1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. Costa Cruises
  4. Costa Magica Review
  5. Costa Magica Cruise Reviews

30 Costa Magica Cruise Reviews

Ah yes! The COSTATRAGICA! For starters-Ugly ship. Did I say Ugly ship? I meant VERY UGLY SHIP! It must have been designed by a person with a severe drinking problem. It can't have been planned that way on purpose. Not to mention, ... Read More
Ah yes! The COSTATRAGICA! For starters-Ugly ship. Did I say Ugly ship? I meant VERY UGLY SHIP! It must have been designed by a person with a severe drinking problem. It can't have been planned that way on purpose. Not to mention, it's dirty. Terrible food, really terrible food served in a sweltering dining room and on deck. Your choice of either bread (bread sticks or thawed out rolls) left much to be desired. It did however compliment the boringly bland poor quality entrees. The COSTATRAGICA must have a corner on rude people both passengers and many of the crew personnel. If you are lucky enough to find an elevator that works, good luck trying to get on or off it. The pool was loaded with pushy slobs and children in diapers--in violation of the rules and common sense. God help you if you speak English! You are a 5th class citizen and if you happen to deal with the English speaking representative and he says hello to you, he's most likely lying to you. Talk about useless. Unfortunately,the ship was sooo bad that it overshadowed the excellent ports of call. What the heck, it only cost 6 K altogether. We sail at least once a year and have booked a cruise to Alaska in July on Celebrity which we have used 5 times before as well as Royal Caribbean and Holland America, all great lines. It's a shame we didn't use one of them for this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2005
This is a huge ship, accommodating something like 2800 passengers, and it came as a surprise just before we started to find out that this formerly Italian line had been purchased by Carnival. The cruise itself was mostly a big ... Read More
This is a huge ship, accommodating something like 2800 passengers, and it came as a surprise just before we started to find out that this formerly Italian line had been purchased by Carnival. The cruise itself was mostly a big disappointment, and the biggest disappointment -- universally as far as I could tell from other American passengers -- was the food. Drab, tasteless, and certainly not the quality of Italian food that you can find at the simplest Trattoria in Italy or even decent Italian restaurants in the States! The "buffet" offered as an alternative to the formal dining rooms for breakfast, lunch and dinner was mostly "disgusting" -- offering, for example, breakfast of powdered scrambled eggs, dry pancakes and waffles, and lots of cold cuts. "Gross!" as the kids say. The only really good meal we had aboard was at the extra-pay "private" restaurant, where the service and the food reminded me of what cruises used to be. With the $20/each fee, wine and tip, it ran $100. The cruise was clearly aimed at middle class Italian and European families (kids travel free) and offered little that was upscale or sophisticated. The service onboard was good, and the price was probably fair. The diversions onboard, mostly slot machine gambling or sunning, were sort of empty. The entertainment, except for one night, was painfully amateurish. Finally -- and I guess this is widely true of all cruise lines -- the cruise has its hands out for extra money every time you turn around. You pay for excursions, which are mostly poorly organized affairs that "dump" you into hard-sell shopping opportunities in awful places like Tunis. You pay for drinks, of course, even bar prices for every Coke you imbibe. The cruise itself is a constant barrage of shopping opportunities with a great deal of junk jewelry ($10 watches, for example) and other junk. Remember that Europeans smoke like chimneys, everywhere including elevators! Children are unruly and all parents don't pay enough attention to controlling their kids, inflicting them on others! And, finally, as has been widely stated -- Europeans do not know how to stand in line! They push and shove their way in to buffet lines and everywhere else. After being surprised, even shocked, the Americans I saw simply started standing their ground and refusing to allow this kind of line crashing. One irony is that it is an international group of passengers. All announcements are made in 5 languages! But, you don't get the benefit of the internationality, as they seat you with people like you. That does allow easier conversation, but it would be much more fun if there are a greater opportunity to mix as even if the English weren't perfect, most Europeans speak some to quite a bit of English. One thing to be very careful of planning better than we did is ground transportation to and from the ship. You can buy transfers from the cruise line at a reasonable price ($30 each way) if you are going to and from the airport. But, if you go to Rome ahead of time, you will find yourself stuck paying huge fees to limo services -- I figure we spent around $500 just for ground transportation between Rome and the port Civitavecchia! There are cheaper ways to do it, including the train, but you'd better be able to lug your own suitcases from the train platform without any help, elevators or escalators. We did love the stops in Spain, both Barcelona and Majorca, and in Palermo and Malta. Most of these we explored on our own. Many people remarked that they found the excursions were overpriced and not well run. In conclusion, I suppose I am a grouch and the cruise probably was a lot of fun for most of the 2800 passengers onboard this HUGE ship, but it has cured me of the desire to ever again do this kind of cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2005
On October 29, 2005, my wife and I flew to Rome with two friends for a cruise to the Mediterranean on Costa Cruise Lines. The airline personnel on Alatalia were less than candid regarding seating. At JFK airport we arrived 2-1/2 hours ... Read More
On October 29, 2005, my wife and I flew to Rome with two friends for a cruise to the Mediterranean on Costa Cruise Lines. The airline personnel on Alatalia were less than candid regarding seating. At JFK airport we arrived 2-1/2 hours early and were told bulkhead seats were only available just prior to boarding the aircraft. I am 6'4" and could use the extra leg room. We were also not permitted to upgrade. At the Rome airport, we arrived three hours early and requested bulkhead or exit seats and were informed that they had already been filled and that we should have phoned two hours earlier. The Costa rep never informed us of this situation. Not only did she lose two of us at the airport in her haste but she was no help to us in any way. It seems that if you show up early they will not accommodate your seating request but if you show up later, they won't do anything either. As for Alatalia airlines, we WON'T be showing up again! To date, we have not been credited with our onepass miles with Continental. It seems to be taking forever. The ship, CostaMagica, is something to behold! The color scheme and design of the main dining room must have been dreamt up by Ray Charles subject to the approval of Stevie Wonder. Talk about tacky..........what color combinations. The room was a constant hot house. The men were lucky, as we were able to remove our jackets. Many of the passengers did not have that concern on formal nights. They simply wore clean polo shirts. Undoubtedly, one of the male diners was a "gentleman" who earlier in the afternoon saw fit to blow his nose into the hot tub (YUCK!) What the heck..........babies in diapers were also allowed in the hot tubs! Very sanitary! The chandeliers bordered on being obscene. They would have to be seen to be believed! On a good day some of the elevators worked but not all. After our second day at sea, we were given the life jacket drill. Isn't that usually done before you leave port? Thank God we didn't sink before the second day! On an Italian ship, one would expect to be served good food. Guess again, selections were limited, bread was terrible....a choice between bread sticks and thawed out rolls. No variety. Forget about seconds or changing your order. Beef, chicken and veal were tough enough to sole your shoes with, all of which was in line with the general lack of quality and poor service. Desserts were so bad they could have been upgraded with Twinkies! What ever happened to good old-fashioned Italian pastries? All of the other cruises we've been on (this was our 12th), we've been served Lobster and Filet Mignon at least once during the course of a seven night cruise. We did have some very bad shrimp once. I requested iced tea at dinner and was told it was only in a can and would cost extra. We were provided with one very small bar of soap for the week and it did not lather. If you wanted body lotion or a shower cap, it was by request only. BATHROBES? Forget about it! Chocolates on your pillow? Are you kidding? No way! In all fairness, the coffee was good but on the last day at the last meal, a couple next to us (not Americans) were asked if they'd like espresso or cappuccino. That's the first we knew that this was a choice we could have had all week. Nobody volunteered any information to us. Talk about chintzy!!! ENTERTAINMENT!!! What entertainment? I have been more entertained by watching my daughter-in-law change my grandson's diaper. All of the music was canned and the same recorded introduction was played every night. The introductions for the "Shows?" were done first in Italian (understandable), followed by French, Spanish, German and as an afterthought in English! We sailed on Cunard, Holland America, Celebrity and Royal Caribbean lines and were always astonished at the number of and the talent of the musicians. Usually there are two Broadway-worthy shows! The Captain's "Cocktail Party" was designated to sitting in the theatre and being served a choice of either something that tasted like bad Gatorade and Philadelphia's finest canned champagne, while listening to the Captain introduce the entire crew......once again in Italian, French, Spanish, German and oh yes, English! Cleanliness - Some of the glasses and tables in the Piano Bar appeared to have been washed with floor mops. The shops on the ship were expensive (to be expected) but had no variety. Our travelling companions (friends for over 55 years) are of Italian-American descent, and they too were, to say the least, very disenchanted! We had been on several cruises with them previously and they declared that no way would they ever again take a Costa Cruise or tour. Costa also booked us into a second-class hotel costing $200 per person per night somewhere in the middle of nowhere in the middle of Rome. We had to take multiple transportation to get to anything worth seeing. There was nothing within walking distance. We are now looking into a July/August Alaska cruise on Celebrity, Royal Caribbean or Holland America. It's best to stay with a proven winner and not be treated like a fourth class citizen. I wonder.........does anyone ever book a second cruise with Costa? Maybe people who enjoy root canal and are rude, pushy and ignorant. WHAT MORE CAN I SAY? Read Less
Sail Date October 2005
CostaMagica translated means 'living nightmare.' I wouldn't wish the horrid experience with Costa on anyone. I'd previously had a cruise with Costa which had only a few discrepancies, such as a near-collision at sea ... Read More
CostaMagica translated means 'living nightmare.' I wouldn't wish the horrid experience with Costa on anyone. I'd previously had a cruise with Costa which had only a few discrepancies, such as a near-collision at sea with a barge. After throwing most of the passengers out of their beds and all of the dining room on to the floor during the drastic evasive maneuver, the rest of the cruise was simply average. I'm still curious how something as large and slow as a barge got so close to the ship before someone on the bridge put down their bottle of chianti and yanked the wheel. But this last cruise was especially bad. First of all, I booked the cruise Civitavecchia to Civitavecchia but the tickets came out Savona to Savona. I'd already booked the airfare and didn't have time to change the tickets so I got a rental car to Savona. I checked in to my 'oceanview cabin with veranda' which was very nice before exploring the ship. The ship's gaudy decor can best be described as 'Pornography Tycoon' and would be only laughably tasteless if it wasn't actually meant to be taken seriously. The lifeboat drill took ages which was especially alarming considering how close we were to a collision on my last Costa cruise. Before dinner, all the English speakers met with our director who went over some of the details of the ship. I brought up the error of the embarkation port and hoped we could come to an understanding. Although I didn't expect to be reimbursed for the rental car, I at least wanted to be reimbursed for the 24 hours I would not actually be aboard the ship. The director told me my travel agent made the error. I replied that I was present sitting next to the agent when the reservation was made. He then asked me to "prove" that Costa made the error. Because I hadn't packed for a legal court hearing this vacation, they refused to reimburse me. I then went to register for shore excursions but was told the next two ports were sold out. I was welcome to join an excursion with a guide who didn't speak English. What a delightful alternative to them simply hiring another guide. After dinner, I went back to my cabin where I realized why they have schematic drawings in the catalog. My cabin was directly over the ceiling speakers to the main disco! The glasses on the table were literally bouncing! I spent a horrible evening trying to sleep and the raging noise finally stopped after 2 am. The next day, I complained about the cabin situation, offering to switch cabins, and was told to call back that night if it was noisy again. What is the point of that if you aren't turning the music down? "We have to send someone up to verify the music is too loud." Huh? So after dinner, I returned to my jumping glasses and called down to the service desk. A few minutes later, a crewman arrived and said, "Wow, this IS REALLY loud." To which I replied, "What?!" because I couldn't hear him. He got on a phone and called down saying how it really is loud in the cabin. Then we stood looking at each other. I asked if I was being moved to another cabin and he said he didn't know. He was sent up simply to determine if I was telling the truth! Now a crewmember with a slightly nicer jacket arrived and escorted me to a new cabin. I asked if this was my new cabin and she said no. Here was the Costa solution: Every night after dinner I was to call down and complain about the noise. They would then check their database for any empty cabin and if there was one available, I could sleep in another cabin for that night only. And I had to be out by 8 am! This went on every night for the cruise with me sleeping in five cabins over six nights! Breakfast delivered to your room is included in your price. In six days, breakfast actually arrived to my cabin twice. The second time the milk pitcher for my cereal contained prune juice instead of milk, but that must be part of the Costa experience. During the cruise, I met an English couple who said there was a fire on their deck during the evening. The crew arrived, shouted instructions in Italian, and then shut the fire doors with all the English inside! They went to their cabin balcony for fresh air, hoping the fire didn't spread. One day, a lady waiting in line next to me had someone break the queue and she said, "excuse me, I was here first." The person wheeled around and replied, "I'm not a guest; I work here!" showing her Costa badge. The passenger said, "sorry, but people have broken queues my whole cruise." The crewmember's response? "Welcome to Costa!" When I went to disembark in Italy, the crew lost my passport. They couldn't find it. So, I called my director and he said, "they haven't lost it; its just not where it's supposed to be." Brilliant Costa answer. They advertise shuttles to the airport when you get to your return port. I asked for a shuttle to my airport (Rome-Ciampino) and they said, "we don't do shuttles there because that isn't the Costa-contracted airport." So I paid for a bus to downtown Rome and, without any Costa assistance and not knowing the local language, booked my own bus to the airport. After a meeting with my travel agent, Costa was dropped as a client from the agency. BOTTOM LINE: Unless you deeply desire a miserable experience, avoid Costa at all costs! Read Less
Sail Date September 2005
Costa Cruise lines -- Magica was a terrible disappointment. I had read a lot of reports the food was bad on Costa lines. I got scared when the first day our cruise director warned us the food wouldn't be what we would expect, as we ... Read More
Costa Cruise lines -- Magica was a terrible disappointment. I had read a lot of reports the food was bad on Costa lines. I got scared when the first day our cruise director warned us the food wouldn't be what we would expect, as we are not familiar with European food. Personally I've been to Europe numerous times, and while I am always happy to come home to American food, I've always found plenty of food to keep me happy. None-the-less, being someone who can be content on a single food for the week, I wasn't concerned. Additionally, I don't go on cruises for the food, so it really didn't phase me. Did I ever learn my lesson. The food was so bad, everything from burnt, dry chicken to disgusting fish, even the French toast was awful. To make it worse, the second day we all got food poisoning from dinner. Do NOT underestimate how TERRIBLE food can deteriorate your experience. The ship itself was quite boring, it reminded me of the very first Carnival ship I went 15 years ago that was decommissioned that year, only not quite as fancy. The dining room looked like a cheap cafe with chairs that had the same fabric my father's VW bug had for curtains. While there are 11 bars, most are just big hallways with a dance floor ...i.e. constant traffic. Don't plan on spending more the five minutes at the gift shops. Beyond that... besides a Casino... there really isn't much else on the ship. There wasn't a single place on the ship that felt elegant, or romantic. DON'T go on this ship if you are looking for a high quality relaxing piano bar. (They did have one, but it was in the center of the busiest part of the ship, and the piano player, that sang, was quite awful). As a matter of fact, almost all of the artists in all of the bars were quite awful. We attempted several nights to relax in a variety of bars, but ended up retiring early after severe frustration. Nobody dresses up. Formal night... many people wear jeans and shorts. Not that you felt comfortable in a Tux sitting in the incredibly cheap atmosphere of the ship. Entertainment was actually OK. If it weren't for the incredibly rude Italians constantly getting up in front of you and standing, I would say the entertainment was almost good several nights, as long as you are open to opera and a few other Italian forms of entertainment. As with many ships... good luck finding a chair by the pool. The people on the ship (Italians) are incredibly rude. Woman would quite literally push you out of the way to get to the elevator first, to get to the buffet first, or just to get in front of you. The men would belch, pick their noses, and undress in public. Service was not any where near the standard of even Carnival (let alone Royal Caribbean). Getting a glass of water at the beginning of a meal would take about three or four requests and thirty minutes of wasted of time. Don't even think about asking for a refill (we ended up bring water with us). Usually you would have to flag about three people down before someone would finally take your order. Don't expect any towel animals or anything special in your room... while the rooms are nice (quite big actually)... there's no special attention given to guests. The interesting thing about this ship was the way they board the ship. Passengers embark and disembark at almost every stop... which means its relatively fast to get on and off. It also means that unless you get on at the stop with the most people (Palermos, if I recall)... the ship caters its welcoming events to them. We actually had our emergency life vest demonstration the day before we got off, right after the welcome party for the English speaking guests... Nobody speaks English. Don't plan on going on this cruise and meeting anyone, unless you know Italian or Spanish. There were about 50 people in total that spoke English. I'm sure there are plenty more bad things to say about Costa, but if I haven't convinced you now not to go, then nothing can. The itinerary was very nice... just don't even THINK about letting Costa take you through it. Read Less
Sail Date April 2005
Costa Magica Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 3.0 3.1
Entertainment 4.0 3.2
Public Rooms 4.0 3.9
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.7
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.2
Enrichment 1.0 2.7
Service 4.0 3.7
Value For Money 4.0 3.2
Rates 3.0 3.9

Find a Costa Magica Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click