I just recently returned from my third cruise with Royal Caribbean, and although my first two were fantastic experiences, this one was my last. Horrific service from their Guest Services and the main dining room, and poor communication ... Read More
I just recently returned from my third cruise with Royal Caribbean, and although my first two were fantastic experiences, this one was my last. Horrific service from their Guest Services and the main dining room, and poor communication between the company and guests confirmed that I had wasted several thousand dollars on a vacation I can’t even look back on to enjoy. My fiancé and I had almost grabbed our bags and departed the ship when we stopped in Key West, and I truly wish we had.
Boarding the cruise ship has changed dramatically from what it used to be. Now touring the ship and various shops and bars felt like walking through a mall with the most aggressive kiosk vendors of all time. Everyone was shoving some brochure or pamphlet in your face and challenged you to upgrade (if you had already purchased a package) or asked personal questions about your dining schedule to pressure you to purchase food at one of their restaurants. Although I had already made two reservations online for their restaurants, we still got pressured to eat at one of them (of course, for additional charges) nearly every single day. I was even challenged by a worker on the ship of who I made the reservation through and what exact time I had reserved- he kept insinuating that I was lying to avoid making a reservation through him until I felt rude enough to walk away.
Guest Services was horrific. After eating at Izumi (great service there, they appear to be the exception of the ship), I was double charged and my credit card company declined one of the charges. I received a letter to immediately report to Guest Services (although all charges are supposed to go through the final day of the trip..?) – she then proceeded to berate me, and even after speaking with my credit card company on the phone about why it was declined (the full charge was approved, and they proceeded to attempt the charge THREE more times. Of course it’s going to be declined after I already paid the full amount…), she was extremely demeaning and brought me to tears. When I finally asked for a manager or supervisor, one came over to ask if she was okay. Really, Royal Caribbean?
When we were notified that we would be staying an extra day at sea due to the state of emergency in Maryland, the captain noted that all phones and internet would open to make alternate plans for hotels, airfare, etc. When I went upstairs to use the Guest Services phone, she nonchalantly told me to go back to my stateroom to make the call. When I walked back to my room, I was notified I would be charged $8/per minute for the call, and would have to go to Guest Services to use the phone. Upon returning to Guest Services, I waited over an hour in the line that I had already been at the front of for a one minute phone call. Real professional, guys.
The cherry on top of the sundae was the fact security was called on us for a noise complaint by our stateroom neighbors. We had woken up to our neighbors every day, fell asleep to the sound of their teenage kids being loud, and heard every conversation through the door. I thought this was normal, especially for close quarters on a cruise ship, and seldom complained about it. During a rare time that we were in the state room after dinner, they had the gall to call a noise complaint (although a Leanne Rhymes impersonator was belting out Celine Dion in the Centrum). Security arrived and proceeded to complete what felt like a murder investigation in the room, asking personal questions, what were we talking about, how long have we been together, etc. REALLY, ROYAL CARIBBEAN?! To top that off, the matriarch of the family next door put a glass to the door to listen in. Quite lovely.
To complete this dumpster fire of a vacation, we put out our luggage as directed the night before departure. We were then told after waiting over two hours to depart the ship (at 7:30am) that our bags would not be available to pick up until “at least” 9:35. Customs and Border Patrol told us something different, and we only ended up waiting until 8:00.
So thank you, Royal Caribbean. I can look back on the week my boyfriend and I went away to get engaged only to blow thousands of dollars on a vacation we would like to forget. Read Less