We arrived around 12:30 PM used Premier Parking Lot for 11/day instead of the lot near the ship 19/day. That went smooth.
Got VIP check-in thank you AAA travel for arranging that. It went downhill from there. Our cabin 6270 was apparently flooded prior to our arrival. Now why they would put anyone in the stateroom that had been flooded is beyond comprehension. Did they think we wouldn't notice??? Come on guys, really?
So my husband went up to Deck 5 to talk to Guest Relations. The Guest Relations person took our cabin # and said he would send someone from housekeeping. In the mean time we went to the Windjammer cafe (buffet) for lunch. The food was disgusting! No really! I would have gladly ate at McDonalds. I am not a lover of fast food but in this case I would have made an exception. Went back to the stateroom and met a man from housekeeping who told us that the smell was not normal. Really? I could have told you that.
Went back up to Guest Relations and was told to wait until 5:00 PM at which time the manifest would be reconciled and we would get a new cabin assigned. Finally after two more visits to the Guest Relations desk we were moved to 8280. Also as we were moving our own luggage, no one was sent to move it, the stateroom attendant assigned to 6270 finally admitted that there had been a "problem" with water in that cabin. She asked if anyone from Guest Relations arranged for our luggage to be transported to the new cabin? We said no and then insisted on moving our luggage to us. Kiddos for her for doing the right thing!
So we were off to a not so great start on our 5 night cruise to Bermuda. We unpacked and walked around to acclimate ourself with the ship. Dinner service what a hair better but again the food was subpar. One day at lunch there was a foreign object in my appetizer. The head of the waitstaff came over to apologize and tried to explain away the problem by saying that with thousands of people being served something like is this bound to happen! The object was a choking hazard. I completely lost my appetite at that point. We ate dinner on the formal night at Portofinos ($40.00 extra for two) and the food was no different. My crab and shrimp risotto was subpar. I needed a microscope to find the crab. The shrimp tasted fishy.
Food often arrived cold and the steak was grisly and of poor quality. Come on guys really? Selection was poor and the portion size considerably scaled back compared to the Carnival cruise out of Miami five years earlier. We also kept getting charged for the mini-bar in our room. We didn't drink one drop of alcohol on the cruise so we don't know why we kept getting charged. Everyday my husband had to check the bill online and go to Guest Relations to get the bill adjusted.
Manager of Guest Relations called the cabin at 11:30 PM one night. They offered to give us 20% our next cruise but we turned down that offer and settled on $100 on board credit which we used in the gift shops.
We ate at Johnny Rockets ($4.95 pp extra) one day for lunch and found the fried food onion rings and fries acceptable but my husbands chicken sandwich was grisly and disgusting! Chick-Fila would have been better. My burger was cold and tastless! Horseshoe Bay was nice in Bermuda and easier to get to by bus. Hamilton the capital was boring with high end shops and low end shops selling junk. We walked around for a couple of hours to kill time before we left the port.
The ice show that last day at sea was the highlight of the entertainment on board. How those skaters didn't fall more since the seas were very rough that evening. Kuddos to them. Did I waste my money on RC Explorer of the Seas? Absolutely! Would I cruise on RC, absolutely not. The reviews you are reading about this ship that are positive either had a different crew or the people were too drunk to notice.
There are more bars on the ship than anything else. This is how the cruiseline is making money! On liquor baby, liquor. There were A LOT of people drunk on this ship. Bartenders and bar maids everywhere! People were drinking from 6:30 AM until 6:30 AM the next day. Believe it or not there were AA meetings on board. I am sure attendance was minimal. Save your money and take a cruise on one of the other cruise lines, I hear Celebrity is nicer.