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• We sailed on the MSC Seaside, leaving Miami February 23rd 2019, returning to Miami March 2nd, 2019. There were 6 adults and two 10-year old children in our group. • Upon first arriving on the ship, there were tables for registering for kids club, or so we thought. The confusion was clearly not isolated to just our family as most families with children were crowding the tables. The table placement created a huge bottleneck of all cruise guests because it was the first thing you encountered, IMMEDIATELY upon boarding. Then we discovered that we have to go to the 18th floor to actually register for kids club and even that we couldn’t do until 2pm. • The few times we actually dropped our 10 year old son at the kids club, they watched movies and played indoors. He was old enough to check himself out but not old enough for the kids club staff to take them to the Jungle Pool or other kid-friendly activities? I assumed that’s why the kid-themed pools/activities were located on the same floor? • Along those same lines, he could check himself out of kids club but not get a wrist band to get into our cabin because he was under 12. Poorly thought out. • Our cabins weren’t ready for several hours forcing us to wander around the ship with carry-on items. It’s hard to explore (and for that matter, relax) when you’re forced to carry around your family’s small luggage. Even more troubling is the amount of time it took us to get a drink during our initial embarkation. The bar at the Atrium was the first place the guests naturally flowed into and there were maybe 3 bartenders on duty? I’m looking for my first drink to kick off my week-long vacation and I have to wait to flag someone down? That whole area should’ve been filled with staff ready and willing to provide drinks. • We also waited another 30 minutes in the Customer Service line just to get wrist bands. Another 30 minutes I wasted on my vacation waiting in line for another poorly staffed area. At least the employees were helpful and friendly when we actually arrived at the counter. • There was an extreme lack of trash cans all over the ship. We can only assume this was for appearances but is insanely impractical. • The main cabin elevators were another giant waste of our time. We felt like we were constantly waiting for one, they were clearly not programmed properly. • There were not nearly enough restrooms near high traffic areas, i.e. pools, buffets, theater. As a woman, I expect to wait in line at times but not on a cruise. Even then, there were only two stalls in most of the restrooms. At the pool on deck 16, there are seats for hundreds of people but only 2 bathroom stalls in the ladies room? Many women had their children with them which made a tiny bathroom even more ridiculous. Poor planning for a family friendly ship. • One of our biggest complaints was the constant harassment for signing up for the dinner packages. Those poor staff members were EVERYWHERE. Everywhere we went, the pool, the buffets, the bars, the sitting areas, we were harassed about it, up until the last day of our trip. We were asked numerous times even while sitting in one location for a half hour. I hate to be rude because the staff was doing their job but this is just an unacceptable business practice. I don’t want a sales pitch every time I sit down for a meal or a drink. To our family, it’s the equivalent of a traveling salesman ringing our doorbell at dinner time. • Our absolute biggest complaint and the main reason we will NEVER take another MSC cruise was the service. I estimate I wasted about 8 hours cumulatively waiting at a bar to get a drink which ultimately leads me to this dismal review of MSC cruise overall. If there is one underlying theme about my whole review, it’s that YOU NEED DOUBLE THE STAFF at the very least. Deck 16 has a huge pool and movie screen, many of the family friendly daytime activities took place here. The bar to support that area should have been 3 times the size. • Deck 7 was the other incredibly disappointing area. Since the pool was adults only, that bar should have been at least 3 times the size. I might have been able to overlook the size if it was staffed properly. At all of the bars, it seemed that half of the items the staff needed to retrieve were “in the back” or they didn’t have it close at hand. • Dinner at the Seashore restaurant every evening was painful and incredibly inefficient. The two waiters we had were responsible for getting our drinks and food as well as waiting on how many other tables. Numerous evenings they took the drink orders of the half the table and then didn’t return to take the drink orders for the other half until the entrees were served. Our party included two 10-year old boys so it was frustrating when we couldn’t even get a refill of water. We were always rushing to finish our food because it took so long for the courses to come out and we were never eating the same course at the same time as others at our table. The staff was friendly but by the second night, it was hard not to take our frustrations of poor and inefficient service out on them. • Our first night aboard, my husband planned to go to the Sports Bar on level 8 and watch an ice hockey game. He was shocked to learn that they only carry ESPN 1 and 2. A sports bar that only carries two sports channels? Another giant disappointment. • The MSC for Me app stopped working two days before we disembarked which made it hard to see the daily agenda. We relied on it during the week and then suddenly it wasn’t there. • We were so disappointed overall, we requested our daily service charges be removed. I rarely write reviews but since all of the items outlined above were a common theme among other guests we met, I wanted to make sure others are aware so you can remedy some of these complaints for future guests. I wish I could get a partial refund for the amount of time wasted, poor service, and inefficiencies. The ship was beautiful and the schedule was prompt. Our particular hall staff was incredibly kind and helpful, his name was Andres and he was probably the most engaged staff member we met.

Be prepared to wait to get your drinks from the absent and bored staff!

MSC Seaside Cruise Review by tbowser

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: February 2019
  • Destination: Western Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Fantastica Outside Stateroom
• We sailed on the MSC Seaside, leaving Miami February 23rd 2019, returning to Miami March 2nd, 2019. There were 6 adults and two 10-year old children in our group.

• Upon first arriving on the ship, there were tables for registering for kids club, or so we thought. The confusion was clearly not isolated to just our family as most families with children were crowding the tables. The table placement created a huge bottleneck of all cruise guests because it was the first thing you encountered, IMMEDIATELY upon boarding. Then we discovered that we have to go to the 18th floor to actually register for kids club and even that we couldn’t do until 2pm.

• The few times we actually dropped our 10 year old son at the kids club, they watched movies and played indoors. He was old enough to check himself out but not old enough for the kids club staff to take them to the Jungle Pool or other kid-friendly activities? I assumed that’s why the kid-themed pools/activities were located on the same floor?

• Along those same lines, he could check himself out of kids club but not get a wrist band to get into our cabin because he was under 12. Poorly thought out.

• Our cabins weren’t ready for several hours forcing us to wander around the ship with carry-on items. It’s hard to explore (and for that matter, relax) when you’re forced to carry around your family’s small luggage. Even more troubling is the amount of time it took us to get a drink during our initial embarkation. The bar at the Atrium was the first place the guests naturally flowed into and there were maybe 3 bartenders on duty? I’m looking for my first drink to kick off my week-long vacation and I have to wait to flag someone down? That whole area should’ve been filled with staff ready and willing to provide drinks.

• We also waited another 30 minutes in the Customer Service line just to get wrist bands. Another 30 minutes I wasted on my vacation waiting in line for another poorly staffed area. At least the employees were helpful and friendly when we actually arrived at the counter.

• There was an extreme lack of trash cans all over the ship. We can only assume this was for appearances but is insanely impractical.

• The main cabin elevators were another giant waste of our time. We felt like we were constantly waiting for one, they were clearly not programmed properly.

• There were not nearly enough restrooms near high traffic areas, i.e. pools, buffets, theater. As a woman, I expect to wait in line at times but not on a cruise. Even then, there were only two stalls in most of the restrooms. At the pool on deck 16, there are seats for hundreds of people but only 2 bathroom stalls in the ladies room? Many women had their children with them which made a tiny bathroom even more ridiculous. Poor planning for a family friendly ship.

• One of our biggest complaints was the constant harassment for signing up for the dinner packages. Those poor staff members were EVERYWHERE. Everywhere we went, the pool, the buffets, the bars, the sitting areas, we were harassed about it, up until the last day of our trip. We were asked numerous times even while sitting in one location for a half hour. I hate to be rude because the staff was doing their job but this is just an unacceptable business practice. I don’t want a sales pitch every time I sit down for a meal or a drink. To our family, it’s the equivalent of a traveling salesman ringing our doorbell at dinner time.

• Our absolute biggest complaint and the main reason we will NEVER take another MSC cruise was the service. I estimate I wasted about 8 hours cumulatively waiting at a bar to get a drink which ultimately leads me to this dismal review of MSC cruise overall. If there is one underlying theme about my whole review, it’s that YOU NEED DOUBLE THE STAFF at the very least. Deck 16 has a huge pool and movie screen, many of the family friendly daytime activities took place here. The bar to support that area should have been 3 times the size.

• Deck 7 was the other incredibly disappointing area. Since the pool was adults only, that bar should have been at least 3 times the size. I might have been able to overlook the size if it was staffed properly. At all of the bars, it seemed that half of the items the staff needed to retrieve were “in the back” or they didn’t have it close at hand.

• Dinner at the Seashore restaurant every evening was painful and incredibly inefficient. The two waiters we had were responsible for getting our drinks and food as well as waiting on how many other tables. Numerous evenings they took the drink orders of the half the table and then didn’t return to take the drink orders for the other half until the entrees were served. Our party included two 10-year old boys so it was frustrating when we couldn’t even get a refill of water. We were always rushing to finish our food because it took so long for the courses to come out and we were never eating the same course at the same time as others at our table. The staff was friendly but by the second night, it was hard not to take our frustrations of poor and inefficient service out on them.

• Our first night aboard, my husband planned to go to the Sports Bar on level 8 and watch an ice hockey game. He was shocked to learn that they only carry ESPN 1 and 2. A sports bar that only carries two sports channels? Another giant disappointment.

• The MSC for Me app stopped working two days before we disembarked which made it hard to see the daily agenda. We relied on it during the week and then suddenly it wasn’t there.

• We were so disappointed overall, we requested our daily service charges be removed. I rarely write reviews but since all of the items outlined above were a common theme among other guests we met, I wanted to make sure others are aware so you can remedy some of these complaints for future guests. I wish I could get a partial refund for the amount of time wasted, poor service, and inefficiencies. The ship was beautiful and the schedule was prompt. Our particular hall staff was incredibly kind and helpful, his name was Andres and he was probably the most engaged staff member we met.
tbowser’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Ages 10 to 12
Service
Onboard Experience
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