First and foremost I love cruises.
We had a wonderful cruise on the Queen Mary II in 2006.
The check-in for this cruise was a mess- People wandering around without good guidance except "for go over there and wait until you are called."
At last after approximately 2 hours we were allowed to board. A scant greeting party except for security. I am glad we had cruised before because we knew what to do however for the first time cruisers it must have been confusing.
At last we reached our stateroom. We waited around to meet our room steward but he never appeared. Headed to the Lido buffet for some lunch and found a cramped buffet with people milling around in confusion. OK lunch then back to the room. Luggage arrived promptly. Still no room steward. Don't even find his name in our room.
I noticed that o
I realized our balcony area was dirty and found that some clothes had been left on a shelf.
Still on room steward when we headed to dinner. At least when we returned from dinner we had turn-down service but still had not met our steward.
First night of sleep poor because my "mattress" was like t he deck.
Finally met the steward after requesting a new mattress although it took most of the day for a replacement.
Also requested that the balcony area be cleaned. Finally on day three after two trips and a call to the purser, speaking to the house-keeping officer the balcony was cleaned.
Of course, the housekeeping officer told me that our steward's first priority was to the Princess Grill suites which were located in another area of the ship.
I requested that my shoes be polished and the steward left me a buffer.
The Lido buffet was an absolute mess. Items not in any sensible pattern and poor traffic flow. The first few days fresh berries were provided but they soon disappeared. A request was met with a sigh but produced a few strawberries.
"Code Red" - A noro-virus outbreak was reported and was handled efficiently but a created even more confusion in the buffet.
Dinner was another story-Really good servers but they were obviously frustrated. Items shown on the menu not available without any good explanation. One evening after requesting the cheese course I was told by the head waiter that the cheese I requested was not available because it was for the Grills. I ask why it was shown on the Britannia menu and he brushed me off as if I was a bother. Another night the same cheese but our server went to the Grills to obtain for me.
Several mornings in the dining room I was told that fresh berries were not available and I believed but couldn't understand. Except the morning I toured the kitchen and saw a plethora of fresh berries.
We had to request replacement shampoo, shower gel, toilet paper, etc.
I am afraid that the Royalty of the Seas (Cunard) has fallen to the bean counters of Carnival.