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36 Costa Magica Cruise Reviews

We chose this cruise because it seemed like good value for money and was visiting some ports not previously visited. We boarded Costa Majestica in Genoa and from then their organisational skills or non organisational skills became evident. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it seemed like good value for money and was visiting some ports not previously visited. We boarded Costa Majestica in Genoa and from then their organisational skills or non organisational skills became evident. It took at least 4 hours to get on the ship with no regard for the elderly or disabled. The cruise was 28 days from Genoa to Stockholm. Most of the crew were not very friendly, the food was ok but always cold in the Buffet. Getting on and off the ship at most ports was a nightmare long ques along the ships passage ways or when coming back to the ship stretching hundreds of yards with people trying to push to the front which nearly caused some serious fights because of no crew supervision. Again with no regard for the elderly or disabled. Most of the shows and entertainment were in Italian ( which I suppose we should have known, an Italian ship leaving from Genoa). A lot of pre good excursions were cancelled because of the lack of English guides with some people having trouble getting their money back on some tours. We were also told by Costa that when filling in their feed back form only 9 or 10 score will be accepted for questions on the form or it will be discarded, Never agin will I sail. Costa. If anyone from Costa would like to contact me I would welcome it because no Costa represventive on the ship cared very much Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We selected a long cruise taking us through the Mediterranean, around the English Channel and through the Baltic sea to St Petersburg. The itinerary was good and because we selected an outside balcony cabin, we were quite comfortable ... Read More
We selected a long cruise taking us through the Mediterranean, around the English Channel and through the Baltic sea to St Petersburg. The itinerary was good and because we selected an outside balcony cabin, we were quite comfortable throughout the journey. The ship itself is a large liner and pretty much to the standard you'd expect. Entertainment is, well, entertaining and our cabin staff were friendly and helpful as you'd expect. However it kind of goes down hill from there! From day 1 the embarkation, on-board organisation and meal experience was disastrous. (1) Embarkation was 3 hours standing in queues despite some elderly people we noticed having a lot of difficulty. There were no crew members checking on the health and happiness of guests and a bit of care and HR in this regard (maybe some water thrown in) would have done heaps toward the initial experience. Perhaps Costa should realise that the first experience is critical. (2) Many waiters, bar staff and service centre staff are rude and should be made to walk the plank. We understand that working 11 hrs per day for 6 months on end, whilst (apparently) on minimal wages will toll heavily on most people. However, they're pretty much a surly unhelpful lot. It's hard to put this into words as no particular incidents stand out from the rest. Basically it's an attitude problem. With the exception of some, you get the feeling they just don't like you. Maybe they should go somewhere else? Maybe management should take a good look at this problem? (3) Tours and Cost-a-lot. The magic show isn't restricted to the theatre. In-fact, there's lots of "slight of hand" when it comes to this part of the cruise. Cost-a-lot arranged shuttle buses in every port to take people to and from town centres for about Euros 15 each person. In most cases town was quite close and could be walked or public transport was available for 1/10th of that price. When querying this prior to docking, Cost-a-lot excursions desk referred you to the help desk and vice versa with no-one apparently knowledgeable of where they were heading or willing to give advice. The on-board shops were a rip off to which we fell victim. We purchased 2 Invicta watches, which were said to be discounted by 75%. During the purchase i asked if the discount was genuine or not. We were assured it was. It wasn't at all! When researched we found that we could have purchased these same watches from various retailers cheaper than what we did and without any discount. We also noticed that the alleged 75% off was offered to guests coming on board throughout different parts of the trip as a "once day flash sale". This is a good trick Cost-a-lot! In Australia, we call it lying. (4) Food and Restaurants. OMG! The Bellagio Buffet (the zoo) is something to write about. The food from cruise start to finish is lacklustre and cold. Don't be late, though! If you don't covet a table and defend it with your life a good 45 minutes before it opens, you'll wait 20 minutes in line before you get something to eat. Pushing and queue jumping is normal. Piling food on plates is normal - then because it's too much to eat, discarded. One tip i have for "the zoo" is to have the salads in a different place to that of being before the hot food containers. This will alleviate people standing at the front of the line picking and choosing a bit of this and that cheese and lettuce whilst there's 200 people behind them waiting to get some hot food. The Bellagio needs a total revamp. Sit down restaurants were more civilised and the food was okay for the most part. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We chose this 23 day cruise from Genoa to Stockholm only to find out 2 weeks before we left that it was in fact 3 separate cruises. This meant we had to change cabins 3 times ! Food was always cold no matter what time you ate. Even if ... Read More
We chose this 23 day cruise from Genoa to Stockholm only to find out 2 weeks before we left that it was in fact 3 separate cruises. This meant we had to change cabins 3 times ! Food was always cold no matter what time you ate. Even if you were there at opening time. Nearly all announcements were in Italian or Spanish. Also entertainment. No such thing as queuing for anything, it is just push and shove wherever you go, especially when going ashore. Several Shore Excursions cancelled because they don't have English speaking guides. Very quick to take your money though. Fight to get it back. Not enough drink waiters at busy times. Cabin crew do the best they can in the time given them but don't expect clean glasses every day because you only get them on the first day, after that you wash them yourselves. Never again!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Went on a two week (back to back) cruise with my sister and my adult daughter. Girls cruise! SO excited. First time with Costa. We all enjoyed the cultural experience. Very few English speaking guests on board. We don't speak ... Read More
Went on a two week (back to back) cruise with my sister and my adult daughter. Girls cruise! SO excited. First time with Costa. We all enjoyed the cultural experience. Very few English speaking guests on board. We don't speak Italian or French but they had specific English embarkation and de-embarkation talks and any relevant announcements were given in 4 or 5 languages. The ship was beautiful! Most of the staff were great. However - a few complaints. I've been on many cruises and this is the first time where sanitation was not a priority. You can enter the ship and any dining area without hand sanitizer. There is a container of it - but you have to look for it. It's usually off to the side or tucked away in a corner. I got horribly sick with tonsilitis. Our waiter told us that tonsilitis was going around the ship like crazy the month before we boarded. My daughter got sick with a gastrointestinal issue. Both of us spent some time in the ship's hospital. The med staff were great! But we all wondered if the lack of hand sanitizing caused this. The second complaint was that the "Do Not Disturb" sign on the door was completely ignored. One time I was sleeping and an employee knocked and I had to get up to answer. The worst though - was when my daughter was sick - in the bathroom - nude - on the toilet - and an employee walked into the room (despite the Do Not Disturb sign) and OPENED THE BATHROOM DOOR!!! He didn't even knock first - just opened the door. My daughter screamed at him to get away. He left immediately. I don't think the guy was a pervert - just made a very stupid mistake. But seriously - who does that???? I was enraged when I heard what happened and went to the front desk to complain. They said the guy was new and just messed up. I do think they handled it well. An English rep called the room and talked with me - and later met up with us in person to make sure everything was ok. We were warned not to expect great food. We were pleasantly surprised with the dining room and enjoyed many meals there. I was expecting some wonderful Italian food and was disappointed with what I had in that regard. Plus the eggs for breakfast were either disgusting (powdered) scrambled eggs or undercooked (sunny side up) ones. We did find plenty to eat though so it was ok. Entertainment was not good. There WAS one comedian that was hilarious! He performed twice and we all loved him. The rest was so bad it was funny. The cabin was great - the room steward did an excellent job. The itinerary was great. Lots of interesting ports. Some I've never been to before. Most of the staff spoke English - so no problem there. Getting on and off the ship wasn't as efficient as some cruises I've been on - but it wasn't bad. Bottom line - I will not sail with Costa again. Don't like the lack of hand sanitizing and prefer the food I've had on other lines. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We have chosen the itinerary not the ship but as the agency recommended this ship as a 5 stars from Costa fleet I expected the best of it. Well unfortunately expectations were far too high compared to reality. First of all is not a 5 ... Read More
We have chosen the itinerary not the ship but as the agency recommended this ship as a 5 stars from Costa fleet I expected the best of it. Well unfortunately expectations were far too high compared to reality. First of all is not a 5 stars and if I take the quality of the cabin and restaurant grounds is not even 4, I would give it a maximum of 3. The whole ship looks like it would have been furnished in the 80`s with a lot of kitsch elements. Golden metal, dull colors, and a wallpaper that can be unappropriated for certain ages. The cabin was ok in size but far too little place to put your stuff in especially if you are a family of 4. Best you have the least of luggage pieces as there is no place but under 1 bed to store it. The bed was pretty comfortable but had a dirty head far too small for practical use but we avoided touching it anyway as was stained. Bathroom was the classical small one and except soap there was no other toiletry provided and I mean just soap not shampoo. You could call for some cream or shower cap if you wanted. The shower curtain was matter of few cms too short to make sure you inundate the whole space when showering - couldn`t they afford to buy few cm more to save the stress of leaking water... Once we got paper napkins which I think was a mistake as the box disappeared after without being replaced. The towels and bed sheets always had some spots even if being newly replaced - I have never seen in a ship or high end hotel so many spots on "freshly changed" stuff. Not sure they came this way from cleaning or just the cleaning lady somehow poorly handled them - I called several times to be changed till gave up. It was also clear that the cleaning lady is overloaded - in the days they embark there was no way she manages all the cabins. Restaurants were a bigger issue. The buffet restaurants upstairs were always very dirty and disorganized. Imagine you come first thing in the morning and your marmor imitation table is dirty which I believe was left dirty from dinner as typically you`ll find ketchup and bread crumbs. Worse is that the servers didn`t cared too much even when they were told. Once the lady I asked to clean it just cleaned half of table ... anyway the way they cleaned was passing an already cluttered cloth which would leave a disgusting watery surface I used to anyway dry again myself with paper towels. Actually by the end of the cruise my morning routing was to pick up directly paper towels and clean my table... Food was plenty but nothing you would really say wow - there was an Italian theme indeed not all the dishes were tasting as expected. Prosciutto was something I enjoyed but the mozzarella they said is done on ship was not really good. Buffet was fine even if twice I had to get out a piece of hair from my grilled meat. Worse was the dinner as there was no single time when I could say wow - in other cruises we took we really had dinners where you could feel the difference to buffet in high end food here I think better stick with buffet. Twice we returned the main dish without touching it. Once we got at extra cost lobster - that came just grilled ok we asked grilled but expected some fancy tasty sauce as a completion - was not bad but that was just grilled lobster they want 25 euro for. Desserts were a huge disappointment - whatever had white color was just wiped cream that they call it one day mousse the other panna cota and so on. I remember one time when they had a chocolate cake in the buffet that was really good, tasty not something you would just take in as need of sugar.We ended up buying gelato for kids and that was extra cost but good. Standard coffee from machines was poor in taste, I used the decaf one that was not so bad on the other side. The button on their coffee machine was broken and fell down every time you pushed it so you had to pick it up stick it back and hold it so it doesn't fall again - in the 2 weeks we were there nobody bothered to repair it so you would just feel the need to tell to the newcomers the secret how to keep it in place. For drinks you need to pay extra - we just took a lunch and dinner package to have drinks during this time and we wanted to upgrade for cocktails but failed to do this on line and on the ship we were surprised to find out that it costs more then double in price so we said we buy by piece whenever we want and frankly we were happy we didn't wasted money on it. The wine they get you at lunch and dinner is really low quality and the cocktails especially at the pool bar didn't look at all appealing neither is size, care in preparation or content. The restaurant allocated for dinner was not fancy in any way and worse was that it had some separation for waiters with sinks and cupboards and if you were unlucky enough to be on the lower side facing these places it was extremely noisy as they were throwing in cutlery and plates. It was like eating in a kids canteen. Service at the first table we were in was too relaxed, we had to serve ourselves for refills with wine for example. We wanted to ask a change just because of the noise and surprisingly one day we get a paper that we were allocated to another table by our request - good news but actually we didn't made that request so suppose was their way to force us to move. We were happy with the new siting both table and service but one day after another paper, another move. This time we were so upset with our 3-rd waiter attitude that we went and asked the change ourselves and gave negative feed back - we believe that the reception lady gave this negative feed back to another waiter. Anyway at least last 3 days we had a normal service in a place where we should not feel like in a canteen. One huge negative point the dress code. For evening I expect on a cruise that people dress up a bit if not they can go in the buffet. Here in the formal restaurant at dinner I have seen people in flip flops and plastic slippers, a lot of loose sport wear and plenty of sporty shorts. I expect the personnel is keeping and reinforcing the dress code. Also no welcome to the dinner restaurant if there was more then 1 waiter there they would chat between them. Public toilets close to restaurant were at noon still missing towels, I didn't had the courage to visit the ones near pool preferring to return if needed in the cabin. Service overall was exactly that: no interest - I have read the reviews of other passengers and looks like many agree the personnel is completely not motivated, no smile, no interest I`am not even saying about any extra mile to make your stay magic. Seemed from outside there is little connection between their various levels of personnel. This is the only ship or resort where people simply don`t smile, not even when they were paid to welcome you. Photographs were having a too imposing attitude. Dinners were worse as you chew your food and the guy pops up and almost commands you to take a posing position. I looked by curiosity on the photos they print and was not impressed with quality either. Reception was another negative. If you come with a complain their attitude becomes not pleasant and if you come for another reason mostly they would redirect you to someplace else. I`m not sure why they call hospitality desk as it`s anything but not hospitality. They would not solve a problem for you but have enough time to chase you for feed back. We had to ask 4 times or even more we get the daily bulletin. On the other side they were more than happy to fill our postal box with tons of wasted paper on what they sell in the shop. The daily journal was just ship`s activities, could be nice they include something on the port of calls like we had on other ships. The upper deck was pretty busy so if you want a chair in the shadow around the pools you must literally be first thing in the morning ready to grab your chaise long if not up in the sun. For the size of the ship I expected bigger facilities in entertainment. They have 3 pools but their were smaller then on a small ship with one. f you had few kids in it was already full - felt you were in a larger bath tab. The big water slide was a catch definitely for kids - in sea days expect big lines, also is opened only few hours morning and resp after noon. In terms of activities and entertainment for us the huge positive point was their kids club - limited a bit by the languages they spoke but still you could practically have the kids there almost full day and they cover even lunch and dinner time. Other wise you have the standard by the pool games, some dance classes, aerobic etc as in any resort or ship. The theater had some attractive shows but we were never able to catch them in full given the dinner settings - not able to catch first and too late for the second. In terms of embarkation and exit from ship we can heavily complain about the start of our trip as we were canceled a flight and had to join the ship only second day while we were still paying the full cruise. We have called both agency and Costa help desk and they told us as we already paid the cruise in full we can embark second day when ever we want - so even calling once more just before leaving our hotel and getting insurance from Costa we can embark we come on place and surprise we need to wait till standard embarkation time> we were neither returned our money for the first day we were not on the ship. We took only one single trip from them directly - as practically is almost double in price compared with local agencies which is not fair if you take the fact that mostly on cruise bought trips there will be large groups and less flexibility. Worse was with kids price as if local agencies give you 50% or more discount Costa discounts were minimal for kids. Here once again no proper communication as we bought this trip in advance on line on Costa site but nobody told us we need to actually get the tickets personally on the ship - we never experienced this before as on other cruises they will put the tickets or waist bands in your post from own initiative or at least give you the info what to do. Good we asked a day in advance and they said they are out of free places and it`s not their fault - after further discussions proving there was zero communication on procedure we finally got our tickets and we were surprised to see the second day the tour was not even full. There were also several changes in the second week in terms of timing of port stay so get a margin when you plan for shore excursions on your own. This of course is not always at cruise decision and depends a lot on weather. Language on board counting that most serving of personnel is Asian will inevitable turn to English. I have several times called the room service for change of dirty towels or lack of soap and even if they answered in Italian I had to reconfirm in English or they brought the wrong item. What was pretty good on the other side is that we never waited in long queues to get back on ship and probably that was because most of stops were full day and people had more flexibility on return time so would not head all in one at the entry. All in one we were not satisfied with our ship experience from the quality of service overall but the 14 days mixture of islands they offer is really interesting. For those interested in the itinerary suggest o check other similar offers with different companies or pay a special attention to price if they decide for Costa. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
My wife and I booked this and it's following cruise through a travel agents promotion in Australia. It looked like a good deal at the time. I have been on cruises with several other companies which have all been good. After ... Read More
My wife and I booked this and it's following cruise through a travel agents promotion in Australia. It looked like a good deal at the time. I have been on cruises with several other companies which have all been good. After booking this cruise we looked at cruise critic and were a bit shocked at some of the reviews which led us to be apprehensive about the trip. The embarkation was ok as it can be a bit chaotic on any cruise. On checking out the ship on arrival we were impressed overall especially the cabin which looked like it had just had a refit. After that it was all down hill. You cannot get an ice cream on board unless you pay for it not even in the main dinning room with dinner. You basically have to pay for everything extra. I always have a sauna when on the ship. When I couldn't access the sauna I enquired and was informed that it was 25Euro a day to use it which is a ridiculous amount to use a sauna for half an hour. No wonder the sauna looked unused. I have never paid for the use of the sauna before. Now for the real bad. The bistro was the most unbelievable place you could ever imagine. There is no hygiene control. No one uses the chemical supplied to sterilise their hands when entering the bistro. People touch food, cutlery and plates with their hands without using same. There are signs to show entry and exit but no one uses this. It is a free for all, pushing in to the middle of the que and going up the wrong way is just normal. It is normal to get pushed aside by people who think they have right of way. There are no staff as in other cruise lines controlling this. On other cruise a gloved staff member hands out the plate and cutlery after you have sterilised your hands. I don't know if this is normal on Italian cruse lines but the amount of food taken off the ship by people going on day trips staggered me. It looked like they were feeding a hoard. It was normal to see cruisers off the ship sitting eating the food from the breakfast session in the middle of cities we visited. Gratuities on this cruise line are compulsory and enforced and as such should be included in the fare not added on. In this case I would not have paid any gratuities as I found the food average, entertainment average and the service in most cases average. Mostly Italian is spoken during shows and entertainment which is a real problem for english speaking cruisers. Shore excursions were expensive. This is a cruise line built for Italians and only Italians. In my opinion if you are not Italian don't use this company. If Costa wants to improve it's image it needs to change its business format becoming an International cruise company catering for all nationalities. In its present format I cannot see Costa prospering as a major cruise line. The only area of the ship I liked and enjoyed was the Piano Bar. The staff in this bar were the most efficient and personable on the whole ship making it a pleasure to go there each night before and after dinner. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I choose costa magica 7 day of Baltic because sdate match for my daughter and wife holiday. I hope this ship is her first cruise made them happy. Last year I and my mother cruise with costa fortuna .We appreciated that ship but nor for ... Read More
I choose costa magica 7 day of Baltic because sdate match for my daughter and wife holiday. I hope this ship is her first cruise made them happy. Last year I and my mother cruise with costa fortuna .We appreciated that ship but nor for costa magica. First at embarkation the officer forgot to stamp complete in boarding ticket and I have to return after X ray. Lunch buffet are hot dog and hamberger but tomato ketchup and mayonaise are inadequate. Dinner no ice cream tea or coffee. Supper has only pizza veg/ham cheese. After midnight has only milk /tea. Entertainment nearly half are non english song but no asian. Gym has some malfunction equipment. inside cabin is small but clean.Port @ stockholm helsinki st peterberg tallin are good. I travel by myself I take uber is good. in St peterberg I takeTaxo vichof for service in hour based have a big problem because call center hot good in english. The last and the most not appreciated is before i disembarkation I check money credit on board gratitude and internet price. It is correct. But 3 day after the credit card officer phone me in midnight because someone try to use my credit card . Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We have been on 10 cruises and Costa Magica does not rate very well compared to the others. We booked this just to see what other cruise lines had to offer and were pleased with the price but overall disappointed. Embarkations was the ... Read More
We have been on 10 cruises and Costa Magica does not rate very well compared to the others. We booked this just to see what other cruise lines had to offer and were pleased with the price but overall disappointed. Embarkations was the easiest so far....flawless and no lines. The ships overall appearance seems to be nice and updated. The rooms are roomy for a cruise ship and we were pleased. We were assigned seating for dining and loved the family that we were paired with but we do not like the assigned seating and prefer the "Freestyle Dining". This allows much more flexibility and not such a rigid schedule while on vacation, The food was edible but not good. Several times we tried what they brought out but chose not to eat it or ate it because we were starving.. We were also disappointed that they do not serve coffee with dessert. Coffee is only served during breakfast and at the bar. Breakfast is good and we chose to go to our assigned dining room for breakfast because it was not as hectic as Deck 9 (which is a free for all). They do offer a menu and serve you coffee as well as a continental breakfast. We were usually off the ship during lunch so we do not know how that went. The service during the Dinner was below average. We constantly had to ask for water and very seldom would pour it for you. The server would just set it on the table. Entertainment was average. We never book shore excursions with the cruise lines because they are too expensive and the groups are too large. We did hear that the ship offered a really good program for the kids which is a plus for families. One of the big things we noticed was they were not require you to clean your hands prior to meals and did not offer warm wash cloths/sanitizer to clean your hands when you are coming aboard the ship after touring another country. Hand sanitizer was unavailable when boarding the ship in some ports and the one going into the dining area did not work properly. Also, we never saw them sanitizing the handrails, etc on the ship. The workers told us they work 8 months a year, 11 hour days, 7 days a week which I am sure this contributed to the poor service. Hopefully, they were given the gratuity that is automatically added to your bill. Our cabin as mid ship on Deck 2 and we could hear the crew working throughout the night most every night. Between the food/service/sanitizing I would not recommend this cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I've taken Costa 6 times the last 4 years. This was the least pleasant experience I've had with them. The spa was terrible - they should just close it. We did the "book a service, get spa access every day deal." It was ... Read More
I've taken Costa 6 times the last 4 years. This was the least pleasant experience I've had with them. The spa was terrible - they should just close it. We did the "book a service, get spa access every day deal." It was always empty (not complaining about that), but here's why: *Wet robes - wouldn’t exchange *Wouldn’t let us cancel facials 48 hrs before appt - had to get manager *Kids' play area right above rooms; rooms small, so aestheticians bumping into you on table *Hard sell on more massages/appts and products got really annoying *No water in relaxation room *Stopping people in hallways to try to sell them products *Hot tub design terrible - 4 bucket seats, jets burn *Desk attendants were genuinely unpleasant. Bonus Round: Indian bartender looks at my card, says “Heather. Sounds like Hitler. You know name Hitler? Yeah. Sounds same.” €500 credit a scam - you can only "get" the discounts by taking advantage of “discounted” rates, free pizza, etc. that "add up" to €500 savings per cabin if you purchase every single special. That's misleading advertising that they couldn't get away with elsewhere. Overall, the service staff (except the spa here) are always nice; the food is mediocre. These are great if you want to get to hard to reach coastal cities, but this is not the best company in terms of comfort and friendliness. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We did the Scotland -Iceland cruise from Amsterdam (14 nights) The pro's Beautifull itinerary Beautifull weather in Iceland! Embarkation proces was very quick and well organised Breakfast was very good (the Italian ... Read More
We did the Scotland -Iceland cruise from Amsterdam (14 nights) The pro's Beautifull itinerary Beautifull weather in Iceland! Embarkation proces was very quick and well organised Breakfast was very good (the Italian sweets were delicious) Quality of the food in the buffetrestaurant was good too Con's Very bad service in the restaurant: lots of mistakes, every night we had to wait 45 minutes before the first dish came (our first dish came tat 21:30 PM and the restaurant opened at 20:45 PM No free water or coffee anymore at night in the restaurant. Food came cold in het restaurant!!! Food itself was good but you see that they use cheap ingredients (scaloppina :from porc instead of veal..., ) and some portions were also very small Buffetrestaurant was always very crowded and loud (long lines + difficult to find a table) Ship itself: not clean at all, dated decor, very crowded , not enough space for all the people on board (3400), not enough personel on board. It needs to stay for a long time in the drydock in my opinion before it will shine againl!!! Announcements always made in 7 languages so resting on deck was impossible. Why make announcements for sales in the shops, beginning of animation... You find everything in the daily newspaper! It is so ennoying. The music (outside decks) was very loud too! Very bad communication about important things (you never knew when the ship was cleared and when you could leave the ship while in port...) Personnel not friendly and not interested For Costa only one thing counts: MONEY!!! They do not care about the passengers! It was our 3rd cruise with Costa. The first one was OK but we did not have much expectations because it was cheap, the second one was one of the best cruises we have ever had (Costa Victoria in Asia 2 years ago- the food on this ship was so delicious!) This cruise was a real dissapointment and I do not think we will cruise with Costa again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We choose the Cruise because at the first sight there were some "exotic" destinations (Casablanca, Tanger) but at the end, these cities were extremely disappointed (dirty, no "magic", only the names..). At the first ... Read More
We choose the Cruise because at the first sight there were some "exotic" destinations (Casablanca, Tanger) but at the end, these cities were extremely disappointed (dirty, no "magic", only the names..). At the first day in Marseille, the ship docked at 9 km from the city and Costa took us 11 eur/person for bus transport (which was supposed to be free). When we returned to the ship, there was a huge queue at the buffet, people were hungry and have to stay in line over 30-40 min. to take the food and then wait for 10-15 min to find a free table. There are not enough tables at the buffet (which was open until 15:00), the service lines closed in front of us without any explanation (even there was plenty of food). In Casablanca the ship docked at 3km from the port exit and they provide no bus to take us out of the port which was dangerous enough. In Civitavecchia we were supposed to disembark at 9:00 am but the disembarkation started at 9:25 so we lost the train (had tickets paid 3 weeks before) and wait over one hour for the next one. Overall, we spend more then 4 hours during our vacation on Costa "Magica" complaining about the conditions and the "hospitality service" was extremely poor and totally hostile to us. All the day-time shows were only in italian (without any translation). The food at the breakfast was poor, there were hours during the day (especially when the people returned from the cities) when no food was enabled. Any extra (eg. pizza, ice-cream, pancakes), had to be paid. At the end, as a "final gift" they charged us a "service" fee of 10 eur/person/night even this was not mentioned in our contract and informed them about this. Overall, I think that Costa is trying to maximize their profit charging anything they offer instead of focusing to customer satisfaction. Costa Magica=an experience we will never repeat. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
We are experienced cruisers - this was our 4th or so cruise. We have sailed on MSC through the years. We chose this ship due to the departure date and exotic itinerary. This was the WORST cruise we have ever taken . All services are ... Read More
We are experienced cruisers - this was our 4th or so cruise. We have sailed on MSC through the years. We chose this ship due to the departure date and exotic itinerary. This was the WORST cruise we have ever taken . All services are more expensive but much worse than at MSC. Every day we returned from the town to the ship there was a huge queue at the buffet and there are not enough tables at the buffet. Breakfast was poorly. In Civitavecchia we were supposed to disembark at 9:00 am but the disembarkation started at 9:25 so we lost the train (had tickets paid 3 weeks before) and wait over one hour for the next one. Water from the toilet was broken for 3 times. The balcony door was broken for every 3 days. Air conditioning made a loud noise and we can't rest at night. Overall, we spend more then 4 hours during our vacation on Costa "Magica" complaining about the conditions and the "hospitality service" was extremely poor and totally hostile to us. Crew did not seem very concerned about issues or complaints - they seemed indifferent to our concerns. We will never sail with Costa Cruises again and would not recommend it for any one. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
We are experienced cruisers - this was our 35th or so cruise. We have sailed on RCL, NCL, Princess, Celebrity, Carnival and Costa through the years. We chose this ship due to the departure date and exotic itinerary - figured how bad ... Read More
We are experienced cruisers - this was our 35th or so cruise. We have sailed on RCL, NCL, Princess, Celebrity, Carnival and Costa through the years. We chose this ship due to the departure date and exotic itinerary - figured how bad could an Italian cruise be and it could be fun and lively. Well we were very wrong. This was the WORST cruise we have ever taken and our sentiments were echoed by our Norweigen and British tablemates who had cruised numerous times in the past as well. I will list Pros and Cons. PRO - Embarkation from Rome (Civitavecchia) - Exotic Itinerary (5 of the ports we had never visited including 2 cities in Morocco) - Large ship with attractive public rooms - Cabin - interior on 8th deck (only available at time of booking) was kept clean with a fridge and had enough space for both of us - Entertainment - Flamenco dancers, Cruise ship singers and dancers did a good job; White Night deck party was festive with DJ, dancers, confetti; lounge bands were lively, piano bar was busy nightly; casino was fairly busy; the ship had lots of music in various lounges in the evening and The Voice gameshow with 7 contestants which was entertaining. CONS - Embarkation fiasco - no idea we could not be dropped off w/rental car to embarkation entrance...no info provided...husband left son and I on port access road with big pieces of luggage - no bus or cab would stop to pick us up...port police intervened and forced a shuttle bus to stop and let us load our luggage under the bus (seems we should have loaded our luggage on shuttle bus in town of Civitavecchia - we had no info on this procedure. - Only approx 20 Americans on board ship of approx 2800 passengers - 70% Italian extended families; 25% mostly French & German; 5% Brits, Americans, Spanish & other - Msgs repeated in 5 languages all day long - Food was HORRIBLE!! WORST of any cruise we ever have ever taken! Buffets very limited, no real selections, same cold cuts, cheeses, breads and salads daily, same buffet choices both sides...grill outside on decks was normal fare; eggs at breakfast were only possible at the formal breakfast and were set types of eggs pre-made; formal dinner was barely edible - the menu choices were bizarre fare and not tasty - minute steaks, thinly sliced chicken breasts with no sauce, pastas with odd sauces, appetizers no one enjoyed - night after night we all felt the same....what type of menu is this - this food is unsatisfactory - we complained to guest services - we were told the menu was supposed to have been changed; dining onboard was such a huge disappointment - we dreaded our days at sea! We later found out by a fellow American traveler that all the food onboard was PREVIOUSLY FROZEN!!! She said look at the snowflakes next to every item on the dinner menu - the key says previously frozen. We realized thats why the food was soooo bad!! There was no fresh produce and no dishes being cooked onboard!!! Never heard of this policy on a cruise ship. There were NO speciality restaurants either - I guess not if they are not cooking on board the ship! - No late night buffets or special touches like a chocolate fountain or specialty food events. - Air Conditioning barely worked in our cabin - technician came twice said it was a bad, weak system in this line of cabins and close to pool deck with hot air coming in. - Pool deck extremely crowded - 3 pools and 1 slide; slide was always closed; no adult pools - all pools overrun with kids and teens - one day at sea - two of the 3 pools were closed - they claimed seas were too rough - early morning yes - a bit rough but by noon sea was very calm and pools never re-opened. - Rear deck cabins felt a terrible vibration almost nightly when the ship was traveling at 20 knots - made it hard to sleep. - The ship had a lot of movement daily - you could feel it pitching and rolling onboard - we never noticed this onboard any other ships we took and we cruised from Southhampton, England in a rainstorm in the North Sea. - Disco and late night club could not be used by adults (well, it was open to all) however, the 12-16 year olds used it nightly as a teen club occupying it until 3am - most adults would feel uncomfortable dancing in the club with 12 year olds late at night - seemed odd yet, the bar was serving liquor to whoever ordered it. We brought this to the attention of Guest Services and they said this is normal on Costa. - Crew had a private party directly above our cabin on the pool deck with a DJ - our whole cabin was shaking with the music and dancing - we complained 3 times to no avail and even went up to the party to speak to the officer - nothing was done and we were kept awake until 3 am! Other passengers went up to complain and were told sorry party is authorized. - Crew did not seem very concerned about issues or complaints - they seemed indifferent to our concerns and we were not offered any form of compensation either for a bad Costa tour experience we had with some aggressive passengers towards our daughter or the crew party till 3 am above our cabin and the lack of air conditioning every night in our cabin and our 2nd cabin....we both had barely any A/C. - We found out an American couple had chosen to opt-out of mandatory tipping - which was only possible for Americans who booked through American companies - we opted out also and tipped those deserving of tips. All in all this was a difficult cruise experience for us - my kids were bored - 19 and 24 year olds - they always meet others passengers their age on ships - there was no one in their age range....only families with small children or older couples traveling alone. Our two cabins were extremely hot every single night although turned to lowest temps. This was our 5th or 6th European cruise of over 11 nights and we NEVER experienced these negative issues or ever complained about the food on board. We will never sail with Costa Cruises again and would not recommend it for any Americans familiar with cruising. This was not up to American cruising standards. It seems to be a "no frills" operation, with many cost cutting measures in place. The most disappointing was the food and the fact that the dishes were all previously frozen. I had no idea cruise ships - which are known for their food would do this. Fortunately, some of the ports were very exotic and educational. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
We went on an 11-night cruise in the Western Mediterranean, including Tenerife and Madeira, in June 2016. This was our sixteenth cruise, our first on a Costa ship. We decided to sail with Costa despite the mostly negative reviews on ... Read More
We went on an 11-night cruise in the Western Mediterranean, including Tenerife and Madeira, in June 2016. This was our sixteenth cruise, our first on a Costa ship. We decided to sail with Costa despite the mostly negative reviews on Cruise Critic and elsewhere because of the itinerary and because we previously had defied negative reviews of MSC and had a very positive experience with them. Embarkation was at Savona and was very badly organised. We waited for over an hour sitting around in a building in the port along with a huge crowd of other passengers before being allowed to board. Far less efficient than our experiences with Princess, Norwegian, MSC and Royal Caribbean. We had booked a suite and this gave us priority in boarding and when we were taken to our cabin we were very pleased with the accommodation. The quality of the accommodation was the most positive aspect of the cruise. However, when we looked around for the coffee machine which had been promised in the brochure and asked where it was we were told that the coffee machines had not been delivered and would not be available. Another disappointment was that our “private butler” turned out to be just another cabin steward serving a whole number of suites. Also, our daily bowl of fresh fruit was seldom really fresh with wrinkled peaches and plums and apples with rotten brown blemishes on them. The food in our private dining area was the biggest single disappointment. The dishes were poorly executed and over-elaborate Italian cuisine which were mostly tasteless and bland. Worst of all was that almost everything arrived at our table lukewarm or cold. One day we had fish with steakhouse fries which were actually cold ! Uneatable. Nothing tasted freshly made by the time it hit our table. This is the first cruise where we actually sent dishes back because they were so bad. Compounding this was the slow and disorganised service in the dining area. The waiters seemed to be badly trained and worked with no sense of urgency or commitment. Since one of the things we usually most enjoy on a cruise is the food, we were very disappointed. Also tea or coffee is available at no extra charge in the dining rooms only with breakfast, with lunch and dinner it is charged to your account. Another major disappointment was the lack of a decent day-time entertainment programme. There were no movies in the theatre, few interesting instruction sessions and little worthwhile music. The shows in the evening were OK. The on-board shops are the least interesting of any cruise we have been on – only two shops and none which sold pharmacy items such as asprin, toothpaste, sun tan oil etc. On the third last day of our voyage the toilets on our deck (I don’t know about other decks) would not flush. This was repaired but recurred. You can imagine the smells that permeated the cabins. Now, a warning to English-speaking cruisers. The language on this ship is Italian. We had pre-booked one excursion and planned to book others as we went along. However, the booked excursion with an English commentary was cancelled because, it turned out, we were the only English speakers among the whole of 3,000+ passengers. Rather than miss the excursion (to Avignon) we went along with the Italian language guide but it was painful not understanding the commentary. We did not go on any other excursions because none was available in English. Also, if you hate cigarette smoke as much as I do, find another cruise line. Smoke is everywhere even though smokers are supposed to indulge only in designated areas and on cabin balconies. Our cruise also had a number of families with young babies which cried a lot and on a couple of occasions woke us up at night. Also there were a lot of young children who were allowed to charge around the dining areas, disturbing diners. The only positives on the cruise were the quality of our cabin accommodation and the WiFi which was charged by size of download rather time spent online. Would I cruise with Costa again ? Definitely not. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
Arrived at the port at 1pm to find pushing , shoving and yelling and no signs to help and had to hunt for assistance. Finally on board and we were directed to the buffet as our cabin was not yet ready. More pushing, shoving and yelling ... Read More
Arrived at the port at 1pm to find pushing , shoving and yelling and no signs to help and had to hunt for assistance. Finally on board and we were directed to the buffet as our cabin was not yet ready. More pushing, shoving and yelling with lines to the buffet ,scrambling for a table and the food was not good. 6pm and no suitcases but I found them by the elevators and took them to our cabin. Dinner: we finally found our assigned table but there was no place left for us. More pushing , shoving and yelling as there were about 60 other passengers without tables and only one Maitre D who could reassign tables and only he could take you to the new table so he was running around like a chicken with its head cut off . Our cabin was pleasant with a balcony.Our bathroom was "stocked" with one small piece of ordinary soap and a liquid soap dispenser in the shower.Our balcony neighbour smoked frequently and even the ash came onto us. Coffee and tea were only available at breakfast and afternoon tea.Any other time like lunch or dinner you had to pay for it. The coffee served often tasted stale and reheated. Water was available at the buffet but if you wanted table water in the dining room at lunch or dinner you paid for it At sea the buffet was closed in the evening so if you wanted a snack there was a pizza room with a charge. Food: served almost warm,never hot, and of mediocre quality. The only salad served was sad looking green salad with a few garnishes and commercial tasting dressing Meal service in the dining room at breakfast and lunch was very slow and often the waiters were grumpy. Meals in the buffet had long lines and poor food. It had the atmosphere of a high school cafeteria Library: the books were old paperbacks left by passengers and the Costa label stuck on.They then filled out a triple form to take them out. There were generous areas for smoking but that did not stop some passengers for lighting up wherever they felt like it.Passengers were told in the daily bulletin not to enter the buffet in bathing suits but that did not stop them. They also left their towels on the sun chairs and disappeared the result was that these were in short supply. Breakfast in the cabin.5 euro charge Often the ship was docked far from the entrance a shuttle was provided with a charge for it At each entrance to the dining rooms when about 600 people would charge in at the same time only one hand hygiene gel dispenser was provided and it was often empty. The ports were interesting( which is the main reason we chose this ship) but they did not always stay for a full day. If there was ever a problem the staff would make the excuse that "the ship is full". Surely they would have known this for some time and made adjustments? It seemed to be understaffed which is perhaps the reason some of the staff were grumpy and less helpful than usual. On the positive side the Costa theatre perfomances by their entertainment team were very innovative and professional. Also on the positive side we arrived back healthy and in one piece! The business model seemed to be like Ryan Air i.e. charge for everything and anything they could. However what we paid for the cruise did not reflect this and so we feel we did not get what we paid for. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Embarkation was slow and a little chaotic but bags were waiting at our cabin. Don't stay in 8312, we were disturbed by the constant scraping of chairs in the cafe above. Cabin kept immaculate by our steward, towels changed daily and ... Read More
Embarkation was slow and a little chaotic but bags were waiting at our cabin. Don't stay in 8312, we were disturbed by the constant scraping of chairs in the cafe above. Cabin kept immaculate by our steward, towels changed daily and beach/pool towels on request. Plenty of storage, surprisingly spacious and a large comfortable bed. Very few TV channels. Tatty balcony and scratched windows. Main restaurants were good, waiters fantastic, food just nice not amazing. A couple of fun entertainment nights in the restaurant made the holiday. Most of the staff were pretty helpful but very slow service and not so friendly at the pool bar. Buffet restaurants were noisy and chaotic. Very average food. Holiday camp style entertainment at the pool venue, theatre was a little better but still very amateur. We decided to do one organised trip just to see what it was like. We hung around in a queue for over an hour before disembarking, were not advised that the shops would be closed on a Sunday but were dumped in the town in the Dutch side of StMaarten anyway. The trip was supposed to be English speaking but the Italian tourists on the coach were extremely rude speaking over the tour guide who did not do much to help.Photos/videos of our trip for sale were extortionate. The cruise line is money grabbing to say the least. There were very few English speakers on this cruise so if that bothers you be careful what trip you book. After a few days of being shoved out the way and trying to do the normal Brit queuing thing, we just had to give up and become one of the crowd... Not nice !!! Everywhere was very clean and pretty well organised. Disembarkation at La Romana was shocking, waiting for hours, for immigration, who stamped the paperwork and chucked it on the floor. We will not be cruising with Costa again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
Costa Cruises Brazilian Holiday December 22 to 30 2011 / 8 nights Itinerary Embark in Buenos Aries Day 1: At Sea Day 2: At Sea Day 3: At Sea Day 4: Angra dos Reis (Brazil) Day 5: Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) Day 6: Ilhabela (Brazil) ... Read More
Costa Cruises Brazilian Holiday December 22 to 30 2011 / 8 nights Itinerary Embark in Buenos Aries Day 1: At Sea Day 2: At Sea Day 3: At Sea Day 4: Angra dos Reis (Brazil) Day 5: Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) Day 6: Ilhabela (Brazil) Day 7: At Sea Day 8: Punta del Este (Uruguay) Disembark in Buenos Aires We were in Buenos Aires over the holidays for 19 days. We were looking for options to compliment our stay; either go to Mendoza, Igazu, stopover in Santiago or other. We found this cruise on the Costa web site and found the itinerary very interesting for the week of Christmas. I have cruised with Carnival twice before in the Caribbean. Costa and Carnival are sister companies and Costa is an Italian version of Carnival. Therefore, my expectations were set on what I experienced with Carnival which is basic and not to expect too much. I had cruised on the Carnival Victory twice. For this cruise, we cruised on the Costa Magica, a sister ship of the Carnival Victory so the layout of the ship was familiar. The passengers were mostly Argentinean and Brazilian; they sold this cruise from both ends so the crowd changed somewhat after the stop in Rio. Since this was a holiday cruise, we were expecting many children. What we did not expect were undisciplined children with parents that did not seem to care. Children of all ages over ran the ship. They were everywhere, running in the hallways, getting on and off elevators pressing all the buttons on the way out, in the casino gambling, in the adult pool, in the Disco, roaming around everywhere unsupervised. It was like being in an unsupervised day care. The crew did the most they could but since the parents did not seem to care there was not much they could do short from kicking them off the ship. I must add that some of the adults were just as disrespectful, stealing deck chairs, being loud and obnoxious, cutting in on the buffet line and so on. I have never seen such chaos on a ship or in a resort or hotel in all my travels. The lack of respect for others was unbelievable. The ship's crew was just as shocked since the ship had just crossed the Atlantic a few weeks before, so it was culture shock for them. However, I do hold the crew responsible for not applying the rules out of respect to all their passengers. They seem to have given up. They did remind passengers of the rules in the daily newsletter but the rules were never enforced when situations arose. Many crewmembers informed me that the ship had over 3000 passengers. According to the ships stats the capacity is 2700. If this is true, this may explain the reasons for the subpar service and disorganisation among the crew. Cabin: I always book a cabin with a balcony on a high deck, we were on deck ten and the cabin was identical except for the decor as the Victory cabins with balcony. Ironically, I was on deck 10 on the Carnival both times. The cabin decor surpasses the Victory, it is less tacky. Our cabin steward Caitano was impeccable. Courteous and was very attentively to details, thoughtful and always had a smile. We tipped him very well and he was very appreciative. He deserved it. Food and Beverage: Breakfast at the buffet restaurant was the same everyday and the taste and quality was awful. Fruit was rare and limited to a few choices. Watermelon every day, cantaloupe one day and it was not ripe. Mango on every other day and it was not ripe. No toast, eggs floated in some sort of liquid, potatoes were very oily, bacon was extra salty, and the sausage was more Chorizo style witch I find is not suitable for breakfast. They ran out of yogurt often, no spoons available at the buffet and the coffee is from concentrated liquid, very disgusting. There was an omelette station set up in a corner and the wait time was more than 25 minutes. The la carte breakfast option was available for 90 to 120 minutes each morning starting at 7am. Not very particle hours, we made it to the la carte breakfast on the last day. Nothing better here than what the buffet offered and the service was lousy. Coffee refills were never offered and the staff did not seem to want to be there. Lunch hours for la carte were just as impractical as the breakfast. They seem to have planned these hours so you cannot make it and they do not want you there. We had the lunch buffet twice. Again tasteless food and not very many healthy options. On one day, they had hamburger patties with no buns. I asked and the staff behind the buffet and she said there was none. After lunch on our way out passing, another buffet there was many buns. Staff did not seem to care or want to be there and had no idea what hospitality service is. I witnessed some of the worst hospitality service I ever experienced on this ship The buffet dining area was always disorganised. Dirty tables, tables full of used plates, uneaten food would stay there for long periods. It was difficult to find a table. We usually had to clear the table ourselves and clean it. They definitely did not have enough staff on hand; the staff present seemed disoriented and incompetent. The drink service was slow or nonexistent, most of our meals at the buffet were without beverages due to lack of servers. These situations happened everyday at the buffet restaurant during lunch and breakfast. After a few days, I saw eating on the ship as nourishment or as much as you can get out of the choices they offered. The buffets were not refilled fast enough and often had to wait for a refill. It was very frustrating and unacceptable but had no other choice if you were hungry. I am no fan of fast food but the golden arches would have been a welcome site after two days on the ship. The buffet was opened at night for a few days during the week for 90 minutes. I found this unacceptable when you are dining at the second seating at 22h15. We did not experience the evening buffet due to the limited times it was offered. Waiting until 22h15 at night to eat after a full day at a port of call was not practical. The seated dining at night was just as chaotic and the rest of the services. The dining room never opened on time, always late. Service at the beginning of the week was slow; as the week progressed, it got too fast. The food was mediocre at best. Cheese plates were served with soda crackers or soup crackers. On the Italian theme night, nothing tasted or looked Italian, very disappointing from an Italian cruise line. I know my Italian food since I am a meeting and event organiser for high-end clients and work for Italians. The cannoli served would have insulted any Italian. It was disgusting and an insult to serve such a thing or call it a cannoli. When I mentioned this to our waiter, he told me that they serve the real cannoli when in Europe. Then why not in South America? Tea was served everyday and offered the same options every day. Dry tasteless cakes, pastries, and sandwiches that had a slim piece of cheese or meat in bread 3 inches thick. Tasteless pizza served everyday with plain tomato sauce and hardly and cheese, just enough to make it somewhat white. Would it be that hard or too expensive to add some vegetables or event some pepperoni. I thought I was on an Italian ship, again very disappointing to find the same cardboard with tomato sauce everyday!! Salt and pepper was needed to make it taste like something. What surprised me is that no proteins were in tea or pizza afternoon choices. If you missed lunch and were dining at the second seating at 22h 15, you are out of luck and will be hungry until dinner; no other option for food was available when the pizza service was done at 19h30. When retuning from an excursion at the end of the day, no food or snacks were available. You better have eaten before boarding and get something decent. We ate as many times we could on shore before embarking the ship. We dined at the club restaurant twice during the week. It was excellent and the service was impeccable. The dishes were well presented and were very tasty. The Maitre D Justine was amazing and a very hospitable host. These were the only two times that we had a decent meal on the ship. Bar service at the bar was good, some bartenders were useless, they did not know their drinks or available liquors. We quickly noted these bartenders and avoided them. We purchased an all inclusive drink package that was offered for a few hours the day of arrival. It was an excellent choice and it was profitable for us. The quality of beverages was very good and the cappuccino at the bars was good, this was a relief since the regular coffee offered at the buffet was awful. Entertainment Music from a can is not my opinion of musical entertainment. Signers sit behind a piano or with a guitarist and the rest of the instruments and computer generated. Playlist were repeated every night. I think I heard Por Ti Volare and Quando, Quando Quando more times during the cruise than I did in my entire life, it was unbearable. I avoided the theatre shows after peaking at one. Bad singers, dancers, and animators are a standard on this ship. This was a Christmas cruise so Christmas music played over the ships loudspeakers all day for 8 days, the same songs over and over again. On the 27th I went to customer service and asked why they were still playing Christmas music. There response was that it was a Christmas cruise. However, Christmas has past and it is over move on! Ports of call This is the main reason we booked this cruise and we were not disappointed. Each port was amazing we visited places we would have never visited if it were not for this cruise. We booked excursions on all the stops except for Angra dos Reis. The excursion in Rio de Janeiro was not worth the cost. The English excursion was cancelled due to little demand so we took the Spanish one. The local guide was very kind and took the time to answer all our questions. I am disappointed that the ship did not offer a personal translator as they did for a French couple in Punta del Este. I would have paid the extra costs. Ilhabela is beautiful but we were there for only 5 hours. Way too short of time to appreciate this destination. Same for Punta del Este. All stops were tendered except for Rio. The wait times to board a tender in Ilhabela was 1 hour, an hour wasted waiting in the hot sun. The wait time for a tender was 45 minutes in Punta del Este. Bad planning and timing on part of Costa. At least they rented a tender service in Punta del Este to compliment their own to make the wait shorter by 15 minutes. It was always a relief to get off the ship and have a good meal. That was reward enough and made the wait tolerable. General Internet service was slow and we were charged for time we did not use. We did log off as they requested but our time kept being counted since their server never logged us off. We ended up purchasing 7 hours of internet time. We placed a complaint on day two after purchasing 3 hours and never used more than 1. After the third complaint, they informed us that an email was sent to Italy to see if they can refund some time. I asked that they provide a report of the quantity of KB uploaded or downloaded and at what times when we were connected. I also asked that they do not provide an answer to us the last night onboard, which is exactly what happened. They credited 90 minutes of internet time to our account not a refund. I will be contesting the internet charges with my credit card company. After this experience with customer service, I learned that they are only pencil pushers and cannot help you even if they wanted to. We also had to contest 4 charges on our account that were incorrect; these were credited after 2 days. Brazilian immigration took our passports when we boarded. I questioned many time as to when our passport would be returned. I got many different answers. None proved to be correct, again bad training and people that do not care. We read every piece of information we received since all announcements were in Spanish and Portuguese on board. We were looking for some sort of info as to when we would get our passports back. When we disembarked in Buenos Aires, I was waiting to see a counter where we would receive our passport. There was none. We were near the exit when I asked a Costa crewmember where do we retrieve our passports. She answered that they were given out on board last night. I became very upset and was infuriated. We were never informed that we needed to claim our passports in the theatre the day before or go to customer service to claim it. We had to re-board the ship to get our passports at customer service. They knew immediately who we where and what we wanted. They said they called us on our cell phone but it was busy. That is untrue since my phone was on and I have voice mail. They were calling names all morning for people to go to customer service but they never called us? Again bad planning and they prove again that they customer service cannot deal with any situation. Conclusion After this experience, I will never cruise with Costa again just as I will never cruise with Carnival again. I will also add every other cruise line this company owns. Holland America, Cunard, AIDA, P&O cruises, Seaborn, ibero and Princess. If this is the kind of service they give you on Costa and Carnival I cannot expect much more form the others, even if they are called or are higher categoroes. They do not pay attention to details; do not care about passengers, its all money grab. They give you the cheapest of everything. I do not like Wall Mart and Costa and Carnival are the Wall Marts of cruises. If I am going to spend what I spent on this cruise, I will make sure next time I get something decent for my money. I am a meeting and event executive; I work in the hospitality industry. I work with clients our office has had for over 20 years. Why? Because we treat all our clients with respect and give them the best there is with the budget they have. I can tell you if a hotel if a dump just by walking into the lobby. My expectations were low and they managed to go lower. I loved the ports of call but the rest was a nightmare. A crewmember even confirmed this. I hope this helps anyone planning a cruise. My advice is look elsewhere and spend a little more and get your monies worth. When you spend your hard earned savings on vacation you deserve it. PS: My review was written before the incident with the Costa Concordia in Italy. When I read about what passengers experienced during the evacuation it does not surprise me. Chaos, confusion and bad training were witnessed all week on the Costa Magica. The Captain of the Magica and his officers were in the ship's bars every night consuming alcohol and fraternising the female passengers. Many other crew members were also in the bars. This in my opinion is unprofessional and should not be tolerated. My sympathies to all the Costa Condordia passengers. Read Less
Sail Date December 2011
We traveled for the 11 day cruise boarding at Le Havre, France around the North Sea. Happily, we had fair weather and enjoyed Scotland, an old favorite Amsterdam, and Hamburg in the sun. Crossing from Norway to Scotland was a terrible day ... Read More
We traveled for the 11 day cruise boarding at Le Havre, France around the North Sea. Happily, we had fair weather and enjoyed Scotland, an old favorite Amsterdam, and Hamburg in the sun. Crossing from Norway to Scotland was a terrible day at sea, and half the (full) ship was a bit sea sick. Costa is just a cut above MSC in quality, however, it is a big trench above the other Italian line in price; and frankly, although MSC is the pits, so is Costa. Catering to a majority of Italians, you'll find smokers abound, unattended children in places they shouldn't be - like the casino, and using the corridors as playground space. It's the same old poor quality bar drinks -- MIA TIAs made with 40% lemon juice; coffee from mid-west America, runny eggs and greasy potatoes in the morning buffet, to same old same old lunch, to dinner by candle lite but perhaps only to hide the poor quality cuts of meat, questionable fish, and rot gut wine. However, deserts were acceptable - but not the corny cheese plate with stale walnuts. So why do I say "dishonest". Nowhere, except in the fine print of the final boarding pass, is the 6€ per day per person tip mentioned that it is not negotiable. Perhaps in advertisements it is mentioned, but never that it cannot be argued with in the case you don't agree that the service warrants it- like all other cruise line packages. So there, if you understand a finer point, you see that the tips should be added to the cruise price - making it a less competitively package. Thus, it's false advertising. Perhaps here, I'd like to point out that Vacations To Go lists that the charges are negotiable, perhaps out of ignorance. All that aside, the cruise was pleasant, inside cabin small but well appointed and serviced. Regarding the ship in general, it is decorated to the hilt, however, it has few interesting public spaces, with deck 5 serving as a main public space with a host of lounges of differing venues. But, just as with the food, attitude, excursions, etc. these offer little value as they are overcrowded, or sometimes just dead due to lack of interest or talent. The spectacles in the theater were saved from embarrassment by a quartet of fairly talented Chinese acrobats. Without these, take a star off Costa. Actually - I give it a 2 star rating, and have had better food, entertainment, and service on 3 star ships, like the Louis Magesty. Regarding the casino, just forget it as the pay offs on the slot machines were non-existent; you could easy drop 50€ per 1/2 hour play on almost straight loses. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
We are a Canadian family of four experienced cruisers, who cruised the western Mediterranean with Costa over Christmas 2010. The seven-day cruise is a loop, with guests embarking and departing at every stop. We boarded in Marseilles.The ... Read More
We are a Canadian family of four experienced cruisers, who cruised the western Mediterranean with Costa over Christmas 2010. The seven-day cruise is a loop, with guests embarking and departing at every stop. We boarded in Marseilles.The itinerary is ideal - hitting all the major cities. We disembarked at all stops, and made our way independently into the city. The ship-organized excursions had restrictive itineraries (and were expensive), and we wanted the freedom to explore on our own. While little information is available on the ship, we found it very easy to navigate each city on our own. Onboard, we were not happy with the food, in terms of either quality or quantity. The ship is confusingly laid out (something other cruisers have noted), and it was very hard to orient ourselves. The gym was well-equipped, and we used it every day. Otherwise there were few activities on board - the intent seems to be that the ship is a floating hotel, moving from city to city. Overall, we were very disappointed with our Costa Magica cruise to the western Mediterranean. There were very few activities on board the ship for English-speakers, and literally no programming for children (12 and 14). In light of how bored the children were, I decided to try to download a movie for them to watch. After visiting the front desk and being assured that the very expensive 3 hour internet package (27 euros total) was high-speed, with excellent access throughout the ship, I purchased the package. Within 20 minutes, I had downloaded 0.0001% of our movie - which would have need 400 hours to download! I immediately requested the cancellation of my package, and the return of the fee. Front desk staff told me to come back the next day: this was repeated 4 more times on our 7 day cruise. I wrote to Costa in early January to request the refund - I heard nothing from the company for 7 weeks. After follow-up, today, the office has finally explained that "because I used the service" I cannot be refunded. I would not cruise again on the Magica, and encourage other English-speaking families to think carefully about choosing this ship. Certainly, know that you will need to independently organize all your children's activities, and cannot depend on the cruise to offer options. Read Less
Sail Date December 2010
Let me start off by saying I had expected this to be a totally different experience than any of my previous 13 cruises. However, I never expected it to be the worst cruise I've ever been on. It was my first cruise out of a European ... Read More
Let me start off by saying I had expected this to be a totally different experience than any of my previous 13 cruises. However, I never expected it to be the worst cruise I've ever been on. It was my first cruise out of a European port. I realize it left out of Italy, but I really thought it would be more amenable to the different nationalities on the cruise. They were not! I DO NOT recommend this cruise to Americans unless they are fluent in Italian. The cruise line made very little effort to speak anything but Italian. It was near impossible to participate on any of the on board activities. The entertainment staff did say a lot of things, ie., Bingo and other games, in English but it was so fast and so mixed in with 5 other languages they rattled off, you could not follow at all. All the ship announcements were in Italian. It seemed that there were only a few announcements that they ever said in English. I was truly terrified that if there were an emergency on this ship, I would never have known what to do. This brings me to the Safety Issues. There was no safety drill upon embarkation at Civitavecchia. This cruise is a circle cruise; meaning people are embarking and disembarking at every port. They do consider Savona the first port, which was the last day for us. That is when they did a life boat drill. Guess it was our tough luck if anything happened the 6nights before that. This is an EXTREMELY budget cruise. It is advertised in Italy dirt cheap with kids sailing free. You truly get what you pay for. The Italians on this cruise were extremely rude. They do not believe in lines or waiting their turn. They were pushy and arrogant. The lack of communication was a huge problem. They also smoke like crazy and smoke anywhere they like. This ship has more smoking areas than non smoking areas. If this is a problem for you, be aware! If you are not used to horrible food and and plastic cups, do not take this cruise. You can see Costa has cut back everywhere they possible can. The only thing you could get 24/7 was coffee and water. They shut the ice cream machines all hours except buffet hours. You had to go to dinner every night in the dinning room. There was not a dinner buffet option. For this reason, people were dressed anywhere from formal to grunge in the dinning room. I'm a 100% Italian American. I am used to good Italian food. There was NONE to be found on this cruise. The pasta dishes at dinner were the only thing that was near what I would call authentic Italian food. The buffet food was hardly edible. Dried out pizza, tasteless burgers and fries. How you can ruin french fries is beyond me. The cabins are good size like all Carnival products. The Entertainment on the first night was okay. The second night, okay, after that it was downhill right to the bottom at horrible. There were three nights where the highlight of the show was juggling. Each night they repeatedly dropped what they were juggling....pretty poor performance. You can tell the cruise lines was spending NO money on entertainment. They were also spending NO MONEY on Air Conditioning. It was almost was an unhealthy hot through out the entire ship. The dinning rooms was unbearable. I left every night as quickly as I could because of the heat. The poor staff was always sweating as were many of the guests. I think it was a health hazard, but I'm sure the cruise lines just looks at it as saving money. The cruise lines provided very little direction when trying to find your tour buses and exit the ship. They never announced you were in port and could start disembarking or what deck to disembark from. It was always a guess if it were deck 3 or 0. The only saving grace at all on this cruise were the staff. The dinning room and other working crew all spoke English and were always willing to help you out. The were great. All in All I wish I had not gone on this cruise. I will gladly pay double or triple on my next cruise to get a better experience. Read Less
Sail Date November 2010
This was my first time on a cruise, and I was told by others that other cruise lines are so much better. This is a summary of the good and bad of my trip: - embarking/disembarking: Poor organization is the best way to describe this. The ... Read More
This was my first time on a cruise, and I was told by others that other cruise lines are so much better. This is a summary of the good and bad of my trip: - embarking/disembarking: Poor organization is the best way to describe this. The building to wait in before getting on the boat was over-crowded and loud, and we waited 3 HOURS to board! Finally I got fed up and got in line before our number was called because the boat was supposed to leave in 45 minutes. It was at this time that I noticed that no one cared what boarding number you had, and people were boarding regardless of how high their number was. Getting off the boat was a little better. We found our luggage quickly, but the bus I was supposed to board refused to allow me on due to the luggage holding area being at capacity. After much confusion, Costa staff called a mini-van, saying it would take 20 minutes to arrive (it took 40). - the ship: The ship is nice looking and seemed clean, though the layout could have been better designed. Certain places could only be accessed by a specific stair-well, so it's necessary to become familiar with the boat quickly. Smoking areas are randomly placed where cigarette smoke can, and does, drift into non-smoking areas. Most of the common areas reak of smoke. The exercise room is small, and several of the treadmills were broken throughout the cruise. For some reason, a jacuzzi is in the middle of the exercise room, making the cramped room uncomfortably humid. Our room was an interior room, which was ok, but I heard the rooms with balconies were quite nice. There is a 6 euro service fee per person per day - surprise! There are no public laundry facilities, so either hand wash clothes in the bathroom sink or risk letting housekeeping overcharge you to ruin your clothes. Don't bother to write any washing instructions; they will ignore them. - food: This was the most disappointing part of the cruise. The buffet offered the same cafeteria-like food every single day. Everything was bland or stale, and people on the cruise didn't seem to understand how a line works (people would walk in and out of line, ignoring those who were patiently waiting). The ice dispensers and soft serve machines were frequently broken. The restaurant food wasn't much better. Our waiter would disappear for 30 minutes between courses while we stared at our empty plates. Courses were tasteless and sometimes inedible. Dessert was the only reason to show up. When I booked the cruise, I was told 2nd seating is at 7pm. It's actually at 9:15pm, and luckily we were able to change to 1st seating at 6:45pm. - activities/entertainment: Games and entertainment seemed mostly geared towards the very young or very old. There were no descriptions accompanying the bizarre names given to games, and the one time we went to play a game, no one else showed up. Bingo is 10 euro/card, which seemed overpriced. There were shows in the theater most nights usually featuring singing and dancing. The "magic" show, and I use the word loosely since there were only a few tricks, was mostly Disney songs with occasional scantally clad dancers - what a weird combination. We only attended 2 shows since I couldn't imagine sitting through more without the help of alcohol. There's a casino area with slots and some table games. We only walked through it since we don't gamble and the casino was a smoker's haven. There's also a disco, but young children hang out there in the evening and are replaced with teenagers around 11pm. The adults seem to go in after midnight, though don't be surprised if you see an 8 year-old sitting next to you at the bar at 1am. There are 2 pools, with the covered pool being only for adults. Never did I see an adult in the adult pool, though I saw plenty of children using it. There are lots of chairs on the deck and conveniently located towels and blankets. There's a jogging track, but it's so windy up there that it seems like a runner would be at great risk of being blown off the track. - ports: The stops were the only good part of the cruise. The ports included Civettechia, Alesandria, Limassol, Izmir, a stop in Rhodes, Pireus, and Katakolon. Some excursions were kind of pricey, but I recommend any of the Egyptian excursions. If you don't plan an excursion, it is possible to pick up a taxi or bus close to the port. Some ports are close enough to the city center to walk, as well. Regardless or your choice of transportation, get off the boat; there's nothing to do while it's ported. One thing that is important to note is that we were scheduled to fly home 3 days after a volcano in Iceland spewed ash in North and Western Europe's air space. Planes were grounded and airports were closed for days. Our flight was canceled, so we were stuck in Genoa for 4 extra days. Initially the hotel told us that Costa would pay for the extra nights and some meals at the hotel restaurant. We were also moved to a different (nicer) 4-star hotel with other North Americans. When called, Costa representatives in Florida denied that Costa was paying for anything extra. It took 3 days for a Costa representative to finally speak to us as group. I don't understand why this took so long, since they seem to have a headquarters near to the hotel where we stayed, and there was no announcement that a rep would show up (we happened to be at the hotel when she arrived). The rep said that Costa would pay for our extended stay and try to fly us out as soon as possible. I appreciated Costa absorbing the expense of having us stay at a nice hotel, but the communication was so poor that the extra days in Genoa were not very enjoyable. Needless to say, I will never cruise with Costa again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2010
we recently cruised the costa magica, baltic seas.we have have cruised 5 other times. this was our worst cruise ever. We are American and were warned that it is primarily Italians, let's say 90% Italians. Of 3,000 passengers, perhaps ... Read More
we recently cruised the costa magica, baltic seas.we have have cruised 5 other times. this was our worst cruise ever. We are American and were warned that it is primarily Italians, let's say 90% Italians. Of 3,000 passengers, perhaps 100 spoke English as their primary language. We probably spoke to 6 people our entire cruise. The Italians on board were the focus of the ship, they were always in large groups, so much so that it made it difficult to even get food at times. They were rude, stepped on you, walked in front of you, didn't seem to care about anybody else but themselves. We were shocked the moment the ship left dock, no announcements, no bonvoyage send off, they just left! We went to dinner that night, table for 8, only 2 other people at our table, an older couple from the US. The table was always set for 8 and nobody else ever came to dinner, very strange. The food was TERRIBLE. The entrees were very strange, never tasted good. The rolls were hard as rocks, we ordered fish several times, it was so bad we couldn't even eat it. We NEVER had a good meal. Please don't go for the food if you are American, you will be disappointed. Even the breakfast buffet was bad, lunch was another problem, all they seemed to want to serve was pizza, if you didn't eat in the main dinning room at night your only other option was pizza, once again. Unless you opted to pay more and go to another dinning room, which I'm sure wasn't good. My husband and I both got some type of food poisoning. I was sick for two days then my husband was ill one day. Certainly took a toll on the trip. The shows were poor, lots of foreign language, totally boring. The cruise ship director was basically nonexistent. Other cruises they have been present and directed the activities of the ship. We only saw the man at the evening shows, he wasn't even entertaining then. Dinner was very late, 7:30, that was early sitting, shows were at 10:00. During the whole cruise we were told very little about anything, few announcements, if there were any about half were never made in English, we just guessed as to what was happening. Good part of the cruise: ports were very interesting, we enjoyed all of them, but basically saw them on our own except St. Petersburg. Our Stockholm trip was cancelled because the ship got in too late. Good thing we had Rick Steve Books so we could do it on our own. Our room was an inside room, bottom floor, we loved it. It was very quiet, and very well kept up, one of the better rooms we have had. The ship is very new so things are in good shape. The room service was very good, everything we wanted was supplied. Tip, don't drink the water or use the ice that is brought in every day, we probably got sick from it. Water is very expensive to buy on the ship about $3 a bottle in the room. We went to Helsinki and finally got a gallon for about $1 and used it the rest of the cruise. TV is terrible, only about one station in English and it was boring. Getting off the ship was ridiculous, they made us wait 2 hours and told us we could be taken into Copenhagen. We waited tried to get on the bus and then were told we couldn't take any luggage. What do you think we were going to do with it? We finally took a taxi, went to Copenhagen to the train depot, rented a locker there, stored the luggage, saw Copenhagen, went back, got the luggage and took the train to the airport. Very easy to get to the airport by train. Skip Costa's expensive transport. Bottom line, this cruise is not for first time cruisers, nor for inexperienced travelers. We looked at the cruise as a floating hotel with bad food. We saw what we wanted to see. We will cruise again, but never Costa. Read Less
Sail Date June 2007
This was our 31st cruise and 1st on Costa. We specifically took it because it's the only cruise out of South Florida to Bermuda. Embarkation was fine. Cabin was outside on deck 2 in farthest rear of ship. Cabin spacious but mattresses ... Read More
This was our 31st cruise and 1st on Costa. We specifically took it because it's the only cruise out of South Florida to Bermuda. Embarkation was fine. Cabin was outside on deck 2 in farthest rear of ship. Cabin spacious but mattresses hard - we had to ask for foam topper and got it 1st night. Vibration in that area was also very bad but we got used to it - felt like sleeping in a vibrator bed. Ship was very clean and room steward and waiters very accommodating. Food was mediocre at best. Can honestly say that we did not have one really good meal the entire week. Quality of meats was poor - beef and veal mainly being of very poor quality. Entertainment also very mediocre - mostly review type - no comedians, magicians, jugglers, etc. Most announcements made in Italian, German and English which got annoying after awhile. We did not take any excursions - did our own in both Bermuda and Nassau. Bermuda was beautiful and made the trip worthwhile as was the weather and seas. As for the Magica and other Costa cruises from talking with others on the ship, I would not recommend them. There are too many other good lines to go with at comparable prices. Read Less
Sail Date April 2007
After having traveled with Costa in 2003 (Costa Victoria) my kids (then 13 and 11 years old, wanted Costa again. So we did it again, this time Costa Magica. No magic here. embarkation was very smooth and fast, the keys or embarkation card ... Read More
After having traveled with Costa in 2003 (Costa Victoria) my kids (then 13 and 11 years old, wanted Costa again. So we did it again, this time Costa Magica. No magic here. embarkation was very smooth and fast, the keys or embarkation card is now given at the cabin, no original picture is taken, as is done in other ship, security is quite lacking. Upon entering the ship, the atrium is impressive. The cabins are accommodating, plenty of storage, no major luxury, the beds were hard ( I requested a mattress top which never came) and dust was everywhere. I took a wet rag and cleaned the walls,the small night tables and the dirty (fabric) headboard. The lamp shades were yellow ( discolored) and liquid stains have become part of the only design. The cabin maid was very nice, only that he cleans where people can see, I found a few items that could We had a balcony. The patio furniture wa dirty, worn and the arm rest was broken. Nonetheless it was a balcony. I booked 1 year ahead, in order to get 3 cabins next to each other, we had 3 families, and even so this was not possible, so they said. Two cabins were next to eachother the other same floor other side of ship. The two adjacent cabins were over the night club, the music did no stop until 4 am. It was impossible to sleep. The Food: There are two main restaurant, and a buffet. The food at the restaurant and the buffet is the same. Only difference is that you can pick what you want instantly and discard it if you do not like it. At the restaurant, you had to get dressed ( no shorts / jeans or sandals.) slacks shirt for gents, and dress or dressy slack for women. buffet is very casual. Italian night was a bust. No chicken marsala, or other more traditional dishes that American identify as Italian dishes. The food was mediocre, tasteless and one thing I experienced in this ship that no other had, was an attitude and staff that said it is not on the menu, I had been on many cruises, my husband only eats chocolate icecream for dessert every day, we told that to our server and only had it twice because it was on the menu. Other cruises the waiter would automatically bring the chocolate icecream for dessert and add a personal touch, by bringing a cookie or wafer or even a chocolate truffle. Here if you asked for something because the menu choices were limited you were told flat out no. In all fairness the burgen stand was good, and reliable. ALways the same. The pizza was OK. entertainment: it was dull. One show was good for a ship. that was CineMagica. A potpourri of movies theme songs. Many costume changes and good finale. Other shows were lacking. No comedy or Magic shows, that one expects on a ship. Only singing and singing and singing...Boring. In all fairness there were some activities for the young kids 3-11. They had a good time as long as there is chicken fingers and fries. The ports: first one is San Juan in Puerto Rico. The ship arrives at 5PM,leaving very little to do, other than, buying their excursIons WHICH ARE QUITE EXPENSIVE. I like to go out and meet the locals, and find a driver to take me places. I did find such a drive, he was wonderful, my only concern was again, I did not want to be out and about when night fell. Costa Magica was less than 100 nautical miles from PR, and had to slowed down to 12 nautical miles, in order to make time to get there late. Why, I wondered? We could have arrived at 12pm. St Thomas was OK. Been there 7 times already. Booked a separate tour company, called Chicago or the Real Deal, be careful of this one. We agreed on aprice for a tour, the beach and shopping and return back to boat, I specified Magens Bay, and once there was told there was abetter beach that they were taking us to. So we went and once there demanded more money, and said if I did not agree he would leave. I told this driver that I would suit and file complaint about his license and then he change the tune, any how, never let anyone intimidate you. Hold your ground. La Romana DR. Beautiful place. Friendly people, you must haggle, there are not set prices, only drawback. Beautiful beach Bayahive. Casa De Campo and Los Alto de Chavon, worth seeing. You can get a driver for $125 ( a group) for all day to go to these places. The best is the local bid the ship farewell in style. It was awesome. I felt like a movie star. Grand Turks: No trees, lots of sun, all man made place, with a very expensive duty free shop and a magaritaville. $7+ for 1 beer, and forget the pina coladas. Chicken wings for $13 ridiculous. The only tours available are from Costa, so one feels trapped. Can not get out, and the beach is not much to look at. There was algae everywhere and rocks that cut your feet. There were many lounge chairs, and some cabanas, the early birds grabbed them or claimed them by putting a towel and going into the water. So some of us were just standing. After less than an hour I went back to the ship. Toga night was good, the kids as well as the adults participated. In the past there were toga contest did not see one in the schedule this time. The concierge desk: These people are poorly trained and have no patience or fitness at all. My husband card was ** as if he was a minor so he could not charge any drinks. I personally went to the desk 3 times and was told everything is ok, try to use it no go, one night at the restaurant we ordered drinks and I did not have my card, therefore, after being there 4 nights, the barmaid, took the drinks back and said I can not give them to you your card is bad. This time my husband went down, spoke to 2 different people and was issued a new card, only to find that the minor code was never changed only the spelling was corrected. By this time he was so mad, he said he would not order any drinks. The other thing was that the cards kept getting demagnetized, and would not open the room. This department was the one that ruined the cruise the most for me. Then the credit card issue: During embarkation I gave a Discover Credit Card to charge my cabin as well as the other two. Two days into the cruise I was called and told they do not accept Discover. Luckily my hubby brought a Visa. We like to clean our wallets when going on a trip. So everything was again ok. By third day my third cabin people could not charge because they had an existing credit card, and can not add a new one. Hello, they said they did not accept Discover, Back to the desk, and this lady assured me everything was fixed. To make a long story short, no one was able to charge with the credit card only my husband, because the system only recognized him as the card barer,yet he could not charge drinks because he card was marked as a minor. And no one was smart enough to fix this. I had to leave some cash in order to be able to get a drink. Needless to say I was not able to purchase anything aboard the ship. On Friday, I went back down and again this lady told me everything is good and that the credit card issue was fixed now everyone can pay without any problem. On Sunday morning, we all get bills for the tips and the few drinks we were able to purchased on Saturday only. The bill said I had to go to cashiers office to liquidate in order to be able disembark. The line was huge. Many angry people, because they had given credit cards, and now where told they had to come up with cash. My credit card only covered my husband and not my children or myself. He bill was closed and the card could not be used for any other passengers. I was there for 1 1/2 hours to no avail. I became quite angry, and demanded to see a manager. He came 30 minutes later. He could not make the system accept the card. He asked me for cash. I had already spent on the port of calls most of my cash, I had to leave and borrow cash from people I was traveling with. And one couple I met that happens to be from my town. V I came up with the cash, and was finally leaving this boat for ever, My husband keyed in his card, then my daughter then me, and last my son, he was held to the side, and told his tipping bill was not cleared, and that he could not leave. My son is 16. He was calling me, mom, wait mom, to my surprised I said what are you doing, let's go, and the lady said he can not disembark. His bill is not paid for tips. I told the lady that I had just spent 1 1/2 hour clearing a mess, and she told me that my son had to go up because I wa already check out I could not accompany him. I showed her the paper that said everything was paid up in cash and had a seal. She kept saying not Louis my son name, on Luis, my husband name. I grabbed my son and told her, to call security if she had to, because he was leaving with me even if he had to jump the darn counter. She called the cashier manager who came down 15 minutes later, and told her again that everything was ok, and that receipt I showed was for the right person. because the Luis was fully paid with the credit card. He apologized, but the harm was more than done. Would I ever travel with Costa, not even for free. If you are traveling, know this, they dod not take discover, make sure, that from the first instance they put all the members in your party on the card, and make triple sure that the system is working, make sure your cabin does not have 214, or 220 after the first number or your will surely be on top of the night club and have non stop loud music all night, take a spray cleaner of some kind,and bring plenty of cash. In front of me there was lady who missed her plane, because her daughter account was charged $7 for something and she had to go to cashier and paid cash. luckily she had not swiped her disembark card and she was able to go with 5 year old daughter to the cashier, although the husband and son were waiting outside. I tell you it is scary. Read Less
Sail Date April 2007
Cat. 06 Oceanview Room/Number 1275 Costa Magica March 2007 Married couple with two small kids ( 2 1/2 and 5). Embarkation was a breeze. It took literally about 10 minutes to get through the line and get processed, and on board. The ... Read More
Cat. 06 Oceanview Room/Number 1275 Costa Magica March 2007 Married couple with two small kids ( 2 1/2 and 5). Embarkation was a breeze. It took literally about 10 minutes to get through the line and get processed, and on board. The ship has two main dining rooms: Smeralda and Portofino. We ate in Smeralda, it was beautiful and the wait staff was outstanding. They do an Italian Night where the waiters sing and dance, it was a lot of fun. The food was not great for the typical cruise ship food, I have had much better on Holland and Celebrity. It was mediocre and the portions were small. Stay away from steak, even filet of mignon was substandard. Outback has better steaks by far than this cruise ship! Bellaggio Buffet-On the 9th floor near the pool area. Well laid out for a buffet with many lines to go to. This buffet has a breakfast, lunch, dinner, and pizza until 1AM as well as afternoon tea at 4PM every day. The food is a lot of Italian dishes, salads, breads, and desserts. Not bad for a buffet. Grill-The grill near the pool is typical American Food...grilled hot dogs, hamburgers, turkey burgers, fries, salad, etc. There is also an ice cream stand at both the grill and buffet areas. Children's Club-I have two complaints about this club, first when I booked my cruise through COSTA directly they told me my 2 1/2 year-old could attend as long as she was potty trained. That is A HUGE LIE..they check birth certificates and did not allow my 2 1/2 year-old to attend the entire week. We booked our cruise on the premise that she could attend camp with her older sister. Secondly, after looking at the calendar of events for kids for my older child most of the activities were boring compared to other cruises. They played memory games, had a colorful aquarium day, danced, but it wasn't as well thought out or organized. Wasn't the typical PJ Parties, cake decorating, pizza making, costume parties that you find on the other ships...the spirit of the kids club just wasn't as vibrant and energetic. I would not recommend this ship for couples with YOUNG KIDS! Casino-The Casino was nice for the 5 minutes I was winning on a slot machine, I had my kids with me because I could not drop my younger one off at camp, and I was told no kids in the casino. That was a huge bummer, but what doesn't make sense is no kids in the casino but you have to go through the casino to get to the arcade. Entertainment-Dance lessons were a lot of fun (Cha, cha we did this one) and they offered belly dancing and salsa. They offered cooking classes which I did not attend, and they had a pizza tossing contest for adults that looked amusing. The theatre entertainment is definitely worth missing, it was horrible. It is like going to a Disney Show with generic characters, it was just awful. I could barley sit through one of the shows. Stateroom-large, good for a family, one double bed with a set of bunk beds. Nice bathroom, corian countertop, separate shower, vanity area with blow dryer, and ample closet space. We were in an oceanview room on the first floor. Immaculate! Disembarkation-Piece of cake...this was very easy and smooth compared to other ships. This cruise would not be one of my favorites, I have been on Norwegian, Holland America, Royal Caribbean, and Celebrity before trying Costa and I would say Costa is at the bottom of my list as far as cruises are concerned with Norwegian and Holland being at the top of my list. 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

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