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This was our first cruise and we traveled with our two kids, 14 and 9 years old. This ship bills itself as family friendly but it’s really not. It has four swimming areas that are all very small with one that’s adult-only. We didn’t use the kids clubs because I’m not comfortable dropping my youngest off with strangers. The zip lines were closed due to high wind except for the last day, and the line was extremely long. There is very little communication between you and the staff. We encountered multiple issues that led to my waiting in very long customer service lines. We booked an excursion to Atlantis in the Bahamas and that was our biggest mistake. When we stepped off the ship we learned that Atlantis was a cashless island. We had only carried cash with us on every excursion up until then because we were concerned about identify theft. So, we were on a day long excursion with no way to buy lunch or drinks or souvenirs. We decided to cut that one short and headed back to the shop after just a few hours. This would have been a great excursion if the crew would have just told us that we needed to take our credit card. That wasn’t the only excursion issue. With the ship docking at 9:00 and leaving at 3:30, there just isn’t enough time to drive to the excursion, participate and then shop before getting back onboard. It’s jist all too rushed. I was also disappointed by the food, even in the “formal” dining room. I expected the buffets to be cafeteria food but not the dining room. It wa exactly the same cafeteria style food, only served on nicer plates. Being my first cruise, I don’t have anything to compare but this was essentially a floating bar. I have never seen so many bars packed into one area. I guess, if you aren’t vacationing with kids and you’re looking for a place to relax with a drink in your hand then this would be perfect for you. Well, except for the mediocre food and extremely rough ride. Again, I have no basis for comparison but I didn’t not expect to feel so much movement on the ship. It seemed to bounce with every wave. I really wouldn’t recommend it.

First Time Cruise, Bad Experience

MSC Seaside Cruise Review by cedney25

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2018
  • Destination: Eastern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Fantastica Outside Stateroom
This was our first cruise and we traveled with our two kids, 14 and 9 years old. This ship bills itself as family friendly but it’s really not. It has four swimming areas that are all very small with one that’s adult-only. We didn’t use the kids clubs because I’m not comfortable dropping my youngest off with strangers. The zip lines were closed due to high wind except for the last day, and the line was extremely long.

There is very little communication between you and the staff. We encountered multiple issues that led to my waiting in very long customer service lines.

We booked an excursion to Atlantis in the Bahamas and that was our biggest mistake. When we stepped off the ship we learned that Atlantis was a cashless island. We had only carried cash with us on every excursion up until then because we were concerned about identify theft. So, we were on a day long excursion with no way to buy lunch or drinks or souvenirs. We decided to cut that one short and headed back to the shop after just a few hours. This would have been a great excursion if the crew would have just told us that we needed to take our credit card.

That wasn’t the only excursion issue. With the ship docking at 9:00 and leaving at 3:30, there just isn’t enough time to drive to the excursion, participate and then shop before getting back onboard. It’s jist all too rushed.

I was also disappointed by the food, even in the “formal” dining room. I expected the buffets to be cafeteria food but not the dining room. It wa exactly the same cafeteria style food, only served on nicer plates.

Being my first cruise, I don’t have anything to compare but this was essentially a floating bar. I have never seen so many bars packed into one area. I guess, if you aren’t vacationing with kids and you’re looking for a place to relax with a drink in your hand then this would be perfect for you. Well, except for the mediocre food and extremely rough ride. Again, I have no basis for comparison but I didn’t not expect to feel so much movement on the ship. It seemed to bounce with every wave.

I really wouldn’t recommend it.
cedney25’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Ages 13 to 15
Service
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Cabin Review

Fantastica Outside Stateroom
Cabin O2
This was as small as I expected it to be but the balcony made it bearable. The beds were comfy.
Cape Cod Deck Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Nassau
    Please know that Paradise Island is cash-less. You will have to take a credit card to buy anything while there.
    I was very comfortable in Nassau. They were having a huge street parade. While on the way back from Atlantis, our driver told us that a party bus had lost control and drove into the crowd. Several people were killed. I couldn’t wait to get back on the ship.
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  • St. Maarten
    This was absolutely frightening. It was advertised as a semi-submerged ship with an underwater viewing area. What we got was a boat the size of a medium pontoon boat with a gasoline engine. They took us down to the hull that was only as wide as shoulder length, with small rectangle windows. The seats we’re mounted onto the walls and when lowered, there was no way to walk from the front to the back. My daughter, who is not claustrophobic, had a panic attack around 20 minutes after descending. I had to climb over people just to get back to the surface. Please don’t spend your money on this death trap. Shame on the cruise line for offering this as a vetted excursion.
    View All 13,176 St. Maarten Cruise Port Reviews
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