MSC Magnifica Cruise Review by sveg_adis
- Sail Date: October 2011
- Destination: Eastern Mediterranean
The issue is with the administration they are completely hopeless!
The information provided pre-cruise isn't always correct ie we were told to be there at 2pm for boarding, but boarding had commenced hours before that. They don't provide anything useful to assist you in actually getting to the cruise (like there's a train from Venice) & not a mention of the 15 walk from the port entrance to the actual embarkation point, with all your luggage.
We'd pre-booked tours via our agent, one of them they cancelled, but they couldn't reimburse us for it on the ship - we have to go back to our travel agent to get a refund. Another they had ceased running but as we chose another tour of greater value they could charge us the difference on the ship, but this was more accidental than planned as they'd not mentioned this before we chose the other tour. The communication around both of these was also contradictory and confusing, one letter (shoved under the cabin door) informed us of the cancellation, another just said to visit the tour desk.
In addition the disembarkation process is a disaster. We had to be out of the cabin by 7.30 for a scheduled 9.30 departure. There was fog in Venice so we didn't actually reach port until 12.30. So from around 8.30 to 12.30 we were supposed to sit in our designated areas, during this time we were not offered food or drink and only 1 staff member came in for around 5 minutes to offer any information.
Due to the delay there were many passengers (us included) who were close to missing ongoing flight connections, but the staff were unable or unwilling to assist in either organising internet access so flights could be re-booked, or fast tracking the affected passengers disembarkation. For those that had missed flights they couldn't even provide written evidence of the delay for claiming on travel insurance.
We managed to get off the boat but were held up at the dock for 2.5hrs waiting for our luggage as they were unable to unload the luggage any faster as it had to be done according to their list (so this must be the normal disembarkation waiting time), even though the luggage was visibly on the dockside on luggage trolleys.
Given that our luggage was around half way through their list, the passengers with luggage at the end of the list probably waited 4 hours for their luggage to be available.
We couldn't recommend this cruiseline after the terrible disembarkation process, which is a shame as many other features are very good.
They are totally unable to cope with any problems, issues that may arise such as the late docking or changes to tours (even when they make the changes).