This was our first cruise to celebrate our silver wedding anniversary. For some reason I was unable to book this cruise myself either on the web site or by phone. Persons manning the phones didn't know what they were doing and never phoned me back. I ended up using a travel agent who also had problems. I should have taken this as an omen and booked with another cruise line.
The travel agent eventually managed to book and cruise, flights and transfers with our correct names. We had booked a cabin with a balcony and were very happy with it. It was a good size, with a comfortable bed, good lighting and the air conditioning worked. All the staff on the ship were polite and hard working but very few appeared happy, which made me feel uncomfortable. Most of the shows were very good to excellent. The excursions were also good (but we paid enough for them) and we met some very nice people.
Our first disappointment was that we did not realise just how big the ship was and how many people were on board. It was full. Our first visit to the Windjammer was awful. It took us 10 -15mins to find a seat and trying to get something to eat was a battle. The food in the Windjammer was ok with plenty of choice but it was always busy.
We had pre-booked 6:30pm seating in the restaurant for our evening meals. This was more civilised and our waiter was lovely, however the food was disappointing. It sounded good and was well presented but it was mostly tasteless. No wonder people roughed it and ate in the Windjammer. Breakfasts were a bit better but still the restaurant was too busy.
There were notices on the water dispensers asking people not to directly fill their water bottles but to use the cups provided. This is common hygiene practice. The number of people who ignored this was unbelievable and no staff policed it. Also the staff did not remove towels from sunbeds after 30mins and sunbeds were in short supply.
This was not the wonderful relaxing cruise we had expected and paid for. People we spoke to have told us not to be put off cruising as they were also disappointed with the food and service. They claimed that standards had dropped and put it down to the economic downturn. (Most had been on RC before).
I have been waiting for my customer satisfaction survey which we were told would be emailed to us. I have filled in several forms with our email address and we receive regular email offers. Yesterday we visited our travel agent and I told them this. Apparently they had received a survey from RC which had them puzzled. We think it is ours but the closing date has expired!
So reader if you are looking to book a cruise don't book with Royal Caribbean.