Celebrity Cruises is introducing a new perk for its top-tier returning guests, offering them an exclusive space to enjoy each other’s company and be part of the elite community of most experienced cruise travelers.
Lounge space for a new cocktail hour will be available on all cruises five nights and longer, with multiple gatherings on longer cruises, beginning in January 2024.
The new Elite Cocktail Hour will be made available to all Celebrity Cruises’ guests who have reached the cruise line’s Elite, Elite Plus, and Zenith levels of the Captain’s Club.
This will offer returning guests “the opportunity to be a part of a community of like-minded travelers with whom you can share your experiences onboard,” according to an introductory letter announcing the new benefit.
The new event will begin on sailings in January 2024, though the exact date for starting the gathering on each ship in the Celebrity Cruises’ fleet has not been confirmed and it is possible that different ships may begin the event with different sailings.
The Elite Cocktail Hour will be offered in an existing lounge onboard with venues varying on each vessel depending on scheduling and the number of guests meeting the status requirements to attend. It is possible that different venues may be used on the same sailing, as the event will be offered more than once on each cruise.
Sailings from 5-7 nights long will have two Elite Cocktail Hours, while sailings longer than 8 nights will have three cocktail hours for guests to enjoy. Shorter cruises (3-4 nights long) will not offer the new event at this time.
The Elite Cocktail Hour is not replacing any existing Captain’s Club events, but is in addition to the Captain’s Club Welcome Party, Senior Officer Party, and other exclusive onboard events that give members the opportunity to gather.
Exact locations and days of each event will be detailed in a welcome letter from each ship’s concierge team when guests arrive for their cruise, and will be scheduled from 5-7 p.m. on the selected nights. Drinks are also still available at onboard bars and lounges if passengers prefer not to attend the designated event.
At this time, there are no further details about whether the Elite Cocktail Hour will have any attendance requirements other than having reached the appropriate status for an onboard invitation, such as a preferred dress code, but this is unlikely.
Guests must have reached either the Elite, Elite Plus, or Zenith status with Celebrity Cruises to attend the Elite Cocktail Hour.
Travelers earn “club points” with the cruise line for each sailing they take, with more points earned for higher-class staterooms. Basic interior and ocean view staterooms earn 2 club points per night, while veranda and infinite veranda staterooms are 3 points per night. The number of points earned goes all the way up to 24 per night when guests book the ultra-luxurious, all-inclusive Iconic Suite.
Club members can also earn points by exclusive credit offers and occasional bonus offers. To be rated as Elite status, guests must have earned 300 points, while Elite Plus and Zenith levels require 750 and 3,000 points, respectively.
As is common with all cruise line loyalty programs, each level also has a range of other benefits passengers can enjoy. Priority tender service where available; discounts on drink, Wi-Fi, and photo packages; and complimentary laundry services are just a few of the advantages of reaching higher levels of the Captain’s Club.
Of special note for any cruise travelers interested in these new Elite Cocktail Hours and the other benefits offered by Celebrity Cruises’ Captain’s Club is that the cruise line offers a status match to Royal Caribbean International’s Crown & Anchor Society.
This means that if a cruiser has accumulated significant loyalty with Royal Caribbean but wishes to try out their sister line Celebrity Cruises, they will be granted matching status and will not lose out on the loyalty they’ve already accrued.
This can be a great option for passengers to expand their cruise experience to a new line and still enjoy the luxurious loyalty that comes with frequent cruising.
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