Brave fireys set sail on free luxury cruise after devastating bushfire season

Mar 02, 2020
A total of 3,500 passengers, made up of volunteer fireys and their families, set sail from Sydney on Saturday. Source: Getty.

After months of gruelling work, having given up time with their loved ones and foregone everyday luxuries such as hot food and sleeping in their own beds, thousands of volunteer firefighters have been gifted a free luxury cruise as a thank you for their service.

Cruise company Royal Caribbean announced it would be giving away a total of 7,000 free four-night cruises to volunteer fireys who contributed to the recent rescue efforts across the country, after Australia battled its worst ever bushfire season.

“To acknowledge the bravery and selflessness of our Volunteer First Responders during the recent bushfire crisis, Royal Caribbean are donating up to 7,000 four night cruise holidays onboard our superliner Spectrum of the Seas,” the travel firm said in a statement.

To secure a place onboard, volunteers were asked to submit an application which included 150 words on why volunteering was so important, and more than 12,000 people took Royal Caribbean up on the offer.

Due to the overwhelming response, there will be a total of three free cruises. The first departed Sydney on Saturday and is due back on Wednesday, while the second sailing will depart on March 7. A date has not yet been confirmed for the third complimentary trip.

Many people onboard the ship have shared images and messages of gratitude on social media as they enjoy the well-deserved getaway.

One woman, whose husband volunteers as a firefighter, wrote: “My husband was lucky enough to win a spot on the #RoyalThankYouCruise aboard #spectrumoftheseas by @royal_caribbean_international for Volunteer First Responders in the fires. So very grateful! We’re first time cruisers and oh boy, what a way to begin! The ship, the crew, food, entertainment, it’s all sublime! We’re floating up and down the coast and just enjoying it all! Back Wednesday! Thank you.”

Another person shared a series of images on Instagram which showed volunteer fireys and their loved ones enjoying some downtime on board their ship as they had a go on a surfing simulator.

Spectrum of the Seas was available for the cruises after the decision was made to steer clear of Asian waters for at least three weeks to avoid the coronavirus outbreaks that have affected other cruise vessels, including the Diamond Princess in Japan.

The ‘superliner’, which began sailing in April last year, can hold up to 5,000 passengers and boasts some seriously impressive onboard features including a sky diving simulator, rock climbing, a video arcade, roller discos, bumper cars and trampolines. It also has its fair share of features to interest adult passengers, including a robotic bar, top restaurants and a glass capsule that takes passengers 90 metres above ground for panoramic views of the sea.

Join the community that will get you through the hard times ahead.

Starts at 60 is the community you need when Covid-19 is changing life as we know it. We stick together, help each other, share information and have a whole lot of fun online.

Join for interactive online events, expert advice, timely news, great deals and community conversation.

What do you think of this gesture? Have you ever been on a cruise?

Please sign in to post a comment.
Retrieving conversation…
Stories that matter
Emails delivered daily
Sign up