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14,746 Royal Caribbean Family Cruise Reviews

Traveling with my 3 brothers/2 spouses for our annual family trip. Flew in the day before. We had rented a suburban for the 6 of us through Budget. This was a disaster. The Budget line was 50 people deep and when we finally got up ... Read More
Traveling with my 3 brothers/2 spouses for our annual family trip. Flew in the day before. We had rented a suburban for the 6 of us through Budget. This was a disaster. The Budget line was 50 people deep and when we finally got up there, my brother forgot his license. Instead of just letting us add a driver they made us get out of line and call budget to do this and they said they didn't have a suburban for us to rent. We ended up getting a minivan through National but this took us 2 hours to solve and budget was NO HELP. We stayed at a 3 bedroom townhouse at Cape Crossing Marina. Very nice place about 5 miles the port. It was clean and ended up being cheaper than getting 3 hotel rooms. Very much recommend. The cruise itself was a reschedule from September 1st cruise that was canceled due to Dorian. Not sure if I'll ever cruise in February again. Maybe it was just one of those weeks, but it was windy and chilly on most of the days and definitely not warm enough to get into the water. Due to the weather, the aqua shows were canceled several times. I understand that safety comes first, but maybe they can have a plan B show to do. Yes I want to see the high dive, but I would have been satisfied with a scaled down show that they could have done. Another issue I had was that there was a private group on board that took over many of the venues. This caused a complete cancelation of I SKATE ice show. Which by all accounts was a better show than 1887 show I was looking forward to seeing. REALLY DISAPPOINTED! One other minor complaint was that our room steward never introduced himself, never asked if we needed anything. I found that odd since every other cruise I've been on that was never an issue. I also never really saw the cruise director much other than coming out after shows. I actually saw the captain more than the cruise director. FOOD. it was definitely hit or miss but it was edible. Our dining wait staff was awesome. Cabin. Oceanview balcony, very nice location deck 8 close to elevators Ports. St. Maarten, we went to orient beach and then on to Maho beach. It was very windy and sprinkled a bit. This is the best shopping port. San Juan. We did a private tour of san Juan and it was nice. Coco Cay. I really like RC's private island. It has all you need just steps from the ship. The weather was ok. VERY WINDY and the water was cold, but enjoyed the views and soaked up too much sun. Shopping was not good. Everything overpriced. $10 for a magnet. Braiding lady wanted $40 when I asked for a French braid. The food that was offered on the island was outstanding! Overall it was a good trip. Loved spending time with my family which is #1 priority. Also to note the embarkation/disembarkation was Awesome. Walked right on and walked right off. Port Canaveral was very easy. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
I previously took a 6-day Royal Caribbean cruise on Freedom of the Seas and loved it. Tremendous service! Housekeeping was attentive, and gave us lots of advice on getting around the ship and ports. They removed the barrier between two ... Read More
I previously took a 6-day Royal Caribbean cruise on Freedom of the Seas and loved it. Tremendous service! Housekeeping was attentive, and gave us lots of advice on getting around the ship and ports. They removed the barrier between two ocean balcony rooms, so friends could share that space. My Time Dining was flexible, we didn't need to book dinner or entertainment in advance of the trip. On Harmony, we had to pre-book every dinner and show, and even then, got bad timeslots. In spite of this, My Time Dining was a disaster the first couple of nights. Throngs of upset customers crowded the third deck, asking for more reasonable times. Even more waited for hours to be seated. Housekeeping was minimally adequate; we had to ask multiple times for toilet paper, tissues, soap & blankets. We asked Guest Services at least three times to remove the barrier between our balcony patios, and no one ever helped. We did eventually have a great time with our My Time Dining team. Yay for Antra and Imad on table 300! Love those guys. That said, we'll stick with Freedom of the Seas, or try another cruise line for the next trip. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We chose this cruise to experience sailing on an Oasis class ship and to compare Royal Caribbean to other cruise lines we have sailed. This ship and crew far exceeded our expectations and provided us with a wonderful cruise. We found the ... Read More
We chose this cruise to experience sailing on an Oasis class ship and to compare Royal Caribbean to other cruise lines we have sailed. This ship and crew far exceeded our expectations and provided us with a wonderful cruise. We found the ships crew from the captain on down were all professional and genuinely happy to be on board, something we haven’t always found. The entertainment was outstanding and the Fine Line aqua show is not to be missed! If asked would we recommend sailing with Royal Caribbean on a Oasis class ship based on this last cruise, our response would be definitely yes! You can find anything from music to a quite cup of coffee in Central Park. The rest of the ship has such a wide choice of entertainment and food selections that you can not take it all in with the time you have and we had seven days! Coco Beach Club was a definite plus on our Perfect Day at Coco Cay. Yes it is an up charge but well worth it for the food and setting. We also booked the key and found it to be good value for the cost for the expedited boarding and reserved seating areas for the shows and the internet. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
One of the worst, most humiliating experiences of my life. Due to a noise complaint I was forced out of my room, forced to answer questions under duress to security, forced to talk to two doctors, and then locked in my room for 30 hours ... Read More
One of the worst, most humiliating experiences of my life. Due to a noise complaint I was forced out of my room, forced to answer questions under duress to security, forced to talk to two doctors, and then locked in my room for 30 hours despite the doctors telling them to let me go, that everything was fine. The ship captain is an egomaniac who made the decision and refused to talk to me. The doctor didn’t understand why they were doing it but wouldn’t get involved. Security was either on a power trip or were complete cowards. Even if none of that had happened, it was still a terrible liner. The rooms were terrible. Paint was scrapped, desk was chipped, heat didn’t work so the room was freezing and the shower water didn’t got hotter then lukewarm. Despite them promising to fix those last two, it never happened. The gym equipment was old and terrible. The free weights were all banged up. Half the treadmills couldn’t go over 7 mph. I did a body composition analysis and the machine was obviously broken as it popped out numbers that were clearly impossible. They still managed to charge $45 for it though. They screwed you with pricing for the wifi, $15 a day and it was the worst WiFi imaginable. It could barely load pictures. They charged an outrageous price for the drink package and all the bars desperately needed updating. All of the guns were broken, and nothing was refrigerated so if you got a drink with ice, it immediately melted, ruining the drink. You could never use the pool or hot tubs as they were always full of children. There needed to be some adult only locations so we could enjoy these amenities. The crew did there best but were clearly overworked and underpaid. It was hard not to tell bad for them, and this alone had me convinced never to book with royal Caribbean again. No one should Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
I'll start off by warning you this is a detailed review of our experience so far, on Majesty of the seas and we have only been in the ship a couple nights..hoping it turns around. The Royal Caribbean parking and check in process ... Read More
I'll start off by warning you this is a detailed review of our experience so far, on Majesty of the seas and we have only been in the ship a couple nights..hoping it turns around. The Royal Caribbean parking and check in process here in New Orleans is a clusterF#(K like no other, we have been on carnival from here and many RC cruises from other ports and none are as badly put together as the one here. Not sure if its any better if you park out in a public parking garage but thinking it maybe better to just do that, be cheaper, and wouldn't require you to walk over railroad tracks out in the open (glad it didnt rain on us and hope there is no rain upon return or we will be wet dogs). We tried to book our cruise about back about 2 months before the cruise date, for the 2nd person 60% off and kids free deal. We were told no more cabins were left to handle 4 people so our only choice was to pay for 2 cabins, got lucky enough to have them next door to each other, but boy are these cabins small and tight, yes these are even smaller than your typical cabins if you have been on any of the Oasis class ships. The ship shows its age, housekeeping and maintenance could be improved dramatically to at least make some of the simple really obvious issues better. Our sink does not drain, we have asked for that to be looked at 2 times and still isn't working right, the shower head in both cabins shoots water out from the hose so giving the kids a shower is a mess! The shower wall had mold on it, floors were not vacuumed in both rooms, the sink leaks from the bottom edge all over the shelf below, looks like its been doing that for several years from the damage its caused. I went to put my hats and stuff on the very top edge of the vanity and it had not been dusted off in months, so asked the room attendant to clean it off who than also found 3 old bars of soap up there as well. Room attendant Craig on deck 4, is who we have...unfortunately he is not happy to be on this ship, mad at the world, or maybe hates people of our ethnicity..regardless he doesnt speak to us, never officially introduced himself to us like they always do, actually had to ask 2 others and him who our attendant was just to find out who would be in our cabins each day, seemed upset about something and making it obvious so today i had to ask if we did something to make him upset or if everything was okay, needless to say that conversation went nowhere, he seemed bothered by us, so we have kindly asked him to not go back into our cabins to avoid any further issues with him...NOT LETTING HIS UGLY ATTITUDE RUIN OUR TRIP!! Our first day of the cruise we went to talk with dining and the first guy said we were all set for 530 dining but my parents were not at the table with us so we needed to go speak with his boss and she would make that happen. We went over to the head waiter Tamara i believe was her name, she said we were not on 530 and asked us who told us so, we showed her so she yelled for him to come over there and pretty much disciplined him right there in front of us, told him he was wrong, did not know how to look at his screen, needs to make sure he looks at the screen better and not to give guests the wrong info. We get it that he made a mistake but the way she treated him in front of us made him probably feel like jumping off the ship would be better and made us feel very uncomfortable as well. Sorrento Pizza and Compasd deli only keep 1 person on duty even when its about to be lunch time and lines are forming before 1130, RC needs to properly staff these areas so that people are not waiting so long for pizza, and staff isn't running like mad men trying to prepare, cook, cut, serve the items...its ridiculous that they do not better organize things for these type of areas for the rush hour times. We did report our issues with our Room Attendant to his supervisor, but the damage is done and we are stuck having to look at his grumpy ugly side eye ooks at us for the rest of the week, it sucks that 1 staff member can ruin the vibe of our trip when they make you feel like there is some sort of personal issue with us when we dont even know him. We have been loyal RC users and go to Emerald status with RC after this trip but unfortunately this is our 2nd time in the last 5 or 6 RC trips that we have had an issue with a room attendant, ironically both times the room attendant was from Jamaica, and as I understand RC is required to hire a certain amount of people from Jamaica as part of their deal to port in Jamaica but the service provided by the folks from Jamaica is not nearly as friendly and professional as you see from the people from China, India, or Mexico...im sure others will experience this same issue as we have, and hopefully RC will give them more training or not force these people into service level duties that require them to be friendly to people. Hoping our trip experience improves over the next few days, I used to love cruising but this hasn't been much of anything for us this time around...was hoping to just relax, not be stressed or worry about dumb sh!t while on vacation. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Just to forewarn this is mainly all a negative comment Lol. This ship is the 3rd smallest in the fleet, and built in the 90s. Boarding was not very smooth for us. Royal Caribbean never sent me any emails or a boarding pass or a ... Read More
Just to forewarn this is mainly all a negative comment Lol. This ship is the 3rd smallest in the fleet, and built in the 90s. Boarding was not very smooth for us. Royal Caribbean never sent me any emails or a boarding pass or a barcode or anything. Luckily I had downloaded the app so I at least had our room number but that was it. Ive been on one other cruise that was 10 years ago with carnival so I had no idea I was supposed to have a barcode to board the ship. Nowhere/nothing mentioned that. The room was tiny, which is to kind of be expected but it’s definitely smaller than the rooms I’ve had on carnival. We had an exterior room with a little round dirty window, Not to mention we are on our honeymoon and our bed is two twin beds just pushed up next to each other. We paid for the unlimited drink package, it was around $860 for two, but they were running out of stuff. Day 5 they Ran out of pina coladas. An excursion that I booked has been canceled on four separate occasions. The morning of that port, they were offering it again at a different time so I paid for it got off the ship and waited for an hour to find out that they had canceled it again. So that is now five times I have paid for the excursion just for it to be canceled afterwards. We sat and waited and asked multiple staff off the ship about the excursion and no one seemed to know anything. Finally 45 minutes past the time we were supposed to leave we found someone different to ask who then told us it had been canceled. Talking to the shore excursions desk is a nightmare and they are extremely rude and basically say that it’s not their problem and out of their control. Which is odd because its a royal caribbean excursion. There were Kids absolutely everywhere, When booking I was not aware that kids 12 and under sailed for free or that schools were out for Mardi Gras so maybe I can chalk that up to my mistake of not researching enough but I just had no idea it would be like this Almost every couple we have met have agreed that there are way too many kids. the ship has no adults only place, I was hoping there would be at least one adults only hot tub but no such luck, I did look on the map after I downloaded the app and did not see anything that said adults only but I just had my fingers crossed that there would be something. The hot tub capacity limit was five yet there would be literally 15 kids in the hot tub‘s with masks and snorkels on. Even the bars are full of kids which makes no sense to me how are bars allowed to have little kids. The only area that has no kids is the casino but you can smoke in there so that is just one big cloud of smoke. On port days some things on the ship are closed, not very many bars open, so be prepared to wait a while for a drink. At the pool there Nowhere to ever sit, and people reserve chairs with towels at the crack of dawn and there are just chairs sitting there with peoples towels all day long. I had even gotten up early two mornings to try and get chairs and by 8:30 there is still no where to sit. The policy On royal Caribbean is that if the chair is left unattended for 30 minutes or longer with no sign of returning they are supposed to take the belongings and put into lost and found but no one does that, and they do not even know their own policy. there was one day we saw six chairs with towels on them for over three hours my group finally decided to ask about them and everyone said they weren’t sure what to do. The staff renting out the towels told us to just sit there anyways so we did and then we got out at two hours later by the woman who had been reserving the chairs for five hours. Grand Bahama totally sucked. The port is not pretty at all, and the whole area is beat up from the hurricane. Its definitely not a sight to see. This is where our excursion got canceled but it was too late to book anything else so we got in a taxi to go to a nearby beach spent $40 for a very small and trashy beach area, that once you get to you have to pay for everything. At night there’s just not much to do for a couple in their 30s with no kids, there are quite a few bar areas but they are always empty and never music playing. There are a few game shows and things that go on throughout the cruise but they are pretty boring and all you win is a $.10 keychain. On the last day of the Cruise we finally found a hot tub that did not have 15 kids in it so we get in the hot tub to enjoy our last day with drinks and they start playing Disney movies on the screen with loudspeakers at 1 PM. it was so loud we couldnt even talk to our friends in the hot tub with us. Who wants to sit around the pool watching Disney movies at 1 o’clock in the afternoon?! In the casino, we were playing Texas hold em, the table was totally full, everyone having a great game, and at around 2 o’clock they decided to shut the game down completely because they did not have staff to keep the game going. Entertainment on the ship I would call mediocre. There were two comedians, one who we thought was great, the other was decent. There were multiple musical type shows, which we have zero interest in but to each their own. A couple nights theyd have an orchestra playing. And one night had a magician who was okay. Getting off the boat, was a COMPLETE NIGHTMARE!!! We were two hours late getting to the port which was fine because that was out of their control. But you can choose to either carry off your luggage yourself or you could check it in and the staff will take it off. We chose to take our luggage our self because we knew we would get off the boat and get out of there faster. There was absolutely zero organization and no order as far as who got off the boat when. Anyone on the ship who was carrying off their luggage was directed to all go to deck 4, so over half the ship they expected to be all in one tiny area with their luggage fighting to get off basically. Quickly that store got way too full so they started sending people up to higher decks. There are 4 elevators, and stairs. They were literally yelling at people to quickly go up floors, and to carry their luggage up the stairs and had no one there to help. I noticed quite a few elderly people struggling to get their things up the stairs while the staff just sat and watched them, offering zero help. So now everyone was spread out throughout the ship luggage in hand for about an hour and then they announce everyone to come back down to deck for her and they would start releasing everyone so then you are stuck in the exact same situation, everyone trying to get to the same deck at the same time. It was impossible!!! I don’t understand why they would not have each deck exit one floor at a time instead of telling everyone to meet on the same floor... The wifi was decent. I didnt love spending $100 for it, and it wouldnt stay connected for more than a few minutes, but it atleast worked off and on. This was our second cruise, bur first with royal caribbean. We will NEVER take another RC cruise again, and probably won’t ever even take a cruise in general again because this totally ruined my outlook on cruises. If you are in your 20s-30s with no kids, do not go on this ship. Even with all of the kids aside, there really is just not much to do. The pros were.....our server at dinner was phenomenal. His name was Jake and we loved him. Also most of the bartenders were very good and friendly. Coco Cay was great! It was a beautiful day and multiple places to sit without having to pay extra. It’s also nice that your drink package works on that island. We did an excursion snorkeled on our own and then just went to the pool. The downside I would think about Coco Cay is that there are lifeguards and ropes so that you cannot go out too far for or to certain areas which I’m sure is just for your safety but someone who has 100+ times I did not like being limited. The excursion we did was the stingray city and we absolutely loved it. The tour operators were great and we had more than enough time there. On the ship there was a gameshow called quest, that was a lot of fun! But it was only one night. In Key West we did an excursion called sail and snorkel and it was a lot of fun! However online it says 3 hours, but keep in mind its an hour boat ride out there, and an hour in. So its only one hour snorkel time. Also you dont get to drink until youre on the way back. The guys on the boat were awesome and so helpful. It was a good experience and i’d suggest it. Probably not for children though considering you are out in open water, and it can be a little rough. Also we stayed at towneplace suites in metarie the night before, and were allowed to leave our car there for the week for no extra cost. We ubered to and from the cruise at around $25 each time. When we got off the boat to help our Uber out we walked maybe half a mile so he could get to us easier and faster Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
All our other Royal cruises have been on voyager, freedom, and oasis class ships; so we knew going in that this would be a "fun sized" experience. Not caring for any of the Western Caribbean ports, we booked this cruise to spend ... Read More
All our other Royal cruises have been on voyager, freedom, and oasis class ships; so we knew going in that this would be a "fun sized" experience. Not caring for any of the Western Caribbean ports, we booked this cruise to spend time with family and relax, relax, relax. Mission Accomplished! Parking at the open air lot directly across from the ship, we were onboard in a matter of minutes. The walk-in eating areas are both located on deck 9. Plenty of seating and each of them have a coffee/juice/water station conveniently located away from the general seating. Loved spending time in the solarium, it has a retractable glass roof for those cool or rainy moments and is flanked by the park cafe (not like the one on Oasis) and a bar. With both a pool and a hot tub, we were set for the cruise. Had most breakfasts and sea day lunches in the main dining room. Very nice and relaxing, you can choose to be served or do a quick turn thru the buffet line. Other times we went to the windjammer, food was good (especially the build you own naco platter) and there were always seats available. We had 2 dinners in the MDR early seating and 2 much later on my time seating(to be with our late eating family). Food, selection, and service were all good. The remaining 3 nights were spent specialty dining with family. One night at each restaurant, the company was great, the value was not. The food and the ambience were ok, just not worth paying the extra money for. The shops were smaller, but still fun to walk through. The shows in the theater were entertaining and there were always seats available. The schooner bar seemed larger than on the larger ships. Be sure and spend some time in the R bar/Centrum area on deck 4. There always seemed to be something going on there, and it could be viewed from the upper decks. A great use of minimal space. The cruise director was uninspiring. Our room was an ocean view with a large (maybe 3'x3') window. Very small, but nicely laid out. HATED the shower curtain! By some science experiment gone wrong, it would always billow into the already tiny shower(the same size as the bigger ships) and cling to my back. I felt like Zorro with his cape. I never thought that I would miss the bigger ship showers with their non-intrusive doors! This fabric curtain is making me want to cancel our 10 day cruise next January on this same ship. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
I wanted to get a cruise since my mom recommended it, we purchased thru our OH travel agent a 8 day cruise thru Western Caribbean. Embarkation was disappointing (we were left outside the terminal without a place to sit, with cold weather. ... Read More
I wanted to get a cruise since my mom recommended it, we purchased thru our OH travel agent a 8 day cruise thru Western Caribbean. Embarkation was disappointing (we were left outside the terminal without a place to sit, with cold weather. Once we entered it was all better. The stateroom was okay, extremely clean and good though, our stateroom attendant was amazing he took great care of our room and of us during the entire cruise. The shore excursions were good, not the extraordinary I was expecting but good. We visited the ports of Cozumel, Roatan, Belize City, Costa Maya and Florida. The ship crew was amazing, our room attendant always keep our room extra clean, sometimes three times a day, people from guest services were always very helpful, our main dining servers, extraordinary, the bartenders amazing and very accommodating to our every need, want or requests...It was the best vacation ever!!!! Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Let me just say that this has been one of the worst cruises I've been on. The whole cruise has been one disappointment after another that has made what was supposed to be a happy and enjoyable birthday and 10th anniversary holiday ... Read More
Let me just say that this has been one of the worst cruises I've been on. The whole cruise has been one disappointment after another that has made what was supposed to be a happy and enjoyable birthday and 10th anniversary holiday into a depressing and boring cruise. From the horrible staff in the kids club that drove my 3yo daughter to tears, to the overcrowding of the ship so much that you can't get into anything, to the cancellation of the iFly due to weather but because of the overcrowding there's no more room for us, even with The Key. The food has been average, the entertainment has been ok but too packed. The room attendant even broke our personal soap holder. The baristas make coffees so hot that could burn holes in hell. We turned up for roller-skating on time to be told it was full and we needed to arrive earlier. We lined up for an hour in the hot sun waiting for the north star. The bionic bar keeps losing my drink orders even after they've been sent. The constant barrage of hard sales pitches from staff is annoying also. The lack of entertainment compared to the number of passengers is rediculous meaning so many people miss out. We paid for The Key to gain access to extra benefits but have found it absolutely useless as there's just too many people on the ship, other than the internet. And finally, theres been more than one occasion where I've walked into the toilets and there's been poo on the floor. The Ovation of the Seas ship has ruined not only my birthday but our 10th anniversary that we've been looking forward to for a few years. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Very nice ship. Excellent food in the buffet. Lots of variety. We had an inside room for 3 of us, including a 15-year-old teenager. Room was spacious enough for the 3 of us. Room was always very clean. I found the entertainment to be ... Read More
Very nice ship. Excellent food in the buffet. Lots of variety. We had an inside room for 3 of us, including a 15-year-old teenager. Room was spacious enough for the 3 of us. Room was always very clean. I found the entertainment to be lacking compared to entertainment on Carnival. We are not into art auctions, diamond shopping, or bingo. We don't consider those to be fun activities. There were a number of activities on the promenade deck, which made it almost impossible to get to the cafe to get a snack, coffee, or tea. Also even when arriving at the Star Lounge 20 minutes early, we were not able to get a seat for certain shows. We enjoyed all the ports of call. However, we found that Bonaire did not offer a lot of excursion options. We went swimming and snorkeling on our own. For the most part, the staff were friendly and helpful. We will take another Royal Caribbean cruise but probably on a different ship. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
I wanted to cruise the ABC islands without flying to San Juan, Seen this 9 night cruise from Port of Miami at a good rate. The only thing cruising from Port of Miami is it is so busy 8 ships in when we left and returned. This was our 11th ... Read More
I wanted to cruise the ABC islands without flying to San Juan, Seen this 9 night cruise from Port of Miami at a good rate. The only thing cruising from Port of Miami is it is so busy 8 ships in when we left and returned. This was our 11th cruise, so not new to cruising. The ship is old and has only one more cruise, as of now, before it goes in dry dock for refurbishing. The crew was excellent, food choice was great and good. In the main dinning room the servers and head waiter seen after my 10 year great grandson was tired of steak, they fixed him chicken fingers and fries!! The crew member in the Windjammer was so helpful in finding use seating for 6, when we first boarded. Bon remembered my name every time he seen me. My grandson and his wife enjoyed their evenings at the various places to party at night.We thoroughly enjoyed the theater productions. Our last cruise was on Carnival and they are still geared toward a young party crowd. Royal is my favorite, balcony cabins are larger, food and service in much better. Breakfast in the Windjammer or Main dinning room was always fresh and their breakfast fruit smoothies were delicious. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We chose this ship do to the many different ports in the Caribbean. The problem is on board this ship. We have never seen so many older people in my life on a cruise. Super boring on ship, except for the theatre shows. We too are around ... Read More
We chose this ship do to the many different ports in the Caribbean. The problem is on board this ship. We have never seen so many older people in my life on a cruise. Super boring on ship, except for the theatre shows. We too are around 60 but like other reviewers this was just to old of a crowd for us. Karaoke was lame, the vortex dance club maybe 8 people in there total. Never seen anything like it on any cruise before. The boat is smaller so has very limited activities. All these really old people just take up the pool chairs and read and most don't even get in the water. Really hard to get chairs by pool because RCI dose not enforce the saving of the chairs like their signs say. Read other reviews, this is the oldie but goodies ship. If you like the 50's and 60's music this is your boat. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
The good, the bad and the ugly. I’m not a fan of this ship’s design. The centrum design lacks functionality. It doesn’t offer enough room for large crowds to enjoy the entertainment and it acts as a chimney for cigarette smoke to ... Read More
The good, the bad and the ugly. I’m not a fan of this ship’s design. The centrum design lacks functionality. It doesn’t offer enough room for large crowds to enjoy the entertainment and it acts as a chimney for cigarette smoke to travel up to the upper floors and hallways. We were in a suite on floor 10, 5 floors above the casino, we could smell smoke just outside our room in the hallway. Park West, the art auction company that contracts with cruise ships, BEWARE!!!! They overcharge for their artwork and make false claims. Check them out on the internet and research before buying anything! RCI gets a percentage of everything sold onboard. The service on this voyage was excellent! The food on this voyage was average to slightly above average. They served Basa, Tilapia and several other substandard fish. The beef on the ship was all excellent! The noise in our suite from above was very loud. The entertainment was very good too. The itinerary was also very good. Do your research before booking any cruise and also read reviews so you don’t have any unexpected surprises! Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Voyager of the seas refurbishment. Johnny rockets & the large spa in the gym had been removed & replaced with suites. Great for RCL but not so great for customers who cannot afford a suite. Pinstripes class & suites now ... Read More
Voyager of the seas refurbishment. Johnny rockets & the large spa in the gym had been removed & replaced with suites. Great for RCL but not so great for customers who cannot afford a suite. Pinstripes class & suites now have what was the old diamond room & Diamond & diamond plus members are now removed from using the beautiful glass room upstairs to what I think was a old cigar room next to the Star lounge. It seats about 30 people. We had 400+ Diamond people on our cruise. On past cruises if the ship had a lot of diamond members they would open up the star lounge or use the Viking lounge but instead RCL hired it out for private functions. We were a group of 20 & to get together we were forced to use the cafe promenade to catch up each day. RCL seem to be looking after their bottom line the almighty dollar & not their loyal customers. I agree that they should look after pinnacle class as they have been loyal as diamond class are, but customers who book only once but pay $’s for a suite who are not loyal seem to get the run of the ship. I wasn’t impressed also that RCL have booked out rooms that are for everyone to access limiting everyone to seating & places to enjoy. RCL should not book out public lounges for private functions as we all pay to use the Viking lounge & star lounge. Hopefully this isn’t the start of each refurbish of the fleet. We were all left very disappointed & will avoid the voyager of the seas. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Six nights Melbourne and Hobart cruise. 19th of Feb to 25th Feb 2020 From start to finish, what an experience! Arriving at the Sydney Cruise terminal it was very busy and there was lots of Royal Caribbean ground staff helping direct ... Read More
Six nights Melbourne and Hobart cruise. 19th of Feb to 25th Feb 2020 From start to finish, what an experience! Arriving at the Sydney Cruise terminal it was very busy and there was lots of Royal Caribbean ground staff helping direct passengers to the baggage and boarding terminals. The boarding process was very fast, no issues using passport or drivers licence. It took around 2 minutes extra this time due to the corona virus questions and information. I found this to be good practice by royal Caribbean, helping ease the tension and worries of the virus. Once on board we proceeded to the pool deck (11) and began sampling some of the drinks that Voyager had on offer. We were not limited by price as my group had purchased the deluxe drinks package many months before hand for around $70 AU per day, great value! As this includes Tea/coffee/fruit juices/all post mix and canned soft drinks and all top shelf alcohol and cocktails. After a few drinks we made our way to windjammers buffet restaurant, WOW! What a selection! Food ranging from Australian/American/Indian/Chinese/Italian and much more! Heaps to choose from! Salad bars/ hamburger and hot dog station, huge range of desserts. The buffet was busy as it was day 1 lunch, and there was plenty of staff working! Collecting plates, cleaning tables and drink service. There was a medium Que to get in but was fast moving with little to no wait, and very pleasant staff to greet you. Gotta love royal Caribbean motto's washy washy! The staff encouraging guests to clean their hands before eating. After lunch were went to check out what our cabin was like, we had balcony room (9222) it was very clean and well presented. Bathroom and shower were clean with fresh towels. When leaving my room we were greeted by our room attendant whom asked our names and introduced himself. He also wished me happy birthday, showing he makes the effort to learn about his guest before they arrive. Over the next 2 days we explored the ship, sampling their dinning and bar options throughout the ship. Casino bar and schooner bar are great! Good professional service and very quick. We also ate at the main dining room. This was really impressive the amount of people and quality of the food was top notch. Our 2 waiters were well presented and were out to please, and that they did! We visited Tasmania first stop, awesome! Easy disembark and boarding and plenty to see and do. Unfortunately, 2 hours out of the Tasmania port we had to turn the ship around and return to port due to a medical emergency. The captain was very informative, updating passengers on the current situation. Our next stop was Melbourne, it was a very nice city. We visited a local casino and had a few drinks and a quick flutter. Once everyone was on board at 4.30pm the ship left heading back out to sea. And you would never guess, but yes 4 hours after leaving the port of Melbourne the ship had to turn around again due to a medical emergency. We arrived back in port at around 8.30pm and it was beautiful! Melbourne city at night was a site to see! Thank you for a special photo opt RCI. It was a shock to me to see that Royal Caribbean would turn the whole ship around and return to port to help one of the guests! This was awesome! It gave us all an easy feeling, the care that they take to look after us is exceptional. I do however frown upon those few rude guests that made such a big deal of the event, and complaining and carrying on like little children about the situation. Human Life means a hell of a lot more than the little bit of money you could have invested at the casino. Yes, due to returning to port means that the casino opening would be delayed and would have to wait until it was out of Australian waters before opening their services. But over all, it was fantastic to see Melbourne again from a different point of view. We then headed back to Sydney, only to realize that this was the final stretch of our holiday. Talking among our self, wishing we had booked for longer! Overall from start to finish, I rate my cruise on Voyager of the seas a solid 9.7 out of 10. The entertainment was well chosen for the demographics aboard, good variety and loads to do. Guest’s facilities are in the plenty! The ships pools and multiple spas are great to relax in, the large spas on deck 11 are heated, and was a good meeting/ chatting place on a cold 8c Tasmanian afternoon. I highly recommend giving this ship and its crew a go! And hopefully you enjoy it as much as I Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
From England and booked online via Royal Caribbean. First cruise but the destination was the real seller having nothing to compare to. Emirates flight was great to Dubai. Plenty of security at port but no problems with that. Carry all ... Read More
From England and booked online via Royal Caribbean. First cruise but the destination was the real seller having nothing to compare to. Emirates flight was great to Dubai. Plenty of security at port but no problems with that. Carry all paperwork and credit card to hand. Pre paid deluxe drinks package and most shore excursions. Ship - previously said nothing to compare to and a little nervous having read bad reviews from others. Spotless and absolutely no concerns on the ship. Scared of deep water and never wanted to cruise - NO safety concerns onboard and have already booked with Marella for new destinations but I am nervous this will not live up to the jewel! My daughter 11 did not want to go to kids clubs but loved her time onboard including mini golf and rock climbing. Enjoyed the fact we had deluxe drinks packages as tried a few cocktails I wouldn’t normally plus I paid for peace of mind. Probably didn’t get my money worth but again knew what i was paying for. Evening entertainment was great. I was tired after that and didn’t stay out till midnight or see any partying. Food was lovely. Staff always friendly! I am a bit of a nuisance and kept an eye on the cabin tv to make sure no charges - We did get a sneaky charge for cocktails the day at Sir Bani Yas however I rang from my room and they were removed immediately. I left with zero charges on my account as I wanted! I took dirham for onshore and dollars. I came home with money as we only had odd coffee and fridge magnet at each destination plus a scarf for the mosque. Shore excursions were great apart from Dubai. We ended up going back into Dubai via free shuttle afterwards. We literally rushed through the mall to Burj Khalifa and drove round the island for hours without food stop! It was super annoying so went back to mall afterwards. Knowing that there are usually free shuttles on my next cruise unless we want to pre book a activity we will make own way/free shuttle into centre, also saves waiting for people that are late getting on the coach..again the Dubai excursion left us 40 minutes late due to waiting for people. Not too long but from 8:30 till 3pm no food stop I was frustrated. UAE is amazing full stop just respect the culture or don’t go simple. You can dress as you would at home but did see a group of girls from ship going to Abu Dhabi mall with swimwear and see through cover ups on- my husband laughed as did others. I only felt the ship move the day at sea and I was probably overthinking it. I did not enjoy the day at sea as much because I like me space. I did sit round the pool for my daughter but not my thing. Day at sea couldn’t get spot around the pool so we sat on chairs on another deck, it was red hot and I actually preferred the spots away from everyone looking out at the sea ( i thought I’d never enjoy looking at the open sea!) overall I loved waking up at a nee destination and getting excited for the day! Ps the coffee shop was lovely. Main restaurant food lovely. Windjammer lovely. NO COMPLAINTS. Just nervous Marella discovery 2 won’t be as good! Considering this was older and smaller than the RC fleet we will try Harmony or another one as the company was so easy and no hassle at all. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We have cruised 7 times. We have been on carnival, Royal Caribbean, Holland America, and NCL. We hadn’t been on one of the mega ships. We were a family of 5. Booked an adjoining stateroom forward deck 11. 11446 and 11448. Interior. ... Read More
We have cruised 7 times. We have been on carnival, Royal Caribbean, Holland America, and NCL. We hadn’t been on one of the mega ships. We were a family of 5. Booked an adjoining stateroom forward deck 11. 11446 and 11448. Interior. Loved the location. Didn’t feel much movement until the last night. Two floors below kids club. Getting on the ship was the easiest I have ever experienced. I seriously just keep walking, showed my id and got on the ship. Food in MDR and Windjammer was great. We loved our servers at 5:30 in the MDR. Shout out to Arvesh and Wem. We didn’t feel that we had to wait in lines much at all. Not sure if it was because of corona virus fears but the ship didn’t seem full. We were loving that. The only time we felt that the ship was full was on sea days. Pool deck (15 and 16) were extremely full. Everyone was saving chairs with towels from like 7 am on. RCL was not moving towels if people didn’t attend to them within a reasonable amount of time. I had purchased the 3 night dining package. I would not book this again. Went to Chopps twice and was as a whole quite disappointed. Chopps was very loud and had very poor ambiance. Didn’t seem like a special meal but rather routine. Waiter was interested the first time but I didn’t tip extra as it was already included and I paid prepaid gratuities. Second night we had the same waiter and he was very disinterested. None of the other specialty restaurants were visited by us. Labs fee was beautiful. If you have kids just go to Columbus beach. Take the ferry over early. Very quiet. At the far end of the cove along the rocks (towards the ship) there is a nice small area with some coral, lots of fish and vegetation. My kids loved it. In Puerto Rico we went to the military fort. I have a National Park pass so it was free for us. We just walked there. Very close to cruise ships. We didn’t get off at St Thomas, we wanted a break. As a whole we loved the ship, feel like we didn’t even see it all or experience all she had to offer. Kids club was easy to use. Lots of kids there. Our kids did complain that there wasn’t much to do at times and that the staff doesn’t really control the video game areas very well (kids hogging machines). Our kids are hockey players so they did like the ice skating times. The ice skating show was the best show I have ever seen on a cruise ship, just simply amazing. I had to leave the aqua 80’s show early due to a 5 year old, my wife says the last Half hour was incredible. Compared to other cruise lines (we went on the carnival vista recently) I felt that the oasis had better food, but RCL does like to nickel and dime more. Alcohol was prohibitively expensive ($12-14 dollars for house merlot, $9 for a bottle of Budweiser. Just stupidly expensive. Compared to carnival we felt that more specialty offerings were included (bar b que was included on carnival, oasis was extra fee, burger joint on carnival included, Johnny rockets on RCL is extra). We already paid a lot of money for the cruise, so this was off putting. We never went hungry though. Casino was extremely tight. Didn’t win anything at all on the slots, wouldn’t go to The casino again if I went back on the oasis. Overall thought it was a great cruise and RCL delivers, just expect extra included costs for some things. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
I wanted to love RC. We‘ve cruised many times but this was our first on RC. My family and I were less than wowed. I realize the ship is heading to dry dock soon so perhaps they’ll make some necessary repairs but truly, it should have ... Read More
I wanted to love RC. We‘ve cruised many times but this was our first on RC. My family and I were less than wowed. I realize the ship is heading to dry dock soon so perhaps they’ll make some necessary repairs but truly, it should have gone to dry dock before this sail. Due to a bad propeller our itinerary was initially altered 3 months from our cruise. We received notice but truly, 3 months out, what can we do. Our itinerary was further altered at sea when Coco Caye was deemed to be too windy with a chance of poor weather. I understand from other individuals on the cruise that this is NOT rare. Imagine how disappointed my kids were given they’ve seen a million commercials about “the perfect day.” Stopping at Labadee was a poor substitute. In addition, my daughters swimsuits got mixed up with the dirty towels and, after having our room searched first, we were told it was never found. Wonder why the laundry staff rooms were not searched like ours? Seems some staffs daughter will have a nice new swimsuit. The aqua show was rescheduled more than once due to rocking of the boat. . . Perhaps that bad propeller is more important overall? The arcades had many games that do not work, the food was ok at best, the ice cream shop ran out of mint chip ice cream, everything is a very expensive additional charge, the rooms were worn and tired and the customer service was just ok compared to Disney and surprisingly Carnival. Seems to me issuing a $38 credit for the stolen swimsuit would have been a minor token of goodwill and good customer service. I wish I had researched cruise lines and boats better. Sorry RC, you fall terribly short on MANY accounts. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
My wife and I chose this cruise to surprise my folks and relatives, and it was an amazing success!!! My wife and I flew into Fort Lauderdale from Chicago the day of the cruise. This makes my wife a nervous wreck, but seeing as how we ... Read More
My wife and I chose this cruise to surprise my folks and relatives, and it was an amazing success!!! My wife and I flew into Fort Lauderdale from Chicago the day of the cruise. This makes my wife a nervous wreck, but seeing as how we booked last minute it saved us almost $1000 dollars on airfare, hotel, and food. Amazingly, from the time we landed to embarkation was less than an hour. We were shocked how smooth the transfer went. Having traveled with my folks before we knew they were creatures of habit, and we knew exactly where they would be first - The Cafe' Promenade. My ma was shocked and started crying. The general appearance of the ship was usual Royal Caribbean very nice, but the Old Girl is worn and showing many of her blemishes. It is very noticeable that the ship is ready for a makeover. We stayed in 11607 Central Park Balcony. We had three rooms all in a line, and we had the room attendant open up partitions so it was like we had one GIGANTIC balcony. It was great for morning breakfast. We love the Central Park Balcony rooms! Our room attendant was less than attentive which is the first time this has ever happened on any of our cruises, but she did her job I guess. Dining we ate at two specialty restaurants, Izumi and Chops. Izumi was great! We had an amazing chef (Gerry from the Phillipines), and our waiter Kirk kept the Saki flowing. The company around the grill was outrageous. Seeing as we were all family how could I say otherwise. We love our Hibachi! Chops on the other hand was OK. While the steaks served in the restaurant may be great for some, they just don't compare to what we get back home in Chicago. We have decided unless we get a free upgrade we probably won't be eating at Chops anymore. The other 5 dinners we utilized MDR on Deck 3, and had MTD. Seating 8 people every night at 7:30 was a challenge, but the staff did a great job accommodating our needs. Our servers Davis and Petrus were outstanding. The entertainment was great! Per usual. I think it was the 10th time we have seen Mama Mia. It did not disappoint. Thank god we saw the the aqua show the first night as I think the rest of the shows were cancelled due to rough seas. The comedians were very funny. We enjoyed the piano bar, Rising Tide (during the Beatles tribute), and Dazzles. We went to country night at Dazzles. The band was OUT OF THIS WORLD! It is something everyone has to experience. Your eyes won't believe what your ears are hearing. I will just leave it at that. lol On a funny note my wife and I participated in one of the trivia contests. It was hard for us to find partners, but the two ladies who asked us to join them would not be let down. My wife Barbara and I cleaned up. We won that night's trivia contest. Activities were great. I did my first day flow rider, but mostly hung out at the pool. For the life of me, I can not comprehend how Royal has not figured out how to heat the pools. It is MADDENING!!!! I am not asking it to be hot tub hot, but it would be nice to enter the pool and not suffer a slight heart attack every day. Does anyone know why this is? The service around the pool was great. We had the ultimate drink package. For the first time in 11 cruises I believe Royal won the Battle of the Booze. I also believe Royal is very close to out pricing themselves with the UDP (72 bucks w/ tip is at the limit as far as I'm concerned). I have heard rumblings that Royal screwed up in 2019 offering $18 UDP's and now they are trying to recoup those losses. Which makes sense seeing as how we paid 55 bucks p/d just 5 months earlier on Anthem. Now on to the bad. The ports. Coco Cay was cancelled due to weather. Disappointing, but understandable. Switching out St. Thomas for San Juan was terrible. I have had it with Royal continually bait and switching itineraries. Sure they always say you can get your money back, but by that time most people have set vacation days and air fare. They know they have you. Always sending the ships to San Juan is just another example of Royal nickel and diming the guests. And the thruster excuse has been used to death. I will definitely go on Allure again once she has been beautified. We are traveling on Symphony 25 July 2020 (fingers crossed) and Odyssey 26 March 2021. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Chose this cruise as with children we love the variety of things to do and the excursions in the Caribbean are far more child-friendly than European ones making it worth the extra flight time. From start to finish STAR class gave us the ... Read More
Chose this cruise as with children we love the variety of things to do and the excursions in the Caribbean are far more child-friendly than European ones making it worth the extra flight time. From start to finish STAR class gave us the Wow factor. From arrival at the cruise terminal being ushered through our own dedicated security line, meeting our genie and being on the Ship, in our suite with a bottle of welcome champagne and less than 5 minutes later all our luggage arrives. Being our first experience in Star class we just let Jay our genie sort and plan our entire week. All i can say is if you have a cruise on the Allure coming up then ask for Jay as your genie. He was amazing. Appeared out of nowhere all over the ship as if he's tracked us using GPS to surprise us with delights and treats. Ports were fine. St Maarten was pleasant and took the children on a boat excursion to Mahao Bay to watch the planes, swim in the sea etc, a wander round the shops and back onto the boat to find Jay's surprise for the children of a pop-up Pirate tent, balloons galore and mermaid tail blankets waiting in our suite. San Juan we had been to before so just had a wander around with the children as it was a short stop and not many child-friendly excursions available. Unfortunately storms were forecast in the Bahamas for the Saturday so the captain cancelled our trip there. We were slightly disappointed but this was outside of everyone's control and the captain changed course and took us to Labadee instead which was a very pleasant experience on barefoot beach with the children. Specialty dining was incredible. Chops was the stand out for me but 150 central park also had a wow-factor. We tried everything we could in a week and still couldn't get round all of them. One night I was even allowed a night off the children, wife and mother-in-law and went to Chef's table. This was an amazing experience which will stay in my memory for a very long time. amazing food, delicious paired wines and a service and experience beyond anything else I'd ever experienced on a cruise. We couldn't get the eldest child out of adventure ocean and she was asking every day to go back she absolutely loved it. Also used the babysitting chreche a couple of times to have a more peaceful meal which went down very well and the younger two seemed to enjoy this. Entertainment and shows were very good. Mama Mia and Oceanaria being the two standout ones from the week and well worth the watch. We even caught a second showing of Oceanaria from our balcony late one evening! Overall a wonderful cruise and a fantastic experience. Not sure how I'm going to go back from Star class after having Jay as our genie but without the amazing offer we got this time around it's just out of our price range usually. If you manage to find an offer and a deal and wonder if it's worth the splurge - 100% it is, you won't be disappointed! Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
This was our first RCCL cruise, we've also done Princess and Carnival several times. I liked the cruise a lot, but probably will not sail with RCCL again. PROS: - The crew was extremely friendly and the service was outstanding. ... Read More
This was our first RCCL cruise, we've also done Princess and Carnival several times. I liked the cruise a lot, but probably will not sail with RCCL again. PROS: - The crew was extremely friendly and the service was outstanding. - The ship was very clean, including the bathrooms. There were Purrell hand santiizers everywhere. There was a hand washing station at the buffet that you had to walk through to get to the buffet. - The ship looked very modern and stylish, with nice artwork and contemporary decor. - We had an ocean-view balcony. The room was plenty big for myself, my wife, and our two small children. The trundle beds (converted from a couch) was comfortable for the kids. I slept in one of the twin beds one night and it was fine for me too. The king bed my wife and I shared the other nights was comfortable too, though the pillows were a little hard. The balcony was sufficiently big to put our feet up an relax. The door had a child lock and sealed off the sound from outside too, we never heard anything and there was no soot on the balcony either (we were towards the back of the ship). The showed was comparatively big with the round "glass" door providing a lot of space, and good water pressure too. - There were a lot of activities on the boat and a lot too do all the time (probably too much to do, we had to skip some things). -The shows we went to were fantastic, especially the Columbus musical. That was really really good. The Aqua Theater show (the Fine Line) was also really good with incredible diving and acrobatics. I've never seen shows that good on a ship, it rivaled Vegas. - Roatan is a great stop, probably one of the best beaches we've been to in the Caribbean. Go to West Bay beach and walk around the West End area if you go. It's great! -Embarkation was smooth and fast. We got there at 10 and we were on the ship by 10:45. You should scan your passport using the app so that you can use the expidited line to get on faster. -Debarkation was very fast, we walked off the ship at 9am (we chose to stat on a little later) and were off the boat and through customs 10 mins later using their facial recognition. One of our bags got lost (someone wasn't paying attention and walked off with our bag, but left it outside the terminal when they realized their mistake). The port staff helped track it down after about 20 mins of us looking inside. I was very relieved they found it, but it would be great if they had a more secure way for people to confirm their bags (e.g. showing some form of ID, or using a barcode scanning process). - The comedian they had was really good, but he did the same act each night. Carnival has great comedians and they do a different act every night, so you can go every night and see something good. CONS - The food was sub-par all around. The dinner in the MDR had a pretty repetitive menu and the cuts of meat were not very good. I wasn't looking forward to dinner. The dessert were generally uninspired and they only had a warm cookie or brownie one night (I really like warm desserts with ice cream on top, rather than just a cold cake). Food is the main reason I cruise, so that deficiency on this ship is a show-stopper for me. I only ate in one specialty restaurant (Izumi Hibachi, which was very good itself and the show there was fantastic), but the food in the MDR and Windjammer were mediocre at best. I think they are trying to get you to buy the upsold specialty restaurants. I thought the food on Carnival was much better, especially since I like burgers and pizza. The Guy's burgers on Carnival are really good and their pizza is better than HOTS too. The breakfast and desserts on Carnival were also much better, they have melting chocolate cake every night. - The cruise director and his staff were not very visible for the first few days of the sailing. One of the questions at trivia on the third day was "what's the name of your cruise director." I think it speaks volumes that that was a trivia question. The atmosphere on the ship was not as fun as past cruises we've been on. - The stop at Costa Maya was not very interesting. We got off the ship for 30 mins and then got back on. - The ice skating was only open for a few hours the entire cruise and you had to get there early to get a slot. We ended up having to skip that due to its limited availability. - The kids club was ok. My 4 year old liked it a lot, but my 7 year old did not have such a great time there. He really wanted to play a specific video game they had there, but there was another kid that was hogging it the whole time and the staff did nothing to enforce time limits or sharing among the kids, despite me asking them multiple times to ensure my son got a turn. - Elevator wait times were not great, but I recommend using the stairs if you aren't too lazy and if you aren't disabled. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Our teenaged son has gazed longingly at Royal Caribbean ships whenever we've been in the same port. He was thrilled by the size and variety of activities he could see. As a gift to him, we purchased a holiday cruise on Anthem of the ... Read More
Our teenaged son has gazed longingly at Royal Caribbean ships whenever we've been in the same port. He was thrilled by the size and variety of activities he could see. As a gift to him, we purchased a holiday cruise on Anthem of the Seas since the port was easy to reach and the date worked for his school vacations. The Anthem is a big ship. We logged thousands of steps each day just getting from the elevator/stairway lobby in the middle of the ship to our room in the aft. This is the first ship I've been on (my 8th cruise) which had only two banks of elevators. It was really inconvenient and we often wished for better access to the rear of the ship. Our cabin was a balcony on deck 9. The layout was good, though with the sofa bed open we struggled to get to the balcony. Closet space was adequate and decor is pleasant. The balcony was very nice - we liked having the footstools (which we could see are not available on other RCCL ships). My husband found the bed too hard and complained that it hurt his back. I didn't mind it. The bathroom is small but fine for one person. Sharing it between three of us was somewhat of a challenge. Little things made it harder, such as a hook design that dumped towels on the floor whenever they were brushed up against. Public areas in the ship were attractive. The layout of the main public decks (4 and 5) was confusing as they are divided into two zones (The Royal Promenade an the Via) but telling those apart was difficult. It took us longer to learn the layout of this ship than we have before. The various bars and entertainment spaces were comfortable. One thing Royal does really well is moving large numbers of people around. Though our sailing was nearly full, the ship rarely felt crowded and we almost always had a choice of places to sit. Getting on and off the ship was a breeze - the best we've ever seen. Kudos to Royal for that. The one place we had consistent issues with crowds was the jogging track. As it winds in between other activities it was often blocked and walking and/or jogging was frustrating. We wished for the dedicated promenade decks we've had on other ships. The Anthem has a lot of activities suited for active families. Our teen made friends immediately and went off with his posse every day. My husband and I were not really interested in bumper cars or scavenger hunts so many of the activities were wasted on us. I think for the many families on board these choices were great. For us, the lack of alternative adult programming was a disappointment. We did enjoy the lectures on astronomy given on sea days by an amateur astronomer from New Jersey. The evening entertainment was a real disappointment to us. We saw the three shows done by cruise performers and thought all three were weak. The Gift is visually stunning with great costumes and sets. But the plot, such as it is, was almost impossible to follow and the characters were so undeveloped we often couldn't tell them apart. Spectra's Cabaret had lots of interesting acrobatics, but they were done in the dark which may have created a mood but it left us wondering what was happening. We Will Rock You, like The Gift, had good sets and costumes but felt like it had been cut down, badly, from a longer show. I should note that the performers seemed very talented - it was the material they were given that was the problem. On top of all of that, the shows were all very loud. And each was introduced by Mercedes, the cruise director, who screamed every word she said every time we saw her. There were three guest entertainers on the cruise, all comedians of a sort. The best of the bunch was ventriloquist Ronn Lucas who did a funny show that featured a great bit using a guest in a dummy mask. We really enjoyed that show. Impressionist Jeff Tracta was a mix. Some of his observations on pop culture were cute but when he ventured into political commentary it left us very uncomfortable. We spoke the next day with some other guests who said they also felt the political humor was inappropriate. The final night Steven Thomas did a tired set of jokes about his wife, his in laws and farting that were just not funny. The biggest disappointment on the cruise for us was the food and the overall dining experience. This was the one place where it was obvious that Royal had thousands of people on board. The main dining rooms were crowded and service felt rushed. We were surprised to see that the menus changed only slightly each night, so that we had few new items to choose from. Most of the entrees were under seasoned and uninteresting. The Windjammer, though not overly crowded, felt more like a school cafeteria than a buffet. It was clear that the staff prepped for meals well in advance. The fresh vegetables often looked tired - wilted or discolored. The entrees were a broad mix - these too repeated several times in the cruise. It was the first cruise I've been on where I was sure we were getting leftovers. Worst of all were the desserts. With the exceptions of the cookies, we almost never had anything good for dessert. We did try one specialty restaurant - Jaime's Italian. There the service and food were much better. But for $170 for three people, one would hope so. On other cruise lines specialty restaurants charge an additional fee - with the idea that you've paid for your meals in your ticket but a small extra fee will give you an extra special meal. On Royal we paid for our meals in the ticket, then spent twice what we would have on land for a meal that was better but not as good as we could have had on land for less. Overall the staff were pleasant and friendly. Our cabin steward did the minimum. The ship was not as clean as others we've been on but it was good enough. We had the usual mix ups with guest services. One thing that confounded us was the Royal App. As the cruise went o it was less and less accurate. We felt like there was no on on board who could update it so it just became useless. Which is a shame as it could have been very helpful. We stopped at Port Canaveral and Nassau, both of which we've visited before. Our third stop was Coco Cay. That was really nice. Royal has done a great job developing the island. We were there along with Mariner of the Seas and it still didn't feel crowded. Our son liked the water park and we enjoyed stretching out in the beach chairs and swimming in the sea. The Anthem has lots of strengths as a ship and I think for many people it would be a great fit. It was not the right ship for us but it could be a perfect fit for others. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We'd sailed Princess and Norwegian before, but this was our first Royal cruise. Food The food and service was better on Princess (I still dream of how the most simple dishes like fettucine alfredo were somehow mind-blowing!), ... Read More
We'd sailed Princess and Norwegian before, but this was our first Royal cruise. Food The food and service was better on Princess (I still dream of how the most simple dishes like fettucine alfredo were somehow mind-blowing!), but Royal's main dining room food was decent enough we'd sail with them again. The Windjammers Buffet was especially ample and fresh -- and we are not typically "Buffet people." (With kids, you make concessions!) The service was a little slow in the main dining areas for breakfast and lunch, though the wait staff was very friendly, professional, and accommodating at all times. Waits were not very long, but if you plan on making reservations while on board, you can run into a few snags -- you'll never get through to customer service by phone, many reservations are all booked up, and the app system does not always work if you need to make/break a reservations. Dining highlights included the mushroom soup, hashbrowns, baklava, mussels, and lobster tail night. I'd read negative reviews of Sorrento's pizza, but we ate there soooo many times. We're from Buffalo, land of amazing pizza, and it was good enough for us. Compared to other cruise lines, the specialty dining is a bit nickel-and-dimey. The drink package was well worth it, though I didn't use it for the "specialty coffee" as much as I thought I would, since the coffee lines were super long and apparently, a caramel macchiato is conveniently considered "food." The ability to use the dining/drink package on Coco Cay was incredible and generous -- what a perk! Other cruise lines would be wise to follow suit. Entertainment Sadly, we missed the "We Will Rock You" show (AND its rescheduled time) due to wild rocking waves on the way back home. "Spectra's Cabaret" was interesting and had a few decent numbers. The plot for "The Gift" was confusing at times, but overall it was tantalizing with moving sets, Broadway caliber music/dance numbers, and cool BMX tricks. The arcade area was lacking, with not much for the little ones to do and a lot of the machines out of order. Bumper cars are for people 42 inches tall AND at least five years of age... that was not immediately clear to us... our 4-year-old wall tall enough but not old enough, which was quite a melt-down of disappointment for him! Karaoke did not have great song selection and booked solid within the first 10 minutes. Many of the adult entertainment options were at an extra charge, so we didn't have much to do after dropping the kids off at the Kids Club. We had really looked forward to the on-board library for kids' bedtime story books... but there was literally nothing for children and the adult selections were little to be desired as well. There were a few puzzles and a chess set there if you're so inclined. We did like the Two70 Club and visited the upper balcony for movies, watching "Abominable" and "Maleficient 2" there. We liked the music playing around the ship -- the kids called the main concourse "the dance party." We went to the official "family dance party" -- the kids liked the glow sticks, but there was hardly room to dance in the tiny Two70 (they should've had it at Sea Plex!) and the music was horrrrrrible (like YMCA/disco/wedding DJ horrible); the entertainment was fresher aboard Norwegian. Ports In Florida, we rode the airboats and went to a wild animal preserve. I can't recommend this excursion enough! We saw so many gators! We'd taken a similar excursion with Norwegian nine years ago and saw zero gators on the tour. The hosts were super friendly and informative. You feel like you're flying on board the airboat. It's a birdwatcher's dream with roseatte spoonbills, herons, egrets, and other large feathered creatures. You'll even spot cows grazing in the marshes. If you're considering Nassau's Blue Lagoon Island DON'T DO IT. This excursion was a nightmare. Perhaps if you're booking the dolphin or sea lion or ray encounter, it would be worthwhile, but we booked the "Deluxe Beach Break" for a peaceful ocean day with the kids. As soon as we got off the ferry, we stepped into disorganized chaos with no signs or personnel to tell us where our "reserved hammock and beach chairs" were located. Spoiler alert - there IS no hammock, and beach chairs are first come, first served! We eventually hiked across the whole island and managed to find the last one available (in full sun). According to the bartender, there were 5,000 people on this tiny island. FIVE THOUSAND! We had come here for the dolphin tour nine years ago and it was simply the dolphin/sea lion preserve with a small hotdog stand. Now it's all built up, but lacks proper planning to provide a decent experience. I waited 45 minutes for a beer at the bar. People were ordering fancy blender drinks and a-la-carte food ahead of me. The staff waited for the food to be made and brought out before processing the next drink order -- unreal! I finally abandoned the line without a beer and went to another bar, where I waited "just 20 minutes." At least there - people weren't ordering food! We waited until a bit later to eat because the place was completely swarmed upon disembarkation.Good luck if you arrive hungry. The buffet was mediocre at best and left me feeling like I'd just paid $95 for a lukewarm burger and dry rice. My husband suspects the chicken gave him food poisoning. So now, frustration is in full swing, I wanted time in the ocean. You have to walk out pretty far into the crowded zone near the inflatable aquatic park to find water waist-deep. You might see one or two fish, but there isn't much to see. The kids enjoyed looking for shells, but I wouldn't say it's a good beach for shelling by any stretch of the imagination. The description implied the aquatic park was included in the deluxe ticket -- IT'S NOT. You also need to pay $20 per person for the mandatory life preserver! The kids were super disappointed, but who wants to pay another $80 for us to go over there after paying $360 for a ferry and a lousy lunch? We took the first jam-packed double-decker ferry back to the ship as soon as we could. It was the worst vacation day I'd ever had! Coco Cay, on the other hand, was a well-managed, first-rate experience. The perfect day we had from start to finish made up for all the hassle of traveling with two young children. We didn't pay for any of the excursions, instead "winging it" with the free attractions. Music performances greet you off the boat and there are signs and staff members there to direct you wherever you want to go. We walked everywhere easily, but there are trams if you want a ride as well. The kids played on the pirate ship right off the dock and the neighboring water playground for about a half hour. Then we headed to Chill Island to spend the day in sand and surf. Everyone was nice, pointing us to an open umbrella chair. We saw so many crabs, iguanas, and fish swimming near the rocks -- it was cool! The buffet was streamlined for efficiency with no waits. You could choose burgers, hot dogs, chicken, salads, or tacos. It was all fresh and stocked. We found a table with ease and watched the local chickens run around. We didn't eat at Captain Jack's, but we heard the wings and fries were really good. The bar lines were short and the mixed drinks were very tasty even if you're not a mixed drink sort of person. Sea Days Next time perhaps we'll take a spring sailing instead. The sea days were cold, rainy, blustery in February. We had one day where we could enjoy the outdoor pool and splash pad area. The kids loved it! The big TV was cool, but it's hard to find a spot to sit and watch a movie on such a huge ship. Shopping We didn't do much shopping on board. However, I will say this - if you are a lady in need of feminine hygiene products, you are doomed! You'll find the most rudimentary Tampax and paper-thin light liners. Service We got to know the staff of the Princess ship better, but the staff on Royal was dedicated. It's nice having the same waiters in the main dining room. We didn't see our room steward much, but he was busy keeping the room clean while we were away, so that was good. They delighted the kids with towel and napkin animals. If you need any service by phone, forget about it. If you manage to get through by phone at all, expect a long wait and no solution to your issues, whether it's the internet not working or trying to book a reservation. The guest services lines were pretty much always long too. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
unexpectedly wonderful cruise experience from embarkation to coming back in nyc. we set sail and saw Statue of Liberty & passing under Verrazano bridge, onboard food & drink was just unlimited plus choices, we did 2 specialty resto ... Read More
unexpectedly wonderful cruise experience from embarkation to coming back in nyc. we set sail and saw Statue of Liberty & passing under Verrazano bridge, onboard food & drink was just unlimited plus choices, we did 2 specialty resto Wonderland & chops grille delicious, thumbs up waiters Juan (Wonderland)& Jay (chops). We hung out by sorrento as they make Fresh pizzas & the coke freestyle machine is nearby as well as cafe promenade with the coffee, cookies & cakes. windjammer buffet is a go to for bfast/lunch/dinner they had whole suckling pig the meat was tender and skin crunchy. What an Experience on bumper cars, ifly, flowrider & northstar on port day in Canaveral. phenomenal dinner service in mdr Chic by John & Elias food was amazing! Shows were ok Spectra, & bcoz of waves only experienced a bit of queen’s We will rock you. Cabin was clean & slept soundly ‘cept for waves day 2 & day 6 or around the Carolinas or Louisiana area. Bahamas had conch fritters & rum cake, swim cabbage beach, Cococay was perfect for swimming, lounging, pool bar party, food was awesome with tasty tacos, Soft serve icecream, no need for tender as it has own dock. Purell everywhere. Rccl anthem staff runs things smoothly, rccl also does awesome in providing support&care to families with kids on the spectrum (autism of the seas) Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Coming in from Toronto, Canada this cruise was a whole new experience. Usually we use the southern Florida ports like Ft. Lauderdale or Miami but we wanted to try something different. It was five of us all together, my wife and I and our 3 ... Read More
Coming in from Toronto, Canada this cruise was a whole new experience. Usually we use the southern Florida ports like Ft. Lauderdale or Miami but we wanted to try something different. It was five of us all together, my wife and I and our 3 adult ages 17-23 daughters. One daughter was on a reading week break from university which made our decision for this cruise. We stayed pre-cruise one night at the Hilton Newark Airport. Nice clean hotel, good service and great little bar area for some Valentines day cocktails and food! The next day we took the shuttle from Unipark services I highly recommend them. No way an Uber XL could have taken all five us with luggage to the port. We also arranged for them to take us from the port to the Airport when we disembarked and that went smoothly was well. Arriving at the cruise port around 11:00 am was smooth hardly any traffic because it was a Sunday. After dropping off our luggage at the porters we headed into the terminal. It was a little chaotic. They were doing a little pre-screening for the coronovirus, basically asking us if we had travelled to China or been in contact with anyone from there and if we were felling unwell. No to all and we were on our way. I think we were on the ship in half and hour total. We headed to the Solarium right away and just relaxed. We had lunch in the Solarium Bistro and that was fine and plentiful. No crowds either. After Lunch we headed to our cabins our key cards were there. We were mid-ship 9580 and 9574 Balcony cabins. Excellent vantage point as we could use the Forward or Aft elevator equally or the stairs most of the time for exercise. The cabins are genius in there design for space. There was no problem for all our clothes and luggage. Our bed was right by the balcony which I liked. Our cabin attendant Dwayne introduced himself and he was excellent. Luggage arrived right after the Mustard Drill and we unpacked and got ready for the sail away under the Verrezano Bridge. Back into our winter gear so unreal to do this and on top of Deck 14 for the sail away. But first a real treat, the Captain was able to get special permission to cruise right by the Statue of Liberty twice! He went by it once and then stopped turned the ship around on a dime in the tight harbour and then went by it again. It was a great experience seeing the Statue of Liberty so close and in the sunset. After this we proceeded to the Verrezano bridge and whooped and hollared as we went underneath it. There were a lot of people on this cruise ship with President's week. It took a while to get used to it but there a lot of spaces to go and explore and do so it wasn't that bad. Unfortunately if you wanted a chair at the Solarium you had to be there at 6:00 am from what I saw. I saw some enforcement from the staff on some chair hogs but not enough from my perspective. But no matter I'm not really a pool person I just looked forward to the warm weather and it did come. The second cruise day was sunny and warm and most people were outside. The ship opened up now. I couldn't complain about the weather all our port days were sunny and warm average 84 degrees. We did the Kayak adventure in port canaveral. That was fun. The Blue Lagoon Stingray experience and Beach day. And of course Perfect day at Coco Cay. All beautiful days sunny and warm. And a few sunburns to go with it! There was a bit of disorganization for the Blue Lagoon excursion but staff were helpful in straightening out our wrist bands for the Blue Lagoon. Entertainment on the ship was second to none. As usual Royal exceeds here. We will rock you, the comics and headliners were all excellent. Not a big fan of Aerosmith but the cover band was ok. Royal Swedes were good as well. It was all good. No complaints there. The dining was excellent I think all our meals were fantastic. The staff and service were all good. I really think this made our trip. We didn't end up doing any specialty restaurants because the dining room was excellent. We didn't do the drink package as my wife and I are not huge drinkers but we did enjoy our cocktails at Bolero's and the Schooner bar as well as the Solarium bar for the most part. Those that did the drink package and you know who you are I don't miss those hangovers! We had so much fun on the bumper cars, iFly and Northstar it was truly amazing to do this at sea. Overall my family had a great time. From singing the Canadian National anthem at Matt Yee's first show OY! to line dancing in the Royal promenade it was a very memorable vacation and we were sad to get off the ship. It was a great time by all! Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
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