Independence of the Seas Cruise Review by sblahars
- Sail Date: December 2018
- Destination: Western Caribbean
- Cabin Type: Ocean View Balcony
As far as everything else goes, we never had a problem getting seats at the shows. We'd show up maybe 15-20 minutes early, but in reality, we could've arrived 5 minutes early and still been able to find seats. With a few rare exceptions, the cafe promenade, sorrentos pizza, the soft serve ice cream were never terribly busy.
I DID think that the tables in the main dining room were a bit more cramped than what I recall. It was rather difficult at times just to get out of the seat and through the exit. But the service was very good. The ship was in very good shape. The new water slides were great. We only went to them on the first sea day, about 30 minutes after it opened. We had no wait the first few times, then maybe 5 minutes or so a bit later. My kids loved the splash pad and pool. They also really like Adventure Ocean. They even liked it better than the kids program on the Disney Dream.
I read many reviews complaining about bar service being bad, I can't comment because I don't drink, so it was a non issue for me. But I don't remember seeing huge lines of people at any of the bars that I would walk by.
If I had to have a criticism, it would be that I was a bit disappointed in the dinner menus. There wasn't as much exotic-ish type things to try. Understand that I'm a chili's, applebees, famous dave's, coney island type of person, so it doesn't take much for it to be exotic to me. But even still, compared to other cruises, I was a bit let down. They had prime rib 2 nights, and turkey dinner two nights. Funny thing about the turkey, we noticed that the cranberry sauce still had the ridges from the can on the side.
Disembarking was a nightmare. The government shutdown resulted in very few customs and immigration agents, we didn't get off the ship until probably 10am, and had to wait another hour to get out of the actual building. It was really terrible. Not the cruise line's fault, but left a really bad taste. Luckily Fort Lauderdale airport is a 5-10 minute drive, so we made our 12:55pm flight, but it was close. We disembarked through the same terminal in the summer of 2016 of the Oasis with very little problem, so I was really surprised at the mess this was.
To recap, first holiday cruise, was really nervous about massive hoards of humanity, and while that was the case, the crew did a really good job of accommodating the people. I would definitely consider doing it again.
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