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Rhapsody of the Seas
2018 Best Overall
2018 Best for Cabins
2018 Best for Dining
3.5 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating

By Lisa Cheng
Cruise Critic contributor

Rhapsody of the Seas Overview

When people think of Royal Caribbean, they often imagine mega-vessels with an interminable roster of wow factors: bumper cars, robot bartenders, skydiving simulators and parks so large they could be part of a floating city.

About Royal Caribbean Rhapsody of the Seas


Personalized service and consistent quality in the main dining room and buffet


Entertainment options could be improved; shows amused but rarely wowed

Bottom Line

Comfortable, intimate midsize ship offers a solid choice of amenities

Find a Rhapsody of the Seas Cruise

But, there's much more to the Royal Caribbean fleet than these showstoppers. The 2,416-passenger Vision-class Rhapsody of the Seas isn't the biggest or the flashiest of the fleet, but it does have a lot to offer on a more manageable scale. Activities are aplenty onboard, and there won't be a moment where you're wondering what to do. Active cruisers can tackle a rock climbing wall, fitness classes or a jogging track. Connoisseurs of food and drink can sample wine and cuisine at three specialty restaurants -- or even head to the main dining room or buffet, both of which score high in terms of diversity of offerings and quality of provisions. Evenings can be spent at any of the bars and lounges, sipping hand-crafted cocktails and soaking in music, or at the theater where performers put on nightly shows to packed houses.

Service and consistency are particular strengths on Rhapsody of the Seas -- the result of being a medium-size (and not an overwhelmingly large) vessel. Crew members, from waiters and cabin stewards to the guest services personnel, make an effort to extend their warmest welcome and offer their genuine assistance.

For those who admire ocean views, there are plenty of places onboard to take in the sea breezes -- though not necessarily from your cabin. The ship has just two decks of staterooms with private balconies.

Fellow Passengers

The passenger makeup on Rhapsody of the Seas cuts through a broad swath of people ranging in ages and geographic origins, though when the ship sails to the Caribbean you'll find lots of people from Florida and the Midwest. When the ship voyages through the Mediterranean, you'll find more Europeans sailing. You'll find young couples, families with tots and teens, and retirees on vacation. During school vacation, plenty of school children populate the ship.

Royal Caribbean Rhapsody of the Seas Dress Code

Dress, for the most part, is casual onboard Rhapsody of the Seas. About the ship, passengers roam around in shorts or jeans, T-shirts or summer dresses for most of the day. In the evenings, some people get decked out in their finest -- jackets and ties, flowy dresses -- on formal nights (typically two evenings for a weeklong cruise). Others won't bother with changing from their day wear. The evening dress codes are merely suggestions, in any case. There's no fashion police, though swim attire is not permitted in the more formal public venues. As a general rule of thumb, passengers -- when choosing their attire -- fully embrace the vacation vibe.

Royal Caribbean Rhapsody of the Seas Gratuity

Gratuity is $14.50 per person, per day for cruisers in standard staterooms and $17.50 per person, per day for suite passengers. The amount is automatically charged to passengers' SeaPass accounts, which is then pooled and distributed among the crew. An additional 18 percent is added to specialty restaurant covers and bar purchases, as well as spa treatments. Though not required, some people choose to tip the stateroom steward and the waiters who tend to their dinner table extra -- in other words, the staff who get to know passengers on a one-on-one basis.

Royal Caribbean Rhapsody of the Seas Awards

Cruisers’ Choice Awards

2018 Best Overall
2018 Best for Cabins
2018 Best for Dining
2018 Best for Entertainment
2018 Best for Fitness & Recreation
2018 Best for Public Rooms
2018 Best for Shore Excursions
2018 Best for Value
2017 Best for Value
2016 Best for Cabins
2016 Best for Embarkation
2016 Best for Fitness & Recreation
2016 Best for Service
2016 Best for Shore Excursions
2016 Best for Value
2015 Best Overall
2015 Best for Dining
2015 Best for Public Rooms
2015 Best for Value
2014 Best Overall
2014 Best for Cabins
2014 Best for Dining
2014 Best for Embarkation
2014 Best for Entertainment
2014 Best for Fitness
2014 Best for Public Rooms
2014 Best for Service
2014 Best for Shore Excursions
2014 Best for Value
2013 Best for Dining
2013 Best for Public Rooms
2013 Best for Service

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Royal Caribbean Rhapsody of the Seas Ship Stats

  • Crew: 806
  • Launched: 1997
  • Decks: 11
  • Passengers: 2,416
  • Registry: Bahamas
  • CDC Score: 100
Rhapsody of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.5 4.1
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 3.5 3.7
Public Rooms 3.5 4.3
Fitness Recreation 3.5 3.7
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 3.5 3.4
Service 4.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 3.0 4.2

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