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My family, including two sons aged 19 and 13 had a wonderful time visiting Norway, The Faroe Islands and Iceland. The scenery was amazing. We stopped off at Bergen first walking around the port visiting the fish market . We walked up to the Floyen Restaurant through residential area, parks and woodlands. Stopping to enjoy the views below of the Fjord and the port. It was quite a strenuous walk and not advisable to anyone who is not used to climbing up hills. At the top we enjoyed the stunning views and caught the Funicular back down to the town. Our second stop was Alesund a delightful port. We discovered the old wooden town houses and tasted the local bakes from the bakery. Finishing with a ride on an open top bus around the area. Our third, and favourite, was Gerainger, most spectacular scenery of all. We rambled along the trail of a waterfull, again quite a strenuous walk but very well worth the effort. Very quaint buildings, with grass covered roofs. We hired a Renault electric "Twizy" car with Satnav for a very enjoyable drive around the local roads visiting a farmhouse and beautiful scenic church overlooking the Fjord. We finished our trip with an exhilarating Rib ride on the Fjord for a closer look at the waterfalls. The food and entertainment on Board the Brilliance was excellent. When on board we hardly saw our boys as they had made friends and spent most evenings enjoying the activities and entertainment with the relevant groups. The Faroe Islands were very interesting, we visited the church and was lucky to be involved in a discussion with a local regarding the lifestyle and the whales within the area, which they do not hunt. Iceland, another fascinating country. We arranged an independent tour of the Island visiting the coast, hot springs and bubbling mud pools. Anyone visiting Iceland must go to the Blue Lagoon. Very helpful and friendly staff. So relaxing in beautiful warm waters sipping a prosecco. I was not overly impressed with the RC Brilliance of the Seas. In fact, I was extremely annoyed at having an extra 20% added on to all my bills for drinks as a gratuity with a further space on the bill for an optional gratuity. I queried this charge (as its not displayed on any of the drinks or fridge menus) when I was charged an extra 20% for a bottle of water in the mini bar in our room. Bearing in mind I had already paid over £350 up front for gratuities. When I questioned this I was advised that this additional 20% fee was for bar and waiting staff!! The gratuity I had already paid was for housekeeping staff! It is my opinion that this is not a gratuity but a service charge and should be shown as so. A gratuity is a gift!! I questioned why it was not advised anywhere on the menus etc and was informed it was printed on their website. In my opinion this is unethical, I questioned the fact that we were sailing in European waters and not American and they may have that system in America for paying staff but it was not acceptable in Europe. After a lengthy discussion I was eventually offered a refund which amounted to USD 108.00 in the extra gratuities that I had been charged. Again, In my personal opinion, I don't think this tipping system should be enforced it should be optional and paid for good service and not to supplement staff wages! Hence some of the attitude of some of the staff!!

Amazing Scenery; Shame About the Tipping System on Board

Brilliance of the Seas Cruise Review by Bev.a@btopenworld.com

Trip Details
My family, including two sons aged 19 and 13 had a wonderful time visiting Norway, The Faroe Islands and Iceland. The scenery was amazing. We stopped off at Bergen first walking around the port visiting the fish market . We walked up to the Floyen Restaurant through residential area, parks and woodlands. Stopping to enjoy the views below of the Fjord and the port. It was quite a strenuous walk and not advisable to anyone who is not used to climbing up hills. At the top we enjoyed the stunning views and caught the Funicular back down to the town.

Our second stop was Alesund a delightful port. We discovered the old wooden town houses and tasted the local bakes from the bakery. Finishing with a ride on an open top bus around the area.

Our third, and favourite, was Gerainger, most spectacular scenery of all. We rambled along the trail of a waterfull, again quite a strenuous walk but very well worth the effort. Very quaint buildings, with grass covered roofs. We hired a Renault electric "Twizy" car with Satnav for a very enjoyable drive around the local roads visiting a farmhouse and beautiful scenic church overlooking the Fjord. We finished our trip with an exhilarating Rib ride on the Fjord for a closer look at the waterfalls.

The food and entertainment on Board the Brilliance was excellent. When on board we hardly saw our boys as they had made friends and spent most evenings enjoying the activities and entertainment with the relevant groups.

The Faroe Islands were very interesting, we visited the church and was lucky to be involved in a discussion with a local regarding the lifestyle and the whales within the area, which they do not hunt. Iceland, another fascinating country. We arranged an independent tour of the Island visiting the coast, hot springs and bubbling mud pools. Anyone visiting Iceland must go to the Blue Lagoon. Very helpful and friendly staff. So relaxing in beautiful warm waters sipping a prosecco.

I was not overly impressed with the RC Brilliance of the Seas. In fact, I was extremely annoyed at having an extra 20% added on to all my bills for drinks as a gratuity with a further space on the bill for an optional gratuity. I queried this charge (as its not displayed on any of the drinks or fridge menus) when I was charged an extra 20% for a bottle of water in the mini bar in our room. Bearing in mind I had already paid over £350 up front for gratuities. When I questioned this I was advised that this additional 20% fee was for bar and waiting staff!! The gratuity I had already paid was for housekeeping staff! It is my opinion that this is not a gratuity but a service charge and should be shown as so. A gratuity is a gift!! I questioned why it was not advised anywhere on the menus etc and was informed it was printed on their website. In my opinion this is unethical, I questioned the fact that we were sailing in European waters and not American and they may have that system in America for paying staff but it was not acceptable in Europe. After a lengthy discussion I was eventually offered a refund which amounted to USD 108.00 in the extra gratuities that I had been charged. Again, In my personal opinion, I don't think this tipping system should be enforced it should be optional and paid for good service and not to supplement staff wages! Hence some of the attitude of some of the staff!!
Bev.a@btopenworld.com’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
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Ages 13 to 15
Ages 16+
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Cabin Review

Cabin
Not suitable for 3 adults and one child. We had to climb over the sofa bed to reach the bathroom!
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