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5,885 Repositioning Cruise Reviews

I chose it for it having Madeira scheduled as a stop. That stop was cancelled. I have been on many cruises on at least nine different lines and by far, this is the most disgusting ship that I have ever been on. The staff are young, ... Read More
I chose it for it having Madeira scheduled as a stop. That stop was cancelled. I have been on many cruises on at least nine different lines and by far, this is the most disgusting ship that I have ever been on. The staff are young, inexperienced, and poorly trained and many don't speak enough intelligible English. They hang in slap happy packs and seem to look at you blankly when you ask for something. I had several instances of being almost knocked down by rude staff with no social skills who cross in front of you and run to get ahead of you. The public bathrooms were hard to find and many had toilets that didn't flush. The casino was smoke filled and dirty. I watched two instances were tri-poker players were so drunk that they kept throwing around chips and they were kept in fresh drinks. This is definitely poor sporting. everything about this cruise was a hustle to buy buy buy cheap tee shirts and jewelry...you are bombarded by flyers in y our room every night and even get harassed on the phone to stop by for cruise deals. Our luggage tag color coded was forgotten and we consequently had to wait on the hot deck with no shade or water. Many elderly and immobile people were suffering. This ship is a disgrace of poor management. Someone needs to be fired. BTW, if it was a potato, a pasta, or a rice dish, it was served every day..day in and day out.....food was not hot enough either.... Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
No information provided by NCL on where to find the shuttle bus in Civitavecchia from the train. Aft facing Penthouse suite had serious mold issue at our arrival that was never resolved. We chose this room and cruise specifically to relax. ... Read More
No information provided by NCL on where to find the shuttle bus in Civitavecchia from the train. Aft facing Penthouse suite had serious mold issue at our arrival that was never resolved. We chose this room and cruise specifically to relax. We couldn’t even sleep well with the horrible air quality let alone relax in the suite. We both ended up sick by the end of the cruise. Room did not look refreshed (2014) Furniture and bath sink were beat up. Concierge was invisible during the cruise. We ate at all but one of the specialty dining options and ate at the main dining room and buffet. Food was mediocre quality and almost always cold. At the Specialty restaurants and dining rooms, service was slow and food was barely warm. The two shore excursions we did through NCL were not great. The St. Martin excursion was basically a bus ride to the French side where we were dropped off at tourist tents for an hour. Bus driver/ tour guide did nothing more than repeating the same three things he had memorized and the bus smelled of burnt rubber. The Barcelona tour was better, both the bus and actually had a tour guide, but the description did not explain we would be dropped at Mt Montserrat for two hours. Barcelona port had shuttle buses from the port to downtown that were inexpensive (make sure you have a few euros). We do not recommend this ship and are very disappointed in the NCL experience compared to our previous NCL cruise. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
This is a smokers alert- Norwegian Bliss Nov. 3rd Panama Canal cruise. Prior to booking I was advised I could smoke on Deck 17 at the Spice Bar, In the humidor lounge, and somewhere at the pool area. I smoke mini cigars which are ... Read More
This is a smokers alert- Norwegian Bliss Nov. 3rd Panama Canal cruise. Prior to booking I was advised I could smoke on Deck 17 at the Spice Bar, In the humidor lounge, and somewhere at the pool area. I smoke mini cigars which are slightly larger than a cigarette. Arrival at LAS airport and awaiting transfer (prepaid) of the shuttle. We waited and waited and after an hour finally saw a woman with a blue scarf (no signage just a blue scarf) a gentlemen advised me he too was waiting an that I should speak to the woman with the blue scarf. I was advised that we were waiting for one more couple and the shuttle bus had been called. An hour after that I was told there were more customers arriving on different flights and that the bus had been called. Three and a half hours later – you read that right – a bus finally arrived and we were told it would be about a thirty minute drive to the port. The ride was uneventful but the three and a half hour wait started telling me this isn't right. Chaos upon arrival- no one tells you what is going on. Where are the bags, do they take them, do I, or where to check in. Checking in wasn't bad except there is no information available. Cabin #14796, Balcony; OK room, shower could use an enlargement but was acceptable. Room was fine, midships, except for at night the band playing at the pool area was loud in the room. Cleaning staff was excellent, friendly, and always asking if there was anything he could do. “Z “ Bags don't arrive till late at night the first night- wasn't use to that type of service. This is probably due to it being a large ship with 4000 guests. With no luggage to unpack it was time for lunch and a snack. Learned where the Cafe is, front of ship. Had an acceptable meal and headed off for a smoke at the rear of the ship. It's a long walk when you are unfamiliar with the ship. You get used to it! Upon arrival I was advised that I could only smoke cigars in the Humidor. I promptly went to guest services and asked for a complete refund at the first port. After a discussion I was advised that I could also smoke at the Spice Bar on deck 17 by guest services but there is no smoking at the pool area. I thought I would be ok with that until the arrival at the spice bar located behind Jimmy Buffets Margaritaville. I asked for a Bailys coffee at the bar. No! They don't have coffee at the bar. They advised to go to Buffets and get a coffee and then bring it to the bar. (I should do that?) Yes! Drink in hand I was further told I could only smoke on the Starboard side of the ship in an area no bigger than 12' x 35'. I thought I would be ok with that until other smokers showed up. I went to sit at a small table approx 24” in diameter and there were about 5 tables there each with about 5 chairs at each. Note- when we started the first day there were three umbrellas in this area. Three days into the cruise there were only two umbrellas. There is a covered area in which to smoke approx 12'x20' the rest is open or semi covered by umbrellas. Note- remember there are 4000 people on this ship. Another problem is that the starboard side railing is covered by sheets of glass or plastic with spaces in between them so that wind blows extremely forceful through the slats. ( hmmmm- creating cigarette ash to blow off a lit cigarette....fire hazard....naaaahhhhh! This ship was designed for Alaska waters and I don't think it would be pleasant to smoke in a cold climate with no wind protection. At the table the four ashtrays on the table were full of cigarettes. I complained to guest services that I don't clean ashtrays- this was taken care of and was acceptable for the rest of the cruise with one exception which I'll mention later. It got crowded as people learned where you can smoke- Humidor, Spice and the CASINO!!! Casino- smoking of cigarettes is allowed. Cigars-NO. People complained that if you didn't have money in a machine you couldn't smoke.-I don't know! I do find it odd that you couldn't smoke in the casino if the casino was closed-all ashtrays removed while in ports after all it is a smoking area but I guess you have to pay money to smoke there. The spice area holds approx 40 people maximum and they couldn't open up the entire deck area for some unknown reason. Rumor was it's a rule-Captain doesn't like smokers- Seems to me the non smokers have numerous bars they can attend but smokers are herded to an area the size of a cabin. On top of that the non smokers utilized the smokers rest room- It was comical watching some of them hold their nose as they walked by to open the rest room door- PS there is a bathroom on the non smoking side but they didn't use that one!!! I think you get the idea so far. It is now standing room only. A person of authority assured me the reason for the small smoking area was to prevent fire hazards. A travel agent aboard stated that all cruise lines are doing away with smoking. Appears so! I would say it is a beautiful ship except for all the walking one has to do especially since the elevators are always on the wrong floor and when you do get one it was usually full- to the stariways. What I found odd was that since it is a new ship what was a lot of the paneling on the walls coming buckling- front of the Cave/Cavern by the humidor. In the humidor and numerous other places. I guess someone didn't tag out the ship before taking possession from the factory. Guest speaker for canal trip was good- however on his first day the theater was packed full. Went to the atrium and you have to hear people complaining at guest services a few feet away from the speaker----- this also works in reverse- speaking to guest services you can't hear employees due to they always have music or show going on in the atrium area. Need sound walls installed. At guest services I stated this noise wouldn't be a problem if the speaker was on the TV in the rooms. The next day it was on the TV- problem solved. Back to the cafe- another design flaw- no where near enough seats. You get your food in a line and people are picking a piece of food and tasting it in front of the serving area. I was shown an area that is not crowded. Get your food and take it to the table towards the pool area. Set your food down and go way back to get a beverage, etc. Food is edible but I noticed that the India cafe area is hardly used. Manhattan room- excellent service the first night- then it went downhill from slow to bad. Food quality was fine. No charge. La cucina Italian? I don't think so- no lasagna, no eggplant $$ Cagneys steakhouse excellent. $$ This was a repositioning cruise- the ports were the worst. We always docked in the commercial parts of the ports. They charge for a bus ride to the towns. Seems petty to me- I your taking me somewhere at least have some service available. Due to 4000 people NCL needs a lot of work in this area. If you can't handle it hire more people or get out of the business. Even people that paid for tours advised that it was so disorganized that they got refunds. NCL- this is not good business sense. At Puntenaras we had to pay $15 PP to get to town. The HAL docked about 100' from where our bus dropped us off. Hmmmmm! THE OTHER SHOE DROPS- So I finish dinner and go to smoke on deck 17 in what I was now calling the CAGE! I am told that the area is closing in 15 minutes for a special party. OK- where do I smoke! Told to go to deck 19 top of the ship behind to smokestacks. I go to deck 19- couldn't find an elevator with 19 on it but finally did – there is only one elevator to 19. Talk about an unsafe area to smoke- on deck 19 the wind is howling. There is no wind protection, the bar is closed, no ashtrays, and no cover-overhead. There is however an NCL rep standing there that didn't have a clue about anything. Back to guest services- The complaint is written down a refunds due. I had it with NCL.... I was told that the bar did open- it was too windy- and ash trays were on hand after my complaining. Should never have happened. None of this was in the brochure. I suggest that any smokers avoid this ship. I have numerous cruises with NCL and this one has caused me to seek other cruise lines. As for non smokers who like large crowds, lines at dining areas, unavailable show tickets, disorganization of the highest level from getting to the ship and from the ship, terrible fill in ports with no transportation unless you $$$$. I further suggest that NCL reads this article- It could help but then again, maybe not! Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We chose this cruise as it was part of a package through eCruising and it sailed into Sydney from Singapore. From the beginning of the cruise tthings did not go well. The organisation (transfers) to the port were poorly organised. This ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was part of a package through eCruising and it sailed into Sydney from Singapore. From the beginning of the cruise tthings did not go well. The organisation (transfers) to the port were poorly organised. This is not Royal Caribbean’s fault but Ecruising’s . We waited at a very crowded port with no drinks, food and inadequate seating for several hours and were not able to board until nearly 7 pm. This should have been a streamlined process as there were over 80 guests booked through ecruising but apparently had no communication with Royal Caribbean to ensure that the process was efficient. We would have been better to ignore Ecruising’s organisation. By the time we did get aboard we were hungry and thirsty and when we asked a staff member to direct us to refreshments we were told we would not have time as everything would close soon due to safety drill. The ship had arrived late due to medical evacuations so late arrival can be excused but not poor organisation once boarding has started. Closer liason from the ecruising would have been most advantageous. Another medical evacuation caused late arrival in Fremantle- again this cannot be helped. Our biggest complaint and reason for low rating was our cabin. We were aware when booking that our room had restricted ocean views but not that it was directly above smokers area and also funneled diesel fumes into room if the door was open. Lights were on all night in the smoking area so we could not even see out. Enrichment activities included a talk on capital punishment - a great topic for a holiday! But it was well attended! The millions spent on the electronic presentaions to me have been a waste if money. Public areas were too crowded and often had to walk through restaurant etc to get from one area to another. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We selected this cruise to celebrate my husband's retirement. The combination of ports and transatlantic cruise was the perfect fit and the time of year was just what we were hoping for. We flew into Venice a couple of days prior to ... Read More
We selected this cruise to celebrate my husband's retirement. The combination of ports and transatlantic cruise was the perfect fit and the time of year was just what we were hoping for. We flew into Venice a couple of days prior to sailing and enjoyed checking out the city. The problems started once we arrived in our cabin and discovered the toilet did not operate. Nor did it work the next day, or the day after that, or the day after that.....7 days of our cruise. No operating toilet. We had a pool of disgusting sewage liquid on the floor of the bathroom on one day AFTER the plumbers left. After reporting the problems to Customer Service, we learned the problem was a continuation from the prior cruise. But we were the problem because we were not able to move to another cabin (my parents were next door and we were unable to leave them). For our "trouble", we were given $250. Seriously. The $250 "compensation" for 28% of our cruise being impacted was unacceptable. I would strongly encourage others to avoid HAL and the Oosterdam in particular. We have cruised both HAL and the Oosterdam in the past and had chosen this cruise over several others. We spent hours with customer service staff, plumbers and not doing what we wanted to do--but hey, we got pretty good finding the "public toilets" around the ship....as this was what customer service told us to do when we needed to do our "business". Yep, couldn't use our cabin's most basic facilities. Needless to say, this overshadowed our entire cruise and has changed our views of HAL. Additionally, there were challenges with the wine stewart. We were charged for wine we didn't drink. We were charged for a chard. ($62/bottle) when we drank a reisling ($32/bottle). Who knows who else he was stealing from. As much trouble as we had with the above, we enjoyed the entertainment, the special speakers and the America's Test Kitchen. Our cabin steward was a trooper in having to perform his usual duties and then also clean up from the mess the plumbers left. The ports and excursions we amazing. One challenge we did have with the excursions is that the descriptions regarding strenuousness and the passengers abilities often did not mesh. So those passengers who were more "agile" were held back by those could not keep up with the guides. Look beyond HAL to another cruise line before booking. Or be prepared for anything to go wrong. And then be prepared to be placated by the customer service staff "I'm so sorry Mrs. ***". These individuals are left to try to clean up problems across the ship without any information on what is causing the issues. We felt sorry for them. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
As a frequent cruiser, I have maintained that Royal was my favorite line. Not so after this trip.The balcony room that I had, had a thermostat that did not work, toilet that never would flush without manual assistance, and mattress and ... Read More
As a frequent cruiser, I have maintained that Royal was my favorite line. Not so after this trip.The balcony room that I had, had a thermostat that did not work, toilet that never would flush without manual assistance, and mattress and pillows that were so hard that some cruisers purchased "egg crates" is Quebec City to improve the condition . I repeatedly had to request tissues and toilet paper. Also, there was an adjoining room that made it impossible to block out light and conversations and wake up calls were audible. Also, two of the main elevators were inoperable for the entire trip. The entire ship was without limes, raisins, Pino Grigio, Jack Daniels and paper bar napkins for the last eight days of the cruise even though we had harbored in Portland and Boston. Exiting the ship in Saint John and Bar Harbor was very poorly organized and time consuming. On board I expresssed my concerns to front desk personnel and was told that it was as it was and there was nothing to be done. Upon return, I sent a letter defining my concerns to Mr. Bayley, CEO of Royal, and in a response from a member of the Executive staff, again, none of my concerns were discussed.I was offerred a $50.00 OBC on a future cruise within the next year. With such a dismissal, do they really expect I would cruise with Royal again when there are so many options. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Food was dreadful and allways delivered to the table luke warm or cold. Restaurant Menu very basic and repetirive Very limited variety Waiters friendly and helpful but maitre de's dusmissive of any complaints Buffet was ... Read More
Food was dreadful and allways delivered to the table luke warm or cold. Restaurant Menu very basic and repetirive Very limited variety Waiters friendly and helpful but maitre de's dusmissive of any complaints Buffet was chaotic and the food wss exactly the same every day for 23 days Bar staff and cabin cleaning staff friendly and polite Drinks included in the package purchased were very limited Reception, excursion and managerial staff wrre rude and unhelpful dealing with any complaints (and the queue of ppl complainting every day at reception was long) Entertainment / animation/ activities were rare and what was provided was poor and shows were mediocre Inteenet package purchased was slow and on several sea days not working at all. In cabin movies (pay per view) did not work and froze Announcements on the ship were overly loud and in multiple languages Shops on bpard very expensive and items for sale never changed in 23 days with no cheaper items or sales Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We have been C&A members for many years and been always pleased with the services and treatment on board of RCI ships. We been grateful to the army of the hardworking members of the RCI team, many ymployees, cabin attendants, ... Read More
We have been C&A members for many years and been always pleased with the services and treatment on board of RCI ships. We been grateful to the army of the hardworking members of the RCI team, many ymployees, cabin attendants, restaurant workers, cooks, etc. for their efforts to make our vacation comfortable and enjoyable. We never complained. This time, however , we encountered something different. The detailed account of our recent misadventure is enclosed to this message. Thank you for reading In October 2018, to celebrate a wedding anniversary, we boarded Explorer of the Seas for a 21-day cruise journey from Seattle to Sydney. In addition to cruise sailing we also planned a detailed itinerary in Australia, including flight from Sydney to Cairns, scuba diving in Great Barrier Reef for six days, and return home to Portland Oregon. For two years prior to travel we were looking forward to once in a life time exotic adventure. My husband and I like to cruise and dance. We enjoyed RCI hospitality and have been diamond members of Crown and Anchor Society for several years. We are both seniors, but continue to work full time, therefore each vacation is very special. To travel to Australia these days, all U.S, citizens must have an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) approval. It is an electronic application that is filed on line and approved (or rejected) within seconds. Once approved, it is electronically attached to your passport and subsequently secure the entry to Australia. Prior to boarding the ship, we were provided with the web site address and instructions how to apply for the ETA. Day 1. Departure Our dreams were instantly ruined once we stepped aboard a magnificent cruise liner Explorer of the Seas. My Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) was approved; my husband’s one - rejected. No reasons or explanation provided. But the automatic response suggested that we should apply for a tourist visa. Day 2 In search of advice and assistance we met with the Explorer of the Seas’ manager of guest services. At the Crown and Anchor parties we often attend, the captain and officers always thank and praise the past guests for loyalty, and pledge support and assistance in ANY perilous situation and circumstances. Right? Wrong! Meet Mr. X, the manager of the guest services office of Explorer. On surface, he appeared groomed and polished. In substance, he was cold, unsympathetic, indifferent. He advised, that my husband’s ETA rejection is not the RCI problem, but rather decision of the Australian government; that we should disembark in the next port of call, preferably Honolulu (albeit a huge fine we were responsible for under the Jones Act). He frequently used the word “unfortunately, as the highest degree of sympathy and compassion. In addition to his arrogant demeanor he was amazingly misinformed. In fact, everything he said was either flat wrong or highly inaccurate. For instance, he advised that the ETA rejection was a decision of the Australian government ( wrong; it was not a government decision just yet, but rather a computer program with certain preset data); that we shouldn’t be allowed to board the ship without the visa on the first place ( wrong, the passengers were allowed to board and did apply later); he said he could not say if there were any other guests in the same or similar situation, as it was against the RCI policy (there was no such policy); he said, we could not disembark in New Caledonia because it would require Australian visa( wrong again, it is a French territory and visas for the US citizens are not required). His demeanor was unfriendly, if not arrogant. He did not offer any constructive advice or suggestions. At the contrary, he behaved as if we were common criminals or habitual visa violators. His verdict was simple and clear “get out of the ship”. The fact that we had purchased a twenty-one-day cruise fare and paid for the hotels and air in Australia meant nothing. If before the meeting with manager X we felt upset and worried, after it we were completely devastated. This cruise was becoming the worst nightmare. The same day ( which was second day of the cruise in the middle of the Pacific) we were provided with the rules of disembarkation that was carefully placed on our well-made bed. Perhaps, Mr. X wished my husband to disembark in the open ocean…. Day 3. Once we realized there was not much help or assistance coming from the guest manager’s office of RCI to rely on, we decided to take some actions and get to work. Within the next twelve hours, we learned all we could about the Australian visas and applied electronically for all of them: again, for ETA, but from different intermediary; for the transit visa (in hopes to at least be able to fly back from Sydney and save the costly airfare); and the Australian tourist visa (visa # 600). This one required 20-page application and numerous supporting documents that we too provided electronically. In the meantime, our cruising was business as usual: the RCI praised us, as diamond members, for loyalty. Each day we were invited to various celebrations, lunches, behind the scene tours, dinners, exclusive member shows, etc. Also, we were presented with elegant souvenirs as a token of appreciation for our loyalty. Day 4. We called the manager’s office to say that, first, we applied for Australian tourist visa; and second, in case the tourist visa is not approved, we would like to disembark in New Caledonia. Day 5. Manager's assistant, guest administration officer called back to advise that we would be allowed to disembark in Noumea ONLY if we provided the flight itinerary and hotel accommodation confirmation in New Caledonia. The deadline - tomorrow, in the port of Lahaina, the eighth day of the cruise. We were stunned. This information is required at the time of entry New Caledonia. Why manager X demanded it 12 (twelve) days in advance ? It remained a mystery. Regardless, we did not question or dispute his demands. What else you do, if you are in the middle of the ocean under complete power and control of an incompetent and arrogant RCI official? You just comply. Again, we spent hours on internet putting together a new itinerary, booked a new flight from New Caledonia back to the US, and cancelled all the previously booked (nonrefundable) flights in Australia and cancelled all existing hotel reservations in Sydney and Cairns. As was required by officer X, we provided the info to the guest services desk. Day 11 On the 11 th day of the cruise, and twelve days before Sydney, we discovered my husband’s visa was approved. The guest service manager’s assistant called and asked If perhaps we still wanted to disembark in Sydney….. No, we did not. By that time, we already cancelled all booking in Australia and made a new reservation in New Caledonia. On October 24th, we disembarked in New Caledonia. We wanted to leave the unfriendly ship ASAP. The manager X did not offer a single word of regret, sympathy, or apology. It was business as usual. Yes, we suffered financial losses due to improper conduct of the RCI manager’s indifference, and his insistence on booking a new itinerary ahead of time; and yes, we lost two full days of the cruise vacation. Most importantly, we lost faith in RCI and felt deep disappointment in treatment and attitude we had experienced on board of the Explorer. Mr. X is not good for the RCI guests and he is not good for the RCI reputation. He should be removed, or seriously retrained. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Sailing from Genoa on a transatlantic that arrived today into Port Miami. Crew is very hardworking and trying to work with what they have. Biggest issue with this ship is that there is a total lack of leadership and communication. ... Read More
Sailing from Genoa on a transatlantic that arrived today into Port Miami. Crew is very hardworking and trying to work with what they have. Biggest issue with this ship is that there is a total lack of leadership and communication. Virtually no announcements when the ship is cleared, inconsistent information regarding ports, transportation and shore excursions. This bred a toxic environment among guests. Often shoving, pushing and swearing in multiple languages. A mess!!! Food was inconsistent quality and either overly salted ( Chef smokes???) or completely devoid of flavor. Steaks were tough and grisly and inedible. Servers are rushed and literally grab menus out of your hand when you’ve finished ordering. Be prepared to wait significantly betwee courses especially entrees even when you order immediately after being seated for your seating time. Best food items on the ship were Pastries and desserts in the dining room, fruit plate in the dining room at breakfast. Eat breakfast in the dining room, lunch in the buffet or off the ship and take your chances on dinner in the dining room. Daily program was often incorrect. Library was closed for training staff/ crew as they approached the US market for the season. So a 22 day voyage which had over 5 sea days often we couldn’t access he library! Lounge entertainment was good but theater located entertainment was 35 minutes max and if you like opera you should enjoy this cruise ship. Not the best quality. Dancers might be compared to your local dance classes back home. 22 day transatlantic cruise with many stops in Europe. Once we departed Tenerife satellite TV ended. Daily inquiries netted multiple excuses including we are working on it, we are transitioning to the US version and finally my personal favorite was, madam we can’t posaibly get tv in the Atlantic Ocean. Completely crazy! So NO TV for more than half the cruise including all the sea days making the crossing while Major breaking news was occurring in he US. No news whatsoever onboard and no compensation via complimentary WiFi time was offered. I appreciate that you don’t go on a cruise to watch TV but having access to news is important on a long voyage. They did offer some free in room movies but did not say they were “ free” until about day 5 without Tv so everyone thought they would be charged for the 8 or so movies offered. None of which were first run!! Disembarkation at most ports ( Marseille and Bermuda, NY and Miami) were terrible. Virtually NO announcements made. Ship never arrived in time and left NY nearly two hours later than stated but they DID NOT make an announcement re the delay for 45 minutes and then finally sailed away nearly 2 hours after. In Miami at the end of the cruise guest who were told to depart ship at 8:15 spent ONE HOUR STANDING IN THE TERMINAL WAITING FOR THEIR LUGGAGE. Their timing, organization and communication is VERY POOR. Just remember you get what you pay for and this cruise line that focuses on the European market has much to learn about customer service, communication and hospitality. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We booked a signature suite on this cruise which showed on the HAL website as being a newly refurbished suite with new couch and chairs,marble top counters ,big screen TV on the wall and bright fresh interior but what we actually got when ... Read More
We booked a signature suite on this cruise which showed on the HAL website as being a newly refurbished suite with new couch and chairs,marble top counters ,big screen TV on the wall and bright fresh interior but what we actually got when we came onboard is a tired old suite with marks all over the walls,an old bathroom with old grubby shower curtains, an old TV that you couldn’t make out what was on the screen due to the fuzziness on it. boy were we disappointed! They have since replaced the TV but have stuck paper serviettes under it for whatever reason which looks terrible but at least we have a clearer picture, . We have complained to the customer relations desk onboard who were really disinterested and said we should have read the fine print that says the photos of the cabin are not necessarily representing the actual cabin!!!! That is false advertising as ok the layout may vary or the colour scheme but not when the photos are actually under the Noordam and showing a new cabin and not a dinghy old cabin that is desperate to be refurbished. A number of suite passengers have complained as it is all suites and cabins that have not been fefurbished, The Noordam overall throughout the vessel is very worn with old grubby carpets throughout the dining rooms,stairwells and quite a bit of the public rooms. Around the covered pool area they have set up long trestle tables with plastic chairs which has made the whole area overcrowded and very tacky looking. The room service has delivered us cold toast and cold water for tea so now on day 4 we have despaired with room service and will have to tackle the throngs of people in the Lido. We are 4 star mariners and are very dissatisfied with what is happening with HAL and the standard of the ship as it once was a fantastic line to sail with. On a positive note the Staff are always a pleasure but with the cutbacks on staff they are working twice as hard and consequently the tables in the pool area are not being cleared and no delivery of water or tea and coffee any more but of course you can still purchase a beer because that creates revenue. If you are booking the Noordam for travel before I understand November 2019 just bear in mind you are not getting the cabin as shown in the pictures or on the website As there are a lot of disgruntled passengers onboard. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
very disappointing embarkation went smoothly cabin ready when we arrived at noon. cabin small, but appreciated muted colours of brown and teal and coffee maker since room service costs 7.95 per delivery. noisy music blaring ... Read More
very disappointing embarkation went smoothly cabin ready when we arrived at noon. cabin small, but appreciated muted colours of brown and teal and coffee maker since room service costs 7.95 per delivery. noisy music blaring everywhere including the elevator. only cabin and observation deck quiet, except several times day and night, cabin shuddered from slamming doors. pop music played so loud in the cafeteria we took breakfast in our cabin. bar in the cafeteria opened at 6 am food served at 7 am. thank goodness, Savor and Taste restaurants open at 7 am. music loud, but I was not in danger of going deaf. ALL food stations noisy w/ silverware clashing w/ metal Holland America and Celebrity use wooden salad bowls, Princess uses plastic. Bliss uses meta; bowls and metal utensils.-- adds to the constant din. BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT WAS THE NOISE IN THE THERMAL SUITE. Some women were talking so loud we couldn't hear the meditation music. I went at 8 am to avoid the crowds. On Holland America, Celebrity, Princess, RCI there r signs requesting silence and the staff remind the rare persons who forget. No signs on the Bliss and no one cares. I sailed on the Epic a couple of yrs ago. The Spa was quiet. even in the main dining room and specialty restaurants, people's voices rose as they drank alcohol. bliss advertised free bar as a perk and most people took advantage of this offer. in fact, because i am a silver member i get a free bottle of wine in my cabin even though i do not drink. no matter how many times i request sparkling water i get wine. some stranger getting off the elevator when i arrive benefits. i suspect the powers that be on Norwegian r alcoholcs. i am diabetic and i tell them every time i sail.-- no one cares Norwegian provides lousy customer service. when we arrived in San Francisco, due to unclear instructions i disembarked early b4 i had eaten breakfast. an officer came to me after i complained to security that i could not wait 4 hrs to get back on ship to eat he assured me he would solve the problem. i was shaking by this time on the verge of passing out. he never returned. i will forever be grateful to Gina from Frisco security who gave me a yogurt from her lunch. NorwegIan also disembarked people in wheel chairs who had to sit for hours b4 returning to the ship why couldn't they have been taken off the ship last, not first? when i finally got back on board i whimpered bitterly to a supervisor about them putting my life in jeopardy. to calm me they sent chocolate coated strawberries and a bottle of wine to my cabin. chocolate and alcohol will kill me. some travel agents already tipsy in the early afternoon benefitted. how hard is it to google diabetic diet? i was so upset i went to a manager at guest sevices who listened, but probably won't implement my simple suggestions eventho she said thet were good ideas. on the plus side, The Jersey Boys show in the theatre was great as were the Beatles impersonators in the Cavern Bar. we left Havana when a young lady on stage took off her bra. for a moment i thought i was in Vegas The food on Norwegoan ships has improved. I like the fact that i can order 3 appetizers and call that dinner. Teppenyaki was terrific except for the woman who spilled her beer on me. the food was almost as good as if i had eaten in Vancouver. Los Lobos served fresh quacamole which was as good. they had IMPORTED the corn from Chilliwack BC i recognozed the peaches and cream corn which was delicious why do i cruise Norwegian? Itinerary and spa. The Bliss stopped in Victoria where my daughter andi had planned to visit the Egyptian Exhibit at the museum. this seemed like a better idea than an overnight in a hotel. BIG MISTAKE Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We booked this cruise to get home to Australia from North America. We were assured when booking that the ship was to be refurnished in early 2018. On embarking we found a stateroom with tatty furniture - holes in the upholstery, peeling ... Read More
We booked this cruise to get home to Australia from North America. We were assured when booking that the ship was to be refurnished in early 2018. On embarking we found a stateroom with tatty furniture - holes in the upholstery, peeling wallpaper, chips in bath and sink and bathroom mirrors degrading. The public areas were no better. Meals in the dining room and lido were at best lukewarm no matter where or when we ate. The only way to get fresh hot food was to dine in the pinnacle grill or canalettos both of which were excellent. Having paid for one's food one shoukd not have to pay twice. A lot of the fruit on board was old from the start of the cruise and off by the time we reached Fiji. The ship ran out of english breakfast and tetley tea bags and corn flakes. Only one flavour of yoghurt available at a time. But notbto worry there were at any one time inumerable boxes of a full range of caffeine free teas! The numbers of servers has been reduced so much that the tables could not be cleared between diners and on some evenings it took over 25 minutes to place one's order for dinner. When it arrived the food was usually tepid at best and when returned to the kitchen to be reheated it came back no better. It was ridiculous that as we crossed the Pacific passengerd had to wear sweaters inside the ship because the airconditioning was so cold. The standard of evening entertainment was poor with large gaps when nothing was happening at all. The internet access was described by a member of Holland America staff as abysmal most passengers were much ruder about it. The 'range' of dvds available was a joke the staff asked psssengers for a list of requested titles then couldn't deliver any of them I am not sure what Holland Americ's agenda is; whether they are trying to move down market within the CCL group. If so they may well succeed but they alienated a whole lot of experienced mariners on this cruise. Many times I heard fellow passengers express the determinstion never to cruise HL again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We went on this cruise because of the ports visited. We were on the ship for 28 days. My husband and I have been on 50 cruises and have never been so disgusted with a cruise line. It is now on the bottom of my rating list. Ship ... Read More
We went on this cruise because of the ports visited. We were on the ship for 28 days. My husband and I have been on 50 cruises and have never been so disgusted with a cruise line. It is now on the bottom of my rating list. Ship leaked badly, very rude and arrogant crew. No customer service. Food bad. Dining room staff impossible. Cabin location(mini-suite) where 6 decks and bridge above could look on your balcony. Entertainment venue was always full 1 hour before entertainment began. If you were not there early you stood or sat on the floor in the aisle. Not perks for Captain's Circle members. Tv in cabin had no programming for account, movies, remote very limited. On the docks the crew members would rush off to get the ground transportation before paying passengers. No representative on the docks for Princess to answer questions. Please think carefully before going on the ship. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Chose this cruise as the itinerary was just what we wanted. Some of the South Pacific ports were disappointing, but loved all those in New Zealand and of course our final destination of Sydney. Ship is old, Horizon Buffet lacks ... Read More
Chose this cruise as the itinerary was just what we wanted. Some of the South Pacific ports were disappointing, but loved all those in New Zealand and of course our final destination of Sydney. Ship is old, Horizon Buffet lacks variety and food tasteless, main theater much too small to accommodate the passengers, poor management such as running out of specific wines at the bar, plumbing and water system had problems, although dining room food was good the menu selections weren’t....ship needs to be retired. For a repositioning Cruise they did not offer afternoon entertainment or lectures as other cruise lines do. The Golden Princess biggest asset was their crew. They were professional, polite and very accommodating...with a few exceptions. Did not take any ships tours, so cannot comment. Our cabin with balcony was old, comfortable bedding, closet space plentiful but in dire need of renovation. Princess Cruise Line needs help.... Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We choose this cruise solely based on it's itinerary. We had read previous poor reviews about this ship but Princess stated that all had been corrected. They lied. There are still garbage smells in public areas. Outside aft elevator ... Read More
We choose this cruise solely based on it's itinerary. We had read previous poor reviews about this ship but Princess stated that all had been corrected. They lied. There are still garbage smells in public areas. Outside aft elevator lobby on 7th deck for one. There are still mild smells in corridors throughout the ship.Problems started with embarkation. There was only one person taking in baggage. He would fill a cart, disappear for awhile to unload the cart and then return to start the process over again. This took forever with only one person. Once aboard we then observed many unsatisfying problems. The bird poop on our balcony furniture was disgusting and made us avoid meals there. There are only 2 aft elevators reaching the 17th deck. One was inoperative for the first week of the cruise. The moving stairway from the 17th deck to Skywalker lounge operated one day of the 20 day cruise. The food selection in the main dining room was the worst selection that I have experience in many years of cruising. The buffet (where we wound up most nights) was not much better. The quality of the food was below average. The library had a selection of about 2 dozen books total. There were water leaks through out the ship with areas roped off and buckets underneath. the theater had water pouring in streams from the ceiling. This is the only ship I have experienced with real ice cream only at dinner. The ice cream bar only serves soft serve cones. The Princess Patter was often wrong and incomplete. It would certainly be nice to include a short description of the evening shows. The enrichment program was a joke The theme was considering retirement and what to expect and plan for. Great topic except about 80% of the passengers were already retired. I am sure that someone at Princess has heard about the adverse health effects of second hand smoke. To get to the main entrance of the theater, it is necessary to pass through the smoke filled casino. Doors usually opened 1 hour before theater performances. This is great for handicapped people. Unfortunately, too many times the doors opened 10 to 20 minutes early leaving the handicapped standing and waiting. It was necessary for handicapped to arrive early in order to get suitable seating. Many events were conducted in the Piazza with no seating. They could at least set up some folding chairs. There were too many overlaps of one time performances so you day to choose one or the other. The theater entertainment was just plain poor. Way too much rock and roll for a 70+ average audience. Many people walked out each night. The resident ship performing troop only did 2 shows in 20 days. Actually, one was good. Again, the other was not suitable for the audience. The only positives about this cruise were our cabin attendant and we got to New Zealand. Albeit, after a several hour stop at sea one day to check out new equipment on board. Why couldn't they do this at night when people are sleeping? I am sure that other problems existed, but there were too many to remember. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We arrived in Shanghai for 3 nights before the cruise,we were aware that the biggest percentage of guests would be Chinese,what we didn’t expect from royal Caribbean was the food /entertainment and everything else were definitely aimed ... Read More
We arrived in Shanghai for 3 nights before the cruise,we were aware that the biggest percentage of guests would be Chinese,what we didn’t expect from royal Caribbean was the food /entertainment and everything else were definitely aimed for the Chinese market only,the food was by far the worst food We have ever had on any cruise ship we have been on,the entertainment was an absolute joke,they had a magician on one night and he was that good nearly the whole audience disappeared in the first 2 minutes and never returned,Chinese karaoke was the final straw for evening entertainment,the customer services desk was also by far the worst we have ever experienced mostly Chinese and couldn’t understand a word of English and no help at all,the bar staff were the same they have not a clue how to make drinks cocktails we had to tell them,Hadi in the solarium was excellent really nice guy very pleasant and helpful nothing was to much trouble,we mostly ate in the coastal kitchen ,the waiter Jonnie was also very good,the embarkation and disembarkation was a disgrace they have not got a clue,it took 3 hrs queuing to get on to the ship,they are going to be putting the new spectrum of the seas over there what a waste of a ship,again we don’t think this cruise should be sold to any one outside of China.we spoke with a lot of people on the ship from Australia and the United States and uk ,every one was of the same mindset and most said they would not sail royal Caribbean again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
The cruise wasn’t good we stayed on the boat more than we were suppose to didn’t get to go to the destination that we paid for instead ended up in Florida and a stop for a few hours at a private island. Didn’t get to see anything I ... Read More
The cruise wasn’t good we stayed on the boat more than we were suppose to didn’t get to go to the destination that we paid for instead ended up in Florida and a stop for a few hours at a private island. Didn’t get to see anything I wanted and customer service on the boat wasn’t the best. We still haven’t gotten money back for not going to Bermuda But other cruise lines did give their customers money back and a money off the next cruise. I won’t be going through them again for a cruise. The food on this cruise was okay. It could be better and also the entertainment was probably the only good part of the cruise. The shows saved my vacation but everything else was no worth the trip. Also the drink package was a good thing to have on the cruise without those two things I would have had a worse time. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This ship went to the towns that I wanted to visit and ended up in Quebec City, Canada, which was important to me. The rooms were itty-bitty. The bath had doors to toilet, etc. but no more than 1/2 of a person could fit in there at ... Read More
This ship went to the towns that I wanted to visit and ended up in Quebec City, Canada, which was important to me. The rooms were itty-bitty. The bath had doors to toilet, etc. but no more than 1/2 of a person could fit in there at a time and I am not a large person. I could only raise my arms to shampoo my hair if I turned on a diagonal. The food was terrible and served over and over. There wasn't a truly good meal the entire trip except maybe the prime rib on the last night. That too was thin and covered with an indescribable sauce. A few dishes of fish were ok, no shellfish except tiny, cut in half shrimp. The steak was terrible. Everything was overcooked and then covered with unrecognizable sauce. They had several days at the buffet with very strong Indian food that I could not eat, so it was back to salads and eggs. The tours were abominable based on what people said and I had read that earlier in the reviews. Most towns were easily walked in about an hour so tours were mostly unnecessary. I did take a Hop On-Hop Off Bus in Boston and asked why they were charging $69 for one person when I remember it being much cheaper last time I was in Boston, or any other city for that matter. The staff at the kiosk said it was because NCL owned the buses. At the very least, they had a connection. Never mention that you are on the NCL! The staff was remarkable but usually unhappy, we saw some cry while working. Entertainment was 2 days of real entertainment. There was a juggler/comic who couldn't. In the bars there was a piano player who was wonderful but they made him sing, which was awful. Being tone deaf would help the audience immensely. I have been on Holland America, Princess, and even Carnival (although I wouldn't recommend them either) I have loved the first two. I heard so many people complain, almost everyone I met. Also directions to exit were barely posted, not even the floor number so we had to ask other guests or follow any line we saw. Speakers didn't usually work in our room. Directions for the next day weren't even printed. Plus events were canceled so eventually we stopped going. Never again on NCL!!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Nil
My friend who has not cruised wanted a 3 day experience. As a 4 time cruiser the food was appalling cold, hard to put a fork into and no taste, bland and unappetising. No beverage package available. My friend doesn’t have a credit card ... Read More
My friend who has not cruised wanted a 3 day experience. As a 4 time cruiser the food was appalling cold, hard to put a fork into and no taste, bland and unappetising. No beverage package available. My friend doesn’t have a credit card as was paying cash as her load and go card was not accepted everywhere else but P&O cruises. Beds hard pillows too soft. Staff unfriendly and not helpful except our cabin staff, 1 bar staff, spa staff and 1 pantry staff member. I also had the privilege of catching up with ex work members on the cruise for the same reason and also appalled by the cruise. Good thing was leaving the ship. On exiting I have never had to take my own bags off a ship until Jewel. I will never sail P&O again and word of mouth is a powerful tool. My survey has not received by email so I am voicing my dissatisfaction on behalf of me and ny friend. I have been informed jewel is being sold off but any P&O experience will not be on my radar. You need to go Royal Carrabien and a good experience and upgrade you services. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I will start with the positives - disembarkation at Sydney was fast and efficient. That's the positives taken care of! So now the ship and the cruise! The ships main problem is too many passengers and not enough public areas - so ... Read More
I will start with the positives - disembarkation at Sydney was fast and efficient. That's the positives taken care of! So now the ship and the cruise! The ships main problem is too many passengers and not enough public areas - so it is ALWAYS busy and finding a seat is not easy. Embarkation took over 3 hours for most people thanks to total disorganization at the port. At meal times with any time dining we were given a buzzer and told to come back when it buzzed - 40 minutes later it buzzed, so any time dining doesnt mean any time you want to dine, it means any time they want to seat you. The dining room was not full, they kept a lot of tables empty! Entertainment. What entertainment? In over 3 weeks there were just THREE stage shows with the singers and dancers and the rest of time they had VERY mediocre performers - for example an Asian Harmonica player had the first nights show in the theater and you have to ask yourself how entertaining could half an hour of a Harmonica player be? I will give you a hint, people were walking out after one tune and by the 4th more had left than remained! He also performed in other areas across the ship for the next week or so and the other artists that featured from then on were about as 'good'! The on board singing group were totally lacking in enthusiasm and ability. There is NO promenade deck! NEVER been on a ship without a deck to sit on and walk around the entire length of the ship - but Majestic doesn't have one. WHO on earth approved THAT design error? The coach supplied for our one Princess shore tour was old and smelled of petrol. We had trouble hearing the guide over the noise of the engine when it idled and the trip ended in a smelly awful market having driven past the beautiful shops of Orchard Road in Singapore. When our Mini suite balcony door was open, there was a hideous howling sound which made it impossible to leave it open at night. The noise was pointed out to the cabin steward on the first morning and yet was not fixed till the 18th day!! Our cabin was rarely cleaned before lunch and our friends cabin had a continuous smell of stale urine from day 1. This on a relatively NEW ship! Wines ran out long before the cruise ended and the one remaining red wine by the glass, a nasty, inferior and over priced drop was desperately offered from that point on. The wines werent even restocked when we made landfall. So many people tried to use the laundry to get tokens for the machines, but more often than not it charged their cruise card and didnt deliver tokens. I waited 40 minutes in the laundry for someone who I was told 4 times was on their way to arrive before giving up! An Elite member, who have their washing done for them as part of their loyalty program, was using the laundry on one occasion when I was there because she said it had taken FIVE days for her wash to come back when they sent it for the service wash - so much for loyalty. Having previously cruised with Princess we looked forward to the usual facilities and service and found neither up to their usual standard. The balcony on Majestics Mini Suite is substantially smaller than their other ships and despite the ship being less than two years old it felt shabby. When advised of the problems we had experienced, Princess offered us a pathetic $250 each towards a future cruise in compensation, which we turned down as it is clear Princess has lowered its standards across the board and none of their ships will be as they once were. So in closing, avoid Majestic Princess at all costs. AVOID Princess or severely lower your expectations because they are heading down the same road as their partner P & O. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
Spent 22 days on the Majestic and wish we had not spent a single night on board. The boarding was hell, the food wasnt very good and the any time dining simply didnt work out. Unless we ate at 5.45 we would have to wait ages for a ... Read More
Spent 22 days on the Majestic and wish we had not spent a single night on board. The boarding was hell, the food wasnt very good and the any time dining simply didnt work out. Unless we ate at 5.45 we would have to wait ages for a table even though they werent all full. The entertainment was so bad we only went to 5 shows over the entire three weeks and the Princess cruise dancers and singers only performed 3 times over the entire period. What a joke on a cruise ship. So many things didnt work as they should it is hard to remember them all. Several types of wine ran out and werent replaced even when we docked. The laundry token machines were always empty but still charged our cabin for the tokens we didnt get. Our room was only clean on the surface and was never tidied till lunch time each day - obviously the cabin steward had too many cabins to look after - probably due to a shortage of staff. The balcony door impersonated moaning minnie or a howling Banshee when it was open forcing us to keep it closed and make the extra payment for a balcony over an ocean view a total waste. Despite all that, Princess thought the problems we had had were worth $250 in future cruise deposits for each of us but if we wanted to accept their offer, we would have had to write back to them 16 days before they sent us the offer. I am one preferred customer (platinum) who will NEVER be traveling with Princess again. Now where is that phone number for Celebrity? Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
The disappointment started with the embarkation. The process did not go smoothly at all. I have an injured left leg and should not walk for far lengths. The airport provided a wheelchair and the cruiseline said they would provide a ... Read More
The disappointment started with the embarkation. The process did not go smoothly at all. I have an injured left leg and should not walk for far lengths. The airport provided a wheelchair and the cruiseline said they would provide a wheelchair as well. When I got there, there was not chair for me. The women say my orthotic boot and gave me Priority Boarding. The issue it, there was absolutely no crown control. There was ONE line for priority boarding which included both handicap and VIP guests. All the guests, not jus the VIP guests packed all of the lines, and people were even pushing me to get on the boat. I left and told them that I can not get in line and I was told that cannot control what their guests do!!! Get ready to be RUN OVER by wild Europeans on the Fantasia. Do not purchase their excursions. They say that people speak English but in reality, the accents are so thick that you will no understand them anyways. Deborah in Rome spoke very poor English and during the whole tour in Rome the microphones did not work at all. We could never hear her. We took 3 excursions- Rome, Pisa, and Monaco. In all 3, you have very limited time to actually STOP and enjoy a site, or take a picture, or enter a small shoppe. They are so concerned with you being back by 3pm, even if the boat doesnt leave until 5:30pm!!! Its better to take a taxi or do a local tour. MSC excursions are not worth it. Also, only ONE local destination offered free shuttle buses into the city center, I think it was La Spezia, but should be all cities. With dinning, they are far too strict. You have to be seated by 7pm and if you are not you can loose your place in dinning and have to eat at the buffet. The buffet is NOT wheelchair friendly. I was only using a wheelchair temporarily, not permanently, but still, no staff offered to help me. The cruise itself is not very wheelchair friendly, which made me feel very bad for people who are actually permanently disabled. For example, there is no wheelchair only elevators. There were actually not enough elevators. There are also no automatic doors throughout the entire ship so you have to rely on other people to help you through the doors. Also, the counters in the dinning room are far too high for anyone in a wheelchair to take a plate, see the food, and serve themselves. My husband had to help me every day, because the staff never assisted. Once, a kind waitor assisted me when he saw me limping with coffee. Definitely the worst part of our trip and what ruined our whole trip was when our cabin was flooded with water when a pipe burst at 2am. I woke up to water in our room in the middle of the night and had a panic attack. They later told us that we were LUCKY they had an extra room available for us to sleep in that night. They even wanted us to go back to the soiled room the next day. Our items were soiled with dirty pipe water and many of our items were not cleaned for when we were scheduled to disembark 2 days later. They refused to return our money for the price of our cabin for those 2 nights and refused to provide any compensation for our shoes or even let me fill our a complaint form. We have been trying to contact customer service for the pipe even specifcially but no one has returned our contacts. All in all, this cruise line is NOT wheelchair friendly, has no automatic doors or dinning assitance, and did not own up to their responsiblity for our cabin and items. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
This was my 3rd time on The Independence of the Seas, 6th time with Royal Caribbean and definitely my last. I was excited to see how they had renovated the ship as were the other 5 members of our party. How wrong we were. May I ... Read More
This was my 3rd time on The Independence of the Seas, 6th time with Royal Caribbean and definitely my last. I was excited to see how they had renovated the ship as were the other 5 members of our party. How wrong we were. May I point out I am usually not one to complain as I understand that sometimes things don't go to plan but we had a couple of main issues whilst onboard. -Drinks Packages & Shortage of Drinks Onboard Prior to setting sail I enquired about drinks packages, 4 of the party wished to purchase the Deluxe Package, myself the soda package and one of the party did not want a package at all. However, this is where the disappointment started. We were informed that due to new regulations it was either all or nothing. We did not want the drinks packages so that we could ‘drink excessively’ but more for the convenience of not having to sign for drinks on each purchase. Having being informed of new rules set by yourselves we ended up purchasing 4 Deluxe packages and 2 Royal Refreshment packages. This totalling £2821.84, £517.69 more than the package arrangement that we initially wanted. Further disappointment followed as on day 10 of the cruise, drinks began to run out. Only select beers, wines and sodas were available at the bars and pub. The pub eventually having no Peroni, San Miguel, Pinot Grigio, Tonic Water or Sprite Zero. Little alternatives were offered and we were left 4 days without our preferred drinks, which we had effectively paid for when we purchased our packages? -Overcrowding Another issue that was particularly apparent was the sheer overcrowding of the Independence during the 5 sea days. Having travelled before I understand that sea days are busier than those where we are in port. However, during this cruise it was noticeably worse than previous. Fellow guests began the reserving of sunbeds at 6:30am!!! This making it an unbeatable challenge to find any sunbeds after around 8:30am. Guests were sunbathing on the paths and sides of the pools and sunbeds were also so close that it was impossible to get onto them safely. I was extremely disappointed as for our party this holiday was about relaxing, which was impossible when we had to awake early to find a sunbed and there were no particularly peaceful areas to sunbathe. After speaking to fellow travellers we were not the only guests who found that the ship appeared overcrowded on this voyage. This overcrowding issue was also noted by guests in our party when trying to order speciality coffees at café promenade, with the wait being up to 25 minutes for a single coffee. A timeframe which I do not deem acceptable. The overcrowding issue also became apparent in the evenings before and after dinner, throughout all bars on the ship there was not one table or chair free for either before or after dinner drinks and the wait for being served was up to 30 minutes. From what we remember and understand about the Royal Caribbean brand this is not up to the usual standard, and it disappointed us, and was embarrassing with the first time cruisers. -The Stateroom Having staterooms located around the ship 7334, 7634 & 8220 we were disheartened to find that the cabins had not received any attention during the renovations earlier in the year. The same rusty bins, stained curtains and barely working TVs remained, issues which could’ve been resolved for little cost. This was slightly disappointing as stateroom 7334 could not use the TV, this was reported to guest services who later informed us that the TV was in working order, which it certainly was not. Our staterooms attendants for cabins 7334 & 7634 were also poor in comparison to previously cruises, leaving bins unemptied and tea making facilities were not replenished for up to 3 days at a time. This is not the usual standard and certainly not acceptable for Royal Caribbean. In summary, I have written to Royal Caribbean about the issues above, of which their response was 'Sorry but we have not broken any policies' and 'We never state when you purchase a drinks package that drinks will actually be available' I'm an emerald member and they can't even say 'Here's a free drink for those ones you missed out on' We paid £17,000+ for this cruise and left feeling extremely disappointed and sorry for those that have already booked to travel on this cruise in the future. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This cruise chose us, as we received an email with a great price and $700 cabin credit, it was a great itinerary and not Australian school holidays, although we always vowed we would never go on this ship! but it was a good deal so why ... Read More
This cruise chose us, as we received an email with a great price and $700 cabin credit, it was a great itinerary and not Australian school holidays, although we always vowed we would never go on this ship! but it was a good deal so why not, we had to book through a travel agent as this was the terms, we picked our cabin where we like to be and then waited and waited for June to come. We weren't that excited as we were worried about the ship but we were excited for the fact we were going to Singapore for four days prior and staying at Marina Bay Sands. Embarkation day arrived and we never board early usually in the final group, all good, first step onto ship and the darkness hit, decor very dark and gloomy, but I did love the lift lobbies lots of room and back from the stairs and the lifts do travel fast. Our room, perfect location as we chose it,never want an upgrade as it could be a downgrade from what we like. Head straight for the bathroom and nearly hit the walll as I slid along, not to worry must have stepped on some water somewhere, now what is that huge plastic bag on the floor near the bed with a curtain in it? turn on the lamps one doesn't work, hit the balcony, gosh be careful where you step, rusted paint scrapings everywhere, chairs look painted and wet, oh they are!!! Wet paint and paint scrapings all over them, separation wall between balconies flapping, not even secured, back into cabin slip my shoes off, oops!!! Feet splashing into water, ahhh that's why I nearly took a tumble into bathroom. By now husband quite angry contacts guests services and we have the assistant housekeeping manager in our room quickly.And this is where 19 days of dry dock apologies start and this was only our room. We found the decor on this ship strange, there is French, Egyptian,Roman and whatever else with a darkness to it. Food by no means great, the entertainers were quite good although the stage shows were not to our liking at all, final night arrives our duty free not in our cabin, maybe we have to pick it up ourselves so we head to guest services to make the enquiry only to be told it has been delivered to our room, we say we didn't see it anywhere, more checks, yes it has been delivered therefore we offer to have another look, no where to be found, phone guest services insisting it has been delivered we offer for them to look, no they discover it has not been delivered, crew are exceptional liars on this ship. Our eleventh cruise and first and last on carnival, never again, first impressions last. We were given an extra $170 cabin credit. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This cruise and the two following cruises on June 1 and June 6 were booked as an offering by Cruise 1st on a back to back basis, AND SHOULD NEVER HAVE BEEN OFFERED TO UK CUSTOMERS. The whole ship, including the food, and entertainment, ... Read More
This cruise and the two following cruises on June 1 and June 6 were booked as an offering by Cruise 1st on a back to back basis, AND SHOULD NEVER HAVE BEEN OFFERED TO UK CUSTOMERS. The whole ship, including the food, and entertainment, was designed and set up to cater for Chinese and other Asian guests, NOT US. SIMPLY NOT UP TO STANDARD AND VERY VERY DISAPPOINTING. Noise level on board and in the Windjammer totally unacceptable from the 4000 Chinese guests. We only found out about an english menu being available at HongKong airport on the way home from other miserable UK guests who, like us had to wait for 11 hours minimum to get the flight home. This menu was never offered to us in any of the 4 restaurants and consequently we did not know of its existence. I managed to get a ships wheel chair for my partner who has limited mobility but when we got back to HongKong at the end of the first leg we were refused permission to take it off the ship to re-board in Shenzhen. THREFORE WE REFUSED TO GET OFF. So we stayed on whilst the ship was moved along with another couple. We did not need our Chinese visas at all AND ALL THE BRITISH GUESTS WHO HAD THE TRAUMA OF GETTING OFF AND ON COULD ALL HAVE STAYED ON BOARD AND NOT BE DISTURBED. SOME EVEN HAD TO CHANGE CABIN. We all had to attend three safety assemblies conducted in Chinese, get three boarding passes, and register our credit cards three times, ALL TOTALLY UNNECESSARY WITH GOOD ORGANISATION AND WE SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN DISTURBED IN THIS WAY. . The trips off the ship were badly over-priced and I really object to paying USD 14.15 for a single glass of red wine. When we got to Okinawa for an overnight stay on-board the shuttle bus from the ship into the city centre was only advised as running on the evening of arrival AND NO MENTION OF THE NEXT DAY. This would have meant getting off the ship close to darkness. I managed to find out that this was not true and that the shuttle was running the next day and changed my tickets. SOME OF YOUR UK CUSTOMERS WERE REFUSED THIS CHANGE WHEN THEY ASKED TO DO SO. The two theatre performances that we attended were so poor that we walked out both times and never came back. Typical example of the poor food is that when a roast joint was made available there was only gravy, mint jelly and mashed potato available to have with it. No roast potatoes yorkshires, and cooked vegetables, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. Most days any chips on offer were stone cold in seconds, and of the type offered by Macdonalds, SIMPLY NOT ACCEPTABLE. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018

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