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5 Dover to Europe - Western Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

Allocated a cabin midships under open deck - noise intrusion from footfalls - chairs and tables being moved and also wheeled cabinets meant we could not use our balcony or get relaxing sleep at all. Noise intrusion was for some 20 ... Read More
Allocated a cabin midships under open deck - noise intrusion from footfalls - chairs and tables being moved and also wheeled cabinets meant we could not use our balcony or get relaxing sleep at all. Noise intrusion was for some 20 hours plus per day and despite formal complaints nothing was done to alleviate the problem which completely ruined our holiday. P&O have catered for the mass market with the design of this ship and regular cruisers looking for a quality holiday should avoid at all cost allowing P&O to allocate /select cabins for them . We made the best of it but will never book a cruise on this ship again. It sounds ridiculous but we actually prayed for bad weather to keep passengers off the open deck above us to allow a few hours to get some sleep. To add insult to injury on our return home we discovered our cases had been tampered with during embarkation and 2 expensive pairs of sunglasses stolen. P&O will just suggest claiming on insurance for the items instead of accepting they have a problem with security of our belongings has i found out a few years ago when a similar problem arose at Southampton after a Oriana cruise .. Be aware to not put easy to access expensive items in your luggage. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
We were on deck four on an inside cabin. The noise and vibration were terrible.The walls shook.The bed shook. We had to wrap the glasses and cups in a towel to stop them from banging together and smashing. We asked to be moved and were put ... Read More
We were on deck four on an inside cabin. The noise and vibration were terrible.The walls shook.The bed shook. We had to wrap the glasses and cups in a towel to stop them from banging together and smashing. We asked to be moved and were put down on deck two in an outside cabin. Just as bad but at least we had a port hole. They did provide ear plugs but still got headache from the vibration. I got into the habit of sleeping on the top deck in the day and staying awake at night. Even at three in the morning you can't find peace. They have piped music all over the ship. The food was ok.Some passengers thought it was good. Not up to the standard of a Princess cruise. Very limited selection for my wife who is a vegetarian. Entertainment was average with the crew doing about 40% of the shows. They had a classical guitarist, a classical violinist and a comedian. Staff were very good and friendly couldn't fault them at all. Cabin was clean and kept to a high standard. If you do go on this ship. Go as high as you can afford and towards the front of the ship. Every where else really is very noisy and vibrating. I thought it was fairly calm but quiet a few passengers and crew suffered with sea sickness. Trying to find some good points. The embarkation was smooth and well organised. Better that Princess. But all in all I wouldn't go on it again.Lots of people complained we weren't in port long enough to do anything. Half day stops. Read Less
Sail Date October 2010
It was with real surprise to have received a letter from the MSC Club asking if I would contribute 'a short, impartial review of your experience of your cruise with us' to this web site. Why you might ask, well simply put our ... Read More
It was with real surprise to have received a letter from the MSC Club asking if I would contribute 'a short, impartial review of your experience of your cruise with us' to this web site. Why you might ask, well simply put our cruise was the worst we have ever experienced. You might think that MSC would have done a little more background checking before mass mailing a letter to all its previous cruisers, especially when we spent 6 months trying to get some form of acceptable compensation from them.   Anyway some background. Having cruised before we thought we would try something different and so choose MSC's 'Italian' sophistication for my milestone 40th. We really wish we hadn't. We chose the inaugural sailing of the MSC Poesia taking in Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Italy with a two night stay in Venice at the end. Now with anything new I expect some issues it's only natural, however I didn't expect them to happen before we even boarded. The major problem was when MSC changed our specifically booked hotel accommodation without notice and instead gave us a room in business hotel situated by the junction of a motorway, which we got a nice view of from our window. After I didn't some comparisons I found that the hotel we got was over £200 cheaper for the two nights than the one we booked and paid extra for. I raised the issue with reservations in the UK before we boarded and then again when we got on board. All I got was assurances it would be sorted out before we departed the ship in Venice - in short it wasn't.   As for the ship well when we got on the ship things started ok but it didn't take long before a number of other things came up. For instance   -          The gym did not have a supply of water, you were expected to pay for it at the bar just outside. -          Tap water was not freely available and took the restaurant staff 3 days to get to grips with the idea. -          Tea and coffee - not specialities, had to be bought everywhere except in the restaurants. -          Only one English speaking hostess available on the entire ship that was carrying over 1500 people who spoke English as their first language. -          The Italian crew members were at best unhelpful, probably due to their lack of understanding basic English, thank God for my Italian which was better than their English and that is saying something! -          Oh and of course being Italian they and were more concerned with their appearance and self importance to be of any use when you were able to communicate your needs. -          Cabin staff that needed to pay more attention to actually dusting and cleaning the glass and mirrors. -          The cinema mentioned in the literature that wasn't available/finished - we never did find out which.   I could go on with numerous other small points that when you put them altogether really puts a large black cloud over the whole experience.   At the end of the day my numerous letters of complaint did nothing to sway MSC and in general they just weren't interested in resolving anything once they had our money.   Would I cruise with MSC again? Well not at my expense. However, if anyone wants to send me on one to see if anything's changed and provide another impartial review on that feel free to get in touch.   In short, my opinion - 5 star hotel, 3 star food and 2 star service. If MSC are trying to develop their business in the UK market, they have a long, long way to go. I know of other lines that for less than the £3,000 we spent give better service, have friendlier staff and are more customer focus than this lot. Read Less
Sail Date April 2009
If you're under 60 - then our strong advice is DON'T GO ON ARCADIA!! The mean average age on our cruise was 68 (with a median probably over 70??!!). Virtually all the entertainment was geared toward OAP's. First time ... Read More
If you're under 60 - then our strong advice is DON'T GO ON ARCADIA!! The mean average age on our cruise was 68 (with a median probably over 70??!!). Virtually all the entertainment was geared toward OAP's. First time cruisers, my wife (43) & I (51) - & both retired - didn't fit in as we did not waltz or quick step, we're not into quizzes, don't like deck quoits or "art auctions", don't want to see a show where everything being performed was written before we were born etc etc. Even Tom O'Connor geared his act up to the 70-somethings. We paid top whack for a quality cabin (A62) & foolishly expected a "stateroom with balcony" but actually got a cabin that was below Travel Inn standard. Even the dismal wardrobes were inadequate & not fit for purpose as you could not hang your suits without them being crushed in. The balcony was consistently wet & unusable. This misnomer is simply taking the proverbial! We ate at Arcadian Rhodes: dismal experience as the food came out cold (& was sent back) plus it was so salty that it rendered it virtually inedible - yet the staff were not bothered by our complaints. We sat down at 8.30 & it was a relief to leave at gone midnight. The Meridian restaurant was generally of an expected standard although even that wavered a few times such that we ate at The Belvedere self-service a couple of nights. Swimming pools? Well, the Neptune Pool area with its uncomfy fixed-back loungers was usually an unpleasant area & the Aquarius Pool area was simply small & crowded. We usually went up to the higher levels where there was always plenty of sun beds (probably due to the fact that the average cruiser was too old to negotiate the stairs!). Night Club: yes but very small and not enough people young enough to use it - it didn't get going at all until around 1.00am & most people had gone to bed ages ago! Good points? Not many! The staff (generally) were simply exceptional. The social aspect of cruising was surprisingly pleasant. The Crows Nest bar area was generally excellent (until then the quiz took over at 11.00pm when we and friends we'd met there usually went elsewhere or to bed). The Spa & gym were of a high standard (although very hard sell on their products- be warned!!). Finally, be aware of the fact that Arcadia has a propulsion problem such that the whole ship vibrates - particularly on higher decks: if it was a car then you'd take it back! It certainly shakes you to sleep!! All the above points were reported to P & O whilst we were still aboard, but I've not received any written response from them. The Cruise Director (aboard) was deeply concerned that we'd researched this break yet still got aboard a ship that was highly unsuitable for our age group & that our expectations were totally different to reality. I've since re-read the brochure & there is nothing that I've seen that suggests that this is an O A P cruise ship: you have been warned!! To P & O - come clean about the condition of the port propulsion unit & also make it clear to anyone booking that everything is geared toward pensioners! In summary, our opinion is that this was the worst value-for-money break we've ever had. Would we travel with P & O again - doubtful right now! Would we cruise again - definitely but we will book a standard room (at less than half what we paid) and check thoroughly the likely age of passengers! Read Less
Sail Date July 2008
My husband and I have just returned from a 14 night cruise aboard the Legend of the Seas sailing out of Southampton to the Canary Islands. To say we were extremely disappointed is an understatement. They ran out of beer on the 1st ... Read More
My husband and I have just returned from a 14 night cruise aboard the Legend of the Seas sailing out of Southampton to the Canary Islands. To say we were extremely disappointed is an understatement. They ran out of beer on the 1st night of the cruise, then 3 times subsequently. They ran out of fresh milk after 7 days. The entertainment organised by the cruise staff (what little there was)was childish and embarrassing. The Viking Lounge was often closed for private functions and I was asked to leave one day as they apparently wanted a staff meeting in there. The food in the main dining room was below average. Often cold, badly presented and service very slow. In general, the staff were unhelpful, undertrained and disinterested by anything other than tips. The on-board prices, which were in British pounds, were outrageously high. Paying £5 for a brandy!!! And £5.99 for Paracetamol??? Lots of other things but too many to mention. All in all we do not believe that we received anywhere near value for money. Read Less
Sail Date May 2005

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