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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Just looked very nice from photos of which the decor was but the service was not at all great. The entertainment was really bad the shows were the same every night but with different costumes. Staff not at all friendly some actually rude. ... Read More
Just looked very nice from photos of which the decor was but the service was not at all great. The entertainment was really bad the shows were the same every night but with different costumes. Staff not at all friendly some actually rude. Staff in restaurant not at all friendly enough to hold a conversation or even get to know your name. Thought the food in restaurant was very simple no coffee or tea offered after dinner. Shuttle service from ship was well over priced in fact other shipping lines offer free shuttle services. The only thing going for MSc is you offer drinks packages of which help a great deal. The buffet on the 14th floor had the same food every single day not enough verity for our needs so if you did not like the menu for the day in the dinning rooms the buffet was even worse. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
Free upgrade to balcony is why booked ,The embarkation took 2 hours of Queuing ,which seemed to be the way the rest of the cruise went,que for shore excursions to get on and off boat, the excursions were late and ... Read More
Free upgrade to balcony is why booked ,The embarkation took 2 hours of Queuing ,which seemed to be the way the rest of the cruise went,que for shore excursions to get on and off boat, the excursions were late and disorganized.Entertainment was in 5 different languages as were the trips,75 percent of ship were German and it was catered more for them all bars singing in German .The food is not catered for the British and what was like carvery meat tough and inedible roast potatoes oily and undercover Yorkshire puddings were rock hard . Hot water in urns not hot so Luke warm tea.Food dried up and not hot just warm .Food in restaurant menu very limited and not to British taste mostly meat not enough veg .Not enough lifts and we were constantly squashed .Cabin had no sofa so no where to sit only on bed which was rock hard and uncomfortable ,holes in curtain and sheets carpet had catches in .No extras had to pay for everything . Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
I chose because of the low cost. unfortunately I got what I paid for. After more than 10 cruises with other cruise I can't tell how disappointed I was. The issue started before I left home. Calling MSC you have 2 choices 2 for new ... Read More
I chose because of the low cost. unfortunately I got what I paid for. After more than 10 cruises with other cruise I can't tell how disappointed I was. The issue started before I left home. Calling MSC you have 2 choices 2 for new booking or 3 for existing booking. If you choose 2 someone answer within 30 seconds, but if you choose 3 then no one ever answers. I tried several times no luck. Then when arrived at the ship we had to carry our own luggage to our cabin. This has never happened to me before. But this was only the beginning . At every port we had disembark and re board via a very steep ramp. I use a cane and this was very dangerous . At one port we were tendered in the rain but they only used 3 life boats for 4000 people. Coming back we had to wait 1and 30 minutes in the rain, plus when we got to the ship we had to climb a steap stair case on the outside of the ship. The food in the buffet was barely edible and the dining was not much better never more than 3 choices. That started with having to argue for water at our table. We were 6 at our table but never had more than 3 pads of butter. Coffee and tea came very late (I suspect they were hoping we would loose interest and leave . Other than the cabin steward no one was approachable. All the staff did was try to sell us extras. As to special restaurants there were none. I would happily paid for a better meal but that option didn't exist. They did sell a steak in the dining for €23. we took it hoping it would be acceptable and it was. The only good meal in the entire 2 weeks. Apparently sail with MSC a second time. I can't imagine why. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Although this was a beautiful ship the level of customer care was well below any other cruise we have been on, very few of the crew spoke and barged past as if you weren't there.When we were waiting to embark we waited fot 1 1/2 hrs ... Read More
Although this was a beautiful ship the level of customer care was well below any other cruise we have been on, very few of the crew spoke and barged past as if you weren't there.When we were waiting to embark we waited fot 1 1/2 hrs in the queue because there was only 1 desk open when we finally got on board we were faced with another queue to register a credit card why could it not have been done all at once as on other cruises. It costs nothing to be polite perhaps the people who train them need training also. The food in the buffet was very dryed out and tasteless because to much was put out before anyone could eat it. I had a hot chocolate snatched from my hand by the person in charge of the drinks station and told it wasn't aloud as it wasn't breakfast time. The casino was always very smokey and that carried up to the floor above not nice for non smokers.the wording in the brochure appeared to promise 2 days in Amsterdam our trip arrived there about 5 pm and we were picked back up at 7.45 the ship left the Dock at 6am definitely not 2 days. Every thing on board was at a charge the 3d cinema was a simulator 7 euros each for about 8 minutes all films on the TV were 7 euros each and the only TV programme in English was BBC World news and no music channel.The shows were very much of the same just using different costumes and the resident artists. Any information we were given at reception was usually wrong such as instruction on disembarking which deck and timings. Disembarking was made very difficult due to the steep angle of the gangplank. All in all we were very disappointed and we will not be cruising with them again. Non of the English people we spoke to on the cruise would travel with them again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This was my first cruise on MSC and I should have paid better attention to the reviews. There were so many things wrong, the list is long: 1. Food. I was on the ship for 15 days and the same cold breakfast buffet was offered everyday. ... Read More
This was my first cruise on MSC and I should have paid better attention to the reviews. There were so many things wrong, the list is long: 1. Food. I was on the ship for 15 days and the same cold breakfast buffet was offered everyday. There is no service in the buffet unless you pay for items from the buffet bar. 2. Be prepared to add the cost of water, tea or coffee in the main dining rooms. They will not bring you a glass of water, but offer a bottle of water for Euro 3,44. That is per meal. Also don't bother to go to the dining room to get away from breakfast or lunch in the buffet. The same buffet is is set up both places. You can order from the menu, as I did one morning but they just put buffet food on the plate. 3. You have an assigned dining time and a seat and DON'T ever move to another table with empty seats or they rush over to make you feel like a criminal. It happened to me. I sat at a table for 8 the first night and no one else came. I am a solo traveler, but that is no excuse. Three nights later, I was seated again at my proper seat and table. No one came, I put the napkin on the table and walked over to a table speaking English-table for 6 with only 2 diners. Immediately the waiter approached, arms flailing stating "You can't change tables!" My response was "I just did. I refuse to eat another meal by myself.". "You have to check with the boss and he has to OK the move." Have they never heard of "my time dining" or "pick your own dining time" as many other lines have? 4. Four ports we visited, we were notified the night before that we would be docked outside of town, but they would offer a "shuttle" to get us into town. Of course, there was a price, averaging euros 10 per person. When you are told you are 30 min. away from the town via bus and don't have a clue where you are docked, what other option do you have? My theory is the cruise line has to pay to dock the ship and areas out of the center of town are cheaper, so it is another way to make money. This wasn't busy tour season, and when we got to towns, there were places for more ships and none of our rides took near as long as they stated they would take. 5. I got off 1 day early, and on that day we were told we were 30 min. away from city center. I have my luggage so what else do I do but pay for the shuttle? When I went to the excursion desk to sign up, I was told I could not use the shuttle because I was disembarking. "What, you are just going to drop me God knows where and I have to find my way?" After a phone call, he permitted me to buy a ticket. 6.On disembarkment day, I was not the only one leaving. We were told to have luggage out in the hall before 8am but would not be able to leave until 4pm or after and were instructed to meet in one of the bars and someone would come and give instructions. Our luggage could be picked up in the terminal. I, along with others, obeyed and sat there, Well, no one came. We decided to get off on our own and find our luggage, and as were were exiting, we met people coming back onto the ship and said there is no luggage in the terminal. They had to come back, then get off another deck and look for their luggage on the dock. Luggage was found, but what a mess! 7. If you enjoy the shows, don't go on this ship. They were almost non-existent. The ones they did have were nice, only ever lasted less then 1/2 hour. 8.I did not use all my pre-deposited money I added to my ship account before sailing, so I ask customer service desk how to get it back. The response was, "Come back on disembarkment day and we give you euros." I returned as told, talked to the same girl and she said, "We don't give you cash back". Wait a minute, "You were the one that told me how this works and only yesterday. I came for my money." She went to the back room and when she returned, she said, " I will give you the money in euros." 9. I attended a CruiseCritic reception, and the officers in white uniforms were to come around and talk to the passengers. I sat there 50 minutes, making direct eye contact with the men and NO ONE approached me. The cruise director, Darren was there and I asked to speak to him. I told him about the "criminal" way I was treated in the dining room and also had some real issues with a laundry package I had pre-purchased. He said he would check into the laundry issue and get back to me the next day. I'm still waiting. Four days later, I went to the service desk, and told them I had not heard from him. They called his office and said the office would call me and set up an appointment. I expressed my disappointment in Darren and said he must not be a man of his word. I am still waiting for that call also! There were a few good things that were appreciated.: 1.The cabin was neat and tidy, and clean daily. 2. I enjoyed the 9 ports we visited and the excursions I did go on were orderly and well run. 3. The ship was beautiful and always clean. The cruise director stated at the CruiseCritic meeting that MSC was putting 14 new ships in the water in the next 12 months. If they are are going to be a big player in the American cruise industry, they will need to make some changes and have some organizational skills with much better communication between staff and toward passengers. It seems there is only chaos and no one knows how or why things are to work or run. I have been on Avalon, Viking, Holland, Princess, Celebrity, and NCL over the years and they were all better than this. I will not be booking another cruise with MSC. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
Thankfully near the End of this cruise. If you only speak English this is not the cruise line for you. Flights sat me and my partner in different rows. On Board food has been the most bland we have had on any cruise. Most of the time cold. ... Read More
Thankfully near the End of this cruise. If you only speak English this is not the cruise line for you. Flights sat me and my partner in different rows. On Board food has been the most bland we have had on any cruise. Most of the time cold. I have being with 5 different cruise lines. Sports bar no English sports. Tv in cabin no English channel. Done a tour ticked the English box whole tour in French. Booked a deluxe drinks package they keep running out of the drinks we ask for. We have booked October cruise to Durban thinking of cancelling it after talking to a staff member as said it maybe worst then this one because it has a lot of sea days so can not get off for decent FOOD. HAVE met people on this cruise who after the first 2 days have ate all their meals off the ship. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Transfer from Gatwick was great as was embarkation we had our luggage taken and next time we saw it was in our cabin, the only downside was getting the special assist people off the plane. They put all the British people together in the ... Read More
Transfer from Gatwick was great as was embarkation we had our luggage taken and next time we saw it was in our cabin, the only downside was getting the special assist people off the plane. They put all the British people together in the dining room on specific tables and dining times were 6.30 or 9.00 which was too early or too late for us and when they picked people up 4 times from either Martinique or Guadeloupe because they had a muster we had to be there at 6.15 or 9.15. On these days when people were joining or leaving the ship it was a bit chaotic with them going everywhere trailing their luggage. The food in the dining room was very mediocre and the breakfast and lunch in the buffet was manic trying to get a seat and the food very disappointing I would say worst buffet I have ever seen. The entertainment was also disappointing geared up for the French and Italian clientele all announcements were made in other languages with English last. There was a guy singing in one of the lounges who was brilliant. The pool area was a bit disappointing as we could only use one side as there was smoking areas just behind the sun beds and there was even one lady using a vaping machine in the non smoking area and no one asked her to stop even though staff were serving her drinks. The flight back was not a good experience we had to wait one and half hours as two people and their luggage were taken off the plane. There was a medical emergency during the night and when we arrived at Gatwick we had to wait on plane until paramedics got on. There were people coughing all night. Just seen on news same flight arrived at Gatwick yesterday morning and because of sickness people had to be quarantined. Unfortunately I did not fare very well as the day we got back I had trouble breathing and ended up in hospital with clot on my lung and pneumonia still feeling the effects now. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
From the first there were high hopes that this would be the ideal cruise. We carefully selected our cabin, paid for an upgrade from the Bella Class and were told we would have drink tickets available. Our luggage was tagged for our ... Read More
From the first there were high hopes that this would be the ideal cruise. We carefully selected our cabin, paid for an upgrade from the Bella Class and were told we would have drink tickets available. Our luggage was tagged for our room and we were at the ship early. Happy to be allowed boarding somewhat earlier than the listed time our passports were scanned and the luggage scanned and sent to our room. We went through the next phase of having our photo taken for the ID (again matching our passports and clearly assigned our cabin.) When we reached the registration area, amidst the chaos of what felt to be pushy sales for drinks packages and upgrades we already paid for we were soon told "we have no record of you." We pointed out the impossibility of this - having our luggage already aboard and heading to our selected room. This had to be mentioned twice to be clear: we had a room, and clearly the computers would have indicated a problem during the early phases of ship access. Fix It Note: Your computer systems should be integrated. This is a clear failure to enter consistent data or a failure in the database. The second case is quite rare. Imagine how we felt to be offered an "upgrade" to a different room for our troubles. That would be so helpful. Oddly the "upgrade" did not seem to consider the following items: A) Our carefully chosen room that was not directly under dance or performance deck. Our "upgrade" had us under an activity deck so that we would hear people running along the deck, amplified it sounded "like a heard of wildebeest." B) We checked our access cards - which were in the new suite - and as surprising as this was since we were "not in the system" we also found that our access status was "Bella" class. One might be shocked that this "sudden" upgrade seems to have been a shift of our cabin denying the upgrade we paid for. Obviously our expectations of having the 12 drink tickets evaporated. I am left to ponder if the offered tickets were placed in the original cabin. C) Assured our luggage was to be forwarded, and feeling the need for my medication (asthma inhalers) I went in search of our luggage after a few hours. There was no effort to reroute our luggage to the new location. If I were to guess why - "we weren't in the system" so they didn't know where to look for it. It didn't make it easier for me to manhandle our luggage to the elevator when I found it only to find two elevators on service and two elevators consistently packed with people. This effort made me unhappy. That failure was not welcome - but at least I could take my medication. The dinner service was scheduled for 9:30 in the evening. It seemed light fare and we were hungry, and I was disappointed to have the sales pitch for drink services and alternate food offerings during dinner. Due to a change in our plans, since I was already ill with a cold, we requested an earlier dinner seating the next evening. Summary: at the end of Day 1 things felt like this was a shakedown cruise and people didn't really know how things were scheduled. It may be possible that the drink tickets were not delivered by the agency we booked with but the "not in the system" and room upgrade that wasn't an upgrade were not hopeful. My thoughts - "It can only get better." For the cruise: The cabin and the ship were clean, though I felt perhaps the ships stabilizers could be better. Aside from the pitter-patter of small feet in combat boots overhead some of the ceiling tiles creaked and any loose hangers in the closet would rattle. The buffet was not up to my expectations. Perhaps I expect too much but the offerings of pizza and burgers were not to my taste or to my body's acceptance. This persisted with other offerings I sampled over the cruise. I like food, and having to resort to salads (the salad bar was good) for my lunch left my wife bemused. Over the course of the week we also sampled the breakfast buffet. The comments as follows: Bell Pepper Omlette - "where is the Bell Pepper?" This was the same for the cheese omlette to the point that I went to another region of the buffet to find cheese to put on my cheese omlette. The "custom omlette" station had too long a line to sample the custom made omlettes but my experience with the others was not leaving me inspired. Some of the fresh plates from the rack were not clean. I know that is a difficult element to master when people grab ten plates at a time. We did get an earlier seating for dinner by the next day. (Yay!) We also had excellent company at the table and Jayland was eager to please. We learned then that we could order more than one appetiser, entree and dessert. That information would have been useful the first night and I don't understand why we were not told. The portions were still a small so we took to multiple orders. There were some disappointments and the meals were hit and miss. This included a shrimp bisque a couple of days in where my wife found one shrimp that would fit on my baby finger-nail. While I liked the onion soup the cheese on some form of plaster-hardened bread was hard to cut through. The other couple at our table agreed. We were again offered to buy steak and lobster. It felt like this was being used to leverage sales of the T-Bone steak and lobster. We were offered to purchase a wine for the New Years Eve dinner. Oddly, even though this was the first time we were offered we were told all but two sparkling wines were sold out. We noticed those wines were readily available at the bar on other evenings. This is at odds with logic - why were we not offered the new years selections earlier, and how can you be sold out of something you still had a supply of? Inquiring minds want to know. The room service was good, the shower clean, the water hot, with enough storage for our goods. In St. Kitts the room program did mention in the fine print that photo ID would be needed. After a number of stops where it was not needed this change caught me by surprise since I was not reading the fine print in detail. While there may have been an announcement it did not come across the speaker in our cabin and by the time I opened the door to hear what was being said in the hallway the message was in German. My German is way too rusty. We got off without photo-ID and had trouble getting back on. What would have been good? Having a SIGN by the exits saying "for this port you need photo-ID to get back" and maybe a person to check before they get off the ship. What else left me disappointed? Oh, one or two more things: I went to Medical - and staff were trying to stop me from going there. All I wanted was a blood pressure check (give me the cuff/stethyscope and I would do it myself) and the nurse practitioner didn't inspire confidence in that she didn't know how to find "blood pressure" in the menus and had to be shown. My wife went to the spa for a full package (massage, manicure, pedicure, facial) and she came back with a wound on her nose. The facial should not take off the face. "You can cover that up with makeup" doesn't cut it - the charge was for a first class service, there is no room for error on that. Yes, it healed by the end of the trip but it never should have happened or the charge should have been withdrawn. I was not impressed by the entertainment, either. Perhaps we were picky but we had been on another cruiseline and found there that the instruments were played on key, the singers had a greater dynamic range for vocals in pitch and rhythm and the dancers could dance in sync. I feel the decor of the Safari Lounge needs a revamp on top of that. Smoke - open casino smoke would bleed into other areas of the ship, making it hard to move to the other end of the ship without changing floors. The open smoking on the upper deck did on occasion waft to our balcony, and I did see someone toss a cigarette butt overboard - regardless of the rules it was disconcerting to witness. The Final Costs, on the last day I was surprised by the automatic tipping built in (10e/day/person) and thought this was included in the package price. Maybe I was wrong, but I felt I needed a drink. Waiting fifteen minutes to not have anyone take an order we changed bars. At the next bar I ordered a 6e gin and tonic from a menu and was presented with wonderful gin and tonic with a bill for a 7.50e ... and while this was corrected I could only ponder through the trip how many times this had been done to me, recalling that we were supposed to have drink tickets. Have I missed any details? Probably a few. Little things, like the MSC special access ramp that I couldn't use one morning at 9am scooting back to the ship with some cough medicine for my wife. There was nobody on the ramp coming off or going on, but it was for the yacht club members... so I got to wander the distance to the next ramp in the morning shower that happened overhead. A crisis it was not, but the ramp was idle. All in all, no single thing is worth crying about. Even all the things summed up are not a crying shame. However, it all adds up to an experience that does not match the effort to deliver a prime service. The restaurant food should be five star, room assignments should not be lost, the buffet should have a higher quality of food, the entertainment needs a boost, the Safari Lounge needs a makeover and the Nurse Practitioner needs better human relations training as well as practice record keeping on the computer Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
Staff rudeness and experience: -Our party of 6 were split to a table of 4 and share a table of 6 with another party of 4. The other party of 4 agreed to switch table so they can have a private table and we 6 can dine together. After ... Read More
Staff rudeness and experience: -Our party of 6 were split to a table of 4 and share a table of 6 with another party of 4. The other party of 4 agreed to switch table so they can have a private table and we 6 can dine together. After making arrangement with the Dining Room host who said it is fine and he will send info to our cabin. The next evening we were asked by 3 different staff, including the dining room host to see our cabin ID and rudely said there was problem with our sitting. - Out waiter NEVER introduce himself nor his assistant. We told him that 1 member of our party is allergic to mushrooms so please warn us when there is any mushroom in the foods. He never ask or forewarn us of any dish that could have mushroom. - For Dessert we ask for the flavors of the ice cream he said he need 15 mins to find out what choice of flavors they are serving. Latter the Vanilla ice cream came almost completely melt. -Another nite a waiter in the Inca buffet tipped a glass of red wine all over me and my sister who wear white pants, light color blouse and white jacket. He was stunned and did not know what to dọ We told him it was just an accident but he should get his manager to a) get laundry done for us and b) refill our glasses. There were a few officers in the vicinity and NONE seems to care. After a more than 15 mins, I went to see the manager of the bar and he asked me to report to buffet officer or manager. 30 mins later the waiter returned with his manager who DID NOT apologize and only offer to take care of the laundry for my sister. We have to asked for a new glass of wine to replace the almost empty spilled glass. - All 6 of us have beverage package, 2 other couples also have wine/beer/coffee package as well as Soda package. The coupons were NOT delivered to 1 couple for 3 days. When asked Guest Services kept saying they will be delivered to their room. For the first 2 dinner the waiter kept saying he has to charge them even after they show receipts that they paid for the 2 packages. BTW, they issue COUPONS for the beverage package instead of electronically recording them on the cabin ID. - For the mineral bottle water package the main dining room staff kept telling us that we can go to the buffer bar to get it BUT the latter kept refusing to provide the bottle and send us back to the main dining room waiters. - On the first nite, one lady order Sex on the Beach drink. She did not get it until almost at the end of dinner, he showed up with the drink and said he thought she was kidding. We later found out that he just got this job 3 weeks earlier!!!! Embarkation/Disembarkation: - At Genoa port we have to stand in line for 1 hour to be able to get out of the ship walkway. We later leaned that they let Genoa disembarking guests in the same line as visiting port guests. - The day before our cruise ends, we attended the Disembarkation orientation and was told that if we pay by credit card, just review the 2-copy statements and if there is no dispute, just sign 1 copy and leave it in the cabin before 10AM of the disembarkation day. at 1:15 PM as we departing the ship we were told that we owed them money and have to go back to deck 5 to see the Guest Services to pay. Since we have arrangement for a van pickup at 2:00 PM and seeing a LONG LINE at the Guest Services we had to pay almost 300 Euro in currency at the Disembarkation table and got NO RECEIPT that we paid. Foods: - We were shocked to learn that they do NOT serve coffee in the main dining room after dinner. The waiter told us to go to the buffet upstairs to get our coffee. - Most dishes served in the main dinning room are similar to what being served in the buffet. Needless to say, after 2 dinners we STOPPED returning to the dining room and ate our dinners in the buffet. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We made the Santos / Kiel crossing, and Kiel / Saint Petersburg / Kiel crossing for 28 days on the Costa Preziosa. I have reported problems with cockroaches, hair in the food, the smell of sewage in the pool that was in the stern of the ... Read More
We made the Santos / Kiel crossing, and Kiel / Saint Petersburg / Kiel crossing for 28 days on the Costa Preziosa. I have reported problems with cockroaches, hair in the food, the smell of sewage in the pool that was in the stern of the ship, problems and stress in the excursions, where people stayed inside the bus more than 4 hours without being able to go to the bathroom, staff of the stressed animation and shouting at the passengers at the landing in Kiel, dirt on the buffet, poorly laundered cutlery, dirty cloth napkins and counter tops of dirty food and dirty tables, and when cleaned they were poorly cleaned as well as refreshments at night like sticky pasta of the buffet that of so reheated did not detach from the spatula, besides the terrible service staff at the reception where I got in line several times to solve problem with improper collection, with service fees that were already included in the "experience" voucher, just as we tried to solve the problem of my wife's loyalty card that generated two loyalty numbers on these two cruises, we tried to solve with the Tour Marina who was stupid, arrogant and nothing solved. And if all that was not enough, on the date of landing, my new polycarbonate case was broken, where she took part of it and one of the wheels, as well as several passengers with the same problem, where a lady from Germany broke the suitcase in the middle, and a group of Brazilian ladies who broke the 4 wheels. We waited for hours for the ship's officer to come down and say that nothing could be done at that moment. I have only to regret the terrible experience. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
Chose the cruise on the recommendation of a travel agent (who I usually trust). Wanted to see the fjiords. The fjiords were a delight. However, once I entered the ship there is an onslought of people trying to sell you photos and all ... Read More
Chose the cruise on the recommendation of a travel agent (who I usually trust). Wanted to see the fjiords. The fjiords were a delight. However, once I entered the ship there is an onslought of people trying to sell you photos and all sorts of rubbish. This is uncalled for given that the cruise. We is paid for upfront. In addition, its a very tacky operation and you can hardly move with people trying to sell you stuff. The entertainment was absolutely awful. There is no de-caffinated coffee in the buffet and the tea is undrinkable (luke warm water). My biggest problem was that I paid 26 euros for whatsapp coverage as I needed to stay in contact because of a bereavement). It never worked and the reception staff were like Teflon - take no head. I asked could make a free landline call and they allowed me to in front of a row of noisy people - and when I asked to transfer the line to my cabin they said they would have to charge. In addition, we went to the talk on disembarkation - this was very misleading. We were told that we didn't have to go to reception if we were happy with our bills (which we were). In fact we were only given our bills at 2 a.m of the morning we were leaving. Then we were sent back from leaving the ship to reception (and our flight back was within a short while). They also take 70 euros of a service charge off your credit card. This is compulsory and is misleading when they are advertising the cruise. I could go on and on - but overall I don't know why people go there for break. Its the most frustrating and stress inducing experience that anyone could have. There is a lot of time wasted at sea too - just to keep you on the ship (spending). Its was a 7 night cruise - but it could have been done in 5 as they went from Geiranger down to Bergen and then back up to Flam. We could have done without Kiel too - there is nothing there. They probably won't pay the fees for going into Hamburg proper. We didn't go on any excursions organised by the ship - we did them ourselves at half the price and with more freedom. Its like a floating prison - stealing your money. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
Really looking forward to this cruise ,but sadly a huge disappointment.Cabin was good but everything else fell well short of what we were expecting .Food was a disaster.Our table service restaurant food was awful .Tiny portions of awful ... Read More
Really looking forward to this cruise ,but sadly a huge disappointment.Cabin was good but everything else fell well short of what we were expecting .Food was a disaster.Our table service restaurant food was awful .Tiny portions of awful food , tried the Italia restaurant paid extra for this just as bad.Buffet was a nightmare hundreds of people fighting for food couldn’t even find two seats together.Entertainment was poor .Excursions were so short hardly able to see anything in the cities we visited.Lack of information on what we should see or do on Our excursions. Docked in Gibraltar too late in day to be able to see The Rock which is the main attraction there.Enough time in Barcelona to walk up and down Las Ramblas.Not exactly what we were expecting.A lack of information about where we cruising each day.Followed the Spanish coastline would have been nice to have had some information about what we were looking out at from our balcony.Will NOT be cruising with MSC again Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
We've done about 20 cruises with 8 different cruise lines and have often been moored next to MSC ships and thought how lovely they looked so we thought we would try them. We picked the Preziosa sailing from Southampton on October 4th ... Read More
We've done about 20 cruises with 8 different cruise lines and have often been moored next to MSC ships and thought how lovely they looked so we thought we would try them. We picked the Preziosa sailing from Southampton on October 4th with scheduled stops Zeebrugge, Amstersam (overnight), Hamburg, Le Havre, Southampton. Total 7 days. Reading previous good reviews you can only imagine that these people have never cruised with other cruise lines so have nothing to compare them with! Brief Outline :_ Ship - lovely, Cabin - good, Food - poor to mediocre, Service - mediocre to atrocious, Organisation - abysmal. In More Detail :- Our cabin steward was good, our table serving staff was friendly and acceptable but all the rest (with perhaps a couple of minor exceptions) had awful attitudes.They were downright unfriendly and long waits to be served in the bars were common either by wait staff or at the bars. For example in the coffee bar we heard one waitress reply to a customer telling her that her cappuccino was almost cold by telling her that it should be served that way! On the few times you saw an officer about the ship they never even looked at you, never mind a smile or greeting.We never saw or heard from the Captain except once near the end of our cruise on stage to say goodbye. The Cruise Director was awful - never ever saw him except on stage at the shows screaming at us to keep clapping. Reception staff were unhelpful and often rude to the many people who had to have their cruise cards replaced due to having the wrong drinks package, and also other queries. MSC should certainly embark on a serious course of staff training to teach their staff what it means to be in the service industry. As the ship embarks and disembarks passengers at every port they have a lifeboat drill every time which means hundreds of passengers are wandering about with lifejackets on which adds to the congestion and also means that staff are taken from bars etc reducing the already poor service considerably. First major problem was when they announced with only an hour to go, in every language except English, we would not be docking in Amsterdam "due to weather conditions" and we would sail on to the industrial port of Rotterdam instead.I understand they have pulled this trick several times before and for many people this was going to be the high light of the cruise.It was a bit windy but no communication or explanation was offered of course.Then later in the cruise we were informed (by a paper slipped under our cabin door) that we would not be docking in Le Havre either due to a strike. Again no explanation. So we ended up with 3 sea days out of a 6 day cruise. There were very few activities organised on board the ship even on the extra sea days. The theatre was lovely but the shows poor and only lasted a maximum of 30mins (one was 25mins). The performers were dancers, singers, juggler and acrobats who looked quite impressive the first time, but every show was the same but they wore different costumes. No ascertainable theme that I could follow. We tried the buffet once - what a nightmare! Not enough space, too few seats and fellow passengers grabbing, pushing and very rude.Also too many people on board with no concept of queuing and trying to get in the lifts before people had exited - you couldn't make it up! EVERY fellow Brit that I spoke to couldn't wait to get off and all had removed the E10 per day service charge - what service we all thought? What was enlightening was that when we went to remove ours towards the end of the voyage the reception staff didn't even ask us why. They must be so used to doing this. We tipped generously the very few staff members who gave us good service. This was the worst cruise we have every been on and when on arrival back in Southampton they announced our disembarkation every one cheered - honestly!! Never again for us. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
I picked this cruise because we wanted to try MSC and it seemed good value for money.Well it didn,t start to well with a 2 hour embarkation process,but we could live with that.What i could not live with was the miserable staff lousy food ... Read More
I picked this cruise because we wanted to try MSC and it seemed good value for money.Well it didn,t start to well with a 2 hour embarkation process,but we could live with that.What i could not live with was the miserable staff lousy food and lousy entertainment.Then it went from bad to worse with the ports of call.First stop was Zeebrugge which was ok.Then Amsterdam which was one of the main reasons we chose this cruise,well that never happened as we were diverted to Rotterdam.Then came Hamburg,which by the way is closed on a Sunday,so please make a note of that..Then to top it all Le Harve which should have been the last port of call went on strike and we ended up back in Zeebrugge.When you book your cruise with MSC out of Southampton they will give you the impression that it will be Southampton to Southampton,so you will expect it to be mostly British.Well think again,its like a bus service at every port of call the are passengers leaving the ship and new passengers getting on.Then every night there would be another safety drill what a nightmare.Then on top of all the rubbish food,service and entertainment,they had the nerve to put 20 euros a day on the bill.I went to customer services and had that removed,i do not pay for something I do not receive.As a regular cruiser I have to rate this as the worst cruise we have ever been on in over 20 years of cruising,and would not recommend MSC to anyone. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
[We were a party of 15, celebrating our friends 30 Wedding Anniversary. One of the guest was wheelchair bound.] Arrived at Southampton at 12.30 with luggage (3 suitcases) – Received luggage in our cabin at 20.30PM at night – no ... Read More
[We were a party of 15, celebrating our friends 30 Wedding Anniversary. One of the guest was wheelchair bound.] Arrived at Southampton at 12.30 with luggage (3 suitcases) – Received luggage in our cabin at 20.30PM at night – no explanation or apology as to why it took them nearly 8 hours to deliver. We were scheduled to be on the second dining seating at 20:30, I could not go to dinner due to the fact I had no “change of clothes” to wear!!! Cases finally arrived and were placed outside the cabin; the porter did not even knock the door to advise me they had arrived. We were a party of 15 people; they all received their luggage within 3 hours of being on board. We were advised to arrive for boarding by 13:00. We boarded the ship at 15:00 after having to wait nearly 2 hours in the "boarding lounge”? When I asked why we were waiting, I was told, "we are very busy today and weather problems delaying the previous leg” The main sitting area in the reception did not have any wheelchair access. Upgraded to the All Inclusive drinks package but the Boarding Pass was incorrect and did not include the correct drinks package paid for – had to go to the main reception to have the pass replaced. We asked the receptionist if any other charges would be added to our boarding pass, he replied yes, a daily charge of 10 Euros - per person – a one off 1 Euro charge for Unicef. I said that this was not made aware to us when booking the cruise. We felt that it was a little underhanded and asked for both charges to be taken off our cards, as was not happy to pay either of them. He said fine and removed both charges. On the first day, we were notified that Amsterdam was cancelled due to weather conditions, though no one could understand this. This meant staying in Zeebrugge for two days, one wasted. We received correspondence in the way of a printed A4 letter that had been left in SOME not all cabins, which implied that MSC were laying on coaches for us so that they could take us to Amsterdam. This was not the case, we arrived outside the ship around 4pm to be told that the transfer to did not apply to us and we would have to make our own way to Amsterdam by taxi or by using the metro? We tried to book a taxi that would take a wheelchair but was unsuccessful. After an hour, we re-boarded the ship. There was a transfer charge of around 15.90 Euros from the port into the City Centre every time we docked. I think that after paying nearly £700 and an All Inclusive Drinks package, I was not willing to pay another 60.00 Euros just to be taken to the nearest city centre. I have been on five other cruises before and have NEVER had to pay a transfer from the port to the City centres. Finally, after 6 days at sea, we decided to go into Le Havre. We bought a bus shuttle ticket for €4 each and was advised that it was a wheelchair friendly bus. We were dropped off at the City centre. We spent a few hours in the centre and then decided to board the bus back to the Port. We waited for the bus to arrive and tried to board the bus but the driver lowered the ramp for our disabled friend to get on it, but the ramp was in front of a tree, which meant she could not positon the wheelchair correctly in order to get onto the bus, we asked the driver if she would please move the bus down a little so she could get onto the bus and she closed the doors and drove off. We decided to walk back to the port, which took over 1 hour, mainly because not all the walking paths are “wheelchair” friendly!!! The ship was beautiful and the cabin was the best I have ever stayed in, the bathroom was well equipped and the shower was very roomy. The casino and shops were ok. The balcony was a good size, the room very clean, however, some of the crew lacked training and basic customer service skills. The food was OK. The entertainment was poor. We had a beautiful theatre but most of the productions that were shown were not up to my standards. I would say that I was actually bored on this cruse, not much to do. Surely, if they were to show a few movies in the afternoon in the theatre would not be that costly. You could watch a movie in your cabin for a fee of €7. No coffee or tea after dinner, no water on the table, we had to keep asking the waiter to leave the bottle of water when he bought it. I was told that room service for a room with a balcony was free but it was not. It was not made clear to us that this MSC cruise was equivalent of a hop-on-hop-off bus. Whenever we disembarked, we would pick up new passengers or passengers would get off the ship, at times it felt more like a ferry than a cruise, which was due to new passengers at each port. Every day someone was being called to safety briefing, which disrupted staff in their usual roles and made services a little disjointed. This must have been frustrating for the staff too. Every port saw a large number of passengers embark and disembark, consisting of French, Dutch, German, Italian, Russian, Brazilian, and the rest of the world. Every time there was an announcement obviously, it was in all those languages, which went on and on! The service in general seem a little dis-organised and chaotic, even the staff seem a little lost as to what to do next. Even when asking the staff a simple question like, “which way is the casino?” we got 3 different answers – a little scary when on a cruise ship with over 4,000+ people – god help us if there was an emergency . Most of the people we spoke to said they would NEVER to back on an MSC cruise, us included which is a great shame because as I said, the ship's décor and staterooms are lovely, but the service and the "continental way" let the side down in a big way. What a waste. I hope MSC learn their lesson with the feedback emails they are going to receive. The whole experience was one that I would not like to repeat anytime soon. MSC Preziosa you need to do a lot better than what you have done in order to get me to go on another cruise with you. Sorry but no thanks. We were offered a free cruise to fill in their review form. I was not looking to win a FREE cruise I merely wanted to get the chance to voice my opinion on my BAD experience. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2017
We cruised from Southampton to Zeebrugge, Amsterdam, Hamburg, Le Havre and back to Southampton in September 2017. First problem.... 1 hour 45 minutes to check in... ridiculous ! Once on the ship we were deliberately steered into what I ... Read More
We cruised from Southampton to Zeebrugge, Amsterdam, Hamburg, Le Havre and back to Southampton in September 2017. First problem.... 1 hour 45 minutes to check in... ridiculous ! Once on the ship we were deliberately steered into what I can only describe as a high pressure sales team trying to sell you a drinks package. When I said we hardly drank she looked at me as if I was lying to her, in the end I just walked away, we were hassled all night to buy the package, my Wife just wanted to get off the ship by this point !! Great start... The ship itself is beautiful with the largest inside cabin and shower we have ever had on a cruise. But the whole experience is bought down by ( not all ) but the bulk of the crew who in our opinion need training in the art of actually caring and speaking to people ! Leaving and boarding the ship you were lucky to get grunted at let alone a smiling welcoming face !n fact one female crew member dropped my Wife's boarding card , then stood and watched as my Wife struggled to pick it up even though she has a disability !! The food wasn't always to our taste, but you accept that with so many nationalities on board, but the 20hr a day buffet after around 9-10pm is a joke unless you like pizza ...But the one thing that really surprised us was the lack of hand washing in the ship. This is a recipe for disaster. Lot's of cruises have had problems with infections on board, spreading throughout the ship. Even when the handwashing machines were working, there was little or no enforcement from any crew members. Unbelievable !! The theatre is wonderful, beautiful in fact, but we thought the productions that we saw could have been better, done mainly by the on board dancers ,singers, acrobats and jugglers. We spent most evenings in the Safari bar as we liked the group in there. It wasn't just us complaining, in fact I have never in all the years we have been cruising heard so many people disgruntled,mainly with the attitude of certain crew members. To top it off, they were offering a free cruise to people who filled in their review form.. We didn't fill it in for obvious reasons.. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2017
Beautiful ship, great cabin steward & the rest was rubbish, Balcony & cabin were small but bathroom was larger than expected. It was kept in pristine order. Food left a lot to be desired, not even a free glass of iced water in the ... Read More
Beautiful ship, great cabin steward & the rest was rubbish, Balcony & cabin were small but bathroom was larger than expected. It was kept in pristine order. Food left a lot to be desired, not even a free glass of iced water in the restaurant. The portions were small & even veg had to be requested. The buffet was like a rugby scrum especially at breakfast. We were not popular with non Brits as we had tea & coffee facilities in the cabin & they were refused this luxury. Customer care was non-existent in all areas - MSC lag behind many of their competitors in this important interface. Punctuality does not seem to be a high priority on this ship - we were informed that “ it was always late” at certain ports. We have cruised many times & with several lines but, as with many on this cruise, never again with MSC. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
The ship was excellent but the organisation was terrible.over 2 hours to board no help finding your cabin was told when I booked that as I had paid for the fantastica cabin we would have a sofa but no sofa and when I asked about this was ... Read More
The ship was excellent but the organisation was terrible.over 2 hours to board no help finding your cabin was told when I booked that as I had paid for the fantastica cabin we would have a sofa but no sofa and when I asked about this was told all cabins booked I asked what the difference was between my cabin and the standard cabin I was told I got free room service but I asked if I ordered room service I had no where to eat it I was told to use the bed . On arrival at our first port we queued for over 3 hours on our second port we sat in the bar until the queue got shorter and we joined the end again from start to finish about 3 hours. Third port of call docked early before 7 in the morning in Hamburg got off about 10 o'clock just to be told that everything in Hamburg is closed on Sundays ,I found out later that this was the start and finish of the cruise ,should have guessed this because the night before in the theatre there was a big farewell to the German guests.next 22hour buffet was open but no with much food ,one night we went in ar about midnight to find we had a choice on fruit salad, small cakes or half cut filled rolls ( to cold to eat ).i could go on but as this was our first cruise and if it had not been for other passengers of all nationalities telling us that this was not the norm for cruising I don't think I would go again as I said beautiful ship wrong company own it Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
We decided to go on MSC as we were allowed to transfer our loyalty status from Celebrity over to this cruise, which made us black, their top level. Never having cruised with this line before this was a taster cruise. The ship is beautiful ... Read More
We decided to go on MSC as we were allowed to transfer our loyalty status from Celebrity over to this cruise, which made us black, their top level. Never having cruised with this line before this was a taster cruise. The ship is beautiful and the cabins are quite large. It is kept beautifully clean. Unfortunately, they have no idea how to run this ship. They need to take a leaf out of how the Americans run their ships. It was the most boring cruise we have ever been on. After 40+ cruises we are well travelled. Sailing from Southampton we assumed that there would be no more embarkation, unfortunately, this was not the case. Every port saw a large number of passengers embark and disembark, consisting of French, Dutch,German, itailian,Russian, Brazilian, and the rest of the world. Every time there was an announcement obviously it was in all those languages which went on and on! The cruise was more like a ferry trip with food to match. The sea days were so so boring, no lectures, no cinema, just a couple of dance classes. The entertainment was poor. You could watch a movie in your cabin for a fee of €7. No coffee or tea after dinner, no water on the table. The list goes on and on. Even though we got certain perks with the black status we could never be enticed back onto this cruise line. It's very true, you get what you pay for in this world. Go cheap, get cheap, never again!!! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
I have been on numerous other cruises but the MSC Preziosa was the worst ever. Even though it was supposed to be a new ship, the décor was out-of-date, dark, and tacky looking. The cabin was dirty and there was some trash under the bed ... Read More
I have been on numerous other cruises but the MSC Preziosa was the worst ever. Even though it was supposed to be a new ship, the décor was out-of-date, dark, and tacky looking. The cabin was dirty and there was some trash under the bed from previous guests. We had to request the cabin be properly cleaned. The ship seemed overcrowded. There was no where you could go without having to weave through a crowd of people. You always had to wait for a seat or a place at the bar or a chance to play a slot machine. The hot tub was always at capacity, you couldn't get to use any of the machines in their small gym, the bowling alley was broken, and the pools were always closed due to the weather. The only time you could get some peace and quiet was in your cabin. The food was terrible. We were given fish that was cold and raw inside. The pork was rancid and the vegetables were always overcooked and so salty that you could not eat them. I was given silverware nicely wrapped in a napkin and when I unfolded it, the silverware had not been washed. It had chunks of food dried all over it. The "fine dining" that you paid extra for was a joke. It was located right next to an arcade so you had the noise of the games and unruly kids running in and out of the dining room. The food during the specialty meal was a set menu that you could not change, even though a few of our group had dietary restrictions. The chef refused to make any adjustments so they basically had bread and some cheese for dinner. The buffet was even worse. There were not enough seats and we had to eat two meals standing up. They only opened a few food stations, not all of them, so the area around the buffet was crowded and food kept running out. The ship kept changing our itinerary. We were supposed to go to France but they cancelled that completely. They also cancelled Belgium but went back to it two days later. We were constantly late getting into ports and the process for disembarking was horrendous. The first day they only had one person checking each person off the ship. It created long lines of very angry people that were pushing and shoving. Some tried to cut in line and that almost ended up with violence breaking out. There were no staff members in attendance to deal with the problems or let us know why we were lined up in hot crowded hallways for over an hour trying to get off the ship. Some of the days they allowed people to disembark from two areas but it was still chaos. Because the ship was always late into port, and some of the ports didn't expect us due to the change of itinerary, the transportation was always messed up and the excursions were always delayed. One of the excursions was a two hour bus ride and was supposed to give us five hours in town, then a two hour drive back. Because they were so disorganized we only got two hours in town. Definitely not worth it. Another time people got off the ship but had to wait for a shuttle to take them off the port property. There were not enough busses so it was a two hour wait outside in cold rain with no shelter. Most people gave up because they were chilled and soaked to the bone. They had to return to the ship. We were supposed to get two days in Amsterdam but instead, we got in at 10am and the ship was now leaving early, the following morning at 9am. We were so sick of the crowded, dirty ship with bad food and no time in ports that we jumped ship. As soon as we got into Amsterdam we left the cruise. We stayed in a hotel and enjoyed two full days of touring the city. We then returned to Hamburg by train. It was much faster and nicer than traveling on the ship. I will never take a cruise on an MSC ship again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2017
We cruised on MSC Preziosa from Sept 10 – 17, 2017. We’ve cruised 5 times with Royal Caribbean International (“RCI”) and absolutely loved every one. While we were hesitant to try another cruise line, we decided to try MSC as they ... Read More
We cruised on MSC Preziosa from Sept 10 – 17, 2017. We’ve cruised 5 times with Royal Caribbean International (“RCI”) and absolutely loved every one. While we were hesitant to try another cruise line, we decided to try MSC as they had a two for one sale and appeared to be more economical. Let me start with the positives. The ship was elegant, the state rooms were great (we had a balcony), our room steward was attentive and friendly (not that we asked for much) but he was there if we needed him. The entertainment staff in the Safari Lounge and Green Sax Lounge were awesome as they would pull people up on the dance floor and ensure you were having a good time. We met some amazing people (other guests) and one I can tell will be a lasting friendship I’m sure. This is where any positives end. The excursions were run by privately owned companies and were top notch and our experiences there could not have been better – except, many were cut short because MSC could not maintain their schedules and this of course reduced our expected excursion times; there was no rebate or apology from MSC as we missed some of what was promised. We were a party of 5 and had the 8:30 pm sitting in one of the dining rooms. Our waiter and assistant waiter were not friendly at all; they didn’t even seem to like each other and were noticeably impatient if we took time deciding what we wanted. Menu selections were ordinary, uninspired and the food portions were meager The first night we all ended up going to the buffet afterwards as we were still hungry. We all started ordering two entrees the rest of the cruise and our waiter did not hide the fact that he was displeased with this. As noted, the food was OK, but nothing to rave about. They do not serve water, tea or coffee in the dining room. If you want water you must buy a 1 litre bottle of room-temperature mineral water. If we wanted coffee or tea, we had to go to the buffet or the coffee bar after supper. Three of us went in on a wine package, one ordered wine by the glass and the 5th person drank beer. Wine was served no problem. Beer was a different story. We were told it was ‘too far’ [to get it] by the waiter. So, one of our guests had to go to a lounge every night and bring back a beer so he could have it with his meal. A maître d never once visited our table. MSC automatically adds a tipping charge to your bill. The problem with this is that staff do not have to work for the tips and just don’t bother giving good service. Two days before the end of our cruise we had the tipping charges removed from our bill. Obviously, they are accustomed to passengers not getting good service as they did not ask why. We did give a very generous tip directly to our room steward as he deserved it. It did seem as if our waiter had gotten wind of the tip cancellation as the last night in the dining room he was attentive, friendly and delivered beer! The 24-hour Reception Desk was not opened 24 hours and was often closed. There were very few activities on board, so our first two days at sea were quiet. Everything was so disorganized. The ship was late coming into all but one port and this affected the length of our excursions. The first port was supposed to be Le Havre, France. But we never got there. We were advised the day before that due to a strike we would not be able to go to the port. It was rescheduled for the 3rd day in port. That didn’t happen either. While terribly disappointed, as this was one of the reasons we chose this itinerary, we understood these things were out of the ship’s control. Since our trip; however, we have heard comments by other cruisers that sailed different dates with MSC that they never got to La Havre either. Seems strange that this would happen on different cruises. Perhaps a lure for a visit to Paris which never materializes. Beware! It ws difficult to find your way around the ship; plenty of elevators (many that go nowhere you need them to – e.g., the dining room floor you had to access from the deck below – not friendly at all for mobility impaired). The decorators really overdid the black marble theme with black, grey and chrome predominant, so the overall effect is not colorful or vacation-friendly inspirational. The ship’s engines were loud and the entire ship vibrated every time coming into and out of port. On MSC Preziosa, a non-smoking lounge is open to the casino deck below which renders non-smoking status completely pointless. Custom officials from Zeebrugge came onboard to meet with all non-Europeans. We had to see them before leaving the ship. MSC staff had no idea what they were doing. Those in our excursion group were to follow a guide who would take us to custom officials. He brought us to 3 different locations, going up and downstairs, as each spot he was told we had to go somewhere else. After we finally got to see customs officers we were brought out and told to stand off to the side in the hallway. The hallway was jammed with hundreds of passengers. Two women asked our guide where they could go for customs as they were just going off ship on their own. After he told them where he thought they should go one woman totally lost it. She said she was told 4 different places to go and he just told her one of the places that she had already been turned away from. She started yelling that this was a terrible cruise line, terrible ship, terrible staff, terrible everything. At this point the many of the hundreds standing in the hallways erupted into yelling as they were also fed up with the disorganization, and whole experience as well. Crew members really did not seem to know the ropes; it was like this was either their first time doing this, or, MSC just did not care. It would do MSC well to send themselves and their crews on a competing cruise line’s vacation to see how it really should be done. Announcements were often not broadcast in the cabins, so you had to open the door to hear them and sometimes they could be missed. There was a time change for one port that was noted in our daily newsletter but no announcements were made regarding this. We read the newsletters but not everyone does. I did hear that some excursions were missed due to people not aware of the time change. This was our first AND LAST cruise with MSC. We now say MSC stands for 'Many Scheduling Changes' or 'My Sucky Cruise'. We’ve had 5 phenomenal cruises with RCI who recommend, but does not automatically charge you for tips. You decide what you pay each person either using RCI’s tipping guidelines or paying what you feel the person deserves. You can pre-pay these or pay at the end. We usually pre-pay based on their tipping guidelines and then give additional tips to those who deserve it. Everyone deserves their tips on RCI; a well-trained, entertaining, and engaging crew. Quite the opposite on MSC. RCI dining room staff have always been nothing short of amazing. You have a lead waiter, waiter, maître d and bar staff that you see every day. The maître d ensures that your service has been good. The bar staff will deliver any beverage you want. All dining room staff are friendly, get to know you, advise you of special notices you should be aware of for the next day (e.g. time changes, weather, different currency, etc.). Water, tea, and coffee are standard fare in the dining rooms, as we North Americans would expect. We always pay RCI dining room staff above the minimum tipping suggested as they truly deserve it. The food in the dining room is phenomenal and the portions are great and you are not hungry afterwards. It is not merely re-plated items that can be found on the buffet, as were the MSC desserts. We all accept that weather conditions dictate cruise itineraries once you set out. Not once in our 5 cruises with RCI were we ever late arriving into port. The ships have sometimes been delayed in leaving the port due to weather, etc, but always made up the time while the guests slept. The engines are quiet, the ship does not vibrate and you could be at dinner and suddenly realize we had left port. Important announcements are always broadcast in the cabins so you are aware of any events, time changes activities, etc. There are so many activities on RCI that it is hard to decide which one you want to do as they all sound great. RCI will certainly continue to have my loyalty. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
MSC for the first time and last. This was a weeks cruise from Southampton, taking in Zeebrugge, Amsterdam, Hamburg and Le Havre, only we did not do this. On the first day we were notified that Amsterdam was cancelled due to weather ... Read More
MSC for the first time and last. This was a weeks cruise from Southampton, taking in Zeebrugge, Amsterdam, Hamburg and Le Havre, only we did not do this. On the first day we were notified that Amsterdam was cancelled due to weather conditions, though no one could understand this. This meant staying in Zeebrugge for two days, one wasted. We went to Bruges and used the local coaches which were very reliable and cost effective. The Hamburg overnight stay was ruined as MSC decided to place the ship in a parade. which meant that no one could leave the ship on the first day (saturday). The next day was a sunday and whilst we could leave the ship everything in Hamburg was closed. We then instead of cruising to Le Havre detoured to Rotterdam as Le Havre was cancelled.Three out of four ports cancelled or changed which left us cold towards MSC. It did not end there as we were provide with three different times for arriving at Southampton the scheduled docking was 07:00, we eventually left the ship at 11:30. Apparantly the ship was late because of the weather. As we were leaving the pa sustem announced that Le Havre was cancelled for the next cruise. Onl advising on this as we have never experienced a cruise so bad. If that had been it, we may have had a rethink and tred another cruise, however the food in the Golden Lobster resaruant in the evening was extremely poor, selection was poor and the portion sizes extremely small as per other guests reports. To add that you have to pay for water with your meal, and then it is served up in a plastic bottle is poor. Coffee is not offered and if you require a cup you have to again pay. In the Maya / Inca buffet the food choice is again poor, the quality of the produce not very good and the service the worst we have ever experienced. No idea among the staff on clearing and cleaning tables. No idea of maintaining food trays at a resonable level. Instead food was congealed and cold. Coffee urns are well laid out but again the coffee was usually cold and staff had to be asked to replenish the urns with hot coffee. In general the staff and officers were not very helpful, no smiles, no hellos an no help when required. On several days guests asked questions only for officers and staff to turn around and walk away basically ignoring you. Probably been spoilt by other cruise lines which operate their ships with pride and their customers as friends. All of the above is a fair reflection of what we experienced and would never wish to relive in the future which is sad, as MSC Preziosa is a large ship with plenty of lounges and bars, though other than that not much else to do. There is a casino and shops though the mini mall was closed throughout our cruise. The theatre has evening shows which we initially liked, but after the third we realised it was all much the same and no guest artists to break up the same sort of dance, jugglin and acrobatic routines. Some singing appeared to be live, but others mimed. This as stated was our first MSC cruise and we have had 14 cruises with othr companies over the last 7 years. If MSC are serious about providing an excellent cruise / holiday they will have to do a lot better to entice us back. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2017
Recommended by my family who had cruised and enjoyed the service before. Southampton to zeebruge , Amsterdam , Hamburg, le Havre. It became Zeebrugge 2 nights, Hamburg 2 days , Rotterdam and home Food terrible , cold and poor ... Read More
Recommended by my family who had cruised and enjoyed the service before. Southampton to zeebruge , Amsterdam , Hamburg, le Havre. It became Zeebrugge 2 nights, Hamburg 2 days , Rotterdam and home Food terrible , cold and poor quality. Restaurant food was not in the same league as other cruise companies we have been with previously. Customer servicece staff inadequately trained and poor English . Did not take responsibility for problems encountered. Room was looked after very well by the young polite and happy individual. The room however was a disaster. Everything in the room vibrated and I ran out of towels etc trying to muffle the noise from vibrating doors / walls / safe etc. Customer service failed us throughout this experience. The excursions were appalling as we did not end up in the ports we were supposed to. On one trip we were told to be back for 5pm. We spent five hours on the coach , two hours in the city of Amsterdam' to be back for departure at 5pm. We left at 9pm!!!!!!. We left several hours late at every port and arrived very late at Southampton. This resulted in many of us with rearranged travel plans home. Organisation was however the absolute pits. I cannot emphasise how bad this was and I was determined not to join the hoarders of dissatisfied on this cruise. Truly awful Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
I choose this cruise at start because of the promise it was a family cruise boat and had a fantastic fun kids club. I was told that the cruise line had partnered with Lego and had refurbished their kids club locations with Lego theme. I ... Read More
I choose this cruise at start because of the promise it was a family cruise boat and had a fantastic fun kids club. I was told that the cruise line had partnered with Lego and had refurbished their kids club locations with Lego theme. I was told by msc representatives that this applied to this cruise ship. I was told the kids club was fantastic and full of fun and plenty for them to do. Kids club was from 9am - 11pm and we could leave them there in good hands with a fantastic team who worked with children and made the club fun fun fun..... More like boring, unhappy and little to do. The staff were never pleasant when we dropped kids off. They had a routine timetable each day which was the same and quite regimented. The staff, especially the girl with blonde hair never smiled and there main language was French or Italian. They did not speak fluent English and I found them rude and never smiled. The kids hated the club. When it was movie time they put in a movie in the language which most children spoke and if that wasn't your own language you still had to sit through it and watch the movie. The kids could not do anything else. The room for the kids was not Lego themed nor big. It was small room and very little for them to do. I only managed to put kids in 2/3 times and that was only a couple of hours cause they complained it was so bad. The staff were not fun nor entertaining. Oh and the Xbox and wifi times - when it specified Lego none of that happened. They played sky-landers and nothing else. No Fifa but another game. The same every day. They had 1 tv, 1 play station console and 1 wii. It was awful. Terrible. So outside of kids club there was 1 small play area with a small pirate ship and slide. And then a water play area. That's it. Nothing else. Oh wait.... I forgot they had a games room which was nothing to bag about and needed money to play. The F1 formula virtual world was a racing car which kept breaking down and the 4 D cinema was a virtual 4 D ride which lasted 5 mins. Imagine that's it for 7 days....7 days!!! Awful!!! Kids had nothing to do . Nothing was fun. Never seen staff so unhappy to be there. Was totally mis-sold. I took 4 kids. Worse decision ever!! The disembarkment was a shambles aswell and I paid for transfers which was cheaper and easier if you take the taxi! All in all not recommended!! Read Less
35 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
We chose this MSC Cruise (our first with MSC) as the dates suited and the ports were very appealing to us. As this was our 8th cruise (enjoyed all 7 previous cruises with RCL (5), Carnival (1) and Princess (1)) we understood that all ... Read More
We chose this MSC Cruise (our first with MSC) as the dates suited and the ports were very appealing to us. As this was our 8th cruise (enjoyed all 7 previous cruises with RCL (5), Carnival (1) and Princess (1)) we understood that all cruises get both good and bad reviews so we decided to book despite many bad reviews. What a mistake we made! All the bad reviews re MSC service and food quality are absolutely correct and consequently we will NEVER cruise with MSC again! First problem was embarkation at Rome (Civitavecchia).Very slow and disorganized with only one or two check -in personnel to process a large number of people. Plenty of other MSC personnel there pushing the drink packages! Second problem was the dining service, especially in the utterly chaotic Inca/Maya Buffets on the 14th Deck. Trying to get eye contact with the staff here, never mind service, is impossible. They all walk around with their heads down unlike any other cruises we have been on. On every occasion we ended up having to get our own drinks (both free and paid drinks) and on many occasions we had to clear previously used tables for ourselves. Third problem is the Buffets themselves! As stated above, they are utterly chaotic and akin to a busy corridor due to the strange design. This results in you having to wander around the entire buffet (150m almost) looking for certain items - both sides should be a mirror image of the other but they are not. This leads to many people moving around in all directions and we witnessed many collisions resulting in food and drink spillages. Fourth problem is the buffet food. A nice range (especially if you are Italian with pizzas, pastas etc) but we also found the food to be bland and almost always cold, especially the breakfasts. And no nice specially prepared breakfast omelettes with MSC like other cruise ships! Fifth problem was the food and service in the L'Arabesque Restaurant (one of the main formal dining areas). For the first time ever on a cruise, our waiters could hardly speak/understand English, did not engage in any small talk/conversations and did not make any recommendations. Also, food was very Italian and portions very small compared with previous cruises. As the second sitting was so late (9.30pm!) we chose the early 7.00pm sitting and every night the aircon and lights were turned up by 8.30pm to get us to clear the dining room. Note also, that MSC do NOT serve tea or coffee after dinner in main dining rooms. Sixth problem is the multilingual announcements and entertainment. On our cruise all announcements were in SIX languages which is a LOT to have to listen to and something we never experienced on previous Med cruises. To cater for multiple languages most of the entertainment is music, acrobatics etc and definitely no comedy. However, all the Theatre Shows were excellently presented and choreographed especially the Queen Tribute and the Platinum Theatre is by far the best cruise ship theatre we have experienced with great views and sound wherever we sat. On the positive side, the MSC Preziosa is a large,beautiful, clean ship with nice modern decor, a lovely infinity pool at the back of the ship, a great selection of pools (even a big water slide), a nice selection of bars and very quiet/stable throughout our cruise (so quiet we never even heard or felt it docking at any of the six ports!). Another MSC positive is it's range of drink package options which they push very heavily at embarkation. We opted for the €26 per day per person Allegrissimo Package which was excellent value for money albeit with a very small selection of wines and beers. It also includes an excellent selection of Cocktails, liqueurs, great smoothies, milkshakes and ice creams (only in Phoenician Plaza where the service is EXCELLENT at all times!) premium coffees and bottled water (TIP: make sure to purchase before sailing to avoid extra 15% service which applies if you purchase at embarkation or on the ship). As experienced cruisers we knew that the shore excursions would be expensive and they are. For example, they charge €32.90 per person for a "Transfer to the Beach" at Valencia. This cost us only €10 for a taxi each way to the same beach. So €20.00 for two compared with €65.80. (TIP: do a bit of googling before you arrive at each port and you will save a lot of money). In summary, if the quality of food and service is important to you, do NOT book an MSC Cruise! Read Less
MSC Preziosa Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 3.3
Entertainment 4.0 3.1
Public Rooms 5.0 4.1
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.7
Family 5.0 3.7
Service 4.0 3.5
Value For Money 5.0 3.4
Rates 5.0 4.1

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