Holiday nearly ended up in Dry Dock.: MSC Orchestra Cruise Review by christine hopkins

MSC Orchestra 4
christine hopkins

Overall Member Rating

Holiday nearly ended up in Dry Dock.

Sail Date: October 2011
Destination: Europe - Western Mediterranean
Embarkation: Genoa
Hi there, got back on Sunday and had a really good time until our last day. Disembarkation was a nightmare. It appeared to us that once you had settled your bill and been given your embarkation instructions you were of no consequence.
The procedure is that you are given a colour and time to be at a certain place. We were warned that there would be no tanoy announcements so were prepared. We decided to wait on the pool deck for our time of 11am in the Shaker bar and made a move at just before 10.30am. We got to the bar and it was totally empty. There was a cleaner there and she told us that everyone had gone. Oh dear, panic. There were two other couples with us who had transfers to Milan the same as us. We were making our way quickly to the exit when an announcement was made that any remaining passengers should quickly disembark as the ship was about to leave. More panic!! By that time we were worried about the bus we were supposed to be catching. When we got off the ship our More luggage was not where it was supposed to be and had been moved. Eventually we found our cases and were directed to where the buses were. We were put on a very small bus as obviously the main transport had already left without us through no fault of ours. We still don't know how this happened.
Gripe No. 2 -â€" I seemed to spend our first couple of hours on the ship phoning and running backwards and forwards to reception. I had ordered a bottle of wine and canapes to be in our cabin on arrival and had to ask Reception where they were. They were eventually delivered at about 7.00pm when we were already supposed to be at dinner. Anyway, we enjoyed them as we had altered our sitting to 2nd which is the time we had originally ordered.
I also had to go to Reception three times to ask for our drinks vouchers which I had ordered only to be told each time to come back later.
Gripe No. 3 - My Sister's suitcase was delivered shortly after we embarked but mine did not arrive until about 7.00pm.
Gripe No. 4 - We really could have done without the two and a half hour journey from Milan to Genoa, especially on the homeward trip. When we originally booked the cruise we were supposed to be flying to Genoa which would have been much better but some time after booking were told that it had been changed to Milan. Our departure airport was altered too from Gatwick to Heathrow??
On the whole we enjoyed our time on the ship. We found the staff very helpful and polite, especially our two cabin boys. We got used to the scrum for food at lunchtimes. In fact, we enjoyed this food much more than in the evening. We felt that if folk couldn't find anything to eat then there must be something wrong with them.
The excursions were good; expensive but our guides were excellent.
Not sure whether we will do another MSC cruise -We got on well with the germans, spanish, portuguese but found the Italian passengers to be very rude and unfriendly. We did try to be friendly with them but to no avail. Ah well, we tried!
Another point I'd like to make is that some of the staff were asked if they received any of the service charge we were all paying each day and they told us that they did not???? Hmm! I wonder. Anyway, on the whole we enjoyed it and I would definitely like to take another cruise some time. I think I am hooked. Less

Published 11/12/11

Cabin review: 1010131

Plenty of space. Comfortable beds. Bathrobes. Location was great and close to lifts. Quiet. Connecting door did not bother us. I suppose if you had noisy neighbours it could be a problem. Suitcases could be stored under beds. Very clean.

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christine hopkins
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