part, Voom’s internet service is very reliable. Newer ships use the newer O3b satellites to deliver high-speed internet access. But don’t be surprised if you occasionally run into issues, especially during bad weather or outside the O3b coverage area.

Which Voom Package Should You Buy?

Regardless of how you will be using the internet, I recommend everyone purchases the Surf & Stream Package.

The Surf & Stream package is much faster than the throttled-down Surf package and makes for an overall better experience. Even if you aren’t streaming, the faster internet package means quicker load times.

Logging In to Access the Voom Internet Service

Woman on a cruise ship using her phone to take a photo of the sunset

Connecting your device to the Voom internet package is relatively simple. First, enable the WiFi on your device and select the ship’s internet service from the list.

When your device connects to the ship’s internet, your device will open a new web browser. If your device doesn’t automatically open the browser, you can open it yourself.

At this point, you should see the login prompt. If not, visit “Login.com” where you can sign in using the provided password.

You should have an internet connection throughout the ship, but if you lose the connection, first check that your WiFi is turned on, then visit “Login.com” again to sign in.

It’s important to note that the internet might not be available throughout the entire ship. If you have any issues connecting to the internet, visit the help desk.

FAQ

Can I Stream With VOOM?

Yes, you can stream with the Surf & Stream Voyage Package. 

According to Netflix, the minimum internet speed to access the service is 0.5Mbps, with 3Mbps recommended for standard definition streaming and 5Mbps recommended for HD streaming.

In our tests, the Surf & Stream package has speeds between 3-5Mbps. Good enough for streaming HD movies. In our experience, TV shows and Movies take a little longer to load, but you can still watch movies in high-definition.

We also successfully streamed YouTube videos, Amazon’s Prime Video, and Hulu.

Can I Use Voom For Video Chat Services Like Facetime?

Yes, you can use Voom for video calls back home.

We’ve used Facetime, Whatsapp, and Facebook Messenger while on Royal Caribbean. The call quality can be choppy here and there, but nothing that interfered too much.

Overall, the Voom internet makes it easy to connect with friends and family back home.

Can I Use Voom to Message and Make Calls on my Phone via WiFi?

Yes, you can use the Voom internet with messaging apps to make calls and send messages via WiFi. 

We’ve tested Whatsapp, Signal, and Facebook Messenger with no issues. The messaging worked flawlessly, and the voice calls were crystal clear.

Other messaging apps should work just as well.

While connected, Royal Caribbean recommends keeping your device on airplane mode to avoid roaming charges. While in roaming mode, you might have issues sending a regular text message. However, messaging apps still work great.

How Much Does Royal Caribbean Voom Cost?

The Royal Caribbean’s basic Surf package price is around $12.99-$15.99 per device per day, while Surf & Stream is usually between $17.99-$19.99 per device per day.

The price varies throughout the year, but you can usually find deep discounts around Black Friday. You can also find bundled deals when purchasing a Royal Caribbean internet package with a Royal Caribbean drink package.

We recommend purchasing the internet package before your cruise for the best price. The price of the internet service will be higher when you are on the ship. So, if you know you will need a WiFi package on your upcoming cruise, purchase it in advance.

You can purchase the internet package online through your Royal Caribbean account, in the Cruise Planner.

If the price drops after you purchase the package, you can cancel and rebook at the lower price. Or, call Royal Caribbean to have the difference refunded.

Can I Use One Account for Multiple Devices?

Perhaps the biggest drawback of the service is that you can only connect one device. So, if you want to connect your laptop while your spouse wants to connect their phone, you need to pay for two devices.

There is a workaround. If you don’t need full-time internet connectivity, you can use multiple devices with only one connected at a time.

For example, once you finish browsing the web on your laptop, you can connect a phone to the WiFi. The login screen will notify you that you have reached your device limit and ask if you would like to connect to the new device. After you accept, the new device will be connected while the old one is kicked off the WiFi.

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Author

Marcello

I’ve been cruising since I was 11 years old. I love the freedom that cruising provides, meeting new people, and exploring amazing new ships. I love to share my passion for cruising and travel with readers.

2 thoughts on “Royal Caribbean Internet Packages: Voom Internet at Sea”

  1. Hi… thanks for all the information. I was wondering ATT has a cruise package. Would this be better than Voom?
    Thanks

    Reply
    • Hi Karen,

      If you will need traditional calling and texting you will be better off choosing AT&T, as you won’t get that with the cruise line. Otherwise, it depends on how much internet you will be using. Currently, AT&T offers 200 MB for $100. On a five-night cruise or less, Royal Caribbean’s VOOM internet is cheaper. But on six-night sailings or longer AT&T is cheaper, if you are using less than 200 MB.

      Reply

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