Cruising has long been ahead of the curve when it comes to innovation and as ships return to sea post-Covid, cruise lines are turning to technology more than ever. From wearable technology and virtual assistants, to crowd-reducing virtual muster drills and even an app that lets you ‘shake for champagne’ wherever you are onboard, here’s some of our favourite smart ship technology to date.
The Ocean Medallion from Princess Cruises
Some might say Princess Cruises predicted the future with their invention of a 10p-sized Ocean Medallion device that cuts right down on contact and crowding. The handy innovation is set to come into its own post-Covid, replacing the traditional cruise card with the ability to do everything from monitor the flow of people around the ship for effortless social distancing, to locating friends and family, ordering food and drinks, and even booking excursions and dining. It’s an impressive piece of kit and one we’re set to see more cruise lines take inspiration from over the coming years, we’re sure.
MSC for Me from MSC Cruises
Hop aboard the latest ships in the MSC Cruises fleet, including new arrival MSC Virtuousa, and you’ll experience the megaship through the wonder of MSC for Me, the cruise line’s smart wristband technology. You’ll download an app to your smartphone and receive your wristband either before your cruise or once onboard, then the world – or at least the ship – is your oyster. MSC for Me Chat lets you message friends and family on board without needing WiFi, as well as making it easy to locate the kids around the ship. You can also use the clever tech to book restaurant tables remotely, with a helpful ‘what to eat’ guide lending a hand when it comes to deciding between the countless dining options aboard MSC Cruises ships.
My Holiday from P&O Cruises
Introduced this week, My Holiday from P&O Cruises is described as ‘your very own pocket planner’. The free app is accessed once on board via your mobile or tablet and can be used to personalise your experience with entertainment bookings and dining reservations, join virtual restaurant queues (the dream!), manage existing bookings, view your on-board account summary and to access P&O Cruises’ virtual GP service, Sea Consult. The clever new app is still being developed too, so keep your eyes peeled for more innovations next time you’re on a P&O Cruises ship!
Muster 2.0 from Royal Caribbean Group
Holiday on a Royal Caribbean Group ship this summer and you’ll be amongst the first to experience Muster 2.0, a whole new approach to the obligatory muster drill. Created to better cater to social distancing requirements, Muster 2.0 is a virtual safety briefing accessed through your stateroom TV or via an app on your mobile or tablet. You’ll review all the necessary muster drill information, before making your way to your muster point, where a crew member will be waiting to check you’ve completed all the necessary steps and are safe to sail .
Shake for Champagne from Virgin Voyages
We couldn’t round off our round-up of the best cruise ship technology today without mentioning one which is wildly indulgent amidst a sea of necessity. Shake for Champagne comes courtesy of Virgin Voyages, of course, the cruise line set to shake up the cruise industry with the introduction of some seriously hedonistic holidays when Scarlet Lady finally makes her boujie debut at the height of summer 2021. Download an app once on board and you can order food to your lounger, book exercise classes and track down friends in one of the many bars hidden in her enclaves. But our favourite function of all is the one which sees a glass (ahem, bottle…) of Moët arrive in your hand with a shake of your smartphone. Salut!