As a yearly cruiser and believer that the best bang in the travel industry for your dollar is spent on a cruise, I regretfully have to say that Costa is not on my list of companies to travel with ever again.
While I would say the ship was everything it was supposed to be, and the ports of call were as described and expected. I would still have to say that the Procedure that things happen is far different from any other cruise I have been on and on the very first night of our 10 day trip, knew I would not be happy.
#1 - Departure. We waited 3 hours for 10 people, from Germany, that were late. Our 9pm Departure was waited for and never happened. We didn't get the information until 10:30pm that we would be waiting for them. - We did shove off finally at 11:53pm - right before our first day expired.
#2 - Dining Room. I would commend our waiter and bus service, however we had to teach them how to serv our entire table. We did all agree that one crucial element was More
missing - WATER - having to wait 10 minutes for water after asking for it twice is ridiculous. Granted after being served lunch before we had water..... they did finally have bottled water, which we paid for, on our table every night when arriving at dinner.
#3 - Planning & Activities. Granted this cruise company caters to Europeans, and granted they do things differently out there. I was bored to death most days at sea, and found the activity schedule very displeasing. I mean largely the entire daily events consisted of Dance Lessons and Trivia x 5 a day.
#4 - Shore Excursions. Had a great time at every port! However, you didn't find out what time your excursion was until the newsletter the night before, so if you like to plan your day, and plan shopping, eating and still making your excursion - kindly go to the desk, wait in line, and ask them what time your excursion leaves (they will look it up for you)
#5 - Double Life Boat Drills - True the Concordia ran aground this trip, yet another reason I am turned off by Carnival/Costa, I have been on plenty of 10 day trips and never had to have 2 lifeboat drills. This is just irritating and to be perfectly honest... I did not see anybody retarded enough the whole time to need a second drill, which we skipped.
I would like to add that my first cruise ever was in 1984 on the Carla C', which is a 30,000 Ton Much Smaller Costa ship, and had more fun on that ship than I did on this one.
I have also found that most of my trips on other Carnival Ships, have also been Sub-Par, though this one takes the cake.
I would commend several of the staff for going above and beyond their duties to make us as happy as we can be.
My favorite cruise? Cost Less and was 10x's better. The Celebrity Millennium 2011! Less
Costa neoClassica Cruises to the Western Caribbean