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32 Costa Magica Family Cruise Reviews

I was party leader for a group of 10 friends and family. I joined this cruise with low expectations, based on the previous reviews. What I actually experienced was way beyond my expectations. We did the Baltic Cruise and visited Stockholm, ... Read More
I was party leader for a group of 10 friends and family. I joined this cruise with low expectations, based on the previous reviews. What I actually experienced was way beyond my expectations. We did the Baltic Cruise and visited Stockholm, Helsinki, St Petersburg and Tallinn. This is an expensive route normally and this was a budget price in the scheme of things. Based on what we paid and what we received there are no complaints. The food was of a good standard at the buffet and the formal dinner and in fact some of the formal dinner food was amazing. I had one of the best beef steaks I have ever had on one evening! The waiters could have been a bit more jovial but they were not rude and their service was fine and we always had a good experience every night. The room was bigger than expected with a good size comfy bed and plenty of hanging space for clothes. We did not see our cabin steward at any time on the cruise but the service was fine and the room was always well looked after. We did have a problem with a shower tray that would not empty properly so one ended up stood in water and also with water overflowing onto the main bathroom floor. I reported this and they came and fixed it while we were out. They then called the room later that day to make sure that we were happy with the fix and by that time we had not used the shower. When we used the shower we found that it was not working correctly still and so we called them and once again they came out to fix it. Once again they called us later that day to check it was ok and this time the fix had worked. I have been on many cruises and I have never had a follow up call to make sure that we were happy with the fix. This is a first for me, so well done to them for actually taking the time twice to make sure we were happy with the repair/fix. Credit where credits due. We did three excursions through Costa and two of these were very good. However we did do the Best of Stockholm and Vasa Museum tour on the final day which is a 3.5 hour tour at €70 per person their ref 2501. This is rushed tour and is not enough time. It ended up that we only had 40 minutes in the Vasa Museum, which is the highlight. They introduced this as one of the World's best Museums and a wonderful experience and then gave us only 40 minutes inside. This is ridiculous as in my opinion you need at least 1.5 hours inside, minimum. I would suggest that you go privately and take your time as this is an amazing museum that deserves more of your time. This was a blemish on what was otherwise a great trip. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
In my opinion this cruise has one port missing. It arrives in Stockholm on a Friday, boarding is on a Saturday, then it leaves for Helsinki, following is 2 days St. Petersburg, then a short time in Tallin. The day after is again in ... Read More
In my opinion this cruise has one port missing. It arrives in Stockholm on a Friday, boarding is on a Saturday, then it leaves for Helsinki, following is 2 days St. Petersburg, then a short time in Tallin. The day after is again in Stockholm, and the following day you have to disembark. I can't understand why they don't add Latvia for example instead of docking for 2 days in Stockholm. Otherwise it would have been nice to have 3 days in Russia, but Stockholm is the least city that one has to see. Something about the ship, decor is very old, brown and orange everywhere, breakfast very poor, bacon and sausages are not even good for dogs...thanks God they offered meat in the grill section which I enjoyed very much for breakfast. In the evening we ate at the sit-in restaurant, food taste average, food decoration very nice. Entertainment during sit-in dinner ZERO neither some background recorded music except for the Italian night and the gala dinner where there was live entertainment which we enjoyed very much. At the pool area NO MUSIC except when there are organised activities which happen only when the ship is at sea...I find this so stupid as it is costless to put a nice music on through a CD...The pool slide on Costa Magica was delusive..it is opened only for 1 hr if you're lucky. So, we booked this ship for the slide and when we boarded we could'nt even use it, we had to wait until the last day to go on it 3 times as they did'nt advise its opening times and we encountered it open by chance....why? we presume so that they won't have to repaint it since the blue colour comes off on your swimsuit or because they don't want to waste human resources to guard the slide. As for the bar service, we bought Piu Gusto for all the cabin which was a family of 4. One of us went to get 2 drinks from the pool bar and the barman humiliated him by asking him for another card....why when our package included unlimited drinks? why ruin guests holiday experience with this approach?? as for children activities the Peppa Pig activities were great and the children had so much fun in the Squok Club...so well done to them. I was going to forget about this...this is unbelievable but true...guys forget that you will be getting an ice cream or a nice milkshake on the ship...if you want one you have to pay for it...this is our 5th cruise and we never encountered anything similar!! As for the Photos...when they will learn that if they reduce the price they will sell more? it's unbelievable how many photos they throw away after every cruise when if they sell them at least half the price many people will be encouraged to buy them...very greedy and stupid behavior in my opinion. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Costa is a Very Surprising Compony, We Enter the Ship in St. Petersburg, the ship is quite of big and good. We Booked Cabin with Window and the Cabin is quite big and good but there a addtion staff on money. The food on costa is good , ... Read More
Costa is a Very Surprising Compony, We Enter the Ship in St. Petersburg, the ship is quite of big and good. We Booked Cabin with Window and the Cabin is quite big and good but there a addtion staff on money. The food on costa is good , there what to eat everywhere. there 2 restaurants on the ship. We was on smeralda and it was an goodrestaurant but it was take the food a long to get. Costa having a show every day Evening. there a lot what to see on board and what to do. But Pizza on board is on additonal Payment. the service on board is good. on Information there staff that talking in multi languages. the loading and unloading was good and quick. and the shops on costa is quite good and recommanded to wait to last day for sales . very nice cruise maybe We'll go again Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Visiting the places we were interested in. Good value for money and suits all budgets. Booking in was very efficient. The ship it’s self was very ornate bars, lovely theatre & lounges. The food was ok if not fab, but ... Read More
Visiting the places we were interested in. Good value for money and suits all budgets. Booking in was very efficient. The ship it’s self was very ornate bars, lovely theatre & lounges. The food was ok if not fab, but bearing in mine the cost it was good value for money. The cabin staff, lounge staff and restaurant were lovely. What spoilt our experience somewhat was the aggressive attitude of the bar staff and some reception staff. We always treat all the staff with respect and a smile but some staff thought it was ok to be rude and aggressive. We did the Stockhol, Helsinki, St Petersburg, TAllinn stops and i would highly recommend these, take an extra day in Stockholm as there is plenty to see. At this point I am not sure I would book Costa again, purely due to the number of times I encountered rude staff and saw how they behaved towards other passengers, even on 1 occasion to an elderly and frail lady. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We visited Stockholm, St Petersburg, Tallinn and Helsinki. This was a beautiful cruise that is very well organized in every aspect. I think it also gives you a great sense of Italy and their way of life and partying. The only bad ... Read More
We visited Stockholm, St Petersburg, Tallinn and Helsinki. This was a beautiful cruise that is very well organized in every aspect. I think it also gives you a great sense of Italy and their way of life and partying. The only bad thing that I have to point out is that they have VERY small swimming pools on the ship, and this is a real problem when 3000 people want to swim at the same time. I loved the food, Italian cuisine is famous worldwide and I think there is something to eat for everyone. :))) And they have a WONDERFUL entertainment team which made me dance and stay awake every single night till God knows which hours. Important to know: - You can link your credit card to your ship card and then don't have to worry about payment. - They have totems now, so you can book your excursions there. - Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly and without any crowds and problems. I will definitely travel with Costa again! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Booked this well in advance and decided to upgrade to a balcony premium room as also taking teenager with us. Given the reviews of Magica and Costa (read them after booking...) I was concerned that we may regret choosing this - but the ... Read More
Booked this well in advance and decided to upgrade to a balcony premium room as also taking teenager with us. Given the reviews of Magica and Costa (read them after booking...) I was concerned that we may regret choosing this - but the itinery was fab and we have been on a couple of cruises before in eastern med with Royal Caribbean - so checked re package and location of cabin carefully - got a single bed sofa sorted rather than bunk bed - and chose Deck 9 as close to bars/buffet/pool etc. We had a fantastic week - and this is why I am writing the review (given the majority of very negative ones!) - as we really rated the following: - the dining room/food ! we were seated at an English speaking table and we had a laugh from the off. Hello Steve and Trish and John and Bev if you are reading this! - the staff - we found everyone helpful and friendly - far more than previous cruises - we enjoyed the gala night - it wasnt formal or stuffy and the whole set up is very relaxed and casual - if you want formal dont book this ship!! Norbert was excellent - the premium room - spacious and spotless all week - decent shower and loads of storage space. Decent bed including the single one - the sofa bed wasnt a hassle and just stayed down along wall all week which was ideal. - embarking/disembarking - all very straight forward - no waiting getting on or off and the same throughout at various stop offs. We got a public bus from central station when arrived at Stockholm - after gettting Arlanda Express from airport - takes 30 mins and cheap! - the itinery - we chose this primarily as we wanted to get as much time in St P and Stockholm as possible - we booked our own shore excursions in St P and did our own thing in other cities. We had a brilliant time in St P as we wanted to do more specific history and politics tours so used Ulko Tours to go to the Political History museum (fantastic - you could spend 5-6 hours there - ask for english speaking tour guide before you go) and also smaller KGB museum. Also did general city tour 1 day with Advertura - very good. These were costly - so it does add a lot to the overall cost of the holiday which we didnt realise when booking cruise. We booked our own flights to and from Stockholm separately so this gave us an extra day in Stockholm - otherwise we would have had to leave the ship by 4.30am on the last day. So this worked out for us and accomm in Stockholm was reasonable - stayed at Park Inn - a couple of stops on metro which was excellent. So overall we were impressed with Costa and would use them again. Yes - the majority of the passengers are Italian/Spanish (no surprise there then) and yes it was loud and noisy in all the public bars/spaces. The entertainment was as to be expected (!) and yes Costa makes the staff try to sell all sorts so there is too much selling at the info sessions - but we found the overall service and the dining experiences great. Just one thing Costa - please add water to the drinks package - its madness not being able to get a glass of water but as many spirits/wine/beer as you wish. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We chose this cruise to join some friends on a vacation and the ship went to islands we had never been to before. This is the first time on a Costa cruise. I had read previous reviews about pushy people, etc., but we found all ... Read More
We chose this cruise to join some friends on a vacation and the ship went to islands we had never been to before. This is the first time on a Costa cruise. I had read previous reviews about pushy people, etc., but we found all co-cruisers were good mannered people all enjoying vacation. The food was quite good at the evening dinner and buffets at breakfast and lunch. The entertainment overall okay but it was mostly too loud on the 5th floor dance area and in some of the lounges, one could hardly talk to someone sitting beside them and once it actually hurt my ears just walking through the area. This isn't evening "disco" time I am talking about this is early evening music entertainment. There is definitely opportunity there to turn down the music a bit. The other opportunity that Costa could look at is their dinner service. It was slow most the time. Often our dirty plates sat in front of us for quite some time, slow on wine refills and they didn't offer coffee service in the dining room. For cruise pictures...I think the Costa should move to digital. Who really wants 11X17 pictures for their walls? This cruise was excellent value for my money. I would travel on this ship again. Staff were all pleasant, food was very good. The ship overall had a nice ambiance. I really enjoyed one day while the ship leaving the island for the day, the "opera" singer, singing the song "Time to Say Goodbye". That was a nice moment. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We chose this cruise because the time and cost was right for us and the ports visited appealed to us. The time spent in each port seemed reasonable also. We are American and we did know the experience would be different for us on an ... Read More
We chose this cruise because the time and cost was right for us and the ports visited appealed to us. The time spent in each port seemed reasonable also. We are American and we did know the experience would be different for us on an Italian ship...previously all our cruises have been on Carnival. (The first day as soon as we got on the ship and went to the buffet, a couple sat down next to us at the table, but as soon as we said "hello" they got up and moved...obviously they didn't want to sit next to Americans!) The employee, Michaela, who "took care" of the English-speakers was very nice and helpful, having a separate meeting with us and offering her help when we needed it. If you are English-speaking be aware that announcements will be made on Costa ships in various languages, taking up a lot of time. The cabin was comparable to Carnival cabins, as the designer of the Carnival and Costa ships is the same. However, our cabin was showing wear with the front of a drawer falling off among other things. The cabin steward was efficient and nice. One thing I found disappointing is that Costa assigns you a cabin, no choice of your own! On Carnival we always choose the cabin we want. We ended up with a cabin at the aft of the ship. It wasn't a bad location except in rough waters, which we had only once. Food in the dining room was beautifully presented but not always tasty. Main entrees sometimes seemed odd, even though I am a fairly adventurous eater. One of our waiters was really screwy, laughing at who knows what...our American table-mates and us? Food at the buffet was always the same and plentiful, tasty for the most part. Costa offers drink packages and it seemed to us beforehand on the website that in order to have water at meals you'd need to order a water package, and we ordered one for me. I wish we hadn't as I could have had natural water at meals anyway. The package stated that you'd have this water to carry with you, however, the water is in liter bottles that I did not want to carry with me, especially on excursions. Plus, the waiters NEVER understood that I was to get this water (my choice of sparkling or natural) during the whole cruise, even though it was printed on the back of my Costa card and even after several phone calls in which the customer service person said they would speak to the waiters about it! They admitted the employees needed more training! My husband had the beer package and had the same trouble. His Costa card too had "water" printed on the back of it so it was a reoccurring problem as well. Fact is, you could get wine or beer anywhere without a package and the cost seemed to be the same. I would not recommend purchasing drink packages. The worst part of the cruise was the trouble we had with excursions. The one I was looking forward to the most was cancelled. This was the "Gourmet" excursion with wine-tasting and truffles out of Savona, Italy. First they said it was cancelled due to not enough English-speakers signing up for it, but when I inquired about going on a non-English-speaking excursion to that location they said they were not going there at all! We substituted an excursion to Genoa. As it turned out, I had obviously eaten something in the dining room the night before we reached Savona that didn't agree with me and I just could not risk being away from a bathroom on a bus for an hour to go to Genoa the next morning. I took medicine on my own and knew I'd get over it in time and didn't need a doctor. When we called to cancel that excursion they said we could not cancel it unless I went to the doctor, for a fee of 50 euros, and got a note saying I was not well enough to go on the excursion. We said, soooo you can cancel an excursion on us but we cannot cancel one on you! Right? They said right! If I'd spent the money for the doctor and he said I was okay, which he likely would have done since I had no fever, we would have spent the extra 50 euros and still paid for the excursion. As it was, we paid for an excursion we didn't take. Then, after our excursion in Pisa my husband started having back and hip pain and knew he was not going to be able to walk for the 2.5 hours on the excursion we'd booked for Rome the next day. We decided we'd be better off doing the "Rome on our own" tour and tried to change it the night before Rome but the excursion office was closed. We called early the next morning and they said we could change the excursion at the departure point but still had to pay for the original one. So, we did that out of necessity. Rome turned out to be cold and rainy. That was not Costa's fault of course, but almost all the people on our bus returned to the point we were to meet the bus early because we were all miserable due to the weather, and the bus did not pull up until the exact minute we were to leave. It does seem like the bus could have gotten there a little ahead of time as there was space to park the bus and the weather was so awful! Most of the tour guides were okay. The one in Pisa was excellent! The one in Palma de Mallorca spoke so fast that we couldn't understand her even if it was in English! All in all, the Costa excursions were disappointing for us, although Pisa was excellent and we had a wonderful time on our own in Aix-en-Provence, which was an excursion out of Marseilles. This cruise had people embarking and disembarking at each port, which was also different. This meant that there was a safety session each day for those just getting on the ship, and that there were extra announcements and "noise" each day. We did not take an excursion in Barcelona as we got on and off there. We spent 4 extra days in Barcelona at the end of the cruise and that was a very pleasant part of our trip. Glad we did that. Barcelona is an interesting and very friendly city! Actually, the very best part of our cruise was time spent with the English-speaking couples we met. With so few of us we developed a sort of camaraderie among us and that was fun! Thank goodness for them as I must say that some of the other people on the cruise (not all by any means) were actually rude and pushy, not something we were used to on a cruise. In conclusion, we will not take a cruise on an Italian ship again, and don't recommend it for Americans. My total rating of 3 stars is generous. My husband would rate it a 2. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
I chose this cruise thinking it would be lovely for my moms very first cruise. Honestly the ports of call sounded more appealing than a normal med cruise. And that was my main reason for picking this cruise line. I have cruised before but ... Read More
I chose this cruise thinking it would be lovely for my moms very first cruise. Honestly the ports of call sounded more appealing than a normal med cruise. And that was my main reason for picking this cruise line. I have cruised before but always with American ships (Carnival in particular)So was expecting high standards. In fairness the crew were very sweet and did everything they could to make the cruise enjoyable in particular the staff at embarkation and disembarkation very helpful to my elderly mother taking her hand on and off the ramp, Our waiter in the evening Dsilva Dolree did his very best to ensure our dining was pleasant. (The food was generally exceptionally disappointing) And our cabin crew lovely and helpful. My main complaints were food related. Bland at best and over salted at worst. The same Italian staples came out at lunch each day same sandwiches same hams cheeses etc. I understand its an Italian ship but they need to cater to those of us that are not Italian. We don`t all love tasteless over-salted pasta. Or a main course for dinner without vegetables. There was plenty of melon on board and plenty of apples and pineapple so I cannot complain about the fruit however a variety would be nice instead of same oh same oh at every lunch and breakfast. Most people go on a cruise for the food drink and entertainment. In all of these I`m afraid i found the Magica totally lacking. (I`m not a drinker so honestly didn't pay for a drinks package because it would have been a waste) hate to say this but will not use Costa again I think I will stick to the American cruises there is no comparison . they know how to entertain and how to put on beautiful edible meals. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I choose costa magica 7 day of Baltic because sdate match for my daughter and wife holiday. I hope this ship is her first cruise made them happy. Last year I and my mother cruise with costa fortuna .We appreciated that ship but nor for ... Read More
I choose costa magica 7 day of Baltic because sdate match for my daughter and wife holiday. I hope this ship is her first cruise made them happy. Last year I and my mother cruise with costa fortuna .We appreciated that ship but nor for costa magica. First at embarkation the officer forgot to stamp complete in boarding ticket and I have to return after X ray. Lunch buffet are hot dog and hamberger but tomato ketchup and mayonaise are inadequate. Dinner no ice cream tea or coffee. Supper has only pizza veg/ham cheese. After midnight has only milk /tea. Entertainment nearly half are non english song but no asian. Gym has some malfunction equipment. inside cabin is small but clean.Port @ stockholm helsinki st peterberg tallin are good. I travel by myself I take uber is good. in St peterberg I takeTaxo vichof for service in hour based have a big problem because call center hot good in english. The last and the most not appreciated is before i disembarkation I check money credit on board gratitude and internet price. It is correct. But 3 day after the credit card officer phone me in midnight because someone try to use my credit card . Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We have been on 10 cruises and Costa Magica does not rate very well compared to the others. We booked this just to see what other cruise lines had to offer and were pleased with the price but overall disappointed. Embarkations was the ... Read More
We have been on 10 cruises and Costa Magica does not rate very well compared to the others. We booked this just to see what other cruise lines had to offer and were pleased with the price but overall disappointed. Embarkations was the easiest so far....flawless and no lines. The ships overall appearance seems to be nice and updated. The rooms are roomy for a cruise ship and we were pleased. We were assigned seating for dining and loved the family that we were paired with but we do not like the assigned seating and prefer the "Freestyle Dining". This allows much more flexibility and not such a rigid schedule while on vacation, The food was edible but not good. Several times we tried what they brought out but chose not to eat it or ate it because we were starving.. We were also disappointed that they do not serve coffee with dessert. Coffee is only served during breakfast and at the bar. Breakfast is good and we chose to go to our assigned dining room for breakfast because it was not as hectic as Deck 9 (which is a free for all). They do offer a menu and serve you coffee as well as a continental breakfast. We were usually off the ship during lunch so we do not know how that went. The service during the Dinner was below average. We constantly had to ask for water and very seldom would pour it for you. The server would just set it on the table. Entertainment was average. We never book shore excursions with the cruise lines because they are too expensive and the groups are too large. We did hear that the ship offered a really good program for the kids which is a plus for families. One of the big things we noticed was they were not require you to clean your hands prior to meals and did not offer warm wash cloths/sanitizer to clean your hands when you are coming aboard the ship after touring another country. Hand sanitizer was unavailable when boarding the ship in some ports and the one going into the dining area did not work properly. Also, we never saw them sanitizing the handrails, etc on the ship. The workers told us they work 8 months a year, 11 hour days, 7 days a week which I am sure this contributed to the poor service. Hopefully, they were given the gratuity that is automatically added to your bill. Our cabin as mid ship on Deck 2 and we could hear the crew working throughout the night most every night. Between the food/service/sanitizing I would not recommend this cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This was the first time I went on a cruise. I went with my mother, who had previously been on two cruises with RCI. We travelled to Stockholm by train, having spent the previous night in Gothenburg. We arrived at Stockholm Södra ... Read More
This was the first time I went on a cruise. I went with my mother, who had previously been on two cruises with RCI. We travelled to Stockholm by train, having spent the previous night in Gothenburg. We arrived at Stockholm Södra Station and took a taxi directly to Frihamnen, where Costa Magica was boarding. Boarding went very smoothly, we had to wait for maybe 10-15 minutes before we could board the ship. Costa Magica's décor is rather lavish, with thousands of works of art onboard. Depictions of women, in various states of (un)dress, is a theme onboard, which some more conservative passengers could possibly find slightly shocking. The age is beginning to show (she was launched in 2003), and the colour scheme could be called gaudy by some (I rather liked it). The ship's slogan is "Cruising Italian Style", and the aim is to cater to European tastes. In practice, the great majority of the passengers were Italians, the rest seemed to be mostly Spanish, French and Russian. Consequently, most announcements are made in Italian, English, French, German, Spanish and Russian, which means that announcements tend to be rather long. Due to the large number of nationalities among the guests, Costa Magica staff makes an effort to seat people who speak the same language together at dinner, which is a very good idea. The quality of the food is OK, ranging from bland to tasty. Costa being an Italian cruise line, the food in the main dining rooms is heavily dominated by Italian cuisine. The buffet is more international, the food arguably tastier (!) than the main dining rooms, and we noticed as the week progressed that the number of guests declined in the dining room and increased at the buffet. Due to the variety of languages among the guests, the entertainment tend to focus on song and dance shows. These were rather enjoyable, but an acrobatic show that was on offer one night was not to our taste. We signed up for an organised excursion in St. Petersburg (if you join an excursion organised by the cruise line, you don't need to apply for a visa), while we explored Helsinki and Tallinn by ourselves. The all-day excursion in St. Petersburg was worth it, even though 2.5 hours at the Hermitage was a bit much. Service onboard was good, the staff was friendly, and especially our cabin attendant Hugo deserves a mention. I would not mind going on a Costa cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Our fourth cruise with Costa (the second with Costa Magica) and, unfortunately, we have seen, over the years, a gradual decline in quality. Both cleanliness and services are maintained at good levels; the kitchen is on the decline. For the ... Read More
Our fourth cruise with Costa (the second with Costa Magica) and, unfortunately, we have seen, over the years, a gradual decline in quality. Both cleanliness and services are maintained at good levels; the kitchen is on the decline. For the entire duration of the cruise we had to avoid shrimp dishes because this crustacean was almost inedible. For the rest, average cuisine. As for the excursions, the two are excellent in St. Petersburg (although rather expensive), very bad that of Stockholm due to various disservices as well as an uneducated guide. It is opportune to emphasize that as an alternative to lunch, 90 minutes of free time have been "granted", from the most spent to bivouac on the steps of the buildings or on the benches of the main square of Stockholm, in order to consume the bad lunch basket, provided by Costa We have carried out, with an absolutely constructive spirit, the appropriate reports to the Customer Service, but finding a strenuous and sterile defense of office. La nostra quarta crociera con Costa ( la seconda con Costa Magica) e, purtroppo, abbiamo riscontrato, col passare degli anni, un progressivo calo della qualità. Si mantengono a buoni livelli sia la pulizia che i servizi; in calo invece la cucina. Per tutta la durata della crociera abbiamo dovuto evitare i piatti a base di gambero perchè tale crostaceo risultava quasi immangiabile. Per il resto cucina nella media. Per quanto riguarda le escursioni , ottime le due a San Pietroburgo ( anche se piuttosto care), pessima quella di Stoccolma a causa di vari disservizi oltre che di una Guida poco educata. Opportuno sottolineare che in alternativa al pranzo ci sono stati "concessi" 90 minuti di tempo libero, dai più trascorsi a bivaccare sui gradini dei palazzi o sulle panchine della principale piazza di Stoccolma, al fine di potere consumare il pessimo lunch basket, fornito dalla Costa, Abbiamo effettuato, con spirito assolutamente costruttivo, le opportune segnalazioni al Servizio Clienti riscontrando però una strenua quanto sterile difesa d'ufficio. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
It was my first experience with Costa Cruise. North Europe destination (Stockholm, Helsinki, St. Petersburg, Tallinn). In short: Embarking - just few minutes, nice welcoming by staff, photo and ID card is ready, you leave baggage at ... Read More
It was my first experience with Costa Cruise. North Europe destination (Stockholm, Helsinki, St. Petersburg, Tallinn). In short: Embarking - just few minutes, nice welcoming by staff, photo and ID card is ready, you leave baggage at collection point and you go straight to the cabin. Your baggage is delivered to your cabin within next half an hour. As simple as is. Cabin: we had balcony one. 1 double bed and i single one. Both comfortable and well sized. Cabin perfectly clean. TV set might have been a bit bigger but was ok. Shower worked well. Dinning: we chose international breakfast option - enough variety of food - whatever you need. All fresh and tasty. Dinners were extremely good. No standing in queues nor waiting for service. Ship - Magica is quite big ship (apprx 110k tons) - means big enough to be stable but not crowded too much Service - as always staff was just perfect - smiling, speaking different languages, polite and well-skilled. Entertainment - we attended 2 events "Voice of the sea" and "Magic moments" - both worth of spending time. Excursions - we prefer organising trips on our own. Stockholm is stunning, packed and extremely expensive; St. Petersburg is incredible (mus see points are Peterhof, Tzarskie Selo, Hermitage, Nevsky Prospect, Issac's church and On Blood Church. All of them you can easily reach on your own using public transport. Value for money - J have no idea why people spend fortunes on other cruise lines whereas they don't offer anything better than Costa (maybe snobbery?). Long story short: take Costa, pay half of what other lines demand and have wonderfull holiday. Robert Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I have read bad reviews about COSTA, but the destinations looked very appealing so I took my chances. Well, I should have listened to those reviews because other than the great port of calls, reasonable price of the cruise and the very ... Read More
I have read bad reviews about COSTA, but the destinations looked very appealing so I took my chances. Well, I should have listened to those reviews because other than the great port of calls, reasonable price of the cruise and the very entertaining shows by their in house singers and dancers, everything else was bad. There were 14 of us in 7 cabins, and most of us have the same sentiments-never will we take COSTA again! Let me list some of the reasons : 1.Embarkation procedure disorganized, took us 3 hours from arrival at terminal to boarding. And we arrived early ( 11 a.m.). 2.Food low quality & lacked variety , even the specialty restaurant Lobster & Grill ( extra charge of E25 per cover) had bad food - lobster clearly frozen & meat sticking to the shell, Key Lime Pie looked & tasted like the store bought variety. Total waste of money ! 3. Buffet opens only at 7 p.m., frustrating for those who want a quick meal before watching first show at 7:15 p.m. And after 9:30 p.m., there's nowhere to find food . 4. Shore excursions cancelled if not enough people ( this happened twice that I know of with the English ones, could have happened more). 5. Delayed arrival in port, threw a wrench on our tours with private operators. 6.Front desk personnel not very knowledgeable, speak to different people and you get different answers. We wanted to buy their airport transfer upon disembarkation in Amsterdam but no more space- so I asked how much is taxi and the answer was 25E. We took 3 taxis and paid between 70-85 E per taxi, what a nice surprise! 7. Never seen such an unhappy lot of ship personnel, I suspect they are overworked and very underpaid. Confirmed when we spoke with a number of people working there. 8. Cabins were clean, but very warm despite adjusting in the thermostat. 9.Bought a shuttle bus ride with them, trip scheduled for 9:15 a.m. but bus was delayed so we left port at 10 a.m.. And last shuttle back to port was at 12:30 instead of 12:45 so we had very little time for sightseeing. Felt short changed. 10. Pet peeve: shower curtain one inch shorter than it should me resulting in water spraying around. Why can't spend a little money to replace those and save passenger aggravation as well as a lot of work on the cabin cleaners? I usually write a review only when I'm happy with my experience, but this one is to warn others. Unless you're a first time cruiser or you don't mind being stressed, don't take COSTA ! Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We chose this cruise line/ship for the Italian style/language/culture having family from Italy. We have been on the Costa Victoria before and like it very much. Although cruise lines have cut back on some the features like full scale ... Read More
We chose this cruise line/ship for the Italian style/language/culture having family from Italy. We have been on the Costa Victoria before and like it very much. Although cruise lines have cut back on some the features like full scale entertainment and midnight buffet, the overall experience is very good. I have read many poor reviews of Costa Magica but most the negatives are due to a miss-match of what the passenger expected and what the cruise line provide. An Italian cruise line is going to speak Italian plus 4 other major languages. Don't expect all English even when cruising in the Caribbean. Of course food is always subjective. Some have very high expectations and other have lower. The cruise we were on had good to very good food quality and I did not see any repeat selections within the 7 days. The entertainment had been cut back but did build and the week progressed. The staff service was excellent, with special mention to our dining room waiter "Genio Baltista" who could not have been better. Very entertaining and made our dinners enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Having cruised with MSC, Norwegian, Carnival and Royal Caribbean before plus one time with Costa, I can hardly be categorized as loyal to any particular cruise line. To me, any cruise is a good cruise and I always try to find the perfect ... Read More
Having cruised with MSC, Norwegian, Carnival and Royal Caribbean before plus one time with Costa, I can hardly be categorized as loyal to any particular cruise line. To me, any cruise is a good cruise and I always try to find the perfect match of itinerary and value for money. This Costa cruise included a number of interesting ports such as Tangier and Casablanca where we participated in excellent excursions offered by the ship. In Marseille, we walked about 900 metres and then took a local bus (no 38) to the city centre ( at 3.60 Euro for a day pass) - much cheaper than the shuttle bus offered by the ship. We then took another bus up to see the church Notre Dame de la garde from which there is a fabulous view of the old harbour. Furthermore, iif you do not mind walking, you can easily experience both !Lisbon and Cadiz on your own on foot. In recent years, Costa has limted the places where onboard smoking is permitted, which suits me fine. However, unless my memory fails me, they have also cut back on their buffet breakfast options, leaving out hot dishes such as scrambled egg and bacon. Consequently, you have to go to the restaurant in the morning if you want to have an international brakfast. However, if you choose to do so, you can both serve yourself from the buffet in the restaurant or order from a comprehensive menu of different types of breakfast items such as Belgian waffles, American pancakes and various omelettes. If you are back late onboard after having been ashore and are hungry, you will often have to stand in line for a long time at " The Grill" which on many days is the only place to get hot lunch options in the middle of the afternoon. On a more positive note, the various types of beef served in the main dining room in the evenings were all very delicious, and the menu never failed to offer something to my taste. I would, however, have welcomed "icecream" on the list of " always available" items. If you are a night owl you may be rather disappointed to find that the bars close rather early, and even the disco - which mostly semed tobe full of very young teens - stop serving the guests at 3 am. As on other cruises, many guests were up early hoarding sunbeds, but as Costa had limited the space between the sunbeds to sqeeze in as many beds as possible, I never had any problem finding a sunbed. Furthermore, unlike on MSC, no decks were reserved for frequent cruisers with special membership which again increased the possibility for finding a vacant sunbed. Costa is known as the budget cruise liner, but you should be aware that their service charges are as high as € 10 a day. Also, most cocktails cost € 7.45 (plus 15% service charge) which may make you consider opting for the Piu Guso beverage package ( € 29 a day). You can also get a beverage package of 40 softdrinks/ non-alcoholic cocktails for € 110. As on MSC, water is not offered for free in the restaurant, and coffee and tea is only available for breakfast and the afternoon snack. Furthermore, juice is only available in the morning. The fitness centre was larger than what we have experienced on most other ships, but unfortunately some of the machines did not work. We did not go to see more than a few of the shows in the theatre but instead spent several hours listening to a fantastic duo called "Gisele & Daniel" who performed each evening in the atrium on deck 3. Costa has really hit jackpot by signing on this charming and talented Brazilian couple who outperformed any duo we have ever listened to on our previous cruises. Weighing the pros against the cons, I think we got good value for money by choosing this Costa cruise. However, Costa is far from ever becoming our favourite cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
We are experienced cruisers - this was our 35th or so cruise. We have sailed on RCL, NCL, Princess, Celebrity, Carnival and Costa through the years. We chose this ship due to the departure date and exotic itinerary - figured how bad ... Read More
We are experienced cruisers - this was our 35th or so cruise. We have sailed on RCL, NCL, Princess, Celebrity, Carnival and Costa through the years. We chose this ship due to the departure date and exotic itinerary - figured how bad could an Italian cruise be and it could be fun and lively. Well we were very wrong. This was the WORST cruise we have ever taken and our sentiments were echoed by our Norweigen and British tablemates who had cruised numerous times in the past as well. I will list Pros and Cons. PRO - Embarkation from Rome (Civitavecchia) - Exotic Itinerary (5 of the ports we had never visited including 2 cities in Morocco) - Large ship with attractive public rooms - Cabin - interior on 8th deck (only available at time of booking) was kept clean with a fridge and had enough space for both of us - Entertainment - Flamenco dancers, Cruise ship singers and dancers did a good job; White Night deck party was festive with DJ, dancers, confetti; lounge bands were lively, piano bar was busy nightly; casino was fairly busy; the ship had lots of music in various lounges in the evening and The Voice gameshow with 7 contestants which was entertaining. CONS - Embarkation fiasco - no idea we could not be dropped off w/rental car to embarkation entrance...no info provided...husband left son and I on port access road with big pieces of luggage - no bus or cab would stop to pick us up...port police intervened and forced a shuttle bus to stop and let us load our luggage under the bus (seems we should have loaded our luggage on shuttle bus in town of Civitavecchia - we had no info on this procedure. - Only approx 20 Americans on board ship of approx 2800 passengers - 70% Italian extended families; 25% mostly French & German; 5% Brits, Americans, Spanish & other - Msgs repeated in 5 languages all day long - Food was HORRIBLE!! WORST of any cruise we ever have ever taken! Buffets very limited, no real selections, same cold cuts, cheeses, breads and salads daily, same buffet choices both sides...grill outside on decks was normal fare; eggs at breakfast were only possible at the formal breakfast and were set types of eggs pre-made; formal dinner was barely edible - the menu choices were bizarre fare and not tasty - minute steaks, thinly sliced chicken breasts with no sauce, pastas with odd sauces, appetizers no one enjoyed - night after night we all felt the same....what type of menu is this - this food is unsatisfactory - we complained to guest services - we were told the menu was supposed to have been changed; dining onboard was such a huge disappointment - we dreaded our days at sea! We later found out by a fellow American traveler that all the food onboard was PREVIOUSLY FROZEN!!! She said look at the snowflakes next to every item on the dinner menu - the key says previously frozen. We realized thats why the food was soooo bad!! There was no fresh produce and no dishes being cooked onboard!!! Never heard of this policy on a cruise ship. There were NO speciality restaurants either - I guess not if they are not cooking on board the ship! - No late night buffets or special touches like a chocolate fountain or specialty food events. - Air Conditioning barely worked in our cabin - technician came twice said it was a bad, weak system in this line of cabins and close to pool deck with hot air coming in. - Pool deck extremely crowded - 3 pools and 1 slide; slide was always closed; no adult pools - all pools overrun with kids and teens - one day at sea - two of the 3 pools were closed - they claimed seas were too rough - early morning yes - a bit rough but by noon sea was very calm and pools never re-opened. - Rear deck cabins felt a terrible vibration almost nightly when the ship was traveling at 20 knots - made it hard to sleep. - The ship had a lot of movement daily - you could feel it pitching and rolling onboard - we never noticed this onboard any other ships we took and we cruised from Southhampton, England in a rainstorm in the North Sea. - Disco and late night club could not be used by adults (well, it was open to all) however, the 12-16 year olds used it nightly as a teen club occupying it until 3am - most adults would feel uncomfortable dancing in the club with 12 year olds late at night - seemed odd yet, the bar was serving liquor to whoever ordered it. We brought this to the attention of Guest Services and they said this is normal on Costa. - Crew had a private party directly above our cabin on the pool deck with a DJ - our whole cabin was shaking with the music and dancing - we complained 3 times to no avail and even went up to the party to speak to the officer - nothing was done and we were kept awake until 3 am! Other passengers went up to complain and were told sorry party is authorized. - Crew did not seem very concerned about issues or complaints - they seemed indifferent to our concerns and we were not offered any form of compensation either for a bad Costa tour experience we had with some aggressive passengers towards our daughter or the crew party till 3 am above our cabin and the lack of air conditioning every night in our cabin and our 2nd cabin....we both had barely any A/C. - We found out an American couple had chosen to opt-out of mandatory tipping - which was only possible for Americans who booked through American companies - we opted out also and tipped those deserving of tips. All in all this was a difficult cruise experience for us - my kids were bored - 19 and 24 year olds - they always meet others passengers their age on ships - there was no one in their age range....only families with small children or older couples traveling alone. Our two cabins were extremely hot every single night although turned to lowest temps. This was our 5th or 6th European cruise of over 11 nights and we NEVER experienced these negative issues or ever complained about the food on board. We will never sail with Costa Cruises again and would not recommend it for any Americans familiar with cruising. This was not up to American cruising standards. It seems to be a "no frills" operation, with many cost cutting measures in place. The most disappointing was the food and the fact that the dishes were all previously frozen. I had no idea cruise ships - which are known for their food would do this. Fortunately, some of the ports were very exotic and educational. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Costa is a good cruise line if you want to spend a lot for very little. I had cruised on Carnival in the Caribbean and had expected a comparable level of quality. I was totally wrong. The food is akin to a high school cafeteria. It is also ... Read More
Costa is a good cruise line if you want to spend a lot for very little. I had cruised on Carnival in the Caribbean and had expected a comparable level of quality. I was totally wrong. The food is akin to a high school cafeteria. It is also available only at select times (unlike Carnival, when there is ample food available around the clock). The ship employees are barely friendly, and often not. The excursions were inferior and sometimes unavailable to English speakers. The English-speaking guides speak broken English which is hard to understand, and many did not have a command of their topics (or felt limited by their barely proficient English). Unlike Carnival, the ship employees are not eager to please. When I repeatedly requested a change in table, I was told it was impossible. That may have been the case, but their attitude was that I was asking for something unreasonable -- again, quite in contrast to my experience on Carnival. The food was not good and rarely varied from day-to-day. The meat was dry or tough. There were no "special foods" like shrimp or lobster. The desserts were plain and uninteresting. There were many other non-friendly customer elements: the slide is open only four hours per day. The pools close at 10 pm. There is one choice for dinner (no optional buffets as is the case on Carnival), unless you want to pay extra to eat at the pizza bar. The only bright spot was the rooms and overall condition of the ship, which was well-maintianed and attractive (though I could do without the nudity all over the walls, especially with kids along). I know that Carnival owns Costa, but this was not in evidence. I would discourage English-speakers from taking a Costa Cruise. And I can't imagine that the food quality could be pleasing even to Europeans. Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
we went on this cruise for our sons 21st birthday it was booked back in january 2014.i read quite a few of the reviews regarding the ship and type of holiday and although people are entitled to their opinion i thought some of the bad ... Read More
we went on this cruise for our sons 21st birthday it was booked back in january 2014.i read quite a few of the reviews regarding the ship and type of holiday and although people are entitled to their opinion i thought some of the bad reviews were a bit harsh, i was wrong the reviews were right, i know the ship is run by a italian company but did not realise so many foriegn people would be on it our group of 5 people were the the only english people.Apart from the theatre in the evening time any announcements were all done in foreign languages apart from maybe about 2 times,i can not fault the staff or the cabin room, we have been on other cruises and the cabin room was loads bigger (inside cabin aswell) the food was ok mainly italian catered for and i agree with one of the reviews the italians were the most ignorant people we have met and did not like queueing for food even when they could see the queue but were pushing in all the time at which point after about 2 days of putting up with this me and my husband no longer did and had quite a few arguments with said people and told them to get to the back of the queue and queue like the rest of us had to and they do understand english?????also on costa cruises you only get free water throughout the day and fresh orange juice in the morning(unless you purchase there drinks packages the cheapest being about £25.00 each per person per day hence we did not have this) of which your not suppose to but most of these people were filling up bottles hence holding up the people queueing for drinks,if they got seen they were told off but did this very crafitly ,the italians also gorged themselves on the food piling there plates with huge masses of food but then did not eat it all which was a great waste and taking this amount of food in the first place meant less for everyone else but they were not bothered about this.and as usual the old sunloungers debate people putting towels on sunbeds but not actually being any where near there sunbed and also people taking your stuff off your sunbed (we had only gone to the toilet) and came back to other people on our sunbeds tannoy annoucements were made but still not adhered to and other charges that you need to be warned about. everytime you order a drink there is a service charge on it and as well as this you are charged everyday another service charge which is payable every day for each person and was 8 euros each per day per person which in the exchange rate worked out bout £9.60 so for 10 day for us 5 which equates to about £480.00 and although the travel agent told us about the service charge she didnt know if this was optional and she did not know how much it would be rubbish travel agent???? so my advise is to anyone thinking of going on a cruise dont go on any costa cruises as we felt we were being ripped off all the time and the word cattle market came to mind as you just felt like you were being herded round all the time especailly at meal times so avoid avoid theres plenty of other cruise liners out there. Read Less
Sail Date July 2014
We had a generally nice cruise (2 adults, 2 children). The crew was very polite, the ship very clean and well decorated, the program of free entertainment very rich. However, it was relatively expensive everything it was not included in ... Read More
We had a generally nice cruise (2 adults, 2 children). The crew was very polite, the ship very clean and well decorated, the program of free entertainment very rich. However, it was relatively expensive everything it was not included in the cruise package (excursions [well organized] etc). Our cabin was in the size I imagined, well climatized and served. No problem with the food; well cooked and satisfactory variety. You can also fill small bottles with water on the 9th deck. No smoking rules were strictly kept throughout the cruise. You have to know english or italian to communicate easily with most people (the tourists are mainly italians). In reception some speak more languages (french, german etc). The pools are rather small. It's not a good idea to take a bath in them with many others aroynd you. The free time we had in some ports (Venice, Corfu) was less we expected. I would travel again with Costa. Read Less
Sail Date July 2014
As we got a good deal we decided to try Costa cruises. We have previously done NCL, RCCL, HAL, Celebrity, Carnival and MSC and after MSC we actually decided not to go fo a Italian cruise again. The MSC wold charge you for anytthing and not ... Read More
As we got a good deal we decided to try Costa cruises. We have previously done NCL, RCCL, HAL, Celebrity, Carnival and MSC and after MSC we actually decided not to go fo a Italian cruise again. The MSC wold charge you for anytthing and not much was included compared to the american ships - but money talks and we had the AI drink package included in our offer, which turned out to be excellent value. In order to help to understand the difference between the American shps and Costa I will try to make comparisons during the review. Enbarkation: Arriving at the port we delivered our luggage after having been in a line. At this point you get a boarding number, that should be used n the terminal later. The luggage delivery station was approximately 400 meters from the terminal, so you had to walk from the luggage delivery station to the terminal. At US ships you arrive at the ship and stewards are ready to take your luggage immediately at arrival - no line and not necessary to walk to the terminal. Arriving at the terminal you will wait until your assigned boarding number is called. Then you are put in a new line to wait for document checking. You don't deliver your credit card details here nor is your photo taken for your key card at this point (New lines for you is coming up). After the document checking a new long line is waiting for you for security check. Then you are on your way to board the shp, but has to pass to other lines: 1 for another document check and another line to get your photo taken. Finally on board you have 48 hours to provide your credita card details on the machines onboard. On US ships all of the previous is done at check-in and decrease the embarkation time significant. IT took us 2-3 hours from delivering the luggae to board the ship - area for improvement. The ship: The ship itself is beatiful and very well maintained. The decor is quite nice and italian which we did like, though it was difficult to navigate between the parts of the ships, as you could only pass from one end to the other on deck 5 -on deck 3 and 4 you have to go to deck 5 if you had to move from one end to another. Cabin: We had balcony cabin 9281, which had an excellent location, as it was near the elevators, lido, buffet and bar. There was no noise from the public areas. The cabin itself was slight wider than on the US ships, so you felt that the cabin was larger than on US ships. It was in good condition and had quit hard beds (Which I liked. Restaurant & food: Well this is where the big difference between Costa and US ships really is big. If you want decent food you HAVE to eat in the main restaurants at your specific seating, as the alternative buffet was nearly none exiting. We tried to the buffet one evening and it was a huge mistake: They only have slad and poor poor quality pizza (2 flavours). The pizzas was the worst we have had ever - there was barely no toppings on these, so I would compare those to a flat bread with a bit of cheese and oil on the top - very poor. On US ships you have a broad variaty of dishes during the evening buffet which are very tasty. While at the buffet, there is the usual stuff for breakfast including an omelet station. The variaty is OK, but not as much as on US ships. For lunch it was OK, though it was limited variaty. On US ships you can have Limonade, fruit punch, ice tea or water throughout the day - on Costa you are offered water only, so you had to get other drinks from the bar. There are only very limited personnel to deliver the drinks for you so you will have to line up at the bars to get your drinks. You can also choose to have dinner in the speciality restaurant but did not try that (25 cover charge). The quality of the food in the main restaurant was so so. Sometimes quite delicious - at other times no taste at all. My wife ordered steak on evening and got a small flat piece of dry meat and approximately 30 french fries - that was all. Portions are small and the variaty are again limited compared to US ships. The US ships will beat Costa by far on the food choices, quantity and quality - so don't go Costa if food is a priority for you. Pools: If you don't have kids - forget the pools - they are really overcrowded with kids so it is impossible to have a swim or even to find a spare spot where you can dip. Fellow pasangers: Mainly italians, where you can expect that they smoke more than average, though smoking was not an issue for us - nor inside or outside. You are allowed to smoke in one side of the ship, but the italians smoke all over the ship. On US ships you have very limited smoking and yoiur fellow passangers are US, which we prefer instead of the quite selfish and noisy italians. Drinks: Hey this is great if you are on the AI package. You can order any drinks from the barmenu - except those with a star. The list of drinks available on AI is large and they deliver great drinks including Pina Colada, Daquiries etc. You can also have specialty coffee on the AI package, but not freshly squizzed juice. Other points - Don't expect all the "extra" service you get on the US ships. - The time you are in port is very limited (5 hours or so) compared to the US ships where you will have the most of a day in port. Entertainment: We did see a show or 2 and liked what we saw. We actually prefer the shows on the italian ships compared to the shows on US ships, as the singers and dancers perform very well. At the US ships it seems like the singers try their best to be the new star like Whitney Houston, Tom Jones etc and it becomes often ofthe a pain to listen too. We prefer if the US singers would relax a bit more and just be themselves. Would we go Costa again? - not sure even if we felt that it was a better deal than going with MSC. We prefer US ships as you get better overall deals when you include service, quality, quantity and fellow passengers   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
SMOKE OR DIE, OR BOTH. Great Cruise if you like second hand smoke everywhere you go. We booked a 7 night cruise on Costa Cruises from Venice to Greece particularly to visit the sites of Olympia and Athens, for our daughter who had studied ... Read More
SMOKE OR DIE, OR BOTH. Great Cruise if you like second hand smoke everywhere you go. We booked a 7 night cruise on Costa Cruises from Venice to Greece particularly to visit the sites of Olympia and Athens, for our daughter who had studied the Greek legends. She is 4.75. This was accomplished. Before offering my negative comments, I do want to say that the staff on the boat was wonderful. Rarely have I seen so many people working so hard to make the cruise a success, and for so little in wages. It is clear the the cruise line pays extremely low wages because almost all the staff was from disadvantaged countries in Central America, South America, India, Pakistan, Indonesia and the Philippines. These hard workers not only provided service, they did it in 4-6 different languages! Italian, English, Spanish, French, were basic, plus some Portuguese and Russian, and other languages. Unlike some other reviewers, we did not have any language problems with the other passengers or any staff. However, Costa Cruises is not friendly to NON-smokers and it was like riding in a smoke filled room for 7 days and nights. I felt like our boat was trailing a smoke cloud down the Adriatic Sea. Costa allows smoking in all the bars and lounges, including Guest reception. This interior smoke permeates the entire boat, and can be smelt in the cabin and even in other areas and on decks that do not have smoking. By the pool, there are supposed to be both smoking and non-smoking areas. I could never find any non-smoking area, there was smoke everywhere. It was so bad that on the last morning when there was smoke inside the non-smoking restaurant, no smoke alarm went off, and most people ignored it, even though it was clear that the smoke was not from cigarettes. I became ill from the smoke with a sinus infection, beginning day 2, as did my wife and daughter. Although Costa purports to offer a free medical checkup if you develop signs of influenza (and I had at least 4 symptoms) we could not obtain one. This was not my previous cruise experience and in my opinion, it is completely inappropriate to put a persons unhealthy recreational habit in higher priority to the good health of another. We did not book a cruise to be sneezing, coughing and uncomfortable for 7 days just so others could puff away like a teepee of American Indians. It is also my opinion that Costa needs to come into the 21st Century. Smoking is now recognized as a serious health hazard to non-smokers, and smoking is banned in offices, restaurants and modes of transport (planes and trains) in respect to the health of others. Smoking bans on planes also are a recognition that smoking constitutes a FIRE HAZARD, something that is really a problem on a cruise ship. I see a lot of reviews making negative comments about the food, deservedly so. First, the tap water is not drinkable in the cabin, rather important because you must pay 7.50 E for the bottle of water (I thought it was complementary until I read the fine print, but I could replace it once I got the drink package.) THEREFORE, YOU MUST GET THE DRINK PACKAGE for 19.50 E per person per day, everyone in the reservation must get it. Lunch buffet was pretty ordinary unless you were able to find a carving station, but they moved them from day to day and you had to search by the smoke filled central pool area to find them. Any pasta station had a long line. The breakfast buffet was good but it took me several days to realize that they were offering an omelette station. No ketchup/chili sauce/salsa/condiments with breakfast. The dinners were great if you had just been released from prison in Bulgaria. We shared a table with another couple and I think everyone sent back at least one plate during the cruise. There were 7 courses per meal, Appetizer, Soup, Pasta, Main plate, Salad, Cheese and dessert. The portions enabled you to order all 7 courses and not be stuffed. In all fairness, though most of the choices were pretty bland, I enjoyed the Osso Bucco and the Veal Shanks on separate nights, just the portion was so small, 4 bites. We also had service issues the first night, table not set up correctly, missing plates, glasses, cutlery that was not provided during the meal; and one of our group got 3 courses served so late that we had all finished our course before his came. When I reported this to management, I was told that this happens first night of a cruise, but this does not make any sense, because the staff was not there for their first night. I must say that the problems were resolved immediately, and our serve staff was very attentive after that. We won't be booking on COSTA again, until it changes its policies towards smoking and bans smoking from the interior of the ship and in any eating area, including around the pool. I want to commend our Steward, Juan Alvarado, our waiters Jose and Jorge at table 16 in the restaurant. and our photographer, Michael who each provided wonderful service. Juan Alvarado was an absolute pleasure and greeted us with warmth and a smile every day. He made us fell like were there for a family visit. The boat- claims to have 5500 works of art. Well, if you count the nudes on the wallpaper in the corridors, maybe. Some of these "works of art" are large pixeled photo reproductions of actual art. There are some very nice sculptures by the pools, if you can see them through the smoke. (jk :)) We did see the tea set but no coins. The marionettes were nice. But we mostly saw them the first day when exploring because these were in bars and lounges where smoking was mandatory and we could not stand to go into them after day 2. I am still coughing as I write this. The boat was a comfortable cruise. But we missed Santorini because "there was no comfortable anchorage due to winds and waves, not good for the transfers". So the chart of our cruise showed a hard right turn after we were 5 hours out of Athens. Then we cruised to Corfu at 9 knots, after having gone SSE at 17-19 knots. The smoke cloud we were trailing caught up to us. In all fairness, we did have some rolling during the cruise between Athens and Corfu, and at a higher rate of speed, even the 100,000 tons could have been unsteady. One bad aspect of sharing the cruise with 3450 smokers and 50 non smokers (jk, again) was that we created our own crowds everywhere we went. When we arrived at Katakolon for Olympia, there were 25 buses lined up for the Costa Cruise excursions. We took Katakolon Express and were the first bus out and to Olympia 20 minutes earlier than the other ones. By the time we left, we could have walked back to the harbor on the tops of the buses. BTW- HIGHLY RECOMMEND KATAKOLON EXPRESS/PIRAEUS EXPRESS for their Olympia/Athens tours. I thought the furnishings were very tasteful and comfortable, lounges, restaurants and theatres. Our cabin had 2 drop down twin beds to sleep 4. But we all piled into the 2 twins pushed together. The Internet package was $$$$$$$, unbelievable in this day. Equal to 3 months of service at home, at least. Squok Club for kids was conducted in Italian, but daughter is flexible and made friends in all languages. She produced coloring and a mask. They had a stage production the 5th day that they all participated in, very nice with lots of costumes. They did show movies, in Italian, which included Tangled and Wreck it Ralph, both of which we knew. Since daughter is a movie-a-holic, she was happy. Daughter was sold on going to Squok Club from day one and never said she did not want to go. We explored Corfu without her, and while I was sorry she missed the Mon Repos museum and Mouse Island (which is a little itty bitty teeny weeny island at the end of the peninsula near the airfield on which there lives a little itty bitty teeny weeny itsy bitsy mouse) I am sure she would have complained about the walking, she was happy at Squok Club. I used the fitness club a couple of times, particularly to avail myself of the steam room to try to clear up my sinuses. Good variety of machines, busiest from 9-11, very quiet before and after. Steam room was great. There was an internal Jacuzzi there, co-ed, but mostly a geriatric hot tub party. I did not see anyone under 55 use it. Overall: so so, even through the smoke. Poor because of it.   Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
I normally cruise with a friend on an 'adult orientated' ship, however my niece turned 18 and I accompanied my sister in law on this cruise as her birthday gift. I had read reviews on Costa and was not looking forward to this ... Read More
I normally cruise with a friend on an 'adult orientated' ship, however my niece turned 18 and I accompanied my sister in law on this cruise as her birthday gift. I had read reviews on Costa and was not looking forward to this trip that much. However, after the initial shock to the senses, noise, smoking areas, I settled down and ended up really having fun. Fun is what Costa is all about, and they certainly go all out to make every day as good an experience as you can have. Now, smoking.....I am almost militant about non smoking, and I was prepared for the fact that smoking is allowed throughout the ship, but unlike the previous reviewer I did not find the whole ship to be 'filled with smoke'. It is allowed on one side of the ship, both inside and out, and throughout the Casino. I found that people did stick to this most of the time, and never found it an issue to find somewhere smoke-free. The idea that it would give you sinus problems is frankly ridiculous, and if you have problems with your sinuses, perhaps it is better to travel on another line. In Europe the anti-smoking lobby is far smaller than in the UK, or USA, and Costa would go broke if they banned smoking altogether. Surely this is what the member reviews are for, and if you take the trouble to write one, surely you must have read some! That's all about that. The ship is decorated in a style which is not to my taste, full of bright colours and I found the cafeteria restaurant to be quite dark away from the windows, not helped by the paint used. The food at breakfast was varied, and although the food was not of a luxury standard, it was well cooked and fresh. The lunchtime buffets, were dotted around the decks, and each day was a different nationality buffet, Spanish, German, Italian, and the seafood was really lovely, there was calamari, mussels and large prawns on more than one occasion. In fact, we almost enjoyed the lunches above dinner. Dinner service was not of the standard of Celebrity, but we had a waiter and a bus boy who were pleasant, and helpful, and remembered our drinks order. We personally could never have eaten the 7 courses, and normally a starter, main and possibly an ice cream was enough. My niece generally had the pasta starter as a main, and there was no problem with this, in fact they were always accommodating, even though they were run off their feet. Several evenings they had a 'party' type night, and the poor waiters had to either stand with torches, and our waitress even took part in some dancing on the balcony! Although my niece is 18, she is slightly special needs, and as we took the drinks deal, they also allowed her to just have the children's one, saving my sis in law about 70.00. I looked all over for a comparison to see if the drink deal was good value and couldn't find one, so I'm giving some examples here. Cocktails are 6.95, spirits 5.30, cappuccino 2.50, soft drinks (glass) 2.95, beer 4.90. All these are in euros, and plus 15% service. It doesn't take much adding up to see that 19.50 euros per day including the 15%, is an amazing deal. We're not big drinkers, but with a couple of coffees, and 3 or 4 drinks per day, we saved hugely! The shows were amazing, and not all in Italian at all, as good as West End, and although I don't usually attend on other lines, I found myself looking forward to them! In all, the crew and staff were really friendly, the officers much in view, and everyone went to so much trouble for you to have a good time. In the end, you get what you pay for, and you need to check on smoking, as they say, you pay your money and you take your choice. If you want value for money, great service, and lots of fun...give them a try! Go Costa! Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
The good (and there were lots of good areas) are as follows, beautiful ship exceptionally clean in all areas, lovely inside cabin 8239 on deck 8,spacious not claustrophobic excellent staff! The catering/bar staff were hard working ... Read More
The good (and there were lots of good areas) are as follows, beautiful ship exceptionally clean in all areas, lovely inside cabin 8239 on deck 8,spacious not claustrophobic excellent staff! The catering/bar staff were hard working courteous and always smiling and a pleasure to chat to ! Lots of choice for breakfast and lunch in the buffet restaurant but if you wanted to eat there in the evening only Pizza/Salad is available it would appear.This didn't bother us as we like to dress up and ate in the restaurant every evening.If you like to have large portions in the restaurant then go for the 7 courses that are available, we didn't feel any more than 4-5 was needed ourselves but that's just our opinion ! The drinks package was amazing providing most premium brands of beers spirits wine and cocktails, also fruit juices large bottled waters and speciality coffees but not coffee with alcohol content. Lots of bars all very different from each other all with music/singing ! The ports of call were amazing ! Value for money exceptional !! The not so good- EMBARKATION - this has got to be the longest time we have ever had to wait to get on board over 3 hrs from getting to Port to getting on board! SAFETY DRILL - long winded, drawn out, little information regarding what was going on staff keeping watch over us constantly counting rows of people and the public address in so many languages we lost count, muster station with lots of people all wearing life jackets for so long in the heat that thought we would all pass out before we really new what was going on. Think these areas could be worked on !! ENTERTAINMENT - not bad on occasions however on others quite boring and amateurish in fact the show on the last night which was done by many on board crew members was by far the most entertaining and memorable. Room for improvement - The food, not the worst we have ever eaten but certainly not as good as other cruise lines we have been with. The words " could do better " spring to mind. AREAS TO WATCH OUT FOR- mandatory daily charge which CANNOT be opted out of, INTERNET please please keep a watch on this !! we had very poor coverage most days with little or no signal, my partner needed access on a daily basis to keep in touch with his business at home, he opted to buy a Internet package which should not have cost him more than around $30 however when our final bill was made up he realised something very wrong as he had been billed completely different from what he had requested and had a bill for over $170 !! as it was only presented to our cabin in the early hours of the morning he went straight to customer services upon waking to be told that nothing could be done by them as the bill was already made up and that he would have to correspond with Costa upon return to UK, this did spoil things for us and we are currently in discussion with Costa over this. A WORD OF WARNING - CHECK YOUR BILL WITH RECEPTION BEFORE THEY PRINT IT OUT JUST IN CASE ANYTHING IS AMISS AS YOU HAVE TO PAY REGARDLESS ONCE IT HAS BEEN PRINTED OUT !! We loved this itinerary of Ports visited on this cruise however we were disappointed to find that Santorini and Dubrovnik were only for a few hours and would have preferred longer here and due to ship not docking at quayside and a tender system for transfer we actually only had around 2 hours ashore by time our numbers were called. Overall opinion of Costa Magica- would we use this line again? a very easy answer Yes we would !! Was it good value ? - It was exceptional value ! - Would we recommend to others ? - we certainly will be !! Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
Costa Magica Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 3.0 3.1
Entertainment 4.0 3.2
Public Rooms 4.0 3.9
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.7
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.2
Enrichment 1.0 2.7
Service 4.0 3.7
Value For Money 4.0 3.2
Rates 3.0 3.9

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