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951 Royal Caribbean Transatlantic Cruise Reviews

Great Oasis Class ship. Experienced her for 12 days just before she goes to dry dock for amp. Cant wait to see her in 2021 from Galveston. The Allure overall had the best most consistent and good quality food of any RCCL ship we have ... Read More
Great Oasis Class ship. Experienced her for 12 days just before she goes to dry dock for amp. Cant wait to see her in 2021 from Galveston. The Allure overall had the best most consistent and good quality food of any RCCL ship we have been on. The Sabor Grill was amazing. Considering we were on one of the very last ships sailing, the crews dedication to keeping the ship disinfected was amazing. If it can be touched, it was sanitized throughout the day. Entertainment was outstanding including Mama Mia and especially Charlie Jourdan in the Bow & Stern Pub. Charlie was incredible, and he packed the place every evening he played. Amazing how organized Ft. Lauderdale embarkation was. Debarkation was just as organized. Loved doing the Muster Drill in the AquaTheater seating. Only hope when she is amped is they upgrade the slot machines in the Casino. Some were very old and uneventful. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
First transatlantic.great time, an excellent experience! There was plenty to do ( or not do). The Mama Mia production show was fantastic as were the other headliner shows. The Diamond Club was a bit overcrowded, but Royal Caribbean did ... Read More
First transatlantic.great time, an excellent experience! There was plenty to do ( or not do). The Mama Mia production show was fantastic as were the other headliner shows. The Diamond Club was a bit overcrowded, but Royal Caribbean did try to accommodate the best they could by expanding to other locations. Service in the diamond club lounge was excellent in trying to accommodate and meeting the demand. Service and wait staff around the ship in bars and restaurants was great. Due to the virus concerns it was obvious Royal Carribean was taking extensive procedures to disinfect and make sure that passengers felt confident while sailing that there would be no issues. You could not help but constantly see workers wiping down railings, walls, chairs, etc..above and beyond the standard cleaning that always take place. Sanitizers in front of every store and in many other locations around the ship. Will definitely plan another transatlantic. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Despite the mounting tension from the alarming ship news channels it was still an enjoyable TransAtlantic/Repostioning cruise: this ship has everything. Lots to do, lottsa of elbow room on the massive 220,000 ton Allure of the Seas: ... Read More
Despite the mounting tension from the alarming ship news channels it was still an enjoyable TransAtlantic/Repostioning cruise: this ship has everything. Lots to do, lottsa of elbow room on the massive 220,000 ton Allure of the Seas: climbing walls, putt-putt golf, a full park/arboretum, awesome entertainment (had a 2.5 hour Broadway-quality ‘Momma Mia’ production and several excellent singing/dancing & Cirque shows, one with 30-meter outdoor diving) even a indoor skating rink with shows too. And special kudos to our doting Deck 5 dining room waiter Satyajeet & assistant waiter Jeffery! Every cruise I bring an ample selection of crisp 10-/20-/50-/100-dollar bills for distribution to uniformly hard-working/cheerful/taking-care-of-us/haven’t-seen-their-families-in-6-months staffers the day before debarking (especially the bartenders). I guarantee they can utilize these paper trinkets better than I can during the current world-wide cruising suspension. I heard the shuttered cruise lines are offering their dozens of ships/staffs for mobile, temporary hospitals/quarantine usage. Heck, with WiFi/kitchens/laundries/libraries/sharp crews/spas/gyms/running track and their thousands of super-efficient, comfortable cabins, perhaps employ them immediately instead of funding/building temporary facilities stateside. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Terrible breakfast experience, really bad coffee. Activities a joke. Trivia twice in morning overlapped so could only play in one. Food cold, very poor service except at dinner. Two arrogant cocky young men did Trivia. Spoke with heavy ... Read More
Terrible breakfast experience, really bad coffee. Activities a joke. Trivia twice in morning overlapped so could only play in one. Food cold, very poor service except at dinner. Two arrogant cocky young men did Trivia. Spoke with heavy accent, could not understand them, answers wrong, some stupid questions. Overall bad experience. Times kept changing, locations changed. No entertainment one night. Cut most breakfast options on now shortened menu. Buffet in dining room cold, not fresh. No toast. Waited a long time for cold food. Could not swallow coffee. We called it the WAL-MART CRUISE. Cheap, second rate and obviously training all new people. I spoke with managers who appeared to be concerned and stepped in but the disorganized, poorly trained staff was just too much. Guest services have three answers about Diamond benefits that were totally incorrect. Waited two hrs for wheelchair assistance in Tampa. Crew drills so all crew could not man the wheelchairs. How stupid is that? Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Poor entertainment. Cruise director not great and daily activities were poor. Ship had new carpet but that is it. Breakfast in main dining room was SLOW and COLD when served. Lunch and dinner good in dining room. Room was an outside ... Read More
Poor entertainment. Cruise director not great and daily activities were poor. Ship had new carpet but that is it. Breakfast in main dining room was SLOW and COLD when served. Lunch and dinner good in dining room. Room was an outside (3546) the drawers were falling apart had to be fixed twice in 2 weeks. If you choose beds together you can hardly get around the beds without hitting yourself. No refrigerators in the room. Furniture was well worn and dirty (needs replaced). Water temperature had to be fixed several times due to not getting warm and pressure issues. It is an old ship but could be nice it RCCL puts some $$ into the ship. I am a Diamond Plus and have and will continue to cruise RCCL enough with this one cruise. Ports where good. COCO CAY was wonderful. Great job RCCL. I would not recommend this ship in the future. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This cruise was cut to 11 days due to bad weather on previous cruise. RCI did offer a price reduction - pro rata - or a full refund to be used towards a future cruise. Apparently full cash refunds were offered, but we did not know this at ... Read More
This cruise was cut to 11 days due to bad weather on previous cruise. RCI did offer a price reduction - pro rata - or a full refund to be used towards a future cruise. Apparently full cash refunds were offered, but we did not know this at the time. Anyway we decided to go despite the change which meant we only visited one Caribbean Island instead of four. Summary: barding was excellent and on time. Our stateroom was not well presented, dust visible, and locker doors not properly secured. Disappointing start. We chose My Time dining and we were not disappointed. The food quality was good and the staff were excellent. Casual dining in the windjammer was more than adequate. We felt there was not a great deal of daytime activity, other than quizzes and hard sell presentations at the spa The evening entertainment was average. There were no lecture sessions to attend. All in all a big disappointment and would make us think twice about using RCI in the future. One final point; we did not receive a cruise review form so could not give our views. After many requests we go a very brief form which was a waste of time. We wanted more than anything to rate the excellence of the staff - but the rest left much to be desired. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This review isn't so much about the ship. More about the way Royal Caribbean went about showing how little they care about their British customers. We found out a few days before leaving that this trip was going to be cut short by ... Read More
This review isn't so much about the ship. More about the way Royal Caribbean went about showing how little they care about their British customers. We found out a few days before leaving that this trip was going to be cut short by 3 days, supposedly because of bad weather. A strange excuse because when you book a cruise, you are told that these ships are so large that they can handle any weather situation. That coupled with the fact that I am aware the Explorer has had rudder problems in the past, made most of us suspicious that the weather was really to blame for the itinerary change. However , having decided to the the cruise anyway despite Royals poor compensation package ( only $16 per person port fees refunded for replacing four ports with one - who are they kidding ? ) we expected that they would perhaps go the extra bit and put on a good cruise for us. Sadly not !. Considering this was an 11 night trip with only one stop, they could have done much better to keep us entertained on the many sea days The entertainment was very poor. Perhaps this was because the headliner acts that were meant to be on board didn't actually turn up due to the change of ports. Suffice to say that apart from the Beatles tribute band, the rest of the headliners were grim. More suited to a Butlins holiday camp As for the on board entertainment team, this was the worst I have ever came across. The cruise director , Mike ( even after 11 days cruising I still don't know his surname ) didn't interact with passengers at all. He even stood behind the podium during the love and marriage show he hosted. Clearly not a people person. For a ship full of Brits, why didn't they choose a more suitable cruise director such as Hello Clo, Joff Eaton or Luke Arrowsmith. Compared to them, this guy was a disgrace. His activities manager wasn't much better. The majority of activities were trivia. OK if it is hosted by someone who can talk english or someone who is remotely interested. When we questioned the guys lack of motivation or interest during the Battle of the sexes quiz, his reply was that he didn't care what we thought as his contract was up at the end of the cruise. And as many of their quiz questions were so way out, it completely took the fun out of it. We saw people winning a quiz with as little as 6 correct out of 20. As for night time entertainment, can someone please tell Royal that a ship full of people mostly over 50 aren't really interested in a Rock Britannia street party at 10:45pm. We had a promenade room. When I looked out and saw only a handful of people standing watching below, I felt quite embarrassed for the staff having to jump about in costumes to 1970's rock tunes, especially the old Italian guy who clearly was extremely uncomfortable and out of place. Two days before reaching Miami, the casino took away the European Roulette table. When I asked why he said they were getting ready for the US market. I replied that it was two days before we reached Miami and asked why they couldn't wait & remove it then. His response was this " You don't complain when we pick up your luggage from your stateroom ". I responded that I wasn't complaining. I was merely asking a simple question but didn't expect such a stupid & condescending answer. Needless to say I didn't go back to the casino. So to summarise, I don't believe Royal covered themselves in glory on this one and have now probably lost a great deal of UK customers. However when you see the reduction in the number of cruises leaving from the UK next year and going forward, I don't think they really care. not exactly in summary, Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I saw this cruise on TV Cruise 1st channel and booked for the transatlantic voyage to the Caribbean. The fact that it was due to visit Islands that I had previously been to in my teens when I was a young seafarer sailing on cargo ships, ... Read More
I saw this cruise on TV Cruise 1st channel and booked for the transatlantic voyage to the Caribbean. The fact that it was due to visit Islands that I had previously been to in my teens when I was a young seafarer sailing on cargo ships, before everything went in containers, it was to be a nostalgic voyage as well as my first cruise. Needless to say myself and travel partner arrived at Manchester coach station on the 5th Nov 2019 and found we were the only ones there waiting for a coach to Southampton. We where both extremely worried as no place was open to phone and find out what had happened. Maybe you will call us stupid but I don't use emails very much and that is the reason for us showing up on the wrong day. Cruise 1st had sent one email to tell me about the cancellation and rescheduling of the itinerary. I was asked if I wished to cancel and I would have but my travel buddy was all set to go on holiday and travel across the ocean for the 1st time so I couldn't say no. I don't believe the weather and passenger comfort had anything to do with the changes as when we did eventually sail from Southampton the weather was very bad and lots of passengers including my partner were seasick. The ship rarely went above 18/19 knots so could have gone faster and had enough time to visit the missing islands. Also having to pay for internet access , soft drinks and (special) coffee in a drinks package and even bottled water from the cabin steward is a bit much. It's not as though this Cruise Line is struggling. I was given some paltry compensation but it never made up for missing out on visiting 4 Caribbean Islands. I did have a lot more to say about this ship and the company who run it but as I am the only other person who seems to have reviewed this bad experience maybe it is best to just forget it and promise myself to never bother with Royal Caribbean and their very old ship again. Just another thing ! I always expected to be served lobster at some time whilst on a cruise. If it was served I definitely missed it or maybe it was meant to be served on the day about 1000 people on board had sea sickness . So much for passenger comfort. I really do have to say a really big THANK YOU to the service staff especially the cabin stewards who work so hard to clean and make up so many cabins each day and to all the staff I had personal interactions with Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We chose this cruise because of transatlantic Miami destination with four stops in Caribbean islands. One week before departure we were informed that the cruise would depart 3 days later than planned because of storm weather at its ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of transatlantic Miami destination with four stops in Caribbean islands. One week before departure we were informed that the cruise would depart 3 days later than planned because of storm weather at its position then. Three of the island stops were thus canceled. We had the opportunity to cancel and be reimbursed of change our travel plans to Southampton from Barcelona (nears airport to our home). We were also informed that our cabin would not be a "guaranteed junior suite" but a balcony cabin at same price. Several phone calls resulted in our obtaining what we paid for with written reservation : a junior suite 7692 We were not reimbursed for cancelations of two prepaid hotel reservations , one night in Barcelona (before flight to Gatwick) and one in Southampton. This added extra unexpected expenses. The ship was in excellent condition and cleanliness. The restaurant gave excellent service and a wide choice on the menu. One minus there : price of wines + gratuities !!!! Entertainment on the long seaways was not entirely to our taste. But we give high marks to the ice-dance show, the Beatles imitators and the magician/pickpocket. Passengers were 95% Senior Brits. Disembarkation was extraordinarily well organised. And fast !! Within one hour after waiting in dining room, we were in line at the airport for car-rental. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
sorry to say the service and food at the main dining room was very very poor the daily activities seemed for nursery tots.The music and singers around the ship were made for nursing home entertainment.They sang and played the same ... Read More
sorry to say the service and food at the main dining room was very very poor the daily activities seemed for nursery tots.The music and singers around the ship were made for nursing home entertainment.They sang and played the same things all through the crossing. Now to say that the royal caribbean dancers and orchestra were very good as always.Their shows were very good. The movie theater is very poorly kept most of the seats are broken.The food at the windjammer was much better and for the first time in our 25th cruise we never went back to the dining room,The maître d was very rude to us made us feel very uncomfortable so with that and being the food and service was so poor we decided not to return during our crossing.This is what we saw and felt I am sure not everyone felt this way though the majority if people I spoke to on board were complaining about the food ,service and extreme bordom, Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Embarking and disembarking on this ship were very well organized and went quickly. The ports of call on this trip were excellent. We got to stay overnight in Lisbon, Portugal which gave extra time to see the area. It was our first time ... Read More
Embarking and disembarking on this ship were very well organized and went quickly. The ports of call on this trip were excellent. We got to stay overnight in Lisbon, Portugal which gave extra time to see the area. It was our first time in all of the ports except Barcelona where we departed from. Cartagena felt very safe to walk around to all of the main historic sites which were not far from the dock Malaga and Seville were excellent stops. One of the most beautiful scenic stops was Ponta Delgada in the Azores. This is a must see, and we were fortunate to have good weather. This is a very nice size ship, one of our favorite with a lot of windows including glass elevators facing the ocean. All of the crew that we interacted with were very friendly. The food was very good and we got to experience Chops and Giovanni's which were both top shelf. The entertainment on this trip were the best ever; we are still talking about it and listening to the CD's that we bought on board. Jimmy Hopper a singer/entertainer from Vegas, The Barricade Boys who had the most incredible harmony and Mary-Jess, an incredibly talented young singer. I would make this exact trip again in order to see more things in the ports. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We chose this cruise because of the stops in Iceland and Greenland, so the other ports were a bonus. The ports were good overall, but I would look carefully at the excursions offered from the cruise line and investigate ones on your own. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the stops in Iceland and Greenland, so the other ports were a bonus. The ports were good overall, but I would look carefully at the excursions offered from the cruise line and investigate ones on your own. We used Saga tours for tours in Iceland and Greenland. They did a good job overall, they were with small groups and we enjoyed that. The only problem is make sure if you use them in Greenland for a trip to the glacier that you get a guarantee of size of boat, that it is covered for ALL passengers, and that there are accommodations that allow for viewing for all passengers. We didn't, and they tried sending 4 large people in a boat that was meant for two people inside the "cabin area - the pilot and one other) with the rest of everyone outside. When is it drizzly weather being stuffed under the console was not a pleasant experience - we had to have the pilot return to port as we feared someone was going to crack their head open on the console when the pilot picked up speed. Regarding the shore excursions with Royal Caribbean, they were okay. They didn't offer anything outstanding but they weren't awful either. They did have a big problem in getting people off the ship when we tendered in Shetland, Scotland. Our private tour was delayed two hours because of it, we were unable to get to the southern part of the island as a result. The big thing to watch for is cabin location. We weren't able to self select the cabin, and were assigned 3610 - average size with a nice sized window. The major PROBLEM was it is over the engines - we had a constant hum to whine the entire trip. You could tell how fast the ship was going by the sound of the engines. For two nights there was a horrible sound that reminding me of an anchor being pulled up, it clanked and rolled. The food is average, but the waitresses and waiters were top notch. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
It was our 50th anniversary and we thought a repositioning cruise would be a great experience. On previous cruises we have always eaten in the dining room for all our meals. We found the food to be cold. My omelets were incomplete, only ... Read More
It was our 50th anniversary and we thought a repositioning cruise would be a great experience. On previous cruises we have always eaten in the dining room for all our meals. We found the food to be cold. My omelets were incomplete, only half of my omelette had filling in it. We tried it again when we gave our review on the ship and they asked us to try breakfast again. The food was still cold. The windjammers breakfast was much better. We only ate dinner in the evening. We had great table mates and enjoyed there company. The food was just adequate. Some nights I couldn't find something to eat. When my husband ordered beef bourquinion he had 3 small chunks of beef. In the Centrum the chairs were ripped. My husband ordered an anniversary surprise for me and only half of what was supposed to come was missing. They did not have it aboard the ship. Our daily compass had incorrect information On the front it said casual dining and in the center it stated formal attire. Half the guests showed up formal and half casual. The activities schedule was the same activities at the same time. The activities were very one note. If you had early dining you missed activities. They also had last minute changes in the shows. Our tour guide on one of the cruises left passengers behind and we missed more than half of our tour Thank goodness one of the onboard next cruise employee was with us. She was appalled that we were left behind with the employee. They only refunded half of our tour money because they said we saw half of tour. The eating outside the windjammer was stained and dirty. Alot of chipped paint was noticed. We have been on Royal Caribbean ships before and enjoyed them. We did not enjoy the Brilliance of the Sea and would not recommend this ship and this experience left a bad impression for us to cruise again with Royal Caribbean. In the past we always enjoyed our experience. This cruise was for a special occasion and it spoiled our experience. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We love long cruises with lots of sea days and this cruise did not disappoint. We sailed from Tampa Bay to Amsterdam, seeing ports that we had yet to visit. The 8 sea days to begin the cruise were a wonderful way to really relax and kick ... Read More
We love long cruises with lots of sea days and this cruise did not disappoint. We sailed from Tampa Bay to Amsterdam, seeing ports that we had yet to visit. The 8 sea days to begin the cruise were a wonderful way to really relax and kick off our month long vacation. We have sailed a lot on RCI, have attained Diamond Plus status, and really do like the Radiance Class ships in Royal's fleet. There were LOTS of experienced cruises on this sailing as over 900 passengers of the 2000 on board were either Diamond or Diamond Plus level on RCI. Rather than wait until the cruise to deal with this large number of elite members, Royal communicated with us weeks before the cruise to let us know that they were going to use the Colony Club as their evening venue for the Diamond lounge event. Royal did a great job organizing and delivering the service that elite cruisers want. Cudos to RCI for making what could have been a difficult situation work smoothly. Our Balcony Cabin on Deck 9 was in great shape and our room steward was attentive, friendly and engaging in our many conversations with him. In fact, both my wife and I found the entire staff (our waiter Mary, our assistant waiter and most other staff we interacted with) went out of their way to be both friendly and accommodating to our needs. Service could not have been better throughout the 15 day cruise. The entertainment was also diverse and well presented. The RCI singers and dancers were as good as any group we have seen on our many cruises and the cruise director was engaged and seemed to really care about the quality of the performances. The food was varied, presented well and seemed a bit better than some of our other cruises. We went to Chops Grill twice on the cruise and it did not disappoint. RCI delivered a great experience over the two weeks of the cruise from embarkation to getting off the ship (It took us less than 1/2 hour to walk off, get our luggage and clear customs in Amsterdam!) Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
This was our third crossing and thoroughly enjoyed the Royal Caribbean Brilliance of the Sea conveniences as well as the fantastic attitude of the ship's staff. We sailed form Tampa to Ireland and Belgium and ended in Amsterdam. We ... Read More
This was our third crossing and thoroughly enjoyed the Royal Caribbean Brilliance of the Sea conveniences as well as the fantastic attitude of the ship's staff. We sailed form Tampa to Ireland and Belgium and ended in Amsterdam. We stayed on the ship back to back on the Baltic cruise visiting Denmark, Sweden, Estonia, Finland, Russia and Amsterdam. Total of 28 days. The Atlantic crossing was dampened by the overcast and cool weather however the Baltic region temperatures were comfortable for May. One of our daily favorite times is the My Time dining option sharing a table with others and having world topics as conversation. We bid on a Jr Suite for the second leg of the cruise which made that part very comfortable. Having a walk in closet and approx 300sf with chairs and a couch, the area was perfect for relaxing. We achieved our Dimond Plus status and are looking forward to our next cruise in March out of Dubai. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
It pains us to say that this was the worst cruise experience encountered and we have used 5 cruise lines and are Diamond Members with RCCL. Thr cruise was meant to be special for us but was simply a disappointment from day one which ... Read More
It pains us to say that this was the worst cruise experience encountered and we have used 5 cruise lines and are Diamond Members with RCCL. Thr cruise was meant to be special for us but was simply a disappointment from day one which then just got worse. The ship looks fine from outside and a joy to look at. Day one emabarkation was excellent, however and accident on day one due to the poor handling of equipment of staff on borad injured my wife and myself. The cruise after this then got worse. The room is dated and needs a make over, curtains do not cover length of balcony window and therefore light penetrates early waking you up. The curtaind are hanging on threads and the blackout broken in so many places that anyone else would have replaced. The cabin steward was not very friendly and had to be reminded to fill up on basics. Main dining room was quite good and the best service in years thatnks to Jean and Allan on floor 4. The food was hit and miss with some really good and others mediocre. That said this was big improvement on past cruises. The Windjammer is as normal busy at certain times, but if avoided then there is plenty of room. The food was better than on normal european cruises but often hot food was cold. We never went hungry and there was plenty of choice. Annoying issue is ice cream. A staff member rolls a cart along the whole area, with absolutely no chance of serving people at the right ime for them, not his fault but is RCCLs fault. The shows in the main theatre were excellent to very poor. We liked Once Upon A Time, though we had seen it before. We liked Invitation To Dance performed with the cast from Grease, though we had seen that before. We also loved Grease though we had seen that on Harmony, the show still retained the magic. The only Ice Show was Freeze Frame which although we had seen before, still enjoyed it. RCCL need to bring in new shows and have two ice shows on a two week cruise. The support guest stars were excellent (David Copperfield) but others we walked out on, one being a violinist and the other a magician. We never walk out on a show, so this says it all. Diamond Lounge was packed due to volume of Diamond members, however we did not really use in the night due to the noise. You could not hear a conversation. In the day it was also manic due to the poor arrangement. The filter coffee machine is place right by the door effectively causing rael conjestion wehen entering, leaving or waiting to get yoursef a coffee. It then broke down for a few days, very poor. Boleros bar on deck 4 was fine for most of the cruise except the noise when music started, which spoiled any conversation. Wilbert was a great bar tender and remembered us every time. Howvere Boleros turned into a very cold area in the latter days of the cruise due to doors being opened. We could not sit there and other guests wore coats. The SPA and Rides added were not used by us due to the accident already suffered so we cannot evaluate. the ship was clean and orderly but we did notice that staff members would push trolleys towards you instead of waiting for us to pass which is unusual on RCCL. The staff were also very flat compared to RCCL normal cruises. Two issues really irritated us, the noise in the bars was excessive with music blasting out stopping conversation and the excessive charges for drinks. Bacardi $9.99 Coke $3-4, Sevice Charge 18% on top of this. Te cruise across the Atlantic was boring except for making new fantastic friends, Iain, Margaret, Carol, Shelly, Stan and Elizabeth. The ship coud have docked at the Azores to break up 8 days at sea, Would we cross the Atlantic agan, Never. Would we use RCCL again, very much in doubt as other lines are now better. A very disapponting cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We wanted to get across the Atlantic without flying. This ship has exceeded our expectations. I love that even though they refurbished it, they have preserved the deck where you can walk around the whole ship outside and the stream/sauna ... Read More
We wanted to get across the Atlantic without flying. This ship has exceeded our expectations. I love that even though they refurbished it, they have preserved the deck where you can walk around the whole ship outside and the stream/sauna changing room in the fitness center is still open to everyone. It doesn’t feel like the money grab that some do. The food has been consistently excellent, better than we expected, and the crew is always friendly and helpful. From what I have read about the Edge, which I never intend to cruise on, on this ship if you’re not in a suite you are not made to feel like a second class citizen. You have access to the bow and the balconies are still wonderful to step out on when you want to. Good for RCCL for keeping the good stuff and for their generous package of perks for frequent cruisers. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We recently booked a back to back cruise on Rhapsody of the Seas. The first segment was transatlantic, Tampa FL to Barcelona. The second from Barcelona to Venice. In fact, these were really two separate cruises. Segment 1 - The ... Read More
We recently booked a back to back cruise on Rhapsody of the Seas. The first segment was transatlantic, Tampa FL to Barcelona. The second from Barcelona to Venice. In fact, these were really two separate cruises. Segment 1 - The Tampa-Barcelona leg of the cruise started out extremely well. Boarding in Tampa was a breeze and we were on board and having lunch in no time. The sea days were very pleasant. The food in the Windjammer cafeteria was varied and quite acceptable while the food in the main Dining Room was excellent. The menu included Prime Rib (more than once) and Rack of Lamb, Service was also excellent. RCCL had made a mistake, assigning us early dining time instead of late but that was easily corrected. Our cabin was quite small and, like the rest of the ship somewhat dated. It did not even have a mini-bar or refrigerator. Storage space was likewise quite limited but we made do. Our cabin steward was an old pro and handled every detail without having to be asked. In short, this first segment of the cruise went by too fast Segment 2 - This second part was so diffferent as to almost have been on another ship. Because RCCL had made a mistake with our dining time before I made a point of contacting them before the end of segment 1 to make sure that everything was as it should be for the second segment. I was assured that everything was taken care of. On the day of "checking in again" in Barcelona I discovered that the same error had been made in our dining arrangements. I immediately contacted Guest Services and was assured that the problem had been corrected. When we proceeded to the Dining Room that evening we found that the D.R. staff had no idea about the change. Finally the Head Waiter took us to an unoccupied table, where we sat and waited. And waited. And waited. Finally at 9:15 a waiter appeared, apologized for the delay, left us a glass of water and took our order. Then we waited. And waited. And waited. Finally at 10:00 we got up and left, explaining to the Maitre the problem with the service and requesting a new table. Finally the next night we started getting normal service. I can only assume that our first waiter felt 'put upon' by being assigned another (our) table and decided to let us know. In any event, this put a pall on the remainder of the cruise. Additionally,a few nights later the air conditioning in the ceiling decided to leak water on both our nightstands at 10:30 in the evening. Fortunately the crew was able to fix the problem in about an hour. During the entire second part of the cruise there seemed to be a marked tendency on the part of the crew to be less friendly and less helpful than during the transatlantic segment. I will not book on Rhapsody of the Seas again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
This was our first cruise on Royal Caribbean--having been on Holland America (3-star Mariners), NCL, Celebrity and Carnival. We liked the itinerary and the timing was right for us. We booked 21 nights which was sold as part of a package, ... Read More
This was our first cruise on Royal Caribbean--having been on Holland America (3-star Mariners), NCL, Celebrity and Carnival. We liked the itinerary and the timing was right for us. We booked 21 nights which was sold as part of a package, but turned out to be basically two cruises, back to back: A TransAtlantic out of Tampa, and then a week in the Mediterranean ending up in Venice. Another recent review called it "A Tale of Two Cruises" and I agree with that impression. We were interested to see that RCI treated it like two separate cruises although we've been on other b2b's before on other cruise lines that didn't do that. Anyway, I am aware that The Rhapsody is different from the mega ships in the RCI fleet, but it is similar in size to the other ships we've sailed with, and we basically liked the ship a lot. The public areas are beautiful, especially the "Centrum" and the theater. We really liked the layout of the Windjammer buffet (although it was often very crowded). But, O.K., here are my personal "complaints": Our ocean-view cabin was very small, with barely enough room to wedge our suitcases under the bed. We're used to small showers, having been on river cruises and traveling in an RV--but the shower is really, really small. And I missed having a nice place to relax and look out over the ocean. The best views are in the Windjammer at the front of the ship, but it isn't a place to "hang out". There are good views aft from the "Shall We Dance" lounge, but that space was underused except for the hundreds of "Diamond" level passengers who pretty much took it over. And I was really upset that the "Royal Crown Lounge" (a small but lovely venue overlooking the pool area) was pretty much off limits unless you were "Diamond Plus". In fact, the daily newsletter advertised a special price on Martinies in the Royal Crown Lounge, but we were informed that we were not allowed to sit down and enjoy our drinks there! Many activities were scheduled in the Schooner Bar which is a narrow, noisy hallway, basically. I just think there could be a better use of the various areas overall. We thought the food was very good, almost without exception. We didn't eat in any of the specialty restaurants, but enjoyed the bounty of the Windjammer and the choices in the main dining room. My husband had a New York Strip Steak that was tough, one night. But everything I ordered was delicious. They did a good job of providing a lot of interesting things to do during the TransAtlantic sea days--almost to the point that we had to make some time for ourselves to just sit and read. My only complaint about the activities was that I would have enjoyed a lecture or two about the history of the areas we were going to visit. The "port talks" they did have were mostly about ship excursions and/or shopping. In fact, there was very little advice or help forthcoming for those who just wanted to get off at the ports and explore. We attended all the evening entertainment in the theater and thought it was all outstanding. Unfortunately many of the shows were repeated in the third week, but it was so port intensive that we didn't really care. Everyone comments about how friendly and accommodating the staff and crew are, and I agree. How all those hardworking people stay so cheerful and nice is amazing. And they are so good about getting to know you and making everyone feel special. But (I guess I always have a "but") we did have a little problem with someone's inefficiency. As I said, the two portions of the cruise were treated as two different cruises. And at the end of the TransAtlantic in Barcelona we were required to get off the ship and be issued new "Seapass" cards. When we booked the cruises we had to pre-register for each one separately and give all the usual info about passport numbers, credit card numbers, etc. Well, as we got ready to disembark in Venice we got a call in our room informing us that we needed to come to the desk to settle our account!?? I was politely but firmly informed that security would not allow us off the ship until we paid our bill in cash! What!? The bill for the first two weeks had been taken care of automatically--this was just for the third week. So, we had to stand in line with all the disgruntled passengers complaining about overcharges, etc., until our turn when the guy at customers service poked the computer for about 10 minutes and then remarked casually that this had happened to a couple of other people who did back to backs. Someone just forgot to re-register our credit card. While I'm talking about money, I do need to mention that RCI obviously tries valiantly to offset the original low cost of the cruise with "nickle and diming" everything else. The "specialty restaurants" charge outrageously high prices, I think. And wine, and cocktails--crazy prices! They did have that happy hour martini special ($9) in the Viking Crown Lounge (Where the only place you could drink it was at the bar) and a 2-fer price on Margaritas in the Schooner bar. We had most fantastic weather. It was balmy and smooth sailing all across the Atlantic. The only rough seas were one night in the Mediterranean and we slept right through it. We enjoyed all the ports. We booked ship tours in both Canary Island stops and the one in La Palma was especially good ("North Shore") with an overview of the island including a stop in a beautiful interior rain forest, and a visit to a rum distillery that included a tasting. One of the highlights of the trip was sailing through the Straits of Gilbralter at dawn. Several hundred passengers stood on the upper decks looking at the lights of Africa on one side and the famous Rock of Gilbralter on the other with the beautiful sunrise behind it. We did our own thing in Malaga.We made our way through the historic old town center past the cathedral to the Alcazaba. We purchased tickets and wandered through the gardens and and rooms of that ancient Moorish fortress. It reminded me a lot of a smaller Alhambra. Then we walked up (and up) the hill behind it to see the "castle" behind it. By then it was hot and sunny, and we wore ourselves out climbing that path. When we got to the top we discovered that there was a bus stop there, and the "Hop On Hop Off" could have taken us to the top! Oh well. Beautiful views! In Barcelona we got a taxi to Sagrada Familia where we had bought tour tickets on line to see the inside. Then we taxied back to Los Ramblas where we strolled down with all the crowds, and then detoured off into the Gothic quarter we had a light lunch at at sidewalk cafe. After Barcelona the whole ship had a different feel after the leisurely trip across the ocean. A lot of the "retirees" disembarked, and there were many more young people and family groups. And we had a different port every day. In Cannes we once again "did our own thing". We jumped on the little tourist train loading up right at the pier and got a good look at the seaside boulevard and all the beautiful yachts on the one side and fancy hotels on the other. We've been to Rome before, so we opted to take the only ship tour doing something different out of Civitavecchia: a visit to an olive farm in Tuscany. It was a pleasant bus ride through the countryside with a visit to the sleep mountaintop village of Tuscania before a light snack of bruschetta with various flavored olive oils as well as a glass of wine at the olive farm. Our last ship tour was to the ancient Roman city of Herculaneum which was buried in the same volcanic eruption as nearby Pompeii. Fascinating. In Catania, Sicily we looked out our cabin window to see Mt. Etna all covered with snow! We later learned how unusual it is to have snow on Mt. Etna in May. Gorgeous! Unfortunately we didn't get pictures because clouds rolled in and Mt. Etna disappeared. We took a smaller group tour arranged through our Cruise Critic roll call. It was a beautiful day making our way up to the little resort town of Taormina after a harrowing drive up switch-backs to the mountain medieval village of Castelmola. Amazing views! And we also did a Cruise Critic tour to Krka National Park in Croatia. On the way back to the ship our guide gave us a quick visit to Zadar and their "sea organ". This review is getting too long to gush on and on about the beauty of Krka--all the waterfalls and rivers and emerald pools. Truly a beautiful spot. And I also don't want to do a whole separate review of our time in Venice where we disembarked and spend two wonderful (although rainy) days. All in all it was another great cruise--small criticisms notwithstanding. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
This was our first trans-Atlantic cruise so we were very excited and a little nervous. We enjoyed every minute of the trip! The staff was attentive and very friendly. The food was way above average. The fellow passengers were lovely ... Read More
This was our first trans-Atlantic cruise so we were very excited and a little nervous. We enjoyed every minute of the trip! The staff was attentive and very friendly. The food was way above average. The fellow passengers were lovely people. And most important, the seas were calm throughout the journey! As vast majority of our fellow travelers were seasoned cruisers and I heard that about 80% had diamond status or above with RCCL. We have already signed up for another TA next May. The shows were just ok, but the bands were awesome! Kinetic band always entertained the audience and played great dance music. We had an interior cabin which was small as we expected, but we spent very little time there. The fitness center is also sort of small and limited. We selected my time dining for dinner and had wonderful service and great meals. It was a wonderful cruise across the deep blue sea! Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Chose this cruise for its ports. Entertainment was good the first 10 days, but how many times can you listen to an island band play same songs night after night while making up words. Also headliner shows were too loud and not very ... Read More
Chose this cruise for its ports. Entertainment was good the first 10 days, but how many times can you listen to an island band play same songs night after night while making up words. Also headliner shows were too loud and not very good. One night was cruise director singing songs from early 1900, and a lot of people got up and left' Food was good, except for spare ribs in MDR. Couldn't even cut them off the bone. Wouldn't have served them to guests at my house. Windjammer food was good, but only thing hot was the soups. I like my food hot not tepid. Turn up the heat lamps. Shows in centrum were also very loud. Loud doesn't make it good. A lot of times you couldn't understand what they were saying. Ship was in good shape for its age, and staff was friendly. We had an ocean room cabin and it is just like any cabin on any other ship. We don't spend a lot of time in cabin, so we aren't hung up on cabin type. This is my opinion, and I am not trying to pursuade any one to choose this ship or not. I have never been on a bad cruise, even when we missed 2 days in Israel, or when we went around 2 hurricanes. We just enjoyed the new adventure. My take is we are all different in our expectations, God made us that way for a purpose, so get on board and enjoy the ride, Its a vacation, not a status. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We love to travel on Royal Caribbean and made that decision based on the quality of the rooms, crew, on board amenities, and the food. Now, we know that even on the same cruise lines, the food varies from ship to ship and chef to chef. ... Read More
We love to travel on Royal Caribbean and made that decision based on the quality of the rooms, crew, on board amenities, and the food. Now, we know that even on the same cruise lines, the food varies from ship to ship and chef to chef. But this is our second voyage on Serenade of the Seas and the food on both voyages was the best of my dozen plus voyages on 4 cruise lines. Visitiging different sites in Europe via the onboard Shore Excursions was the goal of this voyage. All of the excursions were excellent, including one where several buses from various ships were held up at a day excursion destination due to a major traffic closure. This caused us to miss our reservation for dinner, but we were accommodated immediately with all dinner items available. Crew was gracious and concerned asking each of us as we boarded if they could do anything. The excursions to each of the port destinations in Europe were very informative, clean buses, and always on time. The Highlight excursion for us was Ireland where we traveled to Cork and enjoyed the best Irish Coffee we ever had in a wonderful Hotel overlooking the town and countryside. Our disembarkment port was Copenhagen, which I had visited many years ago on business and had fond memories of the beauty of the city and the outside cafes. We decided to spend an additional 3 days there before flying home. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Review of Vision of the Seas, Transatlantic Galveston to Barcelona, April 19th to May 6th 2019 – 17 nights. Overview: Amazing trip, great ship, superb crew. The whole trip was amazing with one major issue, which was the medical ... Read More
Review of Vision of the Seas, Transatlantic Galveston to Barcelona, April 19th to May 6th 2019 – 17 nights. Overview: Amazing trip, great ship, superb crew. The whole trip was amazing with one major issue, which was the medical staff/facilities and one minor issue, which was new sheets that were dirty (bloodstains) on the sofa bed, the new sheets they sent were also badly stained, so we requested them changed again. We are a family of 3 Diamond members, 50/44/3 (almost 4). This was our first Transatlantic. Background/In depth CABIN: We were in a Spacious Oceanview cabin, 7088. The cabin was midships, so little movement. The cabin was great, big enough for all 3 of us – and the toys, lots of storage space. It had full wall windows from knee height to ceiling, there was a “seat” running the full width of the cabin with amazing windows… (the deck 8 cabins above had floor to ceiling windows without the seat). These cabins are great for sitting watching the flying fish, whales and dolphins. This cabin is amazing, and will pick these it they are available again in the future. The only minor issue with these cabins is that they are close to the centrum, where all the major entertainment is held every night. There are doors from the corridor to the centrum that can be closed, and these reduce the noise by 90%... the cabin door also reduces the noise by about 90% on its own, so with both doors closed the cabin was silent, with only one closed the noise was very low…. Close them both for silence. FOOD/WAITSTAFF: Overall good (MDR) to Very Good (WJ), MDR: Waiter was OK, a bit standoffish and not very interactive with the table, Assistant Waiter was excellent. With the 3 year old, they looked after him, bringing him a fruit plate as we sat down. We changed that after a few days, as he ate the fruit before dinner, so he wasn’t eating too well, they kept the plate for when we asked for it. I have an allergy, so I made this clear to the staff on the first night. They brought the menu for the next night to the table for me to fill in with my request. We ate in the MDR about 8 of 17 days, with the remaining nights spent in the Windjammer. MDR Food was good overall, nothing really exceptional. My biggest bugbear was the vegetables… hardly cooked at all, all almost raw, at every meal. Had Breakfast in the MDR one day, food was OK, staff OK. After numerous cruises, decided to try breakfast, but truthfully, nothing too exciting, and I enjoyed the WJ better. LUNCH: Had lunch once in the MDR, Food was very good, service was great, however as it was a private lunch with the Captain, can’t compare with normal service. Windjammer, Staff were great, clearing tables very quickly, bringing drinks etc all the time. Food: there were the usual selections every day/meal, salads, meats, pizza, burgers, hotdogs etc, the selection rotated round a few times. Also there was a meat carvery every day. Food was generally very good. There were themed nights with stations set up as well as the usual selections. Dessert was a bit limited in selections, the items rotated round very quickly, with some days nothing that I wanted (my taste), as it was a 17 day cruise, the selections rotated through a few times. Breakfast, as usual, very good selection, plenty of food. With all meals in the WJ, we walked through the whole selection then found a seat, then took turns to select food. This was to ensure we saw everything on offer for the child to eat. Milk and Chocolate milk was available at all meals under the desserts counter so ask for it if you want it. Chef Royston in the WJ was great with our son, he always came out to see him and made sure he had enough food, even making special requests when he thought he needed more food. When he was Ill, Chef Royston went into the kitchens and cooked him a meal of his favourite things to ensure he ate something… it worked. Other eating places: PARK CAFÉ: we ate there a number of nights, for a snack. Quality very good, especially the 3 cheese panini, which was grilled…. Amazing, we had them every time we ate there. Cookies and fruit as well as pizza, nachos and other sandwiches available till late. ICE CREAM: 2 machines, available at some different times during the day. Nice Ice Cream, cones, but some limited times, all closed at 2130 to 1100… some additional times would be better. PHOTO PACKAGE: We had the “All Photo Package”, bought online before the cruise. The cost on board was about 30% more than we paid, with the USB another $64 on top of that. There were on average 3 stations set up each night, where they took at least 2 photos at each. We wanted some with just us, with us all, with Son on his own… as well as at every port at least 2 photos, meals, Formal, events etc. We walked off with over 2KG/4.4lbs in weight of photos…. At least 500, still not counted. The staff was amazing and if we asked for other unusual stuff, they would if possible. We had one with an amazing sunset on deck, we asked him to come do that, which he did on his break. ADVENTURE OCEAN: 0900 to 1200, 1400 to 1700, 1900 to 2200 sessions. Our son only went to one of the 3 sessions offered daily. He only went to about 6 in total. He was one of only 9 children on the ship, so when he went there were 7 staff just for him. We only wanted him to do one session per day when he wanted to, to keep him in the routine for school. He loved the time there, and even though there was a schedule printed out, they took the time to talk to him and basically did things that he was interested in doing rather than doing the scheduled activities. ENTERTAINMENT: With a 3 year old, our visits to the different entertainment venues was limited. On a TA the entertainment is more geared to adults that something a 3 year old would sit through. We decided what to do each day on what we thought he would like/sit through without causing disruption to others at each venue. We did not go to the theatre at all, so can’t comment on the shows. Centrum had a number of shows/events every night, we attended a number of these. Overall we had plenty to do every day, some days more than others. There was a lot of trivia on the trip, with some ongoing for at least 3 hours a day, it did seem like this was the new staple entertainment, with about 3 or 4 different sessions per day (I like trivia, but only took part in the progressive, and offered some assistance to friends when I could) PORTS: We did not do any ship excursions, but had our own plans at each port. No issues experienced as far as I know, there was one port where 5 people were delayed, but only by about 20 minutes. DIAMOND LOUNGE: The lounge was too small for the numbers, so they closed the Some Enchanted Evening Lounge for us each evening. Experience was good in there. Coffee maker was well serviced, and even with the numbers on board, I only saw it run out twice, and each time attention was very quick coming. I only drink coffee (allergic to alcohol), so I used that machine a lot. BENEFITS ON SEAPASS, we used the lounge every night, as well as the 3 drinks loaded onto the Sea Pass card. Casino free roll, the machine is tight, and in the past 2 cruises won nothing at all, so this time we won a raffle ticket…. I actually stayed up until 2300 on the last night to be there for the drawing…. For a T SHIRT… you would have thought they would have a decent prize. Very disappointed in that. Internet, see below in notes. % off RCCL merchandise, Used this in the shop, the attendant said it could be used over and over again, which was news to me… only used once though. Washing: Did the $10 off a $34 wash, it was on the day they offered it at $24.99 in the compass, and got charged $17.36 in total… the clothes came back not very clean, and not smelling washed, so not sure if that is the way they wash them, or just not a good service. NOTES: I have never seen a Captain stand on the dock wishing people a good day as they left the ship, But Captain Mike was there at a number of ports, talking to people and wishing them a good day. It was a nice touch. It was Easter on our sailing, and the number of children was extremely low, so we ended up with over 100 eggs and rabbits… All the crew kept giving our son eggs, so we ended the cruise giving them to the crew as we had so many. Internet: We had 2 free days as Diamond. We spread them out till the middle of the voyage for day 1. I opted to go for the upgrade, which cost $7.00 as the Diamond free portion paid for the rest. Speed was actually very good, it surprised me. Unfortunately, after 11 hours, the signal was lost. I reported it straight away (luckily)…. But as I said I picked the middle day and as we were in the exact middle of the Atlantic the majority of the ship lost internet for a number of hours. They logged the loss, and I was credited with another 12 hours at a later date after a few visits. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
I would like to commend the following crew members that made this cruise so enjoyable, especially Imade, our cabin steward who provided superior service; Oswin, a head waiter at the Aquarius dining room who went out of his way to ... Read More
I would like to commend the following crew members that made this cruise so enjoyable, especially Imade, our cabin steward who provided superior service; Oswin, a head waiter at the Aquarius dining room who went out of his way to accommodate our every request and ensure that our dining experience was first class. His personal attention carried over at the Windjammer during breakfast and lunch; Naik and Lucas, who were our waiters at the 5;30 dinner setting could not have done a better job. At the Windjammer, there were many occasions when we were served by and assisted by Ying Ying and Hsin-Hua whom we got to know quite well. All of these people seemed to love their job and provided outstanding service of which Royal Caribbean should be proud. The entertainment provided on this cruise was some the best that we have ever experienced. Of particular delight were the performances provided by classical artists. The entertainment directer did a great job. The ship itself was quite comfortable, but it was the personnel assigned to this ship that made this voyage so special. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Chose this cruise because of dates and thought we would try something new. Reviews were good. We travel Celebrity as a rule. Use TAs as transportation Extremely disappointed in this ship. Food was absolutely inedible. First ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of dates and thought we would try something new. Reviews were good. We travel Celebrity as a rule. Use TAs as transportation Extremely disappointed in this ship. Food was absolutely inedible. First night in Giovanni’s ordered filet medium well.. was medium rare and took 25 minutes for another. Too late. Tho the shrimp was good Chops Ok MDR service poor except for one evening. One night we sat for 20 minutes and finally asked for a server. Food poor. Buffet the same. Fresh Vegetables looking worse for wear within days of sailing. Jello for dessert! Public areas not clean. Restrooms dirty. Paper on floor. Men’s restroom not clean around toilets. We spoke with housekeeping but to no avail. The “canned” air in cabins debilitating in spite of our balcony. Too much smoking...can’t believe people allowed to smoke INSIDE the casino On a positive note...liked layout of the ship. The crew was fabulous! They truly cared about their passengers. They did a nice happy hour for diamond etc every night. Nice to have decent coffee in diamond club. Our cabin steward was terrific. Our cabin was nice. Officers were disengaged. When I saw an officer and spoke to him or her I usually got little or no response I’m sorry to say it was a terrible experience. We shall never use RCL again. We are back To Celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
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