And I do so as my schedule frequently requires me to be at home on weekends, and so I return time and time again. Each time Monarch gives a steady, and considering the usual prices, superior product on an older ship, with a crew that constantly seems to have excellent morale, but with RCI food that can only be described as mediocre in the main DR and poor in the Windjammer Buffet. As in everything - price paid determines how much the daily food budget can be.
After the usual long wait at MCO for the bus transfer to Pt Canaveral, embarkation is fast and easy with a great and friendly pier staff after you get by a grouchy and unfriendly security force provided by the port authorities.
First lunch is always in the Buffet as DR is closed, and as usual Windjammer food is poor, but hard as it is to believe food at next two lunches was so poor that I left and returned to my stateroom to order off the room service menu. Had breakfast in Windjammer on last morning and it was OK.
I was in a SO cabin - one with a little more room and a divan for seating - always quite nice for very little more money.
Usual safety drill in late afternoon prior to departure, evening welcome aboard party etc., and for me - definitely a "senior" early to bed. I do not have problems with RCI beds although many others seem to as indicated in other reviews.
Next morning their private island of Coco Cay. I don't bother going ashore as I prefer the quiet of an almost empty ship. Same thing in Nassau the following day.
RCI is known for their excellent frequent cruiser program which at Diamond level and above includes a free wine party for three hours each evening and frequent deliveries of canapes to your stateroom, along with complimentary bottles of wine - Diamond Plus - in the DR.
As always on this older ship which is quite well maintained even though it leaves the fleet in April, the morale and helpfulness of the crew is outstanding and it is this high morale found in the Hotel Dept under the direction of John Denton, Hotel Director, which is most probably the reason why there are so many repeaters aboard each cruise.
Guest entertainers were mediocre however the now old and somewhat tired production shows are excellent even though I have seen them too many times previously. Its time for a change and change will come with the Enchantment of the Seas replacing Monarch in April on this same run and which has different shows aboard.
Disembarkation again runs like a clock - smooth and easy. I carry my own luggage and am off the ship like clockwork at 7:30 am on Friday, walk thru Customs etc. and onto the transfer bus which when filled, makes an easy transfer back to MCO with all the attendant problems found with air line travel in this day and age.