A VERY EXPENSIVE CATTLE BOAT: MSC Musica Cruise Review by dennis smalley

MSC Musica 1
dennis smalley

Overall Member Rating


Sail Date: April 2010
Destination: Europe - Eastern Mediterranean
Embarkation: Venice
Please read this review for the sake of your own peace of mind and future holiday enjoyment .Let me be blunt, this ship MSC MUSICA should be renamed Sloop john B, as it's the worst ship I've ever been on. This was supposed to be a35th wedding anniversary celebration cruise for myself, my wife and our wedding bridesmaid. Things got off to a bad start when KLM lost my wife's luggage in Amsterdam which was not retrieved until the 5th day of a 7 day cruise.

The ship itself is well appointed. Nice lounges, public rooms and cabins. The problems simply begin and end with one thing. The way the ship is managed or should I say mismanaged. This was supposed to be a memorable trip. Now we will remember it for all the wrong reasons. We paid 1500 euros each for 1 week, so we had expectations. As you can imagine we had to deal with reception staff a lot due to our lost luggage problem. Reception on this ship is an utter shambles. Upon approach you will be confronted, at any time with More between 30-50 people who have no conception of the words queue or manners. Free for all pushing shoving and shouting is the order of the day and your heart just sinks at the prospect of achieving anything at all. Don't bother calling 99 for reception from your cabin. You will grow a beard waiting for them to answer. We had an engineer out 4 times in 3 days to repair our cabin safe which would simply not open It would seem the electronic number pads have worn out already. Staff, in general are unhelpful, sometimes rude and could not care for your well paid for needs. A lot of them have language difficulties which is very convenient for them if you have a problem.

Now, the really good part: To quote an American passenger who I was comparing complaints with, "this company will nickel and dime you in every way possible for everything possible, they are interested in nothing but making money at your expense and their greed, knows no bounds". You will be charged 49 euros per person per week service charge over and above the15% charge on every single shipboard transaction you make. We were unaware of this at time of booking. A high percentage of staff are from either third world or poor countries and I suspect are not well paid. So you are, in fact, subsidising staff wages. This little operation nets 125,000 euros per cruise equating to supposedly 127 euros in tips per crew member. Draw your own conclusions. Do you think all of this booty is passed on to staff? In my book tipping is discretionary, based on good service received. You must challenge this charge. At a meeting with the ship's only guest relations manager for 2550 people, we had our charge reduced to 60 euros for our whole party, so fight your corner.

MSC organised shore excursions are amongst the most expensive ever encountered, e.g. Athens, around 70 euros per person. Most trips can be arranged locally at a fraction of the cost. It was my under standing that it was MSC's responsibility to transport you to your ports of call, as listed, as part of the cost you have already paid. On 3 separate occasions we were charged a total 75 euros for very short bus journeys from ship to port of call. Prices ranged from 7-10 euros per person. This is an absolute disgrace.

On board, food is of very average standard. The buffet restaurant is a school canteen type nightmare. Crowded, very long queues, which people constantly try every dodge to bypass. Burgers, Hot dogs, bad pizza little invention or variety. Food on Tui cruise last year superior in every way. Last year, we had tea, coffee and essential water on tap 24/7.On this ship, you had to pay at all times even for a drink of water. Breakfast and afternoon snacks are the only times tea and water is available. Juices at breakfast time, I suspect, are watered down to within an inch of their lives. Nothing lived up to the expected standards for the sizeable amount of money paid.

This company will even stoop to charging you large amounts of money, if you are crazy enough, for photographs taken of you in your life jacket during lifeboat drill. We will never use MSC again. This ship is badly managed. It should be run by the Italians for Italians only, where they can push, shove, shout and bawl at each other to their hearts content as seems to be their modern cultural pastime.

THINK HARD BEFORE YOU BOOK. You will be stressed out for a week if you don't Thank you MSC for completely ruining my 35th wedding anniversary celebration cruise. The 3rd member in my party had never cruised before and after this dreadful experience will probably never cruise again. Most people have to save very hard for a trip like this. The disappointment of all aspects of this cruise will stay with me for a long time. All simply unacceptable but to whom can you appeal to do anything on your behalf. As usual no-one. Less

Published 04/30/10

Cabin review: 12059

Port and Shore Excursions

unable to get there due to greek national transport flash 1 day strike.piraeus nice to walk around in.lovely harbours.Much changed from our last visit.Has lost it's charmig quaintness.

first visit,surprisingly big.Not nearly enough time to appreciate anything other than town centre which was lovely.Two great forts to explore,again if you have time Dubrovnik,last port,jewel in the crown,utterly fantastic.Take 1hour boat ride from harbour front to get best viws of amazing historic walls.Walking the walls will cost you 10 euros.RIP OFF ALERT again.

Read 500 Corfu Reviews

Nothing much in town.4 rating is for olympia.Marvellous history and sightseeing.Arrange a local taxi trip.Much less expensive.MSC excursions are a joke.Outrageous prices and filled with tourist traps,where i suspect it's kickback time for tour guides.

fantastic island,A must see is oia village.25 minute trip on local bus will cost 1.40 euros. Compare that with msc excursion.Need i say more.Bad idea to do this island and mykonos on same day.Shore times on both way too short but this was true of every port.Shortest shore leave times i've ever encountered.

exciting,totally unique but extremely expensive.Whatever you do,don,t try to exchange money in venice.You will get ripped off big time.Rates are disgraceful.We exchanged £30 sterling on our last night when we were running short of money after prolonged stay due to volcano debacle.We received 21 euros in return.BEWARE,the italians have become a morally bankrupt nation and will show no scruples when taking your money.Watch out also for unreal service charges in restaurants all over venice.Initially,prices may look cheap but the service charges will leave you reeling.Don't take a single fare on the vaparetto at 6.50 it's not agood deal.Buy a multiple ride ticket depending on length of stay.Also visit burano island,enchanting brightly coloured houses and peace and quiet.

Read 1131 Venice Reviews

Compare Prices on MSC Musica Europe - Eastern Mediterranean Cruises

Read more MSC Musica cruise reviews >>
Read Cruise Critic’s MSC Musica Review >>

Compare Prices on MSC Musica Europe - Eastern Mediterranean Cruises

dennis smalley
Enrichment Activities
Family & Children
Fitness & Recreation
Onboard Experience
Public Rooms
Shore Excursions
Value for Money
Share feedback
Thank you!  Cruise Critic values your feedback.
How can we improve this page?
Skip X

See MSC Musica deals up to 82% off:

September Deals
MSC Musica 45% Loved It

7 Night Mediterranean Cruise
See all MSC Musica Deals >>