Have just returned from a cruise on the Costa Allegra. The ship was a good size and everyone really friendly The cabin was as good as it could be, clean, comfortable, and serviced twice a day. Food was well prepared and we had a varied choice, service was really excellent. The cruise was good value for money, we had a package including airfares for less than $1100.This was a problem as everyone on board appeared to pay a different price and many passengers paid a great deal more than us, the price of the holiday was the main talking point, who got what for what, even the European and British passengers were saying the same. This left some people very unhappy, particularly people who had paid huge prices for the trip months ago. The entertainment crew were fantastic and worked really hard to please, however the cruise director and her assistant only made very rare grand appearances. The Senior staff were cold and unapproachable, at the Captain's cocktail parties it was a joke, I have never seen so many uniforms run so fast to get away from the passengers.It was a case of one quick drink and go, absolutely do not mingle.
The cost of the excursions was unjustifiable,extortionate and prohibitive. People who wanted to do it alone were misinformed misled and made to wait for ages to disembark, We were told transport into towns and tours could not be done alone only on a Costa tour, Even Cunard assist passengers who want to go alone, and their tours are cheap in comparison to Costa, go it alone people were generally treated really poorly, all the shore trips could be done independently and for a tiny fraction of the cost Costa is charging, just get together with other passengers and visit tourist offices before you leave or go on the web, The staff in the tour office have no knowledge of the ports and can give no information at all. The use of the Euro on an Asian route was not practical, US or Singapore dollars would be better,and before you board get some currency for each country you will visit Having done many cruises, I have to say Costa cannot come even close to Star Cruises or Classic Cruises for value and customer satisfaction.
The main complaint was a total lack of information at ports of call, we made plans to visit people in Bali only to find that the ship had at the last minute changed anchorage. When we left the ship in Phuket we could get no information on where she would be the next morning as we were staying on the island over night. We went to a 4 star hotel overnight inc breakfast and got gold seats with dinner to the Fantasea show including transfers all for $40 AUD less than the basic excursion done by Costa, this also gave us maximum time to visit the island. The other big failing of Costa is the price of drinks are they supposed to be duty free. The cost was terribly high, we did get the drinks deal on board. Do not preorder them as they suggest,even then they were still expensive, but the most expensive thing is water, the water on board is disgusting, undrinkable and brown, it discolors clothing and makes tea and coffee taste awful and they won't let you buy it on shore, At 5 Euros a bottle is dearer than we pay for wine in Australia
Would we do Costa again YES but we would now do it forwarned and that makes a big difference