Feeling ripped off: Discovery Cruise Review by lorrainefwalker
Overall Member Rating
Feeling ripped off
Destination: Baltic Sea
We got to see Iceland
The coffee was good
The Blue Lagoon was sublime
Our cruise aboard MV Discovery was, unfortunately, the worst cruising experience I have had. My husband, who had never cruised before has been utterly put off the entire idea of cruising again.
Firstly, check in at Greenock seemed to take forever. CMV were very strict about adhering to their "call by colour" process and this meant so many people were left milling around the terminal whilst the ship was boarded with military precision.
As we missed our dinner seating due to the time it took us to board, we were left with no other option than the much over crowded and under stocked lido buffet where we shovelled food down our throats as quickly as possible so that we could attend the mandatory passenger drill.
Our major disappointment was the lack of freely available food. After 8.30pm, your options are either: wait till More 11pm when small snacks were provided in the lounges or pay 9 quid for a tuna sandwich delivered to your cabin. Having cruised with a few different companies, I have never had to pay for room service before.
Entertainment really wasn't up to much either it has to be said. CMV tends to operate with the more mature passenger in mind and we were well aware of this when we booked our cruise. However, we just did not expect quite how mature many of the passengers were and couldn't help but wonder if they really would manage a full life-boat escape if necessary. Entertainment really was targeted towards the octogenarians and, as younger cruisers, we struggled to understand the humour and references being made. Not to say the entertainment team didn't try very hard to make the cruise enjoyable for their passengers but, with many of them being young themselves, I think that even they had a hard time keeping up. We found ourselves rather bored with the entertainment and our only alternative was to get drunk!
Discovery has only 2 lounges to choose from, as well as a couple of bars scattered about. It was very difficult to find anywhere to sit during our sea days (of which we had a 'surprise' one).
We primarily selected this cruise due to its itinerary - we both wanted to see Iceland and finding a cruise that took us there seemed perfect. We couldn't stop at one of the ports which was disappointing but we fully understood the safety reasons for this. The stops made were lovely - we were less keen on Eskiffjordur as there was not a lot to see or do there. We also didn't appreciate so much the cameras being thrust in our faces whenever we disembarked the ship.
We had booked a couple of trips; one a tour of traditional villages and the other to the Blue Lagoon. The first we didn't enjoy so much as I am still unsure of what villages we visited other than a small church, a woodcarving workshop not big enough to fit half a bus load of tourists rather than the 2 bus loads they tried to squeeze in and a stop at excavations of a Viking long house. We were not so happy with the time restrictions put upon us at each stop meaning we really couldn't explore much at all but then the tour itself had a schedule to stick to.
Customer service was non-existent. Staff clearly did not want to be there. Some were downright rude. Few smiled.
Food aboard the Discovery was good on the whole. Not totally amazing but we did enjoy it. We tended to make use of the lido buffet which I referenced earlier as being low on choice. We made use of the yacht club on one occasion which was very nice but when we tried to book again on the third last night of our cruise we were informed that it was closed and we were rather upset about that. We didn't like that we had to eat at a certain time, sit at a certain table and had very little (and very poor) alternative.
The final nail in the coffin was on our very last day. During the night, my hubby got up to use the toilet and on flushing, was met with a horrible noise and was sprayed with water from said toilet. That morning we learned that there was an issue with the toilets on board and staff members were having to flush the toilets using buckets of water. This strategy did not work and the toilets were left with waste filling them. As we had vacated our cabins by the stated time of 8am, there was no other option than to use the public lavatories on the decks. Because of the number of passengers needing to use such a small number of lavatories, the line was massive and because of the malfunctions with the water supply, the smell was absolutely disgusting. Less
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