This was my third cruise on Royal Caribbean, my second on Oasis of the Seas.
I'll start with areas I feel could use improvement:
1. Email: Once we booked our cruise, we created an online account to keep track of everything and to set cruise options. However, the amount of "spam" RCI sent was a bit much. We'd get 2-3 emails a day, about sales and things not related to our cruise, we missed the more important emails. I suppose we could have selected somewhere not to get emails, but there didn't seem to be an option to select "cruise related emails only."
2. Sunday ports: I was disappointed when I learned the first port on our trip, Nassau Bahamas, was pretty much closed on Sundays. I'm not sure how cruise companies determine where and when they stop, but I feel this was a big flaw.
3. Photographs: The first day, in the dining room, the photographer came by and we decided against pictures since we were all looking pretty ratty that first day. The More
photographer never came back to our table. Ever. We had to flag one down the last formal night.
3.a. On Deck 5, they do a lot of photographs, especially around the spiral stair case. However they don't stop traffic flow, making for a bad backdrop. At one point I went to the top of the stairs to stop people from coming down (and ruining the pictures below, by the ship's photographer). A cruise employee rudely asked me what I was doing and when I explained, he offered no help. Didn't' call anyone to help. So instead I tried to do what they should have been doing, only to get yelled at by other passengers.
4. Sales: It seems that more and more the cruises are about how much additional money they can get for things. I understand they need to make money, and I know all cruise lines do this, but it seems to be getting out of control.
5. After hours food: I still have issue with the fact that it's nearly impossible to find a healthy snack option on deck 5. You go to an after dinner show, and want a little something. Options are pizza, cookies, cake, A bowl of fruit -- oranges, apples, etc would be so great.
1. The best thing, to me, is the improvement in how they handle gluten-free food. I was pleasantly surprised to see items highlighted on the main dining room menu, things that can be made gluten-free upon request.
1.a. Biggest improvement in this area is in Sorrentos. On my cruise in 2011 I argued with them over the fact that I requested new sauce and cheese for the gluten free pizza crust they offered, and it got to be a heated conversation. This cruise: they had a top-rack oven labeled gluten free; sauce and cheese labeled gluten free; and separate toppings! Huge kudos!
2. Central Park cabin: I wasn't' sure how I'd make out with a room that didn't have an ocean view, but it was great!
Things to keep in mind about rooms on Central Park:Non-smoking. So you can sit out on your balcony and know no one will be smoking!You can hear music in the afternoon from the pool deck above. You can hear music in the evening from Central Park.