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Celebrity Equinox Review

4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating
2184 reviews
91 Awards

Working Out the COVID Kinks

Review for Celebrity Equinox to the Eastern Caribbean
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NYCruiser81
2-5 Cruises • Age 50s

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Sail Date: Jul 2021
Cabin:
Traveled with children

I'm writing this review to give people a sense for what the ship is like post-COVID. Full disclosure, I am a New Yorker, and conservative with regard to how I've lived during this pandemic. I had been told that the ship would be at 35% capacity and 100% vaccinated. When I boarded the ship I was made aware of the fact that it was closer to 60% of capacity, and that about 5% were unvaccinated (children under 12).

The staff were very excited to be back, and the enthusiasm was obvious. The staff that were on the ship were very customer service focused and had a positive attitude. There were however a couple problems. First, they were staffed at about 60% of capacity to match the reduced guest count. That was a mistake. There are some functions that are required no matter the capacity, and it was quite obvious that they were short staffed. Besides the staff voicing it themselves, the wait time in the restaurant was consistently 1-1.5 hours. In the buffet there was no pasta bar, or any kind of "made to order" option because the staff weren't available to do so. Similarly, distancing at meals was challenging because sections of the restaurants were closed to accommodate the lower guest count/lower staff. Additionally, about 20% of the staff (including the wait staff) were wearing their masks below their noses. While they were all vaccinated, it felt like if they aren't following the protocols when they are customer facing, what is happening behind the scenes?

The ports were also working out the kinks. All of the ports were highly focused on not having the locals get COVID from the tourists, and were "podding" people. It was understandable, but created backlogs, delays, and confusion.

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