Sail Date: September 2018
My wife and I had cabin 1062. Right next to suites in the middle of the 10 deck. We had carts rolling around our ceiling at various times day and night. Except for a few meals, the food was average at best. The staff was often unprepared ... Read More
My wife and I had cabin 1062. Right next to suites in the middle of the 10 deck. We had carts rolling around our ceiling at various times day and night. Except for a few meals, the food was average at best. The staff was often unprepared and/or poorly trained. We had a virus that ran through the ship. The medical staff was wonderful. The ship staff closed deck games for hours on days at sea. The entertainment was disappointing. The big song and dance shows were nonsensical and contained music that was unfamiliar to all. The wait time were unacceptable. 15 minutes at dinner, 2 hours to clear the ship at port and 39 to 45 minutes waiting to board tenders. Our room steward, Rosen was fantastic. The debarkation process was the best we’ve had. There’s really too much to mention. I won’t sail RCI again in the future. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Personal background - Retired traveling with my wife on 24th RCL cruise and 44th cruise overall. We were asked to join our long time friends on their 1st European trip. We are Diamond +. We love cruising! ---- we like seeing the world ... Read More
Personal background - Retired traveling with my wife on 24th RCL cruise and 44th cruise overall. We were asked to join our long time friends on their 1st European trip. We are Diamond +. We love cruising! ---- we like seeing the world without multiple hotels and flights from place to place. Don't read another word if you must eat your meals in a specialty restaurant, cruise in a suite or have your own tour van and driver waiting for you at every port. We love and respect you guys but that isn't who we are. This review is intended for the cruisers that might want to be bold and venture out on their own and save some money in the process. --- Here we go! Arrived in Rome by air one day early (so that our friends could see some of Rome). We took the train into Roma - Termini. The option here is local (8 euros with one train change) or express (14 euros direct with no stops). We took the local - take the express! too much hassle to move bags to the other platform. Stayed in pleasant B&B within two blocks of station. They had our rooms ready at 10am. Took Metro to Colosseum for 1.5 euros. Trevi Fountain on Metro for another 1.5 euros. We purchased Vatican Museum tickets from home on Vatican site cheaper than travel agents and used them on our return to Rome after the cruise. Day 1 Rome cruise Departure - took train to Civittavecchia (Rome's Port) - 5.10 euros. Local bus at port train station was 2 euros to cruise port. Cruise bus picks up at cruise port entrance for FREE ride to ship. Check in - very fast and efficient before noon ON BOARD! Cabin ready before 1PM - 3056 port side ocean view - we like to see the water but don't need a balcony. Windjammer open for lunch but notice cruisers can serve themselves!!!!! Typical Windjammer fair - good selection. Dinner MDR table with our friends. Day 2 Messina/Taromina - Go to Taromina if you have never seen it. Can get train from port to base of mountain and then local bus to Taromina short distance. Walk through town and reverse travel back to Messina but leave early on return to avoid crowd departure. We had already been there so we walked through Messina to Catholic chapel overlooking town but also stopped at noon in front of the mechanical clock tower for 15 minute show. BOUGHT whole Napoli Pizza for 1.50 euros! - fed all four of us! Best Pizza of whole trip!!!!!! Day 3 at sea - spent half of the day in the Solarium. The hot tub jets WERE WORKING!!! Day 4 Athens - Hard/windy rain but three of us walk to train station for 1.20 euro (senior discount over 65 yrs old) ride from port to downtown Athens. Watched Honor Guard at Parliament high step with pom poms on the shoes. Walked to Pantheon (free entry on this date due to national holiday) past Hadrian's Arch. Returned to ship on train for same price. This is when we heard several passengers were still on board with NORVO symptoms. Look it up and then go WASH YOUR HANDS!!!! The crew began cleaning/disinfecting all surfaces being touched. One of our group was now down and confined to their cabin. More reports came in as the numbers rose! Extreme measures are now in place -- rails wiped every half hour - even the railings into the hot tubs. Food is now served by staff in Windjammer!!!!! V-Bags are out all over the ship! First we hear 50 then 100. The Captain admits there is a NORVO outbreak and announces the highest level of CDC response (more than 200 cases) and the war is on!!! Day 5 Mykonos - Great stop with wonderful easy walking streets and alleys. We were tendered into port and had a nice lunch while shopping. On our return to the ship our second friend begins to have symptoms. For those who have never experienced this travelers virus. It hits you fast and hard. Its all hands on deck cleaning. Even the ships officers are behind the Windjammer serving line helping out. Day 6 Rhodes - Walked to the Museum of the Crusaders and have a fantastic experience walking through the hospital where so many men from all over Europe gathered during the crusades to heal or die of their wounds or sickness. It would be a real life history lesson for anyone. We WILL BE BACK!!! Back on board, our friends are recovering and get released from cabin restriction at midnight. Day 7 Santorini - Catch 1st tender off the ship to get early gondola ride up the cliffside to the white washed town with the blue domes. Beautiful views and very picturesque. Another island that we would return to see again. Our friends join us in town in the late morning. My wife and I NEVER got sick and our friends were completely recovered but the other cruisers were still having issues. Day 8 - At Sea - Another day at the Solarium and more Trivia challenges. Day 9 - Naples - The port authority delay everyone from departing from the ship for more than 2 hours. We think it was because of their concern over the Norvo outbreak but we were never told why. The crew is exhausted but the sick cruisers are almost all well again as is our foursome. We had already been to Pompeii which you can do on your own by simply walking or taking the tram over to the train station. The cost is less than 8 euros and a short walk to the ruins where you can hire you own guide at the entrance. You can negotiate the price. Stay at least two/three hours, have lunch and return to the train. We took the same train to the Herculaneum ruins closer to Naples and had another 8 euro pizza for lunch. Retuning to the ship was an even faster express train and a walk down Naples shopping street back to the port. Day 10 - Departure for Rome - Again, very efficient, same bus rides to the train station in Civitavecchia and back into Rome for our Vatican Tour using the 1.5 euro Metro again. Day 11 - We get up early and take the short walk back to Termini for the EXPRESS train direct to the airport. We NEVER took a ship's excursion, got into a taxi, got pick pocketed or got sick eating the local fare or drinking the local brew. Access to restrooms are either public or as simple as a wonderful 1.50 euro pastry purchase at a local café. The Jewel of the Seas did a fantastic job and we would gladly cruise again with this Captain, this crew and this ship. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
Just returned home from Italy and Greece cruise on Jewel of the Seas Royal Caribbean. The crew was totally awesome but the ship and excursions left a lot to be desired. Upon arriving into our stateroom, a plate of strawberries had been ... Read More
Just returned home from Italy and Greece cruise on Jewel of the Seas Royal Caribbean. The crew was totally awesome but the ship and excursions left a lot to be desired. Upon arriving into our stateroom, a plate of strawberries had been left in the refrigerator from the previous cruise. The refrigerator didn't work and the strawberries had literally an inch of furry mold growing on them. We tried to overlook this due to knowing how overworked the crew is but that was just the beginning. Norovirus struck on the 2nd day and over 800 people were affected, including myself and missed my Athens Greece excursion. It took over 3 days to feel up to eating or going on the remainder scheduled and paid excursions. Due to the Norovirus, the ship was 2 hours late being cleared at the next port and our 10 hour excursion was reduced to less than 8. Our tour was rushed and inadequate because of this delay and no refund or compensation was even offered. I would not recommend Royal Caribbean. They are high priced and not worth the extra money. I will stick with Carnival because they are reasonably priced and much better quality. The ship excursions are too expensive, overbooked and too crowded to enjoy the places being visited. We had booked private taxi tours through Trip Advisor for half the price and was so much better and personalized making the port visits much more enjoyable. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
We took this cruise with two other couples. We’ve been friends for many years and 5 out of the 6 of us were all 60 in the same school year, which RCI were informed about. The Jewel is in good shape and is a very nice ship. My wife ... Read More
We took this cruise with two other couples. We’ve been friends for many years and 5 out of the 6 of us were all 60 in the same school year, which RCI were informed about. The Jewel is in good shape and is a very nice ship. My wife and I are dancers (ballroom and Latin) so we very very happy with the variety of live music. It’s just a shame that RCI don’t really cater for people who want to dance and can dance. The Centrum is a lovely venue, but why oh why is there so much furniture encroaching onto the floor area? The Safari Lounge could be a lovely venue too, but it’s cold (temperature) and cold (atmosphere) plus and just like the Centrum, there are tables and chairs on the dance floor! The cabin (Balcony, deck 8) was a reasonable size, but the smallest bathroom I’ve ever seen on a cruise ship! One of the highlights of cruising should be food and service. This where I think RCI have gone seriously downhill since our last cruise with them in 2012. The service was inconsistent at best, but generally quite poor. We were anytime dining, and we booked a table for the first night. On arrival, it was chaotic. Excuses like “it’s the first night” don’t wash with me. It maybe the first night of our cruise, but for them it’s just another night. The service at our table was really bad. Everything took forever, our waitress was basically incompetent, she tried to serve the soup twice! The next day, I spoke to the M.D. to express our dissatisfaction, so he assigned us to a different table. We also had issues with the menu as one couple do not eat meat or seafood, which really limited their options on the first night. We got a great table, served by Teeluk and Ferdinand who were great, so we requested that table for the rest of the cruise. The hostess at the desk wasn’t happy, so because of the issues experienced, the M.D. intervened and we were assigned the same table. He also brought the folllowing nights menu at the end of each meal so our friends would know if there was anything they could have or was there going to be a special order. Part of the problem is that RCIs menus are very unimaginative, there are certain items that are on every night, but not items that are either that good or things you’d want more than once. The food is average at best, presentation non-existent. At the start of every cruise I make a point of telling my waiter that I do not want hot food served on cold plates. We got plates that were too hot to touch, but the food was generally lukewarm. Dishes were also inconsistent. If two people order the same dish you would expect them to be presented in an identical way, but no, different vegetables, different quantities, just not good enough! We had breakfast and lunch in the Windjammer. The big plus was that it was never overcrowded. The choices, especially the lunchtime salads, never varied, and the food was generally unimaginative. There never seemed to be enough staff around to clear tables. The ship experienced a Novo outbreak, so food in the Windjammer was served to us. Shouldn’t be a problem, but again insufficient and inexperienced staff to cope. The Jewel has a cafe called latitudes. There is insufficient seating, but even worse, the drinks are served in paper cups, like some cheap takeaway, which is basically what it is. However, once we made our feelings known, we were told that they do have proper cups, but as there’s no kitchen, they prefer not to tell anyone! I could go on, but I think those reading this will have got the message! We haven’t sailed with RCI since 2012, preferring Celebrity. Back then the difference between them was small, but not now. The gap between them is enormous and it is unlikely that we will ever book another cruise with RCI Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
Recommended by a friend. Day one presented a sewage smell in the hallway to our cabin an persisted for 2 more days. We went to the windjammer for lunch and immediately noticed the use of antibacterial gel was not being enforced at the ... Read More
Recommended by a friend. Day one presented a sewage smell in the hallway to our cabin an persisted for 2 more days. We went to the windjammer for lunch and immediately noticed the use of antibacterial gel was not being enforced at the entrance of the dining room. This would later result in a norovirus breakout on the ship which the crew kept under wraps from passengers. Rumours from honest crew members estimated approximately 200 effected. Only warning made by cruise activity director was “ we have had a few incidents of GI, please wash your hands. So we continually saw passengers bypass anti bacterial gel, which could only mean they weren’t taking the issue seriously. If we were told that 200 individuals were affected. I think passengers would of taken the warnings more seriously. I am comparing the ship to our only cruise which was on Norwegian so I found the boarding very boring. They could of at least played music to get passengers excited.Lucky staff were helpful and pleasant. Excursions were very good. Food was very good but every time we ate we were afraid of the outcome. We attended the specialty restaurants more often to avoid the high traffic dining areas. As we left this morning we were left wondering if staff were going to place warnings or notes to notify new passengers of what occurred on previous cruise. My guess is the high ranking staff will keep it hush hush. I wonder now if the cruise before us had the same issue. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
This was my 3rd Royal Caribbean Cruise. Ports were fine. Excursions were over priced and mostly brought us to shop. Too little time for the ruins etc. Food was Mediocre at best. Entertainment was decent. Cabin was good. The ship ... Read More
This was my 3rd Royal Caribbean Cruise. Ports were fine. Excursions were over priced and mostly brought us to shop. Too little time for the ruins etc. Food was Mediocre at best. Entertainment was decent. Cabin was good. The ship didn’t have as much upkeep in all areas as most I’ve been on. Most of the staff were great. The embarkation and disembarkation were very smooth, at one point I lost my C pass card, and it was no problem getting back onboard As long as you have a photo ID, which I had.. I definitely recommend a card holder lanyard. On one of the at sea days, we were on the edge of the storm, which lasted approximately nine hours, and the captain did not address the passengers which I felt he should have to let us know everything was going to be all right. More than half of the ship was sick and they were handing out motion sickness pills and drained the pools. The next day we found out the waves or 10 m which is approximately 32 feet. If you take a Greek Isles cruise, make sure you bring some euro for restrooms and places that don’t except Visa or MasterCard. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
We are diamond members in RCCL and chose this cruise for the ports visited at a time of year when the Med is less crowded,has a beautiful temperature of between 25-30°C and there are few children on board. We had booked flight and ... Read More
We are diamond members in RCCL and chose this cruise for the ports visited at a time of year when the Med is less crowded,has a beautiful temperature of between 25-30°C and there are few children on board. We had booked flight and transport to the ship through RCCL. Due to await at the airport for other passengers and then having to pick up other passengers from a coach that had broken down on the motorway, we didn’t board the ship until lifeboat drill was in process! A bit late. Our cabin on deck 9 was very quiet and the balcony was a good size. A little walk to the lifts but good exercise. The main disappointment for us on this cruise was that the outside eating area by the windjammer was closed for most of the cruise. This was due to maintenance. We felt that RCCL should have informed travel agents about this. Not a problem for most on the cruise maybe but living in Norway where eating outside at this time of year is impossible this is an important factor for us when choosing a ship. The anytime dining worked very well and lunch taken in the dining room with part buffet saved time and gave a good choice. At all times there seemed to be sunbeds available on deck in many different ares of the ship enabling one to find sun or shade, music or quiet. This we really appreciated after some other ships. We did not attend every performance in the theatre but we particularly enjoyed the tango dancers from Brasil and the Danish magician which were excellent. In ports we took organised trips or did our own thing. In Naples, a city we had visitef many times before, we went on a street food walking tour. This we booked on line. There were only10 in the group and we saw local food being made in small speciality shops in the narrow street of the old town. Something different to do if you have been to a port several times. Take water as there is no drink provided. Overall we enjoyed this cruise on a very friendly ship where it was easy to meet people as there always seemed to be something going on around the ship to involve the passengers. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
This was our third cruise, second with RC (Alaska was first). Aside from the challenge of getting to Civitavecchia from Rome, and navigating the port via shuttle, embarkation was a breeze. Ship: Good staff and relatively nice ... Read More
This was our third cruise, second with RC (Alaska was first). Aside from the challenge of getting to Civitavecchia from Rome, and navigating the port via shuttle, embarkation was a breeze. Ship: Good staff and relatively nice experience aboard ship. After the second cruise on this class ship (Rhapsody and Jewel) I think I am done with that ship/line. The entertainment was pretty good. The room is what one would expect from a cruise ship in this class- nice but small, less posh than other cruise lines. This line is great for families- less overtly drunken behaviour, good programming for the kids. Dining: the food in the buffet was mediocre at best, so we did most dinners in the upcharged restaurants or the typical dinner seating. That food got monotonous even after a few days so then we tried to eat off ship as much as possible. The windjammer buffet was pretty mediocre. Service onboard was exceptional in all areas we experienced. We tended to avoid many of the activities as we enjoyed just sitting on our rear facing deck and watching the stars. Plus, many early excursions meant we turned in relatively early. Ports and Shore excursions: We often wished we had just a little more time in each port, and what I really object to are the excursions, which seem to be VERY overpriced shopping trips. Our 9.5 hour Pompeii trip left us 55 minutes in Pompeii, but lots of time for shopping. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
This was our 2nd cruise, we are a party of four adults. We thoroughly enjoyed our time and met some great people. Our cabin on the 7th deck was spotlessly clean and the towels were changed twice a day. We enjoyed our breakfasts in the ... Read More
This was our 2nd cruise, we are a party of four adults. We thoroughly enjoyed our time and met some great people. Our cabin on the 7th deck was spotlessly clean and the towels were changed twice a day. We enjoyed our breakfasts in the Windjammer restaurant - loads of choice, great quality and variety and especially loved the food in the Tide Restaurant on an evening. Lots of first class entertainment on an evening with a full programme and choice through the day. The crew and officers were, without exception, very polite, helpful and friendly. The real "Jewel" is undoubtedly the staff. Fantastic. We would like to say a big hello and thank you to Sedrick and Ji, Tide Restaurant, Ashley, Mona and Pedro, Latte-tudes Bar and a big hug to the lovely Florence in Housekeeping. You guys went above and beyond to make us feel welcome and deserve a special mention. Thank you with our compliments. We thoroughly recommend this cruise, try and enjoy. A deserved 5* rating. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose this cruise because it was Western Med. We hadn't visited 5 of the stops, so the itinerary suited us. The passengers were largely American, only about 300 English but this wasn't a problem. The cabin with balcony was ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was Western Med. We hadn't visited 5 of the stops, so the itinerary suited us. The passengers were largely American, only about 300 English but this wasn't a problem. The cabin with balcony was lovely, very quiet and beautifully looked after by our cabin attendant. Iglu cruises organised our holiday and they were very helpful . We had a free AI premium drink package free with our booking and drinks were very expensive, so this was a bonus. It included all cocktails, beer, wine, bottled water, and premium coffees and teas. Breakfast was good, buffet style in the Windjammer as was lunch, and we ate our supper in Tides with waiter service. There was a pizza counter by the pool and desserts and homemade biscuits in the specialty coffee bar. Entertainment tended to be a bit raucous for us, but obviously most people enjoyed it. There as some nice music in the Centrum lounge in the evenings and shows twice a night in the theatre which we did not attend. The bad things were the decks and open air restaurant floors needed a good scrub and the tables were not cleared or wiped between use. Given the emphasis the ship puts on hygiene, I was surprised at this. Other areas were spotless. Food in Tides was spectacular and beautifully served. We floundered when we first embarked, couldn't find places and didn't understand procedures. Our cases took 5 hours to get to our cabin, which wss unsettling. Most people were seasoned cruisers and more laid back about keeping time. I felt I was on a moving platform for the first few days trying to keep times! The Windjammer was a free for all with the children running about. I didn't like the plastic plates particularly when they were warmed! I felt the shore excursions were overpriced and unorganized and wished I hadn't booked them. Lastly I objected to being taken to the airport 6 hours early. There was no RC rep to meet us. Once we'd left the ship we were obviously on our own! Read Less
Jewel of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.3
Dining 3.0 3.9
Entertainment 3.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.1
Family 4.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 3.0 3.5
Service 5.0 4.4
Value For Money 3.0 4.0
Rates 4.0 4.2

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