Everything You Need to Know about Cruise to Nowhere (Singapore): Part 1

Written by Katherine

October 20, 2021
Last Updated on November 11, 2023

LATEST UPDATE (01 February 2023):

This post was written based on Dream Cruises when it was doing Cruise to Nowhere in Singapore during the pandemic. Dream Cruises has since been rebranded to Resorts World Cruises’ Genting Dream. For a more updated version of my experience on board the rebranded Genting Dream, check out the following posts instead:

20 May 2022 – Genting Dream to start trips from Singapore under the new Resorts World Cruises brand: As quoted from the article on Channel News Asia, Resorts World Cruises would offer complimentary cruise credits of “equivalent value” to all paid affected passengers by World Dream’s cruise cancellations in Singapore between Mar 2 – Aug 31 this year as a “gesture of goodwill”. The credits will be valid from June 15 to the end of March 2023.

Dream Cruises ship turns back to Singapore after Covid-19 case found onboard – This happened two days before our Cruise to Nowhere. How “fun”, especially when I have been waiting for a getaway for the longest time. ( ╥ω╥ ) Lucky for us, we could proceed with the sea-cation. This post is the first of the Cruise to Nowhere series to share our experience onboard the World Dream! ٩(◕‿◕。)۶

What is Cruise to Nowhere (Singapore)?

Cruise to Nowhere refers to the cruise going nowhere but within Singapore’s waters. It was launched in late 2020 for Singaporeans who yearn to travel overseas during this pandemic period. It was supposed to be a pilot programme and was subsequently extended. Cruise to Nowhere in Singapore was to end in October, but it seems like both Dream Cruises and Royal Caribbean will be extending it until the 1st quarter of 2022.

Why Dream Cruises?

You will be wondering why Dream Cruises instead of the Royal Caribbean. We have actually been on the Royal Caribbean before, albeit it was the smaller fleet. When we go on a cruise trip, it will most likely be with our parents since they can enjoy a lot of things on board without us thinking about the itinerary or transport.

Our parents’ feedback on the food wasn’t too fantastic on our last trip onboard the Royal Caribbean. Since the parent company for Dream Cruises is Genting Hong Kong, we thought the Asian cuisine onboard might be more suitable for them. Hence, we thought of trying Dream Cruises to see if it fits them better. Also, taking the opportunity to enjoy a real getaway, just the two of us. Cruise to Nowhere, away from the main island of Singapore. To get a real feel of being away since we cannot travel overseas yet. (。•́︿•̀。)

Dream Cruises World Dream Accommodations

The good thing about Dream Cruises is that it offers their Balcony Stateroom as the basic room in their package. Seems like they are not selling the Interior Stateroom, maybe because of the low maximum capacity allowed? We have no complaints, though. Since it is a cruise to nowhere, I think a room with a balcony will be much better since we can hang out in the room and enjoy the sea breeze, maskless, while on the balcony. ☆⌒(≧▽​° )

At the time of booking, it costs us SGD259 per pax (inclusive of port charges) for a 3D2N trip. At the same price, we most probably could only get the interior stateroom from Royal Caribbean. That’s the bummer, though, ‘cos I do want to go on the Royal Caribbean again if we still can’t do air travel. (#><)

Option to Upgrade via Bidding

We were being offered the option to upgrade our Balcony Stateroom to a Palace Suite via a bidding process. I’m not sure if it’s due to the low maximum capacity. But anyway, apparently, you can indicate the lowest amount you are willing to pay to upgrade. The price shown was starting from an additional SGD255 (per pax). But if I never remember wrongly, the minimum bid was way higher than what they had sent us, so we thought it wasn’t worth it. ┐(‘~` )┌

The reason why many will opt for Palace Suite is because of the following perks:

  • Priority check-in and fast-track security clearance
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi and butler service
  • Premium in-room amenities
  • Exclusive access to the Palace Restaurant
  • Happy Hour with complimentary drinks
  • Set meal entitlements at designated speciality restaurants

You can read about all the perks here. If you are someone who drinks a lot, especially alcohol, and will want to try all the speciality restaurants without thinking about which to go to, you can probably think about taking the Palace Suite. Priority check-in and fast-tracking are not really important now due to the ART process.

MANDATORY Online Check-in

You MUST do your check-in online via the link provided in the Cruise Ticket document, and you can do it up to 90 days before the cruise departure time.

We had an issue doing the online check-in. After a few days, we decided to reach out to support to find out what’s the problem since we had done everything correctly. There is an optional step whereby we can upload a scan of our passport details, and it seems like that was the one causing the error. σ( ̄、 ̄〃)

Anyway, there was no need to upload the passport scan, as we understood from support, so we proceeded without that step, and VIOLA~ All’s good~! (ノ´ヮ`)ノ*: ・゚

MANDATORY COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test (ART)

Also, on the Cruise Ticket document, you will find the assigned timing for the mandatory COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test (ART), which is free of charge for all guests.

Our cruise’s departure time was 9 pm, and our ART was from 1 pm – 1.15 pm. The cruise ticket does not indicate the boarding time, so we were wondering if we had to wait long after receiving our results before we could board the cruise. We did a live chat with support, and they informed us that once the results are out, provided we are negative for COVID-19, we would then be able to board the cruise. NICE! (b ᵔ▽ᵔ)b

The Antigen Rapid Test Process

In case you’re wondering, the ART was done at an outdoor space that is just beside the Marina Bay Cruise Centre. Upon arriving at the cruise centre, a lot of ambassadors were there to guide us to the area for the ART. We have to complete a questionnaire about ourselves (COVID-19-related questions) via an online form accessible by scanning a QR code. Afterwards, we headed to a counter, where they provided us with a sticker name tag with our mobile number that would be used for the ART.

We then proceeded to the ART station. There are quite a few cubicles, and we didn’t have to wait before it was our turn. Considering we had only 25% capacity onboard (which might be less due to a positive case two days earlier), everything went pretty fast. The swabbing was quite fast and definitely not as bad as the PCR test!

Once the swabbing was done, we were ushered to a waiting area to wait for our ART results. We also picked up the programme for the day as well as bottled water if needed. The result typically takes 30 mins to 1 hour to be sent to us via SMS. In the meantime, we looked at the programme to plan out our activities for the next few days. Once we received our negative results, we headed over to this counter to show them the SMS, and we were good to do our check-in! o(≧▽≦)o

Check-In and Embarkation

We headed back to Level 1 to access the main entrance of the cruise centre. Once inside, we did our baggage/luggage check before proceeding to Level 2, where the next stage of the cruise check-in took place.

With our Cruise Tickets ready, we did the check-in at a counter. The counter staff then passed us our lanyard, which carries the pouch for our passport, our room key card, as well as TRACEY, a token you have to wear around onboard the cruise. We then proceeded to the section where we would be seated to wait for our boarding announcement.

After waiting for about 45 minutes, we moved as a section to board the cruise. The first stop was the long-time-no-see passport checking station! They are using the iris-scanning machine, which I thought was cool but seems to be slower than the thumb-scanning machine. I nearly thought the machine was spoilt because it was really taking quite a while, which usually doesn’t happen with the thumb-scanning ones. (¯ ¯٥)

Past the passport checking station, it was a long walk to board the cruise and along the way, there will be ambassadors asking you to do a TraceTogether check-in for World Dream. Upon arriving at the cruise entrance, we were asked to scan our TRACEY, so yes, TRACEY is as important as your TraceTogether onboard the cruise. Have it handy! After that, it was time to get to our room!

Our Balcony Stateroom

As with all cruises, the lifts were fully taken during boarding time, so we opted for the stairs, which were way faster. And then it was a long walk to our room before we spotted a letter at our door. It asked us to approach the Reception counter with regard to our cabin. Hmmmm… (・・;)ゞ Anyway, the staff at the check-in counter previously did mention something to us, but we didn’t catch it. Only when we got the letter did babe and I realise what she was probably saying.

The staff at the reception counter informed us that there is maintenance work going on for the room; hence our room has been changed to another. Okay, to be honest, a bit sus there ‘cos a positive case was on board two days ago, and in my mind, I was definitely thinking that our room was THE ROOM. Haha! (/ω\)

Okay, finally time to showcase our Balcony Stateroom! °˖✧◝(⁰▿⁰)◜✧˖° In case you can’t view the video, you may see the room photos in the Gallery at the end of this post.

Music Credit: Royalty-Free Music from Bensound

Our Room View

Balcony Staterooms are great. We loved to stand outside to enjoy the sea breeze when the cruise was moving. We love to listen to the sound of the waves by keeping our balcony door open. It was a good space to hang out when we had nothing much to do onboard, just stare out into the sea. Cruise to Nowhere, still in Singapore, but still lovely out in the sea.

Anyway, note that the cruise does not keep moving. It apparently will stop at a mid-way point for quite some time; hence during this period, there was no sea breeze, but you can enjoy the vast horizon.

Another thing to note about our room. Our room was a few levels on top of the steamboat restaurant, so when we stood on the balcony, people below would be able to see us. I nearly exposed myself before realising that. (⊙_⊙)

Disembarkation

Our cruise was bound to arrive in Singapore at 9 am, which was early. But in comparison to Royal Caribbean’s 6 am, this timing is so much better as it allows us time for breakfast before getting ready to disembark.

The process for disembarkment was also pretty fuss-free. An announcement was made for everyone to stay in their room until our level was announced since they were doing batch disembarkation. Luckily there’s a balcony, so we could hang out on the balcony while waiting for the cruise to anchor and guests to disembark in batches.

Once It was our turn, cruise staff was also going around knocking on doors to inform guests to disembark so you don’t have to worry if you cannot hear the announcement! Once we left the room, it was just following the crowd to the exit, returning of TRACEY, and check-in using TraceTogether to the cruise centre before reaching the passport scanning station. The whole process was really smooth! (* ̄▽ ̄)b

Bonus Review

We have reached out to support for various reasons. Usually, when it comes to live chat, the response might not be as fast. As we were unsure if our cruise would proceed since a positive case was found two days before our departure date, babe has reached out to support via the live chat function on Dream Cruises’ website. Surprisingly they responded quite fast and answered a lot of our questions promptly. So I would like to give a shout-out to Dream Cruises and give them two thumbs up for this! (b ᵔ▽ᵔ)b

Genting Dream-Related Posts

As mentioned earlier, this is an outdated post about Dream Cruises’ Cruise to Nowhere in Singapore. For a more updated version of my experience on board the rebranded Resort World Cruises’ Genting Dream, check out the following posts instead:

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