Atlas Cruise Greece to Portugal
1. Flights and boarding the ship: Atlas bought the very cheapest airline tickets they could. (Many cruise lines at this price point fly you business class) We were told we could not even select seats until 24 hrs before the flight. For the flight from DFW to JFK, we were stuck at the back of the bus, but at least in seats with aisle access. For the long haul between JFK and Athens we were stuck with seats in the middle of the four seat section without aisle access for 9.5 hours. We arrived in Athens around 9 AM and were picked up as promised. We arrived at the dock at approx. 10 AM and had to sit out in the heat on metal benches, not even in the terminal, where it was at least air conditioned. We did have shade at least. We had to wait until the medical staff from the ship appeared, (around 12:30) to administer covid tests. It was suggested that we go an explore while we waited, but we were very tired after an uncomfortable airplane flight and 18 hours of travel. After having covid tests administered, we we allowed into the terminal, but still had to stay in place until about 2:00 PM. For people who had been traveling for almost 18 hours this was almost unbearable then to have to wait another 4 to 5 hours to board. Before entering the terminal we were only offered a bottle of warm water. In the terminal a bottle of cold water was offered. Obviously they needed to have a way of taking care of their passengers who are boarding and very tired from long flights.
Debarkation went smoothly, and we were delivered to our hotel in Lisbon as promised. However, when we asked the ship’s front desk if transportation was going to be provided from the hotel to the airport for our flight home, instead of checking for us they told me to check with Atlas myself. Since my experience with Atlas was overall negative, I checked with my travel agent instead and let her deal with Atlas. The return trip started off with our being at the very back of the plane against the bulkhead where there was very little room and the seats would not recline at all which was extremely uncomfortable to my wife who has 2 bars and twenty screws in her back. The trip from Heathrow to DFW was better because the plane was ⅔ empty.