Sail Date: May 2019
I wanted to go to the Greek Islands, specifically Santorini and Rhodes, I did a 18 day cruise on RC Radiance of the Seas the year before and although it was old, the food and entertainment were good. On Jewel of the Seas, there were no ... Read More
I wanted to go to the Greek Islands, specifically Santorini and Rhodes, I did a 18 day cruise on RC Radiance of the Seas the year before and although it was old, the food and entertainment were good. On Jewel of the Seas, there were no dance lessons, the food was way below standard for a cruise ship and the staff and cabins left a lot to be desired. Even the Americans on board were complaining about the food and staff. The cover band was amazing though, really enjoyed the main band in the Atrium, a couple of the shows were also very entertaining. The fruit was all very poor quality and not even ripe, the desserts at the buffet were just mainly baked cakes, that everyone had to cut themselves and left them looking very unappetising, they were crumbled all over the plate. The cakes seemed to be the same most nights, no cheesecake or other alternatives. The service in the dining room was so slow that we opted to go to the buffet most nights, this is a first for me as I always enjoy dining in the Dining Rooms. This is the first time in my many cruises that I have not tipped the waiter and his attendant. I did speak to a couple of the officers, but they seemed less than interested in anything I had to say. If you want to do a cruise anywhere, I would suggest you give the Jewel of the Seas a wide Berth.2 weeks earlier, I did a MSC Cruise on the Bellissima for half the price and thoroughly enjoyed it. Looking forward to going back on the Bellissima in the near future. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
We picked this cruise for the Itinerary, time of year and our past successful cruises on RC. Unfortunately, this was our third straight cruise on this RC class ship and, perhaps, at no fault of RC, the cruise experience was fairly “just ... Read More
We picked this cruise for the Itinerary, time of year and our past successful cruises on RC. Unfortunately, this was our third straight cruise on this RC class ship and, perhaps, at no fault of RC, the cruise experience was fairly “just OK”. Everything going on on the ship including the ship layout just got way too familiar and, consequently, boring. So, I’ll try to fashion this review for those who have no to little experience either with RC or crusing. PROS. 1. RC provides a very good cruise experience per dollar. They are very competently run and, in my opinion, is as good as any of the mass market (or lower cost) cruises. 2. Service. Very good. No complaints. The cabin attendant was good and most all of the wait staff were also very good. Excursion staff at the desk were ok as well as the front desk. Check in, like pretty much all cruise lines, is smoothly run like clockwork. 3. Ship. The condition of the ship was very good as well. Although the ship is coming on 15 years old, everything looked in excellent or recently refurbished condition. Carpets looked newish and clean and all furniture was also in good condition. The cabin and bathroom were also in very good condition although there was a little rust and corrosion at the shower door. Cons. 1. Food. We took most of our meals in the buffet restaurant. So, perhaps it is unfair to say that the food was mediocre. The choice was wide and varied, but on this 11-night Cruise, I found it repetitive, sometimes cold, and meats hard and over cooked due to sitting there for a while. Coffee was often cold or like warm. The desserts were also pretty disappointing. Too many mousse’s which pretty much tasted like whipped sugar. We did go to the sit down restaurant twice and the Izumi specialty restaurant once. The problem I had with the sitdown restaurant is that the portions were really small. I’m no food hog, but four measly shrimp is poor in your “jumbo shrimp” dish is pretty poor. Sure you can ask for seconds, but who wants to come off as a food hog. As for Izumi, we ordered five sushi dishes and four were below mediocre. 2. Onboard shopping. The shop was small, limited merchandise. The jewelry shop was much larger, but the prices were outrageous. Example: my Citizens watch that I bought online last year for about $175 was being sold — same watch — on ship for about $500. Why is onboard shopping an issue? Well, it can get a little boring on a long cruise and a nice diversion is shopping. But, with extremely limited merchandise, it was a bust. Wake up RC, a captive audience and opportunity lost. 3. Onboard live shows. I suppose due to budget and cost, lost are the days of onboard performers and mini Broadway type shows. Rather, the live shows are made up of contract one night stand comedians, singers, etc. They come onboard at one port of call, do their show and get off at the next port. The performers were OK, but it would be nice to see some production type shows. Also, the lounge performers were really bad. 4. Shore excursions. These were fairly limited in selection. I suppose, as a modestly experienced cruiser — 8 cruises — I should know and expect that cruise sightseeing is all about in and out. Get into the port and off the ship by 8 or 9 am and back on board by 4:30 and on to the next port of call. That leaves virtually no time to do any in depth sight seeing. Is RC different or worse than any other cruiseline’s offerings? Likely no. But, new cruisers, be forewarned. 5. Port of call onboard information. This is the first cruise I’ve been on where the ship provided virtually no information on the various ports of call enroute to the destinations. Cruises in the past had the cruise director providing tips on what to see and do and shopping tips. Nothing. I’m not expecting cultural lectures on the history and culture of the destinations, although that would be nice. But a little something about what to expect. Even if it was pre-recorded. All we got was daily babbling about trivia — what minor celebrity had a birthday that day — or some inane joke of the day. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Chose this cruise because of dates and thought we would try something new. Reviews were good. We travel Celebrity as a rule. Use TAs as transportation Extremely disappointed in this ship. Food was absolutely inedible. First ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of dates and thought we would try something new. Reviews were good. We travel Celebrity as a rule. Use TAs as transportation Extremely disappointed in this ship. Food was absolutely inedible. First night in Giovanni’s ordered filet medium well.. was medium rare and took 25 minutes for another. Too late. Tho the shrimp was good Chops Ok MDR service poor except for one evening. One night we sat for 20 minutes and finally asked for a server. Food poor. Buffet the same. Fresh Vegetables looking worse for wear within days of sailing. Jello for dessert! Public areas not clean. Restrooms dirty. Paper on floor. Men’s restroom not clean around toilets. We spoke with housekeeping but to no avail. The “canned” air in cabins debilitating in spite of our balcony. Too much smoking...can’t believe people allowed to smoke INSIDE the casino On a positive note...liked layout of the ship. The crew was fabulous! They truly cared about their passengers. They did a nice happy hour for diamond etc every night. Nice to have decent coffee in diamond club. Our cabin steward was terrific. Our cabin was nice. Officers were disengaged. When I saw an officer and spoke to him or her I usually got little or no response I’m sorry to say it was a terrible experience. We shall never use RCL again. We are back To Celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We choose to sail sail on the Jewel for the itinerary and the fact that we were on the ship in 2016 and enjoyed ourselves. Our last cruise was on the Freedom of the seas and the food was terrible. We then decided to switch our already ... Read More
We choose to sail sail on the Jewel for the itinerary and the fact that we were on the ship in 2016 and enjoyed ourselves. Our last cruise was on the Freedom of the seas and the food was terrible. We then decided to switch our already planned cruise from the Navigator to Jewel for the reliability. The food: Here is the trick to Royal Caribbean ships. The my time dining is on the same level as the room service level. The food is not going to be as good as the set time dining because they are overwhelmed and overworked. Unfortunately since it was planned last minute, we were stuck on the my time level. There was only one main dining dinner I thought was good. It was when they moved us to the main level because there was cancellations. Otherwise the food this time around was just for survival. The Service: “There is nothing we can do.” was the theme of this ship. There was never enough staff. We were always waiting in huge long lines. We talked with other couples that were on the Jewel before and they also noticed the change. Other Problems: We choose a 9 night sailing date, so the average age of the ship was 60. Normally we love the lack of children, but every one was coughing and sneezing by day five. We had to leave the movie theater twice because of this. Also, at buffets we had to redo our plates multiple times due to careless guests. I guess this really isn’t the ships fault, but it’s something to note. They also had a problem checking our luggage at the end of our trip. We missed our flight as well as most people who had early flights. They said it was because they didn’t have enough custom people checking luggage’s. Every one was delayed by three hours. Staff didn’t seem to care. What we liked: pool in the solarium was easy to get a chair nearby. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
We have lots of happy memories of previous cruises with Royal Carribean from a few years ago, so we decided to treat ourselves and travel for New Years Eve to the islands. Well...we were so disappointed, RC are nothing like they used to ... Read More
We have lots of happy memories of previous cruises with Royal Carribean from a few years ago, so we decided to treat ourselves and travel for New Years Eve to the islands. Well...we were so disappointed, RC are nothing like they used to be! If you go on this ship, get ready to pay extra for EVERYTHING, use of the gym, room service, some yoga classes, movies on the TV, you even have to sign up for a 1 day internet package so you can print the boarding passes for your flight...yep, now that's unacceptable! The passengers who purchased wi-fi for the week only managed to use it 60% of the time, so don't waste your money. Food was great in the dining room, the windjammer could use a thorough cleaning though, tables were always sticky and the choice of food never varied very much each day, although there was plenty of it. Staff don't seem particularly happy, you get the occasional happy person, but not like they used to be. Overall the ship needs a makeover, damaged furniture needs attention, torn carpets in the hallway, etc....and the ever constant smell of sewage, the staff said "oh you won't notice it when we are sailing" not my idea of a vacation! The a la carte restuarants have waiters constantly harassing passengers around the ship to make reservations, another extra fee....we did sign up the murder mystery dinner in the Italian restuarant.. the plot was so cheesy & lame but more surprisingly, italian food was'nt served, steak was offered! Lastly...do not go on the St Martin Beach rendevous excursion, they take you to a small beach in the center of town, a packed, tiny area in the flight path of the airport so the noise is unbelievable, nothing relaxing about that! A couple of good things though...the evening game shows were hysterical and the weather was perfect...so that made up for it! Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
Granted, we really have enjoyed our past Carnival cruises. Our friends encouraged us to upgrade out lives going Royal our next time, Dec 18, out of San Juan A MAJOR DISAPPOINTMENT! Our room had worn furniture,,dust etc. We felt ... Read More
Granted, we really have enjoyed our past Carnival cruises. Our friends encouraged us to upgrade out lives going Royal our next time, Dec 18, out of San Juan A MAJOR DISAPPOINTMENT! Our room had worn furniture,,dust etc. We felt like we were really on an outdated ship (maybe it is) While we earned credit for another cruise,,we are taking a short 4 day to maximize the credit, and minimize out cost. I would think more than twice about not only this ship, but maybe Royal in general. It sure wasn't a "fun" ship. The late leaving out of San Juan gave us the day to enjoy the old city. That was appreciated as well as a first relaxing, self guided tour of the old city. Next trip to San Juan, I"m going to add a day for some in island times, more sights etc Because of the staggered arrivals, boarding wasn't bad. Pretty fast in fact! That was a positive for us. As in the Bachelor series, that first impression rose does not go to this ship or even Royal out book. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
We cruised out of San Juan December 1 2018. We are experienced cruisers and have cruised many different lines. The specialty restaurants are a huge disappointment. Our experience on the Jewel was by far the worse of any main line. We went ... Read More
We cruised out of San Juan December 1 2018. We are experienced cruisers and have cruised many different lines. The specialty restaurants are a huge disappointment. Our experience on the Jewel was by far the worse of any main line. We went to Chops three nights and they were out of a main appetizer each night. If you hate seafood and raw meat then you are out of luck. The service was pathetic with invasive waiters trying to impress you with how much “ extra “ they can do for you. My husband is a diabetic and a simple asking for a sugar free dessert was met with grumbles and an unacceptable request. A simple asking for horseradish was a disaster. We were told that was not available . The specialty restaurants also have insane up charges. $30.00 extra for a simple lobster that most can find at a local supermarket for more than half that price. The main stream restaurant says are nothing like they once were. The ships are trying to force everyone to pay for specialty restaurants and then up charge them. The quality of food in the buffet seems and main dining is not great. The service has dropped drastically since automatic tipping came into play. The wait staff are so pushy over tips. My teen daughter was mocked by a waiter in Chops for having motion sickness and asking to be able to look out a window at a back table. My kids at at the sushi bar and had to nickel and dime each item because of the insane up charges. The buffet was never open on time and the tables were seldom cleared. The staff was very pushy. Our room was never cleaned until late afternoon and we had to ask for soap to be put in the dispensers. Our room steward did the minimal amount of work. The trivia on board was horrible. The staff had horrible English skills and asked if they could read the questions in Spainish. People literally walked out because no one could understand the questions. They also repeated the same questions over and over so there was no challenge. One staff member gave so many hints that he gave away all the answers. Those that love Triva would do best to cruise with princess or one of the other lines that offer more challenges. The cruise director seemed to put so much focus on herself and less on her job. The female staff members were so over the top flirty with the young males and ignored the mid and older generations that make up the more frequent cruisers. The staff were seen arguing and two almost got into a fist fight. It was uncomfortable to watch. For those of us who are long time cruisers it is easy to see that Royal Caribbean is trying to force a choice between low quality buffets or over priced...low service specialty restaurant. They are about making the most money and catering to the elite. My advice is to skip the overpriced bad service and bad selection specialty restaurants. We did not eat at the Italian one but heard many many many comments of disappointment. Norwegian Cruise lines do a much better job at both customer service and specialty restaurants. We will not sail with RC again. This was the most disappointing ship we’ve been on and we’ve been on 25 plus. The entertainment was not great. Empty chairs everywhere. All in all a very low quality overall experience. Oh and the public restrooms were the dirtiest we’ve ever experienced. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
Whilst I saw some of the most amazing ports in the world. I was not so impressed with the cruise and its staff. Even thought our party of four all had MY TIME DINING, this was treated with complication for the staff, they had difficulty ... Read More
Whilst I saw some of the most amazing ports in the world. I was not so impressed with the cruise and its staff. Even thought our party of four all had MY TIME DINING, this was treated with complication for the staff, they had difficulty every night trying to find us table. And even once seated and orders takes we were moved again, only to be returned to the original table. Dinner was very disruptive and disorganised. The food was nice but after a while it all tasted bland. The table service was hit and miss, the waiters did not listen to your orders and dinner was rarely had with out a hitch. The staff were always apologetic, however this did not change the the service. We had Francesco asking us how this could improve and when we started to tell him, announced free Fillet Mignon for all, however we did not get to enjoy it, as we had a show to attend so meals ran late and took a long time, even though we stated we had a show to go to. WINDJAMMER FOOD was tasteless and disgusting, I was always feeling ill when I ate there. But I had to as the Dinning room was not open early enough on some mornings. The beauty spa was a horrendous, I had a 7:45pm appointment that I was running 10 minutes early for, I was told that I was running 5 minutes late and that I was not able to have the appointment now. I showed them my appointment docket and they still insisted that I was late and that they could still charge me for the appointment. They were not hospitable and they did nothing to rectify any issues . NEVER AGAIN!! I was trying to book into the Murder Mystery night and staff booked me into the captains table instead. Staff just did not listen to anything. The lifts were weird, they would only allow 2 to pick people up from all floors whilst 3 would remain empty or next to empty and the 2 that were picking up people were full. SOLARIUM Astor this place which is very inviting, but unfortunately people would leave there stuff on chairs from sun up to sun down, even when there weren't using them. So didn't take advantage of that space much. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
Day one was a red flag. The ship was being sanitized from the prior sailing. We get it. The Captain came on the intercom a number of times and harshly scolded the passengers. There should have been advertised activities for all to do. ... Read More
Day one was a red flag. The ship was being sanitized from the prior sailing. We get it. The Captain came on the intercom a number of times and harshly scolded the passengers. There should have been advertised activities for all to do. Most people just sat and even laid in the common areas for hours. The Windjammer cafeteria was a disaster. Below par food. Lines and not enough tables to accomodate the guests. The staff seemed robotic. Very little interaction with the guests. The main dining room,Tides, was not much better. I was unable to get a ginger ale till the third night?? Our cabin was worn. I understand, but clean the mirrors, and the bathroom floor and toilet. I received nothing I asked for. The room service menu was not hung in its place because the steward would have to pick up the mess!!!!! The ship did not cater to the passengers. We were held captive on a ship from hell. The BEST was getting off the ship. We were express which meant going to deck five and waiting outside at 6:30 am for over an hour with no where to sit. The line became very long about 300 people. Soon the line moved and about half of us were off the ship when the Captain called for numbers 1-10. We were just passing thru the Theater when everyone stood up and pushed into our existing line. The group in front of us got into pushing, shoving and swearing. The RC staffers turned their heads. I will never sail on RCCL again. The whole package needs trained and especially the top brass should be ashamed. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
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
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
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
As i lay in my stateroom ready to go to sleep, for the fourth night running I can hear the immense noise of the theatre below me. Whenever there is a theatre performance on this ship, we can hear it in our room as if we are there, the bass ... Read More
As i lay in my stateroom ready to go to sleep, for the fourth night running I can hear the immense noise of the theatre below me. Whenever there is a theatre performance on this ship, we can hear it in our room as if we are there, the bass shakes our beds and we can hear every word. We are on deck 7. The theatre is deck 6. The performances dont end until around 1am some nights. The only thing i can say is that the staff have honestly tried to keep us happy. We were offered a free meal as compensation which we did take. But we still had to stay up till 1am every night waiting for the theatre below to close. The next issue. I dont know if this is because I am British and the ship is american, but doughnuts for breakfast? There are healthy options if you want like fruit and cornflakes if you wade through the fruit loops, but be prepared for kids running up and down the restaurant with burgers and doughnuts. There was hardly ever any cutlery (although this did improve as time went on) . I also ordered some indian food as one of my meals in the tides restaurant. Oh my goodness it was worse than a £3 supermarket microwave meal. Gross. Again the staff were so very helpful and asked if there was anything they could do to compensate. Other points- my family spent $300 on champagne one night and they added $30 service charge. 18% gratuity is also added on everything! Why? Again i can only presume this is an american thing as in Britain if you put 18% gratuity on a bill people would flat out refuse to pay it. $30 service charge to open a bottle of champagne? Also....the smoking in the casino? Its not 1950. Why on earth is this still allowed. It stinks out the whole casino and surrounding bars. The only good thing about this cruise is super friendly and helpful staff who are way too good to work on this cruise ship. Oh and the food in the buffet is pretty good for buffet food. The Tides restaurant food is not so good. Oh and the cocktails are so very expensive but come out looking like Wetherspoons. Not cool Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
great crew, but would not travel with this cruise line again. The dinner food was actually terrible, even after trying 4 of the different dinners. There was no special dinner for the dress-up nights - in fact, most people didn't even ... Read More
great crew, but would not travel with this cruise line again. The dinner food was actually terrible, even after trying 4 of the different dinners. There was no special dinner for the dress-up nights - in fact, most people didn't even dress up, so it was no big deal at all. The activities were almost non-existent, especially on the sea days. It was extremely disappointing. I compared this to many Carnival cruises, and this was far below my past experiences. The at sea days were actually filled with fun activities around the pool and were very enjoyable. The only activities that RCI provided for the at sea days were a belly-flop contest (one day) and a sexy man contest (the other at sea day). It was pathetic! The nightly entertainment was a little more than high school. I felt nickel and dimed the entire cruise, always asking for more money, spa experiences, expensive drinks, etc. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
The Jewel of the Seas has to be towards the bottom end of the scale for good value cruising. If you value a good night’s sleep do not stay in cabins near the central area as the music blasts out of the Centrum every night until midnight ... Read More
The Jewel of the Seas has to be towards the bottom end of the scale for good value cruising. If you value a good night’s sleep do not stay in cabins near the central area as the music blasts out of the Centrum every night until midnight and can be heard loud and clear in all the cabins on all levels near the central, open area of the ship. For some reason all the entertainers on the ship thought passengers were deaf and made it impossible to have a discussion without yelling, while they played. On the subject of entertainment Jewel of the Seas fails dismally. It’s nightly shows are probably the poorest we have ever seen and was reflected by the low attendance by pasengers. Meals are very ordinary, with little change to an unimaginative and bland menu, even the buffet was better. Public area toilets were disgusting and often caused an odour around the ship. Cabins were given only a cursory clean. The smell of burning fuel was ever present and made it impossible at times to sit on the balcony plus every now and again large deposits of black material were emitted covering unsuspecting passengers in spots of black which the ship’s laundry was unable to remove. I’m not sure what all the money was spent on refurbishing the ship only two years ago as I found little evidence of it and very little to none must have been used on the cabins which were generally very tired looking. The only positive was the embarkation and disembarkation processes, which worked well. Overall not worth the expense and I would suggest if you are looking at a good, value for money cruise, don’t go on this ship. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We chose this cruise for the destinations, however my mistake for not reviewing the ship. Most things were less than adequate. I have been working and sailing with leading cruise lines since 2006, and never have I experienced so many ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the destinations, however my mistake for not reviewing the ship. Most things were less than adequate. I have been working and sailing with leading cruise lines since 2006, and never have I experienced so many unfriendly staff, disorganization of dining room and buffet service, food was flavourless for the most part and badly prepared. The bars were never staffed with enough bartenders and never any management over seeing these problems. As an experienced traveller I try to keep an open mind about a lot of things, but when I cruise I have a certain expectation and with the Jewel of the Seas those expectations were far from met. I am not one to write a bad review but I feel that there are so many things wrong with the organization and basic running of departments that I needed to write this. I am not trying to get anything for free for this trip as I will be hard pressed to sail with Royal Caribbean in the future! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
Chose the itinerary, the date, and the intermediate ship size was what we wanted. All of the onboard staff were excellent, and we were made to feel like we were their valued guests. Several negatives however. The food choices at the ... Read More
Chose the itinerary, the date, and the intermediate ship size was what we wanted. All of the onboard staff were excellent, and we were made to feel like we were their valued guests. Several negatives however. The food choices at the dinners were limited with many items repeated on the daily menus. The food that was served was subpar. The salads were skimpy. The prime rib was dry and tough, not good. Same for other beef entrees. And never on any earlier cruises have we ever been asked to make our dessert selection as part of our initial order and we found this to be strange. There were many features that were lacking. Our cabin bathroom offered no amenities other than soap and shampoo. I used the steam room almost daily and one or both the soap or shampoo in the showers in the men's locker room were often empty. The merchandise selection in the onboard shops was skimpy compared to other cruises on similarly sized ships. Having cruised on RC previously we felt the experience this time was less satisfying. Nevertheless the onboard staff (waiters, bar and beverage staff, cabin attendants, etc) were marvelous and did all possible to make us feel special and valued as their guests. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Poor food and not enough staff within the evening dining. Awful entertainment (with the exception of Tango in Buenos Aires and the ship orchestra). Food within the Windjammer (buffet) was OK. Nothing to rave about. Staff on the cruise, ... Read More
Poor food and not enough staff within the evening dining. Awful entertainment (with the exception of Tango in Buenos Aires and the ship orchestra). Food within the Windjammer (buffet) was OK. Nothing to rave about. Staff on the cruise, for the most part, were definitely not motivated and were observed to be berated by management when doing something wrong. I mentioned to my spouse that RC was the cruise line of "no". Instead of bending over backwards in order to satisfy a request, their immediate response was always "no" instead of "let me see what we can do for you". Overall, I would gauge this cruise line as a small step above Carnival. Not a luxury cruise line...not even close. If you desire a cruise line just to get drunk on, this will do for you. If you want a more luxurious cruise line, then skip RC. Thank you for listening. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
I chose to go with Royal Caribbean due to recommendations from a friend who used to work for you and I believed that Royal Caribbean was the gold standard when it came to cruise ship holidays, however I was very disappointed. I was looking ... Read More
I chose to go with Royal Caribbean due to recommendations from a friend who used to work for you and I believed that Royal Caribbean was the gold standard when it came to cruise ship holidays, however I was very disappointed. I was looking for a relaxing holiday, however from the moment I set foot on the ship, I was bombarded by sales pitches from crew trying to sell me drinks packages, jewellery, photograph packages, spa treatments, dinner packages, shore excursions and the list goes on. When reviewing the timetable of activities, it was amazing to see how many activities were either pay extra for, or were tasters to something where you ultimately had to pay something for the full experience. Ship crew always seemed to have an agenda to upsell something to you, get you tip them or towards the end of the trip, they would be practically begging you to name drop them on the customer satisfaction survey. I don't blame them at all, I assume it's a part of the work environment/culture they are a part of, but for me it felt totally over the top. The ship we were on, the Jewel of the Seas was a bit run down. I found the shows that were on the boat to be for the most part sub-standard (compared to the Broadway shows I have been lead to believe some of the larger ships have). The comedian on the first night and the show on the second night were totally cringeworthy and I walked out of the half-filled theatre quickly. The other shows were better and much more entertaining though (the acapella group, the Broadway to West End show and the comedian on the lat night). I didn't like the fact that unless you booked a shore excursion, hardly any useful information was provided to you about the island you were visiting. What would have been good was if you were provided with a decent map of the island marking off some of the top places to visit and information on how to get around. But again, it seemed like unless there is a financial incentive for Royal Caribbean, they are not really interested in helping their customers make the most of their stay. As 2/3 of our pre-booked shore excursions were cancelled due to rough seas, myself and my finance were often faced with a situation where we didn't know what we could do on the islands and ended up wandering aimlessly trying to find a tourist information office to help us. For what was supposed to be an "all-inclusive" break, it really didn't feel that way to me. As I mentioned before, there were extras charges for just about everything. One thing that really shocked me was that water wasn't even provided in the bedroom unless you were willing to pay for the Evian bottles of water they deliver to your room. That to me is just a basic necessity and it seems pretty outrageous to me that we needed to walk up several flights of stairs to find a bar that would provide us with cups of water before we went to bed. The majority of the staff we encountered were friendly and helpful so I can't complain about that, other than the incessant sales pitches! We did have one experience with a waitress in the breakfast room at Tides where she took our order and then disappeared (other members of staff couldn't find her either) and eventually we had to place a new order with someone else as she was nowhere to be found! She eventually reappeared later with no apologies! I don't want to name names here as I don't want anyone to face repercussions but as you can probably imagine, I wasn't too pleased! I'm not saying we didn't like anything about the trip - we absolutely did! The food in Tides was normally very good. The bed was super comfortable and the excursion we did manage to do (Eco Trek in Grenada) was fantastic. But it really did not match up to the high expectations I had for the trip and as a result I would be hard pushed to recommend Royal Caribbean to anyone else. I did originally submit this review directly to Royal Carribbean however after several weeks, they have not seen fit to respond so I decided to post it publicly for others to see. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
We choice this cruise strictly for the itinerary and the shore excursions. We knew it was an older ship and not to have high expectations as far as there is no promenade area. But the ship was so compact and really no where to go and just ... Read More
We choice this cruise strictly for the itinerary and the shore excursions. We knew it was an older ship and not to have high expectations as far as there is no promenade area. But the ship was so compact and really no where to go and just sit. Every area was small and dark. While it was no fault of Royal, we were not able to stop at St Croix, but when to St Thomas instead (which I have been to twice before). We were refunded for the St Croix excursion and picked a tour to Megans Bay.. which was changed to some other beach (a dirty and small.. ugly beach). We did not find out until AFTER we met at the meeting area. The tour bus told us to be back at the drop off spot at 3:15. We were there at 2:55 and waited. No bus. Everyone else who was on the bus going to the "beach" was not there either, so basically, the bus came early and left us. Both my boyfriend and I have knee & leg issues and we had no choice but to walk back to the ship... approximately a 45 minute walk. People are told to book excursions thru the ship because the cruise line is responsible for getting us back to the ship safely and on time. Definitely was NOT the case this time. When we went to the Shore Excursion desk afterwards, the staff said he would give us 20% off our account for the inconvenience (came out to $17). Our excursion in Barbados was canceled as well and when the refund was issued, it was only $68 when we paid $85 (I had my receipt with me). The guest services tells us that we already have a $17 credit and "if I do the math, that equals to the full refund of $85". The original refund of $17 was for the bus leaving us... had nothing to do with the excursion being cancelled. So they wound up giving us a $6.00 credit. REALLY? My leg wound up swelling up because of the long walk because of them and all we get is $6?? THIS TRIP WAS SUCH A LET DOWN!! And it's a shame that I feel like this towards Royal Caribbean because I have had past experiences which were pleasant. Aside from the horrible Excursion and guest Service experiences, there was not much to do as far as onboard activities. This was my 13th cruise (not all with RC) and this is the first time I was actually bored...I couldn't wait for vacation to end. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
For over 15 years, I've been a loyal RC Crown & Anchor member. The best way to summarize this trip is that it was like living in an annoying infomercial filled with overpriced junk. Food quality is the worst I've ever ... Read More
For over 15 years, I've been a loyal RC Crown & Anchor member. The best way to summarize this trip is that it was like living in an annoying infomercial filled with overpriced junk. Food quality is the worst I've ever experienced both in the dining room and the Windjammer. Customer service is poor throughout the ship. The only information available is in the form of 'extras' that the company wants to sell. The deals you once got as a Crown & Anchor member has turned into "10% off a drink at the bar". Wow... Underwhelming. Seriously, as a Platinum member, I was offered about a dozen one-time use deals that consisted of the aforementioned and 10% off a $25 or more purchase of RC branded item. As a bonus, they have near-antique exercise equipment in the fitness spa. Internet service is a nice addition. However, it is outrageously priced and the quality is poor. RC was once a high-quality, relaxing vacation option. Today, I'd rather go stand in a 3-hour line at Disney to see a 2-minute animatronic show. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
I was very disheartened by the constant sound of money being sucked from my wallet and bank account. Charged $159.00 to drink water [unlimited amount] for a week....when it was available. $52.00 to play 3 games of bingo... $58.00 to get a ... Read More
I was very disheartened by the constant sound of money being sucked from my wallet and bank account. Charged $159.00 to drink water [unlimited amount] for a week....when it was available. $52.00 to play 3 games of bingo... $58.00 to get a ride to the beach [for 2]....$22.00/day for internet service... $14.99/day for wifi service....$6.00 a day for toilet paper [just kidding about the toilet paper...but I wouldn't be surprised if it is a future charge]. Another point of contention was the inability of the crew [customer service] to provide exchange rates and currency for the ports of call. Thereby hindering the ability to barter good prices for everyday goods. What little positive I found on the cruise came in the form of the people working the cruise. I found most to be conscientious, hard working, dutiful, and pleasant. Their positive attitude went a long way toward lessening the sting of the "Money Grab". Ate most meal in the Windjammer as it is a buffet with open seating and flexible no set serving times. For the most part the food was varied and good....not exceptional as experienced on other cruise lines. The exceptional staff and service is to be noted. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
This was my first time sailing with Royal Caribbean and I have cruised many lines over the years to tune of 15 different cruises. I was looking forward to Royal Caribbean and I had heard great things about this cruise line. I booked the ... Read More
This was my first time sailing with Royal Caribbean and I have cruised many lines over the years to tune of 15 different cruises. I was looking forward to Royal Caribbean and I had heard great things about this cruise line. I booked the Royal Suite 1556 on the Jewel of the Seas and the state room was absolutely fantastic. The room attendant was great and since the ship had been refreshed less than 2-years ago I thought the general appearance was good for the age of the ship. The specialty restaurants were excellent and the chef’s table was a great event. The main dining room was inconsistent at best however it is hit or miss on these ships. Spend the $$$ on the specialty dining you won’t be disappointed. I purchased the interest at sea package for around $75.00 and it was slower than what I expected for a paid package so I won’t ever waste the money on that. Boarding was a challenge as I encountered inexperienced terminal staff who sent me to the standard check in and the waited 5-hours for my luggage and the concierge to arrive to the stateroom. Not a great experience and one that was less than promised considering that I was in the highest tier stateroom on the ship. They made up for with disembarkation which was speedy. On the last night we were walking to the Chop’s Restaurant on deck six and unfortunately found ourselves in the middle of an electrical fire in the Schooner Bar corridor. I pulled the fire alarm and it took a long time for the crew to respond and when they did they were confused. I honestly expected them to jump immediately into emergency response mode and they failed on almost every level. The fire was extinguished and thankfully the ceiling sustained damage and the fire was extinguished. Finally after a good 15 minutes the captain called the emergency announcement for the crew. I guess better late than never. We went along to dinner and 40-minutes after the event the captain announced that there was a small electrical incident that resulted in only a minor smoke event and no fire reported. Okay I get it he did not want to cause a panic but not less than 20 passengers witnessed and recorded the incident and the crew lied about it. A fire at Sea is a serious incident and Jewel of the Seas crew handled it badly and then lied about it. I have serious concerns with Royal Caribbean’s safety protocol. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
we were in a group and was pick by them . most of the shore excursions were cancel .The food was cold and not available 24 hours. The buns and toast was hard as a rock i have bean on other lines and the food was available 24 ... Read More
we were in a group and was pick by them . most of the shore excursions were cancel .The food was cold and not available 24 hours. The buns and toast was hard as a rock i have bean on other lines and the food was available 24 hours a day. The ice cream bar was not working and there was no toppings , Hamburgers were dried hard 5 of my shore excursions were cancel before i got on ship THEN 5 more were cancel when i got there. Just because they were not full. you should have a contract with your shore people and make them fulfill there end of the contract. This is my first time on Royal and may be my last .Your guess service gave me a discount but were unable to help. I was on a 2 week cruise and very unhappy with the line ... Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
We were booked on Carnival Fascination for this week but FEMA leased the Fascination for hurricane relief so we looked for another cruise leaving San Juan on same date. We had been on the Jewel of the Seas before and were not impressed but ... Read More
We were booked on Carnival Fascination for this week but FEMA leased the Fascination for hurricane relief so we looked for another cruise leaving San Juan on same date. We had been on the Jewel of the Seas before and were not impressed but considering the circumstances we thought we'd try again. Embarkation went smoothly. 2 of the 3 cabins were very good. 1 cabin on level 2 was dingy and smelled like sewer. Dining was just ok. Waiter was very good but slow as we could never get out of dining room before 8pm and we were always one of the first people in. Always late to shows. Had a good comedian but other shows are definitely showing cutbacks. Hard to find ice cream machines open. After shows hard to find any food on board. Having 2 teenage boys a egg salad sandwich or veggie sandwich at solarium just didn't cut it. Had pizza but lucky to get a piece of pepperoni on pepperoni pizza slice. Took a "catamaran" excursion thru ship in Martinique. Boys love to swim and brochure said beach time, could jump off catamaran and was 4 hours long for $94. After a short ride on the big pontoon, we were split into 2 sections and not allowed to get off boat. We were ushered to a dingy basement like area to watch for turtles thru glass windows. The AC was on high blowing right on us. Lady in charge of tour made my husband move and lie in back area as she looked thru window and told us what to look for. 2 people squished into a 2 foot square hole- even elderly- awful. When our time came to get to beach we had 40 minutes... Very disappointing and misleading. We did stop at excursion desk and they totally blew us off. Will stick with Carnival, Celebrity, or may try one of Royals larger ships. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
I've been cruising on Royal Caribbean for 25 years and am a Diamond member. Until I realized I had left my jewelry and a camera in my suite I thought this was the best cruise I'd had in 15 years. The new menu was terrific and ... Read More
I've been cruising on Royal Caribbean for 25 years and am a Diamond member. Until I realized I had left my jewelry and a camera in my suite I thought this was the best cruise I'd had in 15 years. The new menu was terrific and the improvement in the food was noticeable. The staff worked well together and everything went smoothly. We were treated well in all venues, and had a great time. However, all my good feelings about the cruise have been overtaken by my despair at losing my jewelry and camera. As I was unpacking on Monday, January 29, I realized I had left my jewelry in my suite, on the shelf below the safe. I had a friend who stayed on the ship to cruise the following week and she had the same cabin steward we had. I contacted her and she asked our cabin steward, Sandy, if he had found my jewelry. He said he had found it, turned it into housekeeping's lost and found and it would be sent to Miami. He suggested we contact customer service to arrange getting it back. We called Royal Carribean and they said we had to file our claim on a 3rd party site, Chargerback. We completed a claim on the site, and began waiting. After 3 days we got an email saying they were investigating and would either return it in 30 days or close the case. On February 8 I called Royal Carribean customer service to check on my lost jewelry. They said it usually takes 10 days and just wait. Today we got another email saying they were still checking. We spent thousands of dollars on this cruise and more than $100,000 cruising with Royal Caribbean over the years. Yet, Royal Carribean is spending nothing on returning my jewelry. They have nothing to do with the return. It is in the hands of a third party. If I don't get all my jewelry and camera back, dispite the great food, great service, and great iteniry, it will be my last Royal Caribbean cruise. I can't believe the cruise line thinks this horrible service is OK. 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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