After just four years, the Carnival-themed Ubersoca Cruise (USC) has become the largest music festival at sea, according to a recent statement from the team.
Once described by soca star Kees as “the crazy idea that might just work…and it did”, USC will be entering its fifth year after completing two back-to-b back sold-out cruises in November 2019.
This year, Ubersoca welcomed over 7,500 soca lovers from around the world including Australia, Kuwait, Poland, France, Sweden, Japan, UK, US, and the Caribbean. The five-day, four-night cruise on Royal Caribbean’s Mariner of the Seas gave passengers access to over 50 Carnival-themed events including concerts, industry seminars, after-parties, two J’ouverts, formal dinners, sporting activities, and even chef competitions, to name a few. The drinks inclusive experience also included a carefully selected regional menu to complete the Caribbean experience.
Since its inaugural sailing in 2016, over 16,000 people have travelled with Ubersoca Cruise to partake in what can only be described as a bucket list ‘experience beyond the music’. The cruise—which has developed a cult following—now has its sights on its five-year anniversary and plans have already been set in motion for 2020. They’ve announced their official sailing dates for 2020: November 9 to 14 and November 14 to 19. They’ve also confirmed that USC will be hosted on a new ship, have an additional day of sailing and a second destination will be added for each cruise.
Speaking on USC’s growth in such a short space of time, founder Nathaniel Turner, said: “We could barely fill a ship in year one, winged it, for the most part, had the time of our lives and then dared to do it again! Fast forward four years later, USC has gone from the smallest cruise ship charter to being the biggest, hypest and best cruise ship charter on the ocean. It’s humbling to see Soca music (which is scarcely recognized as its own genre), manifest its unrivalled energy and become the biggest theme cruise in the world, bigger than EDM, Reggae, Hip-Hop or any other genre. It truly shows the power of Soca when we come together as family. USC didn’t achieve this alone. We attribute our success to the collective talent and power of our entertainers and their loyalty to the brand and vision.”
Now considered to be the final Carnival event of the year, Turner said that he never expected for the cruise to be placed in the rankings along with the legacy Carnivals of the region and diaspora. “Ubersoca has exceeded our wildest imaginations. We’ve quickly realised that Ubersoca Cruise is way bigger than us! The movement has taken the smaller islands by storm and helped the bigger islands to give their artists the recognition that they have always deserved. Big island and small island artists now use it as a springboard for new music and are able to create and collaborate in ways they’ve never done before.
When asked what’s the best way for first-timers to experience Ubersoca Cruise, Turner replied: “With no inhibitions! There’s no judgment on USC. We are a family that parties together and stays together no matter where we go. Wear a USC hat anywhere and you will realize how amazing and great our extended family is. The beauty about USC is that we are more than just a party cruise, we curate our own industry seminars, DJ classes, exercise classes, comedy shows, sports events, impromptu jam sessions, pop-up elevator fetes, etc. Ice skating on a cruise ship to Soca music is a new norm for us. Next—sky diving!”
RSVP bookings are now open for Ubersoca Cruise 2020. General bookings will be open at a later date to be announced. Visit ubersocacruise.com for more information and follow them on Facebook and Instagram for updates.
—Article written by Ricqcolia Phillip