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Insignia Review

4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating
204 reviews
1 Award

Cruising with Covid the good, the bad and the ugly.

Review for Insignia to the Panama Canal & Central America
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cruiser 009
10+ Cruises • Age 70s

Rating by category

Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation

Additional details

Sail Date: Dec 2021

Having not cruised for almost 2 years we decided to book 2 cruises for the last part of 2021. The first cruise on the celebrity Apex from Athens to Miami went well. We had to wear masks most of the time and tours were mostly on Celebrity controlled tours. All passengers and crew were vaccinated, and they tested us several times during the cruise. The ship made all the schedule ports, and the health protocols were adhered to. Several weeks later we boarded our flight from Las Vegas to Miami to go on The Oceania Insignia from Miami to Los Angeles. This was our 5th cruise out of 20 plus cruises on Oceania. The 4 previous cruises we enjoyed the splendid food and outstanding service. That was not to be on this cruise. We choose this cruise because it was stopping at many ports, we had not been to THAT ALSO WAS NOT TO BE. We had a balcony room concierge level on the 7th deck. The ship was redecorated in 2018 so our room was very nice although the bathrooms are very small on the R class ships. Just before the cruise Oceania switched Grand Cayman to a short stop in Key west. Key West is a nice stop for a couple of hours. This cruise was the first leg of 180 day cruise around the world. Leaving Key West we spent the next 2 and half days at sea before arriving at Cartagena Columbia on Christmas day. The first few nights we ate the main dining room and while the staff was extremely nice and very apologetic the food was not up to past cruises and several times it was served at room temperature. Cartagena we were able to get a car and tour by ourselves, while we enjoyed doing sightseeing on our own most things were closed for Christmas. Upon returning to the ship we got word that they were canceling stops in Acapulco and Cabo San Lucus, but they were reinstating San Diego. We also found out that we had passengers on board that had Covid. According to the crew director it was only 2 and they were quarantined about 7 cabins down the hall from our cabin. MEANWHILE NO TESTING WAS DONE. Then they handed out a cruise review sheet after only 4 days which I gladly filled out. The cruise was not going well and because of the elimination of the Mexican Ports then received many complaints they gave us $500. ship board credit and $1,000.00 future cruise credit. The cruise continued with the transit of the Panama Canal and more days at sea before arriving at Punta Arenas Costa Rica. Sleepy little town that we spent a half hour walking around, not much there. On to Guatemala where we were going to a Coffee farm Not!! Oceania announced we were going to spend the next 6 days traveling to San Diego. Meanwhile more cabins were being quarantined and crew were disappearing. Staffing in Housekeeping and the restaurants was getting worse and worse and then the musicians disappeared. STILL NO TESTING! Food in all the restaurants was not up to par and still coming out cold. The air conditioning in our cabin was blowing full blast from the time we boarded the repair people could not fix it for 10 days. Our friends cabin next door was very hot for the first 6 days, the ship needed some work even though it was idle for 20 months. By the time we got to San Diego we had spent 11 days at sea, the food and service got worse, many cabins were in quarantine and half the crew was missing. STILL NO TESTING. We arrived in Las Angeles the next day and they offered us to stay overnight on the ship needless to say we could not wait to get off the ship. The ship was not ready to cruise, and the health protocols were not adequate. NCL Regent and Oceania have cancelled many cruises during and after this cruise which also have been cancelled. My wife and I feel we wasted almost $12,000.

Cabin Review

Port Reviews

Cartagena (Spain)

Nice City to visit but not on Xmas.

5 Helpful Votes
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