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

40 Costa Magica Cruise Reviews

In my opinion this cruise has one port missing. It arrives in Stockholm on a Friday, boarding is on a Saturday, then it leaves for Helsinki, following is 2 days St. Petersburg, then a short time in Tallin. The day after is again in ... Read More
In my opinion this cruise has one port missing. It arrives in Stockholm on a Friday, boarding is on a Saturday, then it leaves for Helsinki, following is 2 days St. Petersburg, then a short time in Tallin. The day after is again in Stockholm, and the following day you have to disembark. I can't understand why they don't add Latvia for example instead of docking for 2 days in Stockholm. Otherwise it would have been nice to have 3 days in Russia, but Stockholm is the least city that one has to see. Something about the ship, decor is very old, brown and orange everywhere, breakfast very poor, bacon and sausages are not even good for dogs...thanks God they offered meat in the grill section which I enjoyed very much for breakfast. In the evening we ate at the sit-in restaurant, food taste average, food decoration very nice. Entertainment during sit-in dinner ZERO neither some background recorded music except for the Italian night and the gala dinner where there was live entertainment which we enjoyed very much. At the pool area NO MUSIC except when there are organised activities which happen only when the ship is at sea...I find this so stupid as it is costless to put a nice music on through a CD...The pool slide on Costa Magica was delusive..it is opened only for 1 hr if you're lucky. So, we booked this ship for the slide and when we boarded we could'nt even use it, we had to wait until the last day to go on it 3 times as they did'nt advise its opening times and we encountered it open by chance....why? we presume so that they won't have to repaint it since the blue colour comes off on your swimsuit or because they don't want to waste human resources to guard the slide. As for the bar service, we bought Piu Gusto for all the cabin which was a family of 4. One of us went to get 2 drinks from the pool bar and the barman humiliated him by asking him for another card....why when our package included unlimited drinks? why ruin guests holiday experience with this approach?? as for children activities the Peppa Pig activities were great and the children had so much fun in the Squok Club...so well done to them. I was going to forget about this...this is unbelievable but true...guys forget that you will be getting an ice cream or a nice milkshake on the ship...if you want one you have to pay for it...this is our 5th cruise and we never encountered anything similar!! As for the Photos...when they will learn that if they reduce the price they will sell more? it's unbelievable how many photos they throw away after every cruise when if they sell them at least half the price many people will be encouraged to buy them...very greedy and stupid behavior in my opinion. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Visiting the places we were interested in. Good value for money and suits all budgets. Booking in was very efficient. The ship it’s self was very ornate bars, lovely theatre & lounges. The food was ok if not fab, but ... Read More
Visiting the places we were interested in. Good value for money and suits all budgets. Booking in was very efficient. The ship it’s self was very ornate bars, lovely theatre & lounges. The food was ok if not fab, but bearing in mine the cost it was good value for money. The cabin staff, lounge staff and restaurant were lovely. What spoilt our experience somewhat was the aggressive attitude of the bar staff and some reception staff. We always treat all the staff with respect and a smile but some staff thought it was ok to be rude and aggressive. We did the Stockhol, Helsinki, St Petersburg, TAllinn stops and i would highly recommend these, take an extra day in Stockholm as there is plenty to see. At this point I am not sure I would book Costa again, purely due to the number of times I encountered rude staff and saw how they behaved towards other passengers, even on 1 occasion to an elderly and frail lady. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose this cruise because the time and cost was right for us and the ports visited appealed to us. The time spent in each port seemed reasonable also. We are American and we did know the experience would be different for us on an ... Read More
We chose this cruise because the time and cost was right for us and the ports visited appealed to us. The time spent in each port seemed reasonable also. We are American and we did know the experience would be different for us on an Italian ship...previously all our cruises have been on Carnival. (The first day as soon as we got on the ship and went to the buffet, a couple sat down next to us at the table, but as soon as we said "hello" they got up and moved...obviously they didn't want to sit next to Americans!) The employee, Michaela, who "took care" of the English-speakers was very nice and helpful, having a separate meeting with us and offering her help when we needed it. If you are English-speaking be aware that announcements will be made on Costa ships in various languages, taking up a lot of time. The cabin was comparable to Carnival cabins, as the designer of the Carnival and Costa ships is the same. However, our cabin was showing wear with the front of a drawer falling off among other things. The cabin steward was efficient and nice. One thing I found disappointing is that Costa assigns you a cabin, no choice of your own! On Carnival we always choose the cabin we want. We ended up with a cabin at the aft of the ship. It wasn't a bad location except in rough waters, which we had only once. Food in the dining room was beautifully presented but not always tasty. Main entrees sometimes seemed odd, even though I am a fairly adventurous eater. One of our waiters was really screwy, laughing at who knows what...our American table-mates and us? Food at the buffet was always the same and plentiful, tasty for the most part. Costa offers drink packages and it seemed to us beforehand on the website that in order to have water at meals you'd need to order a water package, and we ordered one for me. I wish we hadn't as I could have had natural water at meals anyway. The package stated that you'd have this water to carry with you, however, the water is in liter bottles that I did not want to carry with me, especially on excursions. Plus, the waiters NEVER understood that I was to get this water (my choice of sparkling or natural) during the whole cruise, even though it was printed on the back of my Costa card and even after several phone calls in which the customer service person said they would speak to the waiters about it! They admitted the employees needed more training! My husband had the beer package and had the same trouble. His Costa card too had "water" printed on the back of it so it was a reoccurring problem as well. Fact is, you could get wine or beer anywhere without a package and the cost seemed to be the same. I would not recommend purchasing drink packages. The worst part of the cruise was the trouble we had with excursions. The one I was looking forward to the most was cancelled. This was the "Gourmet" excursion with wine-tasting and truffles out of Savona, Italy. First they said it was cancelled due to not enough English-speakers signing up for it, but when I inquired about going on a non-English-speaking excursion to that location they said they were not going there at all! We substituted an excursion to Genoa. As it turned out, I had obviously eaten something in the dining room the night before we reached Savona that didn't agree with me and I just could not risk being away from a bathroom on a bus for an hour to go to Genoa the next morning. I took medicine on my own and knew I'd get over it in time and didn't need a doctor. When we called to cancel that excursion they said we could not cancel it unless I went to the doctor, for a fee of 50 euros, and got a note saying I was not well enough to go on the excursion. We said, soooo you can cancel an excursion on us but we cannot cancel one on you! Right? They said right! If I'd spent the money for the doctor and he said I was okay, which he likely would have done since I had no fever, we would have spent the extra 50 euros and still paid for the excursion. As it was, we paid for an excursion we didn't take. Then, after our excursion in Pisa my husband started having back and hip pain and knew he was not going to be able to walk for the 2.5 hours on the excursion we'd booked for Rome the next day. We decided we'd be better off doing the "Rome on our own" tour and tried to change it the night before Rome but the excursion office was closed. We called early the next morning and they said we could change the excursion at the departure point but still had to pay for the original one. So, we did that out of necessity. Rome turned out to be cold and rainy. That was not Costa's fault of course, but almost all the people on our bus returned to the point we were to meet the bus early because we were all miserable due to the weather, and the bus did not pull up until the exact minute we were to leave. It does seem like the bus could have gotten there a little ahead of time as there was space to park the bus and the weather was so awful! Most of the tour guides were okay. The one in Pisa was excellent! The one in Palma de Mallorca spoke so fast that we couldn't understand her even if it was in English! All in all, the Costa excursions were disappointing for us, although Pisa was excellent and we had a wonderful time on our own in Aix-en-Provence, which was an excursion out of Marseilles. This cruise had people embarking and disembarking at each port, which was also different. This meant that there was a safety session each day for those just getting on the ship, and that there were extra announcements and "noise" each day. We did not take an excursion in Barcelona as we got on and off there. We spent 4 extra days in Barcelona at the end of the cruise and that was a very pleasant part of our trip. Glad we did that. Barcelona is an interesting and very friendly city! Actually, the very best part of our cruise was time spent with the English-speaking couples we met. With so few of us we developed a sort of camaraderie among us and that was fun! Thank goodness for them as I must say that some of the other people on the cruise (not all by any means) were actually rude and pushy, not something we were used to on a cruise. In conclusion, we will not take a cruise on an Italian ship again, and don't recommend it for Americans. My total rating of 3 stars is generous. My husband would rate it a 2. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We chose this cruise because we wanted to visit Scandinavia, but not at the luxury level. We covered Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, UK, France, Portugal and Spain, albeit for only a few hours each. Our Balcony stateroom was great, the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to visit Scandinavia, but not at the luxury level. We covered Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, UK, France, Portugal and Spain, albeit for only a few hours each. Our Balcony stateroom was great, the ship itself is attractive, entertainment very good and the staff were mostly personable. We were an hour late docking in Amsterdam - back and forth many times until they found the right dock...and blamed it on (the minimal) fog. Many people were late to their excursions, which resulted in backing up 1st seatings. Internet was non-existent unless you paid $10/day, and I heard a passenger complain that it didn't work anyway. In Amsterdam, the crew acted like they had never tried to sort people for cruises before - resulting in total chaos and people very late for their excursions. Coffee and "juice" (diluted imitation junk( were not available during buffet hours - water only. I expected, this being an Italian ship, that we would experience great Italian food - no. Very bland, tasteless pasta dishes, servings were made to look artistic to disguise the fact that you were getting about enough to feed a bird. Sometimes the meat was so tough we couldn't cut it with a knife. I could go on, but you get the picture. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Chose this cruise because of the ports it was visiting. Beautiful ship, although dated with some maintenance needed. Hygiene was not enforced, there were plenty of containers full of hand cleanser but rarely used. At the buffet people just ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of the ports it was visiting. Beautiful ship, although dated with some maintenance needed. Hygiene was not enforced, there were plenty of containers full of hand cleanser but rarely used. At the buffet people just dived in with hands to get food even though serving spoons were there. Noticed many people using toilet facilities but not washing hands. Many people got gastro, flu, coughing with doctors & nurses kept busy. It felt as though English speaking guests were not welcome, activities were for European guests. Entertainment was poor with the best shows being put on at dinner by the wait staff. Enjoyed the food at restaurants, wait staff pleasant, although at times their serving was like an outdoor cafe. Children ran riot well after midnight. Many young staff on who thought everyone was deaf, so yelled loving the sound of their own voices. Reception staff were unable to solve issues raised which could have been dealt with by some FAQs. Felt they were justifying their jobs! Lacked leadership. Had to pay extra for ice cream, coffee, pizza. Photos expensive, 14 Euro. Shore excursions expensive, easier to do yourself. Spa area needs a revamp. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I chose this cruise thinking it would be lovely for my moms very first cruise. Honestly the ports of call sounded more appealing than a normal med cruise. And that was my main reason for picking this cruise line. I have cruised before but ... Read More
I chose this cruise thinking it would be lovely for my moms very first cruise. Honestly the ports of call sounded more appealing than a normal med cruise. And that was my main reason for picking this cruise line. I have cruised before but always with American ships (Carnival in particular)So was expecting high standards. In fairness the crew were very sweet and did everything they could to make the cruise enjoyable in particular the staff at embarkation and disembarkation very helpful to my elderly mother taking her hand on and off the ramp, Our waiter in the evening Dsilva Dolree did his very best to ensure our dining was pleasant. (The food was generally exceptionally disappointing) And our cabin crew lovely and helpful. My main complaints were food related. Bland at best and over salted at worst. The same Italian staples came out at lunch each day same sandwiches same hams cheeses etc. I understand its an Italian ship but they need to cater to those of us that are not Italian. We don`t all love tasteless over-salted pasta. Or a main course for dinner without vegetables. There was plenty of melon on board and plenty of apples and pineapple so I cannot complain about the fruit however a variety would be nice instead of same oh same oh at every lunch and breakfast. Most people go on a cruise for the food drink and entertainment. In all of these I`m afraid i found the Magica totally lacking. (I`m not a drinker so honestly didn't pay for a drinks package because it would have been a waste) hate to say this but will not use Costa again I think I will stick to the American cruises there is no comparison . they know how to entertain and how to put on beautiful edible meals. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
Selected Costa because was going where I wanted go and at exactly the right time. I chose a grand suite and it was very comfortable, included a butler, and specified dining in the exclusive 88 seat deck 11 dining room. Dining service ... Read More
Selected Costa because was going where I wanted go and at exactly the right time. I chose a grand suite and it was very comfortable, included a butler, and specified dining in the exclusive 88 seat deck 11 dining room. Dining service beautifully served and attended to; however, the quality of the food was only fair. Ship was too large for my liking and everything was extra. Bought the top drink package to avoid hassle of paying for water and drinks. WiFi quality OK but it was much too expensive. Could not find a free ice cream machine and had to pay 3€ per scope at the several spots that has ice cream. There we no talks about port stops, only pressure to buy ship excursions. Embarkation and disembarking procedjres were easy and swift. The attention and service to the grand suite customers was very good and much appreciated on such a large ship. Though announcements were either in four languages or only in Italian, the crew all spoke good English And were all very cordial. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Our fourth cruise with Costa (the second with Costa Magica) and, unfortunately, we have seen, over the years, a gradual decline in quality. Both cleanliness and services are maintained at good levels; the kitchen is on the decline. For the ... Read More
Our fourth cruise with Costa (the second with Costa Magica) and, unfortunately, we have seen, over the years, a gradual decline in quality. Both cleanliness and services are maintained at good levels; the kitchen is on the decline. For the entire duration of the cruise we had to avoid shrimp dishes because this crustacean was almost inedible. For the rest, average cuisine. As for the excursions, the two are excellent in St. Petersburg (although rather expensive), very bad that of Stockholm due to various disservices as well as an uneducated guide. It is opportune to emphasize that as an alternative to lunch, 90 minutes of free time have been "granted", from the most spent to bivouac on the steps of the buildings or on the benches of the main square of Stockholm, in order to consume the bad lunch basket, provided by Costa We have carried out, with an absolutely constructive spirit, the appropriate reports to the Customer Service, but finding a strenuous and sterile defense of office. La nostra quarta crociera con Costa ( la seconda con Costa Magica) e, purtroppo, abbiamo riscontrato, col passare degli anni, un progressivo calo della qualità. Si mantengono a buoni livelli sia la pulizia che i servizi; in calo invece la cucina. Per tutta la durata della crociera abbiamo dovuto evitare i piatti a base di gambero perchè tale crostaceo risultava quasi immangiabile. Per il resto cucina nella media. Per quanto riguarda le escursioni , ottime le due a San Pietroburgo ( anche se piuttosto care), pessima quella di Stoccolma a causa di vari disservizi oltre che di una Guida poco educata. Opportuno sottolineare che in alternativa al pranzo ci sono stati "concessi" 90 minuti di tempo libero, dai più trascorsi a bivaccare sui gradini dei palazzi o sulle panchine della principale piazza di Stoccolma, al fine di potere consumare il pessimo lunch basket, fornito dalla Costa, Abbiamo effettuato, con spirito assolutamente costruttivo, le opportune segnalazioni al Servizio Clienti riscontrando però una strenua quanto sterile difesa d'ufficio. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
The cruise itinerary was excellent, lots of time to explore some fascinating cities, and the value for money was reasonable. I was disappointed that none of the traditional Italian foods I was looking forward to like pizzas, gelato and ... Read More
The cruise itinerary was excellent, lots of time to explore some fascinating cities, and the value for money was reasonable. I was disappointed that none of the traditional Italian foods I was looking forward to like pizzas, gelato and coffee were included, all were extra costs. In addition, they lost my bag on disembarkation and made me trek around Stockholm trying to recover it, taking no responsibility for it - the tags they give you and say are needed to reclaim baggage are literally entirely pointless. One or two junior staff tried to assist but on the whole a really awful way to end the trip. Wifi is expensive and no maps or anything are ever provided so without the wifi package it's not easy to get around on your own - and the shuttles into town provided by the liner are ridiculously expensive. The ship itself was pretty nice, except that the slide never worked at all throughout, and most of the passengers were surprisingly pushy and rude. Most of the other people I spoke to who had been on other cruises said they wouldn't use Costa again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Choose this cruise because of departure port. Been in Suites on NCL Royal Caribbean and Princess. Food whilst good was ruined by very poor service. Drinks were particularly slow to come. On one occasion I sent my main course back (after ... Read More
Choose this cruise because of departure port. Been in Suites on NCL Royal Caribbean and Princess. Food whilst good was ruined by very poor service. Drinks were particularly slow to come. On one occasion I sent my main course back (after two previous courses I was still waiting for wine). Had to escalate issue to Maître De before obtaining any improvement. Same could have been said for bar service. On one occasion after 30 minutes gave up on a pre dinner drink. The boat itself was a bit tacky in its decorations two much obviously false roman architecture. Being only two of four English people on boat and only 2 of seventy English speaking passengers it created little or no choice for excursions. Any complaint was brushed over. The bath size in the suite was totally inadequate and the suite itself seemed small to others. We had to chase for our laundry return. The balcony was not well fitted for the class of cabin. Library was a joke. Whilst I would never travel Costa again I will continue to cruise on other ships. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Having cruised with MSC, Norwegian, Carnival and Royal Caribbean before plus one time with Costa, I can hardly be categorized as loyal to any particular cruise line. To me, any cruise is a good cruise and I always try to find the perfect ... Read More
Having cruised with MSC, Norwegian, Carnival and Royal Caribbean before plus one time with Costa, I can hardly be categorized as loyal to any particular cruise line. To me, any cruise is a good cruise and I always try to find the perfect match of itinerary and value for money. This Costa cruise included a number of interesting ports such as Tangier and Casablanca where we participated in excellent excursions offered by the ship. In Marseille, we walked about 900 metres and then took a local bus (no 38) to the city centre ( at 3.60 Euro for a day pass) - much cheaper than the shuttle bus offered by the ship. We then took another bus up to see the church Notre Dame de la garde from which there is a fabulous view of the old harbour. Furthermore, iif you do not mind walking, you can easily experience both !Lisbon and Cadiz on your own on foot. In recent years, Costa has limted the places where onboard smoking is permitted, which suits me fine. However, unless my memory fails me, they have also cut back on their buffet breakfast options, leaving out hot dishes such as scrambled egg and bacon. Consequently, you have to go to the restaurant in the morning if you want to have an international brakfast. However, if you choose to do so, you can both serve yourself from the buffet in the restaurant or order from a comprehensive menu of different types of breakfast items such as Belgian waffles, American pancakes and various omelettes. If you are back late onboard after having been ashore and are hungry, you will often have to stand in line for a long time at " The Grill" which on many days is the only place to get hot lunch options in the middle of the afternoon. On a more positive note, the various types of beef served in the main dining room in the evenings were all very delicious, and the menu never failed to offer something to my taste. I would, however, have welcomed "icecream" on the list of " always available" items. If you are a night owl you may be rather disappointed to find that the bars close rather early, and even the disco - which mostly semed tobe full of very young teens - stop serving the guests at 3 am. As on other cruises, many guests were up early hoarding sunbeds, but as Costa had limited the space between the sunbeds to sqeeze in as many beds as possible, I never had any problem finding a sunbed. Furthermore, unlike on MSC, no decks were reserved for frequent cruisers with special membership which again increased the possibility for finding a vacant sunbed. Costa is known as the budget cruise liner, but you should be aware that their service charges are as high as € 10 a day. Also, most cocktails cost € 7.45 (plus 15% service charge) which may make you consider opting for the Piu Guso beverage package ( € 29 a day). You can also get a beverage package of 40 softdrinks/ non-alcoholic cocktails for € 110. As on MSC, water is not offered for free in the restaurant, and coffee and tea is only available for breakfast and the afternoon snack. Furthermore, juice is only available in the morning. The fitness centre was larger than what we have experienced on most other ships, but unfortunately some of the machines did not work. We did not go to see more than a few of the shows in the theatre but instead spent several hours listening to a fantastic duo called "Gisele & Daniel" who performed each evening in the atrium on deck 3. Costa has really hit jackpot by signing on this charming and talented Brazilian couple who outperformed any duo we have ever listened to on our previous cruises. Weighing the pros against the cons, I think we got good value for money by choosing this Costa cruise. However, Costa is far from ever becoming our favourite cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
We like very much to dance during our journeys. That`s why we expected to enjoy of much international social dancing with good evergreen dance hits. Instead we had to follow presentations of experienced dancers, who took part in everyday ... Read More
We like very much to dance during our journeys. That`s why we expected to enjoy of much international social dancing with good evergreen dance hits. Instead we had to follow presentations of experienced dancers, who took part in everyday dance lessons. Music was performed by a duo and young dj`s. Most of the music was replays of the music played during the dance lessons including not so familiar dances like paso doble, wienerwaltz, mazurka, merengue, group dances, etc. We waited in vain to dance with the music of such superstars as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Elvis Presley and like. We think that we were not the only ones. Dance lessons belong to dance schools. In overall we were satisfied with the cruise. Costa Magica was as fine ship we expected. The personnel was friendly. The weather during the cruise was fine and we saw many interesting places. Especially satisfied we were with our cabin steward Mervin who was very friendly and helpful. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
I have only been on many Celebrity Cruises before and one P&O therefore I was geared up to expect a lower standard of cruise based on reviews I had read. This Costa cruise represents excellent value for money. The ship is clean and ... Read More
I have only been on many Celebrity Cruises before and one P&O therefore I was geared up to expect a lower standard of cruise based on reviews I had read. This Costa cruise represents excellent value for money. The ship is clean and well maintained. (When on Celebrity there was an outbreak of e-coli which was a pain and I felt Celebrity were thereafter over the top - couldn't even borrow library books!). The staff without exception were friendly and fun not like the obsequious staff on American ships! Nothing was too much trouble and always a smile. It was nice to spend the cruise with a mixture of nationalities, not a loud American in sight! ( I do however love Americans!) The food was not good. Occasional fish dish was ok. Buffet for breakfast and lunch was like a cattle market and very noisy. Entertainment was extremely average. Embarkation and disembarkation were very smooth and not at all chaotic as Celebrity had been. The off boat trips were very good particularly the trip to The Acropolis, top notch guide. Too short a time in each port. On the whole good value for money but will not go with Costa again as like to relax and have some luxuries. Read Less
Sail Date September 2014
As we got a good deal we decided to try Costa cruises. We have previously done NCL, RCCL, HAL, Celebrity, Carnival and MSC and after MSC we actually decided not to go fo a Italian cruise again. The MSC wold charge you for anytthing and not ... Read More
As we got a good deal we decided to try Costa cruises. We have previously done NCL, RCCL, HAL, Celebrity, Carnival and MSC and after MSC we actually decided not to go fo a Italian cruise again. The MSC wold charge you for anytthing and not much was included compared to the american ships - but money talks and we had the AI drink package included in our offer, which turned out to be excellent value. In order to help to understand the difference between the American shps and Costa I will try to make comparisons during the review. Enbarkation: Arriving at the port we delivered our luggage after having been in a line. At this point you get a boarding number, that should be used n the terminal later. The luggage delivery station was approximately 400 meters from the terminal, so you had to walk from the luggage delivery station to the terminal. At US ships you arrive at the ship and stewards are ready to take your luggage immediately at arrival - no line and not necessary to walk to the terminal. Arriving at the terminal you will wait until your assigned boarding number is called. Then you are put in a new line to wait for document checking. You don't deliver your credit card details here nor is your photo taken for your key card at this point (New lines for you is coming up). After the document checking a new long line is waiting for you for security check. Then you are on your way to board the shp, but has to pass to other lines: 1 for another document check and another line to get your photo taken. Finally on board you have 48 hours to provide your credita card details on the machines onboard. On US ships all of the previous is done at check-in and decrease the embarkation time significant. IT took us 2-3 hours from delivering the luggae to board the ship - area for improvement. The ship: The ship itself is beatiful and very well maintained. The decor is quite nice and italian which we did like, though it was difficult to navigate between the parts of the ships, as you could only pass from one end to the other on deck 5 -on deck 3 and 4 you have to go to deck 5 if you had to move from one end to another. Cabin: We had balcony cabin 9281, which had an excellent location, as it was near the elevators, lido, buffet and bar. There was no noise from the public areas. The cabin itself was slight wider than on the US ships, so you felt that the cabin was larger than on US ships. It was in good condition and had quit hard beds (Which I liked. Restaurant & food: Well this is where the big difference between Costa and US ships really is big. If you want decent food you HAVE to eat in the main restaurants at your specific seating, as the alternative buffet was nearly none exiting. We tried to the buffet one evening and it was a huge mistake: They only have slad and poor poor quality pizza (2 flavours). The pizzas was the worst we have had ever - there was barely no toppings on these, so I would compare those to a flat bread with a bit of cheese and oil on the top - very poor. On US ships you have a broad variaty of dishes during the evening buffet which are very tasty. While at the buffet, there is the usual stuff for breakfast including an omelet station. The variaty is OK, but not as much as on US ships. For lunch it was OK, though it was limited variaty. On US ships you can have Limonade, fruit punch, ice tea or water throughout the day - on Costa you are offered water only, so you had to get other drinks from the bar. There are only very limited personnel to deliver the drinks for you so you will have to line up at the bars to get your drinks. You can also choose to have dinner in the speciality restaurant but did not try that (25 cover charge). The quality of the food in the main restaurant was so so. Sometimes quite delicious - at other times no taste at all. My wife ordered steak on evening and got a small flat piece of dry meat and approximately 30 french fries - that was all. Portions are small and the variaty are again limited compared to US ships. The US ships will beat Costa by far on the food choices, quantity and quality - so don't go Costa if food is a priority for you. Pools: If you don't have kids - forget the pools - they are really overcrowded with kids so it is impossible to have a swim or even to find a spare spot where you can dip. Fellow pasangers: Mainly italians, where you can expect that they smoke more than average, though smoking was not an issue for us - nor inside or outside. You are allowed to smoke in one side of the ship, but the italians smoke all over the ship. On US ships you have very limited smoking and yoiur fellow passangers are US, which we prefer instead of the quite selfish and noisy italians. Drinks: Hey this is great if you are on the AI package. You can order any drinks from the barmenu - except those with a star. The list of drinks available on AI is large and they deliver great drinks including Pina Colada, Daquiries etc. You can also have specialty coffee on the AI package, but not freshly squizzed juice. Other points - Don't expect all the "extra" service you get on the US ships. - The time you are in port is very limited (5 hours or so) compared to the US ships where you will have the most of a day in port. Entertainment: We did see a show or 2 and liked what we saw. We actually prefer the shows on the italian ships compared to the shows on US ships, as the singers and dancers perform very well. At the US ships it seems like the singers try their best to be the new star like Whitney Houston, Tom Jones etc and it becomes often ofthe a pain to listen too. We prefer if the US singers would relax a bit more and just be themselves. Would we go Costa again? - not sure even if we felt that it was a better deal than going with MSC. We prefer US ships as you get better overall deals when you include service, quality, quantity and fellow passengers   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
Costa Magica was my fifth cruise and I am not going to compare it to Celebrity or NCL. Just my opinion of the Cruise ex Venice. This was my second time on a Costa Cruise, it was a surprise treat for my sister and the value and the ... Read More
Costa Magica was my fifth cruise and I am not going to compare it to Celebrity or NCL. Just my opinion of the Cruise ex Venice. This was my second time on a Costa Cruise, it was a surprise treat for my sister and the value and the itinerary was excellent. First of all I warned my sister that my last Embarkation/Check-In at Venice was a nightmare, upon arrival this time nothing had changed. Chaotic is the word to use so we sat in the organised and pleasant adjacent terminal where the Princess Cruise Passengers were greeted and checked in swiftly and professionally, was great to watch. We waited for our Boarding number to be called and went to the queue if you can call it that, the passengers didn't really queue you just push your way through. We were on board within 2 - 3 hrs from the time of bag drop. The ship was late departing, again but the daytime sail out of Venice is stunning, there was no sail out party. Before we travelled I called to change our Cabin as I booked a Premium Inside, for higher deck and location. They allocated Deck 2! I was changed to Deck 6. I was asked what dinner service I would like, I said late please. The initial greeting is lame and then you are left to your own devices. Never introduced to cabin attendant. The Cabins overall are fine except for the really old tv s and the remote control that sometimes works. I prepaid for all inclusive so we went for our first celebration drink only to be told that we were not all inclusive and to go to customer service to change your card. Went and joined the massive queue there only to be told to go back to the bar and ask them to stick a sticker on your room card to say you were all inclusive, what a hassle. Had to show confirmation that I prepaid all inclusive just unprofessional. The dinner service allocated was early, so back to queue to change, hassle. First night dinner service was dire, it was like pulling teeth to get conversation and all the guests did was brag about themselves, we changed table for the rest of the duration and what great couples / fun we had. Miserable waiter, you were lucky to get two glasses of wine and he would not leave the bottle on the table. All inclusive? The first night in the cabin was noisy as I didn't realise they put us in a cabin right above the atrium with the live awful band with an accordion player, the bunk beds above our twin beds kept on creaking and rattling all night. The next day I asked to change Cabins and was pointed to a sign saying that the the ship was full and there was nothing they could do. At dinner the lovely couple next to us told us they had to change cabin, no problem. I just fixed the bunk beds myself and had ear plugs for the nightly late live music until at least 1am. I was not going to let it spoil the cruise. The pools are full of kids, so you can only go in for a dip, the hot tubs although signs up saying not for kids were ignored, nothing was enforced. The breakfast, lunch service at the restaurant can be abrupt and you and directed to sit with strangers. The buffet is a bizarre experience, rude manager, I tried to get a coffee at 1045 as breakfast does not finish until 11am only to be told we are now CLOSED FOR LUNCH PREPARATION! Lunchtime buffet experience is like a school canteen more queues, crap pizza and just a poor selection of food. My main complaint is lack of HYGIENE on the ship, there are hardly any hand disinfectants and some were empty and to be honest I hardly saw anyone use them, this put me off, if I ever read of novo virus on a Costa ship I will know why. It was the same on my last Costa Cruise and I want them to address this. At ports when boarding don't expect any cold towels, water or again hand disinfectants when boarding. There were kids everywhere on the ship and walking around late at night midnight/1am or sleeping on seats in the Casino, couples walking with push chairs....just bizarre. To summarize the crew/service were inconsistent but we had our favourites and tipped but the ports of call was the main draw. Would I recommend the cruise, yes, only if you get a good value pronto price, if you have patience, get a decent cabin and don't expect too much. Also you have to pay for ironing, you cannot request an iron and do it yourself or bring a travel iron on board. The all inclusive is deff worth it! so that's a good tip. Don't accept the gross cheap wine at dinner ask for a pinot grigio or whatever you like, there is a limited choice. In the bars you can order unlimited prosecco, very good, cocktails, spirits, beers, bottles of water etc. so highly recommend. Excellent ports of call but you have limited time so make the most of it. Disembarkation we took our own cases off so could leave when we wanted to. Good mix of guests, mainly European friendly and you can practice your Italian, French, Spanish, mingle. I can't remember the amount of British, Canadians, Americans, Australians on board approx 300? or more. This is just my opinion and experience. I am a travel agent of 17 years so I like to travel independently. To be honest the Excursions were not extortionate and glad we took the excursion in Santorini. Read Less
Sail Date June 2013
My wife and on went on the Western Mediterranean cruise aboard Costa Magica in March this year (see previous review). We spotted a bargain priced 10 day cruise on Magica around Northern Europe and decided to take the plunge. This ... Read More
My wife and on went on the Western Mediterranean cruise aboard Costa Magica in March this year (see previous review). We spotted a bargain priced 10 day cruise on Magica around Northern Europe and decided to take the plunge. This was probably our last Costa cruise. The ship called at Dover so we were expecting a few more brits this time, but there were apparently only about 80 aboard so in a distinct minority. This cruise appeared even more geared up to the Italians. Announcements were made in 6 european languages with English following up the rear and sometimes not at all. As before, the Italians were loud, rude and pushy so be warned! We were on Deck 6 Caravaggio which is a bad place to be. If you have a cabin in the central block above the Salento Grand Bar change it. We were in 6297 and directly above the stage so we could hear Bingo calling and the loud thud of eurobeat music until 1.30 each morning. There was also a continual loud vibration. You won't get an early night in any of these rooms. Another problem with this ship is the lack of designated smoking areas and the lack of decent ventilation. Both the bars at the rear of the ship allowed smoking so there was no escape. The 'air con' seems to kick in once an hour but is not very efficient. The restaurants in particular get very hot. Maybe the Italians like it that way but we found it very uncomfortable. If you fancy watching TV forget it. The only English speaking channel is BBC world news. We didn't fancy any of the theatre shows this time and our English companions said most were dire. We were fortunate on this cruise to find an English guitarist Ron who kept us entertained in one of the bars. Pity the cruise director decided to alternate him every hour with a classical duo playing violin and piano. We enjoyed some of the ports of call but unless you are a committed europhile and can withstand the general mayhem recommend avoiding Costa. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
My wife and on went on the Western Mediterranean cruise aboard Costa Magica in March this year (see previous review). We spotted a bargain priced 10 day cruise on Magica around Northern Europe and decided to take the plunge. This ... Read More
My wife and on went on the Western Mediterranean cruise aboard Costa Magica in March this year (see previous review). We spotted a bargain priced 10 day cruise on Magica around Northern Europe and decided to take the plunge. This was probably our last Costa cruise. The ship called at Dover so we were expecting a few more brits this time, but there were apparently only about 80 aboard so in a distinct minority. This cruise appeared even more geared up to the Italians. Announcements were made in 6 european languages with English following up the rear and sometimes not at all. As before, the Italians were loud, rude and pushy so be warned! We were on Deck 6 Caravaggio which is a bad place to be. If you have a cabin in the central block above the Salento Grand Bar change it. We were in 6297 and directly above the stage so we could hear Bingo calling and the loud thud of eurobeat music until 1.30 each morning. There was also a continual loud vibration. You won't get an early night in any of these rooms. Another problem with this ship is the lack of designated smoking areas and the lack of decent ventilation. Both the bars at the rear of the ship allowed smoking so there was no escape. The 'air con' seems to kick in once an hour but is not very efficient. The restaurants in particular get very hot. Maybe the Italians like it that way but we found it very uncomfortable. If you fancy watching TV forget it. The only English speaking channel is BBC world news. We didn't fancy any of the theatre shows this time and our English companions said most were dire. We were fortunate on this cruise to find an English guitarist Ron who kept us entertained in one of the bars. Pity the cruise director decided to alternate him every hour with a classical duo playing violin and piano. We enjoyed some of the ports of call but unless you are a committed europhile and can withstand the general mayhem recommend avoiding Costa. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
I chose this cruise exclusively because of the ports. Did not have big expectations on Costa cruise lines, the price was not a bargain, but the itinerary and dates matched our needs, so there we went... Right from the beginning, ... Read More
I chose this cruise exclusively because of the ports. Did not have big expectations on Costa cruise lines, the price was not a bargain, but the itinerary and dates matched our needs, so there we went... Right from the beginning, embarkation process was an awful mess, 3 and half hours sat(at the floor) of the crowded terminal. There were 2 boarding gates, we watched the other gate, embarking for the Costa Pacifica, finished the process and ship departed. While the Magica was still calling mid-numbers, finally the Pacifica staff crossed the hall to help the Magica, and after almost 4 hours waiting, (no complimentary food, no water), we finally got on the ship. The ship is in good condition, however, the decor was sort of odd, to say the least. The layout is also strange, not easy to navigate. The light "arms" that decorates the Bellagio buffet is among the ugliest things I have ever seen, also found the Smeralda Dining room tacky. Cabins: Big,(bigger than same category cabins compared to all the other cruise ships I have been), comfortable, good bedding, our stewardess, Epi, was very attentive and not intrusive, excellent! Food: The Buffet overall: poor quality, everyday was the same. no assortment of fruits, the salads were OK. No buffet at night! only pizza... And the water, ice, ice cream stations were always broken. The station coffee was horrible! Of course you can buy espressos and cappuccinos,(I did), 1,7 € each. The dining room had better food, nothing to die for, just OK, edible, second seating ALWAYS opened late, we had to wait outside the dining room for 10 to 15 minutes every night, quite annoying... This has been my first and last Costa, Next time I go to Europe, I will cruise Norwegian or RC. Read Less
Sail Date April 2010
My husband and I flew from New Orleans.We stayed for 1 night at the Comfort Inn Air/Cruise Ports and we were very happy with the free shuttle service.  We were impressed with Costa's quick and easy check in service and went right up ... Read More
My husband and I flew from New Orleans.We stayed for 1 night at the Comfort Inn Air/Cruise Ports and we were very happy with the free shuttle service.  We were impressed with Costa's quick and easy check in service and went right up to the buffet for lunch.  The buffet was satisfactory,but limited in choices.  We had plenty of time to explore the ship before sailing and I must say it is a beautiful ship with marble floors and many works of art.  We booked the cheapest cabin,but it was very nice.  Larger than the cabins on Royal Caribbean and identical to the cabin we had on Carnival Conquest(4A).  The mandatory drill was long since the announcement had to be made in several languages.  There were many Europeans on board and they weren't as courteous as the North Americans and the Brits.The Italian crew was very nice and I enjoyed the socializing with the entertainment crew.  This was a very sedate cruise,however.Bring a book and a deck of cards.The shows were very amateurish-actually pathetic. As for the food,steaks were usually good,desserts were mediocre,pastas were usually undercooked and seafood dishes would sometimes have squid and octopus in them.Food is not available 24 hours a day like Carnival so check the schedule or you may go hungry for awhile.My favorite part of the ship is the gym which is very well equipped. Another favorite was having espresso deliver to my cabin every morning free of charge. Our first stop was in Nassau and the Atlantis Resort on Paradise Island is a quick hop over by water taxi.It's an impressive resort with a casino and Aquarium.Then we went to Bermuda where we were met by the first tropical storm of the season.The ship must have great stabilizers because it hardly rocked.So we docked a day late and amazingly they still did the Dolphin Encounter in the rain and cold-I wouldn't recommend it even in good weather.It was in the Maritime Museum which had an ugly depressing wall around it.After several days at sea,we arrived at the Azores.We hired a taxi and for 100euros he took us all over the island.We had the best adventure of our trip at a fraction of what the ship was charging.By the way,the ship also charges in euros-in the casino,in the shops,for the excursions,for drinks and per diem tips.A few more days at sea and we reached Le Harve.I took the excursion to the Louvre Museum with lunch on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower-156 euros-expensive,but worth it.It's Paris!My husband took the Normandy excursion-115 euros-he loved it.Don't miss your shuttle bus or they will leave you to find your way back.We left a family in Paris because they were late.Although the ship went to Copenhagen,we wanted to spend more time in England,so we disembarked in Dover.We tried to exchange currency before leaving the ship,but the ships bank was closed and they scheduled our disembarkment before it opened. No problem going through British Customs and we found a place to exchange currency at the port.Took a taxi to Dover Priority train station,6pounds.Bought tickets to London Victoria Station,15.90 pounds each And about a 2 hour ride.It came as a surprise to me that I'd have to pay to use the restroom at Victoria Station-20 pence.I bought a travelcard in London which gave us unlimited use of the bus,subway,&trains in London.We stayed at a nice B&B called the Grange for 65 pounds a night.Nice,but a little out of the way.Everything went great on our vacation until we reached the airport when British Airways cancelled my reservation.I bought round trip ticket that cost less than one way,but since I didn't use the fist half,they cancelled the whole thing without a refund.So we had to buy another ticket which made our vacation very expensive.We'll never use British Airways again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2007
My husband and I sailed, along with friends, the Costa Magica transatlantic May 4-20, Ft. Lauderdale-Copenhagen. Before I start the review, I want to make clear that we definitely got our dollars worth since this was an extremely ... Read More
My husband and I sailed, along with friends, the Costa Magica transatlantic May 4-20, Ft. Lauderdale-Copenhagen. Before I start the review, I want to make clear that we definitely got our dollars worth since this was an extremely inexpensive cruise, including airfare at $1400 pp. We embarked in Ft. Lauderdale. We have been through that port several times, as usual the embarkation was a breeze and we were on the ship very quickly. My first clue that we were in for an 'interesting' voyage: as soon as we got through the door, I asked one of the staff a question, got a blank stare. Didn't understand me. Oh boy. Got to our cabin, we had an inside on the lowest deck, which was fine, it was sufficient. I must say our steward was excellent. First night out we were pretty tired as we had flown to Ft. Lauderdale from LAX and it was just a long day. The first couple days were non eventful. Nassau was fine, been there, done that. We had a sea day and a half to arrive in Bermuda, we were supposed to dock at 6 p.m. Weather was rough and our ship could not get into the port safely, so I guess we bobbed along out there all night. Next morning we were able to dock,we had a very nice day touring Hamilton and the beaches, on our own. We took the city bus all day for $5, what a deal. I highly recommend it. The next few days is when it gets really interesting. We knew that every announcement would be made in no less than 5 languages, but no matter what you think...it gets really, really annoying. We like to do trivia on sea days, I gave up after the 2nd day...the cruise staff conducting the trivia could not pronounce the words. They couldn't spell the words. We didn't know what we were supposed to be trivia-ing about. And when they asked the trivia question, it was also in 5 languages. Most activities were very unorganized at the least. I kept wondering why there was always a long line at the purser's desk, day and night. I later figured it out. Our first issue happened a week into the trip. We, and our friends, got notices in our room to come to the shore excursion desk regarding the excursion we had booked in Copenhagen before we flew back to the states. My girlfriend had RUN to the desk when she boarded the first day to sign us up as the Costa website was impossible to navigate. Anyway, seems the staff had decided to only offer our excursion in Italian ONLY. Mind you, we had been signed up for a week already and now they are telling us this? We asked if more Americans, or english speaking passengers signed up for this particular excursion in the next few days, would they offer it in English. No, only Italian. We could go on the Italian bus, uh duh. No. I was pretty ticked off at this point, and I said, why did i t take you a week to decide to eliminate the English speaking bus, sounds like discrimination to me. She just looked at me and said, 'Well, this is an Italian ship. Well, my Euro is as green as their Euro. There was another excursion that was similar that we could sign up for, but it was more money. We suggested that they give us that excursion for the same price as the one we had originally signed up for. Nope, couldn't do that. Ok, so we just signed up for it because we really needed an excursion that would get us to the airport. Mind you again, language problems here. Long story short, over the next week there was a major screwup with our tickets our friends got theirs, we got one at a much lower price, and then didn't get a second one for us. The staff was basically just rude to us and 'oh well'. We got fed up toward the end of the 2nd week so we wrote a note to the Captain asking to meet with him at his convenience. Well, the last day of the cruise we did just that. The Hotel Director escorted us to his quarters. The Captain was truly annoyed and I am sure that Hotel Director's goose was cooked as this really should have been handled at his level. Well, the Captain agreed with us on this issue of cost and told the Director to fix it. This price issue did not get fixed until we were out of our cabins to disembark and my husband had to hunt down the shore excursion people as we were still short a ticket. We finally got the missing ticket, but none of this should have even happened. Most evenings there were activities...one night was 'Carnivale'. What a mess. In one area, there were 3 cruise staffers making venetian masks. Taking a plain white mask, drizzling glue on it, then glitter. Not a big deal. You would have thought they were giving out money. Oh my, I have never seen so much shoving and pushing and rudeness ever. Where the staff messed up was they should have had a roped off line, one at a time. One woman got so upset with one of the staffer, for no reason that I could figure out, the poor girl started crying. Oh come on, its a cruise. My friend and I gave up. It wasn't a big deal for us, but give something away and true bullying comes out. The evening before we got to Dover, England we were having dinner and a couple at the table next to us came in to dinner. The man was extremely upset, so we asked him what happened. He had just come from the pursers desk. Seems that a couple from England they had met on board asked them that day if they had received their invitation to the farewell Captain's private gala for passengers disembarking in Dover. Well, no so our friend went to the pursers desk and they told him that the gala was for 'all passengers except Americans'. I am not kidding. He said he told them that he wasn't American, he was Canadian, but what would it matter if they were American? No answer. This confirmed to us that there was truly discrimination against Americans. I expected that in our ports in Europe, but not on the ship. Shopping on board was poor. Not that I cruise to shop, but it was really bad. They sold amber jewelry almost everyday outside one of the shops, expensive. No sales on anything, very small sundries area to buy aspirin, etc. I was glad I had brought all that stuff myself because I wouldn't have found it there. Adding insult to us, they had part of one shop 'closed' off. The windows were wide open, not papered over or anything so you could see in the closed off section. The whole last week they were setting up that part of the shop for the Baltic cruises after ours. There were some lovely things in there, so my friend asked the manager if they were going to open that shop to us during the cruise and she was told that another manager was getting on board in Paris, then they would open it. Well, it never opened. I know it's not a big deal, just say no, it's not going to open , not for this cruise. End of discussion. And they really should have papered over those windows, we weren't the only ones looking in there longingly.. Unfortunately, two days before the end, I got quite sick. I went to the ship dr. the day before we got to Copenhagen, he was Italian, and of course, could not speak English. What else is new. So somehow I managed to tell him what was wrong..I walked out of there with 3 days worth of antibiotics, amoxicillin, and generic cough syrup. That will be $44 Euros, ma'am (approx $60 usd). I got back to the cabin and looked at those pills. I am allergic to penicillin and told him so. My husband took the pills down there and they said, no problem, ok to take. Uh huh, right. I'm so glad none of our party had a real emergency, that would have been really scary. I ended up going to my dr. a couple days after we got home as I wasn't much better. She could not believe they gave me those pills. She was glad I didn't have an allergic reaction. And you always give out at least a 10 day course of pills. Disembarkation in Copenhagen. Well, that was a fine mess. As everyone needed to be out of their cabins by 8 a.m. we went to the main theatre with our hand carry luggage to wait. It got crazy. One of our cruise critic members had been on board with her 9 year old son, who is probably the most mature and polite 9 year old I have ever met. In the theatre that morning, all of a sudden we hear this ruckus...As our friend and her son were coming into the theatre, this woman and her husband literally shoved our friend out of the way, when our friend complained to them about it, the husband came back and punched her. No kidding. Security was standing right there, did nothing. We couldn't believe it, a man hitting a mom. The ship was full of Europeans, mostly germans, and this couple was a german couple. Unfortunately, most of the Europeans we had dealing with were bossy, pushy and rude. Anyway, our friend was ok, but what the heck! We didn't buy many drinks onboard. Cocktails were more expensive than on any ship I had been on before, and sodas were expensive too. Brought our own sodas on board, so that helped. What we did love: The meals were for the most part really good. We had heard a lot of complaints before hand that they didn't know how to cook beef. Karen and I almost always had the beef if it was offered, it was tender and delicious. Lots of Pasta. Some of the main dishes were kind of weird combinations. Lots of Anchovies. Anchovy sauce, anchovies on salad, I guess if you like anchovies its ok. Not to our taste. The ports were wonderful. The Azores are absolutely beautiful, we had a wonderful excursion to Paris and also to London. Copenhagen was nice, what we saw of it. We never did see the Little Mermaid statue that was supposed to be on our tour so we were disappointed. All in all a good value for the money. I don't think we would cruise with Costa again, but if a great deal pops up,who knows. Oh one last thing. No toga party. Everyone in our cruise critic group had brought fabrics, etc...to create togas. We were told there would be a toga party. I think most of our group was disappointed. My husband wasn't very happy to have to haul that stuff home. Well, the fabric will make great kitchen curtains, I guess. Read Less
Sail Date May 2007
Couldn't wait to try the Costa Cruise line. This cruise was our 5th. Positives: Ship was very clean and Grand Suite was spacious. Both our Butler, Emil and room stewardess El were great, friendly and very accommodating. Costa took ... Read More
Couldn't wait to try the Costa Cruise line. This cruise was our 5th. Positives: Ship was very clean and Grand Suite was spacious. Both our Butler, Emil and room stewardess El were great, friendly and very accommodating. Costa took pristine care of their ship the Magica. Major problems: Luggage handling was atrocious. We were on the 7th floor and for 4 hours could not use the stairs or the elevators. They stacked luggage sky high and close to exit access. This could have been a serious "hazard violation". Some of the people we were traveling with, their luggage went to another floor, even though it was properly labeled. Because we paid extra to stay in the Grand Suite, we had been invited to a special captains cocktail party. That was the worst we've been too. The Captain seemed cold and impersonal as he greeted each individual in line (approximately 30 people). He didn't even look at you; he pulled your hand along through the line. How demeaning! How Rude - Costa should pay attention to this. This ship was not properly equipped to support some of the older handicapped folks with walkers and wheelchairs. Costa should seriously consider doing more for the handicapped type people. This slowed down some of the other passengers who were not at this stage yet. Had I known this cruise was for older seasoned passengers, I would not have booked this cruise. Negatives: The ship was understaffed. Our two waiters hustled many tables and every night worked up a sweat (hope it didn't drop in my food) Bar service in the restaurant was terribly slow. Food service was slow and served luke warm. Costa wasted their budget nightly on serving rolls that were like bricks - not appetizing and "old". Casino checkout had only one window open. Service in Casino was very slow, again very short staffed. Food was very poor in quality. Some of the restaurant (Smeralda) staff were not friendly - especially 2 of the maitre d's at first seating - very rude and gave you the impression they didn't really want to be there and could care less about you. Getting off and back on ship - was very disorganized, especially the return because only one check-in was open and lines were several hundred people deep. No maps of the ship layout were available. Hardly any clocks aboard ship especially for time zone changes. Three nights while being docked in Bermuda and Nassau, no water from 1:00am to 6:00am. Conflicting information - at customer service desk - staff were not friendly, language barrier was so bad, most of staff didn't either understand you or gave you incorrect information. Three times we were locked out of our room. Cards stopped working. There are no house phones easily accessible on the floors. Even some of the staff didn't know where they were located. Finally, there were charges for everything. I wanted to do my own laundry and couldn't, had to pay for that. No ironing services, had to pay for that, and extra charges (3%) on anything you charged to your room. Read Less
Sail Date April 2007
This was our 28th cruise. We usually cruise with Celebrity, Princess and Royal Caribbean. The best parts of the cruise that went really smoothly were embarkation and debarkation! I wish it was like that on all cruises. Although it seems ... Read More
This was our 28th cruise. We usually cruise with Celebrity, Princess and Royal Caribbean. The best parts of the cruise that went really smoothly were embarkation and debarkation! I wish it was like that on all cruises. Although it seems that in Ft Lauderdale they have things better organized. On this cruise we wound up getting bowls of soft ice cream every night, going back to our cabin and watching TV. We really felt sorry for the help on the ship, I spoke with our cabin steward and he told me how a few years ago they started cutting back on help, and giving them more work to do. To give you and idea, our room steward was alone, taking care of 23 cabins! He was always running around from one end of the hallway to the other end. He said he used to have time to do the little nice things that guests like but now there was just no time. He kept our room presentable and even seemed to do a better job of it after we talked. The beds had 4 inch mattresses on a metal frame and so hard and uncomfortable, pillows were flat and hard, one per person, finally able to get 2 pillows. I picked up a pillow and my finger went thru the casing. The beds were only made with the sheets, no bed spreads. The dining room, our waiter and asst. were so slow that our table mates complained to the maitre' D, but then we found out that our waiters had 22 people/4 tables to take care of. They also had long lines to wait for the food because of the 2 different restaurants using the same kitchen at the same time. Water and iced tea was only given at beginning of meal, one night I only had 1 glass of water and nothing else. If you asked for more you would usually wait and if lucky got a refill. Food was never hot or cold, just warm for everything even the ice cream was melting. And the food, was not good, almost everyone we spoke to or over heard were saying the same things. So it just wasn't us. Or our group of friends we had made. Prime rib was a very thin slice of roast beef you would use on a sandwich. So many of the sauces, gravies and dressings were watered down, they had no flavor to them. Desserts and breads were either stale, dry, or no taste. I could go on complaining about the food but I will stop. DH called the desk to find out when they were going to clean the glass on the balcony so we could see out of it. From the salt spray on the previous cruise, everything on the balcony was covered in salt. It did not get "cleaned" until Wednesday afternoon. The reason for asking to clean the glass because the chairs on the balcony were so low you had to look thru the glass to see anything if seated. The cabins were cool and then warm, never stayed comfortable. Packed elevators of grouchy people, complaining about the ship and food, and just about everything else. . For 4 nights we had no water on the ship, they had to work on the plumbing, so no coffee or showers in the mornings, we wonder how the service people showered and washed their hands before preparing our food. Our toilet wouldn't flush at times, just gurgled, that was fun...No hand dispensers anywhere on the ship, only a towelette when we first boarded .... The shows were so crowded and we never watched a complete show, our local theater has better shows than what was offered. If you have a balcony cabin these are doors not sliders, and all day and night you heard the doors slamming and would shake the room, it was terrible. Luggage delivery to the cabins was a jumbled mess, dumped in the middle of the elevator area and a lot of people didn't get their luggage until later that first night. Neighbors said they found their luggage on another floor. The buffet was the same breakfast foods, and lunch foods, every day, nothing different. The omelet station was the only place you got a hot breakfast made fresh. DH saw a lady stick her finger into a cereal to see if it was hot or cold. They also had a pasta station for lunch, from what we heard it was leftovers from the night before. We had lunch in the dining room once, and the same problems as for dinner service. We felt so bad for our cabin steward after speaking with him, and finding out how Costa has cut staff and now that they put the tips on automatically, the help get a smaller amount and the bosses get more tips. So we tipped our steward in an envelope and had the auto tipping removed immediately. I could go on and on but will say ship looked pretty clean, and some of the staff were nice but there is a language barrier which causes even more problems. We enjoyed Bermuda, although it is expensive to live there. Also for people with walking disabilities, it is a hard place to get around in. The best thing to do for us was take the ferries and buses to get around the towns. Our weather was perfect, couldn't have asked for better. We met some really nice people but will now stick to the cruise lines we know we enjoy. If you have any questions just ask. Read Less
Sail Date April 2007
This is my review for the April 15th cruise on Costa to Bermuda. Embarkation went smoothly, because they now take an imprint of your credit card when you first check in. After we ate at the buffet we went to our room and we were happy to ... Read More
This is my review for the April 15th cruise on Costa to Bermuda. Embarkation went smoothly, because they now take an imprint of your credit card when you first check in. After we ate at the buffet we went to our room and we were happy to see our luggage there, We had good luck getting a good room steward, who brought us the mattress toppers, extra towels and blankets. The trouble began with an electrical problem that caused a delay in leaving. We couldn't use many of the toilets, and we were asked not to use the elevators. The weather was bad and the ship moved alot. We ended up with 5 days at sea and only one day in Bermuda. Of course that is not the captains fault. There were a lot of complaints about the food. My husband who will eat cereal for dinner, hated the food. The beef dishes were very tough. A lot of the food tasted the way you wouldn't expect it. Either rare, or not cooked enough. We were lucky we had a wonderful waiter. My experience was that the service I received was very good. Max and his group of entertainers were wonderful. Most of the passengers were Floridians, and were average age 70 yrs old. The weather caused us to be at sea 5 days out of the seven. The pools were also closed most of the time. Leaving the ship was easy and parking at pier 21 was very easy. Many passengers wrote there reviews in the Costa board star. Read Less
Sail Date April 2007
So after reading all the bad reviews I tried to keep an open mind about my vacation. My aunt had been an a Costa cruise before (not Magica) and said it was fabulous. Since it was Easter and my entire family was going (mom, dad, sisters who ... Read More
So after reading all the bad reviews I tried to keep an open mind about my vacation. My aunt had been an a Costa cruise before (not Magica) and said it was fabulous. Since it was Easter and my entire family was going (mom, dad, sisters who are 18 and 20), grandmother, aunt and my boyfriend (we are both 24), I decided to go. Embarkation: When we all arrived, I thought it was going to be a breeze going through security since there wasn't a line of cars getting into the terminal. As we stood in line, it seemed as if everyone was allowed to cut in front of us. Everytime we were getting ready to go through security, someone else came up and jumped in front. Once we got through security, we than stood in line for another hour. The woman helping us was very nice, but by that time I was already irritated. Well I can't say everything was bad, unless you consider all the rude Europeans which consisted of 95% of the staff and cruisers. After we got to our room, our cabin steward was extremely nice and showed us around the room and where things were. We than decided to walk around the ship which was the most confusing ship I have ever been on. I have been on three cruise ships before this one and always knew my way around by the second or third day. When we were getting off the ship, I still got lost. There is only one floor that went all the way across making it very difficult to get where you wanted to go. The maps were useless. They were all in italian/or numbers. After going around the ship, we figured our luggage would be there. Well it wasn't. I went around the corner on our hall and there was a HUGE pile of suitcases. I managed to find mine and my boyfriends luggage so I just took it. If I had not taken it, I wouldn't have gotten it until almost 9pm (actually when my sister did). After getting our luggage, we went on the top deck to watch the boat take off. We decided ahead of time to get the X1, which allows you to drink unlimited (only beer, wine, soda, and water) during lunch and dinner. Now make sure it is the right time according to whomever is serving you, because I think we still never got a straight answer on when and where we were allowed to get the unlimited drinks. I decided at 7pm (dinner started at 7:30pm, but I was told 7pm by customer service) to get a drink at the outside grill. The ordered two beers thinking they were free. I asked him why he charged me and he said it wasn't free until 7pm. I told him I did not want them anymore and proceeded to get harassed by another bartender. I took the drinks and left and was than "cat called" as you would say by the rest of the bartenders. My father went to customer service where they did nothing. So if you like to be around rude, harassing staff, this is the cruise for you. Dining: The food was actually not bad depending on what you ordered. As the reviews said before, the pasta is amazing!!! It was prepared right in front of you during the lunch hours and they always had something different. The seafood was very fishy (except the shrimp cocktail) so I would stay away from that. Meat: The red meats were not very good, but the chicken dishes were very good. The soups and salads were great (especially the Caesar salad). The grill outside had your usual burgers, pizza, fries which were better than I expected. Overall, the food was better than the other cruises I had been on. Service: The only three people that I can say I liked on the ship were our cabin steward, our waiter and our drink waiter. They were the nicest people and were always very accommodating. Our drink waiter always had our drinks ready when we got to dinner and we never had to ask the rest of the trip (unless you wanted something different than the norm). Everyone else on the cruise could barely speak English and were very rude. The photographers were horrible and very rude when picking out and paying for pictures. The photographers didn't even make sure everyone was in the picture before they snapped the camera. Every other cruise line, the photographers at least act like they are professionals. Ports/Excursions: The first place we went to was Cozumel which was ok. My boyfriend and I did the snorkel and clear kayak excursion which was nice, but way over priced. We paid $62 per person for both the snorkel and kayak which included the taxi. If you paid for everything separately and did everything on your own, it would have been $31 per person ($7 for cab, $12 for snorkel, and $12 for kayak). The snorkeling was neat, but the kayak was boring and not worth it. Next, we went to Grand Cayman which I had been before and boy was that a disaster. The boat has to dock out in the ocean, so we had to take a tender to shore. The water was extremely rough to say the least and took almost 45 minutes to dock. We decided to just go to the 7 mile beach which was a $4 cab ride per person. The beach was so unbelievably crowded so we had to walk down the beach to find open space. The drinks at the beach bar were $10 a drink which was not worth it either. On the way back out to the boat, the cruisemen ended up not tying the tender tight enough to the boat so we kept crashing into the cruise ship. It hit so hard one time, the window broke. I know it was not there fault because the water was so rough, but they didn't say anything to anyone. People were screaming, and kids were crying. It was a mess. Jamaica was fun! We went to Dunn's Falls which I highly recommend. The only downfall were the amount of people trying to climb the falls at one time. We also went white water rafting which was very cool! A little suspicious, but well worth it. Grand Turk was by far my favorite. We had this little island all to ourselves (the boat I mean) and the water was gorgeous. This was a nice relaxing day on the beach. Disembarkation: A breeze. I wish embarkation was as nice. Overall: I won't go on another Costa cruise line ever again. I have been on Royal Caribbean which was phenomenal, Celebrity which was very good, and Norwegian which I don't recommend either. Next cruise won't be for a long time. Read Less
Sail Date April 2007
We traveled on the Costa Magica the week of March 18th as part of a mid size group, there were 7 of us in my immediate family in 2 cabins (2 kids - 1 yr old and 4 yrs old). Our Western Caribbean itinerary included San Juan, St Thomas, La ... Read More
We traveled on the Costa Magica the week of March 18th as part of a mid size group, there were 7 of us in my immediate family in 2 cabins (2 kids - 1 yr old and 4 yrs old). Our Western Caribbean itinerary included San Juan, St Thomas, La Romana (Dominican Republic) and Grand Turk. Embarkation - it took us about 1 ½ hrs to board the ship. Overall, it went as smoothly as boarding 3,000 passengers could be. We went directly to our cabin and found our room keys and the tickets for the excursion we had purchased a few days prior online on Costa's website. The muster drill occurred around 4 and with a 1 yr old is not easy. Holding a 1 yr old while wearing the both of you are wearing life vests is not easy. The staff did offer me a pass to go back to my room if my child became too much to handle. I just took off both our vests and was able to get thru the entire drill. Ship - The ship was beautiful, this is an Italian Cruise line and you can get a sense of their culture from the dEcor. There ship is covered with artwork, statues and A LOT of gold. Most of the documents and menus were in English and Italian, and some in 2-3 additional languages. Announcements were also made in several languages. Entertainment - some of the shows are kind of hokey, if you are looking for Vegas or Broadway like shows - this is not the cruise for you. If you are looking for something to pass the time during your cruise, then the shows will entertain you. The last night was "Roman Night" and the passengers talent show - this was fun. You have to give credit to the people who have the gusto to get up there are show their stuff. The last night every puts on their togas to dinner and for the show - again kind of hokey but it is fun. Everyone has their own interpretation of how to tie a toga, some better than others. Kids Club - the Squok club was excellent. The club is broken into 2 groups - Mini Club (3 - 6yrs) and Maxi Club (7-12 yrs old). Every day there was 3 sessions, roughly 9am-12, 3PM-6PM, 9PM-11PM. Kids need to be diaper free. My 4 yrs old thoroughly enjoyed her time spent in the club. The activities were interesting to her and the counselors were enthusiastic. There was more than one night were she cried because she did not want to leave. Part of the group were traveled, also had a 5 and 7 yr old boys that also stated they liked the club. Every night had a different theme - jungle animals, spooky Halloween, pirates, etc. They had 2 dinners during the cruise specifically for the kids and served pasta, chicken fingers, fries, etc, on these nights the session ran from 5:30-11:30. The counselors even went around cutting up all the food for the younger kids. There were two group photos taken, one with all the kids in the created Halloween costumes and the other with the Captain of the ship. During the time in the club - the counselors give our "Squokkers", play money used as positive reinforcement. My child couldn't wait to show me at the end of each session, how much she earned for being good. The last session of the cruise, the squokkers can be turned in to the Squok market to get free stuff. Every kid walked out of the club with a bunch of stuff, my child received a backpack, wallet, bubbles and yoyo with the Squok logo. I wasn't too keen on traveling with my children, let alone leaving her in a club for any length of time. However, I was pleasantly surprised at the organization and execution of activities by the "Children Animators"/ Counselors. I think my child had the best time of anyone in the group. Ports - Our captain hauled the ship to San Juan so we actually arrived an hour early at 4PM. I still wish we were able to arrive during the morning since many of the sites are closed around 4-5. This port primarily caters to the late night club but you can still use the daylight to shop and see the narrow streets of old San Juan. The 2nd port was St Thomas, we took an excursion to Mountaintop/Coral World. MountainTop is the highest point in St Thomas, basically it's a brief tourist stop to take some photos of the island and buy some souvenirs. Coral World, an Ocean Park was a good choice since we were traveling with younger children. Overall, it did not meet my expectation that I had after reviewing the website (http://www.coralworldvi.com), it was smaller than I thought it would be, but my kids did enjoy it. The entire excursion was only 4 hours so we still had another 4 hrs to go shopping around Havendale Mall which was right beside the ship. So overall, it was worth the time and money spent on the excursion. La Romana, this is a fairly undeveloped port that was created (in my opinion) as a way to push people over to the Casa De Campo Resort. There is NOTHING, in the vicinity of the ship, many people without formal plans got off the ship to turn around and get right back on. We stayed on the boat at this port but heard good things about Altos de Chavon, a village that was created which is a few minutes from the port. You can take a bus or cab over there so I am told. Several other people did go to Casa De Campo which I heard was beautiful. There is a swimming pool and beach that is inside this complex than can be used as well as restaurants and other amenities. Grand Turk, this is a beautiful, still undeveloped island, not yet fully raped into a commercialism tourist trap like ports in Cozumel and Jamaica. Carnival built a facility right off the pier than includes a beautiful beach with fake looking aqua blue water, a handful of stores/vendors and a huge Margaritaville with a huge swimming pool, restaurant and bar that you can hang out in. We stayed within this complex and didn't venture out. I read a few bad reviews of the hop on, hop off trolley and didn't want to get stuck with my 2 kids and have to wait to get back. Food - I must admit, my expectation was high for an "Italian" cruise ship. The food overall was decent, not spectacular. We had a early sitting for dinner so we stuck with that most of the trip. The dinner buffet does not open up till 7:30 and we did not want to wait for food. They did prove a high chair for my 1 yr old and it was set up every night by the time we arrived. The head waiter was very helpful and even though I brought my baby food for the entire week, they did offer to bring him additional baby food. The did have a large selection as well as the always available - chicken, spaghetti, cheesecake, Caesar salad. I did not have any dish that I would consider awful, just not a excellent and I expected. We same held true for the buffet, as on any cruise, you can eat to your hearts/stomach's content. Other Services - Pharmacy - My 1 yrs old did get sick and had a fever few days on the boat and I had to use the pharmacy to get more Tylenol. All the medications are in Italian so I was a bit concerned since I do not read Italian and was afraid I would overdose my child. The nurse was very helpful with the medication and it did break my son's fever and make him comfortable. The medication was reasonable about $5.50 for an average size bottle of Acetaminophen. Laundry - we did bring clothes for the formal night with the intention of using the laundry service since the rooms do not have irons. On average, it would cost almost $10 to press a simple dress or suite. Luckily, I packed well, every stayed decent because I couldn't' see paying almost $40 for the 4 people in my cabin. I might bring a steam iron next time I cruise. Electric Outlets - I read a review that suggested bring a power strip, which I did pack. Thank god I did, I brought a portable DVD players for my kids, plus curling iron and had cameras to recharge. I couldn't do it all with only the one outlet that was there. TV - people with kids - if you have it, bring a portable DVD with a selection of movies. There is nothing on the few English channels that would keep them entertained if you need to stay in your room any length of time. As I said, my 1 yr old was sick and we took turns staying with him in the cabin - the DVD was a life saver and broke up his already cranking sick mood. Cribs - I was provided a crib during the trip however, I would recommend that if you need to use their "crib" that you bring your own bedding. I do not think the bedding was ever washed and my child who has sensitive skin was breaking out from the dirty fabric. Luckily I did bring both crib and "Pack and Play" sheets, neither fit their crib perfectly. The ship provides essentially a Chicco play pen which is longer than a traditional Graco/Evenflo playpen yet smaller than a traditional crib. Staff - Overall the staff was good, the waiters were had were patient and very helpful with the menus. By the last night, some of the staff was starting to get a little cranking. The room steward was good and kept our room tidy At the disembarkation, one of the guys from the social staff snapped at one of the guests because he claimed to have only had 2 hours sleep. The attitude seemed to be "you had a good time, but we are tired of you and its time for you to go". We were slightly annoyed the morning we left because we were told we had to leave the room by 8am. We left our stuff in the rooms to run to breakfast, and when we came back at 7:40, our steward were already in our cabin prepping it for the next set of guests.. Disembarkation - now this was a mess. They had us all meet in different areas according to the color tag we were provided the day before. My color was to meet in the theater at 8:45. They then proceeded to call out colors to get each group to disembark the ship. When our color was called, we had to go from the theater (deck 3 front of the ship) to the middle of the ship, deck 2. We traveled like a herd down the stairs to one of the little hallways lined with cabins to get to the middle exit. Hundreds of people trying to converge into 1-2 lines in the narrow hallway WHILE stewards where in this same hallway cleaning rooms with carts in the middle of this hallway. There was no consideration we were traveling with small children, and they were both almost trampled and cut off from us by tired cranky people trying to get off. The staff was not very helpful directing traffic to help with this mess. Overall, did I get what I paid for - Absolutely. Did we enjoy ourselves - Absolutely, we made the best time of it. Did my young kids enjoy it - Absolutely, I did not regret bringing them even though I had initial concerns. Would I travel Costa again? Probably not - it was a beautiful ship and we enjoyed our time, however, I think you can get a bigger bang for your buck with Carnival or Royal Caribbean (this is a sentiment that I heard many times during the trip.) Read Less
Sail Date March 2007
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