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I chose this cruise for the great itinerary. As for embarkation, getting aboard the ship went incredibly smoothly, but then the issues began. The tone set from the beginning was negative. No welcoming glass of juice, much less champagne, and no one available to help with directions. No sail away party. For the first two days, there was a lot of finger pointing about which department was responsible for fixing snags. For example, our key cards did not work, a problem not rectified for six hours. Lines were long to have this addressed because an enormous number of passengers had issues. What I learned from this experience is to avoid taking a cruise on a ship just out of drydock, partly because of the newly introduced glitches and partly because the refurbishment wasn’t finished – paint fumes were everywhere. Neither the observation deck nor the library were available for the entire cruise. Onboard credit was given for this mishap, but it was inadequate, especially for passengers without a veranda. After the first few days, the staff went out of their way to be helpful and were very pleasant and friendly. The size of our veranda room was adequate, but could have been better laid-out—the closet/bathroom area didn’t make it easy for two people to get ready at the same time. The food was good, but not exceptional. There were unusually short hours for both the dining room and the buffet. The passengers we met were well-traveled, very friendly, and interesting. On a positive note, the ports were exceptional. They were all enjoyable, scenic, historic, and at times breathtaking. Most of the shore excursion guides were informative and engaging (with one big exception in Gozo.) The astonishing beauty, wide-ranging history, and charming Mediterranean atmosphere I encountered on this itinerary made this a wonderful trip.

Exceptional Itinerary But Below Par Shipboard Experience

Westerdam Cruise Review by HappyTravelFan

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
I chose this cruise for the great itinerary. As for embarkation, getting aboard the ship went incredibly smoothly, but then the issues began. The tone set from the beginning was negative. No welcoming glass of juice, much less champagne, and no one available to help with directions. No sail away party. For the first two days, there was a lot of finger pointing about which department was responsible for fixing snags. For example, our key cards did not work, a problem not rectified for six hours. Lines were long to have this addressed because an enormous number of passengers had issues. What I learned from this experience is to avoid taking a cruise on a ship just out of drydock, partly because of the newly introduced glitches and partly because the refurbishment wasn’t finished – paint fumes were everywhere. Neither the observation deck nor the library were available for the entire cruise. Onboard credit was given for this mishap, but it was inadequate, especially for passengers without a veranda.

After the first few days, the staff went out of their way to be helpful and were very pleasant and friendly.

The size of our veranda room was adequate, but could have been better laid-out—the closet/bathroom area didn’t make it easy for two people to get ready at the same time.

The food was good, but not exceptional. There were unusually short hours for both the dining room and the buffet.

The passengers we met were well-traveled, very friendly, and interesting.

On a positive note, the ports were exceptional. They were all enjoyable, scenic, historic, and at times breathtaking. Most of the shore excursion guides were informative and engaging (with one big exception in Gozo.) The astonishing beauty, wide-ranging history, and charming Mediterranean atmosphere I encountered on this itinerary made this a wonderful trip.
HappyTravelFan’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
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