22 Galveston to Caribbean - Eastern Royal Caribbean Navigator of the Seas Cruise Reviews

The Good: The ship is most luxuriously decorated. Lots of amazing photo ops. We felt good just being there. Lots to do and see. Evening dining was great. (We were alone and chose 5:30 traditional dining with a table for 6. It ... Read More
The Good: The ship is most luxuriously decorated. Lots of amazing photo ops. We felt good just being there. Lots to do and see. Evening dining was great. (We were alone and chose 5:30 traditional dining with a table for 6. It was a great social success.) The food, service and table appointment equals the best upscale restaurants in Galveston - and is included with the cruise price. RC spends a lot of effort promoting specialty dining, but we were very happy with "our" table. The evening service waitstaff is more than amazing - you will be glad to tip them extra! The Bad: The mattress was worth complaining about- but to no avail. Our bed was as poor as camping in a sleeping bag and air mattress. I have stayed in Motel Six and had better rest. Bad. The Ugly: Galveston port is under construction, and since they receive no tax money, it is pay-as-you-go slow. The planned upgrades will hopefully take care of embark and debark problems. The food/service is so-so in the Windjammer- the free buffet is unimaginative, but it offers the best views of any aboard. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Ship looks great inside with the refurbish. they spent millions of dollars to upgrade this. However the food in the buffet was a 7.99 type of buffet. i have been on many Cruises including royal , i cruise 2-3 times a year. I noticed less ... Read More
Ship looks great inside with the refurbish. they spent millions of dollars to upgrade this. However the food in the buffet was a 7.99 type of buffet. i have been on many Cruises including royal , i cruise 2-3 times a year. I noticed less variety as well as lower quality. (cheap Chinese buffet desserts, no cake pies ect) the main dinning room was ok some nights however overall i found the food lacking. forget a late night option on this ship , the cafe promenade was terrible with the same tiny sandwich with no meat in them everyday and night. all these millions spent and you cant get a hot tasty hot sandwich??? entertainment was good, the cruise director was very boring though. he would be doing paperwork or be on celebrity with a much older crowd. overall i think royal is cutting costs on food so sadly i think this is a deal breaker for me. Adam Goldstien needs to read the reviews and correct this as he is trying for record profits im sure. staff is friendly but clearly overworked and spread thin. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
I went on this cruise with my husband, and 16 year old daughter. Embarkation: Galveston. Sigh. You would think a Texan port would be designed with a priority towards keeping people relatively cool and out of the sun. I am ... Read More
I went on this cruise with my husband, and 16 year old daughter. Embarkation: Galveston. Sigh. You would think a Texan port would be designed with a priority towards keeping people relatively cool and out of the sun. I am a Texan, so obviously, I am used to being hot and uncomfortable outdoors for 8-9 months out of the year. I'm not a whiner. But geez. The port was awful. If I weren't from Texas, I'd have been 100x more disappointed and annoyed. Outside there were lines for luggage drop off requiring people to stand in the sun, sweltering. Inside was barely air conditioned -- which is understandable given the open design -- but couldn't they have huge ceiling fans cranking at all times? My recommendation: Priority boarding is your friend. If possible -- consider a Junior Suite if only to get the priority boarding. If that's not an option -- research and arrive at the best time for the shortest lines. Otherwise, be prepared to stand for hours, sweating and hating life. On the plus side -- the terminal staff was friendly and helpful. Also -- regarding parking -- I didn't realize until the last minute that the standard port authority parking lots that the cruise lines refer you to, are not optimal. First all all, you have to drop your luggage off at the terminal, then drive to the designated parking lot, then wait for a shuttle to take you back to the terminal. The shuttle for these lots will not accept your luggage. And the traffic to get to those port authority lots is awful. Long lines to drop off luggage, etc. Line to get to lot. Wait in line for shuttle. Confusion is common. Also, the lots offer no covered parking. So we reserve a covered space in another lot in advance, online. There are at least three that offer covered, that are close to the terminal. The cost is about the same. You can get a covered space, even inside a parking garage. And the lots have free shuttle service that will take you AND your luggage. When you drive to Galveston, you can bypass the heavily congested roads to the port authority parking lots and avoid spending an hour in traffic just to park. We used LIghthouse covered parking. Great service. We were picked up in the lot, at our truck. And upon return to Galveston, the shuttle was waiting for us right where they said they'd be. No waiting. The shuttle drivers were friendly and helped us with our luggage. The cabin: Cabin 6694 in the aft section was awesome. No complaints really, other than the sofa bed. But regarding the cabin -- this is not specific to the cabin itself but the accommodations in general --- my biggest issue was dirty, old, stained linens. The sheets were clean – no stains. Not exactly high quality – but who expects high thread count on a cruise? But quality aside -- the mattress pads and blanket were…well, shockingly stained and old. They were torn in places. And were covered in random stains of all sizes. Thinking we had bad luck, and just needed a new set of linens – I waited for them to be changed. I didn't complain -- just kind of removed the linens in the morning. (I am not one to complain unless absolutely necessary. I just think, in the long run, to get better service, it's better to endure some things than be labeled "difficult") And guess what? New linens. More brown stains, different sizes, different locations. Clearly, they need to invest in oxyclean, bleach, or new linens. The stains were dark, and appeared to be either blood or vomit – both organic so if laundered promptly – I think they could be removed. So, bottom line -- if you are one to get grossed out guessing the sources of old, dark, stains on bedding – then be warned and spare yourself that OMG moment. Do what I did – try not to pull the sheets back too far to reveal the underside of the comforter, or heaven forbid accidentally pull an entire corner off to reveal dark brown stains on a dingy mattress pad. Just get your Lysol out, and remain blissfully ignorant. Or bring your own linens. Ignorance is easier though. Food: We are not food snobs. Do we like fine dining? Do we appreciate great presentation? Absolutely. But we are reasonable, and didn’t expect stellar dining experiences day after day. And on the whole, we liked the food. It met expectations. Main Dining Room: But as far as the MDR (main dining room) – well, that was a complete disappointment. First off, I don’t mind the dress code. In fact, I wear mostly casual skirts and dresses in the summer anyway. My husband doesn’t have a problem with a dress code either. But, if I do bother to wear something other than shorts, casual skirts, sandals, and tank tops on vacation just to eat --- I expect the food to reward the effort. And the MDR fell far short. Why? Great example is Day 2: We went to the Windjammer buffet for lunch. I had roast beef with mashed potatoes. Very tender, not too fatty. Impressive. Later on, we went to Café Promenade and had a coffee and a lemon tart served on the standard plastic little plate. All great. That evening, for the MDR, I break out the spanx (ugh!), a nice dress, sandals with a heel (I know, I know, how lame that this was a big deal to me, but hey, it’s a vacation) – my husband donned dress pants, business shirt, jacket, tie -- teenager reluctantly wore something other than flip flops and shorts – and we went to the MDR. And guess what? I was served the same roast beef, the same mashed potatoes as I had eaten earlier at the lowly buffet – albeit with a less fancy presentation. The lunch version of this meal was fresher though. And my husband has the same variation of food he had eaten at lunch as well. The kicker? The lemon meringue pie was the same lemon tart from the Promenade served on a red plastic plate, but with a dollop of “meringue” and a wedge of chocolate added for show. My daughter had the cheesecake, which – you guessed it – was available elsewhere, all day long – they didn’t even try to “jazz it up” or make it look different. There are some unique offerings – like lobster on “lobster night”, shrimp cocktail (which was, literally, three sad little shrimp in a fancy glass filled with wilted shredded lettuce) but on the whole, in my opinion, the MDR isn’t worth the effort. Add to it, our waiter was kind of odd. He gave us a long speech (and I mean LONG) about the dangers that lurk in Cozumel, identity theft, muggings, etc. Yes, all true. But we are educated travelers, well informed of the risks. And it was just a weird thing coming from cruise staff -- like he wanted people to stay on the ship rather than explore the ports via RCI excursions. He left my teenager filled with anxiety and talking about staying onboard .Not a discussion I wanted to have at dinner. We did get some wonderful photographs out of the MDR experience. And our table was next to a lovely window. So, I would recommend it for that alone . But one can have a nice family dinner, with nearly the same or more options, in the Windjammer without all the faux formality and weirdness. The food there was always fresh – lots of variety, great salad bar, wonderful French toast, fresh fruit, roasted chicken, burgers, fun dessert station (fresh beignets with whipped cream and fruit). The staff was friendly and helpful. Was it a 5 star dining experience? No. But it was decent and consistent. We also ate in the Mexican restaurant, Sabor. Wonderful food and great service. On the final night, we dined at the Italian place. The service was wonderful. Great risotto and gnocchi. But my chicken was dry and rather luke warm. The bread was stale. My daughter had shrimp ravioli – and she loved it. My husband had some kind of fish with shrimp on top --- and he enjoyed it as well. Overall, good – but nothing to get too excited about. The snacks and Cafe Promenade were decent. Nothing to rave about -- but solid little sandwiches and pastries (which you will see over and over again in the MDR and also, Windjammer). We would have a cup of fresh coffee and a snack in the late afternoon. We also ate at Johnny Rockets. We loved it. The staff was friendly and service was quick. The burgers were great with standard fries and onion rings. I got "cheese fries" which were the standard velveeta covered fries. Nothing spectacular here -- burgers are kind of hard to screw up -- but none the less good quality and a great value. My husband got a shake and it was great. Entertainment: RCI could improve it's entertainment options on board. Or at the very least, they could improve their communication about the entertainment. The Calypso-esque group that plays by the pool was awesome. The lead singer has an amazing voice. We saw one show -- a comedian. Honestly --- IMO it was awful. Just awful. And I wanted to like it. I would have loved to see the ice show, but we missed the notice that you had to get tickets on Sunday, the day of embarkation. I visited guest services to inquire and was told that it was unlikely we'd get seats without said tickets so we gave up. Fitness: The gym was nice. Lots of equipment, space to stretch or work with fitness balls. The locker room had steam and sauna, with showers. (Ok, full disclosure -- on day two, I was going to shower, walked up to one and noted the clear presence of vomit all over the floor. I informed the staff -- and they were nice enough. The entire locker room was closed immediately, the hot tub as well. But -- OMG. Wear flip flops.) And in the center of the gym area was a huge hot tub that was quiet and usually empty. Spa: We got a couples treatment package called "Five steps to Heaven." We booked it while onboard after seeing a flyer with a "special" offering 5 different services, foot massage, back exfoliation, deep tissue massage, facial and scalp massage for $159 per person. It was great -- not perfect but overall fun and relaxing. I was not in "heaven" however. Mainly due to high pressure sales pitches. It is hard to go from the zen of a massage, to a hard core product push. Kind of ruins the entire thing for many I'm sure. So, be prepared for the massive product push at the end. And the people act kind of miffed if you decline. This is not just something that happens with the masseuses -- my daughter had a mani/pedi and we got the same hard core sales pitch for random products. Needless to say -- it's kind of annoying to have to say repeatedly "no thank you I'm not interested in the $85 bottle of massage oil. No thank you but $150 for capsules filled with moisturizing oil is not in my budget." They don't take "no thank you" for an answer. FTR -- my "favorite" product push was the $48 stiff bristle brush that you use to brush your skin to rid yourself of cellulite and toxins. This was the thing they used to "exfoliate" my back (Which, truly, is not an area I need to exfoliate. And when they, without warning, scraped those stiff bristles over my sunburned skin, back and forth, over and over -- holy cow. NOT pleasant). Aside from my obvious skepticism as to the product's utility in these regards -- it was literally a $3 scrub brush you could buy at Walmart. The profit margin alone is appalling to me. Service -- Some of the RCI staff was great. Some were beyond unprofessional. For the most part, the dining/restaurant staff were pleasant and helpful. There were exceptions -- such as the surly man serving at Promenade Cafe. He seemed unhappy every single day. The photo gallery -- the worst. Honestly, it was so bad customer service-wise, it was a bit shocking. Case in point -- I ordered prints and a flash drive. The computer says pick it up tomorrow by 10:30 a.m. So I arrive at 10:45 a.m. the next day, only to be told by a disrespectful young man that "nobody told you 10:30. That's not possible." Uh, ok. why would I lie? Seriously? Then I was told, come back at 3:30. Then at 3:30, I was told "10:30". Then at 10:30 p.m. -- they don't have the prints, but they have the flash drive. So, come back in the morning and the entire package will be ready. I come back the next morning (disembarkation day), and they have lost or misplaced the flash drive, and the prints are nowhere to be found. Deep, heavy sigh. I stand around for 30 minutes b/c they tell me they can make a new flash drive. I stand there forever it seems, only to have them come out and say "the system is down" and they will email me a link to my photos. In a week. A week has come and gone -- no photos via email. Keep in mind we paid over $200 and got nothing. So, I call RCI, who tells me they are not responsible for the photo "vendor" (I'm not even going to discuss the absurdity of that pitch both legally and logically when RCI received the money for said photos as documented on my invoice). They gave me a phone number to call the photo vendor, who is only open monday through friday 8-5. Sigh. Other service issues: After reviewing our account statement -- I noted several double charges. E.g., at the bar, we had one order of drinks for $37. But on the invoice, the charge was entered twice, plus two other identical charges. We bought two drinks for $37. But were charged 4 times totalling over $100. Same thing with the spa -- there was one legit $68 charge. It was entered twice, and then an additional mystery $38 charge was added to it. These charges were readily refunded. Yes, mistakes happen. But when the RCI customer service rep said "we will talk to these employees. this is not supposed to happen" I kind of got the impression that it was a regular occurrence. If so, not cool. So check that invoice! :) Excursions: I booked all our excursions privately, ( I found that even including cab fare -- it was more economical) so I can't speak toward any RCI sponsored activities. In Cozumel, we took a cab to Mr. Sanchos. Awesome place. In Cayman, we went to the Westin. And in Jamaica -- we went to the HIlton Rose Hall. Love both places. I got up early and got a tender ticket for our arrival in Cayman. So, we were able to board the tender in group 9, almost right after the RCI excursions. We waited about 15 minutes, which to me, wasn't much of a delay . So, not getting on the tender first wasn't that big a deal for us. Overall, we are pleased with our trip. But I admit -- the three days of sailing juxtaposed to the excitement of the ports was kind of a let down. If you are not a big drinker, and are active -- i.e., don't like to sit for hours in the pool, hot tub, on a chaise reading -- a more port heavy cruise may be a better choice. Also -- even if you are not a big drinker, but think you and your spouse/partner might enjoy one or two drinks at the pool or wherever --- I think you should consider paying a bit more for a drink package. The cost of the drinks is ridiculous. E.g., I had a weak, barely alcoholic pina colada that cost about $10 at the pool. A mojito and appletini at the Schooner bar cost us --- kid you not -- $37.76 -- and that's NOT with an extra tip. Two drinks for nearly $40? And FTR -- the appletini was nasty. Insult meet injury. ;) My point is: I saw lots of people walking around on disembarkation day with long faces holding their statements. I heard one woman moan "why didn't we get the beverage package!" Even for a occasional drinker -- one or two here or there for fun can add up. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
This was my second cruise on Royal carribean with my family. From the first day we arrived, I felt like they have lost their royal treatment. The food was disgusting. the bread was hard, the smell of the sapphire restaurant was horrible, ... Read More
This was my second cruise on Royal carribean with my family. From the first day we arrived, I felt like they have lost their royal treatment. The food was disgusting. the bread was hard, the smell of the sapphire restaurant was horrible, and the cook couldn't prepare soft scrambled eggs. The pool area was dirty all the time, the room a/c was not cooling well at all. And some of the staff workers were rude, they badly in need of a class in customer service. But on the other hand, they were very informational on what's going on. I'm willing to give it another try. I think they just over booked this cruise and was not able to accommodate everyone to give you that outstanding service that they are known for. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
Bad Service, Terrible Accommodations, and Poor Quality Food. 3rd time cruising with RC. 30 years old traveling with Fiance. Stayed in a balcony suite. Beverage Package not worth it, doesn't include everything like it says. ... Read More
Bad Service, Terrible Accommodations, and Poor Quality Food. 3rd time cruising with RC. 30 years old traveling with Fiance. Stayed in a balcony suite. Beverage Package not worth it, doesn't include everything like it says. Rude bartenders that take FOREVER to serve a drink. And don't forget to include the tax and automatic gratuity which makes it about $30 more than advertised per day. Stains in bed sheets every night (yellow and purple - attendant said it was the detergent but that's a bit iffy). Water only had scalding hot temp. Mini Fridge didn't work. Room service takes 2+ hours to receive food. No towel animals anymore. No healthy food options. I had to specifically ask for vegetables at dinner and even then they came fully saturated in butter. Halfway through the cruise, I didn't even want tacos in Mexico because my body was just craving greens. Flo-Rider was best part of cruise and even that had minimal operation times and every little kid wanted to be on it so the line was about an hour for a one-two minute ride. We hated it. We felt like we were a burden to the staff. I guess we just aren't cruisers. It was fun when we were 14 but now that we are 30, we realize how terrible cruises actually are. We got off the boat in Belize and had a much better time as soon as we got away from port. Overall, we wasted about 5 grand on a balcony suite that we ended up only using for 4 days. I'll never go on a RC Cruise again. Ever. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
Cruise itself was nice...somewhat what I had expected. We met the transfer at the Houston airport for the shuttle bus down to Galveston & embarkation. This process went real smoothly & we were on our way in no time. The ride was ... Read More
Cruise itself was nice...somewhat what I had expected. We met the transfer at the Houston airport for the shuttle bus down to Galveston & embarkation. This process went real smoothly & we were on our way in no time. The ride was a little over an hour I believe. The process of getting your bags again out of the under carriage area is a bit of a mess but it worked out in the end. We hailed a porter & were underway quickly with our 5 ladies & their luggage. We had arranged for a wheelchair assist for my elderly sister but this was not arranged correctly by our travel agent so we did wait awhile to accomplish this. Once all in our party was ready a crew member pushed the wheelchair on board along with the rest of us. He assisted all the way to the dining area. He was kind & gracious & said we should look for him on the cruise later in the pool bar! Not sure if any of the other girls saw him later or not. The food in the Windjammer restaurant (buffet style) is plentiful but not that tasty. Most food were bland in taste, lacking some seasoning. The fruit was fresh, although the pastries seemed dry. We dined in the dining room three different nights ( one formal) & also had breakfast one morning (sitting down at a table in the dining room) before leaving the ship for the day to go in port. The service was great in the dining room although the staff could learn to curtail their chit-chat if they see that the group is speaking amongst themselves at the table. The food in the dining room was again plentiful but again I would say lacking flavor. It was almost like hospital food but served very beautifully & in courses. The formal night was lobster & rock shrimp & both were tasty. The chicken marsala was probably the most memorable of all the entries tried. The desserts in the dining room & also in the Café Promenade were beautiful in appearance but not notable in flavor. The most delicious item I ate for dessert were the oatmeal raisin cookies in the Café Promenade. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
Background: My wife and I chose this cruise for two reasons, we were celebrating our 10th year anniversary and the ship departed in our home town of Houston. Since this was our first long vacation in a few years and we wanted to splurge ... Read More
Background: My wife and I chose this cruise for two reasons, we were celebrating our 10th year anniversary and the ship departed in our home town of Houston. Since this was our first long vacation in a few years and we wanted to splurge without having the kids, we chose to travel in a grand suite. Having been on other cruise lines from Galveston we wanted try Royal for the first time. Being in our early 30’s we also wanted something less appealing than a party ship but also to avoid the high class on upscale cruise ship and older crowds. Trip: The trip overall was wonderful and the staff very friendly with little to no complaints. The ship is very clean and has a fresh appearance given the recent dry dock and refurbishment a year ago. Getting on and off the ship was quick and painless taking less than 30 minutes in both cases. Granted as suite guest you do have separate lines and disembark times so I cannot confirm if this is the ‘norm’ out of Galveston. Room: Our room number was 1579, a Grand Suite port side deck 10 which included use of the Concierge Club and other amenities. The room was large and felt like a decent hotel room rather than a small cruise ship room. If your budget allows we highly recommend cruising in a suite, it’s well worth the perks and service amenities. The only complaint with regards to our room was towel animals only appeared every other night rather than nightly. Royal does offer Wi-Fi in all rooms however the service is extremely slow. Facebook, email, and small web traffic works fine however Apple Facetime or Skype video calls would not work. We were able to use Skype audio only calls successfully. Prices for the internet varied, we purchased unlimited for the duration of the cruise for $189 – will worth it for calling back home nightly and posting pictures on Facebook. Concierge Club: Our Concierge Nadaja and her staff within the club were fantastic and meet every need on this trip. If we could book cruises based on her being our concierge, we would! As a suite guest we also had a bridge tour, galley tour, reserved seating at the pool, theater / ice shows, and dinner at the Captain’s Table one evening. Other Things: As expected things on the ship are expensive. Cruise pictures averaged $25 each (or through other high priced packages), drinks of the day averaged $10 each, bottle water was $3 each, ect. We had one Royal Replenish package for $20 per day which included everything (such as all Starbucks drinks, bottle water, OJ, ect.) but no alcohol drinks. This worked well considering we had the free open bar in the Concierge club when we wanted a drink. Dinning Onboard: Chops: We were not impressed with Chops having been to other steak restaurants on land. Expected more of a five star treatment though our waiter was less than attentive most of the evening. This restaurant was not packed most nights given the cost of dining and the food was not impressive. If you’re looking for a thicker steak compared to the main dining room this is the place, just don’t expect the quality would see from a local steak house. Sabor Mexican: This by far was our favorite restaurant given how different the food is presented and prepared. The food and staff were fanatic, just wish we could find something similar back home. Highly recommend. Giovanni's: This restaurant is featured as an Italian restaurant but felt nothing more than a general restaurant serving food from the main dinning room. Some general basic Italian dishes expected would have been language or spaghetti neither of which were listed on the menu. Would not recommend eating here based on the menu options. Jonny Rockets Looking for a good burger… this is a great place to eat. Our complaints with this restaurant was the hours open (most days didn’t open until 2PM) and the loud music which made it hard to talk across the table. Windjammer: Food here is average (to say the least). If you want a quick meal such as breakfast on port days, this place it ‘OK’. Main Dining Room: For the dining room we arranged for My Time Dinning which was the best decision we made during our advance booking. Treated more as a first come, first served restaurant we never waited more than five minutes for a table. Food was average, nothing to write home about. Read Less
Sail Date February 2015
Our overall experience was good, but the cruise was a bit underwhelming. Getting from the airport in Houston to the cruise terminal takes about 1.5 hours and is very expensive ($150-200 one way). This added a lot to our budget ... Read More
Our overall experience was good, but the cruise was a bit underwhelming. Getting from the airport in Houston to the cruise terminal takes about 1.5 hours and is very expensive ($150-200 one way). This added a lot to our budget unexpectedly. There were long line ups at embarkation even though the cruise line tried to stagger visitor arrival. We had a nice aft balcony cabin (we booked a guarantee room), and a great cabin steward. We had spectacular service in the main dining room. Food overall was good, but we found food at the Windjammer buffet was routine. Overall service was slow there and tables not cleared quickly enough and it closed from 3-5 pm. Coke cards were pretty pricey at $150. The food at the Chophouse and Giovanni's was very good, worth the price. The design of the ship with the central "street" was good for getting everyone together. Music was good with live bands playing somewhere all night. Entertainment was some of the best we have seen, with high quality production shows, a parade, a 70's dance night, an ice spectacular on the skating rink, late-night comedians and The Quest, a hysterical audience participation show you won't believe. The ship has a free Flowrider, rock wall and mini-putt. The ship was clean and never felt crowded. There were always deck chairs available and the adults-only pool area was tranquil and calm. Disembarkation went smoothly as did the transfer back to the airport. In summary, it was a good cruise, but we felt that the cruise line was cutting back a bit (limited dining hours, no toilettries, etc). Read Less
Sail Date January 2015
RCCL is cutting corners everywhere they can. I guess it is so they can pay for their new mega ships. The entertainment was not up to par compared to other of the 19 cruises we have been on. The food service was not as great as in the past ... Read More
RCCL is cutting corners everywhere they can. I guess it is so they can pay for their new mega ships. The entertainment was not up to par compared to other of the 19 cruises we have been on. The food service was not as great as in the past and the food temperature varied. We had to send several dishes back for reheating. One of the major disappointments was the elimination of the guest talent show. Sometimes that is the best entertainment on the cruise.   Read Less
Sail Date December 2014
We love Royal Caribbean and cruised on Navigator of the Seas on February 23rd after 4 weeks out of drydock. After a few minor problems and a few comments on the comment card, we decided to give Navigator of the Seas another try and booked ... Read More
We love Royal Caribbean and cruised on Navigator of the Seas on February 23rd after 4 weeks out of drydock. After a few minor problems and a few comments on the comment card, we decided to give Navigator of the Seas another try and booked onboard for turkey week. To us, a vacation is a cruise vacation! Had a beautiful day leaving our home in Cypress Texas for the 1 hour and 15 minute drive to Galveston. We decided that Royal has a reason for asking you to come at a certain check-in time so we decided instead of getting there real early we would abide by our 11:45 AM check-in. In the past, we have always arrived at 10 AM. The first problem we had was 1-45 South to Galveston construction closure. We were not the only ones in this major traffic jam, saw many shuttles, busses, and cars with luggage all in the same bumper to bumper traffic. Couldn't wait to get there. Once past Nasa Road 1, we were anxious to get there. Got to the pier, unloaded luggage, hubby went to parking lot, came back quick, and we immediately went inside. We arrived about 12:20 and were on the ship when the rooms were cleared. Really smooth compared to back in February. We were in room 9610 balcony. The one we picked back at Next Cruise in February so we knew what our room looked liked. One perk about booking on board, find the cabin you want and reserve it. Ronald Holt was our steward. Met us, greeted us in the hall, opened our door, we had ice twice a day, and reminded us about our excursion the night before. Room was always clean. Greatest steward ever. We also WOW ed him. Changes that we found 100% better than February 2014......(1) Bartenders walked around the pool more and took your order. No need to have to go to the Sky Bar all the time. Of course the Skybar was a great hangout. Bartenders there were great and after 1st day they knew your name . (2) Food in the diningroom was fantastic and hot. Recommendations given by our Royal Hostess were fantastic. Big improvement from February. Bar staff took our orders so we always had wine. We had late seating and we always out of diningroom by 9:45 PM. We also gave our waitstaff extra money on the last night because she was so sweet, corgial, and just the best ever. Back in February I did not care for the green sauce on the lobster so this time they brought me the lobster without it. As a matter of fact they gave me 3. All of the food in the diningroom was good and the beef tenderloin and the fish was very appetizing. We also did the specialty restaurants on this cruise. We did Chops in February and did not do it this time. We did Sabor, and the guacamole was so good. Wished we had more. The food was really good. Was so full, I dozed off during the comedy show. We also went to Izumi. Remember that Izumi is a la carte. We enjoyed picking many different dishes to share. Be sure to get the tenderloin that you cook on the hot rock. We also went to Giovanti's table the last night. It was very good as well. We are breakfast at the Windjammer every morning and we were happy with selection. Had our Bloody Mary (Windjammer Bar) they make the best, and got my Starbucks with my beverage package. Just sat by the window, relaxed, and waited for our friends to touchbase. We did eat at the diningroom during breakfast one morning. I found it easier just to go to the Windjammer because you were not rushed to order or to get up and leave. We did eat at diningroom twice during lunch and it was really good. Highly suggest it. Salad bar really good. Last cruise we did Johnny Rockets but this cruise for some reason did not get there. But it sure is nice to just get a hamburger and fries and a milkshake. As for the Promendade café, yes they could do a little makeover in the sandwiches and pizza department. But I had no problem after coming back from excursion and getting a couple pieces of pizza or a sandwich since dinner was at 8:30. Ice Cream on deck also took care of the sweet tooth. Entertainment was good. Our crowd really enjoyed it especially "Quest". Now I know what to bring on next cruise to be able to help participate in this scavenger hunt. Love and Marriage was good also but I think the old married couple already decided they were going to be on the show and had written down there answers. Their answers were exact but it was fun. Ice Skating show was great and we loved the bands. Only problem is when you have late seating you miss some of the dancing. Missed Bubba Feathers dancing most of the time. They really need to put the dancing in the Cosmo Lounge on 14. More room to dance. Baleros is kinda small especially for Bubba. We loved the Rock and Roll Trivia, 80's trivia, in the Schoover Bar but I kinda wished it was in the am because eating dinner or being somewhere had us trying to get there. The activity cruise staff made it fun and enjoyable. Casino is not part of our cruise but we heard if you played the first night you had a good chance of winning so after dinner the first night I put a dollar in Wheel of Fortune slot and won $600.00. That was enough for me. Cashed in and left. Plus it did start getting smoky. Heard reviews about disco etc. There is plenty of dancing, country, rock, dancing with headphones on, etc. Something for everyone. We had a beautiful week on the cruise. Spent time up on top deck watching all of the kids on FloRider, and rock wall. Played putt putt golf, watched the dodge ball and enjoyed our alcohol beverages. Got some great sunshine. As for shopping on board, yes they have the t-shirts for $10.00 on the last day. I like picking up a few and also my clip magnets and emory boards, I do not do the jewelry. Did that a couple cruises ago. We also stopped buying the alcohol on board like on previous cruises. Kinda crazy with all of the people picking up those souveners but you're on vacation. Everyone needs to be flexible. And yes there is only 1 person or 2 in gift shop but be patient and just talk to your fellow passengers. I found out one of them in line lived in the same subdivision. We decided not to take our luggage off and let Royal do it. We had a 9:30 departure time. It was 9:45 when he headed down to customs. I got in line, hubby found luggage no problem. Got in line with me and together we went through customs. Took 45 minutes if that long. No problems. We were on shuttle bus and in our car 10:45. Headed home 45 North and saw the traffic jam again on the other side. What a bummer. Had a great trip and back to reality. Cruising is the best. Nothing is 100%. Yes there might be a few things you do not like but brush it off. We booked again while on board. Best deal ever. Sticking with Royal Caribbean. Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
The NOS was renovated this year, and the ship is beautiful. The entertainment was quite good. Plenty of live music for listening and dancing. Production shows in the theater were top notch. The headliner shows were entertaining. And the ... Read More
The NOS was renovated this year, and the ship is beautiful. The entertainment was quite good. Plenty of live music for listening and dancing. Production shows in the theater were top notch. The headliner shows were entertaining. And the Ice Skating Show was spectacular. Service in the main dining room was very good and the food was good enough. Food in the Windjammer was good. We ate at the "Chops Grill" and the food and service there were excellent. All of the ship's crew we came in contact with were very helpful and friendly, and the ship was kept clean and orderly. In Cozumel, we spent the day at the El Cid resort (just a couple hundred feet outside the port entrance). El Cid has two different day passes: At $20 US you have access to the beach, pool and a $12 food & drink credit. At $48 US you have unlimited drinks & food (but not breakfast) and pool, beach and snorkel equipment. The "beach" is man-made (but okay) with a retaining wall holding imported sand. The main view from the beach was the NOS. Cayman required tenders to port; we waited until the masses had been transported to shore, checked out George Town, and returned to the ship. Falmouth, Jamaica was not a tourist attraction until a few years ago when Royal Caribbean needed a port in Jamaica for the Oasis. So they reached an agreement to build a "tourist village" at the port to be built for the Oasis. The village is nice enough with all the tourist shops you might expect plus an area for local craft sellers. There wasn't/isn't much of interest for tourists in the city of Falmouth, though it is located as well as Montego Bay as far as traveling to excursion locations. We took the ship's excursion to Dunn's River Falls and climbed the falls. Nice excursion. All in all, a very nice cruise. Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
We have gone on 21 cruises on 3 different cruise lines, so we are somewhat experienced cruisers. We thoroughly enjoyed the Navigator...she looks good after her refurbishing. Dining: The main dining room staff was wonderful...since we ... Read More
We have gone on 21 cruises on 3 different cruise lines, so we are somewhat experienced cruisers. We thoroughly enjoyed the Navigator...she looks good after her refurbishing. Dining: The main dining room staff was wonderful...since we were B2B they let us pick our table for the following week. We were able to get a "table for 2" each week which is a rarity. The food was above average with very attentive service. We did several nights of specialty restaurants. Sabor was amazing...although very quiet since the word hasn't gotten out yet. LOVED the guacamole...(could have made a meal of just that). Chops was terrible...steak was inedible. Giovanni's was excellent...filet was flavorful and extremely tender...one of the best I have ever had. I do, however, miss Portofino...it is one of the specialty restaurants we go to at least 3 times on any given cruise. Love the bread and dipping oils. Maybe they could combine some of the best from Giovann's & Portofino? We did the Mystery Dinner in Giovanni's--loved both food and entertainment. Only drawback on these size ships is there is absolutely nowhere to sit when it is raining...the solariums are all open. Wish there was some way they could retrofit these class ships with a moveable canopy. I only say this because the second week had 4 out of 7 days of rain and all those people who had only that week were out of luck for much poolside enjoyment or lounging. The shows were all excellent. Our only glitches on entire 2 weeks was when we tried to change (prepaid) dinner reservations from Chops to Giovanni's. RCCL offers a preboarding package where you get a percentage off if you book & pay for 3 dinner reservations in their specialty restaurants. They charged us for the new reservation and then it took 4 trips to the desk to get a refund of $70 for Chops. They kept telling us that the manager of Chops had to do the actual refund, so I guess he was not in any hurry to do so. We new that the last day of the cruise the lines at the desk would be mega-long so we wanted to get this corrected early...HA! HA! We did end up getting the refund but it should not have taken 4 trips. Diamond lounge staff were excellent...just hard to get a seat a rush hour! Most Diamond (+) guests do not take advantage of the 3 drink availability at various other venues on the ship, so the lounge is almost always overcrowded. We did go to another venue on two occasions to get a pre-dinner drink and were made to feel uncomfortable by the servers...perhaps they don't get the guaranteed, included tip? The "top-tier" event consisted of drinks and the captain pushing the newest ship...The Quantum...we all heard MANY times how excited he was to be the new captain of the newest ship. The event was scheduled during one of the shows so we arrived late and had a difficult time getting anyone to serve us ONE drink...no food...RCCL needs to let their repeat cruisers know how valuable they are...we are the ones who are filling your cabins on all your ships...not just the newest & shiniest! I must, however, tip my hat to Mr. Lindsay...he went out of his way to speak to us every time we saw him..especially as we entered the top-tier event...now, HE made us feel important! (I believe he said he was going to be on the Vision in a GS on our next cruise in March) We look forward to speaking to him again. All in all, this was one of our most enjoyable cruises! We are looking forward to our next three cruises booked on RCCL! Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Getting around Texas after flying into IAH is inconvenient, no doubt about it. Because the week that we were traveling bordered on a holiday, we were unable to get a one-way car rental from Enterprise in Houston to Galveston - in either ... Read More
Getting around Texas after flying into IAH is inconvenient, no doubt about it. Because the week that we were traveling bordered on a holiday, we were unable to get a one-way car rental from Enterprise in Houston to Galveston - in either direction. They say that it is up to the issuing agency whether they will allow one-way at an additional fee or not. TIP: Call multiple locations and ask their policy, because it can vary. In our case, it was almost cheaper to rent a car at the airport and pay for the car and parking at the port for the whole duration of the cruise, rather than using shuttle services. Ultimately, because we were a group of 8, we rented a car for our time in Houston, then returned it to the airport and used Super Shuttle to get back and forth from/to Bush Continental Airport, about 1 hr 45 min. The port was crazy, but not terrible. Lines outside were not well controlled. Porters were bypassing the people waiting patiently in line to drop off luggage in favor of getting bags from people at their cars - because the people at the cars were tipping better. Tip: get it taken at curb if possible, wave $$ wherever you are. Also, when they send you luggage tags to print as part of your welcome packet - they mean it! If you don't print and attach them before you get to port, you have to wait in an additional line just to get the tags, before you can get in line for luggage, before you can get in line to enter the terminal, before you can get in line for security screening, before you can get in line to check in for the cruise. Also, in our family's case, their Platinum status didn't print on their boarding pass- which meant that they were not allowed to use the express line for premium members. Make sure you have proof of your membership status or the man controlling lines will treat you like a commoner. The ship itself is an interesting mix of old and new. Our last cruise was on the Freedom of the Seas. After Navigator had a face lift this year, we were curious as to what to expect. The ship is comparable in the sense that it has ice skating, FlowRider, Adventure Ocean, the Promenade, rock climbing. Navigator does not have the Dreamworks Experience for kids. On Navigator, the pool area lacks the large kid-friendly shallow pools and the Promenade is not as large as on Freedom. In fact, the Promenade was beautiful, but kind of a bottleneck for the ship, especially with the super large Christmas tree in it. There are only a few shops, so don't plan on doing much shopping on board unless you want to purchase alcohol, perfume, or watches. There is a Card Room & Library combo on the 7th level, it was frequently full. There is no movie theater. The main theater for show nights seemed of standard size. The public restroom situation was less than perfect. Considering that the Windjammer buffet and the pool have to share a bathroom, it is shocking that the bathroom only has 4 stalls. And with regards to the Windjammer, it is only open until 9pm. That was a huge disappointment for those of us with Main Dining at 5:30 and the Show at 8:30 - we'd get out at 9:15pm and our only snack option was sandwiches, pastries, or a slice of cold pizza in the Cafe on the Promenade - a selection that didn't change. Ever. In Roataon, Honduras, we docked at the port. The port is behind a gate with security controlling who gets in and out. We did not see a line of private taxis waiting to take people around like we usually do see at ports, so I'm not sure what is offered. Because rain was in the forecast and we assumed all beach time was out, we used a ship excursion to take us to Gumbalimba Park. There, we got a tour of the property, learned a little history, held spider monkeys and parrots, and got rained on really really hard. The property had a small beach and a large pool that we were not prepared to use, but would have been fun for the kids after the tour was over. Lockers cost $3 and there were no covered areas in the animal area. On the rope bridge we saw turtles when we looked down and flying Macaws when we looked up. They also had zip lining, which we didn't do. (Also on Roaton was a park or beach called Turtle Bay that looked really nice.) The guide that jumped into the van with us was our tour guide for the whole day. TIP: be prepared for rain and sun, if you get one you're likely to also get the other. In Belize City, Belize, we hired a company called EcoTours to take us to a beach and snorkeling. We didn't realize it was 30 minutes by boat. Went to tiny Goff Caye where the guides snorkeled off the boat, but water was murky. Cuty, tiny private island - the areas is full of them. Kids got to catch hermit crabs and live brittle stars. Toilets were gross. Rum punch was good but unsure how it was made. They poured it from a Tropicana bottle, but.... In Cozumel, this was the only port that searched our bags on the way in and took away all food and fruit. We hired a taxi for $32 each way to take the eight of us to Playa Mia. Entrance fee was $30 for adults, close to the same for kids to get in. For more $ you can get all you can eat buffet and all you can drink as well. The resort has great beaches and an inflatable jungle gym in the water. On land, there is a water play area, pools, and a water slide. Back at the ocean, you can check out kayaks, water boats, and sail boats for no additional fee (but note that all are two person only. The sailboat holds three, but that third is the resort employee unless you know how to sail). Jet skis were available for an additional fee. From the port to to the beaches there is just one road that runs along the coast (but has bushes on both sides) and we passed San Francisco Beach, Carlos & Charlie's Beach, and Mr Sanchez's beach along the way. Those would have been good to check out too. Bags were screened before we could get back on ship in a giant screening room and all shells, slingshots, and food was confiscated or tossed. Alcohol was confiscated to be returned on the day you get off the ship. TIP: If you have a wooden slingshot to keep or some other trinket that may get confiscated: put it in your pocket. Disembarking was rough the way we did it. Because we had a late flight, we wanted to stay on the ship. Breakfast was only served until 8:30am then we had to wait in a theater, then a half hour line to find our luggage, then almost an hour for customs, before we were out of the port building. Next time, we will keep our luggage with us and do early walk off/self-service no matter what. Flying out on Alaska Airlines was also rough. Because our flight wasn't until 5:40pm, and Alaska only has about 2 flights a day leaving from Houston, they closed the luggage counter until 2:30pm! Even though we arrived before 1pm at the airport, we had to stay in the bag drop area until we could get in line at 2:30pm to deposit our bags. We couldn't enter the main part airport because we couldn't go through security with our luggage. Unsure if there is any way to avoid this or know about this in the future - but be warned!   Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Synopsis: Sailing on the Navigator was a relaxing and memorable experience. The main ingredient that made it so great was the crew. Their professionalism and courtesy was awesome! Day 1: Stayed overnight in Galveston and arrived at the ... Read More
Synopsis: Sailing on the Navigator was a relaxing and memorable experience. The main ingredient that made it so great was the crew. Their professionalism and courtesy was awesome! Day 1: Stayed overnight in Galveston and arrived at the cruise terminal prior to suite boarding at 11:30. Once the time began, an orderly procession through the terminal onto the ship, I would say less than 1 hour. I was a little warm/humid, but that's the Houston/Galveston area for you too. Luggage arrived on time to cabin, did the drill and enjoyed dinner in the main dinning room. Doston our waiter was great, and made a great first impression on my 3 year old daughter. Days 2 and 3: Sailing days. Daughter participated in Adventure Ocean both mornings, and really enjoyed it. Lunch in the Windjammer both afternoons. The food was very good, if you're expecting the same luxury as the main dinning room, you'll be disappointed. None of the food, however, was cold or was stale as I've seen in other reviews. Wife and I did some putt-putt and trivia, which were both fun. Long naps also taken too. Dinner in the main dinning room on Day 2 and at Giovanni's Table on Day 3. I wanted to get Chop's but they filled up fast, so pre-book or book on Day 1 if you want to go for dinner. Service, food selection and food itself was awesome at Giovanni's. Day 4: Port day in Roatan. Didn't have any excursions booked so did a little shopping in the area near the port. Typically shopping area. Did some swimming in the pool that afternoon and other lounging around the ship/cabin. Day 5: Port day in Belize. Had to tender to get to this port. Instructions for tender tickets given day before and very clear, and no problems with the tender. Weather was nice and directed easily to the Calypso Train tour. At the start of the train, the guide gave us some basic information on Belize and Belize City before we set out, as well as a presentation on where we would be going. Very interesting to see the two sides of the city (poor/rich). As we passed by, people on the street would smile or wave if you made eye contact (or vendors would try to sell you a coconut full of rum!). Didn't do any shopping but they had some places near the tender location. Special treat that night, as we had been invited to eat at the captain's table. Great group of fellow crusiers there and a fantastic meal and wine service. Very memorable. Day 6: Port day in Cozumel. Early day for our excursion, but no real issues getting off the ship (the elevators were not very cooperative). Got to the excursion point a little early, so did some window shopping. Since Cozumel has been doing the cruise port business for some time, there are not too many opportunities for bargaining, but more reassurance that the goods are decent quality. Once the excursion was ready to go, we walked a short distance to the sub. Once on board, the guide gave us some introductory remarks and off we went. A good excursion all in all. Day 7: At sea. Enjoyed the pool in the morning and then tried Johnny Rockets for lunch. I had heard people rave about the burgers and shakes, so I really wanted to try it. There was quite a line there when it opened at 11:30, so that further bolstered my expectations. Unfortunately, it fell a little below my expectations. The burgers and shakes were good, but not different from a good local establishment. Wasn't too bad for the price. Nice goodbye dinner in the dinning room. Disembarkation: Breakfast at the windjammer, our number was called. Elevators the only real issue, but the concierge helped out. Once we were in the process, we went from ship to car in 1 hour. Lines for customs moved the whole time. No complaints. All during the trip, whether getting on the ship, dinning, activities, or excursions, the crew was really the best. Everyone went out of their way to make sure your needs were met and our daughter got called "Princess" so many times, so might think she is royalty! Questions were answered promptly, and officers could be seen going about the ship at all time. Our room attendant Maggie was great, kept the room very clean and made up the sofa be every night for my daughter. Tip of the hat to the crew! We had so much fun we booked another, sadly it won't be until Feb 2016! Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
We have sailed on the Navigator several times in the past, usually from Cape Liberty. We are diamond plus members, so are well used to RCCL. Every time we board a ship, the first thing we do is go to the library. We were shocked, no ... Read More
We have sailed on the Navigator several times in the past, usually from Cape Liberty. We are diamond plus members, so are well used to RCCL. Every time we board a ship, the first thing we do is go to the library. We were shocked, no SHOCKED to find that the library only had approximately 30 books, spread thinly on it's many shelves. This was not because people had taken them, as the glass doors were locked! There were approximately 10 swap shop books which previous passengers had left, which went within minutes of our arriving (taken by other people). The situation did not improve throughout the cruise and each time we went past the library, people were there trying to find something, anything to read. There were scores of boxed games of Backgammon however, together with a few packs of cards and a couple of Scrabble board games. Nothing else The games room on the Navigator used to be on deck 14 in the Viking Lounge, but this has now been made into an Asian restaurant (another money making venture). We usually go to Portofino's each cruise, but this is no longer there and the room is now called Giovani's. We were told by the maître de that it was just a good, so we went. Don't believe it. The food is served in the middle of the table to be shared by everyone, which is by no means fine dining, also the food wasn't that good. On one night of the cruise there wasn't even a show. This is often the case when a ship stays overnight in port, but this didn't happen on this cruise. There was only one ice show, which was repeated on several days, again cut backs. The ports of call, Roatan, Belize and Cozomel are probably the cheapest ports of call in the Caribbean, and to be honest not very nice. The food in the main dining room (we were on freetime) isn't as good as it used to be, but the waiters still try to make it a pleasant occasion. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
Embarkation day My sister dropped us off at the terminal at 10 am. There were two lines. I got in the wrong line which was priority. The regular line is the far left. At 10:30 they opened the door and we started in. We were through ... Read More
Embarkation day My sister dropped us off at the terminal at 10 am. There were two lines. I got in the wrong line which was priority. The regular line is the far left. At 10:30 they opened the door and we started in. We were through security in about 15 mins. We went on into the terminal and found our line (Gold). We were second in line and were through and seated in about 5 mins. At 11:10 they called the ship was ready and we were on the ship eating lunch by 11:20. Quickest I’ve ever been on the ship. It pays to go early. The ship Navigator had been through an overhaul so I was expecting a lot. It honestly didn’t look any different than some of the older ships I had been on. It was very nice though. I love the open promenade of RC ships. It was so open and roomy. I never felt crowded. One thing I must point out is, they had changed all the seating on the ship to chairs with arms. This was an issue for large people! The dining room had arm chairs and they were very snug if you were a large person. They do have some without arms but it was rather embarrassing for you to have to ask for one. The chairs in the Windjammer buffet were the same only smaller. At the entrance to the Windjammer, there is a little bar and the tables there didn’t have arms so a lot of larger people were setting in those to eat. The theater chairs have all been replaced. They used to have long benches with tables for your drinks. Now they are theater chairs, tight theater chairs. And no place for your drink. They had some little holder things connected to your seat but not all of the drinks would fit into that. I saw a lot of larger people leave the show because they couldn’t fit in the chairs. I’m not really sure the reasons for all the snug chairs but just letting you know ahead of time if this is an issue with you. Guess they want us to go on diets and not eat so much while we are on board. Cabin We stayed in cabin #6309. A promenade inside room. The room was so small! It worked out ok for the price but if at all possible, I won’t do that again. There was very little storage space. There was one row of drawers under the TV. The closet had shelves were you could put your under clothes and folded up shirts. There were plenty of hangers. We put our suitcases under the bed. There were two small sofas for places to sit. Some have said that you couldn’t hear the music in the promenade rooms. Not so. It wasn’t blaring but we could hear it. Two floors down from us was a bar with an area for a band and we could always hear them playing. It didn’t bother us though. I loved the central location of this room. It was very easy getting around. The a/c in this room was perfect. I had taken a fan but didn’t even need it. I can’t begin to tell you how small the bathroom was. But if you are very small people, say a size less than 14, it probably wouldn’t seem so small to you. Our room attendant was Raul and he was the best! We didn’t see him the first day but told another person that we needed ice in our room if they could tell Raul for us and we had ice twice a day every day after that. We did meet him on the second day and saw him a lot after that. He always greeted us by our name. We asked him for wine glasses for our wine that we brought on board and he brought those to us. Dining Here is where I had some issues. I didn’t like hardly any of the food. The breakfast buffet area was huge. There was everything imaginable. Lots of stuff that I would never eat at breakfast though. I had a bagel with ham and bacon everyday and some days I had grits and eggs which were really good. The bacon was so greasy and not cooked very crisp. They had fresh cooked omelets and fried eggs. There really was something for everyone even though not cooked very well. The scrambled eggs were like a powdered egg mix. Disgusting. The pancake syrup was horrible. Bring your own if you like pancakes. Lunch, didn’t care for a lot of the dishes. The hamburgers and hot dogs were lukewarm to cold. I’m used to an open grill where you see them making the hamburgers and you can get hot ones. Nothing like that here. Everything was made behind closed doors and brought out in pans. The French fries were pretty good. We ate at Johnny Rockets because we knew the food would be hot and fresh and good! There is a little deli that serves food after hours. They had a lot of cold sandwiches, no more Panini’s like they had before a few years ago. You could get pizza there. It was ok. My husband didn’t like it at all. And you could get cookies and sweets there. No midnight buffet. Nowhere to get nachos or a hot snack late in the evening. Very disappointing. On Carnival, you can get hamburgers and pizza late at night. You could call room service but that took an hour and a half!! MDR- We had the best server, Drazen. He was an older man around 56 maybe. He took great care of us. Even when some of our tablemates came late to dinner nearly every day, he still took good care of us. Again, didn’t like the food. I am not a picky eater! I found something every night that I could eat but the choices wasn’t good in my opinion. Entertainment. We saw some really good shows in the theater. I was just uncomfortable with the tight seating. The Beach boys cover band was really good. We failed to get tickets for the ice skating so we didn’t get to see that. They are free; you just have to get them by Tuesday. We loved the Bubba Feathers Band. We went to see them every chance we got. There was also a Latin band and a reggae band that was really good. No problem finding something to do in the evening. Our cruise director Mitch was really good too. For once, one that spoke great English! We really enjoyed the Solarium, adult only area. The pool was nice and there were two huge hot tubs. We went into the middle pool area some but not much. We sat on the top deck and watched some of the activities going on at the pool. Two different days they cook some stuff out on the pool deck. Jambalaya, we missed that day because we slept in and then bbq ribs and chicken. The ribs were really good. Missing was… the waiters didn’t sing or dance this time around. I kinda enjoyed seeing them that in the past but no big deal.   Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
First and foremost I am a Royal Caribbean fan. I have sailed on Freedom, Explorer, And Oasis. I have also sailed on Princess. The trip out of Galveston in August should by no means be reflective of my overall RCI experiences. With that ... Read More
First and foremost I am a Royal Caribbean fan. I have sailed on Freedom, Explorer, And Oasis. I have also sailed on Princess. The trip out of Galveston in August should by no means be reflective of my overall RCI experiences. With that said, I will never ever ever ever ever sail out of Galveston again until the port terminal is upgraded. Even with a preferred status (Platinum member) our embarkation was slow, disorganized, and more importantly - it set a negative tone for my three first-time sailing companions. I set the bar high in describing my previous sailing experiences but in retrospect, these experiences were always out of Ft Lauderdale and Miami. Florida has the terminals and the experience. Texas does not. The morning started with a 23.00 cab fare that should have been 13.00. The problem? One police officer directing traffic into the loading area. We sat and sat in the cab while one bus or car at a time was allowed through. Next came the disaster of baggage handling. Lines and confusion reigned. No direction, no calming influence of a competent staffer, no joy. Instead we were met with the ridiculousness of a Port employee trying to argue with a RCI agent who was unsuccessfully trying to get the port employee to use his head for something other than a hat-rack. All passengers were in a line with their bags dutifully near them. It seemed weird and so I asked the first available porter if he could take our bags. He gladly did so explaining that the system was entirely screwed up that day. Why we're we in line in the first place? Because everyone else was. I decided not to stay in the lemming line. After turning over our bags we proceeded to the cue to enter the terminal. Alas, another Port employee cueing us up incorrectly. The way the line was set, others realized they could cut in and did so, or inadvertently cut because of the way the line was configured. Thank goodness the security and registration lines were flowing. Once aboard the trip was typical RCI meaning fabulous and fun - with the exception of the Grand Cayman tendering debacle. Long lines but at least they moved. Overall, the trip was fun although I have noted some lapses in the manner in which the crew handled requests that couldn't be accommodated. There was too much "no" and not enough "unfortunately we must ..." Perhaps this is cultural in that I have noted fewer Filipino and Island staffers (who are noted for their hospitality and warmth) and more Eastern European staffers. Finally, RCI might want to revisit its' dining policies. I saw way too many unchallenged in the wear of hats, shorts, and booty shorts in the main dining area. I though we were supposed to be smart casual ... Even with these issues, I will gladly sail with RCI just not of Galveston. Especially since the Gulf was dirty, full of Oil Platforms, and crowded. By the way .... If you buy alcohol expect the saving to dwindle. Texas has their hands in your pocket as well. Leaving the terminal we were forced to pay a tax and given a tax stamp "to affix to your bottle if ever you take it out of the house" WHAT? I live in Washington State when and why would I take my bottle to any party in Texas? It was just a money grab plain and simple. I'd gladly pay the customs duty but the Texas two step wasn't a dance ... It was me getting out of there. Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
Sailed Eastern Caribbean On 07/13/2014  Balcony Room on Starboard Side If the ship faces the same way each time it docks then port side would have been better. I know that some consider Carnival a "lower class" of ship and ... Read More
Sailed Eastern Caribbean On 07/13/2014  Balcony Room on Starboard Side If the ship faces the same way each time it docks then port side would have been better. I know that some consider Carnival a "lower class" of ship and passengers, but they are the fun ship and do know/remember how to have a good time. I submitted my electronic comment card today with the following attached. I'd like to consider myself a regular cruiser. I'm 39 years old and did not start cruising until about 15 years ago. In that time I have been on 10 cruises, on two cruise lines - Royal Caribbean and Carnival. My first experience with Royal Caribbean was on Liberty of the Seas in 2008. 2010 I had the pleasure of cruising on Oasis of the Seas (best ship design, experience, etc. of all my cruises). Navigator of the Seas came with mixed reviews online, but it was one of two ships sailing to the ports I was wanting to visit, and left from a different port other than those in FL. So I gathered a group of 6, including my wife and myself, and we booked this last cruise. Boarding the ship was easy and fast. I forget the exact time of our arrival, around 1:30pm ish. Checked our bags with a porter, got in line, made it through x-ray/security check point, and then we were put into a giant bigger than Disneyland line. One of my traveling companions is pregnant and a staff member took us aside to a no line check in. Not sure how long that line would have taken us but by the looks on people’s faces, they were very jealous of us walking up to the front after only 5-10 minutes in line. Check in was fairly smooth, but appeared a little hectic where we were located (far right if facing counter). I'm guessing this is the problem line and entertainer check in as we saw the onboard band checking in next to us. Once on board we proceeded straight to our stateroom, which was already available for us. I think on most cruises we are there a little early and have to wait for our rooms so this was welcomed change for us to be able to ditch our belongings and get down to the cruise pocket stuff - room key and camera. Quick entertainment note - it was the world cup final. The game was playing on the big screen. No music. No band; just the world cup audio. I get that millions of people love the world cup, but this is day 1 of a Caribbean cruise, where was the Caribbean band? The music? The cruise ship ambiance I have had on all other voyages? Missing. It was a bunch of people sitting, laying, and standing around watching a big TV. Although entertaining because it is world cup, it would have been better to have the game silenced and some music playing or the band playing. After the stateroom drop off, it was time for my first drink of every cruise - mango margarita. No idea why that's my first drink, just kind of started years ago and the tradition continued with our group of 6. The pregnant one obviously was not going to drink alcohol. Her husband had already purchased the premium drink package prior to boarding. My other friend had purchased the ultimate drink package. My sister, my wife, and myself did not purchase any drink packages prior to boarding. The information on the website was crystal clear and the reviews online were back and forth with answers, so I figured we would just ask an employee once there to see if it was good for us or not. My wife and my sister are moderate drinkers and I drink a bit more than they do, but like particular brands of whiskey, beer, etc. Our first stop for mango margaritas was the Solarium Bar. The bartender there (a male, unknown name) was whom we first asked for drink package information. His initial response to the drink packages was that they were not worth it. He continued on a bit about price per drink and port days where people don't drink, before my friend with the ultimate package interrupted him. My friend explained he already purchased the package and wanted to know if there were exclusions to what types of alcohol or price limits. We were told we could have any drink up to $10 in value, after that we would be required to pay the difference. As in a $12 drink would cost us $2 with a drink package. After thinking about what the bartender initially said about price per drink, I thought at $6-$8 a drink I'm not sure the package would benefit my wife at all, and I would probably break even or come out slightly ahead. I asked the bartender when do I have to purchase the package by? He responded to me I could purchase it on any day of the cruise. This was different than what I had originally read online, which I believe was it had to be purchased in the first 2 or 4 days of the cruise (cant recall as it was online info and I wanted direct info from an employee). I then asked what happens if I drink more than $55 in drinks today? His response was not perfectly clear (as I am guessing English was not his first language) but it was something to the extent of you would pay the $55 for that day and all the other days. To clarify I asked, if I drink $120 worth of alcohol today (day 1) and decide to buy the package tomorrow (day 2) what happens to the amount above and beyond the $120? Do I pay $55 plus the extra ($65) or just the $55 for the package and they (Royal Caribbean) zero out the drinks above and beyond that? His response to me was that I would only pay the $55 for that day and not the extra ($65). Since that was the case, I decided to wait and see how much my wife and I drank to see if either of us or neither of us needed the package. My sister decided the same thing. Now this was my sister's first cruise. I was the organizer of the cruise and therefor felt responsible for her from that perspective as well as from an older brother perspective. 6 mango margaritas were ordered (1 virgin of course) and first drink of the cruise photo taken. All seemed well. We proceeded to another couple of bars, I don’t recall which or in which order. We asked another couple of bartenders about the packages and received similar responses. Variances in answers were in regards to when the drink packages could be purchased up to. Some said any of the 7 days, while we had answers that were down to only during the first 2 days. I wasn't worried about that because I knew we were going to make a decision on day 2 regardless. The other variances in answers were in regards to how often could we buy a drink. Could I buy a whiskey with a beer at the same time, was my base question. Answers ranged from yes all the way up to having to wait 20 minutes between drinks. We asked if that was a computer thing, meaning would the computer prevent me from buying before the 10 - 20 minute wait time had expired, or could I walk to the next bar and by the other drink. No one was really ever able to give us a straight legitimate answer on this topic. Day 2 came around and I checked my bar tab for day 1. I was clearly over the $55 mark. For me it was going to be worth the drink package. For my wife, she decided against it, as she didn't feel she would have more than a drink or two on port days. My sister decided since it was her first cruise she would go with the package in order to have a fixed known drink expense, and not have to worry about her bar tab while she is out trying to enjoy her first cruise vacation. After breakfast, a quick poolside relaxing suntan, and a couple poolside drinks, we proceeded to grab a bite at the Windjammer Cafe. While there, an employee again told us we could purchase the drink package anytime during the 7-day cruise. Luckily there were guests sitting nearby. They interjected their response into our conversation, stating yes, but you will be charged for all drinks every day as well as the $55 a day package price. We asked if this was true, and could not get a clear enough explanation from the bartender. So rather than order the package there at the Windjammer bar, we went back to our stateroom. I contacted the operator to ask the question. I spoke with the operator who told me we would be charged for all drinks from day 1, plus $55 a day for the package for all 7 days. Now I understand it is more of a package price of $385 for the drink package, and when broken down that comes out to a daily amount of $55. I get that. That's fine. What I did not get or appreciate was why so many employees aboard the ship would give us the wrong info. All the original bartender at the Solarium bar had to do was give us the correct information from the start and he would have definitely sold 2 packages and probably a 3rd to my wife (as after this experience my wife said she didn't care to give Royal Caribbean any more of our money when it came to alcohol). I explained what we were told to the operator. She said she would have the Bar supervisor contact me. I called my sister, and she had told me she was just informed the same thing from the operator. I called back to the operator (a bit angry now - going back to that planning the cruise and big brother thing) and was transferred to the bar supervisor. Told him the entire story of what happened where and how many times. His response to me was there was nothing he could do for me, at all. I asked who could do something for me, and he relied his boss the bar manager. I asked to speak with him, and was told he would call me. I waited in my stateroom and received a call. This time the caller (can't recall name) told me he understood my situation as I wanted the premium package but only wanted to pay for 6 days. I explained to him no, that is not it. I explained all the above of what happened and what we were told. So again he tells me, he can not sell me just 6 day package as it is one all inclusive drink package for $385, and that can not be broken down. I explained to him again, that is not what I want. I want what your employees said - 7 day drink package for $385 or $55 a day as they advertise it, and my first day drinks to be part of that package. His response to me was there was nothing the ship could do for me, as these are rules brought on by the upper management at home on land. Assuming this to be true, I explained could not believe the ship or the "upper management at home on land" would be willing to lose 2 to 6 future Royal Caribbean customers over a few drinks. His response, a chuckle. Now I was quite a bit angrier. So I asked for his name (still can't remember it) and his position on the ship. He gave me his name and said he was the assistant bar manager. I told him I did not request to be contacted by the assistant bar manager and I wanted to speak with the bar manager, no more assistants or supervisors. He said the bar manager was on break. I asked until when, he said he was probably in his stateroom and he could wake him for me. That was fine by me. Several minutes later I received a call from the bar manager (AJ or RJ). I asked him if he had been explained why I was wanting to speak with him, he told me, "Yes because you want to purchase a drink package for 6 days instead of 7. We don't do that." In complete aggravation I explained the entire situation over again. Ultimately his 'solution' went against what everyone else had been saying all along and what he initially stated. His solution was to sell my sister and me a 6-day drink package, and zero out the afternoon drinks from day 2 but no drinks from day 1. I told him this was not up to my satisfaction of a solution but rather than waste any more of my vacation time bickering over a few dollars to do it. I explained to him the idea that none of the bartenders that I spoke with could properly explain the package is a huge opportunity for them to do some retraining or rethinking of the drink packages. They should stand behind what their employees are telling and selling people. And then to be told by 4 people the package is a package at a fixed price and can not be changed, only to have 1 of those 4 people change the package and the price, gives them zero credibility. I did get most of my drinks from that date subtracted from my bill but not all. Before coming up with his solution, he quizzed me on what time I got aboard the ship, what bar did I go to, who did I talk to, and so on. No big deal. I wasn't lying or making stuff up, so I gave him all the info I could. Suddenly he found our mango margarita transaction(s) and then made the offer. I found that a bit odd and irritating. I'm sure many people lie or try to lie to save money or cheat the system, so I ignored it. However, I found this to be a continuing theme throughout our trip. Later in the 3rd day I believe it was, I was at a bar by the pool getting a drink. The bartender took my card and then kept looking at the computer and then at me, and then at the computer and then at my card. This went on for a bit so I asked if my card was reading ok. He said my folio number on my card did not match what was in the computer. I said I have no idea what that means or why but its worked fine up until this point. He gave me my drink and suggested I get a new card. I am sure people pretend to lose their card so their underage friend can go buy a drink with the lost card while the true owner has the new card. I wrote this off as the bartender doing his job, despite making me feel like I'm suspect to some underage drinking or fake folio scheme. I went to get my new card later that day at the customer service desk. The gentleman there told me I had another card issued and this was my old car. I explained this is the only card I have had since boarding and never requested another card at all. He told me I did in fact have another card issued. Again, I did not. Could it have been someone else somehow getting my card and now I have false charges? After my third time of being made to feel like I'm trying to cheat the system, I was told I would be issued a new card. He gave me a print out of my room charges but there was nothing that I did not charge there. Weird. Only thing I could think of was if the beverage package being charged caused my folio to change and made my card folio not match my current folio. However, I was not able to find that out because I was more of a hassle (another theme) to customer service than a guest having a difficult time. A passenger is a burden these days it seems. Other than the main dining room and my stateroom attendant, everywhere else it seemed as though I was an inconvenience to the staff. Trying to order a drink, with or without a line, took forever and was missing that cruise ship feel of fun and happiness. Maybe it's the drink packages? Does the staff no longer get what they should in tips? Every receipt says gratuity is included. And I would add additional if I felt they deserved it. But overall, I felt like I was a burden to them for trying to buy a drink or get a water. Buying drinks and getting water - what is the actual policy? Can I order a shot of whiskey and a beer? Can I have a water and an alcoholic beverage? Can I have two bottles of water instead of just one? How often can I order something? Is there a time limit? None of these questions were ever answered verbally. I could only try and test them. For the most part it seems like it is at the discretion of the bartender or server. Sometimes I could have a drink in hand and order one to take with me to dinner or the pool. Other times I was told you have to finish that drink before I can give you another one. What if I don’t like it? What if I don’t want that anymore? I was told we could walk from one bar to another without a problem in ordering drinks, and that seemed to be the case. I don’t need to pound drink after drink, but sometimes it is nice to have one to walk with and one to have when you get to your destination. Policy on this should be made clear and be more customer friendly. The main dining room was by far the best service aboard the ship. Assistant waiter Florentina was awesome. Great personality, super helpful, and friendly. She is what cruising should be about, or at least that is the way I remember cruise service being. Our cocktail server in the main dining room was also good and should be recognized. I believe his name was "Dee." Our stateroom was always clean, never had any issues or problems, and our attendant magically crept in and out when we were not in the room. On one occasion we were rushed and left our in room safe open containing wedding rings, cameras, cash, wallets, passports, etc. Nothing missing. Don't even think anything was touched. Good job to Arlex. Overall I wish more of the staff everywhere addressed people by name and with a smile. Both of those were severely lacking. I was "asked" to order drinks several times with nothing more than a head nod. Although, there was one bartender definitely stood out at the pool bar. He was nice and friendly and made up a custom drink for my friend and I. I think is first name was Edward and he was from the Philippines. The entertainment aboard the navigator was not bad, but it was definitely my least favorite of all cruises. Like I said the missing music or band when boarding was terrible. The DJ's set at the club was basically the same every night. I knew at a certain time in the night the music was going to switch to a particular type that I did not like and that was my cue to leave. Would have liked to stay out later and drink more on most nights. The outdoor party/dance I have done before on a previous sailing. This time however the outdoor party was Miami themed, but said dress casual, and it was after a formal night dinner. Huh? If I'm dressed up for formal night, I would like to make good use out of the time and effort my wife and I put into getting ready and enjoy the night. I don't want to go change into casual attire. And although I associated a Miami theme with being more casual than formal night, it's definitely dressier in Miami than cruise ship casual. The music was too quite. Probably because of stateroom noise. There are two spas, a pool, and a bar right there, and all that was utilized were two hallway sized sections as a dance floor, and a bar with a long line. How about a deck pool party? Servers actually walking around trying to take drink orders? Regardless, following a formal night dinner, whatever after party there is should remain formal. Another side note - the last night of the cruise while walking the ship, we came across the crew area where they had music playing. Their music from a deck above sounded better than the outdoor party music by far, and had way more bass than the normal night club. I know it is more of a Carnival thing to do dining room dances or songs, but that stuff is fun! And I could have sworn I have seen Royal Caribbean sing or something in the past. Dinner service was still the best customer service on board, just lacking that entertainment piece. The piano wasn't even playing one night until we asked about it. I did not do any excursions through Royal Caribbean. The information seemed a bit lacking online, so I booked with outside companies. Overall cleanliness of the ship was nice. Rarely saw any drinks left behind on the deck or in planters. Trash and plates always cleared from tables. There were a few rails that were really sticky - probably salt water or spilled alcohol. Back of the ship had some really bad salt build up (I'm hoping) on the rail. It stuck all over our forearms when looking out that back of the ship. I am sure several complaints have been made for the photo mishap aboard this sailing. We were told day after day, photos would be up tomorrow. Well tomorrow ended up being day 7 of the cruise. Long lines, missing photos, some printed out already, some not, and more lines. It was just a mess. Apparently some software error with facial recognition. We were only able to buy two photos. I think we were the only ones out of our group that purchased photos because of this mishap. There was the welcome back party for previous cruisers. 5 of 6 of our group were previous cruisers, my sister being the only new one. Between the 6 of us, we were in 3 staterooms. Only one of the three staterooms received an invite to the party. My wife and I (both previous cruisers) did not receive one. Debarking with tenders was delayed and slow. However, I am not sure I have ever been on a cruise where the tender operation ran perfectly smooth. End of cruise debarkation. Our morning started off a bit rushed because we had to deal with the picking up of our ordered photos from the day before. Most debarkation process was standard and smooth until it was time to actually walk off the ship. Long lines on the exit deck to swipe our cards. Once we were in the customs area, that is where the real disorganization began. We were smart enough to read signs and ask questions, but saw several people throwing a fit over the long waits and lack of organization. Still took longer than expected to get off the boat and through customs, but others were waiting much longer trying to figure out the porter vs. no porter situation. Overall, it was our big vacation for the year, so I would hate to say I did not have a good time. I was with great people and went to some fun Caribbean destinations. Overall I had fun on the cruise. The cruise could have definitely been an amazing trip if staff was able to resolve issues better, provide accurate and correct information, smile and greet passengers as though they appreciate us being their, and there was a few upgrades or adjustments in entertainment. I wont say I will never sail with Royal Caribbean again, because I base my bookings off of destinations and dates mainly. However, I will say if there is another option for the same ports (i.e. Carnival Magic for this last itinerary) I would lean towards the other option. I hope someone actually read all of this. I know it was long.   Read Less
Sail Date July 2014
I took my 9 and 11 year old kids on this cruise so my review will be most helpful to families. CABIN: We had an ocean view cabin forward on Deck 2 and it was just a little tight but definitely manageable. My daughter and I shared the king ... Read More
I took my 9 and 11 year old kids on this cruise so my review will be most helpful to families. CABIN: We had an ocean view cabin forward on Deck 2 and it was just a little tight but definitely manageable. My daughter and I shared the king bed and every evening our cabin steward brought down a bunk bed from the ceiling for my son. I think it would be difficult to have both bunk beds down at once as they hang directly over the bed. There was ample storage space for our clothes and luggage. The shower is tiny so just be prepared for that. We were in a cabin near the Metropolis Theater but were far enough away that we never heard noise. ENTERTAINMENT: The kids loved the pool side movies at night (although only 2 of the 7 nights were kid friendly movies), the flow rider (they were too short for stand up surfing but could do boogie boarding), the rock wall, the ice skating and even the acrobatics show on the last night. I took them to the kids club and showed them around and they were not impressed and didn't want to go there. There weren't that many kids on the ship in early May so I think it just wasn't as lively as other times of the year. POOLS: There are a couple of pools and a few hot tubs but there are no water slides for the kids. There were always plenty of deck chairs and they were happy to swim for an hour or two each day. FOOD: The Windjammer buffet had tons of choices for the kids and they were always thrilled to eat there. Near the Windjammer there are ice cream stations but they only seem to be open a few hours a day. We had breakfast and lunch in the dining room once or twice. At breakfast they made the kids chocolate milks. At lunch there is a nice salad bar where you get to pick what you want and an attendant will mix your salad for you. Dinner in the dining room is lovely but a 90 minute to 2 hour event. My kids actually enjoyed it but it might not be for everyone. There is a kids' menu but mine are mostly from the adult menu. Our waiter was willing to order special dishes like an iceburg salad with Ranch for my kids. We also ordered breakfast in our room a couple of mornings and that worked really well. There is also a cafe on the promenade deck that has scones and pastries and we liked to go there in the afternoon for a snack. EXCURSIONS: Since I was traveling alone with my kids I booked excursions at each port through Royal Caribbean. In Cozumel we did the Playa Beach break and it is very kid-friendly with a big pool, slides, ocean swimming/snorkeling, lunch buffet, an amazing floating obstacle course, hammocks and even a few beach games. This would be a great excursion if you have a toddler because there was a large splash area/pool just for them. In Grand Caymen we went to the turtle farm and again this was a great choice for kids. We learned a lot about the turtles and they let us hold them. Then we could swim/snorkel in a lagoon or in a pool and there was a reasonably priced restaurant on site. The gift shop there was also very nice and reasonably priced. In Jamaica we went river tubing and then hiked the Dunns River Falls. Kids loved every minute of it.   Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
The add on costs of this cruise and the long lines to get on and off the ship are never mentioned in any reviews I have read. We had to stay in a Hotel over night, and pay for a shuttle to and from Dallas, the hotel was 143.00 and the ... Read More
The add on costs of this cruise and the long lines to get on and off the ship are never mentioned in any reviews I have read. We had to stay in a Hotel over night, and pay for a shuttle to and from Dallas, the hotel was 143.00 and the shuttle 361.00 round trip for 6. The ship got into port late because of fog, all passengers for this ship were in the ship terminal at the same time, all 3,000 +. We were standing in line to get our ship boarding pass from 4:00 in the afternoon until 7:00pm we got on at 7:00 PM. No water to drink no food, just mass confusion. Our bags made it to our room at 12:00 PM. We sat in port until Monday morning 8:00am the ship left the dock at 8:30. Now we left the port late so we had to make up time at sea, the sun was out but the wind on the deck with the pool 11th floor was so strong you could only stay out there for 30 min. or so. Our room was on the 7th floor aft , the whole hall way smelt of mildew and mold, other times it smelt of raw sewage. Not sure why, our cabin steward could not give us a cause for this smell. Our room was very nice, nice bed, very clean lots of storage space. This is our 5th cruise and we found the service from the help in the Windjammer was lacking. It seemed they were sort staffed. Staff was slow to clean up plates and bring you a hot or cold drink to your table, most of the time we got our own. The food in the Windjammer was just run of the mill, nothing special, lots of it but nothing to write home about. We saw the captain and his crew eat there once in 7 days. They made sure we saw them with lots of walking around looking at all the food stations. We went on a tour in Roatan and Belize, we rode in vans that were very small and if you had any trouble with your back, neck or knees this was not for you. The pot holes in the roads in Belize could jar the fillings from your teeth. These two places were very poor and had lots of trash blowing around and all over the roads if you could call them that. The entertainment was very good and all of us enjoyed the skating and the shows in the Metropolis. The new flat big screen featured a movie every night on deck 11 but had no pop corn to go with it. Disembarkation was fantastic on this ship, very orderly, we were off the ship in record time, we had breakfast at 6:00am and were in our holding area with our bags at 7:15 and started getting off at 7:30 we were off the ship and waiting for our shuttle at 8:15. I am not sure we would sail with this cruise line again, no matter what the price. Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
This was our third Caribbean cruise but our first on RCCL and our first time to Grand Cayman and Falmouth Jamaica. We were planning to do the 'Dickens on the Strand' thing in Galveston with some friends and ended up taking a last ... Read More
This was our third Caribbean cruise but our first on RCCL and our first time to Grand Cayman and Falmouth Jamaica. We were planning to do the 'Dickens on the Strand' thing in Galveston with some friends and ended up taking a last minute bargain basement cruise to get out of the cold weather for awhile. The price was so good we decided to upgrade to a balcony which was also a first as we normally spend little time in our room, preferring to explore every nook and cranny on the ship. The balcony acted as a kind of human magnet and we ended up spending far more time in the room than normal! In a way that was not good as toward the end of the cruise I mentioned that we had seen little of the ship on this trip. As far as the ship and accomodations are concerned, what is there to say? We typically look at the ship as a sort of floating hotel and transportation rather than a destination. We did our usual thing: eat too much, enjoy as much of the onboard entertainment as possible, and drink a little. I normally have fairly low expectations but when the bar girl at one of the lounges announced that they had no single malt scotch I was rather surprised. I was then dumbfounded when after I asked for a scotch with no ice or water and a side of water she brought me the usual watered down scotch/water/ice combo. After she realized her mistake she took it back, took out the ice, and brought the scotch and water back! Oh well. It was a fun evening anyway and made for a good story later. There were several highlights on the trip. Leading the pack was meeting a local from Falmouth with the same last name as mine. I knew it was a fairly common name on the island dating back to the old English plantation owners so I used FB to track down a Falmouth resident by that name and invited him to lunch. We had a grand time! Along with our walking tour of the old port town of Falmouth it gave us a unique peek into the local scene. Jamaica is an interesting place with lovely people and I put it on my list of places to go back to. Second hit of the trip was meeting up with a group of fellow geocachers on the CC Roll Call forum. We did a little geocaching along the way and swapped stories on board. Grand Cayman was new to us so we were delighted when a local shop owner came out and greeted us at one of our geocaching locations and regaled us with local stories. On the downside, embarkation was the pits with huge crowds, long lines, and a long long wait to get onboard. Getting off was easier but my wife lost her passport somewhere in the meelee and we ended up having to get another. While the shows at night were good, the entertainment in the lounges was not as good as we've had on other cruises and generally pretty poor. All in all the trip met or exceeded all my expectations. Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
Navigator of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 4.3
Dining 4.5 3.9
Entertainment 5.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.1
Family 5.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 2.0 3.4
Service 4.5 4.3
Value For Money 4.5 3.8
Rates 4.5 4.2

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