Navigator of the seas (Royal Caribbean)
Let me start by saying the ship itself and all of its amenities are great. We enjoyed the variety of activities. We also through the ports of call were very nice and enjoyed Jamaica a great deal. That being said this is how our cruise with Royal Caribbean went…
My wife and I saved for this trip for a long time and we were very excited to be able to go. We spent a long time reading reviews and looking into cruise lines. We have been on 2 other lines (Carnival and Norwegian) and we were happy with them. I do not believe that our expectations were out of line and we try to be very grateful for every experience we have. Our trouble started as soon as we got to the port of Fort Lauderdale. While in line waiting for the porter to take our luggage we over heard him VERY loudly cussing and complaining about how he was only getting small tips. This went on for the entire 5 min or so while we waited in line. He seemed to get louder and more angry as we got closer. When it was our turn he stuck his hand in my wife's face and said very roughly "do you have a tip for me"? We had decided not to tip him because of his language and attitude (VERY BAD DECISION). As we walked away we talked about what he might do to our luggage.
So we now got on the ship and headed to our room. We found our floor but we were stopped and told our room was not ready because they were behind scheduled. We were told it would be around a half hour and we were ok with that. We spent about 45 min looking around the ship and then headed back to our floor. Again we were told that the room was not ready. So again we walked around while we waited. It ended up that we waited over 2 hours to get into our room. Still not upset by this point. Things happen. When we finally got in the room we started to unpack our carry on's and look at the room a bit. The room itself was typical in size and layout and what we expected and paid for. What we found as we looked closer was disgusting. I went to put some things in the draw next to the bed and found a male sex toy. The draws on both sides of the bed were full of an oily substance (you can guess what that was I’m sure). We immediately went to the front desk to complain and ask that our room be thoroughly cleaned. The guest service person was very apologetic and said she would take care of it. We headed back to the room and waited. While waiting we found that the safe was broken and not working. By that time the room attendant and his supervisor came in and took the trash can the toy was now in and said they would clean the room. A few min later he came back with the toy in his hand and tried to tell me it was a party favor they were handing out during the last cruise and that it was not a sex toy. I have pictures if you would like to see them and I am not naive. From what I had heard of the last sailing and what I know of things I can say that %100 that it was a sex toy and that it was disgusting! They cleaned the room but the drawers remained oily the whole trip.
So now it was past dinning time and our luggage was just getting there. And as expected the handle on our suitcase was broken. Back to the customer service desk again. The person at the desk asked that we bring her the luggage and that they would try to fix it and if they could not that they would compensate us for the suitcase. She told us that she would call us the next morning to let us know the outcome. We were as polite as possible with her but upset by that time. The next day was a day at sea and seemed to be ok for the most part.
We did start to notice two things that made us a wonder if this was a norm for Royal Caribbean. The majority of the staff had a very hard time understanding English and small things were let go for longer periods of time. For instance one night in the dining room I ordered stake and the server repeated shrimp. I said not steak and again he repeated shrimp. Finally I said no steak and pointed to the steak on the menu and he smiled and nodded and walked away. When the dinner came he brought me shrimp. This was a common thing with the majority of the staff. We also noticed things like dirty dishes being left to sit on tables for a very long time. Or cleanliness issues not being addressed for a very long time. All of the other cruises I have been on the staff was on the ball and took care of these issues quickly.
The next morning came and went and we got no call about our luggage but we had a day planned so I did not want to bother with it. We headed to our stop on Grand Cayman and our excursion. We were supposed to do a 4.5 hour excursion with part of that time spent swimming with stingrays and part swimming with dolphins. As we got there they sent us through some type of bird encounter which we found odd but we went along with it thinking it was filling time until the boat was ready. Next we took the 20 min boat ride to the sand bar where the sting rays were and spent around 15-20 with them before being told to load up. After the boat ride back to shore we were loaded back on the bus to go back to our ship even though every person on the bus except for 2 was agreeing that we paid to swim with the dolphins. They said that that was not part of the price and to talk to Royal Caribbean. So back to the ship and back to customer service we went.
This time we were told that our issue was going to be brought to the attention of the excursion manager and that he would call us. At the same time I asked about our luggage and was told that they could not fix it and was given a very poor quality suitcase would probably half of what I paid for the one that was broken. With out a call or any follow up we notice a $20 credit for our excursion and not a word (call) about the mix up. So we missed well over half the excursion but were only given less than quarter of our expense back. Not real fair and not very professional if you ask me but they didn't bother to ask.
The next night we went to a show and I purchased a drink for my wife and I before the show. The theater was not that busy yet. The waiter brought us our drinks and he gave me my card and recite. back. I didn't bother to look at the card I guess that was my fault but 4 hour later when we tried to get back in our room I found out that I had gotten the wrong card and that someone was using mine so back to customer service we went. This time we asked to speak to a manager. We just wanted to get off the ship by this time. We were brought into a back office and spoke to the assistant service desk manager. After telling him our story he polity apologized and said something along the lines of these things happen let me buy you a dinner in one of the specialty restaurants. We explained that we were not looking for a hand out but that we wanted to know if this was normal or if it was just us.
Finally he set us up to go on the wave runners in Labadee even though we had an excursion planned. we accepted thinking we could do both. The next morning we headed to the stand where the wave runners were and we were told that it had been canceled. We found out a few minutes later from another passenger that they had received a call the afternoon before letting them know that it was canceled. That means that the assistant manager the night before knowing how upset we were didn't bother to check and set us up on an excursion that had already been canceled. And yet another let down.
The food in the main dining room was so so all week but that last night we actually got up and left due to the quality of the food. The chicken was like shoe leather and my wife said her food tasted funny. So now that I have said all that you deiced was it just us and we had a fluke string of bad luck or is it this way all the way around Royal Caribbean. You deiced.
The cabin itself was fine. Average size and amenities. The cleanliness however was terrible.
I am not sure what our cabin category was. It was an inside on the 9th floor.
They did not fulfill the advertised activates.
chukka was the best!!
Not much to say