Jay Schneider, Chief Product Innovation Officer, leads the bold, imaginative and purposeful thinking behind the unparalleled experiences at the heart of Royal Caribbean International. He oversees the product development teams, which focus on creating new concepts, venues and experiences in partnership with in-house experts across architecture, naval and industrial engineering, attractions, food and beverage, entertainment and more. They push the boundaries of what’s possible on Royal Caribbean’s game-changing ships and in the design and construction of its private island destinations, including Perfect Day at CocoCay. The senior vice president also manages the strategy and application of the digital technology in action and to come on parent company Royal Caribbean Group’s cruise lines.
It's the cruise line’s commitment to delivering memorable vacations that drives Schneider and his teams’ work, and at the center of it all is the Royal Caribbean guest – new or returning and of all ages. The teams tap into decades of experience and the latest research that highlights travel trends and what the travelers of today and tomorrow are looking for in a vacation. From concept to reality, each idea is thoughtfully tested, enhanced and scaled to raise the bar from one innovation to the next.
Recent accomplishments for Schneider and his teams include the combination of new and signature experiences on the world’s largest cruise ship, Wonder of the Seas, and North America’s first Quantum Ultra Class ship, Odyssey of the Seas. They are continuing to push the envelope as Royal Caribbean develops new experiences, destinations and ships years into the future, including a revolutionary class of ship that debuts in fall 2023 – Icon Class. The introduction of Icon of the Seas, the first in the new class, will introduce a lineup of never-before-seen adventures and represent the line’s next significant step toward a clean-energy future as its first ship to be powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG).
Since 2017, Schneider has also led the digital transformation of Royal Caribbean Group’s family of cruise brands. His goal has always been to remove the friction that comes with things like paper forms and lines so that guests can enjoy more of their time off. The design of the brands’ latest mobile apps and new features have created a more seamless vacation experience. That includes the early 2020 introduction of Muster 2.0 – the innovation that reinvented the cruise industry’s decades-old mandatory safety briefing. Years in the making, the company’s patented technology revolutionized a process that was designed for large crowds of guests into an easier, more personal experience for small groups.
Spearheading innovation through digital strategy, application development, e-commerce and user experience design throughout his entire career, Schneider has more than 20 years of experience to date. Before Royal Caribbean, he was vice president of Digital Guest Experience at Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, where he successfully implemented the strategy, development and introduction of digital products for guests around the world.
Today, Schneider is also an active member on the boards of Teach for America Miami-Dade and the Memorial Hermann Health System.