1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. Royal Caribbean International
  4. Royal Caribbean International Cruise Reviews

701 Royal Caribbean Port Canaveral (Orlando) Cruise Reviews

Loyal to Royal.. We are Diamonds. I have to give RCCL high marks for their help with people with disabilities. We traveled with our friends with one having MS. The room they had was perfect. RCCL put lots of thought in this room so a ... Read More
Loyal to Royal.. We are Diamonds. I have to give RCCL high marks for their help with people with disabilities. We traveled with our friends with one having MS. The room they had was perfect. RCCL put lots of thought in this room so a physically handicap person had ease in usage especially in the bathroom. I would tell anyone who is in a wheel chair or motorized chair not to hesitate to take a cruise with RCCL. As we were going back aboard in Nassau, the ramp was very steep, but as we started towards the ramp there was a RCCL employee right there to assist him up the ramp. After saying all this I feel compelled to mention a few things that need attention. The group that we traveled with all felt the crew was tired. From the room attendant, the wait staff and bartenders, they all seemed to be overworked and tired. Next on the list of disappointments was the dining room food or should I say the lack of it. The portion size has gotten so small that it is getting to be comical One night most of us ordered chicken parm. My wife had one piece of chicken the size a small chicken tender and mine was the laugh of the table. After we brought this to the head waiters attention, he went to the kitchen and brought back a nice amount of chicken to be shared with us all. The service in the main dining room was slow but we feel it is due to the lack of support staff. The bar service was not what we were used to. Slow, drinks wrong, bills messed up, lack of attention to orders when made. Our room attendant never introduced herself, did the bare minimum for us. She definitely appeared to be the most overworked. We will continue to use RCCL for our cruises, but fell if RCCL continues to make cut backs in the help as well as the food, their reputation may be in jeopardy of being not the cruise line of choice. I understand about profit but when you diminish the service as well as the food you just might start losing customers. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This was our 14th sailing with Royal Caribbean, of which three were on Oasis that we loved. Sadly, even though she's a beautiful ship, all in all, Harmony was a let-down for us in several important areas. The most notable sore ... Read More
This was our 14th sailing with Royal Caribbean, of which three were on Oasis that we loved. Sadly, even though she's a beautiful ship, all in all, Harmony was a let-down for us in several important areas. The most notable sore point of this cruise was our Main Dining Room experience. Even though our waiter, Roque, worked very hard to please, and always wore a great smile, the quality and temperature of the food sabotaged his efforts: The escargot were lukewarm; the onion soup won "worst I've ever had" --- barely warm, totally lacking in taste, and with a huge glob of cheese hanging on desperately to what looked like a drowning slice of whole wheat bread; a tiny Caesar salad drenched in dressing; stuffed mushrooms that were tired and tasteless. Incidentally, we sailed on the Mariner OTS a couple of weeks prior, and my husband commented (and I agreed) that the menu was pretty well the same, with the difference being that the Mariner MDR's food was hot and tasty. After the second evening, we opted to dine in the Windjammer instead. There, the variety, temperature, taste and presentation of the food were substantially better. We being night owls, were also disappointed in the late-night offerings of the Cafe Promenade which are no longer little treats; rather, they've become non-descript and bad enough to choose Sorrento's pizza instead which, by the way, was no treat either. Coffee lovers be warned: With the exception of the Cappuccino in the Diamond Lounge, coffee throughout the ship was tepid and had an odd taste to it. Interestingly, the fun facts about Harmony of the Seas on our Welcome Aboard photo point out that the ship can accommodate 6,780 Guests and 2,175 Crew. I think most of us would agree that those numbers explain the long waits for elevators. We were fortunate to be located mid-ship on Deck 6 which allowed us to take the stairs most times, but we also found ourselves waiting patiently for elevators when walking would have been too difficult. We don't know why, but for some reason we did not receive the invitation to the Cruise Critic Meet 'N Greet and consequently missed it. It seemed strange to us that the Welcome Back get-together on Harmony was held at the Aqua Theatre?! Of course, not all was bad. The comedians Cary Long and Paul Ogata provided side-splitting comedy that still has me laughing. We also really enjoyed "Grease" and the music of Umoja4. As usual, embarkation at Port Canaveral was a breeze (as was disembarkation). Our deluxe veranda stateroom was conveniently located on Deck 6 midship. It had two separate closets and plenty of additional storage space. Our room was well kept by our steward (nicknamed Sam) who was Johnny-on-the-Spot, and his service and attitude were definitely worth the additional tip we left for him. The bump-out balcony was spacious and enjoyable (except for the times our neighbors were out there smoking whatever). Speaking of 'smoke', its smell was very noticeable not only in the Casino, but also in the hallways leading to it. Maybe it's time to enlarge the non-smoking area and reduce the other? Would we sail on Harmony again? Probably not. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
My husband and I have cruised on Halloween before and really enjoyed it so we thought we would give the Harmony a shot. The ship was nice newer than Oasis. We chose a Boardwalk balcony. The bed was as hard as a rock. We did request ... Read More
My husband and I have cruised on Halloween before and really enjoyed it so we thought we would give the Harmony a shot. The ship was nice newer than Oasis. We chose a Boardwalk balcony. The bed was as hard as a rock. We did request additional padding,but that didn’t help. The Abyss slide obstructs you’re view so you are unable to watch any shows from your balcony. The room was very nice and clean and our stateroom attendant Daniel was wonderful. We did enjoy Grease , the ice show , and Columbus the musical. We were very very disappointed at Jamie’s Italian. The food was very salty and not good at all. Don’t know why they removed Giovanni’s. That was a wonderful restaurant. We also ate at 150 Central and that was okay. We found that the food on the Oasis was so much better than Harmony. It seemed like they were short staffed on the Harmony. If you went to Cafe Promenade dirty dishes were left on tables and no one was there to clean them up. The Windjammer food was okay. It seemed like the Oasis Windjammer was larger than Harmony’s. The dessert presentation was poor. Mousse , mousse and more mousse. They did have a chocolate buffet one night and nice cakes the last night but the other nights were awful. The Oasis has the Harmony beat in the Windjammer for sure. Service was okay. Oasis also had better service. We did have an excellent stateroom attendant. The Halloween parade was good but lacked in decorations. No balloons falling from the ceiling like on Oasis last year. Coco Cay was wonderful. The food on the island was excellent. You need to see all the great work they have done. St Thomas is horrible. If you go downtown there is nothing worth going down there for. You can take a taxi from the port to the beaches or a tour. That would be your best bet. Love San Juan. You need to walk up to El Morro it is such a beautiful site to see. We walked back down thru the streets of old San Juan and stopped In some of the shops there. Overall I would prefer the Oasis. The Harmony needs to hire more help and make it a bit more friendlier. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Embarkation - easy and quick. The cost of parking at Port Canaveral has gone up significantly - now $85 Monday to Friday. Food - distinctly average in the MDR on my time dining. Dinner took 2 hours every night. 30 minute wait before ... Read More
Embarkation - easy and quick. The cost of parking at Port Canaveral has gone up significantly - now $85 Monday to Friday. Food - distinctly average in the MDR on my time dining. Dinner took 2 hours every night. 30 minute wait before ordering. We were a large party but it just took too long. Food was average to good but absolutely none of it was hot. It also took ages to get drinks and we rarely got the drink we had ordered. Breakfast buffet in the MDR was freezing cold. A la Carte breakfast in MDR was good. Windjammer - breakfast was the worst I’ve ever seen - cold, sloppy and disgusting, we went once then ate in the Diamond club. No choice, all cold and poor quality. Lunch was good and we went once for dinner, which was also good. Cafe promenade - we went for pizza after dinner and had to wait for 20 minutes as there was no pizza available. When the pizza was finally cooked and served, it became the only free hot meal I enjoyed throughout the cruise. There was always a queue for pizza every time we walked past, sometimes snaking down the promenade and the service was very slow. Izumi - we went for Teppanyaki for lunch. Was expensive at $40 each but fantastic experience and fabulous food - we all had the premium options so enjoyed beef tenderloin, scallops and lobster. Our chef, Jeffrey, was very entertaining and we enjoyed the experience very much. I also enjoyed some fabulous sake cocktails on the drinks package which were different and supplemented the experience. If you have not experienced Teppanyaki before, I would highly recommend trying this. Lunch is $10 cheaper than dinner and you get exactly the same food and experience. We also had just two other ladies at our Teppan so it was an almost private experience at lunchtime. Drinks - I had the deluxe package which was pre-booked before the cruise. I also had the benefit of Diamond drinks in the evening but I like cocktails and different wines to those on offer. Individually priced drinks are absolutely extortionate - $12-$15 plus an 18% gratuity is just ridiculous. If you like to drink, even if it is just a few cocktails/glasses of wine per day, the cost means you may as well go all out and get the deluxe package. Cococay - this was our first visit to the “new” island; we had been a number of times to the original island. RCL has done a great job, we had a wonderful day. The upgraded food and drink offerings were fab and we enjoyed both the sea and the huge free pool. Unless you want to go on the big water slides, there is absolutely no need to pay anything extra at Cococay; there is an abundance of seating (based on one ship being docked rather than two) and plenty of activities. Floating mats cost $18 each - we took our own inflatables to float in th sea instead. Nassau - this being my 14th visit to Nassau, I have pretty much run out of things to do here. We went to Cabbage Beach on Paradise Island and took the water taxi, which was a big mistake. We had to walk for 30 minutes from the water taxi drop off to get to the public beach access. Regular taxis were charging the same price ($4 per person) and dropped off right outside the beach access route. If you’re going to the beach, take a regular taxi. We paid $40 for 3 chairs and an umbrella. The beach was lovely but the sea was very rough. It is a public beach so it was busy, people were playing music and smoking, and hawkers pestered us literally every 2 minutes we were there. We still had a great time but if you want a private and peaceful beach experience, avoid Cabbage Beach. Around the ship - there was nowhere quiet on this ship. Everywhere we went was incredibly loud. This was my 3rd sailing on Mariner and first after her refurbishment. She is a beautiful ship; it’s a shame she has been put on this party itinerary. Cabin 7579 promenade view - clean enough but very tight to get past the beds into the cabin, luggage had to go over the bed. It was nice to look into the promenade. There was a service station a few doors down where crew took what looked to be used crockery/glasses from room service. Until around midnight each night there was clattering and clunking from plates, glasses and cutlery - very noisy but not from the promenade. Adventure Ocean - my 3 year old niece had a great time at Aquanauts and couldn’t wait to go back each day. This is a party cruise and very much like a floating holiday camp - the quality of food and service is not up to RCL’s usual standards. We still had a good time but won’t be taking this cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was our first cruise as a couple after 20 years or so cruising with family. We took our first RCCL cruise back in 1997 and have taken around 25 cruises in that time, around half of them with RCCL. It is sad to see how far this line is ... Read More
This was our first cruise as a couple after 20 years or so cruising with family. We took our first RCCL cruise back in 1997 and have taken around 25 cruises in that time, around half of them with RCCL. It is sad to see how far this line is prepared to go, to erode the cruise experience totally. I'm sure those relatively new to cruising won’t know any different and so don’t know what they missed. First the good. The ship is a physical masterpiece and a tremendous feat of engineering (I work in the ship building business). Despite its size it was very crowded. Embarking and leaving the ship was exceptional with both taking less than 10 minutes. Airports could learn a thing or two here. The not so good. We had a boardwalk balcony (since all sea view balconies had sold when we booked). The balcony was fine, but we would not choose this type again for a couple of reasons. First, there is little privacy and secondly, there is a lot of noise. In our room, the air conditioning was not working and only really got sorted at the end of day 2. For interest, there were quite a few portable conditioners around the ship so perhaps ours was not an isolated incident. We had “my time” dining using the American Icon dining room. It might as well have been called “no time” dining, since there were no times available to book! On the first night, we queued for 30 minutes and once we were allocated a table, waited another 30 minutes to have our existence acknowledged. The food was bland and cold when finally delivered. We checked the menu for the rest of the week to see that it barely changed day-to-day. Under duress we purchased a dining package ($600+]. Here is where we feel RCCL have changed for the worst; the “extra-fee” restaurants are rather good, but basically offer no more than what used to be offered in the main dining room only a few years ago for no more than the cruise fare. We find it ironic that the line describe the eateries (main dining rooms, windjammer etc) as free dining....hmm, I think we have already spent a few $000’s of dollars for the pleasure! Unfortunately, eating in the main dining rooms, is no longer an “event”...unless you think a trip to Denny’s is an event. No disrespect to Denny’s as in fact we had a better meal on our way home there! Whilst we purchased the dining package, it didn’t stop the constant hard sell to buy it (for the first 4 days of the cruise), or to buy a beverage package, spa treatments or to buy a $35 kitchen tour etc. The whole constant up sell is tiresome and intimidating. Just another note, getting anything to eat after 9:00 PM is limited to pizza as even the windjammer is closed by then. Whilst having dinner in the main dining room on the first night, we noticed that the imminent Grease show had been cancelled and moved to day 7. (Coinciding with our dinner reservation on that day). On the second night, the Aqua show was cancelled, then on the fourth night, the skating show suffered the same fate. Ultimately all of the shows were squeezed into the last day. Grease was very good, as was 1887. The headliner show was an acquired taste (not ours) and Columbus we felt was rather poor. Unfortunately due to constant rescheduling we couldn’t see many of the other events as they were showing simultaneously. I’m not sure we will choose RCCL again simply because you can get an identical experience for much less money on lines like Costa and MSC, where the price paid = expectations. RCCL still charge premium prices for an ordinary experience and then have turned the up-sell into the reason for you to be onboard. They are prepared to spoil the experience to chase the last dollar. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was our 9th cruise on Royal; and if it had been our first, there wouldn't have been a second. Embarkation was fast and efficient. Unfortunately that was the highlight of the cruise. Didn't care for the fact that there is ... Read More
This was our 9th cruise on Royal; and if it had been our first, there wouldn't have been a second. Embarkation was fast and efficient. Unfortunately that was the highlight of the cruise. Didn't care for the fact that there is no pool in the solarium. Boring shows, except for headliner Tony Tillman, complimented boring breakfast, lunch and dinners in the MDR. Why is the nearest bar to the MDR 2 floors away? It seemed odd that the piano player at the Schooner Bar used a bass and drum backing track to accompany him. At least he didn't have a backing choir track. Terribly crowded elevators, but we always used the stairs. More trinkets than usual for sale in the promenade. The guacamole making class at Sabors was a disappointment; but it was a nice lunch. Always found a chair on the pool deck; that was a nice surprise. The classical guitarist in Central Park was quite good as well as the traveling piano player. Janice in housekeeping, Suparlan and Bohari in the dining room were all superior. So was the rhum tour at Topper's in St. Maarten! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Harmony. Cruise Sept 8,15-2019- Survey. * This was our 3rd sailing on Harmony, my wife & I have also been on the Oasis and the Allure several times, we are at the Diamond level.. We went on the Harmony again on May 3, 2020. My ... Read More
Harmony. Cruise Sept 8,15-2019- Survey. * This was our 3rd sailing on Harmony, my wife & I have also been on the Oasis and the Allure several times, we are at the Diamond level.. We went on the Harmony again on May 3, 2020. My overall review on the Harmony.... * Coco Cay experience was Great!!! Beautiful island!!! Perfect Day at CocoCay.. * The Royal Caribbean staff overall on the ship seems very happy which in turn gives good service, from taking care of our room to the restaurants service. * For what ever reason the Beds are still very uncomfortable in our room. We have taken Royal Caribbean many times and this time the beds were not that comfortable. * My wife and I thought that the Entertainment was not up to par compared to the last time we were on the Harmony. Had no problem with the Entertainment on the Oasis and the Allure and the last time we were on the Harmony was very good and we have been on these ships many times before. The water show which was always very good wasn’t very good this cruise. Heard other people saying the same thing... * It seems as the wi-fi was not as good on the Harmony this time compared to other Royal Caribbean ships. This time it kept freezing up and was very slow. * Many times the elevators were not enough to handle the people on the cruise, had to wait a long time to use elevators. * Item of great concern to us was the designated Smoking Area by the pool area should be moved to another floor/level or another part of ship... It’s a shame that the Smoking Area has to be by the pool on the 15 Floor where Kids & Adults have to walk through this area and subjected to the smoke from the cigarettes/pipes & cigars, the smell is just horrible. Need to move to another area..... away from the pool area. * Lobster night was great and our waiters in the dining room were excellent and our room attendant did a great job with our room.... * Very disappointed with the Diamond Club on the Harmony, very small room compared to the Oasis & the Allure. The Diamond Room on the Harmony is about half the size of Diamond Rooms on the Oasis & Allure. The Diamond Rooms on the Oasis & Allure Have two levels/floors, the Harmony only has one level/floor. Also, very disappointed with the Casino regarding table games. On the Harmony Casino you don’t have a game named “Let It Ride”. There were at least 3 or 4 tables in the Casino that had dealers just standing there with no players at their tables. I have been on the Oasis & the Allure and they have the table game “Let It Ride”, it was very popular there. They should get “Let It Ride” card game on the Harmony. * Starbucks that’s normally on the Fifth Floor/Level like the Oasis & Allure was moved to Boardwalk on the Harmony, in my opinion this was a bad move.... It should be put back on the Fifth Floor/ Level.... There are some problems with the Solarium, there’s no pool as there is on the Oasis & Allure and there seemed to be a lot of kids in the Solarium very young age when there is a sign that states no children under the age of 16. Who is suppose to enforce this. **Even though we had some concerns as stated above we had a wonderful time on Harmony the week of, Sept. 8-15, 2019.. Harmony ship is amazing!! My wife and I are both Diamond Members..... Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
The vacation turned out very well. We went to beautiful ports, had excellent waitstaff, and a beautiful room. But the Harmony of the Seas was too big, crowded, and very poorly managed. This was my 2nd cruise on Harmony of the Seas out ... Read More
The vacation turned out very well. We went to beautiful ports, had excellent waitstaff, and a beautiful room. But the Harmony of the Seas was too big, crowded, and very poorly managed. This was my 2nd cruise on Harmony of the Seas out of Port Canaveral and my observations for both cruises are the same. My studio cabin 4678 was beautiful. It had everything found in a standard cabin, just much smaller. The window was about 5 feet around, and I really enjoyed this small room at its much smaller price. The ship looks beautiful. Nice color scheme, very pretty. Very clean. The wait staff, cabin steward and Guest Services were top notch, The Western Carib ports were my favorites and we had a wonderful time. But I'll NEVER again take such a big ship and because of how mismanaged this ship was, I'll avoid Harmony of the Seas. There were two stacks of elevators, 24 elevators total. It mustr have sounded like a lot when they designed the ship, but in practical use, it was a huge failure. Wait times for the elevators and the crowding inside them was inexcusable. It could take 20 minutes to wait for the elevator. The dining room was packed crowded. Tables were so close the chairs touched each other. There was no room to walk to the seat. No room to pull back the chair to pick up a dropped napkin. We had reservations for dinner at the same time each night with the same waitstaff. Not oly did we always have to wait, but they always tried to move us to a different waiter. They were never ready for us and it was always a problem. The noise level was unbearable for me. Much of the activity, snacks, bars, etc was in the Promenade. With the parades and parties, this area was packed and the noise level was too much. After dining hours, the only available coffee was at the pay coffee shop. There was no place to get a cup of coffee and a cookie. The Soda Package soda machines were very limited and the one in the Windjammer was unavailable after meal times. Lines for these machines could be very long. Yes, I had a great vacation. But I have had better cruise experiences on other ships and cruise lines. Harmony of the Seas was too big, crowded, and crazy for my tastes. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We chose this cruise because we thought the eastern itinerrary would be amazing, sadly we were sent to costa mesa (basically ghetto mexican port) and cozumel who anyone who cruises sometimes do not even get off at... and of course the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we thought the eastern itinerrary would be amazing, sadly we were sent to costa mesa (basically ghetto mexican port) and cozumel who anyone who cruises sometimes do not even get off at... and of course the perfect day at coco cay, which isn't so perfect honestly. Let's start out with the good. The ship has so much to do and see, for all walks of life. We found the golf area at night fun, there is lots to do for anyone. Our cabin was spacious and always clean, so no issues there. Let's talk about dining. Windjammer .... Same food for breakfast every morning, i mean what can they do? You name it, they have it.. Except peanut butter? weird. Ever notice how hard it is to find blackberries on a cruise ship? No complaints about selections at the windjammer, they always have the basics, except for the last 2 days of the cruise.... they mixed their own yogurts, and only put plain yogurts out... then miraculously the last day when the new people were to board.... they found other flavors again in prepackaged. The freestyle soda fountain is HORRIBLE.... It either never has ice... or the soda is unavailable.... It took 3 days till deck 15's coke zero would work.... and then other times it was offline. In the windjammer on several occasions coke zero was unavailable. up on 15 the outdoor eating area,,, had trash left HOURS after they closed, fries on the ground etc... It was just gross. Only happened one night i saw. Service was overall mediocre with some of course usual very good service members. Overall friendliness was around a 6 out of 10. The elevators is ATROCIOUS, everyone was using stairs because of how bad the elevator situation is... Luckily we were on 14, so going up to 15 and 16 was quick and easy, but on several occasions it was difficult to get down to boardwalk or promenade or even central park because we waited 5-10 mins for an elevator. Just not ok. Towel animals for the kiddos, were 3 out of 7 days. Our room steward made sure we had ice as requested every night, which was great. Main dining service was great, they got some stuff wrong, but were overall friendly and attentive. However, i am not sure what changed.... but the menus are the same every night but maybe 1 app/main/desert changes... So much for nightly unique menus.... Seems to eat well on this ship , as in the best quality food, you have to pay...We used our vouchers for jamies.... which was very good, and by far the best meal we had, service by josh 1? i forget, was good, but it just took too long, with a 3 year old, eating for 90 mins is just too long. We were asked if we had a show, we should of said yes. This is my tip, say you do, whether you do or don't.... they worked fast, but seemed under staffed... By far the busiest of all restaurants.. Johhny rockets was decent, they bring you lots of sides before the burgers come, for the price it's worth it. Embarking was a breeze, and a 9-930 debark.... was A BREEZE.. literally we were in the garage 5-10 mins after we exited the ship. I've never seen anything like it. THANK GOD, no more picking up bags before customs... whoever made this change, deserves a raise, sadly 3 months ago at canaveral on disney... it was still the old way. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We wanted a short cheaper cruise for our Anniversary. We had some gift cards from work to apply to RC to bring the cost down. We had to call RC multiple times and took a month and after our cruise for the cards to be applied. The booking ... Read More
We wanted a short cheaper cruise for our Anniversary. We had some gift cards from work to apply to RC to bring the cost down. We had to call RC multiple times and took a month and after our cruise for the cards to be applied. The booking agent with RC was not the most helpful to work with and was at times rude. We had it noted in our booking it was our Anniversary the day we left yet no one from RC from the cabin steward to the dining room staff said Happy Anniversary until my husband went to the head waiter and told him. We didn't expect any gift or items but a verbal acknowledgement would have been nice since the phone customer support had it in the file when they asked after we had all the trouble with the gift cards being applied if we would like to purchase a bottle of champagne for our anniversary. The main entree food in the MDR was good overall with the exception of the fish which was overcooked and dry. The desserts were underwhelming as we have had much better on other cruise lines. The two best are the chocolate cake they have every night and the grand mariner souffle. We wanted to try the sky pad, lazer tag, ice skating, rock wall and flow rider. The sky pad we heard from another guest was going to be shut down by 5:30 the first day and not open the remainder of the cruise even though the itinerary said it would be open each day on their app. Sure enough it was closed for maintenance but didn't reflect that in their app. The lazer tag also had more times posted in the app than it was really open for so we were unable to try that. The Ice skating was pretty cool but also had limited availability and was fun to try. The ice show was great the best show we saw on the ship by ship staff. It was obvious they were stalling the first night for the comedy show but wouldn't announce that when the comedian didn't come on until 40 min into an hour scheduled show. The flow rider was fun but you could only go a minute or two per turn before waiting a half hour in line again. We liked that the ship never felt crowded or had trouble getting from one end to the other. The promenade was nice and the coffee drink cards well worth it. Other activities were on par with other ships. The comedian and ventriloquist were enjoyable. Overall we would cruise RC again if the price is right but to us it isn't worth the higher price when activities are unavailable more than half the cruise and the food is the same or other lines better. We did not try the specialty restaurants maybe the food is better there for the additional cost. The cabin was clean but smaller than ones we've had in the past but worked for us for a 4 day cruise. The only other negative was the $170 in extra credit card charges in addition to the end of cruise room statement we found on our credit card a few days after arriving home that RC says is credit card validation to ensure it's a valid card. Not sure I believe that they need to charge 5 charges ranging from $9-75 to validate a card. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Harmony of the Seas 9/15-22 Review Overview: I will start off by saying that this is going to be a very, very long review (better go get a cup of tea if you actually read through all of this). The poor weather gave me a lot of time to ... Read More
Harmony of the Seas 9/15-22 Review Overview: I will start off by saying that this is going to be a very, very long review (better go get a cup of tea if you actually read through all of this). The poor weather gave me a lot of time to sit around and type. This is my 7th cruise in total and 4th cruise with Royal Caribbean. This is my third Oasis-class ship. Our group is a party of three adults. While we enjoyed this cruise a lot, I personally feel that the service on the Allure was better than on the Harmony. Despite being a newer ship than the Allure, we also felt that it was not maintained as well as the Allure too. One morning in the Windjammer, there was a large amount of ants accumulating by the window, which we promptly told a worker about to hopefully clean up. We noticed the dining area is a lot more creakier. They must have made some budget cuts to both the complimentary and pay for dining options, as the buffet menus were quite repetitive and menus posted on the RCCL website for pay-for dining places were not the same as in the restaurants. I think it is tough being one of the most popular--if not the most popular, cruise ship on the seas, which is shown by how much wear and tear is showing. Still the stars of the cruise as usual is the support staff on the boats, who do everything they can to make sure you are having a good experience. I noticed that they had a separate line for Key purchasers for getting on board and getting off the ship, but it did not seem to make much difference to me, as people were still getting on/off at the same time they were. We were on the boat by 11AM and had no issue with reserving restaurants and setting things up. I guess it would matter if you come really early, or want an escort to help you carry things? Weather: Now by no fault of the cruiseline, we experienced quite a turbulent ride for a large part of the cruise. When we left Port Canaveral, it was definitely rocky, but the ride back home was even worse. Whatever storm system (I know TS Jerry is not too far behind us) was present, it seemed to have taken a liking to Harmony and it followed us home. The boats constant rocking back and forth was so intense, people were flung around all over the place. Some people mentioned that this movement was worse than experiences in Alaska. You can hear to howling of the wind, and the rain was heavy and constant throughout the two sea days. They closed the pools for a large part of Sea Day number 2 because the pool ended up being some crazy wave pool, but the hot tubs were open if you did not mind sitting in the tub with rain pouring down on you. The weather also caused the internet to drop throughout the day as well. I was hoping by the last day on the ship the weather would be better, but unfortunately, it continued to be rocky until we reached the shallower waters closer to Florida. I think this impacted people's ability to come out of their rooms because for the most part, the public spaces appeared to be fairly empty. The pool deck was a ghost town with the exception of the smoking area. The CD mentioned that there were swells up to 15 feet. Bad weather also makes a mega ship lose its magic, as shows, activities, and public areas were cancelled or closed. I'm sure the cruiseline was thrilled for cancelling shows and activities, as more people seemed to spend money gambling, shopping, and drinking on board. While bad weather can come at any time of year, I would say take this into consideration if you do choose to travel during hurricane season. Also, if you have a chance to catch a show, go on a water slide, down the Abyss, or ride on the FlowRider earlier in the week, do it then because you may not have a chance on the latter half! Pre-Cruise: This cruise was booked at the last minute (less than 2 months prior to the cruise), so I had to do a lot of last minute planning without doing the thorough review check prior to the cruise. I had been watching the spaghetti models during the week prior to the cruise, as Humberto was lingering close by Florida, but thankfully he choose to boomerang back into the ocean, and we were able to land in Orlando on time. For flying, we took JetBlue to Orlando Airport. The JetBlue terminal was not connected to the main terminal area, so for those who are coming through JetBlue, prepare to take a short tram ride to the main terminal in order to get to baggage claim--as non-primary English speakers, my parents told me that they would feel nervous if they were travelling alone, as they would not feel confident going around the airport in this manner, but I felt the tram system was very straight forward. I had compared pricing between paying for a LYFT/Uber for 3 people to get to Port Canaveral vs transport services, and in the end we decided to go with GoPort. They have various packages posted on their website to choose from with a whole range of pricing. We are not picky people and are always looking for a good deal, thus we looked for more of a budget hotel. We at first were thinking of choosing a hotel by Port Canaveral, but I noticed the GoPort site had hotels by the airport instead. Each hotel has different designated pick up times when they leave for the cruise port. We wanted a hotel that would allow for us to get to the cruiseport fairly early, thus we chose the Holiday Inn Orlando Airport. The customer service for GoPort were super friendly and helpful, and they allowed up to 3 days to cancel/change without incurring a penalty. The Fly Snooze Cruise package for three adults ended up being about 230 bucks which includes pick up from the airport to the hotel (this is scheduled by you calling your hotel after you get your luggage and going to the designated pick up locations), two queen beds at the hotel, and round-trip transportation to and from the Port Canaveral cruiseport. The hotel itself looked recently refurbished, but some parts of it seemed to be a bit dated. The air conditioner was a bit loud and not as cool as we would want it to be, and the television's screen was all messed up. They had a mini fridge in the room. Unfortunately, there is no included continental breakfast at the hotel, but they do have a restaurant plus a cafe there (and a small snack shop). I ordered the breakfast sliders from the cafe (where it was about 10 bucks and tax), and it was easily sharable for 2 (we shared it amongst all 3 of us because we only wanted a light breakfast) people. Although the pick up time is set for 9:45AM at this hotel by GoPort, it is recommended that you show up at 9:30AM per the hotel staff. However, even showing up at 9:30AM, we were the last ones getting onto the bus. The commute time was about 45 minutes to Port Canaveral from the hotel, and it was an easy ride given it was a straight shot to the terminal without traffic. Once you get to the cruise port, the GoPort workers leave out everyone's luggage to grab any last minute things, and then a porter is already standing there and tells you to leave your luggage. Now when we were heading to the Allure last year at Port Everglades, we had encountered a pushy porter who was demanding tips from people (trying to say that if you didn't tip him, you shouldn't expect your luggage to show up to your room), but Port Canaveral has signs all over that tipping is not mandatory and should be based on service. I am always happy to tip people who are kind and hardworking. This was the fastest check in/embarkation line we had ever experienced. I guess the initial groups had already gone in, thus it was a direct walk straight onto the boat after a brief check in and security point check. The security lady we had spoken to was claiming that anyone who had beverages were supposed to dump it, but we had a couple bottles of soda/water, and it went through without issue (other people had entire cases of soda and got through fine as well, but some poor guy behind us was trying to chug his overpriced water and chucked the rest). As a side note, we had some time to kill once we had landed in Orlando, and after checking in, we decided to take a LYFT to Boston Lobster Feast over on International Drive. The ride from the hotel to the restaurant was 17.50. BLF is an AYCE seafood restaurant, and they have two locations. Early bird pricing if you come in before 6PM is 50 dollary doos while after 6PM is 5 dollars more. Early bird time was a good time to go, as while the restaurant had a lot of people, lines were quick. What is included in things like lobster (one at a time, but they always had a huge pile and it was easy to get as many as you wanted), snow crab legs, Cajun seasoned blue crab (the best thingy they had IMO), steamers, assortment of fried seafood, selection of cold seafood like raw oysters, etc. My parents were skeptical at first, but they were very happy we ended up going there. After we finished eating at the restaurant, we took a LYFT to Disney Springs, which costed 12.59. I have to say, for people who are not familiar with the area, the entrance way for ride-sharing companies like LYFT/Uber was confusing as heck! Our poor driver (who did not speak much English) was having a hard time finding the entrance, thus I just told him to drop us off at a nearby parking lot and that we would walk the rest of the way. The ride back was also a nightmare, as it let us choose a spot we were standing at, but then later without warning mentioned that we had to go elsewhere to a designated pick up spot for LYFT/Uber riders. Thankfully our rider was super sweet and would have waited even if we didn't make it in the 5 minute waiting time limit, but we put our cardio skills to the test and made it with seconds to spare. I do not think someone who was not physically well could have made it across Disney Springs in time, especially because of the lack of signage and crowds). Disney Springs was a nice place to just do a casual shop and stroll, but all of the Disney folks and kiddies were also thinking the same thing. Thankfully I purchased a bottle of water and soda at the mart by Boston Lobster Feast, as one bottle of soda/water at Disney Springs costed over 4 dollary doos--yikes. Our LYFT ride back to the hotel was 23.23 plus a very generous tip for our kind driver. Cabin: Normally, we try to book a Boardwalk balcony cabin because we enjoy the perks that come with the room, but there were none left by the time we tried to book the areas we would like, thus we went with a Central Park balcony for the first time. I was a bit hesitant in choosing a CP balcony, as my experience in the past has been always that the CP area does not have good air circulation and is fairly hot because of it. It was not as bad (we are on the 12th floor). It was also quieter than the BBs as well, as we do not have to listen to the late night water shows. You can hear people on the pool deck (the people who tend to be the loudest are those who are going on the water slides and screaming their heads off), and at night you can hear musicians playing things like Jazz, but the locks on the balcony blocked out most of the noise and never interfered with our sleep. As for the cabin itself, I very much like how they redesigned the cabin spaces compared to the Oasis/Allure. It just seemed like there was more space, and less bumping into things. Instead of the fold out couch taking for a huge space, they redesigned the couch bed to be more of an extra long twin style. It was comfy for me, but the blanket for the couch was a bit small (only the width of the bed) and the sheet cover kept falling off the blanket, so at times I would wake up at night exposed to the cold. It was nice having two closets and two sets of drawers. The mini fridge also seemed slightly bigger. As for plugs and ports, there is two USB ports directly into the wall (which I found to be a slow charger for my cellphone), and three regular ports by the desk, and then more plugs by the bed. It used to be a big deal having multiport plugs in your room, but all we really needed was one of those multi USB ports on this ship. Rug had stains and looked worn. I think RCCL has stopped changing bedsheets daily for quite some time now. Towel animals were presented in our cabin about three times during the week. Since this is a CP balcony, we had the Eat Drink Discover perks attached to the room, but since we already ordered the unlimited dining package, we did not use the free lunch for two (which you can choose between Jamie’s, Sabor, or Johnny Rockets). The room came with a bottle of wine, in which we do not drink. I called CS to see if this could be exchanged to anything else, but unfortunately it cannot, so we decided to just bring this home for my sister. Our booking agent also threw in a bottle of wine, thus we had two bottles of wine waiting for us (I was curious and looked up the wines online, and they are priced at $8.50 per bottle). I would like to note that RCCL did put out a notice that they are going to be ending the Eat Drink Discover perks in the future. The bathroom layout is similar to the Allure/Oasis, but the sink is slightly bigger, so it is less messy splashing when washing your face. They continue to be lacking in the cold water department. The soap/shampoo continues to be a bar of soap and the "2 in 1" shampoo/body wash in the wall dispenser. The shower was a bit inconvenient when you are getting out, as it is not the slide door they had on Allure but a door that automatically tries to shut itself when you open it (I would push the floor towel to block it from closing when drying). Hair dryer is in the drawers by the mini fridge and tissues. In order to conserve energy, the Harmony requires you to put your card key into the slot by the door in order to keep electricity going through the room or else it times off. While our room was nice, the halls of the cabins was another story. After we finished lunch at Jamie's, we walked back to the room...and oh goodness. It was the strongest smell of sewage ever that reeked up and down the halls around our stateroom. Everyone who was walking around the halls were all complaining, disgusted, and gagging from the rotten smell which seemingly no one was handling. Finally, it seemed that enough people called and complained about the sewage smell, and someone from maintenance came by. It seems that they tried to wash the carpets or something, but this only made it worse. Going forward, it just smelled of moldy mildew and sewage. I am very sensitive to smell, so it was unbearable to even try to walk to the room (thankfully our room did not smell). Once again, it seems that no one was doing anything about the smell that was leaving an entire hall of guests feeling grossed out. I jumped into the long line at customer service, and I brought it up again, frustrated that it is 8 hours later and it still smelled of sewage and mildew. The CS rep looked more annoyed than helpful, but she called the maintenance person, where they said an "accident" happened and that they will not be able to do anything until the next day, where they would again try to wash the carpets and dry them. I asked if they could spray something at least to make the smell less, which again the girl looked annoyed as heck and buzzed back to the guy to do something. Unfortunately, nothing was done, and the hall from like rooms 12250 through 12175 had to endure the horrible smell. Frustrated by the lack of interventions, I tweeted a word of complaint directly at RCCL, and they responded back to me in less than 5 minutes, asking me for the deets (social media speaks louder I guess). They told me based on the info, there was nothing they could do. However, the next day, they did shampoo the carpets again, which took away a lot of the smell (it still smells like mold by rooms 12250), and they also sprayed some pleasant fruit smell to try to mask what they could. I also received a follow up call from maintenance asking if I felt that the issue was resolved, which was nice. Our room attendant was very kind and always happy to open the door for us if our hands were full of stuff. If you bring mugs/drinks back into the room, remember to leave it outside of the room, as the stewards will not take it away otherwise. On Night 5, we had an issue with our toilet in that it would not stop flushing and filling with water. I was standing in the bathroom and brushing my teeth, and I noticed the toilet water was getting really high, in which it promptly continued to fill until it overflowed. Thankfully, flushing the water down the drain prevented it from overflow, thus I left my father on flush duty while I called maintenance (though I felt bad the neighbors were stuck hearing the toilet vortex flush every 15 seconds), which took about 10 minutes for someone to actually show up. It was fixed in about 10 minutes, where a cleaner came promptly after to wipe up any mess. On Night 6 and 7 because it was windy and stormy, we noticed that the balcony door was letting air in from outside, causing a high pitched sound throughout the day/night, but thankfully we are deep sleepers and it did not keep us up (I also sleep with earplugs, which helped). A few days into the cruise, they do add a Laundry offer into the Compass, where it is Wash and Fold Laundry Service—1 bag for 34.99, in which they state they will wash things like pajamas, socks, underwear, shorts, swimwear, and t-shirts. The notice also came with the Luggage Valet offer to pay the cruiseline to send your luggage directly to the airport for a fee ($25 plus the airline fee for baggage check-in). Internet: We ordered the 2 Surf + Stream package, where the pricing did drop to about 21 dollars for 2 lines, which was not as low as the internet package deal I saw on Allure last year, but still not bad. I noticed that the login method has changed since I had been on the Allure last year, where they have you log into the Harmony Guest WiFi and create an account. You need to put in information like your name and year of birth, and then you make a username and pin number for your password. I had issues with creating an account, but thankfully on the first day on the ship, they had a bunch of people standing in the promenade area in green shirts helping people with set up. Lo and behold, they put in my first name wrong, so that was the reason why I couldn't get in on the first time, but it only took about 5 minutes to resolve my issue. I have done some speed tests, and the download speed usually ran around 6 mbps during the days, and around 1.5 mbps at night time. I was able to stream videos and music on my phone without much issues. I was able to FaceTime with my sister while we were at CocoCay with only a couple brief hiccups (if you have an internet package, you can use it on CocoCay). As a note, there is no cellphone tower on CocoCay, so there will be reception (I tried to use Verizon roaming and saw it said: No Service even when roaming was turned on). The upload speed is a different story. No matter what time of day it is, the upload speed was slow. Whenever I tried to send a picture to my family, it would take about 5 minutes per image (each picture was ballpark 1.8 mb). FYI on Day 5, the Cruise Compass had a deal where you can purchase 1 SURF + STREAM package for 1 device for 50 bucks...not quite sure how much of a deal that really is, but is an option for those who did not want to pre-purchase. Dining: This section will be quite extensive, as we had the unlimited dining package. I would like to start off by saying that to us, the package was an amazing deal (we purchased it at a discount price of 175, which is not the lowest it goes, but still reasonable). At the same time, I feel that the package made eating sometimes almost an obligation more than an enjoyment, and at times I felt we would over eat more than what we would do if we didn't have it. I think we would have been much happier with the 3-night dining package instead of the unlimited, but it gave us the chance to try every specialty restaurant at least once to be able to plan for our future cruises. The UDP allows for you to eat at as many restaurants you want for dinner and also lets you eat lunch on embarkation day and sea days. On the Allure, we had to run up to a specialty restaurant to make reservations, but on Harmony, there were two stations in the promenade right upon entering that allows for you to set up your dining schedule there. As I am a planner, I already came with a list of restaurants and times that we would want to eat at. We were unable to get a reservation to 150 CP for Day 1 (unless we wanted to eat at 8:30PM), thus we had to switch up the schedule a bit. Since we are early eaters, getting a 5:30PM reservation was not a problem at all on any other day. As a note, Chops is a very popular restaurant--we tried to change the date around, but we were told that Chops was booked for all early dining times for the rest of the cruise unless we wanted to eat at 8:30PM or later. Now I know there has been some debate and talk about the UDP and whether or not people can order multiple entrees during a single dining session, but honestly, the amount of food you get is already so much, I could not imagine eating more than one entree. To summarize, here is the dining specialty dining venues I personally would rank (excluding Johnny Rockets) from best to worst:1) Jamie's (great for both lunch and dinner) 2) Chops (Lunch options too few imo) 3) Sabor (food great, but it is too hot at lunch) 4) Wonderland (weirdness aside) 5) 150 Central Park (too monotone for flavors between apps and entrees 6) Izumi (Asian food that didn't taste like Asian food). Make sure you plan out your specialty dining ahead of time and how long it takes to go through a meal. Lunch was 60-90 minutes long. Dinner was typically 2 hours, though Wonderland was over 2 hours. If you are tight on time, the waiters were happy to accommodate, which shrunk our dinner time to like 75 minutes. Okay, now the verbose section about what we ordered and what I thought! After setting up our dining schedule, we went up to Jamie's Italian to make a lunch reservation right for 12PM when they opened. The lunch menu was a limited menu in comparison to the dinner menu, but still had a good amount of choices. We went all in and ordered a heck of a lot of apps including the famous meat plank, crispy squid, black truffle arancini, garlicky prawns, and ultimate garlic bread. The meat plank came out first, and this of course if the post-it-up-on-social-media-for-the-oohs-and-ahhs choice. The meat plank wow'd us so much that I forgot to take pictures of the rest of the appetizers like I normally would. Our favorite apps were the crispy squid and the garlic bread. The black truffle arancini was also very delicious, but a bit too heavy, and the garlicky prawns were overcooked and hard to pull off the shell. For the entrees, my dad and I both ordered the JI burger and my mother just ordered an entree sized portion of the famous prawn linguine. My dad also had ordered a side of seasonal greens and I the arugula and parmesan salad, but both items were both forgotten about and not brought (which ended up being okay because we were stuffed). The burger was delicious, as the hamburger meat was actually ground up tenderloin with the right amount of fat to meat ratio. I didn't care for the caramelized onions though. My mother enjoyed the pasta, but I would like to note that the sauce is quite spicy, so people who cannot handle spicy may want to consider another option. Even though we were full, the waiter encouraged us to try dessert, thus my father ordered all three flavors of sorbet (raspberry, mango, and I think lemon), while my mother had the lemon cheesecake, and I the tiramisu. All three desserts were shared and were excellent, though the tiramisu was not as coffee and bold as the tiramisu we had at Giovanni’s on the Allure last year, thus I feel the cheesecake was the winner (some of the sorbet was pretty sour, but refreshing). For dinner on the first night, we went to Wonderland. Now, my parents are pretty conservative when it comes to eating, and I was worried about how much they would be receptive towards modern gastronomy cooking. We also were still not hungry because of our big lunch at Jamie's. Since the dinner is more of a culinary experience than a big sit down food shovel, it worked out in the end. I would like to note that our dinner actually took about 2.5 hours to complete! Elton was an excellent culinary guide though, and he was patient in handling my folks and their skepticism. He took over the ordered for the small plates by asking us what types of foods are our preferences vs strong dislikes. I definitely would have to say that if you are not a bit adventurous and open-minded about eating, this restaurant may not be the best choice for you. As one of the first people in the restaurant, many on-lookers would stare at what was being brought to us and watched for our reactions when eating/drinking the dishes. Thankfully, if it was something we liked, in the end it was only about one bite, so not much was wasted. The weirdest thing that we had was the Liquid Truffle Mushroom Risotto--it literally looked like an eyeball on a spoon, and the moment it touches your tongue, it pops and delivers a bath of mushroominess down your throat. The plate that most surprised us was the Tomato Water, as I thought it would be gross, but in the end it tasted like cool tomato soup with bread dipped into it. The Birds Nest is the best--take out your video recording app choice. My parents had fun eating the smoky bird nest because that is the first time they had something of that nature. For the entrees, you choose from Earth--Chicken, Pork, and Short Rib or the Sea--Halibut and Branzino. It is intended for people to share the entrees, thus we ordered the short rib, halibut and the branzino. The short-rib was a beautiful plate and was very tender. The halibut was cooked in a bag and the mushroom sauce made it physically look unattractive, but the fish was cooked well. The branzino was aesthetically pleasing, but there was actually not that much fish and the sauce was not my favorite. The desserts were the most memorable part of the meal. We ordered the The World, Forbidden Apple, and the mushroom dessert that I cannot remember the name for. The World in the end was too sweet/rich our liking, but the effects of the melting dessert was fun. The mushroom dessert was adorable, and we enjoyed the meringue. My dad said that his favorite restaurant on the whole ship was Wonderland for the experience. On Day 2, we stopped at our perfect day at Coco Cay, thus for lunch we ate on the island. I feel that the selection choices were a better than on Labadee. My favorite part was the taco station, where the carnitas was well cooked and seasoned, with the addition of the salsa bar. There also was the standard burger/hot dogs, but they also had a salad bar, panini sandwiches, and fruit/desserts like cookies. For dinner, we ended up going to 150 CP. Overall, the food at this restaurant was a bit...heavy down to the delicious bread they served at the start, to the appetizers and entrees. I did not think my ordering choices out well, and thus I ordered the Sunchoke Velouté and Braised Short Rib for the app and Roasted Tenderloin for one (it says two but they can make it for one). My father also ordered the velouté, and Roasted Organic Beet Salad for apps and the Pan Seared Veal Medallions for the entree. My mother the Seared Honey Glazed Scallops and the Caesar Salad for apps and Lobster Thermidor for the entree. Just like at Jamie's, another item was forgotten and they never brought out the Caesar Salad, but it worked out in the end because I was not a fan of the velouté, but my mother liked it and ate it in my stead (she felt that it tasted like a broccoli soup, but the seasoning was unusual for me). The apps in itself were almost like mini entrees. The tenderloin was a perfectly cooked medium rare along with the veal, but eating two beef dishes in a row was a bit too much for me. I did enjoy the vegetables that garnished the plate more. The lobster thermidor was a bit on the small side. We ordered the Fried Cheesecake, Peanut Butter Chocolate Tart, and Hazelnut Passion Fruit Bar to share, in which we all agreed that the Fried Cheesecake was the best out of the three. Again the chocolate tart was delicious and not overly sweet, but was too rich after a heavy meal. On Day 3 (Sea Day), we decided to try Sabor for lunch. Now my mom is not a fan of Mexican food, but she was willing to give it a try, and actually enjoyed a few things I was unable to get her to try before. The biggest issue with Sabor at lunch is that the sun is beaming down, and even if you sit by a fan and in the shade, the air circulation is not that great and we actually had to rush the end of the meal because we could not breathe. It is better during dinner time because of this. We started off with the guacamole--being from Massachusetts, most avocados you buy are unripened and super green in color. These avocadoes were most definitely ripe and softer guac than we are used to. It was pretty good, but nothing to write home about. We ordered several small plates, which included the Spicy Beef Empanadas (not impressive), Red Snapper Ceviche (the sauce was delicious and made this the best starter), Fried Chile Calamari (seasoned differently than Jamie's, but it was like crispy than Jamie's as well), and Chicken-Stuffed Jalapenos Wrapped in Bacon (too salty for our liking, but still good nonetheless). We also ordered tacos, where I ordered the Pulled Pork, my father the Grilled Cobia (fish), and mother the Shrimp Taco. Each taco order comes with more than enough meat to fill three taco tortillas and they bring the salsas/toppings as well. The carnitas was very good. For dessert, we ordered only the churros because we were about to pass out from the heat--it came with both a chocolate and cream cheese-like dipping sauces. For dinner, we went back to Jamie's. The dinner menu is very similar to the lunch menu, with the addition of some of their more pricier options like lamb chops and short-rib. As a note, the menus on the Royal cruise planner is NOT the same menu you get on board. This time we had a wonderful waiter Antonio. Having eaten too many heavy meals already this cruise, I wanted to opt for something lighter. We started off with the crispy squid and garlic bread again, but we also tried the Creamy Burrata (super soft mozzarella cheese with the most delicious slow-roasted tomato topping over it). For dinner, my father had the Eggplant Parmigiana (I do not like eggplant so I did not try this), my mother the Prawn linguine again, and I ordered the Jamie's Caesar Salad, which is as basic as you can get. Our waiter felt that we should try something else on top of this though and insisted that we try the Lamb Chops, thus he ordered us an additional entree. I for one do not like meat like lamb, goat, or veal, but I did try a bite, and it was definitely well cooked and good quality. My father ended up liking it so much he ate the whole thing (and was stuffed from eating two entrees). We also ordered seasonal greens on the side, and lo and behold for the second time at Jamie's we were not given our sides, but again we were full and felt we were better off. For dessert I tried the Pavlova, and my goodness was this too sweet. The meringue was not too bad, but the raspberry sauce on top was so sour and sweet I could not eat more than a couple bites. Our overall experience was so good at the restaurant though! On Day 4, we went to the Windjammer for lunch and my goodness. Because of the boat getting to St. Thomas at 12:30PM, everyone else had the same idea to eat lunch right before the boat was letting people off. I had never experienced such a crowded buffet before. The serving stations are circular, and it was tough to figure out where the start/end of the lines were. If you do not have an excursion to get to right away, I suggest you wait 30 minutes more for an easier lunch experience. For dinner, we went to Chops--a place we had already eaten at on the Allure. Unfortunately, the host of the restaurant must have been having a bad day or something, as he was not the nicest person I had ever met (raising his finger/hand in front of our faces because he wanted to talk with the restaurant reservation person before us). Also, when we sat down, we told our waiter (while this guy was still around) that we had a show to get to and that we would not have that much time, in which the host in a "joking" manner told us that we should then go and get burgers instead. Yikes. Whatever, our waiter was kind and did whatever he could to make our dining experience as quick as possible, but still presented us with a good quality meal. I ordered the Lobster Bisque (rich with a deep taste of lobster) and Jumbo Lump Crab Cake (full of crabby goodness), which I had both on the Allure, and they are still as great as I had remembered them to be. My parents also both got the crab cake, but my dad also got the Wild Mushroom Soup and my mother the Caesar salad. My Angus Filet Minion was cooked more medium than medium rare, but still perfectly seasoned that I did not even need sauce. My father had the Prime NY Strip Steak and my mother the Spicy Jumbo Shrimp (the 5 pieces of shrimp were so large my mother had a hard time finishing). The sides again were good, but nothing to write home about. For dessert, I ordered the Warm Apple Pie a la Mode (the pie crust was not crispy but the apple was well cooked), my father the Key Lime Meringue Pie (the best dessert we ordered even if the meringue was a bit too sweet), and my mother the New York Cheesecake (pretty standard). Normally, the dinners take the full 2 hours, but we were able to finish in about an hours-time thanks to our waiter. On Day 5, we planned for a dinner at Izumi--the sushi side. Our family have been to hibachis in the past, and none of us care for the show and the meal. With the UDP, you are allowed to get 35 dollars per person, which can be pooled for the entire table. In all honesty, this is the first restaurant that we ate at that we felt was overall "mehhhh." It started off with complimentary edamame. We received the Shrimp & Vegetable Tempura next, which was much heavier and oilier than tempura we had elsewhere. What was worse, as the onion piece I bit into felt weird, and I saw that I had bit into a huge mound of flour. I pointed it out to the waiter, stating that everything else was fine, but she insisted that we get another order of tempura free of charge, so incoming another round of greasy tempura no one really wanted to eat but ate because we did not want to waste food. We shared a Rainbow Roll (standard), Izumi Spider Roll (pretty good, but heavy on the unagi sauce and fell apart with each bite), and the Baked Snow Crab & Salmon Dynamite (warm roll that was good). The rice did not seem like sushi rice. For entrees, my parents both got the Yaki Udon (my father the tofu and mother the shrimp). The portions were ginormous and neither could finish off the entree. The tofu did not go well with the yaki udon at all, as it was just huge thick blocks of fried tofu plopped on top. The noodles were pretty sweet as well. I ordered the Spicy Miso Ramen, which tasted less like miso and more like oil. Unlike the thin sliced pork I am used to at restaurants, they gave you three huge slabs of pork as well. Definitely not our favorite place, but we would consider giving it another try...maybe on a different cruise. On Day 6, we decided that for lunch we would eat at Johnny Rockets, but we all agreed that we needed a break from the specialty restaurants tonight, thus cancelled our second reservation to Izumi and planned to eat at the Windjammer instead. Johnny Rockets was crowded as usual, and you have to wait a bit if you want a table inside the restaurant. We are glad that we did wait, as it began to pour rain fiercly and people were huddling onto the counters inside with their food. As an FYI, Johnny Rockets meals comes with free sodas which they can give you a to-go cup as well (with paper straws). If you have the UDP like us, you can easily go back to Johnny Rockets and get sodas or snack on things like onion rings with somewhat ease (if it is busy, people may notice you at the counter until the head host guy tells a waiter to attend to you). The poor workers there are stretched too thin between making milkshakes, taking orders, cleaning up, and having to stop to sing and dance. I think the chefs as well were overwhelmed, as I had ordered a Smoke House burger, but found all of my toppings were added to my mother's chicken melt instead. Tonight is second formal night (lobster night), but we did not feel up to going to the MDR. The Windjammer was having "Mixed Grill" night, and thus we were excited when looking at the food options, but unfortunately everything was very dried out and inedible. We were also excited at first because they had "kimchi salad," as we are Korean and were missing Korean food. Unfortunately, it was nothing close to real kimchi minus the fact they used napa cabbage (tasted like they were trying to make kimchi candy or something). Our sweet restaurant worker Yuni told us that the cruises that go specifically to Asian countries have the authentic Asian foods. Given the quality of the food at the Windjammer, we decided to go back to the specialty dining for the last day. On Day 7, we went to Chops for lunch. The lunch offerings seemed much smaller than I expected (less than what even the RCCL app showed). I started off with the Charred Beef Carpaccio, while my father started with The Wedge, and mother the Wild Mushroom Soup. For entrees, I tried the NY Steak Salad, while my mother chose the Caesar Salad, and my father the 8 Oz. Angus Filet Mignon. The Caesar salad gave you the option of picking your protein. The salad was delicious, but if you came hungry, it may not be enough for a big appetite. I ordered vanilla ice cream for dessert and my father the Warm Chocolate Cake. For dinner, we returned back to Jamie's for one last time, where thankfully Antonio was working again. We ordered the Ultimate Garlic Bread again, but this time it was different than how it was made before, in which the waiter informed us that the chef wanted to try serving it to us in this style to see what we thought. We tried the Tomato Bruschetta as well, where the toppings were good, but the bread itself was so crunchy that we had difficulty biting into it. For dinner, I tried the Baked Lasagne, which was good. Thanks to Antonio, the Arugula and Parmesan Salad came this time around. Entertainment: I will start off by saying that I oftentimes use cruising to try to reset my sleep schedule all messed up from stress and work, thus I did not do much late night things to review on. Most of the shows had a stand where you can buy popcorn and movie candy boxes. Prepare to come at least 20 minutes before a popular show if you want a decent seat that isn’t behind a pole. They block off sections for Pinnacle, Grand Suite, Diamond Plus, Key people, but the rest of the seats get released about 10 minutes prior to the show which anyone can take after. We went to see 1887: A Journey in Time (the ice skating show) on the first night, and surprisingly enough, the seating was empty up until the last few minutes of the start. My folks are always a big fan of the ice shows because of the costumes. If you sit close to the rink, remember to bring a light sweater, as it can get chilly in there! The Las Vegas Tenors were here to perform the Headliner Show. They were definitely talented, but it was not what I was expecting. They would talk about how people would expect them to be opera (which I wish it were), but it was much more pop, country, rock mixes. 1/3 of the time was them trying to advertise themselves to get more social media clicks. 1/3 of the time was these low-brow jokes making fun of the overweight singer of the trio. The audience overall seemed to be having a good time though. The Fine Line Aqua show, as with all aqua shows was entertaining, but I noticed that this show was more focused on dancing (almost like I was watching Stomp and not a water show). Less diving into the water. Prepare to be splashed like heck if you're sitting in the front, and the person who is suspended in the air would make her rounds above the audience in the center, dripping water along the way. The highlight feature of the show is a man walking 55 feet up in the air on a tightrope--if you actually want a good look at this (I was stuck watching it for the most part on the video screen), sit either in the center or the right-hand side (when you walk in) as if you are too far left, it is blocked from your view. Get there at least 30 minutes before a popular show time if you want to try to get one of those lawn chair seats that have a drink holder instead of the hard benches. We tried to sit through Columbus, but the storyline itself was not really our thing, and just like on the Allure with that planet show, they just took modern songs and remade it to fit the show. My mother was looking forward to watching Grease, but because the boat was rocking so much, the last show on the boat was first delayed (in which people must have realized there was little else to do when so many areas of the ship/activities were being cancelled because of the rough seas, thus they just stayed in the queue for an extra hour), and then we were told that they were planning to cancel it. The cast felt bad that so many people were going to miss the show, that they decided to do a "concert" version of the show, where they talked through the show and just took turns singing their songs in front of mics with the band playing. They dedicated to sing for an hour straight, thus the crowd was appreciative of their efforts. They were definitely a talented group, but of course people were a bit disappointed they didn't get to see the whole show. Public Spaces: As I had already been on the Oasis and the Allure recently, the layout of the ship is similar with a few exceptions. For those who are looking for a quiet place to read, on the fifth floor in various spots around the jogging track area, there are lounger chairs under covered areas. While there is still sea air circulating the spots, it may be too warm and humid for some to be comfortable, but it fairly quiet. There are lounger chairs in the back of the boat on the 5th floor, but they are moreso sitting upright. For the casino, I noticed that there is one less stairwell heading up and down from the promenade area (the spiral stairs) in comparison to the Allure/Oasis. The casino has also been split to a smoking side and non-smoking side. Quarter dropping machines are on both sides. The Windjammer entrance and layout is slightly different than on the Allure/Oasis. Harmony funnels people to the side entrance, where there is a handwashing station there. The happy-happy washy-washy people at the entrance did not have the hand sanitizer that often, thus I question if people washed their hands less because of it. RCCL must have made some cut backs or changes to their buffet options, as we had noticed the variety and selection differed from our stay on the Allure. My dad was used to having cold unsweetened tea available for every meal, but they limited the mornings to orange juice, apple juice, water, milk, and hot beverages. Lunch/dinner had the inclusion of the unsweetened tea and the strawberry kiwi drink and some other fruit beverage. If you want milk at night, you can ask one of the restaurant workers, and they will get it for you from the back. The service as always was spectacular, and staff always was happy (at least on the outside) to get you a drink or silverware. I laughed on the day they had the server ringing a bell and going around to advertise ice cream. On Day 6 for breakfast, one of the head waiters came up to us and invited us to do the Bottomless Galley Brunch (I am unsure if they meant this as complimentary vs if we were to pay), where he told us that they would have offerings like sushi from Izumi, but given our bad experience with Izumi, we passed on this offer. I wish the Windjammer could stay open an extra hour later, even if it just to allow drink service and maybe some desserts, as for my family, it is more comfortable, quieter, and easier to find seating in the evenings after a show over sitting in the promenade. Windjammer did have their themed nights, whether it was Mongolian night (where you can get stir fries), Crepe Day/Night, Mixed Grill Night, Mexican Night, and of course the chocolate buffet (was the same night as Mexican night). Windjammer has an electronic sign every day that announces the dinner theme for you to plan accordingly. Oh, and Windjammer does offer a "gluten free" section. I noticed they started putting up barriers at certain stations at times to prevent people from self-serving things such as during Chocolate Buffet night where they blocked off the area and had someone serving the cakes for you, and the ice cream machines would have someone stationed there at times handing them out. We did not eat at any of the MDRs during the entire cruise, thus I cannot comment on them. Central Park still has poor air circulation and is warmer than the Boardwalk area typically. We went to NEXTCRUISE to talk about booking our possible next RCCL cruise onboard (you can either write your name for a block period of time vs walk-in queue), but the onboard credit offering for a 3 adult Balcony cabin was only 50 dollars, which is actually less than what we get from our travel agent, thus we did not feel the need to buy it on the boat. The main theater’s layout looks identical to the Allure’s. The chairs have these nearly useless drink holders. If you sit in the aisles, prepare yourself to have to get up several times during the show to let people in and out. Activities On Board/Fitness: Okay, I will be honest with you in saying ahead of time, I was quite a party pooper and did not do much activities on the ship because I spent a lot more time catching up on sleep than I had expected. They did have shows like the Love and Marriage show, The Quest, The Family Quest that normally I would like to attend, but I didn't make it to any of them. I was planning on doing a lot more things onboard the ship during the last two sea days heading back from St. Martin, but lo and behold the weather would make me give up on such plans. People seemed to have gone hog wild for the flash sales in the promenade—especially for $10 everything (swimsuit cover ups, clutches, accessories) and the 2 for $20 Port t-shirt sales. For fitness, I was looking on the itinerary for a Zumba class, but did not see any listed, thus I spent most of time walking the track instead. Cannot comment on the gym much since I didn't exercise in there, but it seemed pretty similar to the Allure. The television in the room was bad and I did not see any movies on there, but some of the public spaces had movies playing (Avengers, Aquaman, etc.). Ports and Excursions: The three ports that we went to was: 1) Coco Cay, 2) St Thomas, and 3) St Martin. If you want to get a good view of the ship pulling into port, we actually had more fun going onto deck 5 around the jogging deck, as you could see the pilot boat come close by the ship to ensure it was steadily coming in to dock. This is our first time going to Coco Cay, thus I specifically picked this itinerary for the sake of going there. The island ended up being much smaller than I had expected, but I did not notice any damage from the recent hurricane that unfortunately ravaged part of the Bahamas. You can pick up beach towels either up on the 15th deck (which was recommended to not be held up by a crowd) or before you leave the ship. We were the only ship there for the day, thus we got the whole island to ourselves, thus there were plenty of beach chairs to go around. We made it to Chill beach area and we quickly got into the water. Beach is a little bit bumpy, so those with sensitive feet may want to get water shoes. I saw several people with snorkel equipment, but did not really see fish around. We did see a jellyfish floating in the area on its own. Unfortunately, the perfect weather turned quickly, where for about an hour or so, it began downpouring on the island. Thankfully there was no lightning/thunder, so people were able to stay in the water, but the beach umbrella did not do a great job keeping the water away. I felt bad for those who had paid for those beds (very few people were actually there) given the downpour. Thankfully, the rain went away around noonish. Chill beach is close by the free eatery, which included more options that Labadee did (see the Dining section). We did not go over to the free pool area, nor did we pay to go into the water slide section, thus I cannot comment on that. I would definitely want to go back to Coco Cay in the future! The next port was St. Thomas. For those who lingered on the ship, you got to hear them test the fire drill and evacuation, where they tested a bunch of the evacuation boats (which was amusing to see float around). We had already been to St Thomas in the past, but many people feel it is one of the better places in the Caribbean to shop! St Thomas has flat rate taxi costs which is listed right by the exit of the port area. Always check and confirm with the driver before getting onto the taxi though. 2+ people reduces the cost of transport. To give an example of pricing, it was 4 dollars each way for 3 of us to go to downtown shopping area from the cruiseport. It would have only been 4 dollars for us to go to Emerald Beach, 10 dollars for Magens Bay (they do charge admission here), and 10 to get to Coki Beach. We did not feel the need to go to the beach, thus we went to the downtown shopping area. Unfortunately, they are doing full on construction of the road in the shopping area, thus people were squashed in walking on the sides--it would likely not be easy to push a wheelchair down such narrow ways. People seemed to jump upon the jewelry for sale. We went into the Tiffanys store just to see what they offered (mainly older products), and the pricing was the same as the Tiffanys back at home, but you do not have to pay for taxes of course. For US Customs, they do note that a person can purchase up to 800 dollars in merchandise in port/onboard, but that you can spend an addition 800 if purchased in the US VI (if you are American). This also pertains to cigarettes if they are a product of the US VI (+800 cigarettes) and booze (+4 Liters) if it is product of US VI. One of the stores offered free samples of rum made in St Thomas, which was delicious thus we bought the last two they had out for the day (Perserverance Bay Cream Liqueur, which tastes kind of like Sheridan's if you ever tried that before, but better!). There is also the small stalls market by the shopping area if you are looking for cheap souvenirs that is cheaper than the port shopping area. Remember, the port time is not until 12PM, thus it was already hot and humid when we ventured out. As a side note, Verizon claims that St Thomas was included in my cellphone package, thus I did not have to pay extra to use my phone on the island, and the reception was overall pretty good. Most of the jewelry stores offer free bottles of water to those browsing, and some offered some form of a free gift for browsing as well. For those who like Alex and Ani, there is a store there with a pretty large selection including those that are exclusive to the island. For St Martin, this is our third time back there, and again we were just here last year, thus we decided to spend more time on the boat. I think there was a lot of others who decided the same despite the weather being great. We spent time just in the cruiseport shopping area. If you are looking for the cheapest cigarettes (I do not smoke but I bring them back as gifts), we found that Admirals had the cheapest prices (cheaper than on the ship) and more of a selection (most cartons of 200 appeared to be about 30 bucks a pop duty free). Admirals also had deals on other souvenirs (B2G1F and such). FYI if you are looking for international snacks, they have a decent selection as well (Korean cup ramen bowls, Indian snacks, European chocolates like Kinder and Toblerone). The port area has cheap 5 dollar t-shirts if you want something bare minimum. Very easy for functionally limited people to ambulate around with a scooter with the exception of some of the stores. The last call ship boarding was supposed to be at 3:30PM, but they gave everyone an extra hour. Fellow Passengers: For the most part, fellow passengers continue to be well mannered and not a problem traveling with. I love how diverse the passengers are becoming. Despite being at full capacity, the ship rarely felt crowded. One thing I had noticed is that the number of motorized scooters has drastically been increasing since being on the Oasis and Allure. There were quite a few passengers renting scooters, but did not know how to drive them well, thus they would end up blocking traffic, running into the backs of people's legs, or needed the staff to park them in places that wouldn't block people from getting by. Scooters are no longer limited to one group of people, as it is young and old and of all shapes and sizes. I'm glad that the cruise line can accommodate for people with disabilities, but they need to do a better job with doing education/management. I heard one guy in the casino state that he felt he was a walking target by the number of people in scooters ramming into his legs and nearly knocking him over. Despite being school time, there were still plenty of kids on board, but they were typically well controlled by their parents. Kids seemed to enjoy the waterslides a lot. Only once we saw a group of unsupervised, rowdy kids in the Windjammer (the kids were shouting and playing catch with a football in the Windjammer, making a mess while a poor waitress was trying to clean up after them and make sure they didn't hit other passengers). Unfortunately, on the day of disembarkation, we had encountered an awfully rude couple. The cruise workers told us to await in Boleros instead of lining up for the self-departure. Once we were cleared and the line was moving, we were trying to move with all of the other people out of the area, but this couple decided to single out my parents, jabbing their fingers in their faces and telling them to get to the back of the line and saying rude things. Their manner obviously showed that they assumed my parents were line-cutting, non-English-speaking individuals that targeted my folks out of all of the others they just let pass by, thus my mother said that we--just like all the other people were moving to the back of the line. Gross. Maybe they were upset they didn't get their 5th helping of donuts and bacon at the buffet this morning and were ravenously hangry. This self-assist departure line moved very quickly too, thus we were off the boat no more than a few minutes after those racist clowns. I think the number one rule people broke during this cruise was filling personal water bottles at the water/ice dispensers despite signs asking people not to. Oh, and a very important shout-out to all the mommas and poppas out there in the audiences, who scooped up their crying child and went out of the show areas until they were soothed! You da real MVPs. Disembarkation: We never received a printed copy of our stateroom invoice on the last day, but I was able to double check through the emailed statement (the RCCL app was not always accurate). FYI, in a clear, enclosed bowl close by the Bionic Bar area on the promenade, there is a place you can write down your purchases at any of the RCCL onboard/RCCL trusted partner stores, which states that it covers up to 30 days if any issues with the merchandise were to come up. I know that people are scared of facial recognition and the government being able to track/stalk people and all, but oh boy did it help make this process wayyyyy easier. I was a bit nervous on how Self-Assist Departures would go, but GoPort recommended us doing so to get off the ship quickly. Our flight was at 12:30PM, thus we finished our breakfast and got down to the promenade at about 6:45AM. US Customs did not clear us until about 6:55AM, but as I had said in the previous section, the line looked long, but moved very quickly. Getting off the ship was easy even carrying luggage, as most of the time the ramps were all going downhill and easy to wheel them down. The line pretty much was constantly moving with very little stops along the way. We did not need to fill out a declaration getting off the ship of the things we purchased. We would just look at a camera, where they would take a picture and if you are not a suspicious person, I guess they just move you along, as we off the ship by 7AM and on the GoPort bus by 7:20AM. They had all the signs for where to go if you are doing rideshare apps vs shuttles, and GoPort had a sign leading you to one of the furthest spots away, but very easy to find. All we had to do is give our name and number of people, and the driver took our luggage and our bus left by 7:30AM. 45 minutes later, we arrived at MCO, where everyone got off. They stated that all people checking in were to head to the third floor, while those catching Ubers go to the second floor. Check in at Jetblue was fast, and after we dumped off our luggage, we went to the security line, which has an electric sign to tell people of estimated wait times. TSA Pre-Check has their own separate line on the side. At 8:30AM, the estimated wait in the line was around 13-18 minutes. Please bear in the mind that MCO has a lot of children coming through, who usually needs extra time with security line process. We took the tram over to our Gate area, where it had a few eating options and gift shop area. They had a water bottle filling station around Gates 20-29. My parents and I realize now we can easily make it with plenty of time to spare to get to the terminal, but this only happened because everything went smoothly. Final Thoughts: Maybe because this was our third Oasis-class ship in a row, we have hit the point where there is less excitement for all the extra bells and whistles on the ship. Service for the most part was fantastic, and we had a great time despite all of the issues along the way overall. While the weather was crazy, it did not hold us back from having a great time. I think we may try to find a smaller ship that is more port-intensive for our next cruise to see how quality stands. My folks still would be happy trying Symphony as our next ship as well though. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
My last cruise in May on Mariner got five stars. I am Diamond + so I have done many cruises. My recent September cruise on Harmony to Rotaan etc., was definitely one of the more disappointing experiences. The Good: Overall ship condition: ... Read More
My last cruise in May on Mariner got five stars. I am Diamond + so I have done many cruises. My recent September cruise on Harmony to Rotaan etc., was definitely one of the more disappointing experiences. The Good: Overall ship condition: Excellent. Food: Good. Service: Excellent from stateroom attendant to waiters in the dining room. VROOM worked well. If you are in your twenties … or had several drinks, the shows probably suited you just fine. Grease was ok, but the Columbus show had bad singing and poor ‘acting’. The Fine Line aqua show was a mismash of swim and acrobatics with no unifying theme – and much more emphasis on tumbling than acqua activities. The parade was poor - nowhere as good as previous years. The cruise director was surprisingly boring and virtually missing in person. He was on TV helping to sell the usual cruise stuff! So .. ballroom dance music is advertised in Boleros for 5 - 7 pm. Sad to say … RCCL ballroom is Latin only … no dances such as waltz or foxtrot! RCCL seems to be gradually convincing their older clientele that they should give up cruising - Harmony is definitely geared toward young families. I could always rely on Freedom having a good mix of activities for all ages. Not so in Harmony. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I'm a proud Royal Caribbean Crown and Anchor member but I felt Harmony was a disappointment. It felt like more passengers were added without any expansion for accommodation. Pool chairs literally touch each other side to side. ... Read More
I'm a proud Royal Caribbean Crown and Anchor member but I felt Harmony was a disappointment. It felt like more passengers were added without any expansion for accommodation. Pool chairs literally touch each other side to side. Elevator wait times were extensive (my mom cannot navigate stairs well). Bar lines were quite long. Comfort wise, those pool chairs and the lack of mini fridges (a cooler is beyond inadequate) were the worst. On the pro side, most staff were as wonderful as we've come to expect. The food was amazing and the shows were pretty good. The Escape Room was our favorite activity but the highlight for us was the Salute to Military and First Responders. Beautiful, moving and well-deserved. I look forward to my return to Allure/Oasis or Freedom class. Harmony is great for on-the-go thrill seekers, I guess, but relaxation didn't seem to be a focus at all. It's just too crowded. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I booked this cruise specifically to see Coco Cay after it's supposed $250 million update. The cruise was a mixed bag so to speak. Check in was a breeze, no waiting. Cabin was nicely arranged & large with 2 couches for an inside, ... Read More
I booked this cruise specifically to see Coco Cay after it's supposed $250 million update. The cruise was a mixed bag so to speak. Check in was a breeze, no waiting. Cabin was nicely arranged & large with 2 couches for an inside, but was NOT QUIET.Never book a promenade view room unless you don't want to sleep. I ate all the meals in the dinning room because I couldn't stand the crowds of ill mannered people at the buffet, I mean did some of these people ever see food before ?...pigs. The food in the dinning room was good, not great.I only had to wait about 10 minutes each evening for a table, but the service was a little slow. The 2 shows I saw, ice show & show with singers & dancers was very good. The ship itself is very nice, BUT CANNOT HANDLE the amount of people that it does & on my cruise it was only 3/4 full because of hurricane Dorian. Not enough elevators, both the pools too small, the adult pool was like a sardine can. The music around the pools was just so loud, do they think everybody is deaf ? Coco Cay was a BIG LETDOWN. I am not a fan of water slides or such so I stayed on the "FREE" side. The beach are is NOT GOOD, full of seaweed & not even nice to walk around, you sank into some kind of "muck". There was also a stench of sewer all around. The freshwater pool was a joke also, just a wading pool filled with bodies. There were enough chairs around the beach & pool. The food offerings were typical beach fare. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We were so anxious to sail on this refurbished ship since we had sailed on her before many times & loved her Sadly we were the first sailing on her after the hurricane Dorian. But on the brighter side we experienced her delivering ... Read More
We were so anxious to sail on this refurbished ship since we had sailed on her before many times & loved her Sadly we were the first sailing on her after the hurricane Dorian. But on the brighter side we experienced her delivering food & supplies to the Bahamas. It was a great experience to even bring some refugees from Freeport to Nassau. The food on this ship was average & plentiful. No reason to go hungry Luckily Nassau was not too affected by the hurricane. However, we were looking forward to Coco Cay since we also have this ship booked for a Christmas Cruise where we are taking our whole family of 14 with 6 cabins booked. Coco Cay in our opinion was not ready for visitors. The island smelled like sewage & the ocean was disgusting. After about an hour we returned to the ship as I felt sick. We just could not eat there. Our outside window cabin was very nice & our attendant was average Our dinner server was fabulous & kept us entertained. We were disappointed in the quality of the coffee in the coffee shop on deck 5. We remembered it for having excellent coffee. I guess they wanted you to use Starbucks Embarking & Disembarking went great & smooth. All told it was a relaxing getaway but nothing above average. Gjginparadise Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Myself, my sister, and my parents did this for a birthday cruise, sailing on Friday and coming back on Monday. We've been on over 10 cruises. It was overall, a good cruise. The ship was beautiful, being renovated recently. You ... Read More
Myself, my sister, and my parents did this for a birthday cruise, sailing on Friday and coming back on Monday. We've been on over 10 cruises. It was overall, a good cruise. The ship was beautiful, being renovated recently. You could tell, especially on the promenade, that it's been upgraded. With amenities such as starbucks, ice skating, the escape room, and laser tag, these definitely added to the value to sailing on the ship. Amenities: We did laser tag, and ice skating. Laser tag was ran really smoothly, with the staff recognizing that someone in our party's equipment wasn't properly working. They fixed this solution within seconds, which we were happy about, especially since on a previous sailing on the Liberty of the Seas, they didn't recognize that there was anything wrong, resulting in the points of someone in our party not being counted throughout the entire game. The game was around 10 minutes, and towards the end it does get fatiguing. However, it was a lot of fun. Ice skating, unfortunately, didn't go as well. There was only one opportunity to skate, which took place on the last night. The ladies that signed myself and one other person were extremely nice, and smoothly made sure that we signed all of the required papers in order to skate. However, the gentlemen that handed out the skates downstairs, was rude and dismissive, especially since one person in our parties' skates were the wrong size. Not responding when we said thank you, dismissive when I was confused over why I received a size 8 when I was a 9, with him saying "its fine", in a passive tone. All in all, skating was fun, however found it a little mundane since the music choices weren't up to par, and it went by too fast. We did not have time to do the flow rider, the sky pad, waterslides, or the escape room(cost extra). However, from the looks of it they all seemed like they would be a good time. Shows: Stage Shows: We went to the Welcome Aboard Show and the Adult Comedy. The Welcome Aboard Show was very entertaining and we enjoyed it. It was a variety show. The Adult Comedian was funny during the variety show, but only had us laughing a few times during the night time show. Gameshows: We went to the Finish The Lyric Gameshow and The Quest Gameshow. We left the Finish The Lyric Gameshow early. We thought the song choices consisted of too many oldies such as Elton John which is odd for a relatively young ship. The host running it though she seemed nice was rather boring and didn't do a good job at engaging the crowd. Also, most of the members in the game show were from one group which made it boring to watch. We've been to the Quest Gameshow on Liberty of the Seas last December, and the show on this ship did not impress as much. The show is not for the easily offended, but themes during this show were more inappropriate than the ones on Liberty. My group and I are not easily offended, but the inappropriate rounds were at least 70% of the show. This obviously varies from ship to ship, as I presume the cruise director has a large part in theming so we did not enjoy it as much. However, it is always the most exciting game show of the cruise so I will indefinitely continue to check them out. Coco Cay: Honestly, anyone looking for a cruise to go on should pick this ship just for the fact that it goes to their private island, CocoCay. It was outstanding, and as they stated numerous times throughout the cruise, the "perfect day". The amenities were remarkable, having multiple buffets so it was never too crowded with people. The buffet here was higher quality than the one on board, having many different options including as the standard choices like burgers and hotdogs, but also cuban sandwiches, portabello sandwiches, pre made salads, a taco bar, and plethora of desserts(including, as myself and my entire group stated, the best brownies they've ever ate) and fresh cookies. They also had a fruit station. In addition, having a long stretch of a beach area, a quieter beach area, and a beautiful fresh-water pool with a bar; it really made it perfect for accommodating to different groups based off different wants when you're vacationing. There was an abundance of seating, so it was good not feeling rushed to have to get there super early to get prime seating (only at the pool bar I would recommend heading there early if you want a seat near the dj and pool bar). The DJ that played at the pool was top knotch. He played current songs, and implemented multiple genres, and even line dances. It was a great mix and had us grooving the entire time. They also had the waterpark, ziplining, and the hot air balloon, which were an additional cost and we did not use. We had an amazing day at their private island, and cannot wait to return soon. Dining: The dining at the buffet food wasn't the best we've had, however, it got the job done if you wanted a snack throughout the day, such as hamburgers and hot dogs. However, during dinner time, especially if you got there early, there were a lot more options. There was even a fondue station, with a very friendly staff member handing us out whatever pastry/fruits we wanted with the chocolate fondue. The dining room was definitely an enjoyable experience, but not perfect. The waiter slightly rushed the experience, and we had him twice though we opted for My Time Dining, which can vary your seat/waiter nightly in the dining room. In addition, while there were no more guest to assist since the dining room was about to close, we still hadn't gotten our dessert yet but he was too busy cleaning up his other tables to get us our desserts, and even give us coffee(which we never got even upon request.) However, the food was always very good, and we never had to wait super long for our first two courses(appetizers and entrees). The only issue we had on the cruise was when my sister and I tried to order drinks for the first time on the ship at the pool bar during the sail away party, I guess our cards were pre printed before we were of legal drinking age(our birthday was a few days prior) so we were denied service despite the fact that we presented ID's and repeatedly told him we were of age. The manager, I believe, was very rude about the entire situation and kept repeating he could not serve us. All in all, we just went to guest services and got our cards reprinted so the indication that you are under age is removed. The gentlemen at guest services was very confused by the situation himself, clearly seeing that we were over the legal drinking age. I understand that it is an extremely big deal to not serve someone alcohol who is underage, but he lacked proper customer service communication. I'm sure that when an employee swipes your card your age is shown, so I wish he would've not treated us as if we were doing something wrong and communicated that we should go to guest services to get our cards fixed because there is an indication on your card stating you are underage because obviously we wouldn't be aware. Overall it was a nice getaway. It was a good crowd on the ship, with about 5% of the ship being rowdy, and too intoxicated for my liking. It was predominately older couples, families, and larger all middle aged adult groups. Nice ship, and with tiny improvements it could've been a 5/5 vacation. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this cruise because it went out of port canaveral with good dates before moving my son back into college at ERAU. Royal Carribean is usually pricier so we had not tried it before. I found a sale on this cruise so we decided to go. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it went out of port canaveral with good dates before moving my son back into college at ERAU. Royal Carribean is usually pricier so we had not tried it before. I found a sale on this cruise so we decided to go. We had been on Carnival Splendor and Norweigan Breakaway before this cruise. Our time to board was 1:30 but we arrived at 11 and were able to board with no wait. It was so easy! We were able to bring 12 bottles of soda and 2 bottles of wine onboard with our carry on. We got wine glasses from room service by calling dining. Once on board we went to the windjammer buffet which was good. The included water, lemonade and strawberry kiwi water was good. We drink a lot of bottled water and we're a little worried but it was fine. Our sea pass cards were attached to our cabin door. That's how we received them. We had an inside cabin on deck 7 for 4 of us: me, my husband teenaged daughter & son. The cabin was enough room for all of us. It had a small sofa ,1 large bed and 2 pull down beds for the kids. I liked the sofa since it added extra seating when there were 4 of us in there. There was plenty of storage and a small safe. I do have to say it was tight in there putting away our clothes with all 4 of us in there. We should have done it 2 at a time. Luggage fit under the bed once it was empty. There is a small safe and tv. Shower was tight as I assume most are on cruises. It was tube shape with a semi circular door. Difficult for women to shave legs. Otherwise good. Muster deck is on the back of cabin door. We were confused at first by looking at our sea pass card location. It did not tell you what deck. Muster drill was hot since they line you up in a small area. I wonder what happens if you don't show up? We were told we had to wait for everyone and it amazed me the people strolling in last minute not even looking like they were late while we were dripping with sweat from the heat. The ship is beautiful and service was excellent. You are able to go all the way to the front tip of the ship (like Titanic movie) on deck 4 where the helipad was located. We were also able to see into the bridge by going through the serenity adult pool area (deck 11 I think) go outside on the left side and to the front of the ship. They had the shades closed in the evening but you could see right in the window during the day. I did like that they left chairs out on the deck at night. When we went on the Norweigan Breakaway they put all the chairs away at night which left no place to sit. We saw the ice skating show and comedian juggler which was excellent. We did not care for the musical show. Reservations were not needed for the shows. They had mini golf, basketball court, pool, water, Slides and a rock climbing wall which were included. The padi (virtual reality thing) was included but we missed our reservation on the first day and couldn't get another time. Payment was required for the escape room and flow rider (fun to watch). They also had ice skating sessions during specific times (bring long pants & socks). There were 2 pools 1 for all and the other was adults only (16 & older). They also had these nice clam shell beds in certain areas (hard to tell if anyone was in there without going to the side & looking right in). There was included frozen yogurt on the pool deck (help yourself) which was good. Choices were vanilla, chocolate & swirl wth both. We don't care for Nassau (doesn't feel safe) so we stayed on the ship. Perfect day Coco Cay was great. We loved the little island. Best part is that there is no tender. You walk right off the ship but don't forget your sea pass card. You bring (sign out) towels from the ship and can exchange them if dry ones are needed. There were enough chairs and umbrellas for all. We didn't need to rush to the island to get chairs. They have trams but it is certainly walkable. They have some shopping and hair braiding. One section was not open yet. I believe it will open in December. There were 2 beaches. a lagoon area/beach with less waves a giant pool with a beautiful bridge and a swim up bar with music. There is also a splash zone for kids that was included. Beach was beautiful even though it rained a little while we were there. There were many jelly fish maybe because it was late August. Food was just ok. Same buffet type food as on the ship. They have a snack shack with mozzarella sticks, chicken sandwiches and funnel cakes that I thought was better than the buffet area. You had to pay extra for the water park: the water slides and wave pool. You even had to pay $18 for a floating mat if you wanted it. Had to pay for balloon ride, zip line, and any excursions (kayak, wave runner etc.) ( commercials are misleading- I originally thought everything was included) We did have a great time even without all the pay extra activities. Before the cruise I had read many reviews which mentioned bad food. I usually will read the reviews and ignore most of the negative comments since more people write a review to complain rather than say how great something is. I should have listened to the bad food reviews. We were very disappointed in the food. I have to mention that we did not partake in any of the restaurants that you pay extra for. I feel we are paying enough for the cruise and the included food should be good. Maybe not gourmet but Good enough that you enjoy going to the dining room. Unfortunately, just like many reviews said the food was not tasty. We did not enjoy it. We did go to the dining room every evening. The texture on much of the food was off and it just did not taste good. It was comparable (even worse) to dining room food on our Carnival Splendor cruise. When we went on the Norweigan Breakaway I have to say the food was good in the dining room. We looked forward to going to dinner. Breakaway even had home made crepes every evening in the buffet area made to order. The buffet on Mariner was a buffet - ok except for breakfast which was awful the first morning. It was also packed & difficult to find a table in the morning. The rest of the cruise we ate breakfast in the main dining room and it was better than the buffet but not great. If you go on Mariner eat breakfast in the dining room. Buffet hours were also limited so there were times when it was not open. Promenade cafe is open 24 hours so you can get sandwiches & pizza here. It is included. Also early bird coffee is available. Unfortunately, I would not go back on Mariner of the seas soley because of the food. Getting off the ship was a breeze. We had our luggage in the hallway outside our cabin before 11 the night before. They give you tags to put on it. Elevators are crowded/busy on the last day so I would not carry off my luggage. We had limited continental breakfast in the main dining room and then waited for our number to be called. Walked off the ship to the facial recognition, easily found our luggage which was separated by number and went to the car rental shuttle area. It was so easy. Beautiful ship but unfortunately terrible food. Maybe the people who participated in the upcharge restaurants enjoyed it? Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We went on this cruise for my brother's wedding. I was just on the Allure in Feb 2019 so I've experienced a large ship. But this time, it looked even more crowded, lines everywhere for everything. Line up to wash your hands ... Read More
We went on this cruise for my brother's wedding. I was just on the Allure in Feb 2019 so I've experienced a large ship. But this time, it looked even more crowded, lines everywhere for everything. Line up to wash your hands for windjammer. The staff don't look happy at all. Copy pasted my review for Royal Caribbean: I really liked the friendliness of my wait staff on table 448 Erik and his assistant Jonabelle, they were both very approachable and excellent. On the first night, we were assigned to table 446 with Vincent, and he never smiled, just dumped menus on us, took our orders, grabbed the menus out of our hands, dumped the dishes on us, never asked if we wanted anything to drink, never asked if the food was ok, never asked us if we wanted coffee after meal. what kind of service is that?!! We're on a cruise, not at a fast food restaurant. if i ever get service like this back home, i would never go back to said restaurant. Needless to say, we switched tables the second night. windjammer's hours are RIDICULOUS!! you eat 5pm, finish a show, want to go up for some fruits, windjammer closed 8:45pm, 8pm no more fruits. no place to hang out with friends that has food past 8:45 except for Sorrento's or Park cafe and there's so much noise from poor live singing band. On the last night though, we found the Schooner's bar with good piano music and a good singing voice. Food was ok, I wouldn't go to a restaurant that serves this quality of food back home. Dessert was just sad, always the same desserts, again, I wouldn't pay for this quality of dessert back home. The warm chocolate cookie was good though but only served one night... The water slide staff were very pleasant and funny. Went to tour to visit Roatan, Honduras, it was good except they overbooked at last minute, everyone got on to the bus to realize there weren't enough seats, so we had to drive somewhere else to switch bus. This 39$ tour included the chocolate factory, it was interesting! Although my brother paid $25 booking with shore agencies. I didn't know Roatan is 2nd place to Australian for its coral reef. I would want to go back and do some snorkeling or learn scuba dive. Swam with Stingrays in Cozumel, it was very nice and the price was very decent $54. Photo package for two was $50USD, very reasonable compared to what they ask for Dolphins when I went two years ago. We also booked a kitchen tour with a special buffet, it was quite interesting to see behind the scenes of how the food is made. In resume, the main reason I enjoyed this vacation is because of the company I had in my family cruise party. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We got to the port around noon and was disappointed to find a long line at security. It took about 30 minutes to get through the line. After getting on board, it took another 20 minutes to get through the line at the buffet. I guess we got ... Read More
We got to the port around noon and was disappointed to find a long line at security. It took about 30 minutes to get through the line. After getting on board, it took another 20 minutes to get through the line at the buffet. I guess we got there at the same time as everyone else, because after that there was no line. For the muster drill, they let you meet in different areas, but did not allocate enough space. Our number was in a small part of the dining room, and we were forced to stand all packed together. They now show you a cheesy video that takes a while. The ship itself is impressive, and there are lots more activities than other ships we've been on before. However, there are also long lines sometimes. For the pizza, for the elevators (which sometimes seem to take forever), the flow rider, the zip line, and even for My Time Dining at certain times. We've done My Time Dining in its different forms on 3 cruise lines, and had never had the issues we had on this ship. On the first night, they insisted on giving me a regular reservation time of 5:15 even though I made it clear to them that was too early and I wouldn't be able to make it most nights. Then, every night when we go there later, usually around 6-6:30, they would lecture us about coming earlier the next day. Every night they did this. It was really ruining our experience. On lobster night, they sent us to the main dining room on the 4th floor, which apparently was a complete surprise to our waiter. He and the woman who was told to take us up there had an odd conversation about what we were doing there (since this was about an hour into the early set dining time). He tried to be polite to us, but you could tell he didn't want us there. I really don't understand why the dining staff at the Harmony made My Time Dining so hard. The entire point is to be able to come when you want, yet they tried to make us feel guilty every day for doing just that. The waiters themselves were actually quite good and efficient. I was impressed by how quickly the dinner service went, typically about and hour and 15 minutes or so. While there were a lot of activities scheduled on the ship, the staff running them often seemed unprepared, confused, or just bad. They had a different person running the trivia each day, and that person typically couldn't pronounce the questions (or answers) correctly. We've gone to tons of trivia sessions on numerous ship and have never run into this problem before. We even witnessed an argument between a passenger and a crew member over whether one of the answers was correct. This was also a first. For one of the dance sessions, the guy started 10 minutes late and ended 10 minutes early, for a 30 minute session that was actually was only about 10 minutes (3 songs). The dance and fitness sessions held by Sergio were great though. He was really the only entertainment staff member who seemed to take his job seriously. Most of the rest of them seemed like they were just going through the motions (and poorly at that). The staff at the windjammer buffet and the other dining locations were very efficient though. They would take your plate and clear the tables as soon as humanly possible. On several occasions in the windjammer, we had RC employees stop to ask how everything was and if we were happy with everything. The food in the dining rooms was pretty good, but lacked variety. The fool at the windjammer wasn't so good, especially for breakfast. The eggs were runny, the bacon didn't taste right, and the waffles/pancakes didn't taste fresh. They didn't seem to push alcohol as much on this cruise, which we appreciated because we don't drink. The kids got a non-alcoholic drink from the robot arm. Why do they charge a service charge for a robot-made drink? We had an ocean view balcony cabin which was nice. Unfortunately, we had a 'service animal' in the room next to us. It was a little fluffy shih tzu which would bark periodically. I don't know what service a shih tzu provides besides keeping his owner company, but it didn't seem quite right on a cruise ship. We got guarantee cabins which turned out to be a mistake, because RC put our kids in a cabin very far away from our cabin. We were given our cabin as soon as we booked, 4 months out, but our kids weren't given theirs until 2 weeks before sailing. We won't be booking a guarantee again. We had reservations for most of the shows, but that turned out to be unnecessary except for the first night (Grease) and the water show, which was always packed. Grease was inappropriate for children. The water show was impressive, but ours was cancelled halfway through due to the rain. The ice skating show was boring - our kids all left about 15 minutes in. The comedians they had were ok, not great. The kids enjoyed the juggler/comedian. We paid for the all digital photo package, which is $310 onboard, but they give you a $30 discount if you buy it within the first 2 days on the ship (it was only $250 online before the cruise). We got 300+ photos taken, and at least 100 of those were good ones - we even had them take individual photos of the kids - so we got our money's worth. Their photo kiosks only work during certain hours when manned by their photographers. That was annoying. After paying for the package, I was given a website I could go to to see all the photos I purchased. It didn't work that well, but they said it was still in the testing phase. Disembarkation was the smoothest we'd ever experienced. We were allowed to stay in our room until our number was called, immigration only took a minute as they do facial recognition now from the passports, and were walked right out of there with no wait. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Oh where to start... The cruise started as a bit of a disaster. First, when I went to check in, they did not have me on the manifest ANYWHERE. Apparently their archaic AS400 system did not bring me over onto the manifest. So they had to ... Read More
Oh where to start... The cruise started as a bit of a disaster. First, when I went to check in, they did not have me on the manifest ANYWHERE. Apparently their archaic AS400 system did not bring me over onto the manifest. So they had to manually check me in at the customer service desk and print my card there. That would have been all good and well, except that we had paid for the drink package, which was NOT listed on my card and thus my card did not work for drinks. Yay. I ended up having to purchase the bracelet so I didn't have to go through the spiel at each bar and have them try to figure out what was going on, but that is for later. They use a mishmash of computer systems which caused non-stop problems the first couple of days.This included random surcharges showing up on our room. Poor customer service must have groaned whenever they saw me coming because they knew there were more charges to remove. The random surcharges happened to everyone in our party and judging from the constant line at customer service, I am guessing we weren't the only ones. My suggestion for checking in is to make sure that you have a paper copy of your reservations. The systems don't always talk to each other and if that's the case, the barcode on your phone won't work. Absolutely make reservations for the shows. This ensures that you get a good seat and since we had my grandparents with us, we never had to wait in the standby lines which can get quite long. Although, again, there were some glitches with their computers randomly cancelling and reassigning us to different shows. We had to take care of that once we got on board. The shows themselves though were amazing. My grandfather is a hard man to please and he loved them all. Making the reservations ensures that you will get to see them all, and I highly recommend seeing all the shows. For those of you going on the Harmony, the ship rocks a surprising amount for the size. I get sea sick easily and as a preventative put a sea sick patch on prior to boarding. However the first night I encountered quite a few women in the restrooms rather sea sick. Just something to keep in mind as Royal has no control over the wave size. If you know you're prone to sea sickness, take measures to prevent it. Our cabin was an interior cabin, but it was lovely. I learned a lesson and will get a window or balcony next time. Sea sickness and interior do not go well together. Not Royal's fault, all mine on this one. Our cabin steward though was amazing. He always had a smile on his face and asked us how our day was. Loved him and loved the cute towel animals he left us! For those of you that are early risers like myself, you will be disappointed. Very few amenities are available for early risers. There is only one coffee shop that opens somewhat early. I enjoyed going up to the solarium before anyone else was up and just relaxing. Caution though, it gets HOT up there. It is covered in glass with very little ventilation. Also, for an adults only area, kids order at the bar there a surprising amount. There also is no pool in the adult only section, just a bunch of hot tubs. It would be nice to see even a small pool in the adult only section. For those of us that look forward to the soft serve machines, prepare to be severely disappointed. They are only open for a few hours a day, you cannot serve yourself, there are no toppings and the only flavor options are vanilla/strawberry swirl or chocolate/strawberry swirl. The desert options in the buffet weren't that great either. The Windjammer had excellent food, but much like the Solarium, it was uncomfortably hot in there, no matter the time of day. The food choices varied day by day which was nice, but it was not really a pleasant experience to eat up there. The only saving grace was our attendant Cipran. Nicest guy and always had a fresh mimosa for me. The man is a saint. It's best if you can just explain the drink you want to bar tenders. Even though there is a standard drink book at each of the bars, many of the bartenders don't really know the drinks in them and you often have to point them out. Just tell them how to make it and you'll be fine. I did have one bad experience with a bartender when I ordered a drink and he looked me in the eye and said "You know that drink is literally my nightmare, right?" Seriously dude, I just wanted to try the drink. The Central Park area is fantastic first thing in the morning and in the evening they often have musicians up there. My fiance and I really enjoyed that area a lot. It was a great spot to relax and decompress from the day's activities. The plants were beautiful and with the open air above, at night it was simply gorgeous. 10/10 would spend more time there. The band is a good idea in concept, they seem to have some glitches to work out still. It did not work in Coco Cay because their computer systems were down... again. Let me tell you, first port of call and I was already tired of the computer glitches. And yet, they continued. On St. Marten, people were having trouble getting on and off the ship because the systems went down again. So many complaining people about missing their dinner times and shows. I get it, the main dining room food was spectacular. The main dining room was nothing but exceptional. The only thing I didn't enjoy was having all the waiters do a dance. I worked at a Johnny Rockets back in the day. There was nothing I hated more than having to stop working to do a dance in the middle of a rush. I can relate to these servers. They are busy, please just let them do their job. I don't need to be entertained during dinner. Our server Erik was amazing. He regularly made my grandfather laugh and made the entire dining experience amazing. The food was beyond fantastic. We didn't try any of the specialty dining options because we honestly never really felt the need to. The menu changes nightly and we were never once disappointed with the food. Okay, I think that about sums it up. Royal, get on the ball and fix your computer systems. That initial day was so incredibly frustrating and having to buy the band just to stop going through the hassle was annoying. The band is a great idea though... when it works. I only encountered the one rude bartender the entire time, so that says something for your staff. Honestly, most of the staff was simply amazing. I loved talking to them and hearing where they were all from. The activities offered onboard were okay, but the only way to learn about any of them was through the app. The ship is massive and beautiful. Once onboard, you don't even realize there are almost 7000 people on the ship with you. We booked all of our shore excursions ourselves. The ones offered by Royal were a little too touristy. We booked tours of the islands privately and had a great time. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Family of 4 (2 kids ages 6-9), plus grandparents. We were excited to go on this ship after seeing so many fun videos on You Tube, as well as seeing pics of the renovated ship. The ship itself was nice, as was our stateroom. But, the ... Read More
Family of 4 (2 kids ages 6-9), plus grandparents. We were excited to go on this ship after seeing so many fun videos on You Tube, as well as seeing pics of the renovated ship. The ship itself was nice, as was our stateroom. But, the slides were closed half the time and the main pool was also closed most of Saturday (Nassau) as some one had thrown up in it. So basically, half the cruisers were trying to fit into the hot tubs, with kids jumping into them having splash battles. The Flow Rider was just ok, as it was basically just "boogie boarding " on a boat. (Our 9 yo said she was not given an option to "surf" even though she's done it before elsewhere). The food was terrible at the Windjammer and MDR. Honestly, it was akin to a 5th rate Vegas buffet. We had taken a cruise on Adventure of the Seas 2yrs ago and I recall that food being just average, but Mariners ' food was downright terrible - very bland, swimming in fat, same breakfast & lunch lineup all three days. MDR food was only a slight notch better than Windjammer and took so long to be served. Atrium was fine, although shopping not great, with limited selection. Entertainment was fine. Service was good, not great. Overall, this cruise was just barely average, especially with the price we paid. All 6 of us were disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I chose this short cruise from Port Canaveral because a friend of mine was heading down there for job training, and we wanted a quick look at the newly renovated Coco Cay island. I'll break down my review into several parts: The ship, ... Read More
I chose this short cruise from Port Canaveral because a friend of mine was heading down there for job training, and we wanted a quick look at the newly renovated Coco Cay island. I'll break down my review into several parts: The ship, the cabin and steward, the food, the bars and service, and Coco Cay itself. We also went to Nassau but I think Nassau is terrible so I won't let that be part of my review. THE SHIP: As most of you know it's newly renovated and the Mariner now has some new features like an escape room, laser tag, the Bamboo room, etc. It's a beautiful ship with a wonderful Royal Promenade where I honestly spent too much time in the bars, haha! My friend and I did the escape room and liked that alot, I think it's worth the extra cost of about $20 per person. I also liked how the ship didn't feel too huge, and you got to see the same people wandering around regularly. I like to interact with folks so getting to know the people on even a short cruise for me is nice. THE CABIN AND STEWARD: We had an interior cabin on the 7th floor. I don't think I'll do that again, not because the cabin was bad, but because I don't think it every really got cool enough for my tastes, and at night in the absolutely darkness it feels like I'm in a prison cell. Some people however, love this cool dark atmosphere so if you enjoy such a thing, you do you. I didn't care for it after sailing on balcony's previously, and I missed that connection with the outdoors and light. However the price was right for a July sailing because otherwise the summer makes balcony travel nigh-unaffordable. Our steward, Ada, was honestly average. She did her job cleaning the room, she brought me extra pillows when I asked for them. Other than that, we barely saw her which was fine. My knock on her was the towel animals. We only got one towel animal on a 3-night sailing. This was my friend's first cruise, and that's the sort of thing I was wowed by on my first cruise. I feel like he got screwed out of an experience there and thus I was unhappy about that. THE FOOD: If I'm being honest, it was just okay. That's about it. I can't say the food was amazing or bad. It was just there, because we ate in the MDR every night, and also in the buffet during the day. I understand specialty dining is better, but I'm already paying a large amount of money just to cruise, I don't think I should have to pay extra to get good food too. I think we should pay extra to get EXCELLENT food. I'm fine with that. I'm not fine with paying to get okay food and having to pay money to get good or better. I have been on Norwegian and Carnival and I would say Royal Caribbean is probably 2nd in terms of complimentary food behind Carnival and ahead of Norwegian. Again, this is about complimentary food only, we didn't do the specialty dining for a 3 night cruise. THE BARS: I spend most of my time drinking in the Promenade so I'll review those bars. The Bamboo room is nice and never very crowded with really unique drinks. I do wish they would turn up the lights a little in there, because it's honestly too dark in my mind to hang out there forever. The Barnacle and barrel is nice as well, not very crowded, and a good table setup that extends out into the promenade itself without getting you in the way of the crowds going by. Donald at the bar was very good and remembered my name and my drink. He also made sure we had table service when we moved from the bar to sit down. My only knock on the place is that some of the chairs can be a little small if you've got bigger hips. Just be away of that and choose the chairs without the arms. Playmakers was my go-to bar after the first night, and it was because of the bartenders and the TV selection. The British Open was going on, so I could watch the golf, along with other cool sports going on, while getting the full bar experience. My two bartenders were Sasa and Al, both from the Phillipines. Al was on his 5th contract, Sasa was on his 16th. They remembered my name, remember my favorite drink, and would give me new ones repeatedly without having to ask for my card information over and over. They just knew it, and had it down pat. They were friendly, asked me questions, and talked about their lives on board and back home. Great guys, and I feel like they were the highlight of my trip. COCO CAY: The island is crazy. It's a theme park in the Caribbean, which I've never seen before. I'd love to go back when I was feeling better, however I spent most of the day in Captain Jacks nursing myself back to life after my first two days of cruising. The people at Captain Jacks were amazing, and the place was probably the coolest spot I could find on the island. Jimmy the guitar player basically played requests all day. He's good and interacts with the crowd. Bar service is again phenomal. They bring you drinks and if you're at a table you barely have to get up except to use the restrooms, which are right there. It was the perfect relaxation spot while my friend went running around to the water park. OVERALL: Overall I go on Cruises for the 5 things I listed, and I give them all stars when I do a review. You either get a star or you don't. I gave this cruise 3 stars because it was a great cruise, but it fell short in two of the areas, which was the food and the cabin. That's okay though because I would take another 3 star cruise any day of the week, and while this was a great cruise, I think they can do some of these things better and it will be an excellent cruise. I suggest going and trying out the Mariner of the Seas to see what you think! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Long lines everywhere. Forever to get drinks at some bars. Room steward MIA.. Room service Non existent. TRIED 4 times. Once food never showed up Once received COLD horrible food. Twice received message that room service unavailable..even ... Read More
Long lines everywhere. Forever to get drinks at some bars. Room steward MIA.. Room service Non existent. TRIED 4 times. Once food never showed up Once received COLD horrible food. Twice received message that room service unavailable..even though ordered during "open" hours. We will not be booking any further MEGA ships. We did the same things and had as much fun as we have on smaller less expensive ships. It's impossible for the crew and ship to keep up with that volume of people!! Staff are overworked and stressed out. Not all. There were some that were great. Putra and Mark at pool bar were great..even though Putra was in the aqua show in addition to bartending 12 hours at pool bar. He would leave do the show and come back to bartend. ???? Staff spread toooo thin!! We still had a fabulous cruise. Ports were amazing !! Too big is a thing!!! Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
My wife and I have been on many cruises including the Oasis and Allure of Royal Caribbean. Of all the cruises we have taken this one was our biggest disappointment. The entertainment is the highlight of this ship. I do not think any other ... Read More
My wife and I have been on many cruises including the Oasis and Allure of Royal Caribbean. Of all the cruises we have taken this one was our biggest disappointment. The entertainment is the highlight of this ship. I do not think any other cruise line does a better job. Make sure if you are considering booking that you book early. Many of the shows fill quickly, especially the comedy shows. The room although small was comfortable and the steward kept it neat and clean. The excursions were organized although a little high priced. I strongly recommend XPLOR in Mexico. A little high priced but a great time. The biggest disappointment was the food. The amount of choices have dropped dramatically. Many items repeated constantly. Quality was average. We ate mostly at the buffet. The first morning it took us forever to find a seat and the line was so long we decided we would skip breakfast the rest of the cruise and go to an early lunch. The line was always long. Seating was usually difficult even though they sometimes closed off half the dining room. One night we went and it was so packed we decided to go to the show and then come back later. We got there a little after 9 and the buffet was closed! The enjoyment of a cruise is you eat when you want to. Never been on a cruise were they closed all free eating by 9! The pay to eat restaurant were all still open and doing good business, some being open till 3 in the morning. I think they are trying to force goers into pay to eat. We actually went to be hungry that night because we refused to pay more. Of all the cruised we have gone on we enjoyed this one the least. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
My son, daughter-in-law, two granddaughters, wife and I sailed on the Harmony of the Seas departing on June 9, 2019 returning on June 16, 2019. The itinerary was Perfect Day at Coco Cay, day at sea, St. Thomas, St. Maarten, and two ... Read More
My son, daughter-in-law, two granddaughters, wife and I sailed on the Harmony of the Seas departing on June 9, 2019 returning on June 16, 2019. The itinerary was Perfect Day at Coco Cay, day at sea, St. Thomas, St. Maarten, and two additional days at sea. Our staterooms were 7630 and 7632, adjoining Jr. Suites. Note that my wife and I are experienced cruisers with more than 20 cruises, most with Celebrity and Royal but with others as well. This cruise vacation is summarized below. We live in Orlando so getting to Port Canaveral is an easy drive. We left the house at 9:45 and arrived at the port about an hour later. I dropped off our bags passengers and parked in the onsite garage which was very convenient though a little pricey. Check-in was very quick as we used the Royal App and had all information on our cell phones. I purchased the digital photo package on-line prior to the cruise so we had numerous photos taken on boarding. The on-line price for the package was $249, onboard it was over $300 (although Royal had different promotions for it throughout the week). Our rooms were obviously not ready so we headed to Park Café for lunch and to make our home base until the rooms were opened up which occurred at 1:00 as advertised. While others were getting their lunch I headed up to Country Kitchen to make our dinner reservations for a party of 6. This was my first disappointment on the cruise. I asked for reservations at 6:00 each night but was informed the restaurant opens at 5:15 so I could have 5:15 or after 7:00. They told me that they only had two tables for 6 so that was my only option. After much haggling they gave me 5:45 for the first 3 nights but 5:15 for the remaining nights. I chose to chill and explain the situation to my son and daughter-in-law but they were not happy as 5:15 as it was way too early for them. 5:15 was too early for my wife and I as well for that matter. Getting two young children (5 & 23 months) and themselves ready by that time would significantly eat into their afternoons. In hindsight I should have bumped up my issue to a higher authority above the restaurant manager. This situation resulted in much stress each afternoon but we all coped the best we could. I am not sure why they couldn’t accommodate my request as the restaurant was half empty each night and they easily could have created a table for 6 as they did one night. After lunch we headed to staterooms and met our stateroom attendant. As always the rooms were very nice and spacious with lots of storage space. If within your budget I would highly recommend booking a Jr. Suite as it just makes the cruising experience a little more pleasant. We had the divider opened between our two rooms making it essentially a two room suite. The grandchildren enjoyed being able to come over at will. Our stateroom attendant was friendly and did a great job doing his job. I would say he exceeded my expectations for service. Day two was supposed to be our Perfect Day at Coco Cay. It turned out to be anything but perfect. I bought tickets to the Thrill Water Park for all (the 23 month old was free) paying a little over $300 on-line prior to the cruise. I did my research and both my son and I clearly understood the restrictions for the 5 year old and what she could ride. However once inside the park what we thought the 5 year old could ride she could not even though she was well over the lower height restriction. The problem, we did not put a life preserver on her, our bad. But the life guards did not advise or direct us to do so either. They simply said she could not ride. Also for the adults the wait times on the rides were anywhere from 1 to 2 hours. They also closed the rides for 2+ hours do to lightening in the area (10 mile radius) although it never rained on site. Bottom line is that in a best case you could get maybe 5 rides in. In our case after taking time out for lunch and letting the kids play in the areas outside the water park none of the adults rode any of the thrill rides. The next day I received a message asking me to review the Perfect Day at Coco Cay and I gave it a very negative review. Subsequently I was contacted by guest services to clarify my review and in that conversation I requested compensation for my dissatisfaction. At first they offered 25% refund, which they were refunding everyone because of the weather closing, but I was adamant that I received zero value for my money. After two additional conversations with guest services and the manager of shore excursions they refunded me my total amount. I am happy that Royal eventually took my complaint seriously and did what I believe is right but I am disappointed that it took so long to do so. Bottom line is make sure you are willing to wait on long lines and maybe get only a few rides in. Also if you have a young ones over 40 inches but not yet 48 inches put a life vest on them (note though I only saw a 48 inch height gauges no 40 inch gauges). Also RCL should figure out how to accommodate chaperones who do not ride on the attractions such as older grandparents, why charge someone who is not using the facility. Will I use the facility again, maybe, but at least I will go in with full knowledge that I am just giving Royal my money with little value in return. Other ports were essentially noneventful. Getting off and boarding at each was easy and quick. We didn’t take any tours and simply made them beach days. In St. Thomas we took a taxi to Emerald beach which worked well for us. In St. Maarten we took the water taxi to town and rented chairs and beach umbrellas. We also had a great lunch in town in a restaurant along the boardwalk. The water taxi worked out well so I would recommend it if it works into your plans. On previous cruises to St. Maarten we simply walked into town which is an easy walk. Our dining experience onboard was mixed. We only used Windjammer for breakfast and lunch a few times. I was very disappointed in the breakfast served there. In the past on Harmony you could get eggs benedict there but not on this cruise. Also in the past you could get omelets made to order, no more, only pre made omelets. Pancakes and waffles were also pre made and were cold and dried out. You could get fried eggs to order though. Lunch in Windjammer was a little better. Windjammer food quality and choices though are simply declining. We went to American Icon twice for breakfast and it was ok but not great. I ordered eggs benedict and the eggs were over cooked and the Hollandaise Sause was dried out on top. Second time I simply ordered eggs over medium and they came out as you would expect. They also had a very good French toast that I enjoyed. In short I would say everyone in our party enjoyed their breakfasts in American Icon. The best breakfasts we had on the ship however was at Johnny Rockets, killer omelets with nice country fried potatoes in a nice location on the ship. Also Johnny Rockets had plenty of seating and service was quick and friendly. We also used Mini Bites a few times for lunch and snacks and were pleased with the offerings there. We ate dinner the second night of the cruise in Wonderland as my wife and I enjoyed it on our last cruise on Harmony. No so much this time. We simply remember the dining experience being much better. The meal was ok but nothing to write home about. We used a specialty dining coupon we had from our TA and in retrospect we should have eaten at Park 150, we have never been disappointed there. All other dinners were in Coastal Kitchen. The reservation times aside the staff there was spectacular. They honored our every request including asking for several items from the MDR. They were great with the children. The food offerings there however were not as good as I remember it on past cruises. One of the reasons I book a Jr. Suite is to dine in Coastal Kitchen. In the past we found it better than any specialty restaurant on the ship, but not on this sailing. We found the menu selections ordinary, nothing special. The head chef came by each evening and one night I asked him if the menu was his or Miami’s, he said Miami. Too bad, I think in the past the chef may have been given more flexibility to use their creativity in creating dishes. The food was not bad, just not the exceptional dining experience I have become accustomed to. One big mistake serve what is on the menu, one night they said they had Pear Salad but when it was served it was apple salad with a different dressing. The server should have known that the Pear salad was not available. No killer nightly dessert either, just ho-hum. As with Windjammer dinner in Country Kitchen appears to be on the decline, at least on this ship. The nightly entertainment was enjoyable. We have been on Harmony in the last 18 months so the shows have not changed. Make sure you make reservations online well in advance on line, we did and it worked out great. Although we enjoyed the shows we look forward to RCL rolling out some new shows on Harmony. I found the musicians on this cruise to be outstanding, better than I have been accustomed too. The two comedians onboard Nery Saenz and Heath Harmison were fantastic, very funny guys. The Headliner Showtime act, Tribute Band, Private Stock, was ok but not a great show although many in the audience enjoyed them more than I. Another new item I did not appreciate was the large number of reserved seats for suites (Grand and above), Diamond Plus (not there yet, maybe never) and Pinnacle as well as seats for those that purchased The Key. It used to be that the first couple of rows were reserved for Suite guests, now 2/3 of the seats in the center section are reserved for the above, very disturbing. It simply means getting in line early at the front so you can run to get your seats when the doors open. This simply creates more stress and watch watching during dinner. Guess it is just another indication of the cruise line going back to the class system; regular paying customers are not as appreciated as they were in the recent past. Daytime activities onboard were very good and what have become accustomed to. Note however a change in the procedures on the Flow Rider. My son is a very experienced Flow Rider having sailed on Freedom, Independence and Harmony. He signed the waiver, got his wrist band and was in line for about 30 minutes for the standup Flow Rider when the attendant told him he needed to ride the knee board Flow Rider first and get a different colored wrist band. So this cost him about an hour of wasted time in total. He should have been advised of the change in procedure when he signed the waiver. He complained and they began making announcements to this requirement, it would have been nice if they were making announcements prior to his complaint. Apparently this is a new procedure implemented a few months back, not sure what its purpose it has. I do not like writing what is mostly a negative review, particularly since my past sailings on RCCL have been outstanding. So what is my take away, will I sail with Royal again, sail on Harmony again? Probably yes to both depending on value and the itinerary. As I live in Orlando I will likely sail on whichever Oasis class ship Royal is sailing from Port Canaveral, not sure it is worth the drive to Fort Lauderdale or Miami for me. But given the value of the cruise and itinerary driving south is always an option. Will probably only sail RCL though with grandchildren, for me Celebrity is still my go to cruise line and ships. But I will also be looking more closely at Princess as I have had good past experiences with them as well. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Already Booked?

Get to know who you’ll be sailing with

Find a Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click