Excited about our family cruise with our 2 sons aged 12 and 13 we arrived at Station Pier to see the ship for the first time. WOW is looked beautiful, we were so excited and looking forward to our trip to New Zealand. Staff were very helpful when checking in but we were very surprised to see that the majority of the passengers were elderly, needing assistance etc.
On boarding the ship via the atrim WOW it was so lovely, there were a lack of staff to direct you to your room, so a lot of wandering people.
Our stewart Henry was lovely and very helpful, customer service desk staff were also helpful too. We used the stairs most of the time as the lifts were also full of people with mobility issues. Seriously a floating retirement village is an accurate description. We wish our travel agent had advised us that most of the guests were over the age of retirement. Our boys were separated at the kids club which was not ideal as there were not many children on the ship and they found it very difficult to find a friend as they were either too young or too old. We requested that they be kept together but this seemed to be an issue for the staff and was not really accommodated, hence they did not want to return and suck to us like glue. This cruise is not ideal for children, several times elderly guests were very rude to our children and many times they were pushed out the way. Even the balloon drop at the end of the cruise it was all about the elderly guests. All entertainment was mainly geared towards the 65 plus age bracket.
The day before we were to arrive in Auckland, myself and my son became ill with the norovirsus, OMG so unwell, we needed the doctor for medical attention and then we were confined to our room for 48 hours. No fresh air at all. We were contacted several times a day by the nursing staff, one particular could be quite rude. Have they any idea that a family holiday we had saved up for and waited a year to go to was turning in the holiday from hell. A one point my son was vomitting and cry wanting to go home. Some empathy would have gone along way. The only compensation we received was some free laundry for our soiled clothes. I understand being isolated, but we missed two ports and it really took the rest of the cruise to recover. There was a massive outbreak of the virsus and many people become unwell, they had a difficult time of enforcing people to stay in their rooms that were sick.
The ports were wonderful, New Zealand lovely, i would not recommend booking tours on the ship they were very expensive, but plenty of options on shore to pick from. I was surprised that when we were in the dining room we were seated with two elderly ladies, they were lovely but why would they not seat us with another family similiar to ours so we could meet people more age appropriate. Overall the ship is lovely and the staff were excellent, but i would not recommend this cruise to a family with children. It is a cruise for the retirees and it is 100% catered for that age group. We met some wonderful retirees, but many were rude and annoyed by the mere presence of our boys. Very dissappointed...