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85 World Cruise Reviews

When we boarded the QM2 in Southampton and there was no "Welcome aboard" not even a smile as the staff were too busy chatting amongst themselves and consequently ignoring passengers trying to find their way to their staterooms ... Read More
When we boarded the QM2 in Southampton and there was no "Welcome aboard" not even a smile as the staff were too busy chatting amongst themselves and consequently ignoring passengers trying to find their way to their staterooms we realised that things had changed since we last sailed on this fine vessel. Our staerooms 6261 was waiting for us on our arrival with a bottle of bubbles as usual and the room was clean and in a good state of repair. The ship itself was in good condition with a few places the carpets looking worn and some of the furniture in the lounges were tired and some of the corridors had buckets catching the drips but on the whole pretty good pre its refurbishment. The Kings Court we have experienced before and never liked the layout but this time the service was appalling! The waiting staff didn't make eye contact or greet you but wandered around chatting to each other or hid when possible . For the whole 23 days onboard we were never offered a glass of water or a tea/coffee or ever saw a waiter carry a plate for an elderly person from the buffet to the table. The tables weren't cleared often so during your meal you would have a build up of dishes and also trying to find a clean table and cutlery is impossible after the first lot of diners have eaten after the buffet opened. We travel frequently on all the cruise lines and even on Princess cruises ,HAL and Oceania in their self service buffet the moment you sit down you are asked if you would like tea/ coffee/ water and in the mornings also juice, they are constantly circulating around the tables getting drinks and clearing tables with a smile and a greeting. We mentioned it to the Head waiter and also the " Customer service manager "at the beginning of the cruise and were told they would sort it out but of course nothing changed. The Brittania restaurant service was very good as usual though the food choices have been reduced and no daily standard favourites in addition to the main menu any more so quite a few evenings the choice was very limited for non meat options. The evening entertainment was of a reasonable standard in the main show lounge but far too many pianists and string quartets for our liking for the rest of the evenings. The day entertainment had some great speakers but very little else that wasn't a selling opportunity from the shops and spa. We feel that Cunard has cut service and standards so much that it has become just another premium cruise experience but not even as good as Princess or HAL but I guess they are all Carnival ships and are being cloned accordingly which is a shame. The QM2 is such an icon it is a shame they don't charge a bit more and take the standard back to what it was as we would happily pay more and enjoy the experience and unique ambience that Cunard was known for. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
When we first heard about a hundred eighty days world cruise we were both excited and almost incredulous that such a cruise did exist. My wife wanted an owners’ suite and even this was with more than one year in advance they were all ... Read More
When we first heard about a hundred eighty days world cruise we were both excited and almost incredulous that such a cruise did exist. My wife wanted an owners’ suite and even this was with more than one year in advance they were all booked. Nevertheless, we put ourselves on the waiting list and eventually we got the accommodation she wanted. We had never cruised on Oceania but we heard good things about the line. The rumors turned to be true, as we found everything that you would expect on a cruise ship, top notch. In our opinion the food was the best from any cruise line we sailed with (including Regent, Cristal, Holland America, Cunard). The staff was excellent – it was almost like they had the power to anticipate your wishes. Insignia is a smaller ship but it does not feel small. Nevertheless, the stage is not large enough to accommodate a cast and that was the only part of the entertainment that was missing. The shows were not different from any other cruise line - in the same tier - because after all the entertainers are taken from a common pool. But being a smaller ship Insignia had the advantage of going into several ports that would not accommodate larger ships. The tours were well organized. We were surprised not to find in the shore excursion brochure that we got before the cruise any overland tours. The tour existed as we found out only when we got on board. By then some were sold out but we did not encounter a problem with the overland tours we wanted. It is also worth mentioning that booking on the specialty restaurants is the first thing that you should do if you plan to have dinner there because it fills quite fast. During such a long cruise there is a chance that some ports might be skipped and we skipped about five. Some were skipped because of unforeseeable condition and others because of potential would be bad weather. Of course, any captain can play the trump card that he is doing so for the safety of the passengers, but when the predicted bad weather turned out to be clear sky and you have a chance in a lifetime to see a small port you may feel differently. On this ship and probably for the entire Oceania cruise line, the personnel contracts run for four months. Most likely nobody from Oceania anticipated the effect of that on a six month cruise. We changed the captain twice, the cruise director twice, the hotel manager twice and sometimes even more with the rest of the crew. That had the unfortunate effect that you have to get reacquainted with, and retrain your cabin steward, waiter, etc. So you would conclude that this is the perfect cruise line. It may be so if nothing **only** happens to you. We were about two weeks from the end of the cruise sailing from Hawaii to Los Angeles. Even if there was no storm the sea was relatively rough causing sways and jolts on the ship. It did not affect me as I was jogging on the deck but my wife was confined to the cabin. At some point a security personnel showed up on the deck and asked me to come back immediately to the suite. The suite door was open and the medical personnel were attending my wife. She was in tremendous pain: what had happen was that while she was trying to walk to the bathroom the ship lurched and she fell on her back. The following day we arrived in Los Angeles but the ship’s doctor could not find an orthopedist so we had to wait until the next day when we arrived in San Diego. We went to the emergency room in a hospital in San Diego where, following a CAT scan, they discovered that my wife had fractured two vertebrae in her back. That was a compressed fracture that just needs time to heal. The ER doctor communicated to the ship’s doctor the result and here comes the surprise: she was not allowed to return to the ship. Evidently, all our belonging and her jewelry were still on the ship. At least I heard of a similar medical emergency that happened during this cruise when a couple had to pack and leave the ship in one hour. That couple eventually returned and I found out that the unaffected spouse could have gone back and said that he was taking a “land tour”. I rushed back to the ship which was leaving in less than one hour to fit whatever I could in one suitcase and told the concierge that I was taking a land tour and I would rejoin the ship in another port. Eventually, I caught the ship in another port and was able to pack our belongings. But my wife was confined in San Diego in a nursing home for three months before she was able to return home. Of course, we could have come back to the ship where she could stay in bed for another ten days until we arrived in Miami – we live one hour away. So whatever you do, if you travel with Oceania just don’t get sick. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
This was our fourth cruise with Oceania and the third time we occupied an "Oceania Suite". We always book our own pre-cruise travel and hotels therefore this review is confined to the cruise itself. Marina is a beautiful ship, ... Read More
This was our fourth cruise with Oceania and the third time we occupied an "Oceania Suite". We always book our own pre-cruise travel and hotels therefore this review is confined to the cruise itself. Marina is a beautiful ship, well kept and the crew to passenger ratio makes for wonderful service. We were looking forward to spending 16 days aborad. We boarded the Marina in Buenos Aires and everything seemed fine until we got on the ship. Announcements were made that the suites were not ready because the "previous guests did not want to leave". Around 12:00 we went up to our suite even though we were told it was not ready. Many guests had to wait until 3-4 PM to get into their rooms. People were standing around confused. Once aboard things returned to normal. The food was excellent, service was good and friendly. The four specialty restaurants provide a great dining experience. We always book our shore excursions through Oceania to assure there are no problems in returning to the ship on time. On this cruise, the dispatch from the lounge for almost all excursions was completely disorganized and SLOW. Communication from the Oceania staff was poor and the people who had booked independent tours had a difficult time. Once we got on the excursions in general they were excellent. In particular Laguna San Rafael was spectacular and Coyhaique was outstanding. The Rockhopper penguin colony on the Falkland Islands was terrible. A rough 1 hour ride each way to see penguins stand still was a waste. We did not see much of the entertainment. The final night with the entire crew onstage was the highlight. The final day could only be described as a complete and utter disaster. The staff was obviously tired of the current passengers and were only interested in getting ready for the new passengers. We were told to leave our suites by 8:00 in order to be off the ship by 9:00. The only way to depart the ship by 9:00 would have been to jump ship and swim to shore. The line to exit the ship wrapped around the fifth floor area from multiple directions. The scene resembled 1200 cattle trying to get through 1 chute being pushed and shoved. The noise made it impossible to hear announcements, if any were made and the heat made matters even worse. Nobody was in charge or appeared to have any idea what was happening. After getting off the ship we had to stand in line waiting to get on busses. Once Oceania improves its embarkation and disembarkation procedures I will not hesitate to sail with them again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Meals and service were very good. An over abundance of tables for two. Cabin was well maintained by friendly and helpful staff. TV and internet worked well and a DVD player in the cabin with the ships DVD library gave an alternate to the ... Read More
Meals and service were very good. An over abundance of tables for two. Cabin was well maintained by friendly and helpful staff. TV and internet worked well and a DVD player in the cabin with the ships DVD library gave an alternate to the entertainment which was sorely lacking. Room service was prompt. Staff in general very helpful and pleasant to deal with. Itinerary was good, shuttle busses were good to town. Pre cruise itinerary was good, items given free on board with the package purchased were appreciated. "Free Air" is far from free, Itinerary offered required 40 + hours of travel, we paid to get what wold have been in our minds a shorter and less expensive routing. This was our first Oceania, not really worth the extra Luxury Pricing. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
It was very much regretted that all the great moments we had enjoyed so much on board was ended with poorly managed disembarkation process. During the chaos, all the crews were too busy with incoming guests and not caring the outgoing ... Read More
It was very much regretted that all the great moments we had enjoyed so much on board was ended with poorly managed disembarkation process. During the chaos, all the crews were too busy with incoming guests and not caring the outgoing guests properly and not even informing the outgoing guests what really happened rather than keep them waiting in a long line . We were forced to get out from the room at 3:00 PM while our disembarkation turn was still 6:00 PM. After getting into the terminal building, another 2,5 hours que required to get on the taxi, it was a bit fortunate that it was in the evening, if we got no 6 hrs delay, taxi queing would be under the sun. The ship berthed at 3:00 PM and we reached our hotel at almost 10:00 PM. We are not blaming all this chaos to RCI since partly caused by the capability of Bao Shan terminal to handle large ships but this should be able to be handled much better by RC who is supposed to have a lot of experience with this kind of situation. By the way on board activities were so enjoyful, great restaurants, well organised all ages activities, very clean environment, nice swimming pools, excellent fitness club, great hospitality and kind staffs. It was a pity that internet connection was not part of the cruise package and the rate was above the average. We do not think to sail with Quantum again especially star/end in Shanghai. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
We flew from Singapore to Dubai to join the ship for a long anticipated vacation on a WOW mega ship. Embarkation in Dubai cruise centre was chaotic from the start. There was not sufficient staff on the ground to guide passengers ... Read More
We flew from Singapore to Dubai to join the ship for a long anticipated vacation on a WOW mega ship. Embarkation in Dubai cruise centre was chaotic from the start. There was not sufficient staff on the ground to guide passengers through. We checked in online, printed all the required documents (sail passes, luggage tags, etc), yet we spent about 20-30mins trying to get registered at the cruise centre. There was a huge bottleneck of passengers trying to board at the same time. No designated queue for those booked in the higher categories and those who have mobility or disability issues. Once on board, things got better. The cabin was above expectation except that getting into the bathroom took some effort as the floor was raised rather high. I have a slight mobility limitation and use a walking aid. Booking online for dynamic dining, shore excursions proved to be rather easy. However, after a few meals on the ship, we realised that even though we booked at different restaurants each night, our meals appeared to be rather similar except for the venue and way they were presented. The menu for all meals at the Windjammer were very predictable. Same everyday. We were on a 14day vacation and cannot imagine how our fellow cruisers feel, some having been on the ship from Cape Liberty - eating the same food everyday. After day 4, we spent sometime planning out our dining schedules for the rest of the cruise, eating at different venues for each meal. Meals at Jamie Oliver were the only ones we looked forward to. Onboard entertainment was rather limited except for the headliner shows. Movies were shown on the open pool deck and repeated several times over the 14days we were on board. On some evenings, it was too warm to be on deck; some days when watching a movie, we had to move around the deck in order to avoid getting wet when it rained. Onshore excursions were badly planned and beyond expectation. Joined Penang food trail hoping to be able to taste some of Penang's favorite local food. The excursion departure timing was too early. We left the ship at 0730hrs. Guide brought group to a street coconut vendor. Having coconut so early in the morning? As it was too early for street hawkers to be opened, we were left at a shopping mall for nearly 2hrs!! Next stop, local fried noodles. Most of us gave up after realising that there was no seat and the wait for our order was 1hr. Group were next taken to try durians and a quick walk through a street in Little India. By this time, it was time to get back to the ship. Out at 0730hrs, no food on a food trail tour when we finally returned to the ship at 2pm. Been on Legend and Mariner previously. Although these were smaller ships, we had a truly good time but not this time on Quantum. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
We spent 29 nights in Quantum, sailing from New York to Dubai on the first two legs of her repositioning from the US to China. I’ve waited a month to write this review, in order to try and give as balanced a view as possible. ... Read More
We spent 29 nights in Quantum, sailing from New York to Dubai on the first two legs of her repositioning from the US to China. I’ve waited a month to write this review, in order to try and give as balanced a view as possible. Embarkation: Embarkation in New York was particularly well handled. Queues were short, and the staff handling the throng were helpful and friendly. Cabin: Our balcony stateroom on deck 7 (7682) was excellent. Storage space was massive by the standards we’ve experienced on other ships, and we didn’t come close to filling it. The glass shower cubicle was particularly appreciated (no wet, flapping shower curtain), as was the bathroom night light – ingenious. The sound proofing was awesome – in our 29 nights onboard we never heard a sound from adjoining cabins. The sliding door to the balcony was a wonder of engineering – light to operate, and once closed there was zero external noise. Our only quibble was that ship’s announcements could not be heard in the cabin, and there was no way to receive them on the otherwise very comprehensive in-cabin entertainment system – this seemed a very odd omission in a virtually new ship. Itinerary: We thoroughly enjoyed the combination of sea days and fascinating ports. The two ship’s tours that we did (Pompeii and Petra) were very well organized and coordinated, and were highlights of the trip for us. Entertainment: We saw Mama Mia on Broadway 3 days before joining Quantum, and then again on board 2 days after sailing. Without reservation, it was the best show we’ve ever seen on a cruise – and, the Quantum version was, in our view, superior to the Broadway version. We loved it, and it appeared that the cast were enjoying every moment of their time entertaining us. In fact, all of the shows we attended were good to very good. The onboard lecturers who joined the ship for the Barcelona to Dubai leg were also very good, as witnessed by the ever-growing number of attendees as the lecture series progressed. Dining: It would be interesting to go back in time to the concept meeting that decided to use RCI’s newest ship to conduct a bold radical experiment in dining. Maybe it was the work experience kid who put up their hand and suggested ‘let’s do away with a main dining room’ – given that it’s proving to be a horrible and probably very costly mistake its unlikely that anyone more senior will be prepared to wear the heat. We booked this cruise fully aware of the Dynamic Dining onboard. Our first indication of how bad an idea it is was came when we sat down, 41 days before embarking in New York, to book our dining times and places. For the first leg of the cruise (New York to Barcelona) we were able to book exactly 2 dinners in total in the 4 complimentary restaurants – every other day showed the restaurants as being fully booked, for all time slots. So, instead of the days leading to our cruise being filled with a growing sense of excitement at the adventure we were about to embark on, we spent each day worrying about not having bookings, and concerned that we’d end up eating each evening in the Windjammer. I haven’t seen this particular problem discussed in other postings about Quantum, so I don’t know how common our experience is. I have seen suggestions that by logging on 100 plus days before your cruise, then haunting the online booking system to pounce on cancellations; you can end up with the bookings you want. Even if it’s true – why on earth would you want to spend time doing that, in the lead up to what’s supposed to be a holiday? A more selfish possibility, that we heard about from a fellow cruiser who claimed to have done it, is that some cruisers made bookings for every restaurant for every meal – to then decide on the day which one to attend. Whatever the truth – the online booking system didn’t work. Once onboard, it very quickly became clear that despite the booking system, there was plenty of space in the complimentary restaurants – in fact we ended up eating where we wanted, when we wanted, and none of the venues was more that 2/3s full when we were there. Being onboard for 29 nights quickly raised another issue with the restaurants – each had two menus, which were swapped each week. So, within a quite short time, the novelty was gone, and it became an issue of ‘from this menu which I’ve selected from 4 or 5 or 6 times before, which of the limited choices will I repeat this time?’ The food was overall good to very good. Service was patchy at best. Plenty of other commentators have said lots about it – suffice to say that the setup is not conducive to the standards other ships have as the norm, and never will be. A final note on dining; we had noted that the Grande maintained a dress standard, and as we quite like going a little formal occasionally we’d packed appropriately. So, when men showing up to dine in the Grande turned up in collared t-shirts, jeans and sandals, we expected they’d be asked to go and change into something more appropriate. Sadly, no – they were loaned ill fitting waiters jackets, and shown to their seats. Really? The ship: I preface the remarks that follow by recalling our cruise in Oasis of the Seas 2 years ago. On that cruise, even on disembarkation day we were wandering the ship, blown away by the ambience, by the daring imagination that went into her design, and by the sheer wonder of all those things that make her fabulous. Sadly, Quantum is cut from different cloth – there was, for us, no wow. The walking/ running track on deck 15 is basically unusable for most of the day, because sun lounges and heavy strolling traffic make it almost impossible to walk with purpose. The Royal Esplanade is particularly disappointing: we likened it to a poorly designed strip mall lined by top end stores that nobody went into. Because it’s only two decks high the scale is all wrong, and the limited strolling space was further restricted by the tables of all the usual tat being sold at ‘super discount’ prices. The North Star was a nice gimmick, as were the bumper cars, and the iFly, but once was enough. The Robot Bartender on the other hand was a piece of tedious nonsense that blocked an already crowded passageway – perhaps suggested by the same genius who thought Dynamic Dining was a good idea. So – an odd conundrum: we really enjoyed the cruise, but will not cruise in Quantum again. The bizarre experiment with Dynamic Dining and the ordinariness of the ship will ensure our time and money are spent on other ships. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
We have just returned from a ten–day cruise out of Miami on Riviera called “Heart of the Caribbean”. It was our 24th cruise with Oceania that began in 2003 on Regatta. As usual, the voyage was very enjoyable and the experience was ... Read More
We have just returned from a ten–day cruise out of Miami on Riviera called “Heart of the Caribbean”. It was our 24th cruise with Oceania that began in 2003 on Regatta. As usual, the voyage was very enjoyable and the experience was greatly enhanced by the friendly and efficient restaurant and stateroom staff. Nevertheless, there were some disappointments this time that I feel I should share with you. 1. The itinerary showed three off-shore anchorage destinations when in actual fact there were four. The problem here is that I now have to use a walker when going ashore and dealing with type of tender on Riviera is too much of a challenge, thus at these four locations we simply stayed on board. At the other three destinations, docking was shared with a number of very large, high passenger capacity vessels that resulted in a serious port overload, particularly in Nassau. 2. There were some minor changes attributed to NCL that may be indicative of a trend: no basket of fruit in our stateroom on arrival, bottle of champagne (which we do not like) could not be exchanged for a bottle of wine as before, at a Captain’s dinner during an earlier cruise and with the General Manager on this one, they were not allowed to join us in even one glass of wine on orders from NCL. 3. Service in the GDR and specialty restaurants was impeccable, but we suspect that seafood and other food items are being obtained from cheaper sources. For example, seafood advertised as cod definitely was not cod and was inedible. Dover sole, a favorite, was over-salted and lacked tenderness. 4. Platinum Rewards once offered a two complimentary half-day tours benefit, that we made use of. This was removed and replaced by a discount on a total tour package that we have no use for. There were other items of concern during this trip, but I will spare you the details. Despite the foregoing, I can say that the cruise was a pleasure largely due to the ship’s personnel attitudes towards passengers, but there is a belief by myself and some fellow passengers that the statement that NCL acquired Oceania in order to bring its own standards up is rubbish, and the intent will be to increase profits by cutting back on the previously excellent levels of service. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
Hi all. My wife and I sail on the Dawn from Boston to New Orleans via Puerto Rico, Willemstad, Aruba, Ocho Rios Jamaica, Grand Cayman and Cozumel Mexico. We have only sailed on P&O and Princess before to New Zealand, around Australia ... Read More
Hi all. My wife and I sail on the Dawn from Boston to New Orleans via Puerto Rico, Willemstad, Aruba, Ocho Rios Jamaica, Grand Cayman and Cozumel Mexico. We have only sailed on P&O and Princess before to New Zealand, around Australia and Pacific Islands. So this was our first for NCL. To compare NCL with the other two is chalk and cheese. NCL being the calk. But we were aware it was a free style cruise and we wanted to give them a try. I cant say a lot of wrong with this ship and her crew as most of a cruise is what you make of it and not by how long you spend in your cabin or how much you can pile on your plate. FOOD The food was good to ordinary. Never bad. STAFF Always friendly and helpful. Never rude. ENTERTAINMENT This is where they need to do some thinking. The casino is a rip off (like I need to tell you that). The bingo is also a rip off. As previously said by others, they will take a lot of money from punters and hand back only pittance. The ship keeps the rest. Was not fair. The entertainers were mostly great. CABINS The usual smallish room with a smallish bathroom with a ocean view window. What we ordered and what we expected. PORTS Most were fantastic. Except for Aruba and Puerto Rico which didn't have a lot going for them. We organised a tour in all ports to see the sites. The best was the Bob Marley tour to his mausoleum in Saint Ann Jamaica. A must for Bob Marley fans. Swimming with the dolphins in Cozumel Mexico was also fantastic. Not only did we swim with the dolphins, but they also feed you authentic Mexican food followed by all the FREE tequila you can drink. FORMAL NIGHT What formal night. They have one but no one dresses up for it, but for a few die hards in their Military uniforms and suites. My wife (40) and I (50) enjoy the dressing up for photo's on the Formal night. Felt like a fish out of water on the Dawn. In summary, you cant keep everyone happy all the time. That goes with any cruise on any line. But we got what we paid for and we loved it, good and bad. The Dawn crew were fantastic and did their best as expected. The food was good and filled a hole. Never got sick or took anything back. Embarkation and disembarkation was smooth. Would we do Norwegian Dawn again, NO. Been there done that. Next. Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
We booked this cruise for the itinerary and enjoyed that. We flew to Shanghai the night before and stayed at the airport hotel. Slight problem checking in but it was fine for 1 night. The ship is showing it's age and could use some ... Read More
We booked this cruise for the itinerary and enjoyed that. We flew to Shanghai the night before and stayed at the airport hotel. Slight problem checking in but it was fine for 1 night. The ship is showing it's age and could use some sprucing up. The crew were preparing to leave the ship as their contracts were all up and a new crew was boarding in Singapore. The "old" crew was selected for oriental guest service and when Aussies and Yanks board, there were not enough bartenders or wait staff in the man dining rooms. Food also geared to oriental tastes. Overall a good trip, but not a great one. Read Less
Sail Date November 2014

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