We chose this Cruise for the Itinerary and because we had previously had 3 Good Cruises with MSC.
We took a North Europe cruise on the MSC PREZIOSA from Souhampton. The following review is, I feel, very fair with the Pros AND Cons.
We arrived at the Terminal to face a queue of “well-over” an hour – there was one security entrance – BUT people returning from a trip ashore were “filtered” into our queue – limiting us to 6 or so people every 5 minutes – WHAT A WELCOME !
CABIN – Our Inside cabin was adequate and the attendant was very diligent with the cleanliness and linen changes.
DINING – We were VERY LUCKY – our 1st sitting was at a table for 6 – with 2 great couples – with whom we had “a lorra laughs” ! The food was good but not great. There are now less courses that on our previous 3 MSC cruises - 3 effectiive courses – and our waiters were good. Not as friendly as on many other cruises and at times there were apologies because “this galley was having problems” !!
The buffet restaurant was huge with a good selection – BUT again the staff were very “clinical” – OK but distant – not-too-friendly – and there were often more staff selling “drinks packages” than clearing off – with head waiters “mucking in”.
ENTERTAINMENT – the absolute “pits” – many, many people complained about the “very inferior” shows. Rubbish ventriloquist, lady climbing the curtain, Paul McCartney impressionist on 3 consecutive nights, etc. etc. – Come back TUI and P & O with your much better quality shows !!
TOPSIDE – The pools were very clean and there were lots of sun-loungers.
ACCESSIBILITY – The lifts at many times were GREATLY INDEQUATE for the 4000 or so passengers – especially for the unfortunate ones with wheelchairs or walkers – sometimes “almost killed” in the rush to get in.
THERE WAS SCOPE TO HAVE A SPECIFIC LIFT DEDICATED TO THEM ????
DRINKS PRICES – The “packages” seemed to be a bit of a con - 29 Eurosper person per night – 870 Euros for 2. The 6 Euro LIMIT per drink is very low ($15 0n NCL). AND IF YOU SPENT MORE – IT WAS THE WHOLE PRICE !!! We went “pay-as-you-go” and still managed sufficient drinks.
GOING ASHORE – In WW2 the German navy had “Q” ships – I think MSC were taking on the challenge with “QUEUE SHIPS” !! There were massive queues at several ports for disembarkation AND embarkation – TOTALLY DISORGANISED – with dozens queue-jumping at every opportunity – A VERY ANNOYING EXPERIENCE !!!!
When the ship is so huge – WHY NOT CREATE A COUPLE MORE GANGWAYS AND SECURITY SCANNERS TO LIGHTEN THE LOAD ???
Having sailed on over 20 ships with 9 different lines – THIS WAS FAR AND AWAY OUR WORST EXPERIENCE !!!!!!!!!
MSC seemed to rank EUROS, EUROS, EUROS’s over customer satisfaction. Charges for “shuttles to town” were excessive – when the distances were walkable (even to 70+ year olds). A constant sell for “drinks packages”, spa treatments, fine-dining, etc.
The size of around 4000 passengers does not help – we have been on ships from 650 passengers to 3000+ - BUT HAVE ALWAYS HAD A REALLY ENJOYABLE EXPERIENCE.
Overall - for what we paid - it was “good value for money” !! BUT I SUPPOSE YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR !!!!!!
COME ON MSC – GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER !!!!!
Adequately sized - having had many Inside Cabins before - the attendant was VERY attentive, Nothing to complain about.