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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
The cruise was chosen as part of travel package. I have cruises before, but this was the worst for the following reasons: - Lack of food choices and repetitive. They serve pasta and spaghetti with light sauce, lack of flavouring - ... Read More
The cruise was chosen as part of travel package. I have cruises before, but this was the worst for the following reasons: - Lack of food choices and repetitive. They serve pasta and spaghetti with light sauce, lack of flavouring - Entertainment all in Spanish (good for South American passengers) - Day of departure (must leave room by 8am) - Restaurants- can not chose where to sit and you get half hour slot to attend restaurant otherwise you will not enter. For instance, number 312 must attend dinner by 7-7:30pm. Furthermore, lido desk 9 all 5 restaurants serve same food - No English Channel on TV - You must pay tips at the end in American dollars, and must be on credit card. Coming from UK we only had debit card -Orange juice is waterly, and jo hot drink throughout the day apart from breakfast and afternoon tea at 4pm - Desk 2 is noisy and you hear music playing. It is annoying to hear at 11pm! Good: -Some islands were beautiful -We had nice guy who did the room -Gym - interior nice Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
Visiting unique ports of call like Madagascar and the Seychelles the Costa Victoria was fine. The staff on the ship worked very hard and managed well dealing with the incredibly variety of languages spoken by passengers from so many ... Read More
Visiting unique ports of call like Madagascar and the Seychelles the Costa Victoria was fine. The staff on the ship worked very hard and managed well dealing with the incredibly variety of languages spoken by passengers from so many different countries. Entertainment was first class and probably better or at least equal to the best on any of our previous cruises. The food supplied was very good but not outstanding with extra charges for things normally included on a cruise like ice cream (not even supplied with the desserts in the dining room) and pizzas ( on an Italian ship!!) As a European registered ship paying minimum EU wages it was consequently understaffed compared to some other cruise lines paying lower wages. This was evident in the dining room, bars and cabin care. No waiters or bar evident in the theatre either. Excursions (in such an impoverished part of the world) were very expensive but were generally very interesting and worthwhile. We suspect that staff would make extra efforts if the gratuities were not a compulsory automatic addition to the ship account. Another oddity was the daily debit of our credit card rather than the usual procedure of settling the bill at the end of the cruise. This made it difficult to dispute the bill or cancel a reserved excursion (if, for example! It became apparent that it required more physical ability than expected). However - we are confident that the totals at the end of the cruise were correct. The ship was in excellent condition and was constantly being varnished and painted. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
My travel agent finally found an affordable trip to the UAE. It all went downhill from there. The dining options were minimalistic. There was only 1 option for dining other than the buffet. I was on a special low-sodium diet. The meals ... Read More
My travel agent finally found an affordable trip to the UAE. It all went downhill from there. The dining options were minimalistic. There was only 1 option for dining other than the buffet. I was on a special low-sodium diet. The meals were plain and EXTREMELY bland. I don't think the chef had ever heard of chicken stock, and definitely had no concept of herbs or spices. It was an Italian style ship that didn't have basil for pizza margaritas. The salad dressing on the buffet was so watered down you could drink it. Hunting for options on the buffet was an adventure to say the least. There was only one carving station and it was always out of whatever it was carving. If you wanted food after 9pm, you had to pay for it, burgers, fries and pizza. Even room service . All of the entertainment was in Italian, Spanish or from the eighties maybe. The club was for teens. Bingo and karaoke were only 1 night . This was my 10th cruise and worst cruise ever. The patrons and staff were overall RUDE. I went on a Italian/English tour, the spoke Italian for the first 30 minutes or more. Even after bringing it to his attention (Aziz) it didn't get better. I voiced this to passenger liaison Eve. She was told by the tour desk manager Christian, that because I was gifted the tickets the morning of the tour, my opinion didn't matter. The reason because I didn't purchase the tickets and register them with my name. I have never been so insulted before in my life. I spoke with several other North American guests and they felt the same. Royal Caribbean is my only cruise line after this CRAPPY CRAPPY Carnival Costa Cruise. If you were giving out free cruises that offered a mega-suite I wouldn't take it. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Upon boarding there was no one available to greet our group, no greeter to welcome us (that was probably our first clue to disaster). I got to my room, it’s clean but had a very musty smell so I needed to open the balcony to air it out ... Read More
Upon boarding there was no one available to greet our group, no greeter to welcome us (that was probably our first clue to disaster). I got to my room, it’s clean but had a very musty smell so I needed to open the balcony to air it out as it had a strong stench. Beds hard as hell and unable to control the temperature in the room. There were no English channels on the television only AL-jerze new, no CSI, Barnaby Jones, Murder she wrote or Matlock. There were no activites for people who spoke English. I have never been in a room which did not have a clock, therefore I constantly had to call the front desk for the time or go to the hall by the steps, just so not to be late for my excursions. Speaking of the Excursions I selected easy tours but there was a lot more walking which did not allow me to take in the views. I take cruises to determine which places I liked the most and would revisit by land but I was not able to make a decision being on the Costa Mediterranean cruise. Announcements were all in Italian which made me make several calls to the operator, as I did not know if the message pertained to me as something I should know. Customer Service Personnel was outrageously, rude and rather disrespectful. Here are two examples: I was standing in line at the customer service desk waiting for help, the lady overlooked me and addressed a man behind me like I was not there, so yes, I spoke up and in Italian she asked the guy to wait. She never said sorry. Another, example again I went to customer service for so clarification about my bill, the young guy was not clear and very impatience, so I said to him I am not following what you’re saying as your explanation does not make sense. I said I didn’t feel like I was getting good customer service. He said he's giving excellent customer service and he don't understand. I said it is your job to ensure I understand he said oh well and went on to the next person. So, I waited for morning. Food: The food on the buffet was cold, under cooked, no flavoring or seasoning. The food in the Dining room was not much better. The waiters were very slow at serving dinner then wanted you to hurry up because you are now interfering with the next service. REALLY. You’re slow so I got to hurry. REALLY. Then there was no food available after 9 pm, this is the first cruise that food was not available during the evening and early morning hours unless it was purchased (hamburgers and pizza) which should have been available as part of the price of the cruise. I would understand aa separate price if it was a specialty restaurant but not for something that should be available. SO, since I’m diabetic I had to ensure I brought some snacks on board, so my when my sugars drop, I had something available to bring my sugars up (this is a real issue for people with Diabetes). Drink Package: my understanding was it unlimited bottle water, can soda and selected alcoholic beverage including mix drinks but the bar personnel said they could not give me a bottle of water but could pour the contents in a glass (therefore, I was getting 8 ounces instead of a whole bottle or 6 ounces instead of a can. So, I had to drink it then order another. I was told if I wanted a can or bottle, that I would have to pay for them. WHY? Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose this cruise because we happened to be going from Singapore to Rome. The price was outstanding, so despite the generally poor reviews, we tried Costa. Shazaam!...now we’re big Costa fans! The ship is good, but the crew is ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we happened to be going from Singapore to Rome. The price was outstanding, so despite the generally poor reviews, we tried Costa. Shazaam!...now we’re big Costa fans! The ship is good, but the crew is amazing. Costa (or at least the Fortuna) clearly has the secret sauce recipe for keeping its crew (apparently) happy and very highly effective. Here’s some specifics: I’m an early riser, so I see the crew going at it when the guests are generally not watching. Every morning at 0430, they were energetically cleaning some new corner of the ship that I never even thought of...ceilings, corners where no one ever goes, the disco ball, under imovable chairs... And it really looked like a whistle-while-you-work operation, not a begrudging surface wipe-down so they could get back to standing around. This crew was always working hard and behaving upbeat. It’s all members of the crew, to. Waiters, cleaners, pool attendants, front desk personel, chefs...It’s systematic on Fortuna. On most days, they washed our cabin windows...on the OUTSIDE! In my limited cruising experience on other lines, I’ve never seen that done before. Service (all areas) was highly professional and FAIR. Perhaps it’s the Costa compulsory pre-paid tips model, but the crew is not at all pandering or obsequious (like all other cruise lines). They know their operating orders, and they do them. Full stop. Everyone gets the same professional treatment, so sometimes no means no, but at least it’s the same answer for everyone. Embarking and debarking was smooth in every port. Now the ports were generally awful (remote, barren, industrial, totally uninteresting), but at least they were managed well by the crew. The ports you can research beforehand, so you know what you are buying. Arrival and departure was in exact agreement with the published schedule. The food is over-the-top excellent! Stick with the Italian fare, and you’re in for quite a treat. Each day was the food of a different region of Italy, explained on the menu. My wife and I do not eat pasta, so what, you may ask, did we so happily eat? All the awesome non-pasta Italian dishes, which is most of them! We’re not exactly Italian foodies, so we did not know what to expect. The reviews had us concerned it was going to be all pasta, all the time. But nothing could have been further from the truth. Every lunch and dinner was a truly wonderful experience. Fortuna 100% changed (for the better) our opinion and appreciation of Italian food. As an Italian cruise line, you’ll be travelling with lots of Italians, living their Italian way. What a happy atmosphere! All the great older Italian couples kissing, dancing, holding hands, cheering, speaking loudly with every part of their body...come get your Italy on! Having experienced various US and Asia cruisers before, these Italians were a very fresh breath of air. On the down-side, there wasn’t a good promenade deck. The track is always too windy, too sunny, or too full. The outer “promenade” on deck three is small and usually full of smokers (half crew). The hot tubs were awful...not nearly hot enough, yet always full. We tried them once, showered 5 times with soap and scrubbie, and never stuck our toe in again. There was no TV movie schedule, not even if you beg the hospitality desk. Most surprisingly, their espresso was highly disappointing. We tried it several times, expecting good Italian slap-in-face robustness, but instead got more of a poke-in-the-eye. The gym is also rather disappointing. It looks like a converted dance club. It’s odd shape and design makes most ofthe floor space unusable. That’s ok, we used Rex Theater for our yoga and cross-training, and that usually worked fine (at carefully chosen times). So ten cheers for Costa Fortuna, the fantastic crew, and it’s proud representation of (almost) all things Italy. We can’t wait for more Costa cruises! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
I chose this cruise because of the ports being visited and the low cost. The internet service was horrible, and when I complained and asked for a refund, I was told that it wouldn't be possible. They canceled two of our pre-booked ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the ports being visited and the low cost. The internet service was horrible, and when I complained and asked for a refund, I was told that it wouldn't be possible. They canceled two of our pre-booked shore excursions - one because it was on disembarkation day (hello - why was it even offered, and why did they let us book it?), and the other because there were not enough English speaking passengers. The next day; however, we were on a shore excursion with 47 English speaking passengers and 4 German passengers, so we had to listen to the whole thing in both languages. Why couldn't they have done that for us on the previous day? The entire cruise catered to the Italians, and it was tiresome to have to hear everything in 6 languages, not to mention that it was clear that they were joking and laughing with the Italian passengers and not translating what was happening to everyone else. They were very chintzy when it came to game prizes (one prize for the whole team, and it was always a thin little tote bag), and the only activities were one or two video quizzes and dance lessons. Bingo was expensive, only played twice, and only one game each time. The food was awful - obviously frozen and thawed, not cooked fresh, and the same old items every day in the buffet, and only 3 choices in the dining room. Water, anywhere but the dining room or buffet, was not free, and in the dining room it was only free for the Americans. Staff was often rude for the most part and didn't offer any accommodation for any complaints or problems. Because every port was an embarkation/debarkation port, the elevators near our room were closed down all afternoon, and then we had to listen to the muster drill more than once. Your credit card is billed in daily increments that never match the daily charges, though the total did appear to be correct. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
The Ship was amazing, we were well impressed with the Shows, the food was lovely and a good choice but it was never more than lukewarm which was a shame, the staff work so hard and are so friendly. We bought one of the middle drinks ... Read More
The Ship was amazing, we were well impressed with the Shows, the food was lovely and a good choice but it was never more than lukewarm which was a shame, the staff work so hard and are so friendly. We bought one of the middle drinks packages it and proved to be a godsend as the drinks were expensive. We did find it hard work getting back on the Ship after a trip. I also slipped up on deck 10 near the Lido Buffet and had to see the hospital doctor who's bill was €352.00 of which €100 was for a BANDAGE which is a bit extreme by any standards, really thought I would at least be able to use my EHIC as it was an accident onboard , this then spoilt my holiday as I had badly damaged my knee so was in a wheelchair for the 4 days out of 7 and unable to take the wheelchair on shore. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
A last minute purchase, at the urging of my wife I took the plunge (so to speak) and bought our 14 day Buenos Aires to Rio De Janeiro cruise. By the time I got to the actual purchase pickings were slim and I had to agree to have my cabin ... Read More
A last minute purchase, at the urging of my wife I took the plunge (so to speak) and bought our 14 day Buenos Aires to Rio De Janeiro cruise. By the time I got to the actual purchase pickings were slim and I had to agree to have my cabin selected by the Costa staff. I bought the tickets, and only a few days later got to sit down and read reviews of the Fascinosa. I actually told my wife "I'm prepared to eat the lost $2k, I made a mistake, sorry". But what with anticipation and Rio's carnival looming, she persuaded me to go anyway. One's memory tends to gloss over things later that were a big deal at the time, like the strong smell of excrement in the passageway outside our cabin at all times, The faulty toilet flush mechanism that failed 4 times during a 14 day cruise. Or the gritty feeling underfoot that forced me to demand our steward vacuum the carpet. I don't want this to become an encyclopedia but there is no way to pass on the experience without going into detail. The theatre hosted some splendid live productions, with truly gifted performers and a delightful repertoire. Marred by a self promoting "cruise director" who instructed the audience to give top marks for him. Taken tongue in cheek, this might be excusable but the relentless barrage of juvenile, racially toned "humor" had the audience too embarassed not to applaud. The restaurants were passable, portions were appropriate and well presente, service good. Shore excursions with Costa should be avoided in my opinion. Overpriced and "one size fits all" we were happy that we only signed up for one (Uruguay). Being new to cruising, perhaps I appear harsh but I am reporting what I saw. Alas time prevents me from continuing while things are fresh in my mind, but happily this cruise will eventually be forgotten. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose this cruise to extend our warm weather holiday and because the dates worked. We had just come off a 19 night Ft.Lauderdale - B.A. cruise on the Royal Princess plus a 2 day visit to Iguazu Falls. Your first ... Read More
We chose this cruise to extend our warm weather holiday and because the dates worked. We had just come off a 19 night Ft.Lauderdale - B.A. cruise on the Royal Princess plus a 2 day visit to Iguazu Falls. Your first impression starts at the cruise terminal check in which is disorganized. Once on the ship we were pleasantly surprised at the size of our premium balcony stateroom, but the balcony itself is small and the furniture is old,uncomfortable and soiled looking. We found out the next morning that the bathroom shower is poorly designed and the water leaks all over the floor because the shower curtain is too short. We pointed this out to our harried room steward who said he would have it replaced, but it never was. We used towels to soak up the leaking water every day for our 7 day cruise...how is this more efficient than fixing the shower? Our next disappointment was a the buffet restaurant which was chaos for breakfast and lunch. It is so poorly laid out that each meal turns into a free for all just to get your meal then another free for all to find a table.There seems to be a chronic shortage of seating which made us dread going up to the buffet. On sea days, when everyone is onboard the buffet situation is even worse, so we resorted to the dining room where it was marginally less chaotic for breakfast, but still unpleasant. We chose the early assigned seating for dinner in the dining room because they don’t offer open seating. Dinner was a relief because it was calm and collected and our waiter”Dino” was a Pro. The dinner menu’s were good as was the food quality, but beware that water is not included with dinner unless paid for i.e. bottled water. The wine prices on Costa are slightly less that other Cruise Lines i.e. a bottle of Chianti was $25 whereas the cheapest red wine on a Princess was $32. Aside from our balcony, which was never cleaned, the general condition of the ship was good. The decor could be described as “gaudy” The fitness centre had an adequate number of machines (some defective) but disinfecting wipes were not provided. There is a good sauna in the fitness center’s change room which was a welcome inclusion We usually cruise on Celebrity,Holland America and Princess, so if you are used to any of these lines you will be in for a culture shock. If you can get over it (as we did) you willappreciate the diversity of entertainment which is quite good on Costa, with many lounges,a very large theatre with excellent shows and a nightclub with good bands and dancing every night. Our itinerary along the Brazilian coast involved 3 stops in small ports that requiredtendering for each (one being 1/2 hour in each direction) English is not common on shoreso our general routine was walking around town,a bit of shopping then wifi and a drink allaccomplished with sign language. We both agreed that we would not sail on Costa again, which is a shame, because we felt the staff all worked hard,and the entertainment was good,but they could not make up for the buffet chaos,understaffing,poor ship design, and poor management. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
We were looking for a week of winter sun in February and chose Costa because of the itinerary, and location. We made our own travel arrangements and flew to Dubai on Emirates, and with a short transfer, we were at the port within an ... Read More
We were looking for a week of winter sun in February and chose Costa because of the itinerary, and location. We made our own travel arrangements and flew to Dubai on Emirates, and with a short transfer, we were at the port within an hour of landing. Embarkation was quick and efficient and our luggage was delivered to our cabin quickly. The ship was clean, all the crew we met were polite, and service was excellent. The other travellers were a diverse group from many different countries. Dining : We ate in the main dining room every night, the food was very good ( despite some criticisms I'd read before we travelled ) fresh pasta, wonderful mozzarella - made fresh on the ship - and well cooked and prepared meat dishes. Our server Emmanuel was polite and courteous. We had the Piu Gusto drinks package which included house wine with our meals and this was constantly topped up without us needing to ask, as was water. Entertainment : We did a morning back stage tour of the ship that was very interesting and well worth doing. The shows were of a high standard, and very enjoyable. There was music in every bar - and there were plenty of bars...and dancing, if thats your thing. Excursions : We didnt do any of the official tours so I cant comment, though we had no problem finding our own way round Muscat, and Abu Dhabi, visiting the Grand Mosque and the heritage village using local cabs. We also spent a day at a hotel pool in Abu Dhabi Saadiyat beach which ws good value and lovely. We would definitely travel with Costa again. Read Less
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