This was our 5th cruise with Royal Caribbean. We've sailed aboard the Mariner, The Voyager and now the Navigator. Each of these cruises were the last week of February out of Galveston.
We were extremely disappointed with the changes aboard the Navigator.
We've dealt with fog issues in the past but this year was the poorest, almost dangerous, debacle I've ever seen at embarkation. They can blame it on whomever they want, bottom line is Carnival was at the other terminal doing considerably better than we were. I don't mind waiting in line. I do mind waiting in a mob with 1,000 folks all trying to squeeze through a single door. I appreciate Anchor tiers. Loyalty should have privilege. However, quietly yelling "Platinum and above" from the door and not having some avenue for those folks to actually get to the door without plowing through the throng was just plain stupid. Ok...you get the idea about embarkation.
We gave our WOW cards to the bartenders at the Bolero bar on deck 4. We gave an extra large tip to our waiter, Rey, on deck three in the dinning room. These three were enthusiastic, friendly, and represented Royal Caribbean well. They were fun to be around. And that's where my compliment ends. In seven days I was asked only once if I'd like a drink while being around the pool. In years past, if I stopped in one place for more than a few minutes someone would ask if we needed something. At the Solarium party I stood next to not one, but two, waiters neither of which budged for twenty minutes. Crazy. It appeared to me that there was some kind of intentional slow down on the part of the wait staff.
All other staff we dealt with we're....present?
It's disappointing that the production shows were drastically "less" than in the past. It seemed to be function of the producers, not the talent. Same with the ice skaters. A couple years ago we were stunned with the awesome production, this year the skaters were great but the rest was...OK. It's ashamed that RC continues to use the same comedians and magicians, They were good, but they are also using the darn near exact same routines we've seen in the past. RC, as it brags about the number of returning cruisers, should realize that us returning cruisers actual remember the shows we've seen,
The Texas Tenors were AMAZING! So was the afternoon show that Chad the magician did on Saturday.
Food...it was fine. We did go to Izumi on Saturday night and really liked it. That was the first meal we were actually impressed with.
Room...we booked late. The only two balcony rooms that were available were both handicapped access rooms. We aren't handicapped but RC went ahead and booked us into the room. Wow! Huge! Obviously not a normal balcony room which we always book, but the extra space was cool. Room attendant, again, was just OK.
I guess that's it. It kinda breaks my heart to have to Rory so negatively. Perhaps RC will consider returning to the same superior level of service we've learned to expect from them. Until then, we're going to try another cruise line.