This was my fourth RCL cruise and I saw huge drops in all areas for quality.
First we waited over 2 hours to check in in Boston. Having checked in there with Holland America I could see they only hired 50% of the staff, for a larger ship. I spoke to one of the check in agents, who are contract employees, the same ones work for all the cruise lines,
He said yes Royal Caribbean will never hire enough people.
I have not been on an RCI ship in about 7 years and I will never go on one again.
For one thing the quality of the food has really dropped. No high cost food items at all.
All the supposed desserts are just Jello and Cool Whip made into a Mango Slice.
Dinner is still decent but lobster only one night on a 2 week cruise?
No smoked salmon offered on the breakfast buffet, you can order it in the dining room.
Breakfast in the dining room has a breakfast bar for cereals and fruit, This eliminates wait staff. Everything on the buffets are totally low cost food items. No waffles for sit down breakfast?
First I will say we are not Diamond or Diamond Plus, all the revenue for the cruise seems to be going to give them special perks. We had an outside cabin and when we showed up there were no toiletries. Just one bar of soap. I asked our cabin attendant and he said that he could get some for the suites for us. So now we have to pack our own lotion?
The bridge director was a total joke. He was very hard of hearing and couldn't understand what anyone said. The first lesson day he was totally unprepared for the lesson or the game. He kept telling us that someone from the cruise line was supposed to be there to set everything up. They didn't.
Also they did not offer free shuttles to go into port. The shuttles are now a money making operation for RCI. Plus on one port the city offered free shuttles but we were not told about them and told that we have to pay for an RCI shuttle. By the way they do offer free trips in to town for the crew.
The television is horrible, no news channels for most of the trip and no printed newspaper.
If you like good food eat at Giovanni's every night. Great value there. Plus the crew is wonderful. They work very hard and under all this cost cutting it must be tough. Lots of them have been there over 10 years so they don't have a lot of options to switch to another cruise line.