Self-Service Buffets Are Back on Royal Caribbean Cruise Ships

Self-Service Buffets Are Back on Royal Caribbean Cruise Ships

Royal Caribbean has confirmed the return of the self-service buffet at all vessels starting on April 2, the company announced on its official blog.

“On cruises departing on or after April 2, 2022, Royal Caribbean International will bring back self-service dining in guest-favorite venues on board, including the Windjammer Marketplace, Solarium Bistro, and at private destinations,” their blog reads.

The cruise company will continue to offer single-serve meals that do not require the use of any serving utensils.

“Grab-and-go dishes and single-serving portions will continue as a permanent offering – they have become popular options, and keeping them is among the top requests from our guests.”

The announcement comes just three days after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) removed its cruise ship risk advisory on March 27.

“While cruising will always pose some risk of COVID-19 transmission, travelers will make their own risk assessment when choosing to travel on a cruise ship, much like they do in all other travel settings,” CDC spokesman Dave Daigle said in an email. CDC spokesman David Daigle said in an email.

A representative of the industry said it “demonstrates the industry’s transition back to pre-pandemic operations.”

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According to the CDC, “food and beverage stations may be operated as self-service at the cruise operator’s discretion.”

Distancing should be encouraged by cruise lines by using physical guides to manage passenger movement, providing signage for social distance, and having enough employees to monitor distancing.

Furthermore, cruise lines must provide hand sanitizers at entrances to food and beverage stations, “ensure an adequate supply of high-touch materials (serving spoons, tongs, etc.) to minimize sharing of utensils by many guests, limit seating capacity at buffets.”