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112 MSC Cruises Genoa Cruise Reviews

I have been on many cruises over the years with many different cruise lines and never felt the need to review any of them as they all tend to be pretty similar but I really felt I should review MSC as the experience was so different from ... Read More
I have been on many cruises over the years with many different cruise lines and never felt the need to review any of them as they all tend to be pretty similar but I really felt I should review MSC as the experience was so different from anything I have ever experienced. This was our first encounter with MSC and as it was only for 3 nights we thought it would be a good taster of what to expect if we decided to book in future. We flew to Genoa the day before and did an overnight stay in a local hotel, the details we had received from MSC which were very limited stated the check in opened at 11.00 so we arrived at mid day. We were met by what could only be described as chaos, there were 1500 people being herded like cattle in to a tiny dilapidated terminal building with no one from MSC on hand to help. We were issued with a number and told to wait until our number was called, three and a half hours later! yes we stood there for three and a half hours! our number was called so we followed the crowds to an escalator but at the top of the escalator there was another huge queue which was so large it prevented people on the escalator from getting off, people were being crushed at the top and its amazing that no one was seriously hurt. We finally made it on board at 16.00, the time the ship was supposed to sail at. it took a further hour to get everyone on board and we finally set sail at 17.10, there had to be two muster drills as most of the passengers had missed the original one scheduled for 15.45. The second one was done as we sailed out of port. We then had to go to accounts to register a credit card against our cabin as the shore staff didn't have time to do this at check in. The on board experience is pretty similar to most cruise lines with the exception of the dining experience. You are issued with a table number and on arrival at the main dining room you have to go and find it, you are not escorted to your table. The staff are surly and slow and the meals consist of a selection of 7 courses so expect to be sat at your table for well over two hours even if you only order 3 courses. The staff seem to stand around in groups of 5 or 6 chatting and generally having a good time with no regard to passengers. There is no coffee or tea served at the table and you have to pay for the water, if you want tea or coffee you have to go to the buffet after your meal which we found quite bizarre. The buffet itself was awful, the worst we've experienced, the four selections were the same every day in the evening and at breakfast you could not get in, 1500 passengers and 300 seats. People would be five deep at the buffet then they would disperse all over the ship trying to find somewhere to sit and eat. Again the staff stand around in groups doing nothing, the tables get cleared every now and again and they do not serve you drinks at the table, you go and get your own, I am not exactly sure what the staff are there for other than to push past passengers and scowl at them. The food was bland and cold, the only good thing was the pizza station out on deck which again had large queues due to it being under staffed but the pizzas were great. I should also mention MSCs tendering process which was on par with everything else on board. The system is to collect a number from reception which denotes what time your tender leaves. What actually happens in reality is that as soon as the first tender is ready 1500 people do a cavalry charge towards the life boats again with no one from MSC in charge, there are staff around but they're just not interested in anything that is happening around them, it's a theme that is repeated at every level throughout the ship. On the final night our bill was supposed to be delivered to our cabin but it never arrived. We went to accounts the following morning but the queue was so huge we decided to leave it. There were only two staff on the accounts desk on the morning of disembarkation, it's as though they weren't expecting people to pay their bills on departure day! There were however plenty of staff stood around observing the mayhem but doing nothing about it, again quite bizarre. I'm not suggesting that you shouldn't cruise with MSC as a lot of the things they do are good and quite different but I would suggest that if you do decide to book then you should retain a good sense of humor and take it for what it is, its just the way they do it and their passenger levels would suggest it's quite popular. I posted this review just to let people know how very different MSC are as a cruise company, I personally would not book with them again but I am glad I experienced a very different way of cruising. Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
In March this year [2014] my husband and I joined a fly, stay, cruise package on the MSC Fantasia which included return flights to Italy, overnight accommodation in Genoa, transfers and a 36 night cruise. We chose MSC because the tour ... Read More
In March this year [2014] my husband and I joined a fly, stay, cruise package on the MSC Fantasia which included return flights to Italy, overnight accommodation in Genoa, transfers and a 36 night cruise. We chose MSC because the tour itinerary sounded great even though we had already visited many of the ports. We upgraded to a category B2, [balcony cabin with guaranteed unobstructed views] which in our cruise brochure appeared to be cabins in the bow of deck 9 plus all of decks 10, 11 and 12. On booking the cruise we made just 2 requests. We were told that we couldn't book a particular cabin or deck so we asked if we could have a cabin on any deck on or above 10 and anywhere mid ship to stern Being 4 back to back cruises and with hundreds of cabins to choose from we didn't see this as an unreasonable request, booked months before sailing. Our second request was for 1st dinner sitting due to a medical condition which made 9pm dining unsuitable. Three weeks before our departure date we received our documentation. We had been allocated a cabin in the bow of deck 9 and second dinner sitting. To cut a long story short neither our travel agent nor their supplier could get any satisfaction from MSC re a cabin change. I dealt directly with MSC in Australia to have the meal sitting changed. Just days before departure MSC went to the ridiculous length of making me complete a 'special needs' form even though I had a letter from my doctor. It wasn't until the day before departure that we received notification that we could go to first dinner sitting. On board the cabin was reasonable but we had no view at all unless standing as there was a metal balcony wall obstructing all views whilst sitting! On viewing the cabin categories in the on-board ship information all of deck 9 was graded the same category and we could get no answers as to why we paid more for our cabin with obstructed views whilst so called B1 [cheaper] cabins on deck 9 had glass balcony walls with unobstructed views! The service was terrible, it took 3 days to have a broken catch on the door to the balcony repaired whilst we endured broken nights sleep with the wind roaring through the door gap. Many of the staff were unfriendly and unhelpful. The food was, at best, average with only 2 main course choices if you didn't eat fish or vegetarian and all serves were very small. If you don't drink alcohol, water had to be paid for, with a 15% service fee in the main dining room. To call it “fine dining” was a joke, we've had better meals served at local hotels and clubs. The bistro food was either floating in gravy or sauce or was typical takeaway greasy fast food, the exception being the cold meat and cheeses, the salad bar and the very nice dessert bar. The only alternative was Tex Mex restaurant where there was an additional charge of 14 Euro, a price you had to pay if you wanted a steak. The staff take no responsibility for any discrepancies. The internet is very expensive and runs at snails pace if at all and you are charged by the minute, not data download. I purchased 100 minutes just to keep up with emails which was wiped off the screen after 30 minutes use. When I questioned the staff at the customer relations desk I was told that there was nothing they could do and would refer the matter to their IT department so I had to purchase another 60 minutes. Three day before the end of our cruise they agreed it was their error but still only credited back 30 minutes which was useless as I still had 30 minutes of the extra time I had to buy. We pre booked many of our shore excursions and when we checked our account we had been overcharged. Nothing they could do about it, we'd have to contact their head office in Italy when we got home. When you board the ship you have to surrender your passport and are given a receipt. They then managed to loose an Australian woman’s passport and refused to accept that they were at fault saying she must still have it even though she still had her receipt. They eventually accepted responsibility and just a couple of days before the end of the cruise took the passenger into the Australian Embassy in the next port of call for a temporary passport and the passport was never found! The on-board entertainment was poor, the same 40 minute show was repeated cruise after cruise, the only English speaking channel on the TV was 24hr news on CNN or the BBC. Any movie cost 17 euro to watch. There was however a great number of bars and a smoke filled casino, neither of which appealed. Children, who travel for free, could spend the entire cruise at the children’s club which stayed open until 11pm for the little ones and midnight for the older children. Then they could then run up and down the corridors calling out and banging doors. To sum up, if you want a relaxing holiday with fine dining, first class shows and cultural activities don't cruise with MSC. However if you're not fussy about what food you're served nor what entertainment is on offer, you enjoy loud conversations and rude staff and want a care free holiday with someone else looking after the children whilst you frequent the many bars or the casino then MSC is the cruise company for you. I did email my concerns about our cabin to the Australian branch of MSC cruises who forwarded it to the head office in Italy. I received an acknowledgement of receipt of the email from head office which stated that it “would be investigated promptly by our dedicated Customer Care Team and a reply will be sent to you shortly”. That email was dated 16/05/14 and still I have heard nothing. Typical of MSC cruises. Other people we spoke to on the cruise said they also would never sail with MSC again, even a couple who had never sailed with MSC previously but who had their ocean view cabin upgraded to a B2 cabin on deck 12 for their 2 back to back cruises. The saddest part was the number of first time cruisers who said they would never cruise again after their experience with MSC. We love cruising and did our best to assure them that MSC was not typical of all cruise lines. The many other cruises we have done, particularly Celebrity and Princess were fantastic, whilst other passengers praised Royal Caribbean and Holland America. I just wish that I had taken notice of the cruise reviews of the MSC Fantasia before we booked our trip. Of the over 200 Australian passengers who were on the cruise, many that we spoke to said they would never cruise MSC again and now I see that MSC is coming to Australia in 2015, good luck to prospective passengers. Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
We chose MSC because they were the only cruise line we could find sailing on the dates we needed. The balcony cabin was very good but the bathroom tiny and smelt of mould. None of us would chose MSC again. This was our 5th cruise. The ... Read More
We chose MSC because they were the only cruise line we could find sailing on the dates we needed. The balcony cabin was very good but the bathroom tiny and smelt of mould. None of us would chose MSC again. This was our 5th cruise. The ship was amazing on first impressions but you get lost and confused very easily and the crew are not very helpful, (there are exceptions of course). It almost seemed that they were too scared of being told off if they stopped to talk to you which happened to one waiter we were talking to. I found this very rude. The only person to pay you any attention was the photographer and they became annoying very quickly! The red velvet restaurant was very squashed up and it did not make for a nice dinning experience, I constantly had to move my chair so wait staff could get by. The food court area was 10 times worse! I like the larger cruise ships but this one had way too many passengers (3500) and we were constantly avoiding people or waiting for someone to leave a lounge area so we could sit. There were a couple of areas that were always empty because they had a view of the life rafts! There is an amazing area called liquid lounge on deck 16, which has full length windows and is great for watching the world go by. Unfortunately the bar is not open during the day and it is a disco at night. We went there to watch the ship dock and leave and there was rarely any one else there, this was a complete waste of this space. The thing that upset us the most though was having to pay for everything on board including water, unless you want to go up and down to the food court to get water from the machine there. I know drinks are not included in your cruise ticket but water should be! We were also charged a tip of 7 euro per person per cabin each day for tips and an automatic donation to unesco, this was just added to our cruise card. I don't mind tipping for good service, but there were only 2 people I would say gave something near good service on the entire 7 days. Never saw a maître d in the dinning room, even on the 2 formal nights. The lifts are whole other experience and are great if you aren't in a hurry to get anywhere, they should supply chairs to sit in while you watch them pass your floor by in both directions. Bottom line for Aussies is factor in at least an extra $1000.00 for just the basic drinks and tours, if you like to sit by the pool with cocktails or even a decent coffee take more money! Or simply choose another cruise company! you will have a more enjoyable and relaxing time. The old saying that you get what you pay for is so true. It started out good value but sure didn't end that way.   Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
Where to start? My wife and I have done 15 cruises with many cruise lines over the last 10 years, 2 star to 6 star. Without a doubt MSC Fantasia has been the worst cruise we have ever done. We left Brisbane and arrived in Genoa at the Best ... Read More
Where to start? My wife and I have done 15 cruises with many cruise lines over the last 10 years, 2 star to 6 star. Without a doubt MSC Fantasia has been the worst cruise we have ever done. We left Brisbane and arrived in Genoa at the Best Western Hotel with 2 bus loads of Australians all at the same time in a very compact and cheap hotel. Breakfast was provided and was done well. Genoa was great fantastic architecture and food. Next day we were bused to the port in Genoa for checkin which was chaos till we went through the process and went to our cabin which was a balcony cabin on deck 9. Ok but a bit on the small side compared to other ships we have been on. Bed was Hard and lumpy. Bags turned up ok, no problems. No cabin steward to be seen, he avoided us as much as possible, don’t know his name as he didn’t introduce himself. Our room was not serviced so we complained to the reception but our cabin steward blamed us as he said we had a “don’t disturb” sign out. We don’t know where that sign is? As this was a new ship overall in fair condition apart from the broken, warn balcony furniture and the stained hard couch. No wash cloths, or robes and no bottled water which had to be bought from the mini bar or on shore. Will be interesting to see this ship in a few years as it is already showing signs of ware and poor maintenance. Other passengers were mostly Germans, Italians, French, Chinese, Japanese and English who were usually difficult, pushy, rude, bad mannered and bad natured people. Not warm and polite but hostile and demanding. They don’t line up and wait their turn. Mostly retired couples with a small number of young families. We decided to go to the Zanzibar Buffet for lunch. Good luck finding a seat as its was a free for all. Getting around the ship was not easy as there were no maps to follow and it was hard to find your way. around. The food was a shock as it was very poor quality, Pizza, pasta and salad. I thought Italians could cook but not on this ship. Everything on this ship was at a price. Water, coffee, ice cream, movies, saunas you name it everything was about money. The quality of food and service was awful, same everyday . The first night we were dined in the Il Cerchio D’oro Restaurant which was situated behind the Red Velvet Restaurant, so you had to go over the Red Velvet Restaurant to get to Il Cerchio D’oro Restaurant. Our waiter did not introduce himself which is the unusual thing to do. The food was mostly inedible.It was the worst food we have ever had anywhere on land or at sea. This was the case everyday, everywhere we ate and I think this was the only cruise I have actually lost weight. The menu was the same everyday in the buffet for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Usually served cold and very poor standard. We tried the Tex Mex specialty Restaurant which specialised in Mexican and steaks which we found quite good quality food and the prices were 14 euro for a steak and average of 4 to 8 euro for a course of Mexican. The crew is mostly Indonesian and doesn’t it show with their attitude for passengers. Hostile would describe their attitude. waiters are hopeless as they often get orders wrong even though they understood English, They were passive aggressive and usually unpleasant. There was little of entertainment available other than a piano player and a singer in the bars, there were big shows but short. Alcohol prices were not cheap as they want you to buy their Wine packages which were per couple, per cabin which worked out at 40 Euro a day. You have to drink a lot to get your monies worth so beware. Hard to find a toilet as there are very few, usually dirty and few people wash their hands or uses the hand sanitiser before meals and they love to handle the food at the buffet rather than the tongs supplied. Hard to use the spas and pools as the Germans seem to live in them. The Gym was the smallest one I have ever seen on any ship. Excursions were also expensive and not good value. Again in many languages which can become tedious. We booked an excursion in Haifa to the Bahai Temple which was closed due to a Holy Day, so was the Mt Carmel Church, but the excursion went ahead anyway. The tour guide spent most of his time talking about the “Holocost” and rambled a lot about himself. We bought a Shuttle bus ticket in Barcelona from the port to the centre of town for 8.50 Euro which was a 4 minute ride to the edge of the port not to the centre of town. Internet costs compared to other ships we have been on, so you have to be prepared before you log on, write your emails before hand. There was WiFi available in the cabin but it was very slow and will cost you money if you don,t go to the wifi stations in the public areas with a WiFi station sign. The more time you buy there is a discount available. Read the reviews as MSC rates badly, I wouldn’t go on this cruise if it was for free. Never again MSC.   Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
We sailed from Genoa to Cape Town departing 25 October. Embarkation was chaotic and despite being a member of the MSC club we were denied priority boarding and it took over 2 hours. Upon arrival aboard at 17h50 we found that the Lifeboat ... Read More
We sailed from Genoa to Cape Town departing 25 October. Embarkation was chaotic and despite being a member of the MSC club we were denied priority boarding and it took over 2 hours. Upon arrival aboard at 17h50 we found that the Lifeboat drill had already taken place at 17h30 even though over 200 passengers had still not embarked. We received a letter in our cabin mildly rebuking us for not attending the drill and advising we were expected to attend a further drill next day at 12h30 in Villefranche. We arrived back at the port in good time for the last tender at 12 noon. Embarkation then took an hour and in consequence missed the second boat drill held at 12h30 whilst many passengers were still ashore. This is what is known as a re-positioning voyage because MSC has to move the vessel from Europe to S. Africa for the summer season in the southern hemisphere. Consequently they price the cruise at what appears to be good value but this is where the value ends. In order to recoup the money they then rip off passengers at every opportunity. In Valencia they announced that the city centre was a 15 minute bus ride away and that they had therefore organised a shuttle bus at a price of 15.50 euros per person. Upon disembarkation we found that the city of Valencia runs a similar public service for 3.00 euros return. We arrived in Valencia at 13h00 on a Sunday. Spain is a very religious country and therefore everything is closed. What idiot at MSC scheduled this call on such a day? No such shuttle bus was offered at any of the other ports of call despite the fact that most are located a considerable distance from where the ship docks and in some cases taxis are not allowed to enter the docks so passengers must walk to the dock gates, sometimes as much as 1 km. Any request to the reception staff for details of the next port are met with an aggressive reply and no information. Either they are not worthy of the job or are instructed by MSC not to answer such question unless the passenger has purchased an MSC Shore Excursion at exorbitant prices. A "service charge" is added to your account each but this will be deleted if you insist but for passengers booking in S. Africa this charge is collected before travel and therefore cannot be deleted. In addition 15% is added to the cost of anything purchased on board including purchases made from the mini bar, on board shops, ice cream parlour etc. It is not possible to purchase over-the-counter medicines like aspirin without first consulting the doctor at a cost of 600 euros.I made a similar trip on the Sinfonia last year in the opposite direction when all prices were in US$s but now they simply change the dollar price to euros at par making all costs about 40% dearer. I could go on and on but think this report is now long enough. My only advise is not to take an MSC cruise but especially one designated as a "Grand Cruise" Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
This ship is worse than the Divina! The food that we ate in the restaurant was the same as the Divina on the same day. But the food was cold when it was supposed to be hot. Boring. Thank goodness for the Indonesian waiter: always a smile ... Read More
This ship is worse than the Divina! The food that we ate in the restaurant was the same as the Divina on the same day. But the food was cold when it was supposed to be hot. Boring. Thank goodness for the Indonesian waiter: always a smile for his Australian table. Tried to be efficient but the food was slow coming and cold. Divina wins points here. The Maitre D' was past his use by date. Could not smile. In fact it was a game we Aussies played to see if we could get a smile out of him. Managed by exception. Often the tours we wanted to go on were not available because "there were not enough people!" They were mostly expensive: we could have done better tours through research on both the Devina and Splendida. The ship was supposed to go to Palermo but it didn't. Went to Tunis instead. Either our cabin was dirty or our food was contaminated by other pax not using the tongs available but using their hands. Both my wife and I ended up with very heavy chest infections. When I opened the door to the cabin at night I was able to get a good night's sleep. Having had issues on the Devina my suggestion is that neither ship is worth the money.   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
After cruising the Eastern Mediterranean on the MSC Musica we boarded the Fantasia in Genoa with high expectations. Ther were no towels in the cabin on arrival and we had to chase around to find some. They then took 3 days to supply a ... Read More
After cruising the Eastern Mediterranean on the MSC Musica we boarded the Fantasia in Genoa with high expectations. Ther were no towels in the cabin on arrival and we had to chase around to find some. They then took 3 days to supply a bath mat. Our waiter in the dining room could not get the orders right which caused delays not only to us but on other tables. The bistro was dirty and the overall service was lacking. We had a great cruise on the Musica but were let down by the Fantasias service and attention to details. Also the tours offered by MSC on the western Mediteranean leave a lot to be desired we do not like being loked in a non airconditioned room and subjected to high pressure to buy carpets. Also we problems occured with the embarkation after one tour the crew could organnize a safe method of informing and directing passengers to the new embarkation point. At disembartion in Genoa we were asked to pick up our passports on the 16th decfk but on arrival there was no ships representative in attendance and no information for 1.5 hours. Read Less
Sail Date October 2012
If English is your first language avoid, avoid, avoid MSC I am going to try and keep this as concise as possible, at times it will seem like a sketch from the sitcom Faulty Towers, with a the customer services manager playing the role of ... Read More
If English is your first language avoid, avoid, avoid MSC I am going to try and keep this as concise as possible, at times it will seem like a sketch from the sitcom Faulty Towers, with a the customer services manager playing the role of Basil Faulty. The ship: Fantastic, well maintained and pristine throughout. The bars music and decor were relaxing and well stocked, apart from the day at sea never felt crowded The room: We had an inside cabin, was comfortable and well equipped with a good hot shower. Though we could not get ours cleaned properly, or our mini-bar filled. But I will come to that later. Breakfast: A very large selection of choices, sadly as they are cooking for so many nationalities they didn't always get it right. The breakfast area is very well staffed, but don't expect a food half eaten, on a plate to still be on the table if you go for a coffee. Daytime Food: available during the day was limited, and the drinks from the coolers where not good and often turned off, I guess this was done to encourage you to spend money at the Bars. Evening Meal: If you like Italian food you will love it, a different choice every night, though fairly bland. The kids choice is very very basic, I tried to get my Daughter just pasta and cheese, after a long discussion four visits from 3 different waiters, none of who spoke sufficient English to interpret our request we ended up with a red hot dish of tagliatellele . We gave up, she had chips. Drinks: Very Expensive: Get the Drinks package; we did. We are not big drinkers, however a few drinks round the pool, one before dinner, wine with dinner, and a couple of cocktails in the bar we would have spent £100 per day. Entertainment: Some good some bad, again they are trying to cater for all nationality's it just doesn't work very well. The Bingo caller took 60 seconds per number due to having to read it in every language. Staff: Poor you always got a smile from the cabin crew, after that good luck, the bar staff and waitresses were miserable, and security was just rude and ignorant. Only two or three of the staff that we met could speak English well enough to understand our order first time. The only way I can describe it; imagine having to talk to really bad Indian call centre for everything you need. It drove us nuts. Even something as simple as a can of coke became a major negotiation. Ok the funny bit: Well it is now; the problems we had on board were on the whole minor, however it was the inability of MSC to sort them out that has caused me to put pen to paper in this manner. We could not get our room cleaned properly; dirty cups and plates with food on them were left for 4 days. They kept charging us for the mini-bar that was included in our package, I was robbed in Tunisia whilst standing next to the coach that MSC had arranged for the excursion, the tickets for the excursion never arrived when they should have, and they always missed out our Daughter. We had room keys cancelled, staff that would blatantly lie when you caught them out. And to top it off a can of RED COKE!!! I could not have this served at my table for dinner, because they said it was not in my package, even though we had the most expensive drinks package available. After my starter every night I had to get up from my table walk to one of the bars on the ship get two cans of coke using my drinks package and then take them back to the table. THE COMPLAINT: As I had already been to reception 3 times finance twice, and still not managed to get any of the issues sorted. I asked to see the customer service Manager, A man who went by the name of Marcello. I was ushered into his office, He was dressed like a Captain and he started by calling MR John (which is not my name) and telling me whilst slapping his epaulets, that he was the captain of the people on this ship and whatever he said goes, After explaining the above issues he got on the phone and spoke to the various departments with lots of Pronto, Pronto and finished by telling me it was all sorted. He also said I would have no further problem as his staff shook when they saw him or heard his voice. He also said that he would meet me at the restaurant to make sure that for the rest of the week I would have a can of coke on my table. Theft/ Robbery: I also told him that I had been robbed in Tunisia, whilst on one of MSCs tours, he threw his head back laughed, and said "Mr John, I cannot be expected to look after you money whilst you are on holiday, do you know how much theft and robbery goes on, on this ship with all these staff and passengers" I pointed out that that was not mentioned in the brochure when we booked. The Restaurant: When Marcello arrived at the restaurant that night, he told the waiters to make sure I had the Coke (nobody seemed to be shaking). After a lot of conversation in Italian he came across and said that he could not arrange this as it was impossible to give me a can on my package though he did say I could continue to go to the Bar. The Americans sat opposite us on our table where having no problems being served with cans as apparently they were on the soft drinks only package which had only cost £40 for the week, as a pose to our £75 per day. Disappearing Receptionist: We still had not had our cabin cleaned, got our tickets without fighting for them, we were still being charged for our Mini-Bar and still no Coke. I went back down to reception and explained it to the girl there that I just wanted my room cleaned, during our conversation, she went off to get something and then disappeared after 5 min I asked the other staff were she had gone they looked at me like I was mad, and told me she had gone on a break. Marcello Again: I asked to see Marcello again they told me that he could not see me until the Tuesday, I was due to leave the ship on the Sunday. Eventually another appointment was made for that afternoon at 5 O'clock, I duly arrived after waiting for twenty minutes I was informed that he would not see me, as all of my issues I had raised had been dealt with. Impotent After a lot of argument with the reception I was finally shown in to Marcello's office where again I was greeted as "MR John" after explaining again that not one thing that he said he would sort out had been done he explained that he was very important on his ship stressing the word Important three times, I suggested you mean impotent, yes that's it he said standing up straight and announcing proudly "I am impotent on this ship" and that really sums up the communication problems. He did ask me to give MSC another chance but we are not so sure. Conclusion: I had a great holiday; this was despite MSC not because of them. Though the problems that I encountered where minor in the scale of things, because of the inability of MSC to sort them out it caused a great deal of stress between myself and my partner, we rarely argue but had three with MSC. Everything from the check in to the departure is shambolic, comical even. This starts when they can't find your name on the airport transfer you are left sitting on a bus for over an hour waiting to go to the ship with blazing hot sun no air-con and no information ; We made friends with Americans, Australians Greeks and some Belgians, all had similar feelings. And all stated that they would not travel with MSC again. I hope they do get their act together in the future as the ships are fantastic but for now if you have read this and are English speaking avoid MSC. Or you will be sorry If the captain of the people Marcello is not listened to by his own staff, and is not authorised to override ridiculous rules, then what chance does the customer have. Read Less
Sail Date July 2012
Kids Zone: MSC is not a kid friendly cruise for English speaking passengers. Last summer we took a Royal Caribbean cruise and my kids loved the kid's club so much that we could barely drag them out; however, this is not the case ... Read More
Kids Zone: MSC is not a kid friendly cruise for English speaking passengers. Last summer we took a Royal Caribbean cruise and my kids loved the kid's club so much that we could barely drag them out; however, this is not the case with the MSC cruise line. The staff keep the children in one small room playing the same movie over and over again in "Italian only". If the kids do not want to watch the movie, the only other option is to either play table soccer (only one table) or the Wii (only one Wii console). This makes for a very boring few hours. My children begged me not to go back after just one experience. Entertainment: I was surprised to find out that MSC offers very few activities throughout the day (both sea days or at port). If you like to do something other than a 30 minute dance lesson, then choose a different cruise line. Although I have to say that at least two of the 6 night shows were very captivating. Food: The breakfast and lunch buffet were fantastic. They offered a variety of foods that both my kids and I really enjoyed. Dinner on the other hand was very lacking both in choices and flavor. Voyager of the Seas -Royal Caribbean had such tasty meals EVERY night that I looked forward to dinner on MSC Splendida, only to be let down night after night. I could probably name only a handful of dishes on MSC that were actually appetizing. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
I went on an 11 day cruise from Genoa. I was looking forward to the cruise with my friends and was dismayed by the treatment we received. We got on the boat and did not know we had to pay for our own water. We had to wait 2 days for MSC ... Read More
I went on an 11 day cruise from Genoa. I was looking forward to the cruise with my friends and was dismayed by the treatment we received. We got on the boat and did not know we had to pay for our own water. We had to wait 2 days for MSC to say it was ok for my roommate and I to receive tickets for water. My roommate's mattress was bad, but after two days our room stewardess did take care of the problem. The language barrier on the ship is just awful, in some cases trying to explain a problem is a hassle. The food was sub-par, you would think it is in Italy and Spain so the food would be much better, but the buffet sucked and was cold. The selection in the dining room were just okay, but in some cases it just was not what someone wanted to eat. The waiter we had in the beginning was rude and seemed as if he did not like Americans. He was replaced by a much nicer waiter and the Maitre De made sure we were taken care of after complaining about the first waiter. Many of the people on the boat were just plain rude. The excursions are over-priced we toured Rome for about $30 instead of the $112 the ship offered and saw everything. I enjoyed the ports we went to all except the Canary Islands, I would have rather spent more time in Rome. I have seen better entertainment done by street performers, but the contortionists were pretty good. The cruise was not for anyone 40 and under, so there was nothing too much to do when we were at sea. My roommate told someone at the service desk how she felt about the cruise director and the guest relations representative told her how her view was wrong. I mean seriously, how can someone tell me how to feel about my reaction to the way I was treated. I have no desire to cruise with MSC ever again even if it was free. Read Less
Sail Date November 2011
The ship was very clean, staff was good, cabins better than average. The food was 60% poor, 30% ok and 10% really good. You were fine if you filled up on the pasta which was good most of the time. The seafood was always over cooked and ... Read More
The ship was very clean, staff was good, cabins better than average. The food was 60% poor, 30% ok and 10% really good. You were fine if you filled up on the pasta which was good most of the time. The seafood was always over cooked and dry. The meat very thin and covered in gravy to hide the lack of flavor. One night I ordered Osa Buca and I got a bone the size of a saucer with one bite of meat. I asked for some with meat AND THEY GOT IT FOR ME. THEY TRIED TO CHARGE FOR WATER.I insisted that my table was not going to pay for water that was free on the buffet. I said I would take our glasses upstairs and fill them if necessary. The head guy who asked if we were American and then said we could have free water. The ship charged for the use of the sauna and the steam room. The hot tubs were never hot, only like warm. People had babies and toddlers in the hot tubs with no swim diapers on. The pillows were very lumpy. We kept asking for better ones but after 8 no luck. I would not ask my dog to sleep on a pillow that bad. The entertainment was rather unique. I liked it. They had a mine, a man that did shadow hand puppets, acrobats, and dancers and singers. The cruise was less money so I guess you get what you pay for. Read Less
Sail Date November 2011
When we booked this cruise we were flying from Gatwick to Genoa, about 20 minutes transfer from the port. This was one of the deciding factors when picking this cruise as long transfers are really difficult for me. However, 9 days before ... Read More
When we booked this cruise we were flying from Gatwick to Genoa, about 20 minutes transfer from the port. This was one of the deciding factors when picking this cruise as long transfers are really difficult for me. However, 9 days before we travelled we got the tickets and were informed that we were now flying from Heathrow into Milan Malpensa airport - 2.5 hours transfer time to the port. Need less to say we were not impressed! It is important to point out that we booked through Virgin Cruises, so it is not clear who was responsible for the fact that we only discovered the change 9 days before we sailed. However, the change was still unacceptable. Anyway, when we arived at Milan airport we were met by the MSC rep (very friendly) who informaed us that we would have an hour wait before we left as we were waiting for another 2 people on a later flight. Finally we arrived at the port and were directed to the boat in a rather haphazard manner. We received our room cards and were informed that we would be eating in the second sitting, even though we had requested 1st sitting. We were told to sort this out with reception, which we duly did. One of the receptionist was quite rude and was very quick to point out that 'requests cannot be guaranteed'. Luckily another receptionis (Lucia) was very polite and said we should go and see the restaurant manager who would probably be able to change it for us. This we did and we were indeed changed to 1st sitting with no problems. This bodes the question why were we not given the sitting we requested to start with??? What a pointless waste of time for everyone! On the plus side, the food and service at dinner was excellent, with them very helpfully accomadating my gluten free requirements. Also the evening entertainment (although at times resembling a trip to Butlins), was very good, especially the shows in the Broadway Theatre. Also the room was much bigger and nicer than I expected, with a comfortable, large bed and lots of storage space (including a safe and lots of hanging space). There was also a hairdryer, which was v handy. Unfortunately the staff at breakfast were not so friendly, in fact pretty indifferent I would say an the choice was a bit limited and got very boring by the end of the week. The 2 excursions we did were pretty good, although v expensive, and even coach transfers out of the port were very pricey. Just as we were beginning to think it wasn't too bad though, we got our instructions for leaving the boat on the last day. Essentially we were turfed off at 9:15am and transferred to the airport...even though our flight was not until 7pm. So, 7 hours in Milan Malpensa airport - what a marvellous end to the holiday!! Needless to say the good definitely did not out weight the bad on this trup so I would not travel with them again and I would discourage others from doing so either. Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
The Fantasia is really a lovely ship and the cleanest we've ever sailed on.However check your travel plans if you're going. Don't get on the ship at Genoa..all the italians do and its chaos. It took us nearly three hours to ... Read More
The Fantasia is really a lovely ship and the cleanest we've ever sailed on.However check your travel plans if you're going. Don't get on the ship at Genoa..all the italians do and its chaos. It took us nearly three hours to get on board.This was after a 2 hour trip from Milan airport. At disembarkation they want you off the ship as quickly as possible. They dropped us at Milan airport at 11am for a 21.35 flight to London ! They advertise a shore excursion which includes a tour of Genoa, for disembarking passengers, which finishes at Milan airport. This they cancelled. The staff on board are unsympathetic and just do not care, to the point of being rude.There is no information about the ports of call. With RCI you get a run down of the port you're visiting and a map.The food is definitely not 5 star. It was generally not very hot and the portions were small.On gala nights the buffet restaurant was closed which gave you no other dining option unless you paid for one of the speciality venues.The entertainment was generally poor. The Pirates show was the best with the Michael Jackson show extremely poor. The shows only last for 30 minutes anyway.The smoking laws are flouted in most of the bars and our neighbours smoked in their cabin and on the balcony which is forbidden. The staff simply ignore this. The staff generally are very disinterested and seem discouraged from conversation with the passengers.Tea and coffee are free only at Breakfast and at certain areas of the cafe at lunch, but definitely not at dinner.The itinerary was great and we chose this cruise as it visited Malta and Sicliy, where we hadn't been.It could be said that as MSC cruises are generally cheaper you get what you pay for. However we both expected a level of customer service which is very lacking. Msc need to seriously look at other cruise opeartors. I'm afraid their very Italian Experience, is way short of the norm for Italy. The food dispappointed me as we were looking forward to eating Italian, which is the best food in Europe. Read Less
Sail Date April 2011
My first impression of the ship was that it was beautiful and very clean. Our cabin was on the 13th level with a balcony. It was fine but looked nothing like the entrance areas of the ship. The rooms were cleaned and serviced twice ... Read More
My first impression of the ship was that it was beautiful and very clean. Our cabin was on the 13th level with a balcony. It was fine but looked nothing like the entrance areas of the ship. The rooms were cleaned and serviced twice daily.There was no problem with staff understanding English. We felt comfortable being one of the less than 20 Americans on the ship.The dining room food was ok. This is were the fine and good ends. There was an extra charge for even a glass of water plus the 15% gratuity. The only free water is in a few hidden corners of the buffet and in tiny little cups. All other drinks including water were at least several Euros each. Of course the alcohol was very pricey. No soft drinks or even water could be brought on board.We got NO information about the ports that we would visit. All questions were answered with take the excursions offered by MSC. They were very overpriced.When the MSC offered a shuttle to the towns they charged at least 6 Euros to go a mile or so. Some ports offered free shuttles to the port gates.We arrived 5 hours late in the Rome port due to weather and were not informed of the delay until it was time for the ship to arrive. The excursions were cut from full day to half day with no refund for the other half day.We were to visit the Rock of Gabriltar but this was canceled with no mention yet they still listed it as a stop on this and future cruises.The management showed no concern for the passangers. They only wanted the money. We gave our credit card for the service charges as well as other charges on board. This was a big mistake. They charged our card for contributions to a charity without our approval. The internet would not work and we had paid about 88 Euros for 6 hours of use. They would not listen to the fact that the internet would not work. We had all of the unused time left and were refused a refund. We were even charged 10 Euors for internet that we did not approve. We had to settle our account before we could leave the ship so therefore they had me. When I got home, I discovered and additional $137 charged to my card. I am in the process of disputing charges with my credit card company.I would not take another cruise with MSC under any conditions. If you choose to use this company, leave a cash deposit and not a credit card. Be ready to pay, pay, pay or be thirsty. Learn about all of the ports before you leave home. Do not depend on using the Internet to find out about the ports as you travel. Of course, do not expect answers of any of your questions no matter what language you speak. Read Less
Sail Date March 2011
NOT SO GOOD POINTS... Having already cruised 12 times before this cruise this was by far the worst.....Reception staff were very abrupt......Gangway staff I think were frightened to Smile and unhelpful.... not much information on the daily ... Read More
NOT SO GOOD POINTS... Having already cruised 12 times before this cruise this was by far the worst.....Reception staff were very abrupt......Gangway staff I think were frightened to Smile and unhelpful.... not much information on the daily news letter...Food was very average and not a lot of choice....but most of all the Drinks VERY...VERY expensive..(example..2 small Heineken with the 15% service charge was 8.97 euro.) This is the first ship we have cruised on where we had to pay for water lunch time and evening meal in the restaurant. The bottled water was 2.07euro for a 100CL size. Could not even get a cup of coffee or tea during the day without paying. Basically it was money grab all the time.. We only used the Buffet to eat once but that was like a free for all...walking around with your tray trying to find somewhere to sit... On the day of disembarkation we had to be out of the cabin by 8am, ok fair enough but we were taken to the airport and arrived at 12.15pm although our flight was not until nearly 7pm.... BETTER POINTS......Our waiters for lunch and evening meal were mostly very good...The drinks waiters in the various bars were very good and polite... The Ship was very very good..clean and immaculate.....Our Balcony cabin was excellent.. The evening shows were also very good and different... Read Less
Sail Date December 2010
We booked an 11 day cruise with the MSC Splendida due to the itinary and price. Having cruised several US based cruise lines before, I had an idea of how the experience can vary based on cruise line as well as ship to ship. We were ... Read More
We booked an 11 day cruise with the MSC Splendida due to the itinary and price. Having cruised several US based cruise lines before, I had an idea of how the experience can vary based on cruise line as well as ship to ship. We were immediately impressed by the Splendida. She is a beautiful ship. The decor was beautiful throughout, and our balcony room was fairly spacious with plenty of storage. The bathroom was pretty standard of that I have had on every ship I've been on. The service in the room was also pretty standard. We were way in the back of the boat. I mean, very back. This ship is supposed to be new...and when we backed up we nearly vibrated out of bed. We talked to people who were close to the front of the ship and they said even they felt it. You don't need a wake up call. When the ship backs into port it will wake you. I generally like being near the very front of back of the ship as there is less hallway noise (true on this ship as well). I have never felt a ship shake like this one does. Check-in...what a freakin' nightmare. Or could have been anyway. We arrived so early we weren't even sure we would be able to check in yet. The line was so long it was literally out the door. There were 2 lines. One for yacht club members and people who had pre registered and had express passes and another for everyone else. Thank god I had pre registered. We waited about 15 minutes, got our on board payment squared away and received our roomcards. Then we took a walk through the building where processing was done. We hit another line, very poorly organized, with overhead announcements we could barely hear. And couldn't understand. We waited about an hour through this line. They took our US passports and let us board the ship. The food is my biggest gripe of all. The buffet was TERRIBLE both at lunch and breakfast. Everything that should be hot was served cold (hence the title of my review). The selection was pretty limited, the lunch buffet closed way too early, too. Forget eating upon returning from an excursion. There was no dinner buffet at all. You either eat in the main dining room, or you pay to eat in another restaurant. There is no option. Early dining was at 6, and late dining at 8:30. We requested early dining and were put in late dining. Thank goodness they were able to change it once on board. We dined with another English speaking couple from England (it seemed they tried to seat people of the same language together). Food in the main dining room was OK. Never any steak or lobster, as we usually see at least once on an american cruise line. Our dinner tablemates said this was the best food they had ever had on an MSC cruise...and they have been on many. If this was the best I can not imagine how horrible the other ships' food is. The service was fair; our waiter's english wasn't great. There was no bar service in the main dining rooms. You can get wine or 2 kinds of beer. No cocktails at all. Never saw a head waiter for matre d'. The food was a serious low point on the ship. The shore excursions were pretty good. They would seperate people based on the language they speak...though sometimes 2 languages would end up on the same bus. It really wasn't a big deal. The way they had people meet was actually much better than I've seen on any other cruise line. They have people meet in different lounges based on the excursion they are taking, give you a bus number based on the language you speak, then call people down to the buses by their number. Our favorite was the excursion in Rhodes, Greece. We toured an ancient castle with a great guide. Alexandria, Egypt was a HUGE let down. The guide was poor. Activities? Forget it. We were so bored on the ship. About the only thing we could find to do was to go to the sports bar and hope they had some american sports on TV. MSC definately catered to an older crowd on this ship. If you wanna karoke and play scrabble, you are in luck. With the weather being pretty cool in mid-november, we spent a lot of time in our room napping. Entertainment. We never went to a show. We admit that we are spoiled. We live in Las Vegas and cruise ship shows are just awful in comparison. We don't even bother anymore. There ws a good jazz band on board. Usually after dinner we'd go have a drink in the jazz bar. We did not travel with kids, so we can not comment on children's activities. We didn't see very many kids on the ship. Disembarkation was fairly smooth. We were given colored baggage tags and were asked in disembark in order based on the color of our tags. Our flight wasn't til the next day, so we were in no hurry. Other things to note is just the culture difference. People had a real problem waiting in the "que" (line) wherever you were in this ship. Whether in the buffet line, waiting to get on or off the ship or to buy a picture...you can be sure someone will be trying to cut in front of you in the line. And after a few days it gets really old. Also, MSC really tries to make sure everyone knows what is going on while on the ship. It wasn't uncommon for them to make announcements in about 8 different languages. There were 3 english stations on the TV and all were news. Overall, after crusing MSC's Splendida I can tell you, without a doubt, that I will never, ever cruise any of MSC's ships again. With terrible food and at best fair service I was not impressed. Read Less
Sail Date November 2010
Firstly, we are not new to cruise holidays, in fact I would say our preferred choice of holiday for a lot of years has been a cruise. If this had been my first cruise,I would never take another one!! With the exception of the staff who ... Read More
Firstly, we are not new to cruise holidays, in fact I would say our preferred choice of holiday for a lot of years has been a cruise. If this had been my first cruise,I would never take another one!! With the exception of the staff who serviced our cabin, I found the staff very uninterested,and lazy. We were a minority,and felt very "out" of things in lots of ways. I found the ship very expensive, and the excursions I can only describe as "RIP OFFS" In one port,they wanted 20 euros each, to take us into town.We used the local taxi boat service ,for 4 euros each. I have never been in a dining room before, where a fist fight broke out at the table next to us! But this was the women who were fighting, while there husbands sat and laughed at the spectacle!! Another passenger physically assaulted one of the tour guides, because she would not let him board the coach smoking a cigar! Him and his wife were carted away by the local police! In short, a disaster of a holiday,my first with an Italian line,and my last!! My wife and I both agree, that if we were offered another holiday with MSC, free of charge , we would refuse it!!! I could go on ,about the quality of the food etc.,but I would rather not remember it all!!! If you are an English speaker,and thinking of booking with MSC,think again!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
Hello all: My girlfriend and I did our 1st ever cruise on the MSC Orchestra from Sept 8-15. Boarded from Genoa and service was bad nealy everywhere, we are from Quebec/Canda I do speak English well but my girl friend speaks only French. ... Read More
Hello all: My girlfriend and I did our 1st ever cruise on the MSC Orchestra from Sept 8-15. Boarded from Genoa and service was bad nealy everywhere, we are from Quebec/Canda I do speak English well but my girl friend speaks only French. We had booked transportation with MSC from airport to port dock, We arrived in Genoa at Noon after a 12 hours flight/plane switching. A girl from MSC welcomed us and had us go to a private waiting room on the 2nd floor of the airport saying we would have to wait about an hour for a flight from Britain to arrive. After 1:15 I ask her if the UK flight had been delayed, she sais no, they are arriving soon and lead us outside to a bus, the driver took our bagages and we were seated in the bus. The girls and the driver went back in the airport and we waited over 1 hour in a overheated bus (motor and A/C were off only door was open!! Finally at 2:30 the Brit passenger came in the bus and we were taken to the dock. We thought our waiting was over but the check-in line-up was so long probably 1000-1500 people (Most Italians, noisy and some try to jump into the line) we finally boarded the ship at 5 PM and sailed at 6PM. So our first impression was bad. The ship was gorgeous and the cabin clean, we had chosen Stateroom with balcony, the balcony was ok but the room was rather small (Had look on the internet and on the picture the rooms were larger? We went for our first dinner, we were assigned a table of 4, and a young couple from Toronto were our dinner partner and they were very nice and friendly, the waiter was also courteous and was always smiling but he spoke only a few words of English (Most of the waiters came from Indonesia?), the food was fairly good with 7 servings, but not much in each plate, the meat was always overcooked, same with the fish. I had received at checkout a booklet of 7 coupons for bottles of water, so a liter of mineral water was free for dinner, our dining partner did not have those coupons so they were charged 2,14 Euros every dinner for a bottle of water which angered them. We had to pay water at lunch you cannot get tea/coffee at the restaurant for lunch or dinner, you have to take it at a bar/lounger and pay 4 Euros for 2 cups, we like to have a hot drink with our dessert, is that a European custom? Most of the staff did not speak much English and even less French, the language on board is Italian and smiles on most onboard personnel is inexistant. We felt we did not belong there. For luch you could go to one of the 2 restaurants, and some shoed you to available place. One day the head waiter seats us at a table of 8 with already 6 Italians seated, I don`t understand the language but a lady was arguying with the head waiter and he politely ask us to move to another table, we were rejected...And we were not the only Canadians to which this hapenned. After a few days sailing except for meals, we stayed on our balcony or cabin, we did not go see any shows entertainment (all was Italian) No American Brodway musicals or French CanCan type shows. The places we visited were nice but on the first stop in Malaga we had chosen to visit the cavern of Nerja (wow!) when I booked at the front desk the day befre was told only Italian or English tours so chose the English. It turned out that excursion was composed of about 75% Italian and it became more a Italian guided tour, the guide spoke 80% of the time in Italian, to pay 44 Euro per person and hear Italian most of the time, I nearly got an Italian lesson ! I could go on and on and my girl friend and I who were thinking of taking a Carribean or Alaska cruise next year are now asking ourselves if cruises are the kind of travel for us. I would not recommend Mediterranan Cruises with MSC at all Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
We booked our cruise directly with MSC (UK). Our flights were from Manchester to CDG Paris and connecting from CDG Paris to Genoa where we would be met and transported by coach to Port. When our flight details arrived we saw that there was ... Read More
We booked our cruise directly with MSC (UK). Our flights were from Manchester to CDG Paris and connecting from CDG Paris to Genoa where we would be met and transported by coach to Port. When our flight details arrived we saw that there was barely an hour between arriving and connecting flight to Genoa. We phoned MSC and said we were concerned as CDG is a large terminal and we didn`t think there was sufficient time to get to the departure gate. I was assured by the Customer Service officer that "No one has ever missed a flight before!". However, our misgivings were confirmed when we were on the plane to Paris the stewardess came to us and advised us that we were too late as our connecting flight was about to take off. I now know that this HAS HAPPENED numerous times before....although I was assured by MSC that there had never been any problems. The outcome was that we were stuck in Paris till late afternoon (we had left home at 2.30 a.m. with our two young children). When we arrived in Genoa we had to get a taxi, at our own expense to the Port and arrived just as the ship was about to depart. Fortunately we were let on and we went to Reception to get our cabin Key...we were asked to register our credit card which we did. Our package holiday was for an "All Inclusive" cruise. At dinner that evening we had two glasses of wine and two soft drinks for the children. The waiter came and asked us to sign the bill...we explained that we were on an "All Inclusive" basis but he said that was not the case...rather than embarrass him we decided it was easier to sign and sort it out later. However, after visiting Reception a rather glum Receptionist said "NO you are not All Inclusive". We said there must be a mistake but she was not even interested and turned her back on us! We then went to our cabin to get our invoice and returned to the desk with the confirmation invoice. The same Receptionist shrugged her shoulders, heaved an exasperated sigh and spoke to us VERY SLOWLY and said "I have told you NO". At this point her colleague came along, took the invoice and tapped some information into the system..then she, by some mysterious means, managed to find our information. She said something to her colleague who "snatched" our cards from our hands and put stickers on them confirming we were indeed "All inclusive". As we were about to walk away she said something to her colleague and pulled a face in our direction...we felt dreadful. A Spanish couple standing next to us said they were disgusted at the way we had been treated. We decided to forget all that and concentrate on having a good time, which we did...although the food was only passable...the service from the restaurant and bar staff was wonderful. The cabins were lovely and the ship was beautiful but too big and did not have a great atmosphere. On the last morning we had received our invoice for our on-board spend, which included trips and films for the children etc. We had registered our credit card but on the last morning we still had plenty of cash left over from our spending money. I asked the English speaking Rep, Lee-Anne, if we would be able to pay our bill in cash rather than put it on our Credit Card. She said that was no problem and was at the Accounts Desk when we arrived where she was directing people into the various queues, one for cash payment and the other for Credit Card authorisation. When I presented the invoice I explained to the young man on the desk that I would be paying CASH and gave him 500 Euros...he counted it out and gave me the correct change. Then he asked me to sign the invoice...which I did. I did see my Credit Card number on it but as the balance at the bottom said NIL I was not unduly concerned. We were taken by coach to Genoa Airport and had to wait till late afternoon for our flight to Paris CDG (Although there were numerous flights leaving early in the day..MSC had chosen to put us on a late flight...not good waiting around all day in a small airport with two children). When our Credit Card statement arrived two weeks ago we were shocked and worried to find that we had been charged again on our credit card, although we paid CASH. Since then, despite numerous calls to MSC Customer Service Department, we have not been able to get this matter sorted. We have asked our Credit Card company to stop payment, which they have done. However, now MSC are saying we "have no proof" that we have paid. This is ridiculous, surely the amount we paid was entered into the computer at the time. there must also be CCTV cameras in the area, and the Rep, Lee-Anne witnessed our transaction. It is a nightmare! So, my advice to any would-be customer of MSC is to BEWARE. They have been dishonest in their dealings with us. The Customer Service is appalling, the administration staff are useless and BEWARE if you are booking flights with them from a Regional airport as you could be left high and dry somewhere and they wouldn`t care.....Once they have your money they don`t care about you. ALTHOUGH THE SHIPS ARE BEAUTIFUL AND SOME OF THE STAFF ARE LOVELY...I WOULD NEVER EVER RECOMMEND THIS COMPANY...SO THOSE WHO ARE PLANNING A CRUISE TAKE A WORD OF WARNING...THEY ARE NOT TO BE TRUSTED WITH YOUR MONEY! Read Less
Sail Date August 2010
MSC Lirica 29th March 2010- 5th April 2010 We recently went on the MSC cruise above and were extremely disappointed and let down by MSC and the Lirica staff. Listed below were some of the problems:- • Embarkation was totally ... Read More
MSC Lirica 29th March 2010- 5th April 2010 We recently went on the MSC cruise above and were extremely disappointed and let down by MSC and the Lirica staff. Listed below were some of the problems:- • Embarkation was totally disorganised with only one scanner out of three working • During the cruise children were allowed to run around the ship unsupervised without the ship crew intervening. • Outside our room, 10066 we had children continually running up and down the corridor. • When in our cabin there was continual noise from the pool area above and the sound on the ceiling of children running backwards and forwards • We were unable to use the Jacuzzi at any time as it was always full of children and teenagers • At lunchtime, in both restaurants, it was like a rugby scrum. There were too many adults and children and not enough tables, and after waiting in line we had to eat our meal on a table with uncleared meals • When the ship departed from Genoa it was supposed to stop at Portofino, but this was cancelled • General communication on the boat was very poor • At a number of ports at which we called, passengers were embarking and disembarking and at these times we could not use some of the lounge areas. • There was very poor customer service and a general feeling that staff were not interested • A number of English shore tours were cancelled due to insufficient English speakers • On leaving the ship the coach to the airport had enough seats but not enough room for every ones case, so the two of us were left alone waiting at the port for the coach to return. We were informed after 25 minutes that the motorway was blocked and the coach might not get back to the dock. We needed to get to the airport to catch our plane. An MSC representative gave us the choice of waiting in the hope the coach would turn up or get a taxi. We were told by the representative that we would have to pay and try and claim the 25 Euros back from MSC. This was terrible customer service. The final straw was that we had a stomach bug on the last day of the cruise causing sickness and diarrhoea. When we left the ship we were not well but the ship's doctor was very helpful and gave medication. In summary, the holiday was a continuing series of bad service where children were allowed to run wild. Read Less
Sail Date March 2010
Charlie Mitchell said: Our cruise from Genoa to Durban, South Africa began with a 6 hour wait on the dock after a 3 hour coach trip from Turin (a last minute change to our original booking)for the ship to arrive, and be serviced. The ... Read More
Charlie Mitchell said: Our cruise from Genoa to Durban, South Africa began with a 6 hour wait on the dock after a 3 hour coach trip from Turin (a last minute change to our original booking)for the ship to arrive, and be serviced. The embarkation process was absolutely shambolic with no information given by any MSC staff member. The fast track process the Company offered online to get you aboard more quickly was a total waste of time. Whether you did it or not made no difference. You just joined the queue like everybody else. The ship itself was fine, the waiters were on the whole very good, as were the bar staff. They seemed pleased to see anybody who could afford to buy a drink in any of the bars! My friends and I have been on many cruises in the past and this ship has got to be the most expensive ever, not only in the bars, but everywhere else on board and we organised our own shore excursions at a quarter of the cost of the same being offered by the ship. Come 11pm the ship was like the Marie Celeste, nearly everybody was in bed either through lack of adult entertainment or depression through not being able to afford a drink. The same applied to the Casino where you would expect a little action. The only people in there on most nights were the lonely croupiers and the odd couples playing the slot machines. They looked as bored as we were. This was probably due to the high minimum stakes at the tables. In the MSC brochure it states that for cruises in the Caribbean, North America and South Africa the currency onboard is the US dollar. We were being charged in Euros. One passenger checked his onboard account via a ships computer and found his bill was in dollars. Following his complaint to the head of accounts, these computers were unavailable for some 5 days through "technical problems". When they were activated it was not possible to use them to check accounts. Some 200 passengers were so angry about this that a petition was signed and 2 South Africans represented the group at meetings with the ships management. MSC argued that the cruise was originally due to sail along the East coast to South Africa, where the currency would have been dollars, but because of the possible dangers from Somali pirates it was re-routed along the West coast, where all prices were Euros. As a gesture of good will they promised a 5% discount off our bills, later amended to our bar bills, later amended not to include the very, very rare 2 for one drinks. This offer was derisory. Who said pirates were only in Somalia ! Entertainment in the theatre was good, but elsewhere it was spoilt by the childish loud antics of the ships animation team, who should all have walked the plank and given us all some peace. These people would be better suited to children's parties than their pathetic attempts of trying to entertain adults. Another rip off was the shuttle bus from the dock into Cape Town at 8 Euros each. We were advised to take this as it was "quite a distance" before you got out of the dock to any local transport, so 4 of us paid the 32 euros. The bus was full and we were told the next one was a 45 minute wait. A local dock worker said we could walk it in 10 minutes, which we did. Not having used our tickets we asked for a refund when we returned. The unhelpful and aggressive accounts office onboard refused and said we would have to write to head office in Naples. We later found out that a taxi for 4 would have cost £5. All in all a very disappointing and expensive time. The initials MSC would be better read as Money Syphoning Company. Would I travel with them again? About as much chance of me being elected the next Pope. Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
We have been on 7 cruises, and I knew going into this that MSC was a risk. It is a European line and there was a possibility that the European experience would not be for us. But I'd like to say to start that there were very few ... Read More
We have been on 7 cruises, and I knew going into this that MSC was a risk. It is a European line and there was a possibility that the European experience would not be for us. But I'd like to say to start that there were very few things that we considered "unacceptable" that had anything to do with cultural differences. I'll start with the good news: The Poesia is beautiful. It is easy to find your way around, with ample public spaces and deck space. Our itinerary was a dream! We started in Milan for 2 days pre-cruise, then went by bus to Genoa. After Rome, it was off to Haifa and Ashdod, Israel. (NOt in the drop-down list of ports below.) We were travelling with a larger group of almost 300 people, so arrangements here were made by them. We saw all of the major sites in the Holy Land and had some wonderful experiences as a a family. It was amazing to be in the Holy Land the week before Easter and to be able to reflect on the life of the Savior. As far as MSC, I have some major gripes. The first thing is they changed the stateroom my in-laws and 2 kids were supposed to have, so when we arrived and were taken to our room, it was a room for 3 people instead of 4. They acted confused when we said this would not work. The room steward says, "You see, this is no problem. Children are okay." In discussing it further, we figured out they really, truly were not concerned about not having 4 beds because the children didn't each need a bed. I don't know where they expected them to sleep! We managed to get their room changed, but they actually moved them TWICE over the next 2 days, so they never did get to unpack and unwind. The food is every bit as horrible as I've heard. I'm not a "foodie," and I'm not even really that picky. I was concerned at the lack of alternative choices, but had no idea how horrible that would make it. It's one thing to not have a buffet available for dinner- but it's another thing entirely when your dinner in the dining room is so awful you can't eat it and you have no way to get any other food to fill you up! Our waiter often times didn't bring all the courses to all of us, sometimes brought the wrong food entirely, and routinely served us cold food. Even warm the food was just awful. The breakfast and lunch buffets weren't bad, except I never once had warm eggs at breakfast. At breakfast, free juice is available in 2 oz cups- IF you can find the waiter that brings juice. When you're done with that juice, he'll pick up your cup and put it back on the tray with the replenished juice cups and give you another one. Water is not available unless you buy it bottled, except at breakfast in 2 oz cups. So the following items are not the fault of MSC, but could've been handled better by them. Before I even post it just know 1 thing. I am not culturally insensitive. I realize people do things differently, but I have never been so irritated in my entire life as I was several times on this cruise. I point these things out not to start a discussion about "who's right" or which culture is what, but I think you should know these things if you plan an MSC cruise, because they do affect the ability to enjoy your cruise. There were only 300 Americans on board out of the 2600 total. There were 1700 Italians. I was very put off by their rude behavior, and I may not even be able to explain it sufficiently. And I do know that the people I had a problem with were Italian, because they were all part of a group and wore particular neckbands. We didn't experience these problems while in port, so I can only assume these rude people are not indicative of Italians in general, but I don't' know! Okay- first, the minor things. When they get on an elevator, they stand right in front of the doors. So if you try to get in on another floor and there are 2 people on the elevator, they will not let you on unless you push past them. You can't say "pardon" or "scuzi" or anything- they simply will not move. And if you need to get off an elevator but you are in the back, they will not let you off the elevator. They will not step aside for anything! This is a minor thing of course, and I realize it's just a cultural difference, but one person in our group is in a wheelchair, and this made life very difficult. We all know how hard the elevators can be on any cruise ship, and this made it much, much worse. In the buffet, they will not wait in line- they grab a plate and then cut in wherever they want to- and they don't say anything. They just push in. One lady actually cut in front of me and took the tongs out of my hand to get herself some fries as I was waiting in line with 100 people at lunch! This "not waiting in line" issue really becomes a problem when you try to disembark, and here is where MSC could've made a difference. There are no lines, and everyone just crams in by the exit. When they finally open it, everyone forces their way towards the front- pushing and elbowing as they go. People were literally crushed against the wall! My 8 yr old was almost trampled one time by the thoughtless people as they tried to get off the ship. The crew does nothing in this case. They just stand there. When boarding an MSC shuttle in Dubrovnik, again, no lines- just 300 people rushing for a bus- and they don't care if you have kids, anyone elderly or disabled or anything. I actually saw 2 older men both in the stairway of the bus at the same time pushing against each other- neither of them willing to let the other one get in first. So yes, this is a cultural difference. I had been warned "they do not wait in lines" and I didn't see too big of a problem taking extra time to get somewhere because people cut in or whatever. But I had no idea not only do they not wait in line, but they push and shove and trample anything that gets in their way. This makes for a very dangerous situation, and I believe MSC should've done something to ensure our safety. Overall, we had a wonderful trip, but MSC is completely off our list no matter how wonderful the itinerary would be. I would be happy to answer any more specific questions you might have. Ciao! Read Less
Sail Date March 2009
We are not novices to cruising as this was our 39th cruise. We are gold card members of the MSC line. Until this sailing, MSC has been our favorite cruise line. Unfortunately the service made us feel like unwanted relatives on the ... Read More
We are not novices to cruising as this was our 39th cruise. We are gold card members of the MSC line. Until this sailing, MSC has been our favorite cruise line. Unfortunately the service made us feel like unwanted relatives on the Orchestra. We have had better and worse embarkations thus nothing worth writing about. It was upon entering the ship our problems began. Our adult son came with us since this was a Christmas and New year's vacation. Upon boarding he went to the Receptionist Desk to give them cash so he could open up his onboard account. When he tried to tell the receptionist what he wanted to do she told him "if he would shut up and listen." I was standing by him or I might not have believed a customer relations person would talk that way to a passenger. We are loyal past passengers and get treated this way. Strike one within ten minutes of boarding. Other cruise lines show you to your cabin and some even offer a glass of champagne. None of that here. You are on your own to find your cabin. Being hungry we went up to deck 13 for something to eat. Another disappointment. The food was tasteless and all the salads looked and tasted the same. There were only two variety of cakes for dessert. Little did we know this was to be the case for the entire cruise. Our first dinner foretold what was ahead for the next 17 days. We never saw a steak the entire trip. Fish served every meal but over cooked and quite dry. Chicken every meal and again over cooked. We ordered pasta the first night (remembering how wonderful the pasta was on the Opera.) To our surprise it was tasteless except for a rancid, metallic taste. No one at our table could eat it. In 17 days we had truly good pasta only two times. Service in the dining room was bad to pitiful. We were at a table for 6 and one person would get their dish while the rest would wait 10 to 15 minutes. Sometimes we were served the wrong orders. Other times we never got what we ordered. Sometimes we would get our food but have no silverware to eat it with. Dinner always took around two hours. Everyday except for three we went to the "formal" dining room for lunch. Imagine our surprise to have to go through a cafeteria line (buffet) at lunch in the formal dining room. No menu service. Again the food was tasteless. In all our cruises this was a first. Christmas Eve we could have "prime rib" or lobster. Everyone at our table and next to us agreed the "prime rib" was merely a small piece of over cooked roast beef. The lobster was soooo large we took three bites and it was gone. Also, I was told fourteen passengers ended up in the infirmary ill after eating the lobster. Unfortunately the food never improved the entire cruise. I had occasion to speak with Marcello, the Guest Relations manager. He told me he was a "chef" and that Italians do not cook with spices. I wondered if he thought I had dropped here from another planet. Especially since my husband is 1/2 Italian. Day two we slept in and did not leave our cabin until 10:10 am. Imagine our surprise to find it was not possible to find anything to eat on the ship until noon. The restaurant closed at 9:30 am everyday of the trip. The deck 13 cafeteria (buffet) closed at 10:00 am. No rolls, croissants, nothing. Our cabin was always very clean and our room steward had a handicap as our adult son would stay out quite late and thus get up very late. Our steward never complained and graciously worked around our night owl. We were quite happy with our service in this area. The productions shows were good and the costumes were beautiful. The were four African men who were acrobats. They were truly wonderful. The magician and illusionist were acceptable. One night there was no show at all and three nights the show consisted entirely of groups which played every night in the atrium lounge. These three nights were poorly attended since we saw them every night anyway when passing by the atrium. The Entertainment (Animation) Team on MSC really work hard and extremely long hours. These young people were no exception. They danced with passengers every single evening until 1 or 2 am. They had Italian lessons, trivia games, crazy games, dance lessons, etc. From nine in the morning until two am they were very visible and working hard. They truly made this voyage bearable. The cruise director on the other hand was very aloof and seldom said anything to the passengers. The ships lounge performers were generally good. We especially liked the Popcorn Band and their singer, Romanica. She has a truly lovely voice and is very friendly and outgoing. On the Opera you could not get on the ship or go into an eating facility without a crew member squirting you with hand sanitizer. Imagine our surprise when we cannot even find the sanitizer on deck 13 four four days. It was behind a door. Quite often when getting back on the ship or entering the dining room the hand sanitizer was empty. There was never any crew in sight the entire trip checking on this. Something we have never seen before was that none of the ships shops were open until the fourth day of our cruise. Christmas decorations (such as they were) did not appear until day four and five of our cruise. We heard several passengers complain because the ship never put up a Menorah even though we were cruising during Hanukah. There were never any Christmas Carols, no egg nog, no special Christmas show Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. A passenger chorus sang prior to midnight mass which was held at 11:00. Other than Santa for the children Christmas Day might as well have been any other day of the year. Get this the Orchestra had a Friends of Bill W. meeting in the Savannah "Bar." Our past passenger party was not until December 28 which is when we got our "welcome cocktail." It took three phone calls to get the invitation which we finally received 10 minutes prior to the party. Only ONE cocktail is permitted per passenger. No canapes. Since Saint Thomas is the first U.S. port this is where the immigration procedures were done. What a mess. We got a paper which I am quoting "instructions for passengers NON USA and Canada." We get a knock on our door and were chastised for not going through customs. I showed the person our form and he said we did not know how to read and must go right away. We stood in line for one hour to have a ship officer glance at our passport and put a sticker on it so we could get off the ship and go into town. The last week of the cruise many of the passengers and some of the crew got a hacking cough, sore throat and fever. My son and spouse both had to go to the infirmary for medicine. They were told there was not an outbreak of illness. However, the ship sounded like a T.B. ward. A couple of passengers said they had contacted the Center for Disease Control because of the ships denial and the lack of sanitization. We have cruised so many times, we know there are always a few disgruntled passengers but we have never talked to so many people who were so angry. People from nearly every country we spoke with expressed their displeasure with the Orchestra. We only met three people who seemed happy with the cruise. We found out they were on their first cruise. Disembarkation was truly a nightmare. Everyone had to be out of their cabin by 7:00 am. Breakfast was closed at 8:30 am. Nobody was allowed off the ship until after 10:30 am. There was an announcement about 9:00 am blaming the Immigration Department for the hold up. Since we had a 12:30 train home we were getting quite nervous. I went to the Receptionist and she said she could not give me a different colored tag. (Ours was over half way down the list to be called.) She then said they could not "force" anyone to stay on the ship. We spoke with some people sitting near us and they had 7:00 to 8:00 evening flights and had the first colored tags to be called. We slipped in line when the first tags were called and upon reaching the baggage area off the ship found our luggage had not even been taken off the ship yet. We spoke to someone in Immigration and were told they were ready by 9:00 am to clear the Orchestra's passengers but the ship is under staffed and that was why it was taking so long. Many a time I have gone on Cruise Critic to defend MSC, telling the detractors how wonderful MSC is. I now feel a need to apologize to my fellow Cruise Critic's for misleading them. What has happened to my beloved MSC??? Read Less
Sail Date December 2008
The MSC Cruise line is for the birds. If you plan a cruise DO NOT CHOOSE MSC CRUISE LINES. It is a very boring place to be. The food was terrible-horrible-everything was either undercooked or overcooked....they even screwed up corn ... Read More
The MSC Cruise line is for the birds. If you plan a cruise DO NOT CHOOSE MSC CRUISE LINES. It is a very boring place to be. The food was terrible-horrible-everything was either undercooked or overcooked....they even screwed up corn flakes (I lived on French fries and tomatoes for 17 days)...... there were no trained crew members everybody was new and spoke very little English if any at all....there were 16 decks on this ship and 2...yes 2...Christmas trees..no decorations.........no Christmas music......they had no planned organized fun things to do except stretching exercises and bingo and that was ill organized........Bingo cards cost $10 for one card......I paid extra for a smoking balcony and they did not allow smoking on balconies.......they charge 3% for cashing travelers checks.......the only deck party they had was New Year's Eve....no ice carvings and grand buffet on the last night as ships usually do...the nightly shows (except 2) were all operatic and classical.....no religious Christmas services except for Catholics.....the first and second days they had no night time buffet so you had to eat in the dining room whether you wanted to or not, then they had so many complaints that they had to open a buffet at night.....you had to pay for pizza...you had to pay for ice cream...one man had to pay $3.50 for a glass of crushed ice.....there were two big fights on the ship....no movie theater or free movies....the first few days they had 10 free movies but so many people were so bored they were staying in the cabins watching them so they took them off.....one couple got off in Casablanca and flew themselves home and another two couples got off in San Juan....... We had to beg for bananas...beg for doughnuts...they kept these things under the counter...... they did not ever have any milk although people were asking for it....until about 5 days into the cruise after thousands of complaints we didn't even get coffee except at mealtimes and on every cruise I have been on there are coffee and juices 24 hours a day.... One more thing...there were no hand sanitizers until we got to American territory and inspection time. They were hidden under the counters too. A lot of people caught colds and were in bed for a period of time....Clarence was one of them for 4 days. There were about 3K + travelers on this cruise and 2900 of them swear they will never go on another MSC Cruise Line. Everybody was complaining from all countries. If you sat down at a table or somewhere with a complete stranger, all that was talked about was how bad the ships crew, the service, and the organization was....especially the food. Everybody was teed off because the only vegetables were cauliflower, broccoli, and shredded carrots. We finally got some potatoes. They were also upset because all the deserts were the same with just different colored icing. The food was horrible in all restaurants because we tried them all trying to find something fit to eat. This is the only cruise line we have ever been on that we LOST weight. The productions shows were good and the costumes were beautiful. The were four African men who were acrobats. They were truly wonderful. The magician and illusionist were acceptable. One night there was no show at all and three nights the show consisted entirely of groups which played every night in the atrium lounge. These three nights were poorly attended since we saw them every night anyway when passing by the atrium. The Entertainment (Animation) Team on MSC really work hard and extremely long hours. These young people were no exception. They danced with passengers every single evening until 1 or 2 am. They had Italian lessons, trivia games, crazy games, dance lessons, etc. From nine in the morning until two am they were very visible and working hard. They truly made this voyage bearable. The cruise director on the other hand was very aloof and seldom said anything to the passengers. The ships lounge performers were generally good. We especially liked the Popcorn Band and their singer, Romanica. She has a truly lovely voice and is very friendly and outgoing. On our other cruises you could not get on the ship or go into an eating facility without a crew member squirting you with hand sanitizer. Imagine our surprise when we cannot even find the sanitizer on deck 13 four four days. It was behind a door. Quite often when getting back on the ship or entering the dining room the hand sanitizer was empty. There was never any crew in sight the entire trip checking on this. At one point I asked a crew member for the hand sanitizer, he sent me to the toilet. It took about three hours to get onto the ship and nearly six hours to get off. They ran us out of our rooms at 7AM (which was a first for us) and gathered all 3K+ into two small bars and then the Captain did not have some type of paperwork that America requires and we waited nearly six hours to get off. That is with no water, food or anything else and no place for all of us to sit. We were sitting on the stairs, laying in the floor, sitting on the bar and nearly hanging from the rafters. Children were irritable, crying...it was a fiasco. and I could go on and on but I bet you are tired of reading by now. However, the itinerary was great and off the ship we saw a lot of good stuff. We made several good friends and they helped to make the trip from becoming a complete disaster. So if you want to punish your friends and get even with your enemies..send them on an MSC CRUISE LINE FOR A FEW DAYS. Not us though, we will never cruise MSC again. The nicest people on the ship were both working on Deck 13. There names are Arie from Bali and Miriam from Peru. This was our first MSC Cruise and although we cruise at least twice yearly and sometimes more. This will be our last MSC Cruise. Read Less
Sail Date December 2008
This was our 16th cruise, 3rd this year. we have been on ships for 40 days in 2008 We liked: our balcony room The classical concerts Night at the opera concert (and we're not opera fans) The energy of the entertainment team ... Read More
This was our 16th cruise, 3rd this year. we have been on ships for 40 days in 2008 We liked: our balcony room The classical concerts Night at the opera concert (and we're not opera fans) The energy of the entertainment team The mime game Ice cream and sorbet for dessert The Nativity the activity team made carnival game night with prizes the string/piano quartet The african acrobatic boys- wow My daughter and cousin love teen clubs. Beware, this it a "teen meeting place" it is in a fully functional bar where kids were allowed to drink and smoke. My daughter made some friends but they were the younger kids. One game they played was a scavenger hunt, they had to get in groups and find things in their cabins. One item was a girls pair of panties (which we saw a boy wearing over his clothes) and they had to gather all the bras they could and hook them together. The Americans refused to play, we made a formal complaint. Most days the club teens 13-17 age kids met at 11 pm and my kids stayed till midnight. Nothing happened on some sea days. Some times the counselor wouldn't show up. they advertised a foosball game and I went to get the counselor to tell her my kids were there for the competition. My daughter met some great kids from England and Australia they hung out with and played games (we brought) with them. The younger kids club was extremely small and unlike the 16 other cruises we went on, not good, it was a play like McDonalds area where parents came and watched their kids play. You will be with your kids all the time. The big screen TV at the pool showed NOTHING but advertisements for the ship. NOTHING. They said it wasn't working. Hummm. On our Disney cruise they played constant movies. We started our first free movie, it was mis advertised as a G and was an R! We only got 1.5 movies watched before they pulled the free movies. The rest of the movies were a pay for view at $10.90 EACH, with redbox we won't do that! I filled a wide mouth water bottle and carried it to dinner with me, no refills even when we asked. We brought a computer with extra speakers and our own movies. Bring games to play and books to read. The ship was a smokers paradise, every lounge and bar has one small area for non smokers. We were in the lounge on disembarkation for 3 hours in a smokers lounge. Forced to be there! I complained but to no avail. My daughter said finally; please don't write our cabin number on the comment sheets. Americans will not put up with bad food and smoking! We took a game to the dinner table with us and rolled dice for 2-3 hours waiting for our meal. I had to put my reading glasses on one night to find my meat in my rolled pork. the gym was 1/3 the size of a normal gym. THe so called jogging track had deck chairs on it from 7AM on and it was a danger to walk. It was not marked as a jogging track so people were annoyed when we were walking round and around. Deck 7 doesn't go all the way around but that is a better track to walk on We had a great time because that is what we do, some people let it ruin their trip. We will never go on an MSC cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2008
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