We sailed the fist time ever on Royal Caribbean line, as we have always sailed previously on Carnival, Cunard, and/ or Celebrity. This was our first time on RCI, as our friends wanted us to "try" the Mariner of the Seas ( out of Galveston )as they had sailed on the sister ship, Voyager of the Seas previously.
The ship is beautiful, large, and very nice in all aspects. However, We were very unhappy with the boarding problems experienced on 11/25/2012 in Galveston. The staff had zero control and allowed line jumpers, and people just went in the terminal ahead of us that had been in line over two hours prior to the doors being opened.
Once we were able to go on board, we were very impressed with the ship, as I have said, however as we walked around touring the spaces, we were constantly asked to buy a "special cocktail".....which was the first of the "non stop hustle" by the cruise staff... Everywhere we went for the next week, we were asked by someone to purchase something. Even in the main dining room there were "special purchase items" on the menu ?????, - something we have never seen before.
Throughout the entire week, we felt there was a "hustle" by the staff to buy extras, and it simply got very oldvery quickly.
I do not think the rest of the Cruise Industry (Ships) are this aggressive, or at least the Cunard, Celebrity, Carnival, and Uniworld River cruises we have been on, we did not feel the pressure we felt on this cruise. I do not believe we will do any other RCI cruises, as I feel what we pay up front for the cruise and services is all that is necessary, for what we expect to receive. I do not expect, nor do I wish to be hustled every where we went by crew members selling stuff.