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Cruise Ratings
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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The islands we visited were beautiful and the weather was fantastic even in April. We booked a Royal Caribbean Excursion for each port of call and everyone of them was well organised and very ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The islands we visited were beautiful and the weather was fantastic even in April. We booked a Royal Caribbean Excursion for each port of call and everyone of them was well organised and very interesting. Embarkation was a breeze. We checked in online a few weeks before and from the time we arrived at the port we were given all the details of our drinks and internet packages and were on the ship within five minutes. Excellent organisation on Royal Caribbean's part. Sadly, our first impression of the ship is that it's looking very tired. The carpets are in very poor condition and the fixtures, fittings, bars, seating (pretty much everything) throughout the ship are very worn and in desperate need of replacing and refurbishment. All the public areas in the ship were pretty clean though and we always saw housekeeping staff working hard. The food was excellent everywhere we ate. We ate in the main dining room for most of our evening meals and the food was always hot, tasty and fresh. The buffet was extremely good and had excellent variety, even at breakfast. We ate in all three specialty dining venues and all were excellent except for Giovanni's which was just average. The entertainment was hit and miss. Most of the headliner shows were very average and, frankly, a bit old-fashioned compared to most other ships I've been on. The live bands who played in the bars/venues around the ship were rotated nightly so there was good variety. We didn't partake in many of the activities onboard but they looked just like your average cruise bingo/art auctions/trivia etc. Nothing much to write home about. The service is where this ship shines. All the bar staff and waiters are excellent. We had a good laugh with a few of the buffet servers and the bar staff were extremely attentive. They always did their best to fulfill any special requests and were friendly, funny and obviously enjoyed their jobs. I would not sail on this ship again unless it underwent a huge refurbishment. I will, however, sail with Royal Caribbean again due to the positive experience we had with the service on this ship. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
We took this cruise because the itinerary was good, the price was right and it dovetailed with the end of a land tour that we took in Croatia. However, we did not anticipate that the ship would be full of Italians on Easter holiday with ... Read More
We took this cruise because the itinerary was good, the price was right and it dovetailed with the end of a land tour that we took in Croatia. However, we did not anticipate that the ship would be full of Italians on Easter holiday with their children, or that some port and shopping activities would be completely closed due to the holiday. The reviews on MSC Opera are not as bad as some people would lead you to believe. I think probably it's a 3 star overall. The Opera is older and smaller than some and doesn't have the staffing (#s and training ) of Holland America (HAL); however, I would compare it's overall service level to Carnival. CAVEAT : We have 175 days on HAL, so that may "color" some of these comments. THE GOOD: Embarkation in Venice went smoothly; however, we were there early and it would not have been as smooth if we arrived with the crowds because they just didn't have the staff to handle a crush of people. Also, the staff's English is often limited. This was true in MANY aspects of the voyage. The rule: Speak slowly, clearly and make sure that you are understood...Don't assume that because they smiled and nodded their head that they completely comprehended what was said. The Lido restaurant's smaller than some but is able to handle the crowds but you have to know when to eat--"earlier is better than later". The fixed seating restaurants are adequate,but there is a limited "as you wish option ". The service people are sometimes overwhelmed because the waiters handle ALL drink orders and virtually everything is a paid item, even water, coffee and tea--except in the Lido.The food is adequate, sometimes very good, sometimes just OK. There is not the selection as on HAL, and the portions are smaller; however, I never saw anyone go hungry and they seem to be happy to give you double appetizers, entrees and/or desserts. The buffet offered in the Caravelle sit-down restaurant for breakfast and lunch seems to be a little more genteel, but here again, "timing is everything" to avoid crowds. We had a balcony, which was a nice room -- bigger than NCL, but not as big as HAL. The one really funny thing is the size of the shower. If you are approaching 200 lb it's tight. Our cabin steward was from Madagascar and he did everything that was required -- promptly, efficiently, cheerfully, with no complaints. Getting back and forth through the ship requires learning which elevators go all the way to the top and which elevators go all the way down and to what facilities --until you learn this you'll have a fair number of missteps . MSC needs an orientation tour presentation for people who have not sailed with them previously. We had a number of dealings with both Recepton and the Voyagers Club. In ALL instances we were very pleased with the help the we received . We only took one excursion, because MSC excursions are expensive, but we had on board credits to use and that was one of the ways we could use them. We found that most ports were doable on our own,especially with the help of the Rick Steve's Mediterranean Cruise Ports book and the wife's able trip planning. ..It certainly wasn't due to any info that MSC provided. I may do a port-by-port review on the individual ports--time permitting... THE BAD: MSC "nickel 'n dimes" ya for everything. Especially annoying is the charges for beverages (at least for Americans)--it's kinda like paying 1 € to go to the bathroom, while ashore--very European, but annoying. Charging for gelato and cappuccino on an Italian ship is just plain WRONG. Some people were pushy and didn't do lines well...We got used to it (:-). Some kids were often out of control and their parents seem clueless or incapable of making them behave. Eating can be a rugby-style event, if you don't adjust to minimize interaction with the crowds. Entertainment is barely OK--amateur hour in some cases. Good seats are gone, unless you arrive 30 mins early. MSC ties, or is slightly below, NCL and Carnival for the lack of information on ports (though the excursions desk did print out some basic Lonely Planet maps). There are NO programs on anything historical or natural. On sea days, if it's not pool, child, silly games/sports or drinking related it doesn't exist. It seems that they only want to sell over-priced excursions. Speaking of excursions, one of the really annoying things was the fact that they charge for transportation from the dock to the town, even though when they are very nearby. They should provide some sort of Transportation or at least info on alternative methods of transportation because paying anywhere between 8 and 10 €/pp to go in from the port is OBSCENE! ! BIG problem is getting on/off ship--their system is old and slow and they don't have enough people manning the stations, even during daily on/offs. THE UGLY: Final disembarkation was an absolute mess, plus their system denied departure for a number of folks right at the last minute because it thought they hadn't settled their accounts (which they had)...TOTALLY unacceptable! ! PROS: Staff is very friendly and helpful, but ensure they understand EXACTLY what you want. Ship is very clean, rooms are nice (but showers are miniscule). Many bars, lounges and common areas are available (most with live music at nite). Room stewards, waiters and staff are friendly and helpful--willing to meet your needs (as long as they clearly understand what you want). Good ports and good weather made this an overall good cruise...So, other than the disembarking problem this maybe approaches a 3.5 star. BUT, with that problem it falls to a 2 5 star I think MSC may adjust some things to cater to American-habits when it does more sailings from the States, esp with their newer ships--who knows?? BOTTOM LINE: Will I cruise MSC again--PROBABLY?? It depends on the itinerary, price and ship--BUT, never on a major holiday, especially in Europe. "Ya get what ya pay for" and in this case It was worth every penny... Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
We chose the itinerary - not the ship. The 11 night Greece and Croatia cruise leaving from Rome had all the places we wanted to visit, and this itinerary was only happening once! This was our fourth cruise, and 2nd time on Royal ... Read More
We chose the itinerary - not the ship. The 11 night Greece and Croatia cruise leaving from Rome had all the places we wanted to visit, and this itinerary was only happening once! This was our fourth cruise, and 2nd time on Royal Carribean. We didn't get the WOW! experience we were expecting... Firstly, the staff was very good and very attentive to details! Excellent staff everywhere. We had booked My Time Dining, but not always at the same time. The first night, they gave us the table right in the entrance of the dining room. We thought that we'd get another table the next evening so we didn't ask for a change, but we got the same table the next evening. We asked to be moved to another table, and that seemed to have created a lot of problems. They kept wanting to take us back to the first table. I'm not sure why this is important - I didn't mind getting different waiting staff every evening. Anyway, as stated earlier, the staff was excellent regardless of the table we had, but I'm not sure I understand the value of pre-booking My Time Dining. The food for dinner at the dining room was good to excellent, with a good selection every evening. In general, the waiter's recommendations were great choices. Breakfast in the dining room was not the best experience. After waiting in line to get seated, they hoarded us to a large table where we sat with other guests. Service was extremely slow (15-20 minutes before ordering, 30 minutes before getting our eggs benedict ). Room service breakfast was excellent on the first morning we tried it. The 2nd morning, the omelettes were chewy and rubbery. On the 3rd morning, some items were missing (eg: cereal without milk). Breakfast in the Windjammer was the same every morning, not many variations. Good in general, but the fried eggs and omelette station was not being replenished fast enough. Lunch at the Windjammer was generally good, with more variety, and fresh items. The salad bar had a good selection. One comment on the salad bar: when the bottle of olive oil was empty, they removed it but did not replace it - why? We had paid for the premium beverage package. Around the 3rd or 4th night, they started missing out on some of the brands our group was ordering (Botannist gin, Chivas, Stoli vodka, etc...) in Schooner's and the Safari Club. One evening, our waiter in Schooner's had to go get our drink at the Casino. After 3 evenings like this, I complained - why were only some of the bars stocked with only some of the brands? They eventually fixed the issue at Schooner's but they were still out of stock on some of the brands at the Casino and the Pit Stop. If I hadn't paid for the Premium beverage package, I would not have minded. But I expected RCCL to stock up on the brands advertized as being part of the package. To me, this is unacceptable. The entertainment was appropriate and varied. Over the course of our 11 night cruise, we didn't see/hear the same band play the same thing twice, which is good! The formal nights were just that - nights where people would dress up. Aside from a small speech from the Captain at the Captain's Welcome reception, I didn't really feel that the evenings were special. For example, on our prior cruise (not with RCCL), the central atrium was decorated with hundreds of balloons for the farewell evening ceremonies. After our last cruise, we were eager to book the next one. After this cruise on the Jewel, I'm not in a hurry to book the next one - I just didn't get the experience I was expecting. And if I book another cruise, it probably won't be with Royal Carribean. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
My husband and I traveled with our family celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary. Sadly specialty restaurants are the way to go anymore as Tides food was less than average for dinner, and the service was hit & miss depending on the ... Read More
My husband and I traveled with our family celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary. Sadly specialty restaurants are the way to go anymore as Tides food was less than average for dinner, and the service was hit & miss depending on the table assignment. Thankfully we weren't at the originally assigned table throughout the cruise. Toward the end of our journey, we chose Giovannis (excellent) and Chops for superior filet mignon and service. Why is it necessary to pay extra for what's already paid for!? If onboard, lunch was best at the buffet. The non alcoholic package was worth it...although again paying extra for what should be included: fresh squeezed OJ and Lattetudes for cappuccinos, frappuccinos and lattes. The staff there was stellar. Our cabin, 9212, was a great location mid-ship and larger than average. Both staterooms were rundown, drapes torn/ dirty, & the refrigerators were never cold. The bed was comfortable and the stewards worked hard cleaning every minute they were on duty. All the ships window were filthy. Entertainment, beyond the midshop lobby, was zero in our opinion. The casino smoke carried over throughout that deck. Watch your folio for added charges you may want to challenge. Both our families did. Embarkation and debarkation was easy. Upon return to airport, we didn't pay more than €100 for two (taxis are waiting to add you to passenger vans). We pre-booked three exceptional tour guides online by reading reviews on Cruise Critic. PKTravel and Santoriniexperts is another. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
We previously cruised on Costa, Carnival and Holland America as suite guests. We purchased a suite on MSC. This time there was no champagne in the cabin, no daily fresh fruit, no coffee and no hair conditioner. And no folded towel animals ... Read More
We previously cruised on Costa, Carnival and Holland America as suite guests. We purchased a suite on MSC. This time there was no champagne in the cabin, no daily fresh fruit, no coffee and no hair conditioner. And no folded towel animals :-) One of the mirrors was making a rattling noise in rough seas when the boat was rocking. Needless to say the noise was keeping us awake at night. Cabin server did not pay attention to details. I had to call Guest services to have hand soap refilled, bath towels and bathroom floor rug delivered. He was not picking up drink glasses that we were bringing from a bar. There were times when the glasses were sitting on the table for two days. Excursions were nice and most of the tour guides were very knowledgeable. We didn’t care for the tour guide in Marseille- Ola or Olga. Her English was not great and she was sometimes out of words. We were surprised she was not better prepared for the excursion. Her English vocabulary was poor. Shows were excellent and I gave MSC a score of 10 for their entertainment. You will enjoy their evening shows! Food - food presentation was 7-8 on the scale. Portions are really small. Breakfast and lunch for suite guests were the weakest areas. We had breakfast 4 times in a private restaurant but gave up after the 4th day because omelettes didn’t have the ingredients that we ordered and light Pepsi and orange juice were not delivered. So we started going to the buffets. Spa - I had 2 massages and a facial. Bali massage was great but the hot stone not so much. There was no music for the first 20 minutes because the system was down. I sent the massage therapist to the front desk twice to ask about it because all I was listening to was the sound of the blinds hitting the window frame. Hot stones were getting cold and the technician was not removing them so I was cold. When I walked in, the room was cold. The technician told me she was cold. So how was I supposed to relax when my feet turned into icicles? The temperature should have been much higher. Facial - they don’t have the arm that releases steam and warms up skin. Basic setup. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
We booked all inclusive package for couple (3 massages p/p). When we tried to schedule our massages the spa reception lady told us that they cannot accommodate the time when we wanted to have our massage. She gave us all the rubbish times ... Read More
We booked all inclusive package for couple (3 massages p/p). When we tried to schedule our massages the spa reception lady told us that they cannot accommodate the time when we wanted to have our massage. She gave us all the rubbish times instead (our scheduled dinner time). She said they are fully booked. But how can they be fully booked when they are offering discounted massages everyday. The couple we met on this cruise who cruises regularly said to us that it's better not to book it in advance because they will give you a schedule according to your liking if you book it right there and then and they have discounts everyday anyway. Spa is basic, just 3 thermal rooms. No jacuzzi or whatsoever. Food is average. Not too bad. Not that great either. Bathrobes not available unless you pay extra hundred pounds (available for aurea guests only). Do not get the fantasia upgrade, there are travel companies who can give you free water at bella experience. Fantasia is not worth it unless u wanted a Mediterranean breakfast delivered to your room everyday (just croissants, bread, jam, cereals). Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Second part of our cruise, which started November 17. Disembarked and made our way into town on the People Mover. The city experienced some rain for the past two days and was flooded. They put up ramps about 1 1/2 foot high to walk ... Read More
Second part of our cruise, which started November 17. Disembarked and made our way into town on the People Mover. The city experienced some rain for the past two days and was flooded. They put up ramps about 1 1/2 foot high to walk on, not very wide, but did the trick of keeping dry. Loved the city, will go back to spend more time exploring in the future. The ship needs some updating. Captain Tobias Oster was great. Very visible and friendly. The Windjammer was really crowded and hard to find a clean table. They weren't that quick in cleaning tables. Getting to the food was another issue. The buffet is set up in a circle in the middle, which makes it hard to navigate. Not much variety for dinner. Went to the main dining room most nights. Breakfast was good, made to order eggs and waffles. Lunch was hit or miss. Service could have been better. Entertainment was good and non stop. The weather was cold and rainy, so no music at the pool. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
I have been on this ship last year (Feb 2018)(Tampa/Belize/Roatan/Cozumel/Costa Maya) and it was an excellent experience overall. My partner and I booked this ship again and did a Mediterranean cruise ... Read More
I have been on this ship last year (Feb 2018)(Tampa/Belize/Roatan/Cozumel/Costa Maya) and it was an excellent experience overall. My partner and I booked this ship again and did a Mediterranean cruise (Venice/Dubrovnik/Kotor/Santorini/Katakolon). I was excited initially as I brought my brother and sister-in-law and it was their first time to cruise. Can’t really complain with the cabin as we booked an interior cabin and it served its purpose considering we will be out most days anyway. However, we have noticed that there are elements in the room that are really run down and needs replacing. But for the price we paid, didn’t really bother me that much. The embarkation was ok, no complaints, pretty smooth actually. So on the first day, probably due to the weather, there was no sail away party! Even an indoor party would’ve been nice to have set the mood. It was all a bit blah. Also disappointed that there was no lobster night! Was informed they don’t do lobster nights on a European cruise. Food was better, the food in the main dining room was excellent. Really enjoyed it. The cruise director Elvis got better towards the end. I like his sense of humour but there’s not enough of him! I only liked two cruise director staff - Tanya and Gianni. The rest needed some personality transplant. Ports of call could’ve been excellent, the weather was just a let down! Maybe do this cruise in the summer months or you’ll be experiencing rain!!! Having said that we still enjoyed it! Now to the biggest letdown - The entertainment! The headliner shows were alright. The production shows however are the same 21 months ago!!! Although the 4 singers were better than the last time, the faces of a couple of dancers were really distracting. It’s like “look at me and my showbiz jazzy robotic smile”. You’ll know what I mean when you see it. Also I had my LASIK surgery since I last cruised with Rhapsody and got better than 20-20 vision and I could not believe what I saw - the female dancers were wearing wigs with chin straps!!! They look horrible! And the amount of pirouette they have in each number was outrageous. It’s like I’ll stretch my legs to the right do a pirouette, move to the front and do a pirouette! My head was spinning watching. Defo need a new choreographer and wardrobe. Now with the costumes - I think it slightly got better the last time but I couldn’t help but chuckle in one number when the female dancers were dressed like red condoms with a glittery hand on their head! I mean what was that!!! Overall, it wasn’t my favourite. Not enough activities onboard either since we can’t sun bathe due to the weather. Just a shame as I loved this ship the first time around! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
We chose this cruise as a before Christmas break, we anticipated cool weather being early Winter, however we hadn't expected the rain! Rhapsody is getting to look tired, the outside has yellow rust stains, the interior well worn ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a before Christmas break, we anticipated cool weather being early Winter, however we hadn't expected the rain! Rhapsody is getting to look tired, the outside has yellow rust stains, the interior well worn in places. The previous cruise had an outbreak of Noro virus so boarding was delayed to allow a deep clean, the Ship was clean and crew were seen frequently washing down rails, tables, chairs in all public places. Outbreak measures were in place in dining rooms, salt & pepper pots were replaced with paper sachets for first 72 hrs. The Crew however are friendly and helpful. Smoking in the Casino makes it an unpleasant place to be for non smokers. The my time dining option is obviously very popular, however the tables in the my time area are crowded together which spoils the ambience. Service was a good standard and food quality was high. The windjammer can be variable and space is an issue on Rhapsody, despite cool weatjer we had no choice but to eat outside on a number of days as the insidd was jam packed. Shows were of the usual standard, entertainment in the Centrum was good, Breakfast in the main dining room was a big disappointment, food cold & limited choice, definately a drop in standard we have had previously on Rhapsody and other ships. Also the time that breakfast is served in main daining room is very limited, will not bother with it again. Chefs table was a great evening, high quality food and superb wine pairings. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The centrum is the common area where they have nightly entertainment. Seating is limited on the 4th floor. People hang over the balconies of higher floors to take part. On the 3rd day of ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The centrum is the common area where they have nightly entertainment. Seating is limited on the 4th floor. People hang over the balconies of higher floors to take part. On the 3rd day of the cruise, we were informed that a small percentage of guests had Norovirus. So no touching food in the Windjammer and extensive sanitizing around the ship. Was worried because we were continuing on this ship the next week. The food in the Windjammer was average. Had dinner in the dining room most nights. My Time Dining is great. You can go when you want, not early or late seating. Captain Tobias Oster was very engaging. Saw him many times throughout the cruise. The entertainment in the theatre was pretty good. Most nights had 2 show times. Itinerary was good and getting off at each port was organized and fast. Read Less

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