Royal Caribbean International’s ongoing nine-month “Ultimate World Cruise” aboard Serenade of the Seas will not be transiting the Red Sea and Suez Canal, impacted by ongoing Red Sea tension.

Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas was due to transit the Red Sea during an 18-day Dubai-to-Piraeus itinerary in May. 

Passengers were instead asked to vote on a choice of two alternatives. They were an around-Africa intensive segment or a segment that visits a few ports in Africa but has more Greece and Turkey content and more sea days.

There will be some compensation for taking the revised segment. Those who wish to cancel may do so for a full refund. That applies to those people who only booked the Red Sea and Suez Canal segments. Those on the full cruise or multiple segments may leave the ship for the cancelled segment and get a refund for that.

The 274-night Ultimate World Cruise embarked December 10 in Miami and is due to end on September 10 this year. It is Royal Caribbean’s first global circumnavigation.

Elderly woman passes away

It’s more bad news for the line. It has been revealed that an elderly female passenger recently died while onboard Serenade of the Seas.

Rumours of the death began after TikTok content creator @aditaml2759 said that the voyage “had its first death” on the Ultimate World Cruise.

“Some sad news,” creator Adita said after the ship had reached Los Angeles. “We had our first death on the Ultimate World Cruise. A lady passed away last night. She was an elderly lady, and the reason why I know is because I was coming to my room when they were taking the body out.” 

“I’m thinking it was probably a heart attack. But I don’t have much news other than it was a female elderly patient, or guest, that passed away,” she continued.