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288 Costa Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

We wanted to try to cruise with Costa. The embarkation was not organized. People lined up wanted to get to the ship as soon as possible, despite we got our number to got in. The room was cline. Lunch for the first day was fine, but ... Read More
We wanted to try to cruise with Costa. The embarkation was not organized. People lined up wanted to get to the ship as soon as possible, despite we got our number to got in. The room was cline. Lunch for the first day was fine, but no coffee or tea, had to wait till 16.00 pm,unless if we pay for it. Dinner was not good, soup was not hot, very hectic. The waiter was unpatient to take the orders. Because he was alone to take care many tables. No explanation from daily menu. We have to ordered very quick. After dinner we had to wait long time to get our coffee , because they had to get from the bar. On the following day our coffee were served before dinner. We had 3 times fire drills, which was disrupted our nap. We booked premium balcony, unfortunately the room below the deck pool, we could hear when people moving the chairs. The worst night was on the 3rd day and the 5th day of the cruise, when they had loud party on the deck pool. We tried to call the receptionist, no body pick up the phone after 15 minutes of waiting. I had to go on the 3rd floor to complain about the noises. But no body listen to us. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
The Costa Magica is not the most modern ship in Costa's fleet (2004) but it's still in good condition and probably more importantly it's a happy ship. It has a ship's compliment of just over a thousand and carries just ... Read More
The Costa Magica is not the most modern ship in Costa's fleet (2004) but it's still in good condition and probably more importantly it's a happy ship. It has a ship's compliment of just over a thousand and carries just over two thousand passengers. All of the senior officers including the captain are Italian, while stewards, security, catering etc are provided by mainly Asian staff - all of whom are very friendly and helpful and probably underpaid by EU standards. Costa includes a surcharge in the price to cover tips which means that you don't have to tip the staff but a ten euro 'thank-you' to your steward or waiter at the end of the cruise will be very much appreciated unless you actually believe that the company accountant who dreamed up the surcharge also insisted that it was paid to the people who are looking after you. We took a Mediterranean 10 day cruise that took in Italy, France, Spain and the Canary Islands during late September which meant that there were very few school-age children on board. The passengers were predominantly Italian and French along with a few hundred German, Dutch & Spanish and from what I could make out possibly a dozen British and American. However all of the crew speak English so you can order a drink without having to consult a phrase book. We were lucky enough to have a cabin with a balcony. The cabin was clean, the bed was comfortable, there is a thermostat to control the temperature and there was a couch, desk and plenty of room to stow cases and hang clothing - although if you have a lot it might be worth bringing a few extra coat hangers with you.The shower/toilet was clean with plenty of hot water and towels were provided for the bathroom, and also for use with the on-deck sun loungers. The TV in the cabin broadcast 4 ship's channels giving information on where you are/where you are going together with timings, excursions, what's going on, stuff you can buy etc. The info being in all of the main languages including English.. The rest of the channels are mainly Italian, German and French but there is the ubiquitous BBC World should you need it but no other English language channels - But then you haven't come on a cruise to watch TV have you! Dining - I have to say that the food was much better than I had expected. We took breakfast in the self-service buffet-type restaurant where a good selection of both continental and cooked food was available. The restaurant tended to be very busy for breakfast and (I don't know why this is but it seems to be a world-wide occurrence) there will inevitably be an elderly passenger carrying a tray loaded with more food than they can possibly eat who either stops dead in their tracks in front of you and then looks around as if unsure as to why he/she is there or marches resolutely to the front of the queue to grab a coffee as if their very life depends on it whilst ignoring everyone else. Strangely this only seems to happen at breakfast time and seems to be universal rather than confined to any particular cruise line - if you are going to have some minor irritations it will be with your fellow travelers rather than the staff who seem to have been blessed with an additional 'niceness' gene. The main meal is in the evening at one of the restaurants on board where you will be allocated your seat for the length of the cruise and will keep the same waiter during your time on board. We had originally specified a table for two but on the first night were seated at a table with 4 other people. Having pointed out this out to the staff we were then given a table for two for the rest of the cruise. The evening meal consisted of six courses with a choice of starters, main course and desserts and I have to say that each meal was very good indeed and is the sort of thing that you would find in a good Italian restaurant rather than in a spaghetti house. In between breakfast and the evening meal, brunch, lunch, tea, supper, snacks etc can all be had from cakes to a burger to a roast dinner. When you buy your cruise there is the option to have wines, coffees, beers and spirits included in the price. This is called Brindiamo and it is well worth having unless you intend to drink only water, which of course you won't as you're on holiday. If you intend to drink cocktails every night rather than G&Ts or Barcardis or beers then there is another deal called Piu Gusto which costs a bit more. Also if you really, really must have lobster stuffed with cavier and sprinkled with saffron washed down with Champagne there is a select restaurant where you can pay extra to eat away from the rest of us un-washed masses. Smoking - Is allowed in designated areas and also on individual balconies. Stuff to do on board - Plenty of things for all tastes really, swimming in the (small) pools, open-air hot tubs, dance classes, zumba, shopping, sauna and gym, hairdressers and beauticians. In the evenings there are shows in the theater which range from good to mediocre (not surprising as they are catering to an audience that communicates in perhaps a dozen different languages). a number of bars ranging from dance-hall size to piano bar most of them with music, also a night club/disco, and a casino. Stuff to do ashore - Do your homework before taking an excursion as sometimes you will be better off making your own arrangements rather than paying Costa to do so. For example when we docked in Malaga we took an excursion to a beach which meant a 45 minute coach ride followed by 3 hours sunbathing then 45 minutes back. There was actually an equally good beach within 500 yards of the dock which was as good if not better and we could have simply walked there. Reckon on any transfer times you are given to be twice as long as stated due to the faffing about getting people on transport and if you only end up with three or four hours in port you may be better off either making your own plans or even staying aboard as it means that the jacuzzi isn't crowded and you have a better chance of grabbing a good sun-lounger. A note on leaving and re-boarding the ship: When you first arrive you will be issued with a 'Costa card' this is a card similar to a credit card with a bar-code on it and is used to open your cabin door, pay for any purchases or extras you might want and it allow you to leave and re-enter the ship so there is no need to take your passport ashore, it works very well and is one of those things that you think "I wish I'd thought of that". Dress code - Costa aren't aimed at the high end of the market, but neither are they bargain bucket. They are also European rather than Brit so you won't be allowed in the restaurant for your evening meal wearing an Arsenal shirt, shorts and flip-flops, also you won't have to drape yourself with gold and diamonds while having to listen to Nigel and Joan from Crawley bore you to death telling you how much their house is worth. Thank God. Each day there will be a news sheet delivered to your cabin giving the activities for the following day and suggesting the dress for the evening. It isn't mandatory but can be an enjoyable thing to do. During our cruise the dress code was Town - smart-ish but not over the top. Red and black. White night (Get yourself a white suit from Amazon, it's only about 40 euros and you might never get another chance). Red, white and green (Italian) and Gala (posh evening frock, fancy knickers and uncomfortable heels girls). Disabled access - There were around 20 wheelchair users on board and access did not appear to be a problem. also there was allocated seating for the disabled in the restaurants and by the pools and the staff appeared to be very attentive and helpful. Stuff that went wrong - The battery packed up on the cabin safe and it took 3 days before it was fixed and that was about it. Would we do it again? Yes I think that we probably will. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
It was a terrible cruise. The staff was very rude, the beverage package we chose, Brindiamo, didn't have bottled water and for the night we had to buy bottles of water, even if the water was included in the package. When I went to ... Read More
It was a terrible cruise. The staff was very rude, the beverage package we chose, Brindiamo, didn't have bottled water and for the night we had to buy bottles of water, even if the water was included in the package. When I went to hospitality desk to ask, I said that in the offer it doesn't say that they are offering us drinks (included water) only in the glass. The receptionist smiled very ironic at me and said: "But it neither say that you have bottled ones". The service charge was mandatory, even if I wasn't satisfied by services and in other cruises that I went the service charge was optional (with MSC, Norwegian). The activities were very boring, compared with others from another cruise lines, in the theater was the same daily show, under another names.The food was poor, based especially on pastas and fish. I ate pastas in those 9 days for my entire life. Pizza was exposed on the dinner buffet, but if you wanted to eat pizza you had to buy it (in other cruise lines it's included). Cocktails were very poor, based on sodas and syrup (every cocktail). No natural juices. The dinner was available untill 9.00 PM. After this hour, you can eat only if you buy at the restaurant (with MSC we ate pizza at 11 PM). The itinerary was not very good organised, we only stayed 3-4 hours in big ports, the rest of the time you'll be bored to death on the sea. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
This trip was an anniversary gift to my elderly parents. The trip was quite a disappointment. It felt as operator was trying to save on everything (service, entertainment, staffing, etc). It was all not that bad if not they lost my parents ... Read More
This trip was an anniversary gift to my elderly parents. The trip was quite a disappointment. It felt as operator was trying to save on everything (service, entertainment, staffing, etc). It was all not that bad if not they lost my parents suitcase with a lot of valuables in it, as of November 4th the baggage was not returned to them even tho we made countless attempts to contact the operator in regards to this. My parents are cruise enthusiasts and been on more then 20 different cruises and never they were so disappointed in their trip, not to mention it was not cheap at all. Complete lack of customer service makes it even worse. My mother had all her glasses (and believe me those were not cheap glasses) in that suitecase and she really struggles without them, operator showed NO INTEREST in returning missing baggage or providing other means of compensation, feels like they only concerned about collecting the money. Will not use again or recommend to a friend! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
'Costa Luminosa' is a classic cruise liner, 8 years old, with a more traditional form, compared to newer ships. Interiors appeared to me like some sort of 'Art Deco', with lots of colorful illumination and warm colors. ... Read More
'Costa Luminosa' is a classic cruise liner, 8 years old, with a more traditional form, compared to newer ships. Interiors appeared to me like some sort of 'Art Deco', with lots of colorful illumination and warm colors. There were always lots of free sun loungers on the spacious sun decks, and the ship did never appear crowded. Everybody on board was friendly, caring and attentive. After arriving at about 11:30am, it took me nearly 3 hours from the port gate through the entire embarkation process to my stateroom, long waiting times again and again, but I was repeatedly addressed in German language. The staff and crew was always doing a good job in talking to their guests in each their languages. The security drill took less than 30 minutes and was held in Italian and English languages; movies with other languages were available on the TV in the stateroom the entire cruise. I found some clocks going wrong on board, and generally, light wear and tear. Since I am a buffet type of passenger, and I generally try to avoid long sessions in the main dining rooms, I did not visit the main dining room. In the evenings, the 'Ristorante Andromeda' was open from 07:30pm to 09:00pm usually, a very limited time for a buffet restaurant, not so Italian like, and there were queues sometimes, since the buffets are arranged on long bars with a narrow alley, not allowing guests to jump. Plastic table ware was used, but the offered food was among the best things on the cruise, although two typical Italian foods like pizza and ice cream were not included in the cruise fare. Choice of food was very good with a big variety, not just pasta, but also different kinds of fish and meat, even the best possible Bratwurst, always very freshly prepared opposite to the buffets, and very delicious small desserts from the patisserie. The spoons and forks at the buffet had greasy handles sometimes, and food was partially the same for lunch and dinner or dessert and 'La Merenda' on some days. Not so bad, since it tasted always very good. I had the 'Pranzo & Cena' beverage package, since only different beverages for breakfast and tea time were included in the cruise fare. Usually, only one side of the restaurant with each 2 different buffets was used in the evenings, thus there was always more free seating on the other side of the restaurant. At rush times, the restaurant was full, and it was hard for me to find free seating. 'Costa Crociere' offers some very few beverage 'Vending Machines' in the 'Ristorante Andromeda'. The guest can insert the 'Carta Costa' and choose between 6 different refreshment drinks. The given price on the monitor will then either be added to the board account, or was already paid with a beverage package. I tasted cool water instead of the expected lemonade, and was also astonished about the amount that came out of the machine, it filled the plastic cup only half, an estimated of 150ml. The guest can also get beverages at the end of every buffet line in the 'Ristorante Andromeda' at lunch and dinner, manually served by always very friendly staff, a full plastic cup with 250ml to 300ml out of cans or bottles. The 'Carta Costa' must be shown or handed over to the staff for paying therefore, any purchased beverage package is noted with its code on the card. Tap water is free, available from dispensers in the 'Ristorante Andromeda'. The 'Samsara Spa' crew was always very busy with promoting their offers, paper ads were delivered to the stateroom and handed out to guests near the gangway when returning from excursions. Hand disinfection was available at every buffet, but was not taken very seriously by most guests on this cruise. The entertainment program offered something for everyone, every day, with live music sometimes. Entertainment was as multilingual as the entire cruise, a charming Babylonian language jumble. I had purchased the Internet M package with a bandwidth for the entire cruise, and the internet speed was good on board. Excursions; I only booked a transfer from Katakolon to Olympia, the fare was ok, the bus on time, the journey times shorter than announced, but the stay of only 2 hours was too short for an interested visitor like me. Generally, short stays of the ship in the harbors with only one single full day stay at Mykonos. As on most ships, orientation support lacked on 'Costa Luminosa' as well. No port and starboard signs, and no stateroom direction signs in the staircase halls. I learnt after dinner on the last evening of the cruise about the departure procedure for the next morning, about only 3 hours before I had to put my baggage in front of the stateroom door at midnight. Staff at the 'Hospitality Service Desk' was very friendly and gave me an earlier disembarkation slot, since my assigned time was way too late for catching my flight. Disembarkation then proceeded very quickly the next morning. On-board accounting was correct. Thank you 'Costa Crociere' for a wonderful cruise with so good food, charming multilingualism and your warm Italian hospitality on bella 'Costa Luminosa'! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
First of all be aware: when they want you to buy the cruise the small words hidings behind the lines. did you know any person need to pay 10 euros plus to the privce? 70 euros more! i didn't see it because it is written in ... Read More
First of all be aware: when they want you to buy the cruise the small words hidings behind the lines. did you know any person need to pay 10 euros plus to the privce? 70 euros more! i didn't see it because it is written in small latters so you won't know untiil the demand it on board. nobody will tell you, just because you signd already and now you will need to pay. After i already gave tips to any batrhender!! the price is include 15% more for service aotumaticolly!! even if you take something from the minibar they will take 15% service charge!! for what?!? so 15% more of service, plus 10 euros per day to person, in my case 2 people, (170-190 euros more just for service!!!). i even took in 5 euros package for social networks internet one day they took me 3 euros more for signing and i did it alone! in ther internet! no service! didn't i paid enough on the cruise already?? the other thing all day long same food in breakfast and dinner. If you are not Italian don't go! because almost al the activities and shows in italian!! if i would know everything of it in the beggining i will not even come to the cruise! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
I chose this cruis for the itinerary and Costa's Italian touch. I really loved this boat, the food both in the buffet and at night, our premium balcony cabin and the staff. We only took a ship excursion in Barcelona. We sail ... Read More
I chose this cruis for the itinerary and Costa's Italian touch. I really loved this boat, the food both in the buffet and at night, our premium balcony cabin and the staff. We only took a ship excursion in Barcelona. We sail from lovely Civitavecchia. Then we sailed to Savona, Marseille, Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca and Cagliari, returning to Civitavecchia. All are fantastic places. If you like Italian food and products cruise on the Diadema. Every night, we drank Prosecco or Sprtitz during the shows. On our table for 2, we had a ncice bottle of Montepulciano d'Abruzzo (paid). We had the free water package for lunch and dinner. The ship is very modern and the ambiance is fantastic. A lot of bars to hang on with live music. I liked the shops and the outside promenade boarding the restaurants on Costa Diadema. We ate at the pizzeria ( Diadema makes its own fresh mozzarella) and at the Amarillo gelateria (great gelatos) Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Wow where do I start?? 7 family and friends first time cruisers. Flew into Venice and transferred to the amazing ship on the pre arranged bus..painless security and embarkation and a really friendly welcome to the ship from the great ... Read More
Wow where do I start?? 7 family and friends first time cruisers. Flew into Venice and transferred to the amazing ship on the pre arranged bus..painless security and embarkation and a really friendly welcome to the ship from the great staff. Luggage handled by Costa and placed outside our cabins...obtained a costa card that would become our best friend for the next week...it goes everywhere with you..no getting on or off the ship without it or drinks from the bar. Having read numerous reviews was a little worried about the cabin size but no worries at all...premium balcony cabin had a queen size bed ,table and sofa,three single wardrobes with hangers (but did take some of my own hangers) set of storage shelves with the safe in and cupboards under a surface with a mirror above and hairdryer...a full length mirror was on the inside of the wardrobe door. Plenty of shelves in the bathroom and great power in the shower and plenty of hot water..dispenser of shower gel in the shower. The cabins were cleaned daily... you had a choice of morning or afternoon cleaning..lovely hard working professional Frankie looked after us well. There were 2chairs and a table on the balcony ideal for a quiet afternoon with a book and watch the scene changing in front of you The food...oh the food! Again after mixed reviews was a little worried but again no need to be! Hot and cold choices for breakfast...seated in the restaurant or at the buffet all hot if needed to be or cold if needed to be...lunch...3 courses seated in the restaurant or tremendous choice in the buffet meat fish and vegetarian and accompaniments at each sitting....afternoon tea...focaccia sandwiches or filled cobs always along with cake and fresh fruit..and of course tea or coffee dinner was an amazing 4 course affair seated at our own table each night...with differing dress codes which you found out on the daily diary sent to your room We had purchased a drinks package with meals and were very glad we did...I would purchase an all drinks next time...the only minus point was the seating at lunch if you wanted the buffet it was a scramble to get a seat. The entertainment was great..shows each night and days were packed with things to do if you wanted.Being an Italian ship and many different nationalities made listening to all the introductions in all the languages a bit monotonous We went on 3 costa excursions which were well organised and for first timers we felt safe. The tuk tuks in Dubrovnik were amazing with very informative guides...there were chances to do your own thing too Looking already at booking the next one...if you're looking to book...do! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
I booked this cruise because of the itinerary and the very good price. We have been on several other cruises in the Carnival brand i.e Cunard X1 Princess X4 and Carnival X1 plus also NCL X2 and Royal Caribbean X1 . I was expecting some ... Read More
I booked this cruise because of the itinerary and the very good price. We have been on several other cruises in the Carnival brand i.e Cunard X1 Princess X4 and Carnival X1 plus also NCL X2 and Royal Caribbean X1 . I was expecting some compromises due to the very keen price... what I wasn't expecting was the constant penny pinching for example no tap water or coffee with meals outside of the breakfast time without additional charge.It is also the most aggressive sale of Drinks packages I have ever seen 30 euros per day plus...you have to drink a lot to make that worthwhile and many people were. The ship itself was very clean and high standard certainly having the Italian sparkle. I knew about the compromises on the multi language being mainly European clientele my wife and I were okay with that. The menu is European focused and we really liked the menu in the formal dining room (I like pasta and Italian and sea food) however the buffet was very limited choice compared to other ships and much more restrictive hours presumably to keep costs down... it was even additional charge for pizza!. Entertainment by the formal ships company was good but several of the nights were just Karaoke by the ships entertainment crew in Butlins red coat style not really cruising standard by any stretch. Trieste Easy walk and okay for 4 hours not fantastic but ok. Corfu 2.5 Km into town not really enough time allowed here... we arrived late and due to weather only 3 hrs so did not see much beyond the immediate town. Katakolon good trip to Olympia for 15 euros with Costa...and enough time to see. Mykanos landing by tender but nice place and decent time allowed. Dubrovnik...this was missed out and went to Kotor in Montenegro instead which was lovely. In summary great potential but I do not think we will be cruising Costa again.... an inclusive drinks package would remove some of the grumbles on penny pinching. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
We chose this cruise because we flew into London for 2 day -took Eurostar to Paris for 2 days -then train to Marseilles. We Ubered from St.Charles train station for 21euros, great uber driver, we embaraked about 2 pm with a very short ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we flew into London for 2 day -took Eurostar to Paris for 2 days -then train to Marseilles. We Ubered from St.Charles train station for 21euros, great uber driver, we embaraked about 2 pm with a very short line.This is a first time for us so even as we didnt know what steps to take we made it without a problem. We went straight to the cabin and greeted by our new best buddy Rommel. He was great, attentive, and cleaned our room like twice a day. Our beds were put together to make the large bed which i kept falling in the middle all night, but oh well. We had the inside room, no window It was pretty large and the bathroom was large too. We could put our luggage under the bed and it had a small fridge. had all-in-one shampoo/soap in the shower. Overall i was impressed with the size of the room. We had breakfast brought to the room for 10 extra euros a day. All carbs, no meat, so i went out to the buffet to add cold cuts. Breakfast buffet does not have hot food that i could remember,only cold cuts, bread,cereal, danishes,donuts. negative on eggs or bacon. Buffet food was good, there were certain days that the buffet had my favorites like Prawn, Paella etc. I think that was when we docked in Spain. I preferred the dining food over the buffet. Our seated dining was a table for 2 with the view of the ocean in the back, they said that was the best seat in the house. It was very romantic. Our waiter Nyoman was training and he was shy at first, but day 2 and 3 etc, he loosened up and felt comfortable with us too. I danced with the waiters on Italy night and it was great fun. Gelato and crepe bar was cute and colorful but extra cost. We got the middle drink package 26 euros a day, gave me all the sodas i wanted and a few cocktails(i dont drink much), but my husband was constantly out of package for the drinks he preferred. So he settled for Gin and tonic, so maybe the third tier was better but didnt match me, the non-drinker, in cost. Coffee was excellent Illy cappucinos all day long. The announcements are in italian with brief English translations so might as well be all italian coz i didnt undertand a thing, but thats ok coz the itineray plan was in english. The Shows were one main show an evening, and band nights in different bars on the ship. I didnt care for the shows, seemed mediocre but the bands were fun, also in italian or english songs with accents The singing contest was fun, also an italian host. No translation except for the American songs they sang. There were always dancing lessons all over the ship and plenty of people joining in. the day activities were few so its best to get off the ship and check out barcelona, palma de mallorca, civitavecchia, savona , and spend the day or half a day outside. It was very very hot outside this time of year. Pools are very small, So i never used my bathingsuit because it was too tight and crowded. Photo guys were out to sell. They didnt have choices in the packages basically it was 14,20,30 euros for individuals or 400euros for all. Couldnt afford to buy them all. We took a drop off costa sanctioned bus to Rome and we walked it ourselves. Then we ubered to the Vatican. It was cheaper and at our own pace. We felt we did the right thing for us. All went smooth and got back to the ship right on time. Embarking was chaotic so we sardined our way back in. Disembarking was easy and we found our way back to the train by taxi because uber couldnt get in 28 euros. For the inexperienced cruisers like us, we were very satisfied, but all the experienced ones may find the need for more activities on the ship. My husband says he loves cruising now, so thats all of it in a nutshell. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We chose this cruise because of port of embarkation convenience and itinerary. Also had cruised before with Costa, and had an overall great experience. The embarkation procedure was not very smooth, but forgivable because it was not ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of port of embarkation convenience and itinerary. Also had cruised before with Costa, and had an overall great experience. The embarkation procedure was not very smooth, but forgivable because it was not the main embarkation port (cruise normally starts at Venice, we embarked in Katakolon). The ship was adequate, with all the usual amenities, fairly good condition. The cabin was on the small-ish side but understandable since it was an inside cabin at the lower deck. The cabin attendant was polite, but seemed overwhelmed with the number of cabins he had to attend to (reduction in staff?). Also we were charged minibar usage we never made. The amount was returned after complaining about it. Additionally, there may or may not be a situation with the blue towels (pool towels): twice the cabin attendant gave us back fewer than the initial number (there is a plaque when you arrive that states any missing towels will incur a 20 euro fine). I would like to believe it was an honest mistake. The dining was the highlight of the cruise, as the food was consistently good and well presented. However, we were assigned to just one waiter (as it seemed to be the normal in this cruise) who was not overly friendly. Also very bad decision not to include water with the restaurant meals (you have to actually buy it). The buffet restaurants (which we used fewer times) had also good quality food, but it seemed that the quantity was very tightly controlled. The main entertainment (theater/shows) was a hit-or-miss affair. The highlight was the "Voice of the sea" final. The singing/dancing troupe was adequate, and probably better than the remaining one-man-shows. Also one of the shows was repeated on two separate days in a 7-night cruise. The various activities however, where probably geared toward either humiliating a guest for the enjoyment of the other guests, or bluntly advertising a for-pay on board service available. The service in the bars was generally good, however the best (in our opinion) venue which is the gelateria on deck 3 was not adequate (too many customers for the assigned waitstaff). The itinerary was changed just before we embarked to visit Argostoli instead of Mykonos (not a big deal for us, but I can imagine the disappointment for someone having traveled from afar just for this visit). The visits and excursions were generally good, however very brief in some cases (Trieste is 4 hours at best). The excursions were very expensive for what they were offering (the exception being the visit of the caves of Postojna which was excellent). Case in point: the offered shuttle to take you from the cruise terminal in Corfu to the old town, is 10 euro per person. A taxi for the same distance (up to 4-5 people) is just 5 euro total. We traveled with our two children (pre-school age) who probably enjoyed it more than us adults. Costa seems to have taken the wrong approach, compared with their past. It used to be great value, great food, but now it seems that they are trying to compete on price on the initial ticket, and then attempt to monetize the rest after you board. The cost cutting is also obvious: no more free pizza, no more free ice cream, no more free water (outside the buffet restaurant), obvious reduction in staff (dining and cabin). Also the decision to automatically deduct the tips every day (instead of asking for it at the end) has probably an averse effect on the behavior of the crew in general - they are definitely trying, but honestly they are not really compelled to. I would probably try with a different Carnival brand, but overall our experience with Royal Caribbean was better. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
My girlfriend and I chose this cruise for its itinerary - places we had yet to visit - and price, it was a little cheaper than the competition for the itinerary and time. It was also the first time cruising with Costa, although I have 25+ ... Read More
My girlfriend and I chose this cruise for its itinerary - places we had yet to visit - and price, it was a little cheaper than the competition for the itinerary and time. It was also the first time cruising with Costa, although I have 25+ cruises in my history. We embarked in Venice, and the embarkation process was well-organized and smooth, although lengthy, we waited 2-hours before our number was called. Ship - it has all the essential and standard ingredients of a cruise ship with nothing special, when compared to other ships - no swimming pool slides, no climbing wall, no bowling alley, etc. It has pools and jacuzzis, bars and restaurants, etc. All well-kept, well-cleaned and the ship's public places are all nicely decorated and glitzy to provide a nice cruising experience. Cabin - We had an inside cabin in the front part on deck 4. The cabin is of reasonable size for a cruise ship. A little homework would have told us that this cabin sits right above the ship's theater on decks 2 and 3, an area to avoid if you like to take an occasional siesta or sleep early. During shows or practices (usually during siesta time) the cabin vibrates, shakes, and dances to the the loud music in the theater below, so during those times, you need to be out and about, or enjoying the show below. Dining - Here is where Costa definitely comes short. The buffet - reputed on all cruises as the place to eat an any time - is actually on a schedule, it opens a and closed at specific times just like the restaurants. So if you miss the dinner time assigned to you, or do not make it during the opening times, well, you need to wait until the next opening time to eat. There are no 24-hour places to eat on board. Coffee and water - On every other cruise lines I took, these are two drinks available 24/7. Not on Costa. Access is timed for coffee to breakfast time (7-11 in the buffet, 8-8:30 in the restaurant) and tea-time (4:00 to 5:30 pm). The rest of the time No Coffee! Not even in the restaurants at lunch or dinner. You will be invited to get you coffee from the bar (and pay for it, of course). If you scream and insist, they will tell you OK, then make you wait until you get tired and leave. Entertainment and activities - similar to all other cruises although I really like the Broadway style shows on this one. Service - The staff will tell you where to sit and where to go - do not expect any options or choice of table - it run like a summer camp. However, they will do it nicely. Ports and shore excursions - I have cruised enough to learn to avoid the ship's excursions and book my own with local tout operators (and save a bundle of money, while gaining much more flexibility) and usually take a nice walk around the city and a stop at a nice beach. Knowing all this, I will not cruise with Costa again, or if I do - I may forget - I will actually buy their drink package and include that cost when comparing prices with other cruise lines that actually do provide better all-inclusive services. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
This was our first cruise experience.. and we are already planning for our second time, so i can say it was nice, defintely! I loved the ship and the itinerary, quite less the dining: the buffet was too crowded and quite often with poor ... Read More
This was our first cruise experience.. and we are already planning for our second time, so i can say it was nice, defintely! I loved the ship and the itinerary, quite less the dining: the buffet was too crowded and quite often with poor quality. Room service was very good and frequent but bar service was not as good: waiters seems to avoid looking at you when they are even partialy busy, and it's not a nice sensation. Pool are also too small and crowded and so i never used them I loved samsara spa very much, even if, in my opinion, entrance fee is a quite too expensive (35 €/day/person). Squok (mini) club is very small but the service is fine and my child loved it. Unfortunately, due to rough sea, captain choosed not to land in our main stage: Mykonos... i'm just wondering if any other captain would make the same decision. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
I wanted to take my mom on a cruise for her upcoming 65th birthday as she loves cruises and they're usually the best way to relax and visit so many different countries/places. We have cruised before with Norwegian Cruise Line and I ... Read More
I wanted to take my mom on a cruise for her upcoming 65th birthday as she loves cruises and they're usually the best way to relax and visit so many different countries/places. We have cruised before with Norwegian Cruise Line and I have cruised myself several times with Carnival, but as she lives in Bosnia and Herzegovina now, so the closest and the best cruise that worked for the dates I was visiting her was Costa Diadema 7 day cruise out of Civitavecchia. I noticed right away that on our Costa cards there was a designation of WaterUSA, so to our surprise this meant that you could only get water for free, without being charged, while you were at the restaurant/buffet during breakfast, lunch or dinner hours. Otherwise, they charged for a glass/bottle of water. Same goes for juices, which were only available during the breakfast hours. This was our very first shocker. Dinner experience was horrendous. You are assigned to a restaurant at a specific time, so you have to go there during the assigned time, otherwise you would need to go to the buffet. Food quality was good, but the dining experience every time, except for the last night was horrendous. I'll explain. We wanted to change to 2nd sitting option and that request would need to go to effect next evening, not the same evening; fine, not a big deal. We go next evening to the second sitting and needless to say that waiter only the first night was ok/kinda friendly for the first sitting which we changed. The waited at the 2nd sitting our 2nd night seemed to care less about customer service or just showing a smile, everything seemed like a chore and like a bother to him. At the end, I noticed that my card was not returned once I got to my cabin after ordering a glass of wine. I went back to the restaurant and he claimed that he gave it back to me and to talk to the Maitre D. She was confused as to why I was directed to talk to her, but she tried her best to resolve the issue and mentioned we can request a new card and get it in the room the next day. I got the new Costa Card but lo' and behold all of a sudden my old card was thrown on the floor of the room by someone who obviously dropped it in there. Next day, we obviously didn't even want to go back to our table and requested to be switched to a different one with a different table, so we decided to eat at a buffet, as by now we knew this request wouldn't be completed the same evening, but rather the next day. Next day, our new waiter on the other side of the restaurant seemed overwhelmed and we waited for a while until we were able to place our orders. He noticed that my Costa Card showed the previous table and wanted to tell us we are seated at the wrong table, but I showed him a temporary card given until the new card arrives. Right away, negative kind of attitude. The order by which he took orders didn't seem to match when each party got seated, as other parties that arrived later seemed to get service prior to us already waiting there for a while. Finally, when we placed the orders and the food came to us, he got one of the orders wrong. All in all, it would have been nice to see these waiters be more friendly and not act like we are bothering them by dining there. Our dining took about 2 hours because of all the waiting to order and waiting for food (correct food order). Needless to say, we wanted to see right after that dining experience if we have an option of doing the open seating restaurant Corona Bleu that seemed to have a nicer ambiance. We were told to just go there and that it's free and there is no difference other than having open seating, which would be perfect for us. We went to Corona Bleu the next day and the lady at the front said that it's a 5euro cover charge per person as we would be taking someone else's table. I explained that we were told at our assigned restaurant to come there, but she didn't seem to care to find a solution and just said that I could go back to our assigned restaurant and asked to be assigned to Corona Bleu if there is availability. Of course, that made us go back (due to all sorts of miscommunication happening all the time and lack of customer service), to wait again for next evening to find out if we were able to get the Corona Bleu. We would be notified via letter in our cabin by next day. We opted for dining at the buffet. Next day, no letter, we go to our assigned restaurant to give it and that waiter one more chance, he right away said that an older Italian man is sitting at our table and it's not ours. I was confused and mentioned we were not notified. He seemed almost angry and very unfriendly to have to deal with it, as he referred us to Maitre D who said we were assigned to Corona Bleu. Advising no one has notified us, as was indicated, asked if they can call to mention we are coming, as we don't want to miss the dinner time. Finally, our last night there, all the confusion and unfriendliness, but we got to Corona Bleu and at first our waiter was overwhelmed and didn't seem to know what to do with us, as our table wasn't even set up properly, but he did get us water by telling another waiter to bring it for us so we don't have to wait a long time again. Finally, one of the supervisors was checking to see if everything is going well and we explained our frustration and that even here we weren't sure who our waiter is and it's our last night and this whole experience has been frustrating. He didn't seem to care much either but he listened and sent our waiter, who was indeed very friendly and apologetic and explained he tried to tend to a table with the birthday cake. 2nd Maitre D or manager came that has a higher position that the previous one, Francesco, who really took the time out to listen and resolve the issue, even though it was kind of late, but he did what he could that night to finally make our dining experience a positive one. The waiter with a unique name that unfortunately I can't remember now was indeed very nice and attentive. Francesco tried to make up for all the other negative dining experience days by bringing out a free delicious birthday cake for my mom, as I mentioned it was my birthday present to her in advance, and she didn't want that kind of recognition necessarily as her birthday is not until September, but he did it anyways. Also, he noticed that I was drinking red wine and had the waiter bring me the quality red wine that he likes to have a few glasses of. I wish as he said that we were able to find Francesco sooner, as he was the only one that understood the concept of customer service. Entertainment crew was great, so luckily at least we were able to relax and enjoy the evening dance events with them. They were very energetic, funny, and friendly. The highlight of our cruise was dancing with them. Especially if it's your first time cruising, by all means, please choose a different cruise company, as they simply don't care for customer service or to resolve any issues you will have on the cruise. I have more details of interactions with guest services/reception and so much miscommunication and misguidance on their part as well that would take another page to get into, but the dining experience was really what every night frustrated us and took away from the whole cruise experience and even the quality of food that was actually pretty good. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
The story with Costa started badly from the beginning. It was our first cruise. When we were getting on the cruise, we were attended by a person who barked at us in an incomprehensible language and forbade us to enter because of a ... Read More
The story with Costa started badly from the beginning. It was our first cruise. When we were getting on the cruise, we were attended by a person who barked at us in an incomprehensible language and forbade us to enter because of a non-existent schedule problem. Behind him came an officer on board who, in very bad manners, let us reluctantly pass by the cruiser. On entering, we asked for the Wi-Fi in the Hospitality Service and we were 'greeted' by an Italian woman with very bad manners who made us feel like idiots for asking questions (it's her job to answer them, after all), and informed us that the Wi-Fi service was not only paid, but it was also divided into two RIDICULOUS categories: social networks and internet. Either you paid one or you paid the other. And they charged you 100 euros for 3 GB for the internet. The worst thing was that in addition to the theft of the price if you left the cell phone turned on unused it consumed all the data bought. Of course, this was not advised when offering the "service". We happened to buy the internet and went to dinner and on returning, we no longer had access because the data had been magically consumed. In general, the customer service was appalling. At all times the relationship with the staff was horrible and unwilling. The waiter from the restaurant, for example, charged us with things we didn't consume, brought us the wrong dishes, and was angry when we explained his mistakes. The cleaning of the room was bad: when drawing a curtain, some peanuts showed up on the floor, thrown together with who knows what. The decor, cheap and tasteless. Rome is one of the most important destinations on the itinerary. The cruise arrived in Rome at 8 am and departed at 7 pm. To take advantage of the time, from the excursion office we were suggested to take the train instead of the bus to Rome, on a tour organized by Costa in which they would only leave us in the city (without tour included). In this way, we were promised to arrive in Rome in an hour and a half, so we could be in the city for about seven hours. 8.15 was the time of departure. The bus that took us to the station was delayed by Costa service issues and when we arrived at the station the train had already departed (we learned of this only because we heard our guide speaking on the phone in Italian saying that it had left, because nobody explained anything at all). As a result, they decided to take us to the next train stop. When we arrived, we saw on the tracks a train that looked like it came from the last century; not even seen in third world countries. To our stupor, it was the "fast" train that would take us to Rome. They made us climb on it, but the train did not start. Other passengers told us that the train was broken and that it would not start. Our guides told us that everything was fine and that they were only waiting for authorization to depart. Meanwhile, from inside and with a temperature of 40 degrees (in summer and with the air conditioning turned off), we watched the train driver pacing from one end of the train to the other talking on the cell phone hotly. Finally, we saw him pace one last time, this time with his backpack on his shoulder, and off he went. He had left us in the middle of nowhere. By now it was 11.15. TWO whole hours inside the hot train, which was sealed. Really dangerous. The guides told us that nothing happened, that in a few minutes the train was leaving. With other Spanish speakers, when we saw the driver leave, we got together and decided to pull the emergency levers to get some air and get off the train, which was already a living hell. We asked the Costa guides to send us a bus to take us to Rome. They refused and said we would return to the cruise. We told them that we did not want to lose Rome, but nothing convinced them. At 12, having already lost three hours, the broken train brought us back to our starting point. If we wanted to get to know Rome, we had to sort ourselves out. When we reported this to Costa, all they did was bring some grapes to the room along with a bottle of cheap champagne that did not even reach half a liter, and they gave us back the money for the tour. At no point did they seek compensation in any way for making us lose one of the most important destinations of the cruise. The worst thing is that they treated the money refund as if it were a favor. As a cherry on the cake, the night before the cruise ended, we found that the refrigerator door of the cabin was locked. The bottle of water (which in any part of the world is courtesy of the service and in Costa was charged) and snacks (which of course if consumed were charged) had disappeared. Why? Because as they closed the account at midnight, Costa did not want to risk the consumption of soft drinks or snacks without paying (!!!!!). It is stated that as a rule of the cruise each person had a charge of 10 Euros per day per trip. As 5000 passengers travel, they collect 50,000 Euros daily for gratuities, but they can not conceive losing two Euros if any passenger consumes a snack or a bottle of water the night before departure. This is only a sample of the pettiness of these people; The examples (in just seven days) are too many to write. WE DO NOT RECOMMEND COSTA. At all. Unfortunate experience and unfortunate service. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Sadly this cruise was advertised as all inclusive, meaning water and food should be included. Water was at specific unclear times available on a different deck that we were not stationed on, the food during breakfast and lunch, which one ... Read More
Sadly this cruise was advertised as all inclusive, meaning water and food should be included. Water was at specific unclear times available on a different deck that we were not stationed on, the food during breakfast and lunch, which one could receive after standing in line with many unhappy customers was absolutely disgusting. Dinner was served at a specific time that was assigned to one by chance, if one failed to report to the dining hall within 15 minutes of the beginning of the dinner time one would have to deal with being locked out of the hall. Thus one had to resource to eating at a highly expensive other restaurant located on the ship, each restaurant service was unfriendly and in-comprehensive leading to food poisoning on two occasions. Upon asking for a manager or any person of sort we were greeted with unfriendly hostesses who would become defensive and aggressive. Bookings on the "Costa Card" were incorrect on occasion and additional charges were not removed upon request though many items were double booked. The swimming areas and showers were filthy as well as the deck being unkept and not taken care of. Staff appeared completely untrained in terms of hospitality as in acting aggressively towards simple questions, being completely unable to serve food, communicate with guests and responding politely. None of the people at any information desks were informed in any way about any of the procedures on board, as an experienced traveler who was accompanied by a person has been active in hospitality businesses for years both managing and leading restaurants and bars of well known names in Vienna, this whole vacation which ended up costing over 4.000 for eight days for two people, this was an organized rip off scheme planned by management that hid behind their staff. The major amounts of disinformation were widespread among guests on board leading to a very depressed and frustrated atmosphere. This was for us, and our friends the first and definetely last experience with costa. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
This cruise went to all the places we wanted to visit. Our cabin had a balcony and was very clean and comfortable. Our cabin steward Pravin from India was very friendly and efficient. We thought the food was good and in the sit-down ... Read More
This cruise went to all the places we wanted to visit. Our cabin had a balcony and was very clean and comfortable. Our cabin steward Pravin from India was very friendly and efficient. We thought the food was good and in the sit-down restaurant there was a lovely waiter, another Indian called Jackson. In the late afternoon we would usually visit the Bar Marabile where there was another great character, a waiter from the Philippines called Marck. We had a beverage package so we didn't find that we didn't have extra expense from ordering drinks throughout the day. Our only criticism of Costa is that they sent us a questionnaire after the cruise, they had told us that favourable reviews of excellent staff would improve their chances of promotion. However all the questions were "fill in the dots"and no personal input. All the staff were good but that is why I've mentioned our favourites on this site. We didn't really take part in activities except for a couple of quizzes in the bar so I can't offer an opinion although the talent show by the crew is apparently very good. We didn't take part in any shore excursions, preferring to make our own way, partly because the excursions were quite expensive and often a bit long. There was a fierce heat wave at our destinations and we mostly didn't stay longer than a couple of hours ashore. Back at the boat the pool was mostly empty because everyone is off the boat -good tip if you like a quiet pool. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
I am writing this review because my family felt many differences with other previous cruises. For example, at the Andromeda buffet the opening hours were too limited with periods where you find nothing to eat (only water). In other cruise ... Read More
I am writing this review because my family felt many differences with other previous cruises. For example, at the Andromeda buffet the opening hours were too limited with periods where you find nothing to eat (only water). In other cruise lines you can go to the buffet area to drink a coffee and eat at least pizza or sandwich at any time, making the atmosphere more relaxed and flexible (important if you have children). And when the buffet is open, Andromeda is crowded and is difficult to find a table. In other lines this is not an issue to be stressed on vacations (to stay on schedule and to find a table). There were many teenagers, but some of them playing at the swimming pool (Lido) without care of the elderly or the little kids (jumping and diving), only when they were splashing the cooking show they were stopped by the crew. The Costa Tour staff is very rude, if you ask something they just want to send you out of the ship. All these little things made our experience like you were part of a business chain, and not on vacation. The only places were we felt very nice were the cabin (cabin steward very polite and attentive) and during the dinner at Taurus restaurant. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
The sinking of Costa Concordia in 2012 must have taken to the bottom of the sea the whole company rather than just one vessel since cruising with them today it's rather like flying with Ryan air: whatever you do you get charged. ... Read More
The sinking of Costa Concordia in 2012 must have taken to the bottom of the sea the whole company rather than just one vessel since cruising with them today it's rather like flying with Ryan air: whatever you do you get charged. We are quite accustom to cruising as we must have had at least one cruise every year for the past 10 years,(last one in november 2016) and we accept to pay extra for extra services or premium alternatives but in this case you get the feeling that you haven't pay for your cruse in full before departure. It's one of the most incredible things for an italian company to charge its passengers for pizza as an expensive luxury extra, not to mention an hamburger, or an ice cream. You get charged to sunbathing in the sun deck, or an egg in the morning if you are used to full breakfast rather than continental, the cinema is not longer free, and you are privilege if you get a "good morning" from any of the staff. Its also impossible to see the evening menu before you sit at the table, as all emphasis is on trying to sell you a meal at 28€ extra before you enter to the main restaurant, where if you do not like the main course all alternatives dishes carry a supplement. The ship's photographer will not survive very long I expect if todays going rate is 19,99€ for a souvenir picture. We have had 2 very pleasant cruises in the orient with Costa Victoria in the past which we liked and had no problem at all, but this is the end of the line for this company. At the end of this year we will be back with our favourite Holland -America line, where crew are bending backwards to please you and customers are not constantly squeezed for their pennies to supplement company's revenue. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Cruise Costa Luminosa 1st – 8th July 2017 We have just returned from our first cruise on Costa. After reading lots of negative reports I did go with some trepidation. However the whole cruise exceeded my expectations and wonder if ... Read More
Cruise Costa Luminosa 1st – 8th July 2017 We have just returned from our first cruise on Costa. After reading lots of negative reports I did go with some trepidation. However the whole cruise exceeded my expectations and wonder if I was on the same cruise line as the people complaining. Now this is a positive report so if you are not into that then best stop reading. The whole package was booked through an online travel agent far cheaper than booking direct. There was four of us me, hubby, two daughters age 23 and 16. We chose a premier balcony cabin with drinks package. We had cabin 6339 in the middle of the ship. We left home very early to catch the flight with Ryan air to Venice Marco Polo airport. The flight was fine I was a bit nervous if it was delayed or cancelled then not sure how we would get there. But booking as a package I knew we were protected. I had pre-booked 4 single tickets for the express coach to Venezia P.zzale Roma this was booked direct with their website for 1 euro cheaper than paying on the day. I paid 7 euros per person, if I had booked a return then it would have been cheaper than that. However I wanted to return from Mestre station so booked singles. This worked very well but a bit pushy getting onto the coach. The suitcases are loaded by yourself onto the coach and then showing the ticket you get on. We got to Roma bus station within 25 mins without any stops. I know that ACTV do a bus for the same price but it is a local bus and stops everywhere. We then debated walking from there to the ship but the people mover was there for a reason. I think even though it was walk-able it would not have been easy with suitcases. Don’t be put off by the queues at the people mover it is only for the automated ticket machines that take notes and cards. It will cost 1.5 euros each but worth it. From the people mover it was a 10 min walk to the ship luckily we had wheeled cases. There is a shuttle that takes you there if you can’t manage. We checked in all our luggage and went through to the hall to wait to be called. We were given ‘9’ so knew it wouldn’t be too long. I did find that people with much higher numbers kept trying to get through but were turned away. However they did just stand there blocking the entrance a bit. Why? They are not getting on any quicker. The check-in process was quick and we skirted around the photographer as we were all grubby and didn’t want our photo taken. We then got on board and immediately went to our cabin to drop off our carryons and pick up our cards. First impression of the ship was how beautiful it was. If may be a bit over the top but very glitzy and why not. The glass elevators were amazing so fast. Cabin 6339 Premium balcony We really liked our cabin the room was made up for 4 sleeping and was left that way the whole cruise. This was perfect for us as if we all wanted a nap we all had somewhere to sleep. There was loads of storage two big wardrobes and one shelving unit. There was also a small chest of drawers, a cupboard and two small bedside cupboards. We could fit two of the cases under the bed but the others we stacked in the corner of the room. If we weren’t using both wardrobes then I assume we could have put them there. The cabin was very clean and kept that way the whole cruise. There was a fridge which we used for some snack items. However be aware that on the last night they lock the fridge and not sure what happened to the cake I had in there! I didn’t want it but wondered if there was something else then would it be lost. The balcony was a great size but with 4 in the cabin could do with 4 chairs. However every cruise line we have been on only gives 2 chairs. Dinning We chose the early seating 6:45 pm and wanted a table for 4, which we got. We did debate long and hard about whether we wanted the early or late seating. In hind sight we maybe should have chosen the late seating for some days we were back on board and had missed dinner, but there are pros and cons. The late seating is very late and dinner is a long process. You are not rushed and it would take a couple of hours to have dinner. We loved the slow pace and it felt like an event more than just food. Our server just had 3 or 4 tables to look after so we were very well catered for. He remembered and anticipated our requirements each night. We always had a bottle of wine ready for us and some sprite for our 16 year old. Very polite and courteous young man. The singing and dancing waiters one night was excellent they really put everything into it and got tremendous applause at the end. One night they had to dance with each of the female guests in turn. The quality of the food exceeded my expectations (after reading reviews!). It was perfect for us we love the Mediterranean diet, with the smaller portions and more courses. Some we liked more than others but they were all cooked and presented really well. We tried the breakfast/lunch in the buffet and in the restaurant. It was calmer and more relaxed in the sit down restaurant. We could all eat together and there wasn’t the long queues of the buffet. I liked the breakfast style continental where you could order hot food if you wanted in the restaurant. There was also hot food in the help your self-section of the restaurant. The lunch was all served at the table and was nice to eat in a calm and ordered manor. We did find queuing in the buffet a bit stressful and by the time you have done it and found a table it was cold. Everyone queued nicely but one women insisted on holding up the whole queue as there was no chips left and wanted to wait for them! Why didn’t she stand back and let people through but her plate was not moving from the section! I find buffet stressful in very cruise line though not just Costa. I was disappointed there was no pizza but I knew there wouldn’t be but hoped. You could buy it in the evening but you didn’t see many people doing that. Drinks We bought the drinks package Brindi which turned out to be an excellent buy. Drinks are not cheap on board and being able to get what we liked was great. We are not huge drinkers but it soon adds up, coffee, wine, prosecco, beer etc. Definitely worth it and made it so easy. The waiters were great very courteous and quick we rarely had to wait around very long. I prepaid via my travel agent and it worked out loads cheaper than paying on board or direct with Costa. I paid about £450 for 3 adults and 1 child for a 7 night cruise. Excursions This is the only criticism of the whole cruise. I ordered a trip to Olympia via the website and paid for 4 adults as children price is only up to 13. However the Olympia monument does not charge for children under 18. I queried this with Costa prior to going on the cruise, they couldn’t explain apart from saying it’s their policy. Also 5 days before you cannot cancel or change your excursions. When we arrived on the ship it turned out that we could have just got transfers for 15 euros each paying for our own entry. This was an official transfer by Costa so no worries about missing the ship. Since it is only docked as a tender for about 5 hours we didn’t want to take the chance with a private tour. Also ship tours got priority with the tender boats. We did the tour which was good and the tour guide spoke in English and German. We got to Olympia and she said make sure to only take a paid for ticket if you are not a child! So I queried this with the ship tour desk when we returned and again they didn’t know anything! I know it is petty but I would rather Olympia had the entry fee than Costa or the tour company used. Where has the entrance fee gone? My tip would be unless absolutely desperate to do a particular ship tour wait until you are on board there are deals and cheaper options once boarded. Corfu I had done my homework and knew that there would be a local bus to take us into town or we could walk. Since it was only a 4 hour stop we elected to catch the bus there and look to see the walk was ok. Costa claimed 4K to town centre, not true it is about 2.5 km and a nice easy 25 min walk. The local bus charges 1.7 euros each to the centre. Costa wanted something like 11 euros return! There is a free shuttle bus from the ship to the coach / bus area or you can walk. We tend to walk where ever we can as it is much nicer. Corfu doesn’t need an excursion at all you can wander around the town and enjoy the atmosphere. Since we arrived after 4pm into Corfu all the museums etc. were shutting so if you are interested in the forts then you will be disappointed in the timings. We just wandered bought a couple for nik naks and then stopped for a drink and mixed starter platter. We don’t normally eat off ship but we knew that we would miss dinner (early sitting  ) and thought it made up for it. We had a snack when we got back on in the buffet. Lovely port but could have done with coming earlier and staying a little longer. Katakolon (Olympia) If you don’t want to do an excursion to Olympia then you can just wander around the little port that has shops and bars etc. If I did this itinerary again I wouldn’t bother with the Olympia tour once you have seen it then no need to again. Olympia monument was lovely and very interesting it was good that it was a morning tour as the heat would have spoilt it later. We then had a trip to Olympia town that wasn’t really needed. We wandered around and got back on the bus about an hour later. It is a very busy place and the coaches find it really difficult to stop anywhere. So when you are asked to be there for pick up they really mean it as they have to block the whole road to load up. Mykonos This was our only whole day stop and the seas were too rough to use a tender. So we couldn’t stop, they then sailed around announcing they would let us know where we could stop. It turned into a sea day with an extra half day and overnight a Dubrovnik the next day. Dubrovnik Since we had an overnight stop arriving at midday we decided to walk into Dubrovnik. Now on google maps it said 45 mins, and yes it is a long walk up hill! Really regretted doing it as it was so hot. We walked back as well in the eve but it was downhill and much cooler. The next day we took the local bus at 12 Kuna single ride each person. We bought the tickets at the bus station as it was 3 Kuna cheaper than buying on the bus. Dubrovnik is a great city but on hot days it seems hotter. We explored the town the first afternoon stopping for a drink at the harbour side. Quite expensive in the city for drinks and food. The next day we paid to walk around the walls and it was 150 Kuna per adult and 50 Kuna for under 18s. Well worth doing and is about 1hr to walk. We then explored the city some more and found off a main square a little supermarket. Bought cold drinks and ice creams in there for vastly reduced prices. You are not frowned upon sitting on the steps drinking. There was a little market on and I bought some lovely lavender oils and Rose oil from a stall. Glad we had the extra time as the ship wasn’t originally set to dock until the morning. Venice Well I totally fell in love with Venice, even in the heat of July. It exceeded my expectations in every way. Yes it was crowded in the very touristy spots but a few streets away you could find yourself in an empty square or ally. We bought the Rick Steves guide book and did the walking tours that took us to areas that we never would have found. Well worth buying lots of tips. The food was not as expensive as I had imagined we used trip adviser to find out of the way restaurants and wine bars. We ate where the locals ate and it was fabulous. We added 3 nights onto our cruise to do Venice which allowed us to do the islands of Murano and Burano. Both well worth the boat trip. We bought 3 day travel cards which were needed as our hotel was outside the city. We decided to stay in a 3 star hotel in Mestre a lovely old Italian town. This proved really good as we got off the ship onto the people mover off on the number 2 bus right outside our hotel door. If we had chosen to stay in Venice it would have involved quite a lengthy walk with cases. From Mestre station we took the coach back to Marco Polo airport. Summary Enjoyed our cruise and would not hesitate to take another costa cruise :-) Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Corporations exist to make money for their shareholders and there are two ways they can do it.  Forming a long-term relationship with customers who love the product, remain engaged and delighted and want to return. Or short-term gains ... Read More
Corporations exist to make money for their shareholders and there are two ways they can do it.  Forming a long-term relationship with customers who love the product, remain engaged and delighted and want to return. Or short-term gains through nickel-and-diming, cutting corners and slashing staff. In my opinion, Costa has clearly chosen the latter path to profitability for its parent corporation Carnival. I used to love Costa, with great experiences on both the Atlantica and Mediterranea in the Caribbean. Maybe it's the Mediterranean versus the Caribbean experience from a few years ago, or maybe it's a genuine sea-change at Costa since I was last on one of their ships. I'd looked forward with much excitement to this cruise, but Costa seemed to throw up impediments every step of the way.  And while I encourage you to keep reading, all that I say in here has been previously stated in earlier reviews, which I chose to ignore thinking this wasn't the Costa line I'd known in previous cruises. It's a great ship, with hard-working employees.   But those employees are being asked to carry out short-sighted policies. One example is the lack of tea and coffee outside of breakfast hours.  Travel on any cruise line and tea and coffee are available in at least one location around the clock.  The height of this absurdity came to a head on debarkation day when I wanted a cup of tea at 650am. Even though the tea/coffee station was set up, they weren't budging and wouldn't let people use it until 7am when the buffet line opened. Fancy ice-cream?  Not on Costa. There's a charge for ice-cream/gelato or you can use the machine by the swimming pool, at a cost.  The machine just looked so out of place and not what you want to see on a cruise ship.  (Both Disney and Carnival offer complimentary self-service ice-cream and some beverages around the clock.)  I'm not opposed to a business making money, but it comes at a cost:  I've taken three previous cruises on Costa and am so pissed by the nickel-and-diming that won't be taking another. Costa, by the way, also charges for what's billed a premium pizza. Other cruise lines deserve my business. The main dining room on most cruise ships is a nice place to get breakfast, especially on seadays.  Costa has a new approach:  Get rid of waitstaff and let passengers get their own food from a buffet set up in the main dining room.  Again, it might cut your costs but it's not the cruise experience.   If I wanted a buffet, I'd be at the buffet on deck 9. The number of menu options has been greatly reduced.  Many cruise lines offer a minimum of five entrée options.  Costa is down to about 3. The buffet food is virtually the same every day, with little variety.    The ice and water machines were temperamental and didn't always work. Another cost-cutting move was eliminating the daily menu that most cruise lines post just outside the main dining room. Not on Costa. A member of the wait staff told me it had been eliminated because of "security concerns," which I don't buy because that just doesn't make any sense. Whether that is the true reason, I'm not sure. In its place was a sign advertising paid dining options, which presumably creates less of a security risk. Just wondering why the menu information isn't posted to the MyCosta app that's available for download on the ship, or posted in a location that might be less disruptive. And speaking of "security concerns," no one seemed too worried about the crowds created byfoot traffic caused by the portable beer sales kiosks near the buffet. Also the buffet lines can be long, causing traffic jams at peak times. Also gone are the portable pasta stands which I've enjoyed on previous Costa cruises, presumably a casualty of cost-cutting. Passengers on cruises that I was on seemed to love it! Boarding at Venice was a mess.  Chaos at embarkation.  We were given a boarding card that said number 6 and we'd have to wait for our group to be called.   But when I went inside and asked where the check-in line was for suite passengers, all of a sudden I was given a number 1.  Once in the correct line, boarding was a breeze. If you weren't in a suite, it was a crowded wait. Debarkation was much better and they had us off the ship quite promptly. Rarely saw the cruise director, apart from the shows.   The entertainment was lacking. I was bored on this ship a lot and there is nothing to do, unless you're buying bingo cards or playing in the casino. Port times were limited.  We'd get into a port like Trieste around 7am and be gone by 2pm.  Likewise for Dubrovnik. On the plus side, cabin staff were hard-working and wonderful. Nelson the bartender in the karaoke/piano bar lounge was a genuinely nice guy. I'm looking forward to getting the customer survey and hopefully it will provide an opportunity to provide detailed feedback to Costa about this cruise's shortcomings, with my name attached. I was quite surprised that cruise line officials openly pushed customers to only score a 9 or 10, saying that anything less was viewed as a failure. Costa executives have to think about the way they score. Despite being urged to give high grades, I won't hesitate to give low or barely passing grades where appropriate. I really cannot recommend the Costa Luminosa, or the cruise line, based on this cruise and would certainly not recommend it to anyone who has cruised before and has a reasonable expectation of what a cruise should be. I've taken more than 30 cruises, with 4 of those on Costa and this was easily the worst. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary and decent price. The ship was clean, but the cruise as a whole was a bit disappointing. The ship had a small theater (compared to others) and seemed to be geared more toward bars and making ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary and decent price. The ship was clean, but the cruise as a whole was a bit disappointing. The ship had a small theater (compared to others) and seemed to be geared more toward bars and making money. Information provided throughout the cruise was minimal and lacked details. Our cabin was assigned to us (we were not able to choose) and we ended up in a Samsara Spa Suite on deck 8. However, Costa's boarding ticket made it clear that we would not be able to enjoy the spa benefits that are normally associated with that type of cabin. It didn't take long to figure out why we were assigned to that cabin. It was directly under what becomes the dance floor on deck 9. Stomping and loud music on your ceiling until it is over. Our cabin steward was great, but he is probably to only Costa employee we encountered that I would say that about. Everyone else seemed disconnected from a cruise ship atmosphere. Dining was okay. Buffet needed variation and the portions in the restaurant were pretty small. Dessert choices and variety were also disappointing. Another important detail is that if you do not purchase one of the overpriced Costa beverage packages, you will be drinking WATER the entire cruise. If you are lucky, you will get a cup of coffee with breakfast on the buffet, but coffee with dessert in the dining room was even a challenge. The waiter was a one man show (other cruises we have been on had at least 3 people working the tables in groups). Obviously, an area where Costa is trying to cut costs. It was very obvious that our waiter was not a happy employee most evenings. Entertainment and activities were minimal for a cruise ship. A few shows (there were not many) were okay, and a few were just bad. Again, it seemed that the Costa Luminosa was more interested in the passengers spending money in the bars or casino during the evening. There were only 2 small pools that were usually loaded with kids. There was nothing else for kids to do. There were machines to pay for ping pong balls to play ping pong! The ship needed more pools and an adults only pool area like most other ships have. The plus of this cruise was the itinerary. BUT, we had to be back on the ship by 1:30 pm at most ports and the shore excursion prices were beyond unreasonable. Most of the beach excursions were about 45 Euros for a 20 minute bus ride to the beach. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I have traveled to many places all across the world, but this vacation was my absolute best yet! The Costa Diadema is a huge(really, really Huge) ship with things to do for people in every age. From going to the Daily show att 9.30 PM to ... Read More
I have traveled to many places all across the world, but this vacation was my absolute best yet! The Costa Diadema is a huge(really, really Huge) ship with things to do for people in every age. From going to the Daily show att 9.30 PM to playing bingo, there's something for everybody on this ship! The staff on the costa Diadema is well trained and always put you first. The service is outstanding. We ate dinner in the Fiorentino Restaurant and the food there was amazing! There is a new menu every day where you can choose four different courses. You have the same table and server every night which gives you a "luxurious" feeling. At all the ports you could chose from going on an excursion(which comes with an extra cost) or just take the shuttle bus to the city you where in. We went on several excursions and att all of them there was a professional tour Guide who told us about our different destinations. The cabin was spacious and very clean. You could choose from getting your room cleaned once or twice a day, and during the morning or the evening. Great experience and would love to go again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We chose The Diadema for a week's cruise around the Med to celebrate family birthdays. We were bowled over with the caring attentive staff on board - every single member working so hard to make our holiday a memorable one. This is, by ... Read More
We chose The Diadema for a week's cruise around the Med to celebrate family birthdays. We were bowled over with the caring attentive staff on board - every single member working so hard to make our holiday a memorable one. This is, by far, the best cruise we have been on. All the staff went that extra mile. Everything on board was immaculate, fully equipped for your every need. The food was of the highest standard and was very tasty and very well presented.. The evening shows were top quality and entertaining. Toilet facilities were immaculate and well stocked with hand towels and toilet paper at all times. This was let down by a small minority of passengers who could not be bothered to flush the toilet after use!!! I guess they have a "poop" fairy that just magically comes along to dispose of it! This was by no means the fault of the ship or crew!! It is not their job to flush the toilets! Hope this is not a reflection of how they would behave at home. There is a vast amount of top entertainment around the ship including Clubs and entertainment for children such as Peppa Pig and Princess and Captain for the day. Also a late night disco for teenagers and youngsters to dance the night away. Again, in some of the venues, a small minority of passengers let their children climb all over furniture with total disregard for other passengers around them! Again it left us thinking how they would act in their home environment! I have children and grandchildren and they love to enjoy life to the full but we would make every effort to stop them from climbing all over the tables and chairs - this was somewhat lacking with some passengers. Again - not the fault of ship or crew members who worked so tirelessly to ensure everyone had a great experience on board. Great facilities for passengers with mobility problems and staff were on hand to assist passengers to their cabin rooms etc.. The cabins were immaculate with super comfortable beds and lovely shower rooms, lots of storage space and a fridge. There were plenty of lifts and we never had to wait for any length of time before one arrived. The ship is very colourful and tastefully decorated. Lovely outdoor pool, jacuzzi areas, indoor pool, well equipped gym , 4D Cinema, Casino, Massage, Laser games, Hairdressers and vast amounts of shops to browse around. Everything was computerised which made for very littlle queing at any Hospitality Desks. I would highly recommend this cruise ship. We have definitely had a holiday to remember with many happy memories made along the way. 10/10 - well done Costa Cruises. Having read some of the reviews on here just before we were due to go on our cruise, we were more than a little apprehensive! We need not have worried so much as our fears melted away as soon as we stepped on to the ship. Will definitely return. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
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