Having booked this cruise only 6 weeks prior to departure I was extremely annoyed to see their agents advertising the same at over Â£100 less. Having challenged Thomson about this and requested an upgrade they became quite intransigent and obnoxious, although I was prepared to pay a little extra, and stated that the prices vary on a daily basis.
I ASKED FOR THE PRICE OF A DRINKS PACKAGE AND WAS QUOTED Â£240 EACH.
ON BOARD I ESTABLISHED THAT OTHER PASSENGERS HAD ONLY PAID Â£99 FOR THE SAME.
MORAL: DO NOT BOOK A CRUISE VIA A THOMSON/TUI SHOP.
Our cabin for which we also paid an extra Â£39 was tired to say the least. The only chair in the cabin was torn, the tiling around the toilet and throughout the shower had areas of black mold. The handbasin was chipped in places. The capeting was worse for wear. Deck 7 was subject to major works of new carpet installation for the whole of the trip. The whole ship is tired and disgraceful.
The Captain, a Russian was never to be seen except for the Captains night.
The waiters in the Meridian Restaurant were incompetent but polite. Several times we were served with courses out of order although we sat with other guests. All they were interested in was put it down and remove the plate as quick as possible. On the night we docked in SAFAGA we were placed by the window for dinner which had sewage smelling odours wafting from the A/C.
This was making the ladies quite ill and until I created a 'stink'of my own we would have been left there. At my insistence we were moved to a central table.
After returning to our cabin we found that all water to the shower, toilet and handbasin was running a dark brown. I complained immediately and the plumber was sent for who notified his chief officer and then made light of it all saying that the water was safe. After my complaint the whole deck started to complain of the same problem. The water was left to run for a couple of hours but still remained a light brown. The plumber told us that this was the water taken on at SAFAGA from the Egyptian tanks and was probably from the nile.
The Main Reception was disgraceful. They treated every passenger like cattle and were only interested in payment of monies and accounts. At one stage I had misslaid my safe key. They promptley demanded a Â£40 replacement charge. I went into some rage about this and they quickly reduced it to Â£15. However my key was soon found by my wife and they were dismayed that I did not pay at all.
Although the cruise was for 8 days, we were told on the evening of the 7th night that we must vacate our cabins by 9.00am the next morning. This was not acceptable as the cruise was for 8 days and our home flight was not until 19.35pm in the evening. RECEPTION THEN DEMANDED A FEE OF Â£30 to keep our cabin available to us until 16.00pm on the last day. I declined.
Courtesy cabins were meant be available, which could not be booked, and only available at 13.00pm. Small bits of paper were issued at this time with several cabin numbers displayed over several decks and it was a free for all to find an empty one.
During our search I noticed a key left in the outside of a cabin door. I ventured in and quickly shut us into a cabin made ready for new guests.
WE MANAGED TO CHANGE AND GET READY FOR OUR FLIGHT THIS WAY.
After this we sat in the lounge to await our departure slot. Many passengers were complaining about the boat and the service given for departure.
One long term cruiser with Thomson, a lady, said she had been on every ship in Thomson fleet and that this one was the worst she had ever been on. No way would she ever set foot on this boat again, a sentiment given by other passengers.
One physically challenged passenger had paid for the PREMIUM CRUISE PACKAGE which provide additional specialist services fo such travellers. He was forced to carry and hump his own bags to/from the ship/cabin.
TWO FURTHER LETTERS OF VEHEMENT COMPLAINTS ARE THEREFORE WINGING THEIR WAY TO THOMSON, AS WITH OTHERS.
The shows were mediocre and the entertainment on the aft deck abysmal.
Liberties Bar gave the only two decent shows during the trip.
THIS BOAT IS TIRED AND DIRTY AND STAFF ARE INDIFFERENT TO PASSENGERS.
AS A LONG TERM CUSTOMER OF THEIRS, I FOR ONE WILL UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES TRAVEL WITH THOMSON AGAIN.