Make no mistake, I had a great time with my 2nd sailing on MSC and the Divina, but that is because I am not a miserable person, but I met PLENTY of miserable passengers and they were all my countrymen, sigh. AMy favorite part was my triple ... Read More
Make no mistake, I had a great time with my 2nd sailing on MSC and the Divina, but that is because I am not a miserable person, but I met PLENTY of miserable passengers and they were all my countrymen, sigh. AMy favorite part was my triple balcony (keep the booking prices exactly the same!), the drinks and the colorful shows (Treasure Island, Witches In Paris and Michael Jackson).
Honest to goodness, MSC is a great ship. With caveats. This was my 2nd time sailing with MSC, on the Divina and it was nice to be able to reflect between my voyage 2yrs ago for NYE and this past cruise.
People live to overshare with me and this very much happened on the cruise cruise. No company should want to hear someone say "MSC is great, if you lower your xpectations."
I come from a family of seasoned cruisers. The staff were great, to me, but I am a horse of different colors and I can adapt.
You have to have dog hearing to hear the announcement for passenger embarkation. I was standing next to the escalator and even the attendant didn't hear it, just the crowd of passengers. Get to the embarkation port EARLY, like 10:30 or 11 and line up at the right door. Not the door as soon as he cares pulls up towards the middle of the ship where all of the disembarking passengers are, walk forward to head of ship and line up there. Put your stuff at the door and sit down. There is a stampeed closer to the time to board when they check your passports. You get a low number, get on and relax.
For US Americans, all you have to do is dangle some keys in our face and we'll be satisfied like a toddler. If we like you, there's no bad word we'll say about you, but give us a reason to NOT like you and that's all we'll remember. I get this kind of crazy and I adapt. I am on a European ship, which is working to adapt its vision with its passengers having a good time.....but having us sail 12/2 from Miami to the Caribbean and there being NO Christmas decorations on the ship (we put up decorations the day after Thanksgiving and they're up to New Years) was a real downer, for example. I was able to show passengers what it LOOKED like in '15 when I sailed for NYE and it made other passengers bad situations worse. Decorations work. It makes people feel better, even when they feel worse. Enough of us asked the crew who said they had no idea, either, when it was going up. Reviews of a bare ship could go up, if the passengers feel the ship put in some decorating effort.
Service charges. We should be able to go to reception and have them removed from our cabin without needing a permission slip from our room steward and creating a sense of awkwardness for everyone. One passenger in the cigar lounge told me he wouldn't be tipping ANYONE because he had to remove the charge via this fashion AND MSC will not provide a breakdown of where the service charge goes just like other cruise lines do. $5pp per day is standard for room steward, I found online, if its a $12.95 service charge, dining room is $6. He also said it in a (he felt) mockery of a French accent, or as he called it, "snooty European." It's a simple task, gives people ease and staff get their tips. A US liaison would have been able to help you avoid this.
Why are there no maps in the middle of the elevator areas?? Having them on the sides is nice if you're there, but having them IN the elevator or in the middle of the elevator area,so you can peak out if you're lost is great....if you had it.
Dining. Mashed potatoes come with gravy, but the gravy was NOwhere near it. My aunt and I discovered it on day 2 near the meat. People complained about the food, not because it was bad, but because it was organized....differently.
Lounge chairs? You know, passengers like to lay on them outside of the pool area. I had a HUGE balcony in room, (love the triple size!)...but there was no lounge chair like up in Sofia Loren's suite. Deck 7 should also have them as well. Or chairs out like on RCCL. We want to be able lay out just on the deck. And then leave them there, like Holland America does. The deck is just bare....which is off putting.
Smoking. We get it. You can't smoke on earth anymore, but having smoking on one side of Deck 14 outside at the pool, in the corner, like on RCCL, means the world for US citizens. Be unique with the great cigar room, but you may want to be able to see your kids in the pool and smoke, not just going up to 15. To some, the vagueness of the private adult pool on 14 is ok, to US citizens, adult only should mean adults only. I didn't mind, but a number of passengers told me this irked them.
MSC Divina is a BEAUTIFUL ship, but missing the mark with the US market as they are still working to break into our market. 7yrs in our market, people should not still say "what is MSC?" They definitely need to do more marketing.
Why is the music so outdated in the public areas where we drink outside of the pool? We had a great time listening to the music....coming from RCCL's Rhapsody ship when we were docked in one of the ports. Everyone doesn't want to go to the Disco or Black and White Lounge to hear music from the Top 20. Again, US American's need to learn to adapt to other cultures, but it would be nice if MSC tried a bit harder in our market. Over in Europe, we'll get what we get, but in this hemisphere, we feel left out when we see other party ships and we feel like we are at a collegiate cocktail hour....for a week.
The ship is so clean. US citizens like to party, but compared to other ships, you are SO clean. I loved it! No trash cans, we get it, but I applaud how clean and pretty MSC is. I love your decor, even without the late Christmas directions. Those stairs are amazing! They are swarovski crystal!
The staff who do activities like arts and crafts NEED an assistant. One person is so not enough. Cintia did great, because we helped her. She just did not have enough arms to be in two places at once with multiple tables. She was super happy for me to show passengers how to do 3D snowflakes when we realized we could NOT do her boxes. She and I got along great. She said I should apply for MSC.
I LOVE HOW PRETTY THE SHIP IS, but definitely could be room for improvement.
Omg, wow, I have never sailed on a ship that was more disorganized with the final disembarkation than I was this with MSC. With US citizens, unfortunately, it only takes one person standing to make a line, for everyone else to line up behind them. And that is where the madness started. There was ONE line going down the middle of the ship and through the lounges on 7 and then we looked to our right and saw another line out on the deck! I am a mover and a shaker, so I told my aunt, lets go. But not before the major wave of resentment spread across the land of us not knowing which was the real line.
MSC let us line up for port disembarkation in Jamaica, only to tell EVERYONE in the stairs area that they needed to make one line around reception after we had been there 10m. Having a posted staff member there preventing us from lining up in the first place would have helped US citizens and everyone feel better about your planning skills.
Lines, we all have to wait in them, but knowing which is the RIGHT line goes a long way with getting return passengers.
It was December and I have sailed with MSC during the last week of December and I KNOW how much prettier your ship can be for the month and it can definitely change the atmosphere of how passengers feel about their sailing when you decorate what our culture calls on time, which is December 1st.
Back to US citizens being easily pleased, IF you try. We need karaoke every night and 3 or 5 rounds of daily trivia, a mid-day Marriage/Couples game in the theater or pool area. Moods and reviews can be altered if we are made to be in a happy place.
A unique happy place from MSC? Your AMAZING drink voucher option. Not everyone wants or needs unlimited for $600 and all passengers in the room needing to get it. I will now purchase it on my next MSC cruise, since my family WANTS to do a Mediterranean one, as I'm a big fan of the Count of Monte Cristo movie. Hello, Malta!
t's alarming that MSC thinks the previous cruise passengers winning ONLY $10k on the last cruise is a good thing. There are over 4k passengers, 10k is weak. A number of US passengers AND European ones told me they were quite alarmed with their lack of winnings in the casino, myself included. We did hear that one lady won $6k on our trip. Must be nice. Read Less