We are a 53 and 71 yo domestic partner couple, Robin and Rita, who have been fortunate to be able to cruise seceral times. Most of our cruises have been out of Galveston because we live only 30 minutes from that cruise terminal.
We travel often with our friends Alex and Roger who joined us on the Oasis. Our departure from Houston Hobby on Southwest Airlines was uneventful. Upon arrival we called for our shuttle to Rodeway Inn. The shuttle was prompt and the driver pleasant and helpful. Of course the Rodeway isn't the Ritz but was clean and the price was right. They were also very accommodating in that the restaurant had just closed but the manager let us in and they served us.
After complimentary European style breakfast the next morning, the shuttle to the cruise terminal again was prompt and pleasant. Upon arrival at the terminal, the driver unloaded our bags which were loaded on a RCI cart and away we went anticipating long lines for check in. It was now about noon. WHAT A SURPRISE. Hardly any lines. We were aboard and trying to find our way around in less than 30 minutes.
What a beautiful ship. What a LARGE ship. We had no problem finding a place to lunch and then began our exploration. The signage (sp?) is great. Electronically you can find any place on the ship at any time. The signs are plentiful and easy to use. After exploring for a while we then went to our cabin which was ready and waiting.
We had a port balcony which was large enough for the two of us. COMPLAINT - The only electrical outlet in the sitting area was under the counter. One had to be a contortionist to reach it but no problem as we had brought a power strip with us. YES A PROBLEM - They confiscated our surge protector/power strip saying it was a fire hazard. Then the cabin steward brought us a cheap-o extension cord that probably really was a fire hazard. COMPLAINT - There was no clothes line in the shower. All other ships we have sailed on had the retractable lines in the shower. ACCOLADES - Our room steward was great. We never had to ask for ice,etc. Also we usually had room service for breakfast which was always prompt, warm food warm, cold food cold. Coffee was strong, strong, strong,
We were fortunate to be seated at early dinner with two delightful ladies from New York celebrating their 80th birthdays (they were twins but one would never know it). The first night service was really bad but rather than raise a big stink, Robin and one of the NY ladies waited to speak to our waiter in private. That was his first night on the ship etc. but bottom line was service improved greatly although we had to ask each night for the wine glasses to be removed. The food quality varied. The lamb was superb, the beef passable. Deserts were all great. We tried Johnny Rockets and the buffets which were okay. Breakfast in the dining room was very good.
Enterainment was 10+. Costuming as stunning as you will ever see. We did make reservations to the shows prior to sailing and I would recommend that to all. Our reservations to the Aqua Show was rescheduled and it was all taken care of electronically. Very painless.
Ports of Call - We had been to Nassau before and we just got a cab and went to Atlantis for a while. Cked out the casino, then back on board. St. Thomas - Robin had lived on the island for a few years and visited friends then took the rest of us on a tour. Was nice going places with someone who had lived there. St. Maarten - we did a SNUBA excursion. Mixture of snorkle and scuba. Really good for those of us who love the water but aren't SCUBA certified.
We enjoyed the two sea days on the way back to Ft. Lauderdale. Had time to try/watch the zip line and flow rider and check out places we hadn't seen. I was favorably impressed at the activities on board, especially for the children, tweens, and teens.
Debarkation was as painless as embarkation. We had scheduled a land/water excursion in Ft. Lauderdale as our flight was not until 4:30 pm. Quite interesting and the water part was amazing. What mansions and yachts. Boggles my mind.
Overall, a great sailing. The few negatives were far outweighed by the positives. Even though there were over 5000 guests aboard, I never felt crowded. RCI has done a tremendous job with their terminal in Ft. Lauderdale. Would we sail on the Oasis again. Maybe. Certainly if the prices were a bit more in line with some of the other ships.