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40 Island Escape Cruise Reviews

Cramped ship Lots of horrible people getting drunk, the public areas smelt of sick. The food was tasteless in the main restaurant The paying restaurant was good however and the ports were wonderful This is the first bad cruise ... Read More
Cramped ship Lots of horrible people getting drunk, the public areas smelt of sick. The food was tasteless in the main restaurant The paying restaurant was good however and the ports were wonderful This is the first bad cruise we have been on The buffet style meals meant we had fewer chances to talk to fellow passengers as people were constantly on the move. I prefer a set menu with a chance to chat before courses with other passengers We have been on other cruises, this was the worse. I would be OK with this had the cruise been cheap, but for the same price we had two weeks on p&o last year with spending money which covered our drinks. P&o was better value and the people were pleasant. Likewise cruise and maritime and Thompson dream were also good Island escape was butlins on sea Didn't do any excursions as we planned our own trips Entertainment was mixed but spoiled by the awful passengers Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
Family of 5 with 3 teenage boys age 14,16,18 First time on a cruise. I really don't know where to start, On booking this cruise we were told that the ship was old but still in lovely condition, I went into Thomson as I had read ... Read More
Family of 5 with 3 teenage boys age 14,16,18 First time on a cruise. I really don't know where to start, On booking this cruise we were told that the ship was old but still in lovely condition, I went into Thomson as I had read a few reviews and was getting a little worried, but was reassured that the ship was ported over winter and made like new, so it would be fine and not to worry. I was also told that internet was available to purchase on board (it was, but it never worked not for the whole two weeks) and we tried every day. My case managed to go missing between the coach and ship, it turned up later, not a great start. Then as I made our way to the cabin I was getting a little concerned. The ship is in a bad way, things hanging off, dents in doors and walls and things broken. Our cabins were no better, the one had a dent in the door which looked like it had been punched, inside, broken draws, dents and marks all over the wall, broken light switch's (well the ones that worked) rubbish TV you could not see anything out of the window as it always had condensation on it and paint drips all over it. The room was really bad, not even 2 star standard. Next day we were at sea all day so had no choice but to check out the ship. Pool is so small and jam packed, I walked around the decks for two hours trying to get a sun bed with no luck. Everywhere I looked I could just see things that needed fixing. I was getting really upset by the end of the first day at sea, the boys were moaning as they could not connect to the wifi, Teens club did not start until 10pm and there was just noting for them to do. This is not a holiday for Teens, maybe for younger kids under 10 or for older people. Music is The Shadows and stuff from the 60s and not the good stuff. I spoke to guest relations manager, I explained that I was really upset and did not feel this was what we had booked. She never once apologised and said if I wasn't happy I could pay for our own flights home when we ported in Palma on the following Tuesday. I was so shocked no sorry, no offer of a better room or to try to get us a hotel for the second week not even a free meal in the al carte restaurant. When I said I would like to speak to someone from Thomson she said they did not have a Thomson rep on board and gave me a number I could use to call which was just the regular number. I Emailed Thomson next day when we got on land to tell them of my issues and the email I got back was no better then the service received on board. They said staff on board had tried to help and where sorry I was not happy. I was really confused as no one had done anything to try and help us. The only good thing about this holiday was getting off the ship, the food was ok and our cabin steward was lovely, I got the expression that as the ship is ending this year no one cares anymore so are not bothered about helping you have a good holiday. The hall ways always smelt of sick, the ship was really rocky some nights, we had to come back to the ship to early most days so you don't get time to have a good look around we had to be back at the ship on the one day at 3pm! My son got sick on the second day with a sore throat, he was in a lot of pain and running a temp, so we took him down to see the ships doctor. He did not even examine his throat until I asked him if he was going to look, and then he said he may have angina, Now most people on the ship were over 50 and may have angina, but I am pretty sure he had tonsillitis. Over all this was the worst holiday we have ever experienced. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
After 5yrs of no holidays due to ill health, to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary what could be better than a lovely cruise, I couldn't of been more wrong. It was a disaster. Food was cold, meat was fatty, no fish meals just ... Read More
After 5yrs of no holidays due to ill health, to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary what could be better than a lovely cruise, I couldn't of been more wrong. It was a disaster. Food was cold, meat was fatty, no fish meals just slush & salad consisted of iceburge lettuce, tomatoes & onion (very Mediterranean) cold toast. couldn't wait to come home and cook myself a decent meal. The stench from the pool was sickly 1st two days before they decided to clean it, and even then I was not getting in it or nobody else was either by the looks of things. All inclusive, but you had to buy icecreams and what ever else they could get you to buy felt harassed by that .Cabin was small but ok & yes the ship is old I knew that, but people including myself are paying good money for this holiday so shouldn't be letting things slip, excursions were good but back on ship very bored until evening entertainment was average although I did love the comedian Ruddi. Staff were ok but wasn't going out of their way, I heard I member of staff being quite loud ,abrupt & extremely rude to 1 elderly gentlemen. Some choose what guest they seem to want to be nice to. Very upsetting & angry about it all and paid way over the odds for this cruise, not happy at all. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Booked two weeks on this ship in June 2015 but had to leave after the first week due to the rotten state of our cabin, poor food and ‘non inclusive’ (all inclusive) package. Thompson sells this as an ‘All Inclusive’ package but ... Read More
Booked two weeks on this ship in June 2015 but had to leave after the first week due to the rotten state of our cabin, poor food and ‘non inclusive’ (all inclusive) package. Thompson sells this as an ‘All Inclusive’ package but in reality only the minimum is supplied and everything else had to be upgraded. The ship itself is very tired and dated and is due to be de-commissioned. Clearly the operators have decided not to invest it its final season and as a result we found lots of defects both in the cabin and public areas. Service on-board is friendly but the guest relations team unable to assist with the most basic inquiry. If you enjoy a ‘holiday camp’ type experience then I think you would be ok, however to the more discerning traveller it falls well below the standards of even 1 star accommodation for a basic cabin. The food is very bland and repetitive with the buffet options just being continuously re-cycled. The drinks included with the all inclusive package are limited. In fact the crew were unable to tell me what larger I was drinking (although they use ‘fosters’ pumps to try and give the impression it’s a branded drink). All in all I would give this company a big wide birth and opt to go with one of the more established cruise operators. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
This was my first cruise with Thomson and will be my last As soon as we got on the ship we wanted to get off and asked if there was any nearby hotels that we could get transferred to only to be told it would cost us another £1600 to ... Read More
This was my first cruise with Thomson and will be my last As soon as we got on the ship we wanted to get off and asked if there was any nearby hotels that we could get transferred to only to be told it would cost us another £1600 to move!!!!!! The ship Island escape I hear will be scrapped next year.... Should have been scrapped Last year. Our outside cabin was awful, dirty stained carpets,prehistoric shower-(even felt dirty after the shower) beds really small and hard (asked for a double but had two singles) air con didn't work, we had a temp gauge on our alarm clock that read 24 degrees, TV signal was very poor so not worth watching. Food in the Buffet and restaurant was ok but not much choice if you are a plain eater. The shows I couldn't comment because we couldn't see them, there was no stage so all on one level and if you were at the back no chance of seeing what was going on. Security on the ship was unbelievable, in Tangier Africa there was no security getting back on the ship so anyone could have walked on with a weapon ...Shocking!! also no scanning in several ports prior to boarding the ship ,as if the ship security couldn't be bothered. The ONLY good thing I can say about this ship is the Staff and the all inclusive drinks package was a bonus and kept flowing. If you have never been on a cruise ship before then you will be ok on this, if you HAVE cruised before with other cruise lines then I think you will be very disappointed. I have been on 20+ cruises before and this is by far the worst cruise ship (ferry) I have ever been on, I was counting down the days to get off........... I know the ship is old, but dirty stains on carpets, toilet seat, tiles falling off walls is not acceptable. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
Where do i start . i would begin by tellling every one who has booked to cancel 'get there money back.DO not waste it .I have just come home . MY friend and i have had a dreadful time .ROOMS dirty scruffy smelly.Beds looked like i had ... Read More
Where do i start . i would begin by tellling every one who has booked to cancel 'get there money back.DO not waste it .I have just come home . MY friend and i have had a dreadful time .ROOMS dirty scruffy smelly.Beds looked like i had the whole of the welsh rugby team on it at once. great big dip in the middle .Sheets thinner than a tea towel .Carpet stuck to the floor with duck tape .Sinks and shower brown and rusty .DO not believe them about the entertainment ,If i had heard that singer with the pony tail sing NeiLDiamond once more i would have jumped over board .Sams shows repeated all day long every day. The commiedians were rubbisH FOOD roughly the same every night just has another name on it .The staff some very nice .SOME awful .A light fitting fell from the cabin on to my friend s head ,We were then asked where the broken piece was .AGGG It was fitted up broken .PLEASE do not say we did not pay a lot we did 1.200 for one person . The ports were lovely .You do not need to stay in you cabin ,you might say ,you do have to wash ,and sleep .one more thing please take english money with you ,YOU WILL NOT GET YOUR 15 POUNDS BACK FOR THE SAFE KEY.BACK .YOU will not have a kettle in your room you will not .have a milky coffee unless you ask at dinner .You will not have a clean cup they are yellow mugs .THERE IS ALWAYS FOOD UNDER THE TABLES.THICK RIM COLLECTED ON THE TABLES.MY friend deck with balcony .My self deck4 with window i could no see out of .PLEASE DO NOT WASRE YOUR HARD EARNED CASH ON THIS HILIDAY FROM HELL Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
We were having our Bathroom renovated and needed to get away for a week at short notice. We didn’t want to spen a fortune as we have already had our main holiday this year. After some searching and discussion we decided on a ... Read More
We were having our Bathroom renovated and needed to get away for a week at short notice. We didn’t want to spen a fortune as we have already had our main holiday this year. After some searching and discussion we decided on a Mediterranean Cruise. For just over £700 per person we had the choice of Island Cruises, a TUI Company or NCL. Both were going to similar destinations so we chose the Island Cruises option as although neither of us drink a lot they were “all inclusive” which would mean no extra costs at the end. It all started well. The flight from Doncaster was on time and transfers from the airport to the port in Palma smooth and efficient. It was only after we got on-board that things started to deteriorate rapidly. The corridors were narrow and low ceilinged giving a claustrophobic feel and the wall panels were streaked with water stains. The cabin was no better. Cabin 9500 facing forward. We expected small, but this made our cabin on the Norwegian Coastal Ferry (Hurtigruten) earlier in the year look like a Palace. There were two single beds, even though we had requested they be made into a double, a request we rescinded once we saw how narrow they were as trying to sleep side by side in two such narrow beds would have been impossible. This turned out to be a good idea as not only were they tiny they were also hard as a board. The cabin also had an air-conditioning vent which we were informed by the Steward could not be turned off consequently we were either too hot or too cold with a strong draught. In fairness the cabin steward was very helpful and did his best to keep the cabin clean which is quite difficult when there is blackened grout in the bathroom and a failed and misty double glazing unit. We then decided to have a drink. I usually drink Bacardi Silver, so not a Premium drink at all. However the house white Run was Kamal (Google it if you dare) it was a slight upgrade to lighter fuel. My partners Vodka was the same so we decided to upgrade to the Premium drinks package. Who knew that Bacardi Silver and Smirnoff Red are “Premium” drinks? Having paid to upgrade our drinks package we then were told, two days later, that they had run out of Skyy Vodka, day 3 on a 7 day cruise and they run out! Onto the food! Normal dining is in two restaurants, both buffet and both average at best. If you want a decent meal then you need to go to the Oasis Restaurant where the food is excellent. Oh did I mention that costs extra! This was when we discovered that Island Cruises all inclusive is all inclusive in name only! Want a decent drink?.........Certainly, only £12.95 per day per person extra. Want a decent meal?............only £14.95 per person per meal extra Want a lock for your room safe…………………..That’ll be £15 thank you How about a bottle of water…………..No problem only £1.60 A sandwich in the Coffee bar? ………………….£2 please Charity donation (whether you ask them to or not)……………………..£2 Yes we could have asked for this to be removed but it should never have been added to the bill without permission in the first palce! Don’t get me wrong. There were positives. Most of the staff were great, although the Beverages Manager was pretty unhelpful and non-caring. So to sum up. Would I go cruising again? Yes, definitely. Would I use Thomson or Island Cruises? Never! Island Escape, Island Cruises only ship is over 30 years old. A converted Car Ferry that is poorly maintained with many failed and broken double glazing units. The hull is a patchwork where rust patches are over painted with white paint. The lift panels and the corridor ceiling panels are dented, presumably due to excessive celebrating on the way back from the bars. It seems to cater for those whose only aim is to stand at the bar and get drunk, but if, like us, you want a bit of comfort for your hard earned money then this cruise is not for you.   Read Less
Sail Date September 2014
I have just returned from my first cruise. I chose Thomson as it was all inclusive. My first impression of the ship was disappointing. Overall this ship badly needs updating with furniture, fittings and cabin decor. The bar area looked ... Read More
I have just returned from my first cruise. I chose Thomson as it was all inclusive. My first impression of the ship was disappointing. Overall this ship badly needs updating with furniture, fittings and cabin decor. The bar area looked just like a working mens club, it also smelt of stale cigarettes from the days when smoking was allowed. The pool area was badly managed. Despite notices around the poolside stating no jumping or diving the young teenagers on this trip ignored all efforts by myself to stop this and the staff did nothing to adhere to this request. It was stated in the daily info adult swim time from 4-5pm. the staff did nothing to adhere to this and allowed the teenagers etc to carry on using the pool for their antics. Needless to say the parents did nothing to control their children. There was never enough sun beds to cater for all the guests and as the ship was full I was hard pressed to find any seating during the first day at sea. On the positive side the indonesian staff were brilliant and very efficient. The food was plentiful if not a bit samey. I ate in the alacarte restaurant and for an extra £15 it was well worth it, especially to enjoy waiter service. Overall a disppointing introduction to cruising. In future I will save up and cruise on a well respected and upgraded cruise line where I can enjoy 5 star treatment in 5 star surroundings. Read Less
Sail Date July 2014
Having enjoyed a few cruises, including Thomson who we have always found to be extremely good, we booked this last minute, all inclusive, on The Island Escape..."its' cheap so we will take it for what it is" we agreed, after ... Read More
Having enjoyed a few cruises, including Thomson who we have always found to be extremely good, we booked this last minute, all inclusive, on The Island Escape..."its' cheap so we will take it for what it is" we agreed, after all Thomson cruise have never let us down. Sadly "taking it for what it is" was so very difficult! Firstly having registered my card at reception, I have been charged for items that were not ours, albeit corrected and refunded, now they have just taken payment for a second time for on board services, which I have spent an hour on the phone to try and get rectified. 15 DAYS LATER AND i AM STILL WAITING FOR A REFUND. One lift out of service (and has been for some time apparently) made life difficult when most of the port departures were from the lowest deck (3) Our level too which, although it was very basic and old, was clean and tidy. Sadly not quiet though, no problem with engines noises, but the sound of a steam press and I assume bedding being hung, woke us late at night and very early in the morning. Food: stands out as being cheap compared to other ships, the two restaurants always served the same menu, so no point looking for a variation, unless you want to pay extra to sit behind some pinned up net curtaining in the main thoroughfare to and from the Beachcomber restaurant( saw one lady trip up over these) The usual photography on boarding and around the shop happens, but the photoshopping of the background on many of the pictures seemed to lack professional touch, many of them the background ran over the subject? Entertainment: Feel a little sorry for some of the acts having to work through an antiquated sound system. the classical lady singer in particular had people leaving whilst she was performing, the high notes were just too much for the system. Afternoon tea is a pleasure we enjoy...not here though. Same sandwiches everyday, just no imagination from the chef or perhaps his boss and the cream? what was that? it certainly wasn't real cream. If you like your fruit, only the cheap fruits here, don't expect to see a grape anywhere on board. Excursions are good although a lot of emphasis is put on you not going anywhere on your own in case you don't make it back to the ship in time. "Use our excursions we will not leave without you", how then did the coach leave behind a poor lady and her disabled son in Rome???? thank goodness they were squeezed onto another coach after having the fright of their lives...not good Thomson! All in all I suppose it is what it is, but we now do wonder if the whole Thomson fleet have cut corners. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
We booked our cruise quite a way ahead and I would honestly say wait until nearer the time as you can get a much better deal. Thomson don't allow you to on-line check in, so we arrived at 3am (3 hours prior) at our local airport. It ... Read More
We booked our cruise quite a way ahead and I would honestly say wait until nearer the time as you can get a much better deal. Thomson don't allow you to on-line check in, so we arrived at 3am (3 hours prior) at our local airport. It was very quiet and we went through the process very quickly. Boarding was on time and again the flight was on time, we paid extra for reserved seating and extra leg room. If you don't pay extra then it's the same old process as other airlines you get seated apart. When getting to Palma airport, there were people with boards showing us where to go to get the coach. The coaches were crammed and we had to sit apart where we could find, It was about 25 minutes to the port. Not very comfortable to be honest and I didn't enjoy this part. When you arrive at the port they give you an envelope with room keys and luggage labels and you put these on your cases and they take them to your room. We had to provide our card information and then we went on board. When we went on board we went to deck 8 (where our cabin was) and looked at our room. It was much better than expected but you could see it was very outdated, marks on the walls where the bunk beds were and tired carpet and furnishings. The bathroom was small but adequate and again needed updating, just a shower there but many of us would have liked a bath. The bed sheets were very worn and I didn't like they kept catching on my feet. There wasn't a fridge in our room but drinks left on the dressing table, not included in the package. There was a box tv and a hairdryer. Lots of storage in the room with drawers and a wardrobe. The TV had a couple of film channels, which changed daily(showing two films on separate channels every day(think about 5 times in a day), news of excursions, news, video about life jackets and live video of the front of the ship. Walking around the ship, it looked quite tired and in need of a major update to be honest. This was our second cruise and I found that people weren't as friendly as the Thomson Dream we went on the year previously. In fact a lot of bar staff were rude or ignored you, wasn't impressed. The all inclusive package wasn't all inclusive as a lot of things were not included and many of the premium brands were extra, as well as you could only use this package between 10am - 2am. I don't know how they get away with calling it all inclusive. The drinks were okay but a lot of the included cocktails weren't very nice so I ended up drinking soft drinks most of the time. There was quite a bit of choice when it came to the food but if you have dietary needs then you are stuffed. I am vegetarian and they constantly had pasta in tomato sauce, which was always horrible hardly any choice and the food was better in the island restaurant compared to the other buffet restaurant. Still the food wasn't great. The only time I enjoyed a meal was eating at the Oasis restaurant, which was £34.99 extra and I don't think you should have to pay extra to enjoy a meal on a cruise. All in all I never enjoyed a meal at either buffet restaurant. The excursions were mixed, very expensive and most of them not worth the money. We did Rome in a day, you get to see a lot but its a very expensive tour and very rushed. One hour and a half away from port so a lot of time on the coach. I would say go by train if you want to do this tour and be prepared to rush around. We also did Florence/Pisa, a more relaxed tour as these cities are quite small. Much more enjoyable but again expensive and far away from the port. Monaco/Monte Carlo not at all worth it, £80 we paid to see each place for an hour, most of time spent on the coach. I would not recommend at all. Corsica we just had a walk around, its a small town and right near the port and Barcelona the same thing, the port is 10-15 minutes walk to the main city. You can get a metro to Sagrada Familia. We got a bill through our door the night prior to departure and also information. You leave your cabin keys in the cabin. We had to put our suitcases out the evening prior to leaving and they take them downstairs. It was a total pain finding our suitcases on the day and would recommend going down there earlier to get them. Palma airport check in took ages but everything from there was quite quick. Quite a few shops in the airport. Overall positives were that the room was better than expected and the itinerary. Most of the other staff were okay. Negatives: lack of choice on the 'inclusive' menu, food was poor and bad choice for vegetarians, bar staff generally didn't have the right attitude and the ship was tired. I can't comment on the entertainment because we never saw a show we fancied on the cruise news, but there didn't seem to be anywhere to have a nice peaceful drink. Every bar had a singer or entertainment. I definitely wouldn't book this cruise again, although I would consider a Thomson's one. For the price, it wasn't really a bargain cruise for what you got.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
We have recently returned from a cruise of the Western Med and this was the first time we have cruised on the Island Escape and it will be our last. Firstly the good points. The embarkation at he port of Palma was very slick and ... Read More
We have recently returned from a cruise of the Western Med and this was the first time we have cruised on the Island Escape and it will be our last. Firstly the good points. The embarkation at he port of Palma was very slick and professional, indeed quicker than other cruise lines we have travelled with. The second good point was the staff which includes the waiters and cabin attendants. They were all friendly, polite and very professional but thats where the good points finish. The cabin was small and very tired looking. The ship is currently in dock for three months before it starts cruising again in the New Year and I hope Thomson's have budgeted for an overall complete decoration of the ship during this period, but I doubt it. The 'informal' dress code for dinner was a joke. Although some dressed for dinner quite a few did not and quite frankly were more suitably dressed to eat at McDonalds. The food is buffet style with limited choice, repetative and nothing outstanding. Sometimes the meals were barely warm. You could eat at another restaurant with a supplement of £14.99 which we did and was far more superior and waiter service. The entertainment was substandard and many guests complained that the theatre was too small and unable to find seating and therefore many could not attend the shows. Although quite frankly those that could not attend the shows did not miss much. The ship had to stay in Corfu overnight and we missed out on the port of Messina. This was due according to the captains announcement, to bad weather/wind, despite two other cruise ship's embarking from the port with no aparent difficulties. The captain who sounded extremely bored announced ' thats life' perhaps something you don't exactly want to hear when some were looking forward to trips from Messina. Surprisingly he also said that he had difficulties leaving the port. However we heard no evidence or noise generally associated with the ship making its departure in the normal way and furthermore we also noticed that the ship remained tired up on the quay side during the period when he was 'having difficulties' departing. So we are sceptical of the resaons given by the captain. The trips, of which we went on three, were well organised and the visit along the Amalfi coast was excellent. Overall I would not recommend Island Escape. It is a shabby ship in dire need of refurbishment and Thomson's need to undertake a detailed look at its on-board catering facilities and take note of the many critics about it's informal dress code. In short it was very much like cruising with Chavs. Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
I have just been on the island eskip for seven days & I can honestly say that after 20-30 cruises with thomson, it was the most disgusting barge that it has been my misfortune to set foot on. 1) The food was terrible & barely ... Read More
I have just been on the island eskip for seven days & I can honestly say that after 20-30 cruises with thomson, it was the most disgusting barge that it has been my misfortune to set foot on. 1) The food was terrible & barely hot. 2) I know that it is has an informal dress code, but come on!! people going into the restaurant with their nightclothes on is a joke!! 3) All inclusive, another joke!! the spirits were so called "local spirits", totally unpalatable!! costs about 3 euros per bottle in the port supermarket After all is said & done I can say that the staff on board the barge were of an excellent order & did take some of the edge off of what was a bad experience. (cleaners & waiters) The cabin we had was not much bigger than a shoebox, but the cabin steward was excellent, cleanliness & hygiene were of an exemplary condition. I would not go back on the island eskip if it were offered for free with spending money thrown in. I have another cruise booked for next month (November) on "the Spirit" if that does not meet the standard with Thomson cruises of the past It will be time to go elsewhere. "Nuff said" Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
If you have booked this cruise, you will have to go and enjoy which we tried to do, as was too late for us It is a FERRY BOAT not a cruise; the facilities ie so called swimming pool for which there is only one is 21 feet long, sunbeds are ... Read More
If you have booked this cruise, you will have to go and enjoy which we tried to do, as was too late for us It is a FERRY BOAT not a cruise; the facilities ie so called swimming pool for which there is only one is 21 feet long, sunbeds are 1.2 inch apart, people everywhere, 2 buffett restaurants which serve mainly the same food; terrible people eating everything in sight, hardly anything is cooked it is all packaged and put in the oven, the cabins are awful, together with the areas on the ferry boat. Entertainment team is just the ships entertainment team whom were very good, but do not expect too many other outside entertainment. They have a theatre, hurrendous pub and bingo on site(lovely); full of people with hardly any with any calibre or self respects, largest bellies ever; clothing was awful. The pricing is hurrendous for this cruise, when it is dearer than the top 5 proper cruise companies.... this is not a cruise in any shape or form. GOOD POINT: STaff are relatively friendly(not overboard), captain was present on a few occassions and praised all his team   Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
After our first ever cruise holiday aboard the Island Escape we returned very disappointed, this cruise was part of my wife's birthday present and due to the terrible experience aboard the Island Escape it ruined the surprise.In ... Read More
After our first ever cruise holiday aboard the Island Escape we returned very disappointed, this cruise was part of my wife's birthday present and due to the terrible experience aboard the Island Escape it ruined the surprise.In general I booked an outside cabin on deck seven which was in a terrible state of repair. The cabin was very dated and showed signs of age and wear, nothing like the photo in the brochure. The air con unit sounded like a constantly boiling kettle which was very annoying.There were holes in the walls covered over with plasters, the bathroom door was bashed to bits. The bathroom was very dated with taps & shower unit showing signs of age (discoloured chrome), the bathroom mirror needed replacing as the mirror backing was missing around the edges.Avoid eating on deck 10 as the food is appalling for a cruise ship, we have had better food in a 3* hotel, with salads served on hot plates, hot food served on cold plates that's if it was hot.Nova virus was on board but we think it was more due to food poisoning as most of the food was cold, even the gravy was cold.The all inclusive deal is not as clear as you think but also you get people who think they have to drink all day & night with the minority being drunk & rowdyspoiling the atmosphere for the rest of the ship.Be warned that if you are planning a cruise we advise you choose a higher standard ship. Read Less
Sail Date June 2013
We had a really bad cruise experience as weather at sea was very bad. Seasick on day at sea leaving Palma for Corsica we were unable to dock at Propriano as planned and instead went to Ajaccio although that was a good stop. Next stop ... Read More
We had a really bad cruise experience as weather at sea was very bad. Seasick on day at sea leaving Palma for Corsica we were unable to dock at Propriano as planned and instead went to Ajaccio although that was a good stop. Next stop Civitavecchia - had great day in Rome, however on way out of port weather was very rough on 24May and ship made a sharp turn on the way out which resulted in most people, drinks and dishes on the floor and the ship listed way over to the side. I can't believe no one was seriously hurt. Many people were very nervous to stay on board that night. The weather never improved and apart from the second last night the seas were rough and ship very noisy. There was little opportunity to get out on deck. Another port was changed and we visited Toulon instead of St Raphael which again was a good stop, however not what people had signed up for. We requested wheelchair assistance on arrival and departure from the ship and this was an excellent service. Food was mediocre and cocktails tasted different on every order. Very poor standard of catering and I was disappointed as I had high expectations from others people's experience of cruises. The help yourself buffet became service only about half way through the cruise and no explanation was given so I thought maybe people were helping themselves to too much, however I later heard another passenger saying her husband was suffering from Norivirus and may be leaving the ship for hospital and not home the following day. It would have been nice to know this was on board the ship. Although there was an all gratuity included policy, it was obvious that many staff were expecting tips but not all. Entertainment was excellent but was hard to enjoy as I was so nervous about ship sinking, but it did take my mind of things. I had paid extra for a suite but was still very small and smelt very musty and I had a headache every day on board which I think was caused by the constant air conditioning overhead in bedroom. Room was kept clean but the décor was very tired so it still never felt very fresh. It was a great way to get around major cities in a week but I could not recommend as I don't think cruises are safe after this. The shops were selling old stock and at not very discounted prices. I found it hard to believe that people say you would never know you were on a cruise as we lurched from one port to another. Due to the incident at Civitavecchia,Thomson has offered 100 per adult and 50 per off the next Thomson holiday booked, which I think is a great way to drum up some more sales......... Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
My daughter and I were on the Island Escape on w/c 21st May. This was our first time (and last).I have been on 3 other Thomson ships and comparing it to them I found indeed as per the brochure states the Island Escape was more laidback. ... Read More
My daughter and I were on the Island Escape on w/c 21st May. This was our first time (and last).I have been on 3 other Thomson ships and comparing it to them I found indeed as per the brochure states the Island Escape was more laidback. Which suited us fine. Staff were absolutely brilliant and couldnt have been better. The Island Dining room was nicely laid out, no queues there. Great waiters. Food good.It was self service buffet til about 4 days in to the cruise where it changed to served by staff from the buffet. (as we were to find out this was due to illness on board. Cabin was pretty basic -think budget hotel furniture- but very clean. Public areas looked better. Though they seemed very crowded in bars etc compared to other Thomson ships. These were the plus points.Comparing it to to other Thomson Ships drinks package, it was poor. A very basic choice of unbranded sprits. White rum, vodka, Gin, no version of Baileys etc.Lager by the half pint.Though the wine was good and the white rum fine. Entertainment was also very good. The reason I would not go back again was due to the unfortunate weather. Not of course that can be helped, but I dont think this ship handles at all well in bad weather.weather was truly awful and relentless for most of the cruise. Both if us seasick all of the day at sea. Then almost every night was sleepless and quesy because of the banging and lurching. Two change of ports due to the bad weather. Worse, when leaving Civitaveccia the ship listed badly. I honestly say I have never been so scared in my life. We were in the dining room and food and glasses and people fell. I know there were injuries but a miracle none seem to have been serious. I wanted to leave the ship but as noone spoke to us or made any further announcements other than the Capitain immediately afterwards who said he had to make a sudden turn to avoid rocks!I wanted to leave the ship at the next port. but I had no idea how to make arrangements for planes and travel or where the nearest airport or availability was. We had trips booked the next day to Florence and Pisa so we just decided to go and assume the worst was over. A lady on the bus became ill and was very sick and had to be returned to the ship. On returning to the ship we discovered people had left supposedly at Thomsons expense.I would have definitely have left if we had the option. Then people began to fall ill. Out of 6 of us who dined together, 3 became ill on board.1 of them had to have two injections and they were considering moving her to hospital at one stage. The buffet was changed to being served by staff, which was fine. But on asking we were advised there was no problem with sickness it was a change of hygiene practise. I fell ill the day I returned home and missed a long awaited operation as I had to be clear of sickness for 48hours. Again unfortunate fact of life, norovirus on ships. The good points really were the hard working cheerful staff, and they really went out of their way to make sure passengers in the dining room were ok after the listing incident. Despite the good points. I would not go on the Island Escape again. It doesn't appear from my experience to handle at all well in bad weather and I just wouldn't risk another week of seasickness. I still feel over a week after the event that we had a very lucky escape leaving Civitaveccia, and I think perhaps we should not have sailed or been so close to the rocks, and the outcome could have been terrible. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
I have decided to write this review as I have just read the "I can't bear a snob" review... We are a middle aged couple who have been on Thomson spirit/Celebration and the Island Star when Thomson had it so obviously enjoy ... Read More
I have decided to write this review as I have just read the "I can't bear a snob" review... We are a middle aged couple who have been on Thomson spirit/Celebration and the Island Star when Thomson had it so obviously enjoy what people call the "budget end". The dump of the fleet "Island escape" is the most awful ship we have ever been on. We, unfortunately were on the ship when the "norvo Virus" outbreak was on there which Thomson didn't want people to talk about. (Quite funny daily counting the "confined to cabin markers on the doors"!! Anyway putting the food poisoning aside and the awful weather (no one can help that) I will give you a totally constructive opinion of the ship... .To Start with it needs totally refurbishing. The exterior is shabby, extremely unloved and tired (Now I know its no P&O or Royal Caribbean but I am not comparing to them). The cabins are ridiculous, old extremely dated cabins with old fashioned furnishings that look like haven't been updated since 1982. The cleaning crew are great, but you cant make the Ritz if you've only got Rigsbys house to work with! Now then The "A/I" YUK drinks package. Everything you would like is not included (or if you like vodka etc its the most awful cheap alternative you can imagine). No Baileys (or baileys substitute included) or Malibu (or cheap alternative) etc etc. Be one of the elite and pay for the things you enjoyed, which used to be included in the standard A/I and you were treated a bit better. It was though Thomson had told the bar staff to serve the premium drinks payers quicker leave the A/I cheapseats as long as possible. My husband likes bitter, this was supposedly worthingtons I think, and my husband could not drink it anymore after one and was adamant it was not like any bitter he had ever tasted... Same goes for the lager. We are no alcoholics but when you go all inc you expect to find something you can drink when socialising at night. The animaton team at the time had the lives of royalty..occasionally showed their face in the daytime for their one hour quiz game then disappeared off the face of the earth till nightime. PLEASE do not go on this ship if you have a certain budget go for and MSC and upgrade to their A/I for hardly any difference in price. We are not snobs (far from it) but this ship was that bad that we have said we will never go with Thomson again which is a shame. I really cant get my head round the 4 and 5* reviews of this ship it is totally and utterly baffling.   Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
I'll start with positives - the crew and the ports of call. The negatives - The food - lukewarm or cold both in the Beachcomber and the other dining room. When we pointed this out, for about the third time, we were told it could ... Read More
I'll start with positives - the crew and the ports of call. The negatives - The food - lukewarm or cold both in the Beachcomber and the other dining room. When we pointed this out, for about the third time, we were told it could be taken away and heated. I wanted hot food not reheated. Bland and monotonous, same dishes repeated again and again. If I never see a chicken leg again I'll be happy. Some people were comparing the food to school meals. It wasn't even up to that standard. The only good meal we had in the thirteen days was in the Oasis restaurant, which cost extra. The service and the food was first class - which is what I expect every day on a cruise The all inclusive package included only about 25 per cent of the drinks available. The spirits were so bad I'm sure I could have drunk a bottle of rum with no ill effects (I didn't). Drinks and snacks in the cabin were not included -a can of Red Bull was over £5 and a mini tube of Pringles was £3.90. No free coffee at the pool area (it is an all inclusive ship). To get a coffee one had to go to the Beachcomber and then carry it back, past the spa and through the gym and one extremely heavy door. Health and safety was obviously not a priority. The same hazards were obvious in the Beachcomber, with people wandering around looking for tables while carrying food (perhaps that's why it was cold) and hot drinks. The theatre -I think it seated about 350 so even though each show was on twice one had to be there about an hour before to get a seat. We only saw three shows in the thirteen days. The cabins - no hair dryers, chipped sinks, cracked tiles, the smallest cabin I have ever been in my life. Some people we met were in three different cabins because there was water leakage. A common sight was big industrial style machines drying out carpets. The price of the excursions. The one to Rome cost £84. Minimises at the port were taking six people to Rome for 27 euros each. This included a commentary and stops at all the sites of interest. I have been on all of Thomsons ships but this was at a different low level. Perhaps it was telling that on at least three occasions we were told that the island escape was not a Thomsons ship. Read Less
Sail Date March 2013
We booked the 8 day Olives and Ouzo Cruise aboard the Island Escape departing 30th October 2012 through Cruise Deals, and arranged Special Assistance at the airports by telephone with Thomson, although done individually it is all part of ... Read More
We booked the 8 day Olives and Ouzo Cruise aboard the Island Escape departing 30th October 2012 through Cruise Deals, and arranged Special Assistance at the airports by telephone with Thomson, although done individually it is all part of the TUI Group, and this being our 5th cruise with TUI and another one with P&O we had an idea of the standard to expect. Our outbound from Cardiff Airport was OK, but when we reached Palma Airport where the people responsible for Special Assistance refused all but one request for a wheelchair (although there were ample hidden behind a screen) and forced disabled passengers to hobble through the airport, with very few company representatives to direct or assist to waiting coaches. On arrival at the port terminal again help was sparse and passengers were unsure where to go to label their baggage, and then to board the ship. The cabins were somewhat a disappointment very small but very clean, with two under standard size beds against either wall (which were uncomfortable) and a small table between, plus hanging space and a dressing table with hairdryer, also a shower room with wc and hand-basin which was quite adequate. Our cabin had a small outside deck over part of it and we were woken daily by staff dragging sunbeds across it as they put them out for the day. This is the tiniest cabin I have encountered and I and others nicknamed them the shed, some passengers found even more derogatory names. The safe in the cabin cost an extra £15 to use where on when we went on P&O Ventura there was no charge. The restaurants, The Beachcomber and Island Restaurant were both buffets which we thought would be ideal because and it made a change from having to dress up for formal nights as on other cruises. The Island restaurant although a buffet you had to wait to be seated, then queue for the buffet, on one night we entered the restaurant at 6-15 and finally got to the buffet at 7'o'clock the ship seemed absolutely full. The Beachcomber buffet had its own problems and seating there at meal times was at a premium. Although there was plenty of food on offer there wasn't a lot of variation as everything seemed to be covered in some sauce or other, there was very little that wasn't covered in some sticky mess that tasted very bland. The food was generally luke warm and time you got to your table and ate half the other half was cold. Fortunately there was a very good selection of fresh fruit. Hygiene in the restaurants and the ship was good, everywhere was clean and staff made sure you used the antibacterial dispensers when entering the food areas. The Ocean Theatre shows were not the best, thought we didn't see them all but what we saw didn't inspire us to queue again. Apart from two of the cast who could actually sing very well, and Ross Roberts the Cruise Director who put so much into everything he did, without them I would have left the theatre very early. The one show that was excellent was the guest comedienne Brenda Collins who was hilarious. The theatre suffered the same problems as the rest of the ship, the amount of passengers seemed too many as some people queued for both performances of evening shows and were unable to get in the theatre on either occasion because it was full. The stage in the theatre was a joke, just a step up from the floor level so if you weren't in the front few rows vision was very poor. The bars and lounges were always full, and there was no other seating as on other ships where seating is available in places away from the bars. The ship was just too full! All outside areas seemed to be available to smokers and for a non-smoker it is nice to be able to sit in the sun away from the stink now and again the opportunities for this were few and far between. The ship couldn't dock in Kalamati and tenders had to be employed, three tenders were used to shuttle passengers back and forth and this was very well organised. The crew apart from the odd exception which was usually the bar waiters, were very helpful and good natured and worked very hard to provide a good service. The ship throughout was very clean and hygiene was a priority, the main problem we and others saw was the ship was far too full for the facilities. People we spoke to were divided, some said they were quite happy others, about 50%, were like us disappointed. If this had been our first cruise we might have enjoyed it more but having experienced far better we expected more. Would we cruise again on the Island Escape definitely 100% NO. Read Less
Sail Date October 2012
Four days before we were due to sail our prebooked shore excursion was cancelled, we were advised by HO to contact Shore Excursions on arrival on board, we were shrugged away and told to contact HO on our return. As a less able ( not ... Read More
Four days before we were due to sail our prebooked shore excursion was cancelled, we were advised by HO to contact Shore Excursions on arrival on board, we were shrugged away and told to contact HO on our return. As a less able ( not disabled) this excursion was the only excursion we felt was suitable for our needs. Apart from a cream tea 1.5 hour trip for �£30, being as we could get a cream tea on-board everyday there seemed little point, the other trip was a boat trip to see dolphins , when the ship was followed by dolphins out from Gibraltar there again seemed little point. Thomsons say because the shore excursions are "optional" it is not part of their cruise contract. We complained on our first day as we had no hot water and the air conditioning was very noisy, during this compalint we were interrupted by a lady who had raw sewage coming up her shower there was an large influx of people queueing up to complain about strong sewage smells coming from their cabins, so at that point we hurriedly left our complaint and left the staff to deal with the others. Thomsons were adised of the state of the cabin en-suite and shown photographs of it, they state it was in quite acceptable condtion I have posted photographs on this site, they have no plans to refurbish, . After almost six months of trying to get straight answers and repeatedly reasking questions I received a response to say they had nothing further to add and would have no further communcication with me. Do not under any circumstances go on this ship. The staff were obviously very embarrased at these conditions and I do feel Thomsons are taking advantage of the wonderful staff, but, with the best will in the world, " You can't make a silk purse out of a sows ear" If you want to know any more , please do not hesitate to contact me. Read Less
Sail Date May 2012
My husband and i booked this cruise through thomson and were really looking forward to it. The cruise was our honeymoon and we paid three and a half thousand pounds for it. I was told that the ship was having a refit at the time of our ... Read More
My husband and i booked this cruise through thomson and were really looking forward to it. The cruise was our honeymoon and we paid three and a half thousand pounds for it. I was told that the ship was having a refit at the time of our booking and we would be amongst the first passengers aboard it sounded fantastic. We embarked on the 16th august 2011 and nothing could have prepared us for the squalour we were to endure for the next fortnight.The cabin was so small we both could not side by side in it.The whole room had water damage which ment the walls were brown with water stains. The carpet was covered in red wine and was so thread bear you could see the hessian backing.When i opened the bathroom door i was greeted with the most disgusting bathroom id ever seen. The whole place stank of sewage and was thick with damp and mould. After two weeks of being subjected to this filthy bathroom my husband and myself came home with skin infections on our feet from the unsanitary conditions from the bathroom floor and rancid carpet. i broke into tears this was not what what me and my husband had saved and worked so hard for.We went to reception to complain but were told there were no other cabins so we were stuck with the hovel.Over the next fortnight we found out lots of rather unsavoury things about the boat.It is in fact an ex ferry thomson own it and make money on it but wash their hands of any responsibility of it. I booked a thomson cruise on the advise of one of their travel advisors and this is not a thomson cruise.The whole ship is dirty,tired and scruffy. and in need of a complete refit.The refit i had been told about by the thomson advisor was actually on the boats engines and not on the ship itself. If you go to thomsons website this ferry/ship is advertised alongside their other ships and unless you are told it isnt a thomson ship you wouldnt know.The price was suppose to include tips so you didnt have to pay any extra but after paying thousands of pounds for a squat i think they should be included.The bar staff do not get paid a proper wage so have to sell as much alcohol or ciggeretes as they can that means they are constantly harrassing you to spend money. To be honest i was infuriated by this pushy selling until i found out that for a 90hr week they had been paid around ?71. These are poor people from poor countries working to send money home to their families i felt so sorry for them.Jobs are hard to find in there countries and this cruise firm has totally taken advantage of there situation i am disgusted.The ports of call were ok but some were so far away from the main points of interest i.e rome or monaco you have no choice but to pay for ship excursions most of which are really expensive.A word of advice unless you,ve gone it alone before and you know where you are going do not do it.We did and it was the most stressful few hours of our lives if your late the boat will leave without you unless of course, you booked the expensive ship excursion then the boat waits.The food was nothing to write home about and the same food seemed to be trotted out on a rota.In summary do not book this cruise unless you want to throw your money away.Me and my husband are in the process of putting in a complaint against thomson we want a refund and we will not shut up and go away untill we do. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
We had never cruised before and had heard wonderful things about cruising from friends so decided to give it a try, Our travel agent talked us into a trip on the island escape and we started to look forward to the cruise....Then I started ... Read More
We had never cruised before and had heard wonderful things about cruising from friends so decided to give it a try, Our travel agent talked us into a trip on the island escape and we started to look forward to the cruise....Then I started to read the reviews on cruise critic and began to worry if we had done the right thing!!! I convinced myself that it cant be that bad and we all know that review sites such as this generally have the complaints more than praise but i have never been so wrong in my life!!! Imagine a 2 star Spanish hotel but with a engine and hull!!! and you have the Island Escape Don't get me wrong most of the staff were friendly ( except customer services ) and the evening entertainment shows were quite good but it ends there The ship itself is completely run down and dirty, beds that collapse under you in the middle of the night, cabins that stink of god knows what but its worse than sewage, Stains on the carpets that look like road kill.....etc etc etc We actually spoke with the captain one day and asked him about the general state of the ship, He told us that there is only 10 Years life left in the boat and that the management were squeezing every penny out of her before it was scrapped and that no money would be spent on the customer area's in the time she had left, He was just as unhappy as the passengers but I think he was just serving his time until his retirement and I actually felt sorry for him in the end Everything you read on cruise critic about this ship is TRUE so please take my advice and don't make the same mistake we did Spend your money wisely Read Less
Sail Date May 2011
This was our first and last Thompson cruise. After travelling around Europe over 30 years and staying in everything from smart hotels to vine pickers huts it was spectacularly the most awful week we have ever spent abroad. The cabin was ... Read More
This was our first and last Thompson cruise. After travelling around Europe over 30 years and staying in everything from smart hotels to vine pickers huts it was spectacularly the most awful week we have ever spent abroad. The cabin was scruffy - mouldy shower, cracking tiles, loose wall lamps and black curtains rather than doors on the wardrobe. No room to move once the two (different height and hardness) singles were pushed together. Lovely stewardess but there was no way she could have made this better. We are good sleepers, and good sailors. But there was no chance of sleeping here. The ship banged and reverberated constantly with enough force to move you up in your bed till your head hit the shelf at the back. Asking to be moved was fruitless - I think the reception staff must get training to say 'What noise?' and look surprised - some other staff who also have to try to sleep in these conditions know exactly what we mean! After three nights we threatened to take our bedding and sleep in reception and at this point got a low deck cabin with constant engine noise for six hours and the only continuous sleep we managed in seven nights. According to Thompson we should have complained more while on board and they could have sent in a technical team to sort out the cabin while we were occupying it! Other annoyances included - booking a window seat on the plane and not getting one, the absence of some advertised activities - tiny pool - loud and often amateurish 'entertainment' - school dinner style seating in the Island restaurant (beware 'Sir' will shout at you if you accidentally go back to the wrong table!) - intrusive photographers and drinks sellers, exorbitant excursion prices (it costs less than a quarter of the price by local transport) - lost luggage which took over an hour to find in Palma - OK we were there early but we couldn't wait to get off this boat! Oh and forget the 'happy couples' pictures in the brochure. The only way to have a private peaceful meal for two is to pay £30 a night for the Oasis supplement - which we would have done, it was the best thing on the ship, except that sleep deprivation doesn't really incline you to eat well . In spite of three unexpected changes of port in a week the places we visited were great but again would have been better had we had the energy to fully explore them. The worst thing of all however has been the total lack of concern shown byThompson customer services during and since our return. I have written three letters and waited for replies - hence the lateness of this feedback. On board they told us that the ship was going for refit - as if that would help us sleep and since returning home all we have had is reference to small print and an attempt to convince us that what we experienced is normal ship noise. the weather has been cited too - but the noise and vibration were actually worse on the calmer nights. This holday was booked on the basis of a previous good holiday with a Thompson company in Austria. we were not expecting luxury for the price , just a good value standard. I have since decided that what you get depends more on the general standards of the country concerned rather than the tour company. Providing a service means at least meeting basic standards, the most basic of all being to supply appropriate sleeping accommodation - if it had been one or two nights of stormy weather we could have accepted that as normal - but not sleeping when the sea is calm is another matter. I would urge you to think again before you spend hard earned cash on this dated converted ferry- it is not a cruise ship and never will be . The best thing Thompson can do to show real repect for their customers is to get rid of it. Read Less
Sail Date January 2011
This was our first cruise - family with a 2 year old. We went to our local Thomsons to book a holiday to Turkey an were talked into this " amazing, unforgettable, I've been and booked again already" cruise. our first mistake ... Read More
This was our first cruise - family with a 2 year old. We went to our local Thomsons to book a holiday to Turkey an were talked into this " amazing, unforgettable, I've been and booked again already" cruise. our first mistake was to book it, and our second was to book it without reading any reviews. The flight with Thomson was great; cannot complain at all. Friendly staff, comfortable seats, no problems at all. Transfer was also OK. Middle of a thunderstorm and the coach leaked a bit but fine. We got to the port and it took almost 2 hours to get on the ship. The Kids club reps approached us and informed us that contrary to what we'd been told the kids club was only for 4 years and up. Good start. When we finally got to the front of the queue and were photographed - excessive photographing on this cruise- we went through to the glorified ferry, which another reviewer called it. I cannot agree more. I got on board and cried. This was when I was waiting for the lift. The joys of the room were still to come. The public areas were not too bad once you got away from the foyer area where we boarded, apart from the cafeteria style beachcombers buffet. We then got to our room. The word small doesn't seem to cover it. The word clean unfortunately didn't either.I must stress that I don't think it was the fault of the staff member, but that the room was just so old that I don't think it will ever come clean. The bathroom was beyond disgusting. Dirty grouting and shower head, and just generally very grubby. The room itself was faded and had dirty patches on the wall. I went to customer services and complained and was told there was nothing that could be done until the following day when we had left port and all the guests had boarded. The thought of washing me or more importantly my baby in that bathroom was almost too much. I starting describing how dirty it was and instead of being helpful, sympathetic or even polite, was advised to keep my voice down otherwise other guests would hear. I had now been awake since 4.30 am for the flight so temporarily backed down. We went to eat in the restaurant which I have to say was ok. Kids menu was average but the buffet food was varied and there was a different theme each night, which sounds tacky but actually made for some lovely food. The staff were amazing. the 1 positive on this ferry. The next day we were reallocated a room, which was slightly cleaner but at least the bathroom was bearable. The pool was miniscule - a plunge pool and looked dirty. The holiday passed by - the destinations were good, although personally I thought Naples port area was a bit of a hole and also rather frightening. We went to the nearby Ischia island instead. beautiful. One day I made the mistake of thinking I'd go to the gym to clear my head. When I approached the 6 machines that were stuck in the corner of an aisle I had to give up as, if you're over about 5'5" then you will hit your head on the ceiling if you go on some of the equipment, for example cross trainer. I cannot tell you how plesed I was to get off this ferry. The night time entertainment is awful, the shops are tacky and the ferry is unbelievably horrible. Butlins on Sea is about accurate, and might actually be generous and a slur on Butlins. It hasn't put me off cruising however, as I saw the decent ships that pulled up at the ports we sailed to. Oh and to top it off, if the travel agent tells you that they accept debit cards on board that's also not true. I had switch maestro and they only accept Visa Debit. I had to withdraw cash in the destinations, change it with the purser and then pay cash as I went. So much wasted money on exchange rates. Such a waste of a week of my life that I will never get back. In summary, if you hadn;t guessed-noy recommended. Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
This cruise was a last minute surprise from my fiancee and as we had sailed with Thomson twice before we thought we knew what to expect.(Nothing fancy but good clean value for money) How wrong we were!!! The embarkation was pretty simple ... Read More
This cruise was a last minute surprise from my fiancee and as we had sailed with Thomson twice before we thought we knew what to expect.(Nothing fancy but good clean value for money) How wrong we were!!! The embarkation was pretty simple but as we were delayed 2 hours there was no embarkation photograph and no one to show us to our cabin. When we found the corridor our cabin was on there was a very musty smell and a wet floor sign outside our cabin door with a big dirty wet patch on the carpet. We had asked for a cabin with a double bed if possible. We ended up with 2 single beds pushed together with a hard steel ridge down the middle with only 2 single sized covers and sheets to try and cover ourselves with. The cabin and toilet were small as we expected, but we were shocked at how worn everything was. There were dents and marks on all the walls, the varnish was worn off the chests of drawers, the skirting boards round the room were all chipped and broken and the wardrobe had curtains for doors. If I didn't know the boat was built in the 80s I would have said the bathroom had come from the 70s. The toilet seat was all discoloured, the fittings in the shower and on the sink were cracked and oxidised and the grout on the tiles ranged in colour from black to dirty grey.The towels that we got were changed every day but they were never what you could call white and sometimes they had stains on them. I booked the celebration package as a thank you for my fiancee but there was only the Champagne and strawberries in the room when we arrived, no flowers or cake or any information about the breakfast and photographs that were included in the package. A nice bouquet of flowers arrived at 8:30 the next morning spoiling our long lie in bed.I went to reception to find out about the rest of the package and was told they didn't know about it, strange considering we already had the champagne. I eventually got the voucher for the photograph(no frame included that would coast extra),and asked when I wanted the continental (cold) breakfast and the cake.On Royal Caribbean I was £30 more but we got slippers,dressing gowns to keep, 2 a la carte breakfasts, canapes at night on top of what we got on the Escape. After three days I went back to reception to ask why the wet floor sign was still outside our room and what was happening with the wet carpet as I was concerned that the smell was getting worse and as the stain was on the opposite wall that the toilet was fitted on where the water was coming from. I was told they would note it and get back to me. I also told them I still hadn't received my cake.On the last day of the cruise I went back about the sign and wet patch I was offered £50 credit and told it was a leaking water pipe and that nothing could be done about it when the cabin was occupied and they couldn't move us to a different cabin. But by that afternoon the sign was gone the floor had been dried a bit and there was a nice smell of air freshener. I may be cynical but that same day some suit and tie people from Thomson came aboard in Mahon. The food on the Island escape can best be described as average. The Beachcomber restaurant was like a cattle market at meal times and you didn't get as much choice as you do on the Thomson Destiny or Spirit but it was ok for a quick snack. The Island Restaurant was a bit nicer and the waiters were very friendly and helpful. It is still self service and there can be a bit of confusion trying to get to the food.The wine choice was not too bad and not too expensive for some but at £3 a pint the beer was more than I pay in my local. I would say the entertainment was very good Jayne Curry, Elvis and Bobby Knutt were excellent. Elvis was the best I have seen.The ships own entertainment staff were not the best but they were entertaining. The staff were very friendly and did there job as well as they could considering the state of the ship. Why Thomson would have anything to do with this boat I do not know it should have been made into razor blades (scrapped) long ago. Read Less
Sail Date August 2010
Island Escape Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.2
Dining 3.0 3.8
Entertainment 3.0 4.0
Public Rooms 3.0 3.9
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.4
Family 3.0 3.4
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.7
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 4.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.7
Rates 4.0 3.5

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