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336 Royal Caribbean Europe Cruise Reviews

Wont be using RC again or recommending them. Needed something to fit in school holidays. I wanted plenty to occupy child and flexible enough to allow them to eat / play / explore without pressure. So we could all have a break. ... Read More
Wont be using RC again or recommending them. Needed something to fit in school holidays. I wanted plenty to occupy child and flexible enough to allow them to eat / play / explore without pressure. So we could all have a break. Unfortunately it didnt work like that. Boarding was straightforward having cruised before I expected to go straight to my room find cases outside,unpack, go exploring/ have snack etc. No, cant go to room til 1:30. But my access card is in my room not issued on admission to boat? When we did get in cases not there, in corridor about 100m away. Kids club was loved by our lo when it went to plan.It was closed for 2hrs between sessions so say 12-2. Too long for a meal but not long enough to do anything else. The pm session finished at 5pm. She could not eat until 6pm cue one hangry, frustrated disabled child. It closed at 10 so if she watched a late show she couldnt eat afterwards. I am used to being on cruises where you can eat complementary food at almost any time. Granted the selection is limited by time of day but you can get something...couldnt get anything unless prepared to pay. No poolside food or tables. Cant leave child unattended in pool so you have get them out back to room to get changed. Only one buffet on ship for 4000+ people, what are you thinking? They were stopping people going in for breakfast because it was becoming dangerous. Wet floor signage that we watched 3 people fall over in 45mins!! We cannot get breakfast on time so cannot join in morning activities. So much time wasted waiting for lifts a ship this size needs more although I accept you cant retro fit them. So many facilities closed or available to book only. When you book them no-one tells you they are now closed due to weather. So when you take your child there they tell them no. Even though you have booked. Cue upset child because 'I have booked it' to them means a promise its happening. Things advertised we never found like laser tag. Then on last day it was mentioned in on board brochure as a competition. Most of what was 'exciting' for children in clubs never actually happened. Says on todays agenda 'team ball sports' or whatever. Our lo would then get excited, she likes sport. ''No we played with playdough' or a game, she's nearly 11! This added to her anxiety and she wanted to go home after 3 days because of the lack of structure. So no-one enjoyed their holiday The only positives were staff were really kind and helpful right across the ship. The food when we could access it was nice. but we wont be travelling with you again. Cabin had very limited storage and balcony was obscured by the structure of the boat but they arent deal breakers Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This ship is disappointing. The room 2640 is on top of the engine room and is very noisy. The decor is tired and dated. The staff and food are excellent but it feels budget in comparison with celebrity and P & O. For example, there are ... Read More
This ship is disappointing. The room 2640 is on top of the engine room and is very noisy. The decor is tired and dated. The staff and food are excellent but it feels budget in comparison with celebrity and P & O. For example, there are no nice complimentary toiletries - just some body wash in a locked container in the shower. There are no little towel animals or chocolates on the pillow, nor is there any complimentary room service (they charge 8 dollars). Also the sheets are past their best and are bobbled. In the windjammer restaurant the plates and glasses are made of plastic. In the formal dining room there are only two waiters per three large tables meaning service is painfully slow and drinks sometimes don't arrive (no sommeliers at all). Again, no one to pull out your chair and place your napkin on your lap - those little extra touches that make all the difference. Also no coffee after your dinner. Entertainment good, but I like cruising because you are made to feel special and I WANT all those little extra special things. Sorry Royal Caribbean but I think you have gone too far in trying to penny pinch. I shall be going elsewhere for my next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise for the D Day Beaches and the American Cemetery at Normandy. We booked a fairly expensive all day excursion in Le Havre. I was shocked to receive an email about a month before sailing, that due to ship speed limits, ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the D Day Beaches and the American Cemetery at Normandy. We booked a fairly expensive all day excursion in Le Havre. I was shocked to receive an email about a month before sailing, that due to ship speed limits, we would not arrive a Le Havre at 10:30 am as scheduled but at 12:30 pm. The excursion was cancelled and we did receive a full refund. I booked a different excursion to Normandy immediately that was still shown on the cruise planner. Once we got on the ship, a partial credit was issued as this excursion was shortened without a single word to us. The last stop on the excursion was Arromanches, the site of the remaining Muberry Harbor, but at the time we arrived, all shops in the area were closed and only two restaurants open. Everyone on the bus had to go to the bathroom so this was total chaos. My second complaint is the main showroom. One of the shows was a cover band of the group Take That, that I had never heard of. Apparently this was an English group that was know to the British cruisers. We saw the whole show but was not impressed. Imagine our surprise when the Farewell Show the next night featured the group again. However not for just a song or two but their entire show from the night before. What a disappointment, not with the group but scheduling from the entertainment staff. Ship is in need of some updating, but our cabin was fine and our room steward was great. Dining was very slow the first night but we complained to the head waiter and extra efforts were taken to complete dinner service in a reasonable time frame. Food in the main dining room was fine. No options late at night but the Promenade Cafe. I noticed that the bills from the bar did not indicate that a tip had been added. I asked my bartender and he stated that a standard tip was included in the amount paid. He also mentioned that this had changed with their departures from Southampton. I don't know if this was a ploy to get an additional tip added or some issue for the British cruisers. I did not add an additional tip so I hope the bartender was correct. I had heard that Royal was doing away with formal nights but this was not the case. We had two of them and planned for none. Went to a future cruise talk. Three people showed up and the audio visual equipment wouldn't work. In the shore excursions, Royal did not offer transfers to Heathrow after the cruise. I was forced to find my own transportation and was surprised to see transfers on the embarkation schedule. One of the couples at our dinner table called Royal and was able to book this transfer. Why do you have to call to book a transfer? Even though we overnighted in Le Havre, no information was provided in the Compass or by the shopping staff. The cruise line sold bus transfer tickets into town for $10. Based on the crowds of people waiting catch the bus back to the ship in town, so they certainly knew how many people went into town. I mentioned this to the shopping manager and apparently it never occurred to them that people might be interested in Le Havre. I have cruised on Royal five time. This will be my last for some time to come. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Cabins need a refurb. Public areas ok. Entertainment was hit and miss. Ventriloquist was excellent a really funny show. Take that experience were good. Not sure about the headliners, didn't enjoy any of their shows. Drinks prices ... Read More
Cabins need a refurb. Public areas ok. Entertainment was hit and miss. Ventriloquist was excellent a really funny show. Take that experience were good. Not sure about the headliners, didn't enjoy any of their shows. Drinks prices high. Charged for shuttle buses we waited for over an hour for one and in the end paid for a taxi back to the ship, other cruise lines provide these free of charge. Customer service terrible. Some staff rude. The guy who greeted you at the Windjammer always had a smile and was great with the kids. The food overall wasnt on par with other cruise lines and didnt think the Italian specialist restaurant was worth the additional surcharge. Facilities onboard for kids are the best we've experienced at sea, Ie. flow rider, rock climbing, ice skating, arcade, sports court. Probably wouldn't book again on this ship but would give RCL another go. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We were really looking forward to this cruise. There were too many people on this ship. Our first evening we realised that there were not enough seating in-social areas for the amount of people on board. Every evening after dinner it ... Read More
We were really looking forward to this cruise. There were too many people on this ship. Our first evening we realised that there were not enough seating in-social areas for the amount of people on board. Every evening after dinner it was three deep at the bar to get a drink there was no seating available to enjoy a drink, we ended up walking aimlessly around with drink in our hand , which was difficult when crossing the Bay of Biscay in a choppy sea. The sports bar was twice a big then any other seating area , and half empty . I also did not like the fact that children were in the jacuzzis with out parents and used them as swimming pools. People in the jacuzzis fully clothed is also a new one on me !! . The sun bed situation was horrendous far too close together, and very difficult to get on. I can not fault the service in dining room and cabin, the food was mostly ok. The windjammer was a nightmare,very chaotic walking round and round trying to find what you wanted, ( why can’t they put butter next to toast ) . We have been on Royal Caribbean 5 times this is by far the worst. They have made a massive mistake with the refreb of this ship The only good thing was how quick we disembarked no problem. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I've sailed on other cruise lines and Royal was not my favorite, but they were going to a port that I really wanted to go to and not many other cruiselines went there. This was a family trip so that my dad and the rest of the family ... Read More
I've sailed on other cruise lines and Royal was not my favorite, but they were going to a port that I really wanted to go to and not many other cruiselines went there. This was a family trip so that my dad and the rest of the family could visit the fishing town in Spain where my grandfather came from. Overall the ship was fine, but there were a few things that irked me. They closed the Windjammer after each meal - not getting a cup of coffee, sitting at a table and playing games, chatting, etc. They had Cafe Promenade to get drinks, but they never had lemonade and it was always crowded. They had no card room and trying to find a table in a bar area that fit 8 people in semi-quiet was impossible. Another odd thing to me was when we go off in port there was never a sign telling you when to come back on board, unless you had your Cruise Compass with you no one said anything. Maps for port were at Guest Services, but it was never mentioned anywhere, I just happened to see them there one day. Our room steward was ok, not bad, but after 1 day I never got my ice bucket which I asked for every day. I gave up after a while. Also, on embarkation day I bought 2 bottles of sparkling wine with strawberries and one bottle of red wine with cheese plate - never got the cheese plate and they only gave me on plate of the strawberries. I mentioned it to guest services but they never did anything about it. The ice show - you can't reserve seats so you have to get there almost an hour early to wait & then be told "sorry no more seats, but wait here and some Suites & up people may not show up". We gave up and never say the show. Overall the people on board were very nice, being Americans we were in the minority, but that was fine. The ship could use a sprucing up - mainly the rooms and public bathrooms. Food was fine, ate in the restaurant 3x and the Windjammer the rest of the time. The dining room just takes too long for my taste. Ports were great - Lisbon, Vigo, Canary Islands, La Coruna, Funchal. I would visit those places again. We used RCL tours for all except La Coruna where I did a private tour. RCL tours were fine and we enjoyed them. Cabin was fine, although we were in an Aft Balcony 7408 and knew it would be a bit noisy in rough seas, and it all worked out. We only had 2 days/nights with rough seas and there was a bit of a shuddering of the cabin. Toilet in the cabin liked to fill almost to the brim at night - very strange. Told them about it and it stayed that way the entire cruise. I never overflowed but it was strange. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Overall the cruise was a cruise, a time away from our everyday lives to relax in order to continue with the demands normal life lends our way. That said let me tell you we have been on over 25 cruises, on several different cruise lines, ... Read More
Overall the cruise was a cruise, a time away from our everyday lives to relax in order to continue with the demands normal life lends our way. That said let me tell you we have been on over 25 cruises, on several different cruise lines, and this has to be one of the most unique and challenging thus far. Here are my pros and cons from this cruise: 1. The pros for entertainment was all good with costumes appropriate for all family members. This modest dress was surprising and appreciated since many lines have gone to risque attire making the cast and production cheap and unrefined and an insult to the talented cast. The production of "Grease" was a nice addition; however, the show is very long so placing a 10-15 minute intermission or shortening the production would have been beneficial. The con for the entertainment was the lack of consistency for show time, Some times were set to early and 2nd showing was too late to 1st seating diners making attending some shows challenging but could be sorted out in the end. The second con was the comedians who either made excuses about their lack of talent, claimed they were unable to perform because they only tell inappropriate jokes, or some other excuse. This should never occur. 2. The pros for dining has to be for the main dining room that created wonderful meals each day. While some of the combinations were not what we desired the staff was eager to make the selection to our liking. Our table servers, Naptali and Birendra, were attentive to ensure a top-of-the-line experience. However, one con also involved our table servers who when asked for a small amount of extra vegetables the amounts continued to increase each day to being excessive. In addition, Naptali told us each day that we needed to complete the survey providing excellent ratings which resulted in lower ratings. Another con was the wastefulness in the Windjammer which threw away tons of food several times a day. Finally, any other ship we have traveled on a variety of food items can be found throughout the day and is continuous until at least midnight. Not on this cruise the only food available after 9:00 was pizza with the Windjammer closing for the night making guests on option for food or beverages on deck 5. 3. The extra charge items should be avoided at all cost. We did the mystery dinner that was ill produced and definitely not worth the $79/person extra charge. The cast were from the main stage and it was clear, early on, they are not actors. This was a waste of time and money. Second was the escape room which after we tried and failed (only could solve 1 of the 6 puzzles within the hour) we discovered that no one has ever been able to complete the challenge the first time. They try to convince guests to book multiple times at $19.99/each person with the knowledge it is impossible. Other lines have an escape room and is solvable within the time limit making it a fun activity to share with family and new friends. Even with the challenges the cruise fulfilled its purpose of a relaxing time away from home and work. But it added information about thinking twice prior to booking another Royal cruise in the future. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We stayed overnight in a hotel in Southampton then got a taxi to the city terminal for 11am. As D+ loyalty we got priority security and check in and were on the ship within 20 minutes. We called into the Diamond Lounge for snacks and ... Read More
We stayed overnight in a hotel in Southampton then got a taxi to the city terminal for 11am. As D+ loyalty we got priority security and check in and were on the ship within 20 minutes. We called into the Diamond Lounge for snacks and a hot drink as windjammer wasn't open. Our balcony cabin was ready by 1pm and 30 minutes later our cases turned up so we unpacked and went for lunch. We used our D+ BOGO and went to Chops Grill first night and Giovanni's the second night. The other 4 nights we went to MTD and our waiters Russel and Bradey were excellent. Pre-dinner most nights we went to the Concierge Lounge where the service was excellent. We visited 3 ports. Vigo- Spain.Nice port 10 minutes walk up a hill got us to a long pedestrian street of shops including Zara and Mango. Gijon-Spain.This was a 20 minutes free shuttle ride into town.There was a nice promenade plus a long street of shops including Zara and Mango Le-Havre-France.There was a massive queue for the €5 return shuttle with estimated 45 minutes wait. We got a taxi instead to the docks shopping centre for only €8 which took around 10 minutes. We enjoyed our cruise and the ship looked in excellent condition. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We found the staff very helpful polite and couldn’t do enough for you. The food was remarkable quality Choice was outstanding. Restaurant staff couldn’t do enough for you. We found that our cabin attendant was absolutely ... Read More
We found the staff very helpful polite and couldn’t do enough for you. The food was remarkable quality Choice was outstanding. Restaurant staff couldn’t do enough for you. We found that our cabin attendant was absolutely fabulous outstanding in all aspects of offers and help and suggestions he made.Entertainment we found enjoyable some nights were absolutely outstanding still couldn’t fault it. We were on the ship on the 2019/10/05 for 6 days. It was our first cruise and we thoroughly had a fantastic time we sailed from Southampton we had two stops in Spain one in France back to Southampton thoroughly enjoyed ourselves to the point is we have booked another cruise with Royal Caribbean on the jewel of the sea in Dubai in March next year. We just like to say well done Royal Caribbean explorer of the sea for all your hard work in making our cruise special Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Independence of the Seas is a very large vessel but its facilities are not themselves large enough or well-staffed enough to accommodate the passenger population. Windjammer, the popular buffet restaurant, frequently becomes so full that ... Read More
Independence of the Seas is a very large vessel but its facilities are not themselves large enough or well-staffed enough to accommodate the passenger population. Windjammer, the popular buffet restaurant, frequently becomes so full that finding seats for groups of 2 or 3 becomes testing; for bigger groups often impossible. The food though is excellent & the staff, insufficient in number to cope with these events, are very good. The drink situation onboard is risible. Again, function rooms & bars often become filled for events because of the excessive passenger population, & only 1 or 2 waiters are left to cope with their demands. The selling of drinks on board is poor. Individual drinks bought effectively for cash are about twice as much as in U.K. bars; a glass of rose costing about $8 (£6.50). The onboard drinks package offered to my wife & me, both retired & living on pensions, cost £140 per day; really. The only time we bought alcohol on this cruise was during a port call at Cannes. We bought a bottle of Gin for our daughter principally because of the attractive bottle & its’ labelling. We declared this bottle on boarding the ship & handed it for safe keeping to security staff clearly explaining the reason for its purchase. When returned the labelling had tape stuck over it. The room service on this ship is the best I have ever experienced & is worthy of commendation. Hard working staff are the salvation of many rather cavalier management decisions on this ship. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Having had a brilliant cruise on Navigator last year, we booked to do the same itinerary with friends from Scotland. Our 19th cruise - and 8th with R.C. but what a huge disappointment - so much has changed. The admin staff were ... Read More
Having had a brilliant cruise on Navigator last year, we booked to do the same itinerary with friends from Scotland. Our 19th cruise - and 8th with R.C. but what a huge disappointment - so much has changed. The admin staff were 'polite' to the point of rudeness. The ship was tired and dull - downright grubby in places. Mirrors in dining room had a film of grease over them. No real sparkle to this ship. It may be going in for refit - but there was no excuse for poor cleaning. All the luxury elements were missing, no flowers on dining room table - in fact no diners!! Our complete section had empty tables around us - the food was tepid, insipid and uninspiring. Waiting staff were excellent - doing their best under the circumstances. The head chef spent more time apologising to guests than he did in the kitchen. Conclusion - they were trying to get you to spend more in the speciality dining ! Forget the windjammer - crammed to capacity due to guests not using dining room. Our jnr suite - excellent space - but we had to ask for the floor to be cleaned in the second week - no sign of a hoover and carpet getting thicker every day. Glass tables in bars were grubby. Drinks waiters friendly - but then they were getting regular tips to remember us. The changed the itinerary dropping Genoa before we even sailed - due to overcrowding - did they not book their slot over a year ago?? the replacement port was skipped due to the non-appearing Hurricane. Lisbon was skipped - and they substituted it with an overnight stay in Le Havre. Of all the ports they could have gone to why this ferry port with nothing of interest?? They did not even lay on shuttle buses to get to town. Over 3,000 people on board, many old and challenged - the queue for the port bus was over one hour long. the 25 minute walk - was more like 40 mins. They did manage however to book coaches for an overpriced trip into Paris. They even took coaches to Rouen for a trip - WHY French health official had declared the place an health issue due to huge chemical fire. Toxic soot on everything, questions over air quality and a ban on eating fruit and veg grown there and the milk had to be thrown away - yet RC thought it would be a great idea to take people to visit it. How desperate for profit was that. Very poor entertainment Cleary they are floundering in the expanding cruise market and have lost their edge. Our worst cruise out of 19 others !! Very poor value for money and disappointing to say the least -- Royal Caribbean dont even bother responding to correspondence outlining issues. Staff refused to provide a letter for insurance company stating port missed and the reason. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We have cruised with several lines, but found Royal Caribbean's Explorer of the Seas the best for food.The choice in the buffet is vast. Embarkation was swift & easy, as was disembarkation.Going from Southampton is ideal, so ... Read More
We have cruised with several lines, but found Royal Caribbean's Explorer of the Seas the best for food.The choice in the buffet is vast. Embarkation was swift & easy, as was disembarkation.Going from Southampton is ideal, so much better than having to fly to a port. Entertained by Perry Grant most nights. A very talented pianist, singer & comedian offering great fun with the audience's participation. All other entertainment was good, especially the Ice Show which should not be missed The only disappointment was missing 2 ports & spending 2 days in Le Havre instead! We also found the prices of drinks quite high. The cabin was comfortable as were all on board facilities. A good choice of shore excursions, but again pricey. Very good service in all areas. A little 'tired' in some areas, but due for a refit in 2020. We certainly recommend Royal Caribbean & will definitely cruise with them in the future. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Second cruise with RC, first one was on the Navigator (pre refurbishment) and that was so much better, as my wife is in a wheelchair there were many issues that we feel should be addressed:- -Lack of unisex accessible toilets, only one ... Read More
Second cruise with RC, first one was on the Navigator (pre refurbishment) and that was so much better, as my wife is in a wheelchair there were many issues that we feel should be addressed:- -Lack of unisex accessible toilets, only one on deck 12, or its back to your room. - Great idea to put a piano in a lift at peak times which in effect made lift unusable, and yes they put a piano in a lift.....great idea that was - Sun beds rammed in side by side with no access from the sides unless you spend 30 mins dragging other ones out of the way - Apart from deck 4, there were no Sun lounges available - State rooms were shabby and need updating - The so called multi million pound refurbishment was obviously not spent on interior decoration - Windjammer menus seemed to repeated every other day and food was on many occasions cold - It was like a treasure hunt most days in the Windjammer to find the vegetables, which again were cold - On the other extreme you would get second degree burns from the utensils that were kept under the lamps In summary, RC seems to be focusing on quantity and not quality, can we please have the ship's back as they were..... Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
i chose this cruise because I fancied he list of ports to be visited. As a widow travelling alone I like cruising because I can sit at the same table every night with the same guests so I can get to know people without having to make ... Read More
i chose this cruise because I fancied he list of ports to be visited. As a widow travelling alone I like cruising because I can sit at the same table every night with the same guests so I can get to know people without having to make introductions every night. This has always worked well on previous cruises. On this occasion I got ready for the evening meal, spruced myself up ready to make new friends and found myself all alone. After two nights I spoke to the Maitre .D who said there were two other ladies due to be at my table but they had obviously decided not to use the dining room. There were no other tables with space I could move to apart from those occupied by family groups. As I didn’t want to intrude in families I went on every other night to the Windjammer. I have no complaints about the buffet food but this was not the holiday experience I had been hoping for. As I eat alone most nights of the year I find having company for my meal something I really look forward to. Obviously I pay double price as a single passengers to then have this disappointment over the meal was a real blow. Not RC’s fault but I will probably not ever book another cruise in case the same thing happens, The embarkation was wonderful. From being dropped off by taxi just over ten minutes to being in the buffet. Cabins ready within a couple of hours. Nice cabin, sofa a bonus, kettle which I wasn’t expecting. Comfortable bed, great shower. I had an aft cabin, no 8710. Disappointed that there was just a door with a high window so couldn’t easily see out. However the balcony itself was good with two armchairs and a sun bed. The ports of call were generally very good apart from Ibiza and Majorca which were not at all inspiring. Watch out in Cadiz. I had my purse stolen and I still don’t understand how that happened. I thought I might have a bit of advice from Guest Services about informing the police, etc., but they were completely disinterested and offered no help at all. I have enjoyed my days away but they could have been so much better after paying £3500. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We had wanted to go on IOS for a long time and although wasn't disappointed, wasn't for us. Several reasons really, far too big, twice the size of others we have been on and this was our 10th. Firstly when we arrived on the ... Read More
We had wanted to go on IOS for a long time and although wasn't disappointed, wasn't for us. Several reasons really, far too big, twice the size of others we have been on and this was our 10th. Firstly when we arrived on the ship, we couldn't find our cabin, it didn't matter who we asked and was sent in one direction, once arriving there, was told it was another so initially very frustrating. Eventually after three quarters of an hour, one of the staff requested someone to take us to Cabin 3309. Unfortunately the chap who was taking us couldn't find it either. However, eventually after a couple of days we were able to find the cabin ok - as long as you knew which end you were!!! Secondly, due to excessive noise above our cabin (3309 Deck 3), on the third night with very little sleep, I rang Guest Services and in turn Security came to see us. At first the lady couldn't hear anything, blaming it on the "rocking of the ship" and then heard what we did. Unfortunately for us, and obviously didn't know this when booking, the Playmakers Bar was above us (and affected other passengers on that deck). It wasn't passengers, but the cleaners and basically having a "party" by rolling the trolleys around, thumping on the floor and talking/screaming loudly. I was told by the Security that I would get a phone call from Guest Services within half an hour to inform us what was happening. Still at this time wasn't aware of "Playmakers Bar" above. I didn't receive the phone call but the noise did stop and didn't know any of the above until I went to Guest Services the following morning to discuss and make sure that the complaint had been logged. The next couple of nights were quieter but then started again on about the 5th night and carried on, and each morning I went up to complain. Although Guest Services are very nice and apologetic it didn't bode well at all. A lady at Guest Service's asked me if I'd booked direct with RCI. I explained that we booked through our travel agent, but that should make no difference, as clearly if they - whoever you booked with - explained that this Bar is above the cabins, no one would book them, which she didn't comment on. There was a wedding family on board which made themselves known day and night and also drank as much as they possibly could and actually thought the cruise was just for them. We sat and tried to watch the "movie under the stars" but in all honesty couldn't hear anything due to the noise they were making so left. They didn't talk, just shouted and screamed. On another occasion one of the children was seen running around on the stairs and messing about with the lift buttons. A gentleman asked him to behave to which he had a torrent of swearing and abuse thrown at him from this child. On another occasion, two children were in the "hot tub" on their own, jumping in and out. I did ask the Lifeguard if it was safe and actually were they allowed in there on their own. He did go and ask them to get out but they didn't. Another lifeguard came over and spoke to us and said "I can't ask them to get out as they are allowed in there on their own (??) and when I asked where the parents supervising them, he said "parents are up at the bar" at the other end of the pool !! On a plus, the entertainment was excellent, especially the ice shows which were fabulous. Grease was ok, but personally still prefer the film and maybe the actors are a little tired of doing it all too, just my opinion of course. The entertainment on the Promenade is brilliant too, although there isn't enough seating area for passengers but not sure how they could make this different. The food was excellent, both in the MDR and Windjammer. The Windjammer having far more choice though. The staff are amazing and cannot do enough for you, whether it's housekeeping (Maria Deck 3), the waiters in MDR (Table 442) and also in the Windjammer - they work so hard and nothing is too much trouble whatever you ask for. All the staff deserve this praise and more. The places we visited were great too. We just did our own thing, apart from Cadiz when we took an excursion to the beach. Well worth the money as you wouldn't be able to walk to it from the ship. Didn't see much of the Captain (nor his Crew) and to be honest, was a man of very few words whilst speaking over the tannoy. Whilst we didn't expect to meet him personally it would have been nice to have a few more sentences from him!! All of the above is obviously just our opinion, as everyone has their own. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We sailed from Southampton and because we are Elite status on Celebrity, we are Diamond on Royal. This meant that we had priority boarding. We were soon on the ship, but had to go to the Windjammer for lunch as our room was not yet ready. ... Read More
We sailed from Southampton and because we are Elite status on Celebrity, we are Diamond on Royal. This meant that we had priority boarding. We were soon on the ship, but had to go to the Windjammer for lunch as our room was not yet ready. I missed the welcome drink that we are given on embarkation by Celebrity. The room was ready just after 1.15. We were in 7314, which was starboard side. I was delighted to see that there was no lifeboat blocking our view. We unpacked our trolley bags and it was already obvious that storage space was going to be tight, no overhead locker as we have been used to on the Celebrity S class ships. Our main cases had not turned up by the time we went to Muster. We went in good time, so that we could get a seat. Not so on Royal, you queue up on an outside deck like school children waiting to go into class. The Captain made an announcement at the end of the proceedings and had to be prompted by someone as to which ship he was on. In fact we were led away as he was part way through his announcement. Really? As 5 pm was not far away, we went up on to deck 11 for Sail Away, which was delayed, so we enquired as to the whereabouts of the Diamond Lounge, so we could avail ourselves of the free drinks. These were constantly filled up and this remained so throughout the cruise. In fact we were one week into the cruise before we realised that we could ask for bottled water during Diamond hours. A fantastic perk for me as I use it to boil for my early morning cup of tea. We had booked Anytime dining and I had pre arranged 7 pm as our dining time. We were able to use our 3 free drinks loaded on to our card in the dining room until 20.30. A fantastic perk. We were seated at the same table every night except the first, as I am Dairy Intolerant, so this makes it easier for the waiter. Handy really looked after at table 321A. After our meal we found a seat in the Starlight Lounge, where we would spend 2 hours listening to Perry Grant. This was the one and only time that we were able to get a seat, as many passengers were still in the Theatre. We listened to him playing for 2 hours, but then I was weary of him asking guests the same questions, Do you have walk in wardrobes, do you have Formica in your kitchen, what colour is it etc.etc. We returned to our cabin to find that our cases had at last been delivered, but we left the unpacking until the next morning. I could certainly have done with the delivery being before the guaranteed 8 pm. We ate breakfasts in the Sapphire dining room on Deck 4 as it was waiter service. On the first morning we asked to be seated in the Diamond area. I was so pleased that we did this, as someone from our Roll Call group was also seated with us. We ‘hit it off’ and came across each other multiple times. We saw each other at the Meet & Mingle, where I was lucky enough to win the second raffle prize, which was a drinks container. Our new friend asked the CD why the ship was overbooked; they had been asked to give up their cabin by Royal, but as they had come over from Spain for the cruise and had an actual cabin, Royal told them they were OK to travel. Apparently there were 500 less guests than the previous week, which had still been the school holidays, where families had shared cabins. This week, most travellers were couples, and Royal had booked too many Guarantee cabins and I suspect not many guests had requested Royal Up ( we were still being sent e mails just one week before the cruise inviting us to apply). One feature of this cruise was the number of Alpha calls, ambulances met the ship at every port, even when the cruise ended someone fell down the escalators and had to be taken to hospital. We enjoyed the evening entertainment. The Barricade Boys, and Beatles Celebration were outstanding. The Starlight Lounge was overfull every night, so I was pleased that Perry Grant was invited to perform in 2 shows on stage, We also saw 2 Ice shows, one especially for Diamond members and Seasons which was performed for all guests. On the final evening the Guest Choir performed at 9 am in the Star Lounge. We just managed to get there on time, which was a good job, as my husband and our new friends had spent every Sea day rehearsing in Dizzy’s at lunch time. We were lucky with the weather, even the Bay if Biscay was calm and too soon we were back in Southampton. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We are loyal to Royal Caribbean, we have always enjoyed cruises with them. Now we have a baby in tow, it made all the more sense to go with a holiday that we know what to expect and really enjoy. Useful baby-related tips: - we ate ... Read More
We are loyal to Royal Caribbean, we have always enjoyed cruises with them. Now we have a baby in tow, it made all the more sense to go with a holiday that we know what to expect and really enjoy. Useful baby-related tips: - we ate in the main dining room every night. Our baby - then aged 10 months - ate small pieces of food from our plates and we got extra portions of vegetables (the wait staff suggested this) so he was very happy. - there isn’t a baby splash zone on Explorer, but if you go to Adventure Ocean you can borrow a paddling pool (free of charge) and place it on the deck beside your sun lounger. Pool staff filled it up with lukewarm water. - on Explorer there isn’t a Royal Tots Nursery as such, instead they turned one of the conference rooms into a playroom with soft mats, musical toys, a chute, a see-saw, books etc. They had 1 designated activity time every day at 10am, apart from that the playroom was open for babies/toddlers (accompanied by their parents) 10am-10pm. - we used the buggy a lot but it was also handy to have the baby carrier eg for muster stations on the first day and for visiting hilly / cobbled ports such as Lisbon. The staff couldn’t have done more for us. Perhaps it was because there weren’t loads of children on this ship that we got extra special attention everywhere we went. Or perhaps it was because our baby is a very smiley baby and people can’t help but smile at him! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Had great time , took my 12 year old daughter did not know what to expect after reading the last review. (Did notice dents in the lift doors and did hear about the young man who was tazered and the 39 passengers that had to leave the ship ... Read More
Had great time , took my 12 year old daughter did not know what to expect after reading the last review. (Did notice dents in the lift doors and did hear about the young man who was tazered and the 39 passengers that had to leave the ship from the week before we sailed) But thankfully we only experienced well behaved children and young adults on our cruise . Totally overwhelmed by the sheer size of this ship . Went on and explored at approximately 11am . Our time was 1-30 pm to embark but it really doesn’t matter what time you get there. The facilities are outstanding , from the pools to the flow rider to the theatres and dining rooms unbelievable ship . A couple of negatives , 1) the windjammer is an ‘buffet type diner’ I just personally found it stressful , just too busy , but the food was fantastic. Brilliant choice. 2) I didn’t have drink package for myself just my daughter and sometimes I felt like that I had took the cheap way to cruise when occasionally bar person would say ‘oh just a soda package ‘ 3) My room , nothing wrong with it but my daughter got chocolate on the cover the first night and it was not change throughout our stay , and even be night her sheet was missing so I found a trolley in the corridor and took one of it. Maybe I should have said something? Also I love the animal towels they put on your bed but we only got one , my daughter was so excited wish they could have done more has a friend she met had three, but I do understand they are busy. But all small things compared to the rest of the positives . Pool fantastic my daughter loved the jacuzzis Entertainment absolutely brilliant loved it all , went to grease , comedians , brilliant ice show, best night was silent disco we had great time , it was all just fab! Loads to do on ship , never got chance in the 6 nights to do it all and relax and we only left the ship once in Spain for couple of hours. My daughter loved the quiz at 8 pm every night even though we were not too good at it, then we did the family game show and then watched whatever was in that evening in the theatre fantastic! We also ordered the complimentary continental breakfast 2 days to our room , we loved it , what a treat. But the best experience we had on our holiday, was the dining . Our waiter and waitress was fantastic Lisele and Remidios . They made us feel so special catering to our every needs.. going out of there way to please us . We had great view of the sea from our table absolutely loved going down for dinner. Fantastic food, from duck to steaks to lamb chops and large shrimps !! We had an internal room which had plenty of space for the two of us and I loved it was so dark so slept later. Brilliant time we just want to go again . Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was our first cruise and we absolutely loved it. 2 adults & 1 teen Our Balcony Cabin was bigger than expected and equipped with everything we needed, a bit dated but clean and comfortable. Nice bedding and comfy beds Very ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we absolutely loved it. 2 adults & 1 teen Our Balcony Cabin was bigger than expected and equipped with everything we needed, a bit dated but clean and comfortable. Nice bedding and comfy beds Very Happy with our room attendant Sugi who was always smiling and kept our cabin in good order. We had a little problem with the Pullman bed on the first evening and that was dealt within minutes followed by an apology letter. We opted for “my time dinning” although booked our time slots in the planner before we sailed this way we still could be allocated the same table and waiter each night. Our waiter Beemal was great kept us entertained and was very attentive. Could not fault the food in any of the restaurants, bars or Cafe’s. We mainly ate in the main restaurant for breakfast, lunch & dinner. We used the Windjammer a couple of time and found the food to be very good, huge choice and although it was busy we didn’t have a problem finding a table. Johnny Rockets was also really good, milkshakes were amazing and worth the additional $9.95 per person on there own. The pool areas were quite busy especially on sea days when it was more difficult to find a sun bed, also it was school holidays so ship was generally busy, it never seemed overly crowded and we liked the adult solarium. We never had much of a wait getting drinks around the pool bars, the sky bar was our favourite, the staff were the friendliest, not that you need to go to the bar as there are plenty of waiters walking round delivering directly to our sun beds. Ice show, dance shows and Grease were amazing. My partner used the gym which was well equipped and he had a great view when arriving a ports first thing. We had the Key package and I would recommend it, it come with quite a few perks including the reserved seating for all the shows and the internet. We also were allocated time slots for the climbing wall, flow rider, ice skating and trampolines (we didn’t get round to doing most of them) The first day lunch was served in the main dining room but used the chops grill menu, It was a lovely and relaxed way to start our cruise. It was also nice to leave the ship when we wanted to rather than waiting to be called. Overall for what we paid which was about £17 per per person per day it was good value and would get again if offered at the name price. The only thing I would say is that it’s not fully advertised on the ship and you have to ask when you go into the theatre and shows to be seated. We had to select a showing for the Grease performance and was advised to meet in the bar and would be taken to our seats, this didn't happen so we made our own way and was shown to our seats. We left the ship at both ports in Spain but just had a walk around did not do any trips but would consider on our next cruise (already booked) it’s a shame the independence is not sailing from the UK next year as we really loved it, just hoping Athem lives up to it. Overall we had a wonderful cruise! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and the cost. Usually cruise Celebrity but the cost for this was less for equivalent sailing. Our status with Celebrity transferred over to Royal and was a great benefit for us. All the ports ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and the cost. Usually cruise Celebrity but the cost for this was less for equivalent sailing. Our status with Celebrity transferred over to Royal and was a great benefit for us. All the ports were great and crew was excellent. We only did two excursions and they were arranged privately. Did a tour in Tallin, Estonia and a 2 day tour in St. Petersburg, Russia. Other ports were Skagen and Copenhagen, Denmark; Stockholm, Sweden and Helsinki, Finland. We began and ended in Amsterdam. For the ports - do your research. The transfers were expensive and not always necessary if you like to walk - and not always a long walk. Some of the areas were a short distance from the dock. The Brilliance was very shiny and new in most of the public areas. The Schooner Bar and Colony Club were very dark and reminiscent of an older type of ship decor. The cabins are in need of a redo. Food is very subjective. Meat ordered medium rare was usually overcooked and replaced. Other dishes were good and bad. I never went hungry! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We have sailed several times with the royal carribean and normally I love my cruise - however the last cruise I had in August, will sadly probably be the last cruise I choose with Royal Carribean - the staff as always were perfect and ... Read More
We have sailed several times with the royal carribean and normally I love my cruise - however the last cruise I had in August, will sadly probably be the last cruise I choose with Royal Carribean - the staff as always were perfect and could not do enough to make our holiday special - however we had an unbelievable number of teens on our cruise who congregated each evening in level 8 - my floor - particularly near the lift area - so I was constantly feeling intimidated each time I used the lift - so much so that I opted to use the stairs - I had teens running up and down corridors late at night and once it was as late as 3.30 am - I did ring security on several occasions and in all fairness they came and solved the problem ...on that night - but it would be exactly the same on every night - annoyingly even on the last night they woke me at 1am - and as I was leaving the ship just after 7am to drive hundreds of miles I wasn’t happy at all - there was no monitoring of the corridors at all - I understand the shop is due for a refurb - which had I known I would probably have booked another ship as it looked tatty and needing paintwork in several places The food as always was incredible plenty of choice and fantastic On our return I did email customer services re our noisy holiday and was told I should have rang reception - which I did - no other help whatsoever - they didn’t seem interested whatsoever that I had saved all year for a holiday to be disturbed every single night and reluctant to use the lifts I personally will prob not ever be booking with RC again - not just because it was simply too noisy (I do have four children if my own so I am not anti children) but also the attitude I had from customer services Sadly it falls far short of the holiday I saved hard for - I love cruise ships so i’ll prob try another company next year Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We have cruised 3 times with Royal Caribbean and decided we shall not ever travel again in their ships. Grubby worn and extremely lacking of any luxury fixtures or fittings. The chairs in the Stsr Lounge were extremely worn torn and shabby ... Read More
We have cruised 3 times with Royal Caribbean and decided we shall not ever travel again in their ships. Grubby worn and extremely lacking of any luxury fixtures or fittings. The chairs in the Stsr Lounge were extremely worn torn and shabby and some of the rest rooms left a lot to be desired..,. Broken door handles and fixtures missing....if you miss dinner and attempt to eat in the Winjammer it closed st 9pm do we were left to eat pizza at the small cafe on the promenade which was heaving with very loud teenagers. Great trip for families but some parents are oblivious to the antics of their offspring and we witnessed a good fight between some youngsters who were throwing ice cream at each other covering walls and floors on deck 11....bar staff were excellent as were the casino staff but the lack of quality isnd detail of cabins was very disappointing. we Are planning a cruise next spring and shall definitely be joining Celebrity again....maybe a little more expensive but extremely superior quality.... regards. Lynda Guy Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Where do I begin .... or should I just say wow I'm glad i'm off this ship. We have sailed with many companies down the years including Royal Caribbean and always had wonderful experiences with excellent ports of call, lovely ... Read More
Where do I begin .... or should I just say wow I'm glad i'm off this ship. We have sailed with many companies down the years including Royal Caribbean and always had wonderful experiences with excellent ports of call, lovely fellow passengers and fantastic service. However, we have never sailed from a UK port in the height of the holiday season and I have to say we will NEVER do this again. I really do not have words to use to describe this latest experience but disastrous might be the best expression. What happened to manners, courtesy, politeness and general awareness amongst the British public. It is obviously a lost art. The clientele that Royal Caribbean are obviously trying to attract on this ship is not what you would expect on a cruise ship. During out 14 day cruise we had numerous families removed from the ship at various ports, fighting in the lifts which caused the lifts to be closed to clean up the blood, numerous random acts of nudity, severe drunken behaviour and one incident of a youth being detained in the ships cells for the last 2 days of the cruise. Even our comedian commented that the price of cruising has obviously gone down due to the clientele on board. People would stampede into the lifts before allowing anyone to get out and the entire ship just became survival of the fittest. Even on quiet day when there was an abundance of sunbeds available there were certain families from the North West of England who would hover around the consierge sunbed area and wait for the deck patrol members to walk away before charging on mass into the area to occupy as many sunbeds as possible then argue and refuse to move when advised they were not allowed to stay there due to the fact they had not paid for this service. It was all about taking as many 'selfies' as possible in this area for bragging rights when they got home. They constantly threatened the staff that if any of their property was removed they would claim against the company for theft and damage so the staff just gave up. This was the general attitude around the ship so in the end most of the service staff just gave up due to the way they were being treated and the whole ship just ended up looking dirty and untidy with plates, glasses and food left lying around all day. It was a real shame for the genuine passengers on board who had manners and thoughtfulness and polite children with manners. The other major problem on board is that this ship has been refitted to accommodate a further 500 passengers without any increase in facilities or deck space. This just makes the whole ship tight for room and again the waiting staff in the dining rooms had to pass food over tables, aisles and squeeze between tables like i have never seen before. Our ports of call were very good and we did enjoy getting away from the football style hooligans on board for the long days in port. Embarkation and disembarkation was always smooth and swift even if we always avoided the thought of getting back on board fr as long as possible. So to sum up if you want to feel like you are on a cheap holiday camp with rude and obnoxious passengers who think the world owes them a living then spend 14 days aboard this cruise from hell. If not I would suggest you sail with another cruise company out of any port that is not in the UK. We, and many other passengers we spoke to, will never sail on this cruise ship again from Southampton in the summer holidays. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Chose this cruise mainly to see St Petersburg, Estonia, Stockholm and Copenhagen. Excellent to have the overnights in Stockholm and Copenhagen and especially two nights in St Petersburg. We found both the embarkation and ... Read More
Chose this cruise mainly to see St Petersburg, Estonia, Stockholm and Copenhagen. Excellent to have the overnights in Stockholm and Copenhagen and especially two nights in St Petersburg. We found both the embarkation and disembarkation went well for us and I didn't hear anyone we spoke to complaining about it. Found the ship easy to navigate and liked that there are not too many people on board. All the staff we spoke to were all friendly and helpful. Great having the Solarium on the cooler days and will look for that on other ships when we choose our next cruise. Very good entertainment at the different areas around the ship and people seemed to join in with the crew. Bingo was a bit of a rip-off so won't do that again but did have a go on the pokies and won $500. Good variety and quality of food in the free dining areas. (we didn't try any that you had to pay for) We didn't do any of the ship's shore excursions so can't comment on them. (we did do a tour in St Petersburg with TJ Travel and would highly recommend them) Will definitely travel Royal Caribbean again! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We are a married couple in early 60's. We booked this because we prefer Royal Caribbean for it's informal yet not too rowdy atmosphere. The cruise ticked all the boxes. There were over 900 kids running around which noised ... Read More
We are a married couple in early 60's. We booked this because we prefer Royal Caribbean for it's informal yet not too rowdy atmosphere. The cruise ticked all the boxes. There were over 900 kids running around which noised things up a bit but what do you expect when you book a cruise during the school holidays. Big shout out to Hello Clo, the best cruise director RC have in my opinion. She was always visible about the ship and such a cheery person We did notice a few slight issues. First is the lack of bar staff and waiters, particularly in the Schooner bar. Poor guys there were run off their feet. Again I noticed that the numbers attending the main dining room seem to be getting ever lower and the Windjammer is always mobbed. Is anyone at RC seeing this ? Perhaps it is time to convert the 3 MDR floors to a buffet and put the MDR on deck 11 - only a suggestion. We are Diamond plus members and as such have access to the Diamond and Concierge lounges. If RC are going to provide these lounges for 24 hour access, can they please ensure the coffee machine is always stocked. We regularly went up for a late night coffee only to find out the kitchen was closed and told if we wanted coffee to go downstairs to the Promenade cafe. Sort of defeats the purpose of having 24 hour lounges. Also, with regard to the music guy Perry singing in the Schooner bar at night. It was always mobbed right into the corridor and you simply couldn't move or get past. While upstairs, the much larger Star lounge was empty. Again I ask, is anyone at RC paying attention to things like this ? And we know people don't do trivia for the prizes. But to give out the same prize ( yellow highlighters ) again and again got a bit boring. Surely it wouldn't cost too much to give out the odd cap, T-shirt, pen, key ring, etc Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
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