For football fans, it all leads up to February, when the champs of the NFL meet in the gridiron spectacle of the Super Bowl. Worried about missing the big game while you're out at sea? Don't. Cruise lines know that, for many people, the Super Bowl is a can't-miss event -- and prepare accordingly. Many even provide food near the screens so passengers don't have to go to the dining room to eat; the onboard atmosphere is such that some people specifically book a Super Bowl cruise.
One note for those who watch the game more for the clever ads than the sport itself: Ships that are using satellite feeds for the broadcast will not show the commercials. The halftime show will still be broadcast, however.
Here is a rundown of what you'll find on a Super Bowl cruise (held February 4 in 2018, February 3 in 2019 and February 4 in 2020):
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Azamara Club Cruises
The game is either shown on the TV near the casino or in the Cabaret Lounge; it is also available in the cabins on sports TV. Special drinks or food might be served, and decorations are put up in the lounge.
Carnival Cruise Line
The game will be broadcast on the big screen at the pool, at the sports bar and at other venues around the ship. Ships might offer beer buckets and other drink specials (including cocktails inspired by each team), as well as complimentary snacks, decorations, trivia and "sailgating" games. If an Elegant Night is normally scheduled for that day of the cruise, it will be moved.
The game (as well as the halftime show) is usually broadcast in the theater on the large screen (Celebrity Xpedition excluded). Special tailgate-style food is served, as well as drinks, and you might see decorations in the teams' colors.
Disney Cruise Line
The line will show the game on all of its ship on its main screen, Funnel Vision, which can be viewed from the upper decks. It will also play at other "tailgate" locations onboard. The line will have game day menu items, as well as sports trivia and giveaways. Parties for children will be held in Vibe, Edge and Lab.
Holland America Line
HAL broadcasts the game onboard and will also throw a tailgate party that includes Super Bowl trivia, games, special food and more.
Norwegian Cruise Line
The Super Bowl will be broadcast on the ships' large venues such as the atrium, Spice H20 and the pool deck, as well as in the pubs and O'Sheehan's. There will also be drink specials.
Oceania ships will carry the game live on all ships except Marina and Nautica. On those ships it will be rebroadcast. On ships with a live feed, there will be a Super Bowl party with pom pom decorations, football flags, crew dressed in cheerleader uniforms and plenty of traditional tailgate food and drink including wings, burgers, hotdogs, ribs, nachos, chips and dips.
The Super Bowl is telecasted across select Princess Cruises ships and can be seen on the Movies Under the Star screen. The cruise line offers "Tailgate @ Sea" parties, complete with favorite tailgate foods and drinks.
Regent Seven Seas
Ships will show the game live when possible, but if the broadcast is at a late hour (due to time differences) or at a time when most passengers are exploring ashore, Regent has the license to do a secondary showing at a more convenient time. Each ship will host a main viewing in the Constellation Theater, as well as run the game on an in-suite TV channel. Restaurants will feature football-themed ice sculptures and decorations, and serve football-inspired food and beverages including burger sliders, Buffalo chicken bites, pizza wedges, loaded potato skins, large pretzels and more.
Royal Caribbean International
The Super Bowl will be broadcast at the outdoor movie screens, various public areas and in cabins. There will also be food and drink specials.
Viking Ocean Cruises
The Super Bowl will be broadcast on all TVs onboard, including those in-cabin.