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87 Barbados to Transatlantic Cruise Reviews

We found the arrival very easy,straight off the plane on a bus and on to the ship. The ship itself was not my favorite, not easy to navigate around. The seating in some of the public areas was very uncomfortable( the brown sofas in the ... Read More
We found the arrival very easy,straight off the plane on a bus and on to the ship. The ship itself was not my favorite, not easy to navigate around. The seating in some of the public areas was very uncomfortable( the brown sofas in the Squid and Anchor need throwing over board!) The resident entertainment was very good.Some of the guest shows on the other hand went from excellent to awful. The ship was kept very clean and all the staff worked very hard and were very friendly. The food was lovely, we always managed to get a seat or table without any problem. Plenty of places to sun bath ,either quiet or lively by the pool. The cruise itinerary was the reason we choose this particular holiday. We decided to stay on from Southampton to cruise up to Newcastle as it was easier to get home from Newcastle. WERE WE SORRY!!!! From what we heard 600 passengers disembarked, and 400 Tui reps and their family's embarked.( Bearing in mind the average age on the cruise was about 65 and the new passengers where younger ) the lovely cruise was spoiled by the new passengers. They were on for one thing, to get as drunk as possible as quickly as possible, resulting in us not being able to get served for over half an hour at some of the bars and having to suffer drunken behavior from quite a few on them. Not the staffs fault I mite add, purely how fast they where drinking. there were scuffles in the disco and security had to be called. People where also inconsiderate when returning to there cabins.The result was a lot of the original passengers where not very happy. This has ruined the memory of what was otherwise a lovely cruise. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Having cruised with Marella (Thomson) since 2011 we were looking forward to another excellent cruise. We did the same repositioning cruise last year, the only problem then was a squeaking from a ship structure which had broken loose and ... Read More
Having cruised with Marella (Thomson) since 2011 we were looking forward to another excellent cruise. We did the same repositioning cruise last year, the only problem then was a squeaking from a ship structure which had broken loose and squeaked to the movement of the ship, we were in the same cabin this year and it had been fixed. The cabin staff were excellent and helpful as usual, in fact all staff were always smiling and eager to ensure you had an excellent cruise. Our first let down was the standard of food in the Meridian Restaurant for evening meal it was the worst we have ever encountered on a Marella (Thomson) cruise, our first two weeks were an excellent example on how to destroy food examples: rib eye steak tough and tasteless, chicken scallops dried out like crisp bread, veal cutlets you could have soled your work boots with, (totally un-edible could not even be cut with a knife). I had never seen so much food being left on plates, complaints regarding the standard of food was common place all round the restaurant. We were informed, but did not witness that there was an altercation between cruisers and kitchen staff, and apparently eight people were put of the ship in Madeira, if that was the case none was the chef as the food did not improve. Also it normally took two hours to serve three courses, it was not the fault of the staff, but the lack of staff, instead of two waiters and a runner there was only two waiters who were run off their feet. On the third week we decided to try the Lido for evening meal, it was basically the same menu but help yourself, we could not believe we were on the same ship, the standard of food was excellent and cooked to perfection, the only problem was finding a seat as so many cruisers had given up on the Meridian Restaurant for the Lido, The only night the Meridian Restaurant was OK was Captains Night, maybe it was we were only a few tables from the Captain. The second let down was disembarkation it was a total shambles, the first batch of passengers for embarkation was 08.00 the second batch was scheduled for 08.15. The first batch of passengers were still queuing in the stairways at 08.15, add the second batch and we had pandemonium, the lifts were unusable due to total passenger impasse on disembarkation deck, we were stuck on the stairwell for over an hour, it was so bad the elderly and infirm had to sit on the stairs. Unfortunately we have booked a stay and cruise on Marella Celebration for October 2019, will review again when we return, hopefully things will be back to the normally good standard of service we have received from Marella (Thomson). Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
The cruise itself was great. The rooms are large and well appointed, and the food is overall pretty excellent. It's amazing that we were at sea for more than a week, and yet they were still able to provide outstanding fruits and ... Read More
The cruise itself was great. The rooms are large and well appointed, and the food is overall pretty excellent. It's amazing that we were at sea for more than a week, and yet they were still able to provide outstanding fruits and salads. The Thomas Keller restaurant is intimate and outstanding and worth doing at least once during the cruise, and there's no extra charge. The service was very good. It's not the same standard I've experienced on past Seabourn trips. I remember staff throughout the ship would greet me by name, even on a first encounter. That made a huge impression and spoke to a level of excellence. After all, if the staff knows your name, they will remember other things about you too, like what you tend to drink or eat. That leads to anticipatory service - you are offered what you want, before you even ask for it. That level of service seems to be gone on Seabourn. Still, it's outstanding by most measures. The passengers on a long crossing tend to be a different crowd than you'll find on shorter cruises. Frankly, they're friendlier. There's so much time to get to know people, and we really enjoyed the passengers we met. But ultimately our trip was spoiled when my belongings vanished when transferred from the ship to shore in Lisbon. I would find out much later that my luggage ended up being mixed in with other passengers' valuables and put in a taxi. The response to my missing belongings was troubling. At the pier I was placated with false promises of an immediate response. Then in an effort to get me to move along, Seabourn gave me a number to call for help and an email address. No one answered the phone and the automated response from the email told me I'd get a reply within two weeks. No one responded to my requests for information until after I posted publicly on social media after an entire day of silence. Then there was a bunch of blaming of local pier workers, who Seabourn had hired, but then acted like those workers were an entity out of their control or responsibility. In the end, fellow passengers and their travel agent solved the problem of my missing belongings. I spent two days of my three-day visit to Lisbon dealing with the problem, which included meeting with the Portuguese police. Other passengers I met on the Odyssey told me later that they also had problems with wayward belongings. When I heard that I was not alone, I followed up with Seabourn's corporate office, and wrote a personal letter to the company president. I received a we're-sorry-you-feel-that-way response. That's pathetic, and a sign that upper management has no intention of dealing with a very serious security gap. My advice: enjoy the ship, but don't trust Seabourn with your valuables. Carry on and off the ship all of your belongings. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Our fourth transatlantic since 2013, Crystal Serenity, 2014 Seabourn Quest and 2016 Regent Explorer. We embarked in Barbados, easiest we have ever experienced, from arrival at the dock to boarding took ten minutes. Stateroom was ... Read More
Our fourth transatlantic since 2013, Crystal Serenity, 2014 Seabourn Quest and 2016 Regent Explorer. We embarked in Barbados, easiest we have ever experienced, from arrival at the dock to boarding took ten minutes. Stateroom was available ten minutes after our 2.00 PM boarding. We had a stateroom forward on deck four, no balcony but a nice big window. First time without a balcony but we did not miss it on this type of voyage. Excellent bathroom provided with tub and shower. We found a big improvement in the dining over our previous cruise with Seabourn. The Thomas Keller Grill provided exceptional food and service and the Keller influence is followed up in the Restaurant menus which basically has to sections, one Keller Inspirations and the other classics, steaks chops etc. which can be mixed if required. All our dinners were taken in the Restaurant apart from three visits to the Keller Grill and taken from the inspirations menu. The food was well prepared and presented and almost always really excellent. The Restaurant was also excellent for breakfast and lunch. We did not use the Colonnade restaurant or the poolside Patio restaurants. Service in the Restaurant, Thomas Keller Grill was outstanding, this also applied to our cabin steward and the Seabourn Square staff. Service throughout the ship was universally excellent. One complaint would be the quality of the wines provided, drinkable but could and should be higher quality. Entertainment was good for a ship of this size. We watched two shows, Time Rice and the violinist, both very good. The band also played in The Club each night and were excellent with a talented female singer also a trio played in The Club who were also very good. We did not take any shore excursions but did disembark at Porto Santo and visited the town which is a pleasant and clean with a nice beach. Disembarking at Lisbon was delayed somewhat by the customs people who were using sniffer dogs to check luggage apart from that our bus was waiting to take us to the airport and this was handled efficiently. Finally the ship was clean and well maintained and the Odyssey and Quest both have lots of open deck space forward which provides a pleasant area for viewing when entering or leaving port. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
This one fit a particular time frame .We only had the first leg of 11 days . Had never had a chance to take a Seabourn cruise before . Very happy .They couldn't do enough for us .Came up with an extension cord for the C Pap machine . ... Read More
This one fit a particular time frame .We only had the first leg of 11 days . Had never had a chance to take a Seabourn cruise before . Very happy .They couldn't do enough for us .Came up with an extension cord for the C Pap machine . Stocked fridge and bar had a full liter of good vodka .Svedka , I think . Mixers, beer , champagne . Room stewardess was always ready to go . Dinning room had some slow arrivals of food at times . But all the food was excellent .They could cook , fish , steaks , pasta . The Colonnade buffet on the back deck was always good .Pool bars and dining line was a great choice in the afternoon for a late lunch .Open to 3:30 . Used room service for breakfast 4 different mornings . Arrived in 20 to 25 minutes and hot .Transfers booked through Seabourn worked fine , even with a flight delay .They were there to meet us . We got our luggage frisked in Lisbon on disembarkation .The Seabourn Rep was on the spot to assure us we would get a cab to the airport when we missed the main bus with everybody else . Even sent a very sweet Portuguese woman ( cute as a button ) with us to make sure we knew where we were going inside the airport . Actually went in with us . Bar people , deck crew , waiters were all on top of it at all times .Entertainment was very good of what we saw . Did a special afternoon opera segment on the deck with the main show vocalists one afternoon . Pouring Patron Margaritas at the pool .l .All you can eat , drink and no tipping or bar bill at the end . But I did leave a small thank you for the housekeeping girl and a bartender .Not expected though .A great time . The best weather the crew had ever seen on this crossing . Just lucky . Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We were very apprehensive With regards to the trans Atlantic part of this cruise as we thought we would be bored being st sea for so long but were extremely pleased with the amount of entertainment on board such as lectures, classes and ... Read More
We were very apprehensive With regards to the trans Atlantic part of this cruise as we thought we would be bored being st sea for so long but were extremely pleased with the amount of entertainment on board such as lectures, classes and facilities available that in the end there was not time to do everything. The quizzes were very good and my wife joined the choir run by Claire-Marie who was very professional finalising with a concert on the last Friday afternoon with the drama and ukulele groups which was well attended by the guests on board. An overall memorable cruise with special attention given on my birthday aboard the ship without needing to tell Fred Olsen anything. The entertainment team, lecturers and guest entertainers were excellent with a variety of entertainment from opera to song and dance, comedy, and the staff evening was excellent. We also were very impressed with all the musicians on board Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
The cruise was excellent for the food, entertainment, staff, and cabins. But the quality of the AI drinks package was poor. The brands of the drinks were hidden so couldn’t see the bottles but saw the whisky le Valletta never heard of. ... Read More
The cruise was excellent for the food, entertainment, staff, and cabins. But the quality of the AI drinks package was poor. The brands of the drinks were hidden so couldn’t see the bottles but saw the whisky le Valletta never heard of. Ginger ale tasteless out of a cheap plastic bottle. Would not pay for AI again as it would have been cheaper to go on the cruise and buy a few quality brand drinks. Too much ice in them too even when asked for no ice. Shame on fred olsen. The rest of the cruise was very good. The food was excellent in the dining room and the Palms restaurant. The shows were excellent but poor layout of seating. The pools and jacuzzi were nice and warm and plenty of sun beds. Most of staff were very pleasant and polite and helpful. The captain and officers were very friendly. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We thought it would be fun to cross the Atlantic and a 16 day Re-positioning Cruise offers quite good value for money, We flew to Barbados, visited Antigua, Tortola and St Kitts and, after 6 days at sea crossing the Atlantic, stopped at ... Read More
We thought it would be fun to cross the Atlantic and a 16 day Re-positioning Cruise offers quite good value for money, We flew to Barbados, visited Antigua, Tortola and St Kitts and, after 6 days at sea crossing the Atlantic, stopped at Ponta Delgada in the Azores and then called in at La Coruna before docking in Southampton. We had never traveled with Fred Olsen before but had heard good reports from others. We thought the Braemar, a small ship relatively speaking, with just 900 passengers and just for grown ups (i.e. no children) would suit us well. We had lovely weather, pretty calm seas and the staff were delightful and very attentive. Our cabin (an outside one with a picture window) was reasonably spacious and had all the facilities we would expect. Importantly, the beds were very comfortable! When at sea I enjoyed playing Bridge and we liked the Quizzes. Some of the talks were interesting but the selection of films in the cabin was not so good. I thought the extras were very expensive (drinks packages, WiFi and short excursions) and was disappointed with the standard of the entertainment and some of the food, though the Breakfasts and the Food Stations were good. The overall conclusion is, therefore, that we enjoyed ourselves but would not rave about it and would probably choose to go for another P & O cruise next time, as there is a wider age range. Most of those on board were quite a bit older than us (and we are in our early 70's!) and they were - for the large part - loyal Fred Olsen repeat travelers! Horses for Courses, as they say! ps. A note of caution when booking: While the actual cruise is excellent value for money, when you add on additional costs for insurance (more expensive in the Caribbean and USA), gratuities, on-board expenses for WiFi, bar bills and excursions, rail fares, taxis, overnight hotel stays and also - in our case - kennel costs, your outlay is doubled! It is still a lovely holiday but it is too easy to overlook these when making the decision to go! Enjoy! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Done it before twice and as it fitted in with our plans we decided to do it again.experienced many bad issues whilst onboard,all of them reported to the head of the relevant department but on almost every occasion the issues were not ... Read More
Done it before twice and as it fitted in with our plans we decided to do it again.experienced many bad issues whilst onboard,all of them reported to the head of the relevant department but on almost every occasion the issues were not addressed which bothered us greatly to the point were we thought we would leave it until we returned home and then report it to p&o directly but to no avail. Very poor service throughout and not at all what we expect from this company and further to this we feel that the standards at p&o have dropped dramatically over the 16 years that we have taken cruises for our holidays and so we feel that we will probably revert back to land based holidays or other cruise companies from now on. P&o always claim to provide holidays where the passengers would get excellent value for money but this has not been our experience unfortunately. Dining arrangements were not as requested in as much as they had been changed from freedom to first sitting but we did not want this.the meals in the silver service restaurant were pretty average at the best. Entertainment in the main was poor but there were a few good acts. The staff do not appear to have been trained in their positions and also some of them did not know their way around the ship as someone had asked where the toilets were on deck 15 and was directed down to deck 7! Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
From checking in at Manchester the service was excellent. The Dreamliner plane is definitely one of the best I have travelled on. The ship is really good with special mention to the 47 and Gallery restaurants where the food and service ... Read More
From checking in at Manchester the service was excellent. The Dreamliner plane is definitely one of the best I have travelled on. The ship is really good with special mention to the 47 and Gallery restaurants where the food and service were exceptional. The entertainment team worked tirelessly to ensure the passengers had a good time but to point them out would be unfair because the staff over all the ship made the cruise as good as it was. Our cabin steward Nemanja couldn't have done more than he did, nothing was any trouble and couple of minor problems were sorted very quickly. My wife was disappointed with the water and tonic water on tap as she didn't like the taste. The one and only thought for Marella is if they have a dress code i.e. No shorts in the restaurants they should enforce it or don't have a dress code but that would be in my opinion a bad thing as you would be able to dress as you please. After being n a number of Princess and P&O cruises I was a bit apprehensive but there was nothing to worry about we had a great cruise and will travel on Marella again Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We chose this cruise as the itinerary appealed and the price seemed very good value. Having sailed on the Vision of The Seas with RCL, we knew that the Discovery had been the sister ship Vision of The Seas and what the ship would be like. ... Read More
We chose this cruise as the itinerary appealed and the price seemed very good value. Having sailed on the Vision of The Seas with RCL, we knew that the Discovery had been the sister ship Vision of The Seas and what the ship would be like. We've also sailed on the Marella Dream so knew a bit about the Tui format for all inclusive cruising. We booked a junior suite with balcony and it didn't disappoint. The whole organisation from departure at Manchester to arriving on board was smooth and hassle free. The Tui entertainment hosts and staff could not have been more pleasant and the crew were fantastic...everyone had a smile and a hello and it genuinely felt like a very happy ship. Yes, there was an element on board who appeared do nothing but drink from morning until night but each to their own. The enrichment activities were varied and as we were at sea for 6 consecutive days there was time to learn new skills in classes including dancing, ukele and a choir, culminating in a great performance by those guests who participated. We couldn't fault the food and we especially enjoyed the Kora La and Surf and Turf and thought the supplement was justified for the quality. The main restaurant 47 and the Gallery 47 (Italian) always had a great choice and excellent service so no need to pay for the other restaurants if you didn't want to. The buffet restaurant was great for lunch and breakfast but we never ate there at night, although we did try the Glasshouse for pizza and tapas one evening. Entertainment was very varied in places around the ship but we especially enjoyed the professional theatre shows and the two guest comedians as well as a young lady called Rachel who sang in classical style in the Atrium. If there is any criticism it would be to ask Tui not to dumb down on the dress code in the evening. As the cruise went on more and more people turned up for dinner in the restaurant in shorts and were allowed in. I think the professional moaners will always find something to pick at but if you do your research before you book, you can easily work out what to expect with Marella and their different ships. It's not 5 star cruising but it is very good value indeed and the staff work as hard to ensure guests are happy and having a good time as any other cruise line we have been on..... if not harder! We are contemplating another cruise with Marella next year on one of their Asian itineraries. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
The ship itself is lovely ,the passengers mostly french and italian where very noisy and had no idea of a queue, i think for some not all is ,,, just get in front. The food in the restaurants is not bad at all,shame they charge for ... Read More
The ship itself is lovely ,the passengers mostly french and italian where very noisy and had no idea of a queue, i think for some not all is ,,, just get in front. The food in the restaurants is not bad at all,shame they charge for water, the the breakfasts in the buffet is pretty dismal,cold eggs, cold beans, very monotonous, and they seem to close the buffet around 4/5 clock only pizzas thats great if you like lots of dough. We where in a balcony cabin 10 deck and that was about the same as any cruise ship we have been on, only thing was cabin steward was not very obliging, ask for more hangers,his reply ok will be right back, never saw him again, took some mugs down to cabin so we could have a cup of tea in the morning ( took our own kettle) and put them in a draw ,so steward would not take them away. Later found that mugs where missing, which only means he had gone and looked in our draw why would you do that, had no intensions of stealing them, then on last day was dismayed to find we had been charged for drinks we didnt have from the fridge, but we sorted that out at reception. Reception where very good at their jobs ,nothing seemed to bother them always smiling and happy to help. At most ports we had note shoved under door to say the cost of transport was 10 euros or 17 eros when most of the time you could pick up a free shuttle. We thought the shows where very good for international passengers and seemed to folfill the brief except for some very rude passengers who seem to think its ok to have there phones on and snapping away, one even texed all the way through the show ,,why bother coming ????? All in all, would go again on MSC but only from Southampton,, as most passengers seemed to use the ship as a ferry Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This was our first experience on the Breeze since the change of ownership  from Seabourn to  Windstar.  We were catching another ship in Europe for a cruise in the Mediterranean for a month so we decided to do the two week Windstar ... Read More
This was our first experience on the Breeze since the change of ownership  from Seabourn to  Windstar.  We were catching another ship in Europe for a cruise in the Mediterranean for a month so we decided to do the two week Windstar crossing from Barbados to Lisbon rather than fly.  Having read other reviews, we were pleased to discover the ship was not carrying a contingent of workmen contracted to do maintenance work that would interfere with our enjoyment of the cruise. Comparing the different Windstar ships is  like comparing different champagnes.  Each experience is delightful and different.  The unifying overall enjoyment originates from  the hard working and faithful Windstar officers and crew who make every effort to call you by your name and remember little things from how many towels you want in your bathroom to your personal beverage preferences in the diningrooms. Our suite was mid ship on deck 5 and steps away from the circular stairway and the elevator.  We found ourselves spending more time relaxing in our beautiful, spacious suite than on any other cruise.  Our cabin steward provided the highest, most personalized service we have ever experienced on any cruiseline.   She not only kept our suite spotless, she capitalized on our appreciation for creative towel animals.  For fourteen nights she created different amazing animals or humorous creations;many of them were so unique, she became well known throughout the ship because of the photos we shared with other passengers. The quality and variety of food was the best yet of any Windstar ship, including the freshness and taste of the croissants, rolls and breads. The only disappointment was the ship itself which is in need of some major maintenance.   Hopefully many of the things listed below will be corrected when the Breeze goes into dry dock next week. 1.We saw a number of cloudy Thermo Pane windows with broken seals in the  Yacht Club that need replacement. Similarly the aft window frames in the Compass Rose lounge have been  shoddily repaired. 2. Large sections of teak deck on  decks  7 and 8 need major repair/replacement. 3. The swimming pool heater and the broken electronic control panel for the pool swimming jets need repair/replacement. The pool heater was broken for several days making they pool unusable and the Jets never worked at all the entire cruise.  Others aboard ship who boarded the week before us had already complained about the jets .    4. Rusty areas were visible around many windows. As far as the daily schedule, we would have enjoyed having more than just one lecturer to listen to aboard  during the two week crossing since there weren't a many activities offered. We took advantage of the discount for booking a further cruise on board. Although we are had a great cruise,  we both decided that for ocean crossings especially we prefer the Surf for several reasons: the ship is an additional 100 feet longer and with the sails up and lower center of gravity, there is less ship motion; we prefer the location and open design of the veranda on the Surf as well as the amount of open deck space for lounging and waking ; we prefer the location and adjacencies of the public lounges and diningrooms; there Surf offers a much more extensive fitness center, especially elliptical machines. The Breeze only has treadmill machines. Windstar remains our favorite cruise line by far.  We are fond of many crew we have repeatedly sailed with over the decades.  We think the Anschutz Corporation, owners of Windstar, have the right vision and commitment to maintain and improve this amazing fleet of small vessels. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
We are in our mid 50's and cruise quite a lot. Mostly Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and Princess. We chose this cruise as it was a Transatlantic, stopping at the Azures which we have never visited. We still haven't. The day ... Read More
We are in our mid 50's and cruise quite a lot. Mostly Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and Princess. We chose this cruise as it was a Transatlantic, stopping at the Azures which we have never visited. We still haven't. The day before we left I got an e-mail from P&O saying we wouldn't be going to the Azores . Reason they gave was stormy weather affecting their operations. They don't say that in their brochure when they tell you that their ships are so large and technologically advanced that stormy weather is of no concern. I wrote to their customer services asking for a better explanation and also to see if they were considering any form of compensation. They say on the website that they respond to queries within 5 days. Well it's been four weeks now and I have received nothing. Customer care ? - don't make me laugh ! So not a good start. We got on board . The muster drill was at 5pm and we were meant to leave Barbados shortly after. However the captain said we had to wait unitl a delayed plane from Gatick arrived and that turned out to be well after midnight. We tried to get off to go into Bridgetown but were told we couldn't . So a really good first night sitting in Bridgetown port. Air conditioning in our cabin wasn't working. I thought this may be due to the ship being still so I waited till next day to see if it improved. It hadn't so I reported it. To cut a long story short, I had to report this for 8 days running before they actually fixed it. Each day I went to reception to be told it was a work in progress. We had an inside cabin. We couldn't breathe. After 8 days when I finally demanded to be moved or else complain directly to the Hotel director, they managed to fix it. Funny that !. Apart from the air conditioning, the cabin was kept extremely clean by our steward Julius who was an absolute pleasure . Food was similar to what you would get in a works canteen and it was always cold. We ate in one cover charge restaurant, the Glass House and it took over 3 hours to get 3 courses.so beware. Waiters were few and far between and it was impossible to get drinks topped up whilst waiting without going to the bar . The dessert was a disgrace - very stale sponge Entertainment was poor with one exception. The ventriloquist who won New Faces was very good. The four young guys who sang were quite good at shouting, as were the P&O singers ( when they weren't miming ). The enrichment lectures from the criminologist were good but with only an 800 capacity in the theatre and 3,500 passengers, you couldn't get a seat. Why not beam it live into the cabins P&O ? - Oh yes I forgot. You aren't buying anything when you are in your cabin. With no stop at the Azures (- Oh wait a minute - they did stop to let someone who was ill off the ship . Their stormy weather excuse just got even weaker ) we had 8 sea days in a row. Bad for the passengers - good for P&O who used the time to sell, sell, sell They say you get what you pay for - not here I didn't. I won't be using P&O again Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
we have been on this cruise before, however entertainment poor, all the same shows as last year , bands and singers all sang sad songs,people said ;get me out of here;.....NOT A HAPPY SHIP .The comic Peter Piper was good,.singer Benjamin ... Read More
we have been on this cruise before, however entertainment poor, all the same shows as last year , bands and singers all sang sad songs,people said ;get me out of here;.....NOT A HAPPY SHIP .The comic Peter Piper was good,.singer Benjamin Moss has a good voice,but again guests complained about his smutty jokes in between songs.Josh very friendly shame about the others in the show team.Staff in 47 fantastic.but food cold and lots of oil on veg in island on 9th floor ,even oil on top of mashed potatoes,very hard to find healthy option food ,also very underhanded as they knew we were not going to certain ports BEFORE we set of yet did not inform guests,the bar staff could do with more training,I understand they took on alot of new staff.when you think we were all going to the west indies,you would imagine it would be upbeat instead of dire entertainment,something is wrong with the agency that is supplying the entertainment.I would sack them and give the contract to someone else Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
This was our seventh Transatlantic crossing, the fourth with Thomson, sorry, TUI! and about our 25th cruise in total. Previously we've crossed on Celebration, lovely little ship! I shall be sorry to see it go, Azura (P&O) and ... Read More
This was our seventh Transatlantic crossing, the fourth with Thomson, sorry, TUI! and about our 25th cruise in total. Previously we've crossed on Celebration, lovely little ship! I shall be sorry to see it go, Azura (P&O) and Adventure of the Seas (RCL). Flight was great. Travelled Dreamliner Premium Club which is worth every penny of the additional charge. Transfer was OK by Barbados standards but they don't have big comfy buses and its only 30/40 minutes so no big deal. Embarkation was swift and possibly helped by the fact we were in a Junior Suite with priority boarding. First impressions of the ship were good. Thomson, sorry TUI, at last has a ship in style and facilities to rival the big lines. It IS quite impressive! Very spacious and loads and loads of interior light in the public areas. I did note like another reviewer the crew demographic had changed with many Eastern European crew members, but who cares where they're from provided they do a good job and they largely did. We ate mostly in the main restaurant served by two great guys, Julio and Appollon. Ive cruised with many different cruise lines and on all Thomson ships except Dream and without a doubt, the food was every bit as good as any other four star cruise line and better than some Ive travelled on . I often read and have posted reviews myself complaining about cold food but not the case on this ship in the main restaurant where the food was always interesting, varied, well presented and hot. Only ate once in the self service restaurant and my choice was very nice but luke warm. The only minor hiccup came early in the cruise when a waiter who shall remain nameless served us at lunch. Three out of four starters came out all of which were hot so three of us began to eat. We then saw the main courses delivered to the waiter station at the same time as the missing starter. Three of us had finished our starters whilst the fourth was still eating theirs when the waiter came to the table and said he was going to serve the main courses because they'd been there a while. He didn't ask.... he just told us! We declined his kind offer and asked that the main courses when served be replaced having been standing about ten minutes and fish cools quickly. At this point it seemed that we'd asked for the impossible and were visited by Head Waiters, Restaurant Managers and other waiters one of which took responsibility and resolved the problem. Thank you to Anthony! The first waiter never served us again even though he was always close by. Not sure if that was by design or luck but a restaurant needs in my view to conform to common dining etiquette and on this occasion, it didn't. This incident apart, the main restaurant was excellent! Thank you. We like to eat in the specialist restaurants and the Italian was really good and does not incur a surcharge. I cant t say the same for my experience of Surf and Turf for which there IS a surcharge of £25 per head. Previously we've eaten in Mistral and Kora La on Celebration and the al a carte on Majesty. All three are excellent restaurants with a great food in a convivial atmosphere for an additional £20 a head. In the case of Mistral, that's for a six or seven course quality meal served by experienced and knowledgeable waiters. In Kora La on Celebration, you enter an oriental environment with suitably dressed waiters and the food is great. This is not the case on Discovery. The atmosphere and environment is no different to any other restaurant and depending on the time you eat, you have the vast pool deck screen glaring through the windows into your face. Not very oriental! I'm sorry to make the comparison but I'm afraid to do so is inevitable. We cancelled our reservation in Kora La as we found the screen intrusive and would have detracted from the dining experience. For your £25 in S and T, there are four courses and my personal view is that the food was little different to that served in the main restaurant. I chose seared scallops as a starter. It consisted of three small queen scallops which were not seared. Nice but........For my main I chose Sole which was to be served at the table. No fault of the waitress but I'm sure she hadn't deboned many sole. It took an age for her to do so whilst the fish was cooling all the time. Why not ask the customer whether or not they would like the fish to be deboned at the table or would they prefer to do it themselves. I wanted to scream out "Please give it me to do" but I resisted not wanting to cause any embarrassment. In short, S and T was not a good experience, not good value in my view and one I would not repeat in the current circumstances. We did speak to the head of F and B, raised our concerns and made the comparison with Mistral but his response was "Its the new concept" It certainly was different to Mistral and a "difference" I didn't care for! For me, a backward step. It's sad that there are no longer any wine waiters on board. Wine is now very ably and frequently provided by your table waiters but it was a little hint of extra class to have a wine waiter?waitress. I'm sure someone from TUI will read this review and I would point out that my comments are intended for their benefit also and to ultimately improve MY experience. I'm not a serial moaner and have cruised many times and to make comparisons although subjective, is inevitable. I have noted one comment on a review which I also totally agree with and is something we commented on when speaking to those in authority. In S and T restaurant, it was as if I was being served by someone speaking from a prepared script. Each waiter who approached the table started with the same pre prepared script and conversations with them were very stilted.. Ive never experienced this before on a Tui ship. It is unnatural, unwanted by me at least and makes normal conversations difficult. Please let the waiting staff be themselves. They can still say what they need to say. It was so obviously scripted, it became farcical. Lets be honest, Discovery is a nice ship. I didn't see a speck of dirt anywhere, 99.9% of the crew are fantastic. There is plenty of deck space and the sun beds are comfy. Although the bed grabbers were there at the crack of dawn as always, we never struggled to find availability.. I did read another review which commented that two of the six days were rather rough (my description, not theirs) My response would be to say that it was nothing more than gentle pitching and not nearly approaching rough. Have a ride through the Bay of Biscay on a bad day when all the doors are secured and you are not allowed outside at all. That's rough!!! Yes I agree the upper decks were closed for sunbeds on a couple of days but that was for safety reasons to prevent anyone being injured by airborne sunbeds. Yes it was windy, but if you ride a motor bike at 20mph into a 20mph headwind, it WILL be windy!! The ship was travelling at 18 knots (20mph ish) into a 20 mph headwind. Not much that can be done about that. Ive had worse transatlantic crossings but none I would describe as being uncomfortably rough and certainly none where abandoning ship became a consideration!!!. Its a great way to get home without jet lag whilst just relaxing or doing whatever takes your fancy on the ship. We don't do the shows so I cant comment on entertainment. Overall, we really enjoyed our cruise. So much so, we've already booked again for next year on Discovery and I look forward to once again meeting some great people providing a great experience. Thank you. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Our 3rd cruise with Thompson and although we got fed up during 6 sea days we enjoyed ourselves. Food was good and hot and plentiful. Service throughout the ship was excellent with all staff smiling at all times. Drinks package was good. ... Read More
Our 3rd cruise with Thompson and although we got fed up during 6 sea days we enjoyed ourselves. Food was good and hot and plentiful. Service throughout the ship was excellent with all staff smiling at all times. Drinks package was good. But entertainment? The team doing the quizzes etc were good but not as good as on the Majesty. But the theatre shows were awful. I have never seen as many people walk out if shows as happened here. They seem to be changing the shows to attract a younger crowd but the customers on this cruise sat open mouthed and only gave a smattering of applause. One night was called "legends". This consisted of playing videos of dead stars such as John Lennon singing Imagine while the shoe team danced around on stage. In the whole show the team only sang about 3 songs. It was dreadful and frankly embarrassing. Whoever at Thomson came up with these ideas for shows should be made to sit in the theatre and watch the audience reaction and see how many people walk out, not just on one night but night after night. Thomson use to lead the way in entertainment but not any more. I can guarantee that mine won't be the only review to point this out. Overall a good cruise but let down badly by the new shows. One more point is we were told that a member of the Temptations was going to be on board and be performing but he never showed and there was no explanation. Finally this was described as a "comedy cruise" . we had a comedian for one night in week one and a singer/ comic for one night in week two. Hardly a "comedy cruise". Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Let me start by saying this was our honeymoon cruise and the first cruise my wife and I have ever been on, so I don't have another to compare it with,my views are as I found it. OUTWARD FLIGHT. This was from Birmingham direct to ... Read More
Let me start by saying this was our honeymoon cruise and the first cruise my wife and I have ever been on, so I don't have another to compare it with,my views are as I found it. OUTWARD FLIGHT. This was from Birmingham direct to Barbados on the 787 dreamliner. This was an amazing experience, what a beautiful aircraft, roomy, plenty of entertainment on board and the seven and a half hour flight passed in no time at all. TRANSFER TO SHIP. Once the baggage was checked in at Birmingham, you don't see it again until it is placed outside your cabin door! so this was excellent. The 40 minute transfer from Grantly adams Airport to the ship was done on a coach that I honestly thought the gearbox was going to fall out of the floor at any moment! Each downward gear change was completed by an almighty CRUNCH! Very amusing! SHIP Spotlessly clean, very well maintained, easy to move about, plenty of lifts, two jacuzzi's (outside) an indoor and outdoor pool, a spa room, a photographic studio and a gym. The ship also has an excellent medical/hospital facility as I found out when I unfortunately suffered quite severe motion sickness and dehydration. A real good doctor, and nursing staff. The ship has 11 floors in all, be careful which lift you get in though, as not all lifts cover all floors. My wife is registered disabled, and had no problem moving around the ship, we noticed several people in wheelchairs and using various walking aids with seemingly no problems, which is a credit to the ships layout. The only fault I could really find was that on the forth floor, where you have two bars, a theater and a restaurant there is NO TOILETS what so ever! and I do mean the entire floor including the bars/restaurant/theater, you had to go up or down a floor, which is really an astonishing over-sight! CABIN Our cabin was on the second floor number 2552 which was an outside cabin (not a standard inside) It had plenty of wardrobe space and draws, a two seater settee, a nice sized TV which was on a bracket that could be pulled out and twisted, a good make-up lit up dressing table, good use of mirrors, a nice sized bed which was fairly comfortable. The shower/toilet room was a little on the small size, expect to make close personal friends with the shower curtain which stuck to you as soon as you touched it when wet! The room had good ceiling lighting and a nice touch was the overhead bed light strip and individual spot/reading lamps and wall bedside lamps both sides, which could be switched off either side of the bed. We had a lovely big window with a totally un-obstructed view of the sea just above the bed, it was lovely. Just one minor point though, on entering the room you will find a bottle of water, a small tub of pringles and a chocolate bar! my first though was "how thoughtful" but read the onboard booklet when you enter the room because you will find at the back of the booklet if you use the items you will be charged!! DINING AND DRINKING. We were on an "all inclusive" package, which I believe in July will be the standard. "all inclusive" covers the majority of drinks and available food but not all. I have two major issues with the package, the first one is, bottled water is NOT INCLUDED in the package, this means when you want bottled water you have to buy it. This is a cheap trick Thompson, here we were on a transatlantic cruise in hot temperatures, even in April, and was being charged for a basic essential such as bottled water. (The ships water contained chlorine which by law, it has too. personally I wouldn't drink it from the taps, and anyway, it's not really cold) Fancy an ice cream? you can get a free one between 12 noon and 2pm, otherwise again, you pay for it. Drinks not included in the package have a tiny (note tiny) * against their name, so you need to be careful on this one however, when ordering such a drink, you should be told by the server, that the drink is not included and you will be asked to sign for it, as it will go onto your ships account. There are many different bars with different themes. Some very relaxing, others have live entertainment, some have a disco. Finding something to your liking shouldn't be difficult. You will be offered on your first day a "drinks upgrade" which would in fact, cover all your drinks onboard, but I thought it was a ridiculous price and very unlikely worth the additional cost. Also be aware "all inclusive" is only from 10am to 2am, outside of these hours all drinks are chargeable. Dining. The "islands" restaurant was a buffet style, which served breakfast, launch, afternoon tea and evening meal. Breakfast had a good choice of traditional full English, as well the continental type. The chief was also on hand to whisk you up an omelette of your choice. Dinner had a good selection of food and good variation from day, to day. Afternoon tea was very English, with scones, cream, jam, sandwiches and cakes. Evening meal also included a varied and wide selection of choice each day. A surprisingly big selection of tea's where on offer including the good old English, Yorkshire tea, as well as decaff tea and coffee throughout the day. Like all buffet style food, it's never really hot, but the plates were kept warm, and I noticed food regularly being temperature checked and replaced when out too long. I thought the food was actually quite good, and better than most buffet style you find in hotels. "The snack shack" open from 07:00 - 10:30 and 11:00 - 18:00 is great for chips, burgers, fish bites, hot dogs, your general "junk food", but it was tasty. Sit down, or grab and go the choice is yours! "Gallery 47deg on deck 5 is a waiter serviced Italian restaurant. I had the Lasagna. I have to be honest and say, if you are in anyway a connoisseur of good Italian food, you are going to be disappointed by this place, my Lasagna had the consistency of a suet pudding! but whilst on the subject of puddings though, the tiramisu consisted of 3 small glasses of different variations and styles of the desert, which in fact, were lovely. So there you go! "47deg on deck 4 is also a waiter served restaurant, with a la carte menu, but as we didn't get around to trying this restaurant, I can't comment on it. Both this and the one on deck 5 is free to use, on the all inclusive package. "surf and turf restaurant cost £25.00 a head. Kora La, an Indian restaurant, costs £19.00 a head. The Sushi bar is also a restaurant which is chargeable to your ship account. Non of these restaurants were tried, so again, it would be unfair to comment on them. Fancy a fancy coffee? then the coffee bar is for you, but note it's chargeable to your account. (untried). ENTERTAINMENT If you are feeling lucky, or wish to be parted from your money rather quickly, there is a casino you may wish to try. If you are expecting West end shows with big household name's you are going to be extremely disappointed. The ship has a great theater with stepped up seating from row to row, so you can see the stage from anywhere you sit. The ships entertainment team but on two shows a night (choose whether you want to go to the early or later show there both the same) each night had a different show on for example songs from the musicals, former rock star legends, a medieval show (very funny) operatic, dance shows of various kinds. The show team I found, were talented, and eager to please, with good voices and dance routines well choregraphed. great costume design and set, along with excellent lighting, sound system and special effects made each performance give a professional feel to it. My only thought really was, once you had seen three shows and was familiar with each performers individual talents, the only thing that changed from night to night was the actual show they did, but maybe that's a bit harsh on the team who were very enjoyable to watch. There is a piano bar with a good player and a reasonable voice, a great saxophonist, a good lively group called B12, another good group were "vitality." there was a disco bar, occasional karaoke, a moonlight outdoor cinema show, throughout the day there was quiz shows. Generally there was something going on somewhere on the ship both day and into the early hours. ACTIVITIES Well, where do I start, a climbing wall, a mini golf course, a room where you have to solve puzzels to break out within an hour, dance classes, learn to play a ukulele, a gym, a running track which covers the perimeter of the ship, four laps and you've done a mile! a shuffle board, slot machines, games room, there really is something for everyone. SERVICE This is where this ship scores massively. Everyone from the chambermaids who clean and tidy your room twice a day, the general cleaners who clean the public area's, the bar staff, the waiters, even the senior ships officers and the captain himself all greet you with a big smile, a cheery "good morning/afternoon/evening/night" everyone who is part of this ships staff, whatever roll they provide are a credit to Thompson's. Now I am aware, people have commented differently, but I can only say as I found. Everyone seemed perfectly honest, wanting to please, and willing to go that extra mile to make your stay as enjoyable and comfortable as they possibly could, and I do mean literally all staff. PORTS AND SHORE EXCURSIONS We boarded in Barbados then went to St Lucia, Antigua, Funchal, Malaga, Ibiza and our journey ended in Palma Majorca. At each of the stops a varied program of excursions were available, the excursions team were happy to explain about each event and most important to us, the suitability of it taking into account my wife's disabilities. At a lot of the ports they even had a free bus which would take you into the center of the resort and make return journeys every hour, a lot of people took advantage of this preferring to do there own thing, rather then stick to a set pattern. I feel I must point out one thing. When we were in St Lucia, non of the organised events were suitable for us grabbing a wheelchair, I decided to take us for a little stroll a few blocks beyond the port. We walked through a shopping center and onto the street. This seemed a poverty stricken shanty town. We were immediately hassled by locals wanting to take us places or buy there cheap unattractive gifts. We crossed a road onto another even worse looking area, we only good a few yards when we were stopped by a local woman police officer who showed us her ID card she said and I quote, "It's not safe around here, I would strongly advise you to turn back" seeing the frightened look on my wife's face she said "don't panic, I'll walk you back to the shopping center from there you can go back to your ship" we needed no second invitation. Thomson's do your home work, if you know an area isn't safe then warn people about it please. DISEMBARKATION This was some sort of sick joke. The night before you were given luggage labels and told to put your name, cabin number and return flight number number on it, you were also given some vert sticky security tape to stick over the zip opening of your case, and leave your case outside your cabin by 3am so it can be removed by the departure staff. Well when we got off the ship in the morning, all the suitcases were outside in a big parking lot. Now different flights had different coloured labels, but three different flights had the same colour code! Now there was 1'600 passengers on this ship, a heck of a lot of labels had been ripped off or fell off moving them, the departure crew didn't seem to know what was happening and couldn't direct people to where they thought their case might be, it was absolute chaos and confusion. SUMMARY This was possibly not the best cruise to pick for our very first cruise experience. Crossing the Pacific ocean at 18.5MPH taking 6 whole days at sea without stopping of course, seemed like a romantic honeymoon dream. The reality was very different, at times the Pacific can be choppy, especially at night. Some parts of this cruise were indeed good, others parts left a lot to be desired. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This was our second cruise with Thomson having been on the spirit last year gave me the bug to book another one. We travelled with my sister on her 1st cruise. The Discovery was a much bigger ship and easier to get around. Disappointed ... Read More
This was our second cruise with Thomson having been on the spirit last year gave me the bug to book another one. We travelled with my sister on her 1st cruise. The Discovery was a much bigger ship and easier to get around. Disappointed that when at sea for 6 days due to wind sunbeds where not available on upper deck and everybody thought it a good idea to fill every spare space on lower deck blocking walkways etc and making it very difficult at times for individuals able bodied not to mention those with mobility aids. Unlike the previous post we attended every show on the later slot and would say each show was fully attended and thoroughly enjoyed, there was only one which I was disappointed with was the penultimate one which I found boring.The show team worked very hard to out in these productions and their professionalism came through. The cabin and ship were kept very clean and the staff around the ship were always friendly. There is a bar on deck 10 which is very understaffed especially on sail away's and should be looked at. I would say that there seems to be far to many guests to the ratio of staff, and they are very stretched at times. The open seating which has been introduced for meal times didn't really work for us. comparing it against my last cruise the service was very slow and we had to keep asking for a top up of drinks. On a number of occasion we were sat in a corner near the kitchens and felt like we had been forgotten. Although I must add that the food was excellent. The entertainment throughout the day for us was a little on the overload with quizzes etc, and some of the live entertainment was a little too much especially the saxophone man and the acoustic guitar around the pool. A little soft music would have been nice once in a while rather than live music. There were two fantastic live groups Trinity and B12 whom my sister and I thought were fantastic. Given all the above good and not so, this has defiantly not put us off travelling with TUI/Thomson as we met some incredible people who we hope we will meet again in the future and had a truly memorable experience. I hope Thomson will take the comments made and where improvements can be made on board they do so for future guests to enjoy. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Flight out Manchester to Barbados, great on Thomson Dreamliner. Embarkation smooth with no Drama. Ship looked stunning, and we were looking forward to our first cruise with Thomson, after they procured this ship from RCI. We are seasoned ... Read More
Flight out Manchester to Barbados, great on Thomson Dreamliner. Embarkation smooth with no Drama. Ship looked stunning, and we were looking forward to our first cruise with Thomson, after they procured this ship from RCI. We are seasoned cruisers, and were looking at whether Thomson were to be a competitor for P&O In the UK market. The price we paid was reasonable alone, as well as the free upgrade to AI drinks. Well here goes, We had a decent cabin on deck 8 which was classed as a deluxe interior. Cabin 8023 was assigned to us when we were on board. Plenty of space and well kept. The only negative was that the pool area was above , and you were waken by the noise of the pool or fellow holidaymakers claiming and marking their sunbed as their territory. Please note no fridge. Ronaldo the cabin steward a real credit to Thomson. The ship itself is the smallest we had sailed on, but no dramas, and held herself well in some stormy conditions on the 6 day crossing. Bars were plenty and the theatre and facilities were ok. Gym small and half the equipment not working. Bars, our favourite was the venue, but was spoiled by some really poor cheesy entertainment. Bar eleven was nice too and was open till 0300. Drinks, reasonably priced, although we were AI. The drinks package was fine and wine by the glass was available with meals. Just watch the heavy sales pitch to upgrade to Premium. At 80 quid each person for the 13 nights to upgrade to premium it looked worth whilst. Covers all drinks and brands including craft ales.....the selling point for me. The disappointment was that most drinks including the ale ran out 2 days out to sea, and each bar does not stock the same drinks so its a little hit and miss. Cans of mixer are covered in the package as well as bottled water in cabin and speciality coffee at the coffee port. All in all worth the money. Well done Thomson. Dress code was lax, with anything goes. Most people did make the effort though. Food simply was poor in buffet, but good whilst seated in 47 degrees on deck 4.The free Italian in 47 gallery on deck 5 was brilliant. Snack bars ok and Barbeque on pool deck really good. Speciality dining is expensive. Excursions very expensive...do your own. Same with money exchange...poor rates. So far so good......now the entertainment......dismal. Mostly local on this cruise and usually the theatres where dance shows, the teams tried hard but not every night. In madeira a singer comedian from Wigan was on....ok best describes his efforts. The venue was all about trivia games and quizzes, very crude in parts and aimed at adults only...not in good taste and cheap, poorly managed rubbish. The local singer and band at best average just. This was the last winter cruise and the ship was now taking up its summer port and itineraries from Palma, so the crew were flying home with us, as with the entertainment team. Cruise ending, means you leave out your luggage on the last night, its collected and then you reclaim it on the dockside when you disembark. You then load the coach and join the check- in race. Loaded onto a cattle truck and flew home. The 2 hour flight home felt longer than the 8 hours out on the Dreamliner. Really poor here. Palma airport very busy and the walk to the departure terminal long. To be fair still good value for money all in all. Attention to detail will get Thomson there. Thanks for reading my honest review... Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
All started well and a great flight from Gatwick to Barbados, with an upgrade and flight on the Dreamliner the holiday started well. Reaching Barbados and straight off the flight with a short journey straight to the ship, a ... Read More
All started well and a great flight from Gatwick to Barbados, with an upgrade and flight on the Dreamliner the holiday started well. Reaching Barbados and straight off the flight with a short journey straight to the ship, a disappointment not to see more of Barbados. An overnight cruise to St Lucia and day one of a nice sunny day although the island didn't really tick boxes. Another overnight cruise waking up in Antigua, a much nice port but after booking the bike ride which took all day and wasn't really worth the money straight back onto the boat without seeing much of the shops. Onto the 6 full days at sea crossing the Atlantic Ocean, not Pacific as one other couples review I've read, the Pacific which I cruised in 3 years ago was a far nicer experience. 2 days out of four were horrendous crossing the Atlantic, one night thinking we were going to be abandoning ship! I had my reservations of doing this crossing but didn't think for one moment it would be as bad as it was. 6 days at sea with very little to do even walking around the top deck in high winds was near on impossible. Once reaching Maderia I was wanting to kiss the ground, oh boy what a joy!!'t Another full day at sea and at last there sun bed gate where staff were preventing you from using the sunbeds on the top deck. Malaga, Ibiza and at last Palma and the very welcomed flight home. I couldn't fault the staff who were always helpful and happy. I had a problem getting my head around an all inclusive holiday thinking all meant ALL!! Not on this cruise having to upgrade a drinks package at the cost of £160 which included more than just the house wine, water and coffee, absolute joke and it still didn't allow ALL wines!! Food was plentiful my favourite restaurant being 47, the buffet restaurant at times was full and difficult to find a seat. Surf and Turf was a wonderful experience although you have to pay a premium, the staff were extremly nice, helpful too. The captain spoke and made announcements daily or at least until we reached Maderia from then on he seemed to lose his tonge, I wondered if this had something to do with leaving the port 1.5 hours late, it would have been nice to hear a thank you and goodbye on our last night! Unless you don't mind being enclosed with very little to do, not seeing land for 6 days, I certainly wouldn't recommend this cruise! Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We checked in at Gatwick and flew by Dreamliner to Barbados. We were taken directly (the hold luggage is taken directly to the ship) from the aircraft to the Ship, so no immigration or collecting baggage at the airport. Check in at the ... Read More
We checked in at Gatwick and flew by Dreamliner to Barbados. We were taken directly (the hold luggage is taken directly to the ship) from the aircraft to the Ship, so no immigration or collecting baggage at the airport. Check in at the port was seamless and efficient. We had an outside cabin on deck 3 which was spacious and comfortable with a large picture window. Only downside if any was there was no fridge, otherwise lovely. The ship was brilliant. We prefer this freestyle type cruise and this was excellent value for money. I was slightly apprehensive after reading some reviews, however we experienced no problems whatsoever and indeed it exceeded our expectations. If you want formal, luxury type of cruise then maybe this isn’t for you although you’d have to pay a lot more on Cunard or other providers. We bought the drinks package which was well worth every penny. Good house wine and drinks whenever you wanted them. Prosecco flowed freely. The food in the buffet was our favourite. The quality and choice was amazing and we never failed to find something tasty to eat. There was a roast at lunch and dinner in addition to a speciality menu ie Greek, Turkish, Chinese etc, perfectly cooked and a choice of vegetables and salads. Soup was delicious and every day there was a traditional British pudding, including various sponges, spotted dick, fruit crumbles all served with lashings of custard as well as other deserts to choose from. The pastry chefs excelled and the cakes at afternoon tea were a delight. We also ate in 47, the formal dining room which was very nice and you could eat any time during their opening hours and choose to share or have a table for two. We also ate at Gallery 47, the Italian restaurant, also very good. We treated ourselves and ate at the Sushi bar, which was a supplement of £13.95 and well worth it if you enjoy sushi and sashimi. The cruise was for 13 nights with six days at sea and our stops were at St Lucia, Antigua, Madeira, Malaga, Ibiza and then we flew home from Majorca. I can’t comment on the Thomson excursions as we arranged our own using advice on Trip Advisor etc. I was concerned about spending six days at sea, however the entertainment lead by Ted and his team was varied and interesting. We particularly enjoyed talks by ex police officer Simon Dinsdale, cookery, and ice carving demonstrations. Dance classes, Ukulele lessons and choir lessons were also available along with quizzes and numerous other forms of activities. A first class gym with modern equipment and Yoga and Pilates classes too. The climbing wall was challenging and fun to do. Some of our fellow passengers did have various complaints but they were mostly niggly little things that wouldn’t have bothered us. Ie they thought the sea was choppy. Sun beds always appeared to be an issue, although we always managed to find somewhere to sit and it wasn’t a big deal for us. For two days there was quite a swell, however to my knowledge no one was sick and in fact I’ve experienced much worse on previous cruises, and I expected worse considering we were in the middle of the Atlantic. Apparently though most Atlantic crossings are very smooth and there’s not a lot anyone can do about the weather. The staff were friendly and helpful, special mentions to Rosmic, our cabin steward, Denny for excellent and friendly service in Bar Eleven, Alasdair the DJ for great music. Kamal at the omelette station in the buffet and all the other staff, who always had a greeting and remained cheerful. I would definitely recommend Tui Discovery . We’ve already booked for next year! Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We chose thomson for our first cruise as we were told they were a bit more relaxed, adults only, all inclusive and not too big a ship! I don't want to repeat previous reviews so will try and add bit that were relevant to us .. our ... Read More
We chose thomson for our first cruise as we were told they were a bit more relaxed, adults only, all inclusive and not too big a ship! I don't want to repeat previous reviews so will try and add bit that were relevant to us .. our Cabin was 8026 which was big and had a balcony with sunbed (just one!) - and a table and two chairs, there was tons of storage - we didn't use all the shelves, lots of hangers in the wardrobe, plenty of storage in bathroom. There was good lighting to put make up on and dry hair. Our cabin steward Herald was very thorough and due to our cabin, we had Clarins toiletries that were replenished as we needed them, and a couple of treats through the week - Temple Spa sleep mist, and two other sleep products. The beds were very comfy, we had twin beds and both have bad backs and didn't suffer which was a first. We had taken ear plugs as had heard that there could be some noise - we were below the sun bathing areas so sometimes heard them putting the sun beds out early in the morning - no other noise though. We ate in the Islands for breakfast the first couple of days but then once we tried 47 waiter service, never went back - there was a great selection on offer along with different cooked items each day. We thought the portion size was perfect and as it was waiter service, everything arrived hot. Lunchtime - we tried the Islands which always had a good selection, the Glass House had a small salad bar but with odd things to go with them, filled rolls or a joint of meat (which wasn't for us) - we had sandwiches from the Snack Shack on a couple of occasions and they were nice and fresh. Our favourite lunchtime place was again 47 for the Waiter Service .. there was a great fresh salad bar where you chose what you wanted and they chopped it up and added a dressing, there was always a burger available (which was really tasty), jacket potatoes we had a couple of times .. and then a choice from the menu for 3 courses if you wanted - the fish pie I had one day was just amazing! Dinner, again we tried the Islands once and that was enough for us, we alternated between 47 and the Italian where we had great food in both - beware with the Italian, they bring you a plate of fresh anti pasta while you order, and we ended up eating that and then being full! - they did some amazing tomato and chorizo soup with croutons. We found the red wine a bit hit and miss between the restaurants as we weren't keen on the one in 47 or the Italian, but the white was really nice - and the red wine from the other bars around the ship was nice. We booked Surf and Turf and the Kora La as soon as we got on the ship, before we even went to our cabin as it was my birthday while we were away and we wanted a nice restaurant for that night. We actually went back and booked both again before even trying them - and we were glad we did. The first time we went to Kora La - we had the most amazing beef penang - and had that the second time too .. the dessert the second time was called yin and yang - and is the best dessert I have ever tasted! The steak on the first night in the Surf and Turf wasn't the best, but the second time was gorgeous - luck of the draw I think. We hadn't told anyone it was my birthday but they brought us a 'happy birthday' tiramisu which was a lovely touch. We paid extra for the wine in the Surf and Turf, but that was £14 for a gorgeous South African red, well worth the money. The staff were just lovely in both restaurants and hugged us on our second visit - they are all so friendly. We tried a coffee from the Coffee Hut (can't actually remember what it is called) - but didn't waste our money again, they made a nicer latte in the atrium, and it was included. We tried a few different cocktails and had some nice gin and tonics - we paid extra for a smoked cocktail in Bar 11 on my birthday, and on the last night - these were great fun to watch being made and were really nice. We thought about adding to the All Inclusive drinks package but to be honest we're glad we didn't as there was enough of a selection included. We went to see the Comedian the first week - he was very funny, and the Operatic duo who were quite good, but we didn't get to any other shows. We went to the Live lounge a couple of times to see all the Bands having a jam session and that was great fun .. we had a good old dance to those, and then carried on upstairs at Bar 11. We were going to go and watch one of the movies on deck but it was the same evening as the BBQ and they overran each other which was a shame. It did always seem a bit to blowy at other times. The days we were at sea we went to listen to the talks that were given by an ex-police officer (I can't remember his name sorry) - but he was very interesting and entertaining, would recommend. I don't know how some people can say that the staff weren't friendly as our experience was totally different - everyone we passed smiled and said hello, from maintenance upwards (they may have been told to do this but whatever they've done, it has worked) - we also didn't have any problems getting served at the bars, and the girls walking around the atrium bar taking orders were pretty quick too. The days we did manage to sunbathe, there was a guy going around the deck taking drinks orders which we got quickly too. I don't think we are cruise converts - we would do one again at some stage, but would not personally do this one again .. we did know that we were going to be at sea for 6 days but it did seem far too long when we actually did it. We will do a shorter cruise in the future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We were attracted by a very reasonable price and to visit both Caribbean ports and Mediterranean ports in one cruise. We were dubious about whether we would like 6 days at sea, but thought we would give it a try. Flight over to Barbados ... Read More
We were attracted by a very reasonable price and to visit both Caribbean ports and Mediterranean ports in one cruise. We were dubious about whether we would like 6 days at sea, but thought we would give it a try. Flight over to Barbados was excellent. My husband is asthmatic and dreads flights. The dreamliner advertises increased oxygen levels in the cabin and my husband felt better due to this. Cabin service was superb with lots of complimentary food and drinks. Once on board we were disappointed with our cabin. It was shabby, no fridge and dark. First and only time we will have an inside cabin! Food in buffet was poor; often lukewarm, coffee terrible, biscuits and cakes had no flavour. Had deck barbeque twice, both times food only warm not hot. Italian restaurant hit and miss, very limited menu. Waiter service in main restaurant very, very slow most of the time; evening meals often lasted 2 hours or more. Patience needed. Lament reduction of courses from 5 to 3 and loss of wine waiters. Doesn't feel so special! We were not all inclusive. Wine package good value but compared to previous Thomson cruises much less selection. So called craft beer selection very poor. Getting a sunbed is impossible until the sun starts to set! Had to sit on the pool edging to get some sun. I was on my holiday and did not want to be forced to sit in a dark cold part of the ship. Bar service very slow, not enough staff. Difficult to get a drink in the show lounge or on the deck without going to the bar. Bars not open in the venue for daytime lectures. We agree with previous review that TUI are taking Thomson cruises down market. We also noted the Sun bingo contingent and felt that it explained many things that we had noticed. We enjoyed all of the ports. Did 3 excursions which were pricey but enjoyable, mainly did our own exploring. Level of poverty in the Caribbean was an eye opener for us. We have decided after many Thomson cruises that we will try another cruise Company, maybe P and O. Want a little bit of luxury on our holidays, which TUI have taken away. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017

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