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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
It was my first experience with Costa Cruise. North Europe destination (Stockholm, Helsinki, St. Petersburg, Tallinn). In short: Embarking - just few minutes, nice welcoming by staff, photo and ID card is ready, you leave baggage at ... Read More
It was my first experience with Costa Cruise. North Europe destination (Stockholm, Helsinki, St. Petersburg, Tallinn). In short: Embarking - just few minutes, nice welcoming by staff, photo and ID card is ready, you leave baggage at collection point and you go straight to the cabin. Your baggage is delivered to your cabin within next half an hour. As simple as is. Cabin: we had balcony one. 1 double bed and i single one. Both comfortable and well sized. Cabin perfectly clean. TV set might have been a bit bigger but was ok. Shower worked well. Dinning: we chose international breakfast option - enough variety of food - whatever you need. All fresh and tasty. Dinners were extremely good. No standing in queues nor waiting for service. Ship - Magica is quite big ship (apprx 110k tons) - means big enough to be stable but not crowded too much Service - as always staff was just perfect - smiling, speaking different languages, polite and well-skilled. Entertainment - we attended 2 events "Voice of the sea" and "Magic moments" - both worth of spending time. Excursions - we prefer organising trips on our own. Stockholm is stunning, packed and extremely expensive; St. Petersburg is incredible (mus see points are Peterhof, Tzarskie Selo, Hermitage, Nevsky Prospect, Issac's church and On Blood Church. All of them you can easily reach on your own using public transport. Value for money - J have no idea why people spend fortunes on other cruise lines whereas they don't offer anything better than Costa (maybe snobbery?). Long story short: take Costa, pay half of what other lines demand and have wonderfull holiday. Robert Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
The cruise itinerary was excellent, lots of time to explore some fascinating cities, and the value for money was reasonable. I was disappointed that none of the traditional Italian foods I was looking forward to like pizzas, gelato and ... Read More
The cruise itinerary was excellent, lots of time to explore some fascinating cities, and the value for money was reasonable. I was disappointed that none of the traditional Italian foods I was looking forward to like pizzas, gelato and coffee were included, all were extra costs. In addition, they lost my bag on disembarkation and made me trek around Stockholm trying to recover it, taking no responsibility for it - the tags they give you and say are needed to reclaim baggage are literally entirely pointless. One or two junior staff tried to assist but on the whole a really awful way to end the trip. Wifi is expensive and no maps or anything are ever provided so without the wifi package it's not easy to get around on your own - and the shuttles into town provided by the liner are ridiculously expensive. The ship itself was pretty nice, except that the slide never worked at all throughout, and most of the passengers were surprisingly pushy and rude. Most of the other people I spoke to who had been on other cruises said they wouldn't use Costa again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
This was our third cruise but first (and last) time with Costa. They first stuck us in a cabin over the propellers and docking machinery. We did get our room changed. All the food tasted ike it was fast food micowaved for the masses. This ... Read More
This was our third cruise but first (and last) time with Costa. They first stuck us in a cabin over the propellers and docking machinery. We did get our room changed. All the food tasted ike it was fast food micowaved for the masses. This was probably to motivate you to try the higher end paying restaurants. Crew looked tired due to working 9 months straight without breaks. Cancelled 3 of our tours and dont even think of taking this ship if you are american or english speaking. Very Italian which implies Patience is not in their DNA nor being soft spoken. Get a good set of earplugs if you take thus cruise. Between the screaming children, rude gestures and poor entertainment we were anxious to leave the ship. Highlights were the wonderful tenor they had only perform one night and after the 50th rendition of 'Volare' heard throughout the ship it finally grew on me :) Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
Let me just start by saying this: if Costa cruise line offered me an all expenses paid cruise to any of their destinations, I wouldn't take it. Costa is H.O.R.R.I.B.L.E. If you haven't booked them yet, please trust me and save your money. ... Read More
Let me just start by saying this: if Costa cruise line offered me an all expenses paid cruise to any of their destinations, I wouldn't take it. Costa is H.O.R.R.I.B.L.E. If you haven't booked them yet, please trust me and save your money. I am on the ship right now as I type. I simply couldn't wait until I got home to do this review because I am so angry and disappointed. We are so miserable and unhappy on this ship that we hardly enjoy the cities once we arrive. Mostly lousy food, terribly uncomfortable and dirty accommodations make for a stressful, awful vacation.  We are seriously considering getting off at the next port and heading home from Hamburg instead of Amsterdam, which is where the cruise ends. Our first impression of the ship (Mediterranea) was that the outside looked tired and dingy. The check-in process was very hectic, disorganized and chaotic. The hallway carpet is absolutely filthy, with clearly visible dirt and stains. The carpet in our room is completely disgusting, to the point where we dare not walk around without shoes. The ship's decor in the public areas is VERY cheap looking, gaudy and dated. We booked a 7-day cruise in a 3 person cabin. It is decorated in colors of the 1980's - light peach, mauve and turquoise.  The bedding is very minimal: one thin comforter, no flat sheet. So, if you get hot at night and only need a light covering, too bad. All you get is a comforter. The extra blankets they provided are very old and worn, they smell awful, and they have rips and tears in them. One extra blanket actually has a huge, yellow stain. I have no idea what it is but it looks like urine. This ship is in DESPERATE need of updating/renovation and of a deep, thorough cleaning. The beds are extremely, ridiculously firm (like nothing I've ever felt, like sleeping on wood) so we can barely get up each morning as we are aching all over, in pain from the awful beds. Food in the buffett is mediocre and it is THE SAME EVERY DAY! Sure, you might have mashed potatoes one day then sliced, roasted potatoes the next but there is very little change to the menu, for breakfast and for dinner. The meats are pretty much always overcooked, and most food items are luke warm, rarely piping hot. Very limited desserts at the buffet...one day, there were only two choices! The waiters/waitresses walk around like unhappy zombies, never smiling and interacting with passengers grudingly and with zero enthusiasm. And  most of the employees in other areas are snarky, rude, barely tolerant and blatantly disrespectful to passengers. If you dont purchase a drink package of any kind, all you get to drink is water, except at breakfast and at "tea time", which is from 4-5p daily. At breakfast, you get unlimited juice, coffee and tea and at tea time, you get coffee and tea, no juice. Otherwise, I hope you enjoy water. We considered buying a drink package until I figured out that the cheapest, non-alchoholic drink package is like €69 (approximately $77 per person USD), and you only get a total of 20 drinks per person for the whole 7-days! That amounts to about $3.85 per drink. That is a total ripoff. So, in our luggage, we brought empty, leakproof plastic bottles from home (Dollar Tree) and fill them with juice at breakfast every morning. We dont let the waiters see us but it's pretty easy to do. Just fill the provided cups with juice (pineapple, grapefruit, orange and apple), bring them to your table, and when the waiter isnt looking, fill your container. There is a little refrigerator in the room so we kept it in there. Had we known, we would have also brought a thermos for hot water or coffee, so we could have it later in the day, without having to pay for it. I'm only giving this advice to those who've already booked and will lose money if they cancel. Otherwise, JUST DON'T BOOK ANY CRUISE ON COSTA!!!! They nickel and dime you for everything! For example, ice cream isn't free on Costa...you have to pay extra for it. The restaurants and buffets completely close down for hours and, unless you pay, there is nothing to eat until they open back up or you are willing to pay for the pizza station or something else that remains open. The buffet closes at 9 or 10 at night and doesn't reopen until 7am! It also closes for some hours before opening back up for dinner. There is nothing for my 12-year old son to do. There are stand alone activities here and there (a lot of them you must pay extra for, like playing Xbox games and air hockey), but no actual kids' club for his age range. There is no movie theater and the shows are kitschy, amateurish and just not well done. At port, they charge you to take a bus into the city center. Yesterday, we arrived into LeHavre, France and were told that it would cost €13 ($15 or so USD) roundtrip, per person to take the Costa provided shuttle to the city center. Turns out the ride is literally about 4 minutes! We opted to walk (for free) and it only took about 20 minutes. The library was closed during prime daylight hours on our day at sea, so my son (who'd run out of his own books to read) had to sit and do nothing. We went to the library 4 or 5 times, at different times of day, and although the room was open, all of the books were locked away. This cruise is BOOOOORRRRIIIIINNNNNGGGG. I could go on writing for hours about how awful this cruise is but suffice it to say: Celebrity is world's above Costa, absolute perfection from beginning to end. They make a laughingstock of Costa...there is absolutely no comparision. Save your money and book pretty much any other cruise line but Costa. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
We feel we are a good judge of cruises this being our 26th, the Embarkation seem slow but we were on board by 2pm & I will say that this ship is well presented & our Cabin was good & the Public area's very good. My first ... Read More
We feel we are a good judge of cruises this being our 26th, the Embarkation seem slow but we were on board by 2pm & I will say that this ship is well presented & our Cabin was good & the Public area's very good. My first surprise was the Cabin Steward asked us when he should come to our Cabin morning or evening, we have never been asked that before but we opted for the morning & that was it. No change of towels in the evening or a 'Turn Down' Service. Unfortunately we suspect it was our waiters first week & he was unable to put the knives & forks on our table correctly & took an age. I did complain & the next night he was given extra help. The food was average I would say & not being a pasta lover this restricted my choice of dinner. One of my complaints was that on every other cruise that we have taken water is given to all seated guests at Dinner as a matter of course, NO, not on Costa ships YOU PAY for water. My other main complaints are that at 10.30am after the breakfast period ALL Coffee machines are closed down & you are then unable to get any hot drink at all, except water. Unless you PAY for a coffee/Tea etc. At 9.30pm all food outlets are closed down & you are not even able to get a biscuit or hot Coffee, unless ofcourse you go to one of the PAY outlets & get a pizza or burger!!!! One thing to watch out for & I missed in all the small print, is that the GRATUITIES/SERVICES ARE MANDATORY & so you are unable to amend even if the service is rubbish. The other thing to be warned about with Costa is that the Information Sheet that you get each day is very limited & does not give you sufficient information about the Port of Call. i.e. in Mykonos, Costa charge you 10 Euro per person for a 3 minute Bus ride into 'Town', which including my 5 yr old Granddaughter. I paid for the 6 tickets & the Bus drops you off about 200 yards from the town, not too far I hear you say. But as you got off the Ship in Port the Water Bus (which you walk past to get to the Costa Bus) costs 2 Euro's each & takes you to the middle of the town. No mention of that in the info sheet. Another observation shall I say is that this Ship has a large outdoor screen which on other ships I have been on, show Music Type video's etc.during the day or cartoons which transcend the language barrier, NO, not Costa all it showed during the day was adverts for their Services i.e. Photo Shop etc. Costa with limited warning changed the Disembarkation Port from Venice to Trieste & because, they say, there was 'civil unrest' in the town & therefore not their choice to amend the Port (to avoid compensation claims). We were intending to get off the ship in Venice & get a taxi to the Airport, but as we were getting off in Trieste this necessitated us taking a 2 hour Bus journey back to the Venice Port & then trying to get a taxi through the 'Civil unrest', (as Costa put it) to the Airport for our flight home. My fear was, we may miss the flight so we were forced to purchase Transfers. Costa then charged us 30 Euros each (including 5 yr old) for a Transfer from Trieste to the Venice Airport. No sorry I will NOT being going with Costa ever again. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
We were just scrolling cruises and saw this one ,unbelievable price ,with just two weeks to sailing ,too good to miss ,so booked it !!! Then I started reading reviews how the crew were surly unhelpful etc...and I thought omg what have ... Read More
We were just scrolling cruises and saw this one ,unbelievable price ,with just two weeks to sailing ,too good to miss ,so booked it !!! Then I started reading reviews how the crew were surly unhelpful etc...and I thought omg what have we done ,and worried for the next two weeks !!!!.... Well , how wrong were the reviews ,or what did people expect ...bowing and scapeing...we found everyone so happy ,glad to help you with anything ... Kelly in reception .. Manuel our waiter ,and Denis always in the restruant with a smile , Eddie our cabin Steward.Saulo, Marvin ,bar waiters ,in fact all the crew ..... The food was very good ,downside ..you had to pay for bottled water at meal times , ...you could ask for anything and they tried to oblige us ..I had mash potatoes every night with my meal (cos I love them ) The cabin were very nice and clean ...downside no tea/coffee making facilities The ship was a bit over OTT ,glass , mirrors , stainless steel everywhere ,but so so clean ,lifts always available,... The nightly shows were disappointing,and not to the standard of P &O Fred Olsen . The ship had lots of nationalitys ,and everyone got along fine ,there was a very happy atmosphere on board ,and I would certainly go with them again ... Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
We wanted to enjoy some of the sites along the mediterranean. Very disappointed with customer service. They were non attentive and did not respond to our concerns. Wait staff were indifferent and sometimes hostile and arrogant. ... Read More
We wanted to enjoy some of the sites along the mediterranean. Very disappointed with customer service. They were non attentive and did not respond to our concerns. Wait staff were indifferent and sometimes hostile and arrogant. Disembarkment and dispensal of passports at the end of the cruise was at best chaotic and disorganized. Recommendation save your money and go on an American cruise line. There you are treated like a king. There were no smoking signs everywhere, all of them were ignored and smoking was everywhere. Cabins were OK. Clean and modern. Entertainment was a joke. All shows were in Italian. No attempt was made to have english speaking shows. Over all the cruise was adequate, if you dont mind putting up with shoddy service, arrogant and inattentive food service people and waiters. The gym had 10 treadmills for 4000 travellers. The pool was more like a kiddy pool. See the world in a different cruise line Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
Picked this cruise because of the ports - Zeebruge, Le Havre, Hambyrg Embarkation in Amsterdam was pretty smooth. Food - the hours when the buffet and restaurants open are pretty odd, the lunch is available from 12 to 3 when almost ... Read More
Picked this cruise because of the ports - Zeebruge, Le Havre, Hambyrg Embarkation in Amsterdam was pretty smooth. Food - the hours when the buffet and restaurants open are pretty odd, the lunch is available from 12 to 3 when almost everybody off the ship (most of the ports hours were from 8 to 20). When people are back to the ship everything is closed until 7 pm and the the buffet is open from 7 to 8:30 and two sittings for finer at the restaurant are 6:30 and 9 pm. Not any food available even for money between 3 pm and until dinner and if you miss your dining sitting there is not any food available. There are cakes at the bars but you have to pay 1.50 Eur for the slice. Food at the buffet is limited and almost every time was a line to get the food since only limited buffet locations were opened. Bars/Beverage packages - had a package and was limited information available during the booking of the cruise, it was just like you get unlimited water, coffee, DOC wine and aperitif anytime. I am a wine lover and when I saw DOC wine was assuming that I will get the good wine. It came as could get water only by glass, could not get even small bottle with me to the cabin, wine is only house wine one type of white wine and one type of red wine were available at the bars and buffet and 3 whites and 3 reds very poor quality were available in the fining room. Aperitifs are very low cost and quality. If I would know this a head of time I would not buy the package and would just pay for better quality of wine and would get water by bottle and so on. As they enroll everybody be costa club member, members get discount at the bar up to 25%. Excursions - the excursion desk is not helpful at all, they don't provide the full information on the tour. The tours are expensive, the transfer to Bremen cost 39 Eur. Service - pretty inconsistent. Casanova bar has a very friendly waiter but generally they are not great. They are also confused with all of the package choices and not helpful at all. Only good was the entertainment - plenty with good shows and variety selection of the evening entertainment at the multiple venues on the ship. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
This was our first cruise. We needed a cruise that fit in with pre-allocated holidays at work and also to discover somewhere new. The Western Mediterranean ports have mostly been visited on other, non cruising holidays, so we wanted the ... Read More
This was our first cruise. We needed a cruise that fit in with pre-allocated holidays at work and also to discover somewhere new. The Western Mediterranean ports have mostly been visited on other, non cruising holidays, so we wanted the Eastern Mediterranean and chose a cruise from Venice on Costa Luminosa. Some of the points highlighted in this review may seem trivial to seasoned cruisers but we had 101 questions before our cruise so hopefully this review may help others who are/were in the same situation as ourselves. To anyone like ourselves I would say "don't worry. A lot of things become self explanatory once on board" There are lots of variables when booking a cruise and I did some hefty research on sites like Cruise Critic. Some of the items we booked were merely a "fluke" like getting a drinks package included. We booked around 7 months in advance on the Costa website and chose a Premium Balcony cabin. This allowed us to choose the cabin we wanted and we opted for cabin 7260 which was mid-ship on the left hand side and had cabins above and below us to minimize the noise from bars, disco's, engines, theatre and the sundeck. As mentioned this also included the Brindiamo drinks package - more later. Also, by choosing this type of cabin we could specify preferences about meal times and we chose the first sitting (18:45) and specified a table for two in the upstairs dining room. My wife is on a Gluten Free diet so, a few days after booking, I telephoned Costa in Genoa and told them about the special request. We were advised that they could only guarantee gluten free food if we ate in the main dining room. They advised us not to eat in the buffet for this reason. We paid our deposit and I made a note to myself and paid the balance about 8 weeks in advance. Whilst the initial booking could be done online we could only pay the balance by telephone. Approximately 3 weeks before travel we received an email from Costa with boarding forms and luggage labels which we had to print out ourselves. We traveled from the UK to Venice by train and stayed the night before the cruise in a hotel in Mestre which is a few miles from Venice on the mainland. Our documentation from Costa said that boarding began at 14:00 so we headed from Mestre to Venice late morning and had a bite to eat. From Santa Lucia railway station in Venice it's a steady 25 minute walk to the cruise terminal. There's also a people mover which costs 1.50 Euro's and would reduce this transit time to about 12 minutes. Once at the port (at about 14:05) we handed our suitcases over and were given embarkation number 15. We proceeded to a waiting room and discovered that they were processing group number 12. We sat and waited for a short time before they called number 15. There were long queues but we seemed to move quickly. After checking in we had the obligatory pose for the camer-man and headed to the ship. It took exactly 1 hour from arriving at the terminal to getting to our cabin. The cabin was excellent. Plenty of room. A decent sized en-suite. Balcony with two chairs and a small table. Mini-Bar and a comfy bed. There was a selection of fruit and biscuits for us and a sign saying that they were gluten free (as we had told them). It was my wife's birthday on the day of boarding and there was a birthday card from the captain waiting for her in the cabin. On the bed were our Costa Cards, and some other information. At this point we discovered that people were allowed on-board from 11:45. So we had been killing time all morning waiting when we could have been on the ship 2-3 hours earlier. We had read many articles suggest things to do during the first few hours onboard. To put it mildly, we were overwhelmed. I think initially someone had suggested the pool. We didn't get this far until day 3 ! Each day a "Diary de Bordo" is delivered to your cabin. This shows navigation, weather and entertainment information and also information about shore excursions (where to meet and at what time etc). However, something that we almost missed was the "Welcome meeting" which was done at 15:30 in the Grand Bar Ellectra for English speaking guests. We found this very useful and would strongly suggest that any novice cruisers like ourselves seek this out on the first afternoon. We were advised that "English Speaking Guests" totaled 440 on this cruise. English speaking guests are those who don't communicate in the main languages used (French / German and Italian but not Russian). So included in this number were Swedish, Norwegian and Brazilian nationalities as well as British, Amercan and Canadians etc. I believe there was also a Russian host on board but ship announcements were not made in Russian. Whilst I am not privy to exact numbers I would estimate that the cruise consisted of 40% Italian, 25% German, 25% French and 10% split between other nationalities. It was rare to hear any other guest speak English on board. Most of the ships activities are on decks 2, 3 and 9. It's a beautiful ship. Very clean and well maintained. It was interesting to watch the officers do their inspections and pick up on the tiniest area that wasn't clean enough and tell staff to clean it. The Costa Card :- in our cabin was a Costa Card. This was our "passport" to the ship for the next week. It opened the cabin door and was used to obtain services on board. It was shown (and scanned) when leaving on shore excursions and likewise when returning to the ship. As our cabin included certain drinks we had to show it whenever ordering a drink. Each bar has a drinks menu. Next to each drink is a colour code representing the various drinks packages. I believe a grey dot represented a drink included in our package. Should we have ordered a drink that was not included in the package we would have been given a receipt and this amount debited to our room. Drinks on board generally ranged from 3 to 6 Euros. We subsequently discovered that our drinks package would have cost us 27 Euro's per day - that's between 5 and 9 drinks per day to make it worthwhile. We probably had about 5. Drinks that are included in your package convey no surcharge. However, anything not included has a 15% surcharge levied. Free water is available (by the glass) in the buffet area and pool area at the rear of the ship. Bottled water costs 1.70 Euro's (plus service charge) for 0.5 litres. One thing worth noting is that we were told that for environmental reasons all drinks are by the glass. When ordering a Pepsi it was poured from a 330ml can into a glass holding 250ml. What happened to the last bit I have no idea but we never saw them "recycle" a drink by pouring a bit from one can and the rest from another. The main dining seemed to be quieter (and smaller) on deck 3 rather than deck 2. Our waiter said the later sitting was the busiest. We found the food the be excellent. Yes, there is an Italian theme but also plenty of choices that are not just pasta. Each evening my wife was given a special "Gluten Free" menu which generally contain choices not available on the standard menu. Our waiter was slightly dour on the first day and we recalled some bad reviews with trepidation. However, we joked with him, talked to him and, by the end of the cruise felt that he was one of our best friends. A truly warm, genuine person. The cabin steward was also a very kind, warm person. Always smiling and kept the cabin in immaculate condition. When we got to the cabin on the first afternoon we could choose the time that would suit us best for it to be cleaned. We opted for the afternoon/evening as we would normally be having dinner. We had a very slight problem with a light not working and the cabin steward immediately stopped everything he was doing to fix it (it transpires that a previous guest had unplugged it) The bar staff were also great. Often remembering who arrived for drinks in what order and dealing with 3 people at once. On our subsequent feedback questionnaire to Costa we rated the ships officers quite badly as they hardly spoke and were miserable. However, without exception, the "normal" staff were incredibly attentive and cheerful. If you engage with them you would be treat like royalty. I received a free drink at the bar one day because, he said, " I had made him smile". Also, I had a daily ritual with one of the chefs at breakfast. Early in the cruise she was singing "You are my sunshine" as it was a beautiful sunny day. As the week progressed I asked her about the song of the day. As she normally was cooking omelets we had songs like "How do you like you eggs in the morning" and "Smile" though we changed the words a little from "Smile though your heart is aching" to "Smile though your eggs are breaking". Even though my wife was on a Gluten free diet we did use the buffet area on more than one occasion. My wife has an intolerance to wheat but if we are sensible we can work out what foods are likely to contain this substance. By 8am the buffet was busy. As early risers we were there at 7-7.30 and it was almsot deserted. The buffet restaurant opened about 11.30 for lunch. Usually at this time (until about midday) it wasn't that busy. However by 12:30 people were hunting for tables. There are four main serving areas. However there may be small variation with what's available at each one. For example, one may have carrots whilst another one may have the carrots swapped for Broccoli. Unless you are really picky and desperate there is certainly no need to visit more than one serving station. We only visited the buffet once in the evening and this was at 8pm and found it to be quiet. There is some repetition of food and some dishes (potato wedges appeared every night) In the main dining room you have an allocated table for evening meal but you are shown to a seat at Breakfast and Lunch which could be anywhere and generally only on deck 2 (the upstairs restaurant is only open on an evening). We had breakfast in the main dining room once and was bitterly disappointed. There is a small buffet area and you can also order one of a themed breakfast - so they had an American breakast, an English breakfast a Norwegian brekfast etc. We found, on the English breakfast that the bacon was like charcoal and the egg very "snotty". However for lunch and evening meal the food was spectacular. The portions are not huge but the menu is based on having 4 or 5 courses. We really enjoyed our meals and found them to well presented and very tasty. Dress code was varied. Each night there was a theme. Red & Black night / White night / Mask night. I would estimate that only 10% of guests actually took heed of this. People were having meals in shorts and t-shirts - even on gala night. The theatre has two showings. (I believe) at 19:30 if you have a late meal and 21:30 if you have an early sitting for dinner. Each show lasts 35-40 minutes. The first night was a magician who was "ok". Other nights we thoroughly enjoyed each show. One reviewer said "slapstick". We would vehemently disagree. Each announcement was made in Italian, French, German and English. Some people have said this was tedious. However we are an English couple sailing from Italy to the Greek islands. How lucky were we that they even took the time to speak English ? In our opinion - very ! Every member of staff was fluent in all the aforementioned languages. Also, we found it nice to be part of the minority. If, as an English couple, we wanted to be surrounded by English speaking people and visit a destination where everyone spoke English then we could have gone to Skegness. It was an eye-opener in our last port as a cruise ship with predominantly English speaking guests was also in port. Suddenly everywhere in town were British people and it spoilt what I would describe as the "exclusivity". We found the majority of other passengers to be miserable and very bad mannered. The staff would pass you and say "hello, Good morning". You would have been lucky to get a scowl from other guests. At the bar I would say " a cappuccino please". Many, many times I heard other nationalities just say "expresso" or "pepsi". No manners ! Needless to say that their bad manners persisted on shore excursions and meal times. We booked all of our shore excursions through Costa as we were unsure what would happen with self booked tours. This was, to us the worst part of our cruise. Generally, with fewer English speaking guests we shared our coach with other nationalities. French one day, Italian the next etc - however all announcements were multi-lingual Bari - Sassi de Matera We were in port for 6 hours but this tour took 5.5 hours. We were rushed with hardly any time for toilet stops. An audio/visual presentation was made in a cave. The tour guide cut in half way through say "got to go". We were given 30 minutes of free time at the end and told to meet "back here at 17:30". At 17:25 the tour guide took us back the coach, as she was in such a hurry, leaving some guests behind and a couple of these must have been in their 80's. Of course we were then delayed whilst she went back to find them... Keffalonia - Caves/Lake/Beach The visit to the beach was to "look at it" from 1000ft up a maintain. The caves and lake were good but very long queues for the lake (1 hour queue) Santorini - Oia and Fira Excellent tour guide. Excursion spoilt by very long wait to use the cable car. Queuing for 1 hour to use it. Worried about making the last tender back to the boat Mykonos- walking tour of Mykonos Waste of money. Tour guide took us on a 1 hour walk around Mykonos. "here's a windmill", "this is a shop", "that's a church". We discovered more in our own time that with him. Katakolon - Olympia We got a coach from Katakolon to Olympia with entrance included but no tour guide. We were disappointed by the short time we had there and also the lack of signage in Olympia telling you what things were. At the end of the cruise we were disappointed to leave. Whilst we didn't participate in many of the activities available time went by quickly - even our last day- at sea. We are now looking forward to our next cruise - but would like to try another company for comparison. Considering all of the negative reviews on Cruise Critic about Costa we were very impressed and they exceeded our expectations. I use an old adage "behavior breeds behavior". Treat the staff with courtesy and respect and they will treat you like royalty. The poor shore excursions and bad mannered, rude fellow travellers has stopped me rating this as 5* Even though we would like to try another cruise line we would not hesitate to book with Costa again. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
We have just arrived in Waremunde, Germany from a 7 day Fjord Cruise on Costa Favolosa. When we first considered Costa as part of our 6 month tour of Europe we were very hesitant. We had sailed three times previously on Costa and we ... Read More
We have just arrived in Waremunde, Germany from a 7 day Fjord Cruise on Costa Favolosa. When we first considered Costa as part of our 6 month tour of Europe we were very hesitant. We had sailed three times previously on Costa and we vowed never to sail Costa again. Money being the driving force for this trip, finalized our decision. Keeping in mind our previous experiences with Costa, coupled with their low review ratings, we decided to set sail with very low expectations. Much to our surprise, this trip exceeded our expectations in every area. I want to begin by acknowledging the Hotel Director, Ingrid Happ, Housekeeping Manager, Vincent Braganza and Cruise Director, Naim Ayub. What a fabulous team! From the minute we arrived at the port in Bergen Norway, these 3 professionls went above and beyond to ensure our embarkation was smooth and pleasant. After seeing these 3 in action, I had a gut feeling things were going to be okay. They were fabulous!! We ate in all the dining venues. The food was superb. We did not have one bad meal. The staff at the bars, dining room, lido deck and Chocolatier were amazing. The entertainment from Duo Fiesta, George and Jean Luc were phonomenal. Our room steward Yulia was the best. Special thanks to Victor, and most of all to Marife Rivera and Ron Kasiaro Purba the best bar staff in the cruise industry. The shows were fabulous! The entertainers hired for the shows in Hortensia Theater with the exception of Martin the Magician were top of the line. The animation team were energetic, fun and great! The Brindiamo Drink Package was included in with the price of our room. Although, the ship was full to capacity, we never had an issue getting drinks. In fact, we may have drank too much. Finally, the only sour note in this entire trip was our dining room server. She worked like a robot with no attention to detail or desire to please her guest. We gave her the benefit of the doubt but after a few nights we opted for the Lido Deck freesyyle dining. Overall it was a great cruise and has changed our opinion about future sailings with Costa. Read Less
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