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Marella Spirit Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
365 Reviews

Be careful and consider booking

Marella Spirit Cruise Review by Radka Kollarova

10 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jul 2018
  • Destination: the Western Mediterranean

We have been on Marella Spirit/cruise called Spirit of Iberia/TUI 1-8 July

Oh well, where to start. This is not my first cruise but first European one...

The boat is extremely old.. No refurbishment works being done at all. I booked this cruise trip online on TUI website, called Spirit of Iberia on Marella Spirit boat. There was an option to choose Full board or All inclusive package. Me and my husband went for all inclusive package worth £360 extra. On our first day we decided to have some drinks after dinner. I ordered rum and coke and my husband pint of beer. This was the worst two drinks you can imagine, really strong smell of some cheap alcohol and coke without bubbles. I got charged for coke...I felt a bit sick after rum and asked for sparkling water. I got charged for sparkling water as well. Beer was totally disgusting like a warm lemonade so my husband asked for bottled beer and again, we got charged for it. Okay so what are we going to drink for £360 then... Extra charge for all drinks.... still water extra charge, all inclusive package and still, sparkling water and coke are considered as premium drinks? Okay let's be honest, everywhere you book AI you don't have best drinks ever and not all are included but still and sparkling water and coke? Actually there is nothing in all inclusive package and the whole package is absolute lie! That's why on TUI website you find no information about all inclusive only few words saying literally nothing.

You can only drink some "draught beer" which is, trust me not a beer for sure and some water with black sirup (they call it coke with no bubbles) I just want to say, we do travel a lot, we are not those kind of guys complaining about everything but this is something what we really experienced for the first time and don't want to leave it just like that because this is total scam. We met the same people complaining about the same stuff. TUI should be extremely embarrassed about how they treat guests and how they lie to them. It is a total rip off.

We decided to call TUI, spent more than hour waiting on the line... We were told to discuss the whole situation at the reception desk because they can't deal with it online. We said that we want to pay for our drinks - as we don't drink anything from all inclusive package because all inclusive does not exist and would like to get refund of £360 and pay our own drinks on board. I mean for coke, juice, normal beer and water, standard rum etc. Just simply to be switched to full board basis from all inclusive one and pay in cash for drinks because we never reach £360 and there is nothing normal in the package. The attitude was very bad. They simply lied to us and we spent 4 days asking to speak with higher customer service representatives but they refused saying we had a special discount on our trip. We went to reception desk multiple times.

I would like to tell all the potential clients, there is a fake discount on every TUI offer. You book for example cruise for two people for £2000 then they say you are special couple and official amount would be nearly £2500 and all this kind of stuff you can imagine just to cover your eyes. Then you can choose full board or all inclusive board basis. If you decide to go for All inclusive for 2 people is something over £360...then you get nothing, there is nothing included as mentioned - water still and sparkling, coke etc. Is all considered as premium drinks that you have to pay for. The rest of drinks is the lowest quality you can imagine.

They don't want to discuss anything with you, all extremely rude and unprofessional attitude. We had three or four different meetings with guest relations manager, some other customer service representatives but it went nowhere they simply don't care and behave very rude. They ignore your questions, comments, everything. We have never ever experienced this kind of behavior with any other holiday provider.

Food - very low quality, you get very disappointed as well. English Breakfast that's what you get every day nothing else. Then some cheap cereals and you can forget about something decent. It's like a hospital at the end of the world. Then some left overs from dinner like fish for breakfast, thank you very much.

There is one more thing to say about this cruise and the company. We did not have any security briefing. There was one planned at 9:45pm first night. Over 300 people were sitting at the main restaurant listening music and drinking, no information provided about this cruise and security stuff. They simply never mentioned anything anymore. Again we met lots of people on board and we all discussed exactly the same issues starting with drinks, food, security and attitude of some receptionists and guest relations representatives. This cruise is total mess the only nice thing is really nice waiters working on board, really lovely and hard working people.

It is an absolute joke and you should consider booking this trip with TUI. To be honest I think this cruise is mainly focused on older generation (over 60 and 70) which I believe it's harder for them to fight with these people and look for other options.

Definitely very bad travel experience and our worst one so far.


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Radka Kollarova
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