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HomeCruiseCouple on viral nine-month cruise reveal huge daily WiFi cost

Couple on viral nine-month cruise reveal huge daily WiFi cost

Joshua Terry and Ina Ar sold their car, investments and used savings to pay for the ‘Ultimate World Cruise’.(Getty/Joshua Terry)
A couple on the viral nine-month Royal Caribbean cruise have revealed how they secured half price tickets for the worldwide voyage – only to end up paying nearly $200 per week for onboard WiFi.
Joshua Terry and his fiancee Ina Ar are among thousands of passengers on the global trip which departed Miami in December, making 150 stops in 275 days before its planned last leg in September 2024. The pair, who met in 2020, sold their car, investments and used savings to board the ‘Ultimate World Cruise’, securing a cheaper place on board as ‘back-to-backers’ with 17 individual trips, rather than the full price ticket.
After four months, the Serenade of the Seas has taken in the Americas, Asia and Australia, but also been beset by flooding, alcohol shortages and passenger tension as hundreds of TikTok influencers film the ‘nine month reality show’ on board. Having already shelled out $30,000 (£24,000) each for the trip, however, Joshua and Ina had to take another big financial hit to stay online at sea – as Royal Caribbean’s WiFi costs $25.99 (£21) each day.
Speaking to Yahoo News UK about life on board, Joshua, 34, said he initially thought the Royal Caribbean trip was unaffordable (full single tickets start at £42,462), so didn’t consider booking. As time went on, however, the cruise company started selling mini segments of the trip. Ina said: “They came out with a new one with 17 small legs and then it became the whole cruise, so then we noticed the price is much better than the chunky one booking.”
Joshua Terry and his fiancé on the deck of the Serenade of the Seas as it sailed through Antartica
Joshua Terry and Ina Ar having dinner on the cruise.
Joshua left his job as a comedy club manager and Ina quit hers at an IT company, they packed a suitcase each, and the pair – who’d planned to move house shortly before booking – joined the cruise. Joshua added: “We already got rid of everything and just hopped on the world cruise, so we’re not paying rent anywhere.”
Having booked their journey as 17 individual trips, Joshua and Ina have to pack their cases after each of the 2-4 week segments and check back into a new room. Joshua said: “This is like 17 cruises in actuality, where everything is reset from payments to cards to events so a lot of it’s repeated.”
Royal Caribbean passengers who want to check in online whilst at sea face hefty daily charges, as Joshua and Ina have discovered. The firm’s VOOM on board internet packages charge guests $25.99 per day, and while it is believed there are discounts available for advanced or block bookings, the couple have still had to cough up hundreds of dollars each month in WiFi bills.
Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas docking in north China’s Tianjin Municipality Sunday, April 07, 2024. (FeatureChina via AP Images)
Joshua said he’s requested free WiFi whilst on board as compensation for finding a maggot in his food during one meal, and the phone not working in their room, but only been offered a bottle of wine by Royal Caribbean instead.
Joshua, from Vancouver, Canada, has had to pay the significant WiFi costs regularly on board to post TikToks of his trip, where he’s gained 15,000 followers since boarding. A large number of TikTok influencers have boarded the 960ft Serenade of the Seas – with Josh adding that the constant filming and posting on social media has become a slightly sensitive subject on board.
He added: “There are people on the ship who are like, ‘I hate TikTokers and social media’. They’re here trying to enjoy the cruise, and there are people who are just filming. There was an announcement at one point where a staff member said: ‘We won’t have WiFi, so there’ll be no more TikToks for a bit’, and everyone cheered.”
The couple are considering getting married on the cruise, but due to the itinerary changes, they have not been able to make it happen yet. Joshua also said that, as ‘back-to-backers’ rather than guests who paid for one single trip, they haven’t been invited to all passenger meetings and ‘have definitely been treated differently by Royal Caribbean’.
Yahoo News UK has contacted Royal Caribbean to confirm the prices of internet packages on its cruises.

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