Having heard nothing but raves about RCL and their larger ships, we were thrilled to be going on the Voyager out of New Orleans! Unfortunately, we started out poorly enduring several hours standing in the terminal trying to embark. The embarkation staff seemed clueless (the supervisor just walked back and forth, never adding advice or help) and the computers malfunctioned. When we finally reached the ship, we were surprised that the room did not include the small amenities we were used to having on other cruise lines(shampoo, rinse, lotion, etc.). We went to dinner in the same clothes we spent the day in since our luggage was nowhere to be found and we could see the 40-50 carts full of luggage still sitting on the dock. It finally showed up after dinner. We heard several others say that they actually went down to highway 95 at midnight to locate theirs!
The stateroom was adequate but nothing special - although it was a Superior Balcony room. We probably will not cruise on a 3,000+ passenger ship again. In addition to the crowding in most areas and waiting forever for elevators that still had room in them, there were several "crowd" events in the Promenade area that made it terribly difficult to navigate when you wanted to go somewhere. Several of the venues required you to go up a floor or two and then down to your destination since the theaters created unexpected dead ends. The food was good and our dining room service was excellent. Our room steward did a wonderful job, too.
I felt that RCL really "nickles and dimes" the passengers every chance they get. The main theater is not well set up to allow good views of the stage in all areas - unlike theaters we have been in on other ships. The entertainment offered on this cruise was pretty sub-standard. There was only one production show and it was OK but several of the numbers were pretty amateur. The production itself didn't seem to carry much of a theme...or if it did, it wasn't well done. Most of the entertainment consisted of comedy acts and a juggler. The one outstanding exception was the Horizons who were terrific. We found out that the ship had a "new production team" who were rehearsing on the ship so we would only see one show. We were used to cruises with production shows with excellent singers and dancers offered at least 4 or 5 nights on a 7 day cruise, so we were disappointed. Other cruise lines rehearse the new team after the shows while the current team is still on board and performing.
As we disembarked, we saw Martina McBride's bus pull up for the next cruise - REALLY? We found the clerks in the ship stores less than helpful and the merchandise was extremely limited and very over-priced. The jewelry offered was nothing special and I could not find a single thing that excited me. Although we thought ahead and brought medications we might need, when we unexpectedly ran out of normal drug store items, they were unavailable on the ship. Even worse, the medical facility was closed except for minimal hours so we had to endure overnight before getting medication. Once the medical office opened, they were very helpful. Everywhere we shopped on the ship we heard "We sold out on the last cruise and haven't restocked yet" - huh? We felt that this cruise was completely disorganized and no one really cared that the passengers were not very well served.
The best thing on the ship was the Promenade coffee area that was open all the time - and it was free. Our shore excursion on Grand Cayman started out totally disorganized. The excursion was saved by the driver who was friendly and knowledgeable. The port shopping in Jamaica was easy to get to, friendly and enjoyable. We learned several things on this cruise: 1. Carefully check out the port history and try to find out if there are major crew or show changes before booking. 2. Don't expect to feel like royalty ... it did not happen for us on this cruise. 3. Don't fall for the "big ship" myth! A 1500-2000 passenger ship offers enough without the crowding. Besides the food, waiters and room steward, the best thing about this cruise was the easy disembarkation! Too many excuses were made for a cruise experience that did not live up to our expectations.
Great balcony, good views, adequate closet space, lots of little cubbies to store toiletries in the main cabin area, loud inside the room if people are out on balconies talking at night, fairly long walk from elevator. You'll find the hair dryer in a drawer in the main cabin - not in the bathroom as you might expect!
We walked off and shopped at the port. People were friendly and there was a lot of nice merchandise available. The convenience was terrific! We wished they had more Jamaican music in the area.
Tour staff was unorganized. They tried to rush us and would have left without some of those who were booked if we hadn't objected. Bus had wet seats from previous tour. Driver was very good and saved the day!View All undefined undefined Reviews
Fun experience to hold the turtles and learn about the efforts to save them! Nice facility and friendly staff. One of the least expensive excursions and worth the price.View All undefined undefined Reviews