We were told to have our main luggage ready in our Singapore hotel room at 9 o'clock on the morning of departure so that we would get on the boat early. We were told to vacate the hotel at 11:30am and board the coach.
At 11:20 we called reception to say our luggage was still in the room. No luggage had been collected from anyone. A hotel manager collected ours personally and a holiday rep in the foyer asked us to ensure that it was our luggage going on the van. It was 11:55 before all the guests had sorted out their luggage and the coach left the hotel in convoy with the luggage van.
After a short journey to the port we were driven into a smelly underground area where we had to collect our own luggage to transfer it thirty yards to a disorganised full baggage loading area. We were then escorted to the booking in area where we first had to go through an airport type scanner. Then it got farcical. We were given immigration forms to fill in. Why wasn't this done at the hotel? We had to then queue up to go through check in. We were guided to one specific queue which we followed for half an hour before being told that it was the wrong queue and we should join an even longer queue. We were in this second queue for an hour before getting to the front and sorted out all the various paperwork. Then we went quickly through a boarding before joining another queue to board the boat. This was so that they could take your passport off you and give a receipt. I am now holding a fistful of paperwork in one hand when a member of the welcoming party sprays my other hand with hand gel. My passport receipt goes flying off out the door when I attempt to shove everything under my arm to rub in the hand gel. I am then immediately given a welcoming drink. A dexterous octopus may have handled this situation rather better than I did.
The cabin carpet was damp and smelled. We had to open the cabin door for a through draught to get rid of the smell. The steward had a blower in for two days. The balcony was covered in bits of paint. The arm of one of the balcony chairs fell off. The opaque balcony partitions were loose and rattled so we had to stuff paper in them. The balcony door handle was corroded. The toilet failed to flush for a day and a half and we had to go one deck down to use a public toilet. Our white clothes turned yellow in the damp wardrobe.