1. Home
  2. Cruise Reviews
  3. Ovation of the Seas
We had several issues in this trip but the ones that really worth a review are the food and the shore excursions. This was by far the worst food I've ever experienced on a ship, it's not only way below RCCL standards, but it's below any cruise line standards as well. This was beyond low quality, it's border line with a lack of respect for the passengers, I could not even relate the food to a dollar general type of cruise line, because in those cruise lines I recall having better food than here. The venue is big with lots of buffets but don't let it fool you: they are all repeated, almost no variety, they all have mostly the same. The quality was the worst I've ever tried (see the pic I've attached of what it was supposed to be chicken soup). They only offered 2 kinds of totally overcooked pasta during a 12 night cruise with the cheapest and more common sauces ever (cream sauce and tomato sauce. I've never saw a true pesto sauce or any of the hundreds sauces available for pasta). This remind me more of a college cafeteria than being on a cruise. The food was ALWAYS cold. The rice was so overcooked that seemed mashed potatoes, the "steaks"....that was the fun part. It was hard to figure out if it was steak or slices of a cold cut. It was funny when the chef would ask you "how would you like your steak, rare, medium or well done Madam?". There's no way to choose in a 1/8 of an inch slice of beef!. We went to the assigned restaurants, chef's table which is supposed to be of a higher standard and we also went to the specialties restaurants and they were all so but so disappointing!!!!!!!! everybody on the ship commented on this . I've complained during the trip, I got to talk to someone that was supposed to be the restaurant manager around day 5 but nothing happened. On the last day of the trip I complained again, the girl at the front desk called the manager and he was busy but he was supposed to reach out to me at some point during the evening which never happened. In regards to the shore excursions...we have arranged a lot of private tours for our different stops and then we've realized (thanks to other passengers because the information was kind of difficult to find around and if you don't stuck in your room watching the videos forget it), that RCCL had arranged disembarkation/check out times at the ports according to our decks (no reason explained) and by the time we were supposed to be out it was gonna be 12.50 pm plus immigration time, would have taken out around 1.30 or 2.00 pm!!!!!! BUT we were supposed to be back to the ship around 7.00pm and the trip to the center of the city from the port took around 2 hours each way...so tell me how on earth could we make it? we needed to cancel our pre-arranged tours and book with RCCL because if we did that, we would be granted earlier check out on ports....such a scam I have never expected this from RCCL. The worst thing, on top of that, was that the shore excursions they offered were terrible, I believe they chose the worst and cheapest suppliers in every port without even screening them. In one of the cities we stopped at, the "guide" didn't even know that some palaces were closed on Tuesdays (the day we stopped there). We let her know and she said "oh I never heard that, if you want to go let me know and I will check if it's open or not". Last, but not least, I'd like to mention that it's unacceptable that such a huge ship with over 5000 passengers don't have at least band aids, Advil and Pepto Bismol or those basic OTC meds for sale. I don't expect a boutique type of drugstore, but at least the very basic ones considering it's a long trip with terrible food. All cruise lines I've been to sell these. I've been told band aids could be requested from the front desk, but due to the bad experience of all passengers, you'd have waiting lines of at least an hour regardless of the time of the day. Who would want to wait an hour to ask for a band aid??? This is another thing I find totally abnormal, seeing people complaining all the time and standing for hours in the line. We have another cruise booked with RCCL for December but after this experience we're considering to cancel it.

Terrible experience and worst food ever

Ovation of the Seas Cruise Review by chiche72

4 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: April 2018
  • Destination: Asia
We had several issues in this trip but the ones that really worth a review are the food and the shore excursions. This was by far the worst food I've ever experienced on a ship, it's not only way below RCCL standards, but it's below any cruise line standards as well. This was beyond low quality, it's border line with a lack of respect for the passengers, I could not even relate the food to a dollar general type of cruise line, because in those cruise lines I recall having better food than here. The venue is big with lots of buffets but don't let it fool you: they are all repeated, almost no variety, they all have mostly the same. The quality was the worst I've ever tried (see the pic I've attached of what it was supposed to be chicken soup). They only offered 2 kinds of totally overcooked pasta during a 12 night cruise with the cheapest and more common sauces ever (cream sauce and tomato sauce. I've never saw a true pesto sauce or any of the hundreds sauces available for pasta). This remind me more of a college cafeteria than being on a cruise. The food was ALWAYS cold. The rice was so overcooked that seemed mashed potatoes, the "steaks"....that was the fun part. It was hard to figure out if it was steak or slices of a cold cut. It was funny when the chef would ask you "how would you like your steak, rare, medium or well done Madam?". There's no way to choose in a 1/8 of an inch slice of beef!. We went to the assigned restaurants, chef's table which is supposed to be of a higher standard and we also went to the specialties restaurants and they were all so but so disappointing!!!!!!!! everybody on the ship commented on this . I've complained during the trip, I got to talk to someone that was supposed to be the restaurant manager around day 5 but nothing happened. On the last day of the trip I complained again, the girl at the front desk called the manager and he was busy but he was supposed to reach out to me at some point during the evening which never happened.

In regards to the shore excursions...we have arranged a lot of private tours for our different stops and then we've realized (thanks to other passengers because the information was kind of difficult to find around and if you don't stuck in your room watching the videos forget it), that RCCL had arranged disembarkation/check out times at the ports according to our decks (no reason explained) and by the time we were supposed to be out it was gonna be 12.50 pm plus immigration time, would have taken out around 1.30 or 2.00 pm!!!!!! BUT we were supposed to be back to the ship around 7.00pm and the trip to the center of the city from the port took around 2 hours each way...so tell me how on earth could we make it? we needed to cancel our pre-arranged tours and book with RCCL because if we did that, we would be granted earlier check out on ports....such a scam I have never expected this from RCCL. The worst thing, on top of that, was that the shore excursions they offered were terrible, I believe they chose the worst and cheapest suppliers in every port without even screening them. In one of the cities we stopped at, the "guide" didn't even know that some palaces were closed on Tuesdays (the day we stopped there). We let her know and she said "oh I never heard that, if you want to go let me know and I will check if it's open or not".

Last, but not least, I'd like to mention that it's unacceptable that such a huge ship with over 5000 passengers don't have at least band aids, Advil and Pepto Bismol or those basic OTC meds for sale. I don't expect a boutique type of drugstore, but at least the very basic ones considering it's a long trip with terrible food. All cruise lines I've been to sell these. I've been told band aids could be requested from the front desk, but due to the bad experience of all passengers, you'd have waiting lines of at least an hour regardless of the time of the day. Who would want to wait an hour to ask for a band aid??? This is another thing I find totally abnormal, seeing people complaining all the time and standing for hours in the line.

We have another cruise booked with RCCL for December but after this experience we're considering to cancel it.
chiche72’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Shore Excursions
Service
Onboard Experience
Free Price Drop Alerts
Get Royal Caribbean Ovation of the Seas price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email

Cabin Review

Cabin 6672
Cabin was good, spacious with good storage facilities.
  Ovation of the Seas Deck Plans