Independence of the Seas Cruise Review by Ellyg1824: Lovely Ship but.............
Overall Member Rating
Lovely Ship but.............
Destination: Europe - Western Mediterranean
We sailed on the 16th June on the Indy doing the western med itinerary. Having been on the Indy in Oct 2011 we knew what to expect. We had said we wouldn't go on her again as my parents (one of whom has mobility issues) found it too large. But we liked the ports of call so we took the chance. Having known that the ship is huge this time we took a rollator to avoid having to push the chair on the carpets which could be hard work and thankfully it was a success.
Embarkation - Swift. We'd opted for port assistance and from entering the cruise terminal we were whisked through with dad in a wheelchair and didn't queue for anything and the nice RCI man took us all the way to the Royal Prom. and on disembarkation they took us all the way back to the car.
Cabin - We had a midship E1 balcony cabin which was nice, although as the youngest in the party I had to sleep on the Pullman bed which was a bit scary when we had rough seas !!! Balcony was a good size but not as big as More the Aft one we had in October. Cabin Steward Grace was lovely and couldn't do enough to help.
Dining - We booked a table for six so there was the three of us and a lovely couple who we had a laugh with. We've been very lucky that both times on the Indy we've been seated in the MDR with nice people. The menu was a bit repetitive and limited but the food was ok. The service could have been a lot better and on the 4th night we had to wait 1 hour for our starter which with my dad being diabetic was not ideal so I complained and then the waiters were very surly with us until the last few days when they suddenly became over efficient (tip pending obviously) I understand the volumes they have to serve but you'd have expected more of a well-oiled machine. Wines varied greatly in price.We also ate in Johnny Rockets which had a lovely atmosphere, all smiles and fun!! The windjammer has quite a varied range of cuisines. Italian, English, Indian etc. Lots of Salads and generally something for everyone.
Drinks Package - We opted for the packages but after discovering that they'd changed what you can have on it I cancelled it after one day as i didn't plan on drinking cleaning fluid masked as a house rose. The drinks are expensive but I discovered that frequenting the same few bars and giving a tip as we went along the measures gradually increased. We don't prepay gratuities as we like to reward for good service.
Pool area - We never struggled to get a sunbed. The solarium pool which is adults only was like a bath which as i hate the cold was great. Would have been better if it had been larger as it can get quite cramped. The kids pools looked to serve there purpose.
Public Rooms etc - All were kept very clean and we always found room in the bars to sit. We liked the schooner bar with its pianist and also Olive & Twist for the great views.
Joff & Sophie (Cruise Director & Entertainments Manager) seem to run a well organised entertainments package and we looked forward to the Morning shows they do on the cabin TV. All the staff with the exception of our MDR waiters were fantastic and tried to make sure you enjoyed the experience.
A lot of cost cutting measures seem to be sneaking in. No chocolates on the beds, no coffee in the cabin, no conditioner, fewer towel animals etc. All little things really but the small things count.
Ports - We didn't do any tours we just got off the ship had a wander about, get a drink and just relax. Getting off and on the ship was very easy, no big queues.
Indy is a lovely ship and would I go back on....probably but I think RCI need to look at the price of drinks etc. Also they need to address the menu in the MDR as it really isn't up to scratch. It just seems RCI are scrimping a little too much on certain things that makes me think i'll try a different cruise line next time. Less
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