On Oasis and Allure passengers do not go to the actual lifeboat stations. In fact you really couldn't put everyone in rows at the boats aboard Oasis and Allure. There isn't enough room on the deck area adjacent to the life boats. Those boats are set up for immediate loading with no need to lower them from above. They just open the doors and you walk on. So - the muster stations are inside the ship as Princess has done for ages. On Oasis I was assigned to the fitness center muster area. We were just a few steps away from the door leading out to our boat.
A point for those cruising on RCI - when the drill happens make sure you have your card in hand and visible. The crew stationed along the travel routes will constantly be asking to see the card so they know you are heading in the right direction. As previously stated, there will be at least one crew member at your station with a handheld scanner.
For ships not using the scanners they do search all cabins and public areas and restrooms to find those who are trying to avoid the drill. RCI employees will put a 'cabin searched' card in the door keycard slot. They usually gather them up before the passengers return but on at least two occasions I've returned to our cabin and found these cards in the door.
It's been a while since I last cruised on Princess but it seems to me they called out cabin numbers at the drill and we had to reply with the number of guests in the cabin, and thus the expectation that those people were present. I may be confusing it with another cruise line's procedure.
What we've been reading since the Concordia disaster is the cruise lines have went back to being serious about muster drills, especially the Carnival brands! Our last cruise was on a HAL ship which ended just prior to the Concordia. I know this is a RCI forum and our next cruise is on a Carnival ship, however we were just wondering if any or all the brands went back to requiring passengers to bring their life vests to the drill?
__________________ "Sea" You, Keith & Rita Ann
Fast dancing is the second best form of exercise, slow dancing leads to the first!
Keith/Rita, we were on a HAL cruise earlier this month and we were instructed to leave the life vests in the cabin for muster drill. I actually prefer it that way -- not because of the bulk, but because I'm more concerned that a previous passenger may have inadvertently messed with it in some way.
Call me a disobedient cruiser, but if the Oasis is sinking, I'm not walking the 1/4 mile to my life boat station. I'm going to trip and fall into the closest lifeboat. If it's good enough for the captain of the Concordia, it's good enough for me!!!