128 Tampa Repositioning Cruise Reviews

We had always wanted to spend time at sea. We heard about repositioning cruises and chose this one. We had no idea what to expect and were absolutely delighted with certain aspects of the cruise. We did not expect the ... Read More
We had always wanted to spend time at sea. We heard about repositioning cruises and chose this one. We had no idea what to expect and were absolutely delighted with certain aspects of the cruise. We did not expect the internationalism of the staff, nor did we expect the compact cabins to be so beautifully designed and comfortable. We liked their decoration, the sumptuous and copious towels, the fine bed linens and excellent lighting. The sea was much more important to us than games or shows. We loved looking out our window (deck 4, port side, outside cabin) before gong to sleep at night. We enjoyed walking or sitting and reading on the promenade deck. We loved looking at the ship's wake or standing in the bow. We had trouble finding a quiet place for a pre-dinner drink. Perhaps this was because we were newcomers and there were places that we didn't know about. We finally resolved this issue by having a drink in our cabin. We took a lot of our breakfasts and lunches in the Main Dining Room. It was a treat to be served and we did enjoy meeting different people at each meal. Being pampered by our room steward Krishna, eating delicious food served by graceful s servers, sea gazing, spending time in our cabin were the parts of the cruise that we enjoyed most. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I, and many others felt that Royal Caribbean has gone downhill. We are Diamond members, and are disappointed to feel this way. The reasons include: 1 - there were limited activities for us to participate in (especially on sea days, which ... Read More
I, and many others felt that Royal Caribbean has gone downhill. We are Diamond members, and are disappointed to feel this way. The reasons include: 1 - there were limited activities for us to participate in (especially on sea days, which were many), 2 - Most of the activities were income producing for Royal Carib. (e.g. used to have free classes for jewelry making. There was only a scrap booking class for which there was a fee). 3 - Only one lecturer, who was good; however RCI scheduled him in venue much too small twice because there were practice sessions in the theater (couldn't hear or see lecture in alternate venue). Also, his lectures did not follow our itinerary. I understand this is how RCI scheduled the topics. 4- the daily compass was often inaccurate (passengers showed up for event, which never happened. 5 - The cinema was much too small; passengers had to arrive 1/2 hour before movie, and even then, couldn't get a seat (why not put these movies on the cabin TVs?). 6 - The TV stations were horrible. Only one US news station, which was very one-sided. There was confusion as to where, and when, the free drinks given to us as Diamond members could be served. Also the concierge did not have the ability to easily refer us to other bars for cappuccino, when the cappuccino machine in the Diamond Lounge was down (5-6 days of cruise). We have Diamond cards, we should be able to go to any bar (and/or the Gold Lounge) that has a cappuccino machine and swipe our cards for free coffee. The concierge had to get approval for this, and had to hand fill out tiny slips of paper for us to go to the Latitudes Bar. Concierge should have the autonomy to make independent decisions to make our experience more pleasant and stress free. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
The cruise got off to a rather rocky start as we sat in the embarkation lounge for 3 hours before being able to board. I have never had to wait this long and no reason was ever given by RCCL. This is unacceptable. The ship is clean ... Read More
The cruise got off to a rather rocky start as we sat in the embarkation lounge for 3 hours before being able to board. I have never had to wait this long and no reason was ever given by RCCL. This is unacceptable. The ship is clean and well kept but definitely needs updating. The decor is dull, mostly out of date wood paneling. The Windjammer feels very confining with low ceilings and a generally dark atmosphere. Cabin TV's are likewise old with poor picture and sound quality. Only one news channel is available (CNN) and isn't available for the entire TA cruise. Food quality leaves much to be desired - bland, tasteless, particularly lunch in the Windjammer. Hamburgers appear to have been fried to extinction yesterday and displayed in bowl of burger grease. I saw very few takers. Overall service is excellent in the dining areas and in the cabins. Lots of trivia games and other activities. The bridge game hosted by Armand was excellent and well attended. Astronomy lectures by Fred were another high point. I loved the entertainment; I had seen at least 4 shows before and enjoyed them again. Every evening saw dance bands in the Centrum. This was the first time I have seen lifeguards aboard a ship. Not much for them to do as the weather was cool and very windy for the entire trip. And RCCL does its best to discourage people from enjoying the pool area with a constant barrage of loud music from dawn til dusk. I think the execs in Miami could hear it from mid Atlantic. Perhaps the cruise director is paid according to the number of decibels produced. Disembarkation in Barcelona was good; security has increased with passport checks while at sea and upon docking in Barcelona. All in all an OK cruise with a nice complement of passengers and crew. So where was the captain??? Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
My friend and I wanted to do a repositioning cruise and this was an excellent deal. The Brilliance of the Seas was easy to get around but VERY noisy! There wasn't a quiet area (other than our cabin) where you could escape ear-pounding ... Read More
My friend and I wanted to do a repositioning cruise and this was an excellent deal. The Brilliance of the Seas was easy to get around but VERY noisy! There wasn't a quiet area (other than our cabin) where you could escape ear-pounding music. I found it most annoying and was certainly glad my cabin wasn't near the Centrum and even though they closed the fire doors each night, I'm sure those cabins heard the noise every time someone had to go through them. I was unimpressed with the food in the main dining room. It was just average and the lobster was the worst, overcooked and rubbery I had ever experienced. I was kind of surprised that by day 10, the assistant waiter still asked me what kind of roll I wanted (I had the same type EVERY day). The shows each evening were very well done and lots of variety. I would enjoy taking another repositioning cruise, but would try a different ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This was a last minute decision that provided a super bargain. The ship was great and we had great service on this repositioning cruise. The entertainment was fabulous. There were plenty of opportunities to get involved. Good shore ... Read More
This was a last minute decision that provided a super bargain. The ship was great and we had great service on this repositioning cruise. The entertainment was fabulous. There were plenty of opportunities to get involved. Good shore excursion options. The ship stopped at good ports of call. The only negative for this trip was the quality of the food. We travel because of the need for relaxation and for the total travel experience. Overall, Royal Caribbean (RC) provides for those needs. However, we have noticed a considerable deterioration in the quality of the food on the voyages with this last cruise being the poorest quality we have experienced on RC. The quality of service remains exemplary in all areas. The institutional style food in the dining room left a lot to be desired. There was little flavor in many of the dishes. Room service food was the poorest I have experienced anywhere in my International travels. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I wanted to sail on this class of ship to compare it to others. While it was fine, I do prefer the Voyager class and Freedom class more. Considering the age of the ship I was impressed with how well it was maintained. The cruise staff was ... Read More
I wanted to sail on this class of ship to compare it to others. While it was fine, I do prefer the Voyager class and Freedom class more. Considering the age of the ship I was impressed with how well it was maintained. The cruise staff was always friendly and helpful. My biggest disappointment was the dining room assignments at dinner time. There were many 10 person tables with two, four or five persons assigned to the table. Many 6 or 8 person tables were full. Why couldn't the cruise line spread the people more evenly around the dining room. I had spoken to others and they felt awkward sitting by themselves at tables with so many empty chairs. Seating in the Centrum is very limited due to its smaller size. Often times it was difficult to find a seat at Cafe Lattetudes because of it's location so many people used those seats to watch the activities going on in the Centrum. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Wanted to visit ports in Italy so travelled across from Tampa the trip across was relaxing and had lots of fun people. The crew provided so many activities that I hardly had time to sit and read. Shows and entertainment was the best we ... Read More
Wanted to visit ports in Italy so travelled across from Tampa the trip across was relaxing and had lots of fun people. The crew provided so many activities that I hardly had time to sit and read. Shows and entertainment was the best we have had in 25 cruises. Room was great though showers were tiny but did have strong flow of water. Not big drinkers but they had a package of all non alcoholic beverages which was perfect for us. Only waste was fresh juice as limited time available. Did 6 pm dining so we had time for evening activities. Food was very good and served by an excellent staff. Also did Chops which was okay. Had better on other cruise lines as there were few choice and steak was available for no charge in dining room to get your beef fix. Really enjoyed Giovanni's. Amazing choices and the steak I had their was the best. Went 3 times. Really fun if you have more than 2 as they bring lots of appetizers and side dishes. Plus the tray of deserts were small portions so have more than one. Enjoyed all ports. We used Viator to book and were extremely pleased. Got to Barcelona ready for 12 more days of intense ports. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
The price, the service, the destination was amazing. The room was so noisy. The room mate was very serviable, funny, and available. He gived to us a fresh bucket of ice two time a day. We got some problem with the embarkation to Puerto ... Read More
The price, the service, the destination was amazing. The room was so noisy. The room mate was very serviable, funny, and available. He gived to us a fresh bucket of ice two time a day. We got some problem with the embarkation to Puerto Rico, we was two ships in the same times and the time for going in it was very long and crasy. The food in the dinning room was excellent, but seafood was missing, they served only on time lobster. At each night they gived to us the french menu and we saw the crew do all is possible to help each of us. We was a group of 6 adults and every boy was vers happy. The night show was very great, various, excitting, duration (45 minutes ). The wine package was not available. All the time we got a lot of chair available around the pool or the updeck. Royal Carribean gived at each people a beautiful beach towel with the draw of Brilliance of the seas. Thank you. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Since the cruise was transatlantic it was a great way to go to a few ports and also travel over to Europe. The shows were excellent and there was a good variety. The Production shows had the best singers and dancers we've seen on a ... Read More
Since the cruise was transatlantic it was a great way to go to a few ports and also travel over to Europe. The shows were excellent and there was a good variety. The Production shows had the best singers and dancers we've seen on a ship. Whoever was handling the sound system was excellent because the music wasn't drowning out the singers. The service in the dining room was excellent and very friendly. If you're food was not to your satisfaction they were more then happy to bring something else. We have cruised many times with Royal Caribbean and like this smaller ship that they have. The centrum area is spectalur and offers a variety of entertainment each day. The balcony cabin was very comfortable and offered a great view of the ocean and ports as we arrived. You never walked done the hall where there was a crew member present that he or she didn't Greyson you with a smile and a friendly greeting. If you go on Royal be sure to visit their next cruise section to book another cruise. You'll get an onboard credit to use on the cruise you're currently on or you can apply to the cruise you are booking. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Relax time, on the sea, without Connections to Internet or cellphones - no calls from work. As Privat-Pilot i organized by myself the chartering Cessnas 172 in Tampa(FL) and Puerto Rico for flying by myself. Waiter's and Crew ... Read More
Relax time, on the sea, without Connections to Internet or cellphones - no calls from work. As Privat-Pilot i organized by myself the chartering Cessnas 172 in Tampa(FL) and Puerto Rico for flying by myself. Waiter's and Crew Staff are very friendly and try to celebrate a good Service. Not good: Some times ALL pools and Hot-Tubes wased closed completly. Bad weather, renovation - but why all in same time? Shore excursions by RCC are not my style. I organized my trips all by myself, from home, before we start, including flights and hotels. Hope, RCC will have in future more individuals Solutions fro bring bycicle or Harley with. Also we NEED in future is the Hop ON - Hopp OFF Option: May be still in town - not return to the ship, take a flight and come back to the ship in the next port. This Options is a MUST HAVE for passengers with Special interests. Next Cruise with RCC ist booked for Oct.2017: From Singapore to Perth. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Last minute deal in our email box caught my eye. The price, the "close to home" port and the itinerary added up "to let's take a chance on this transatlantic to Barcelona." This is our 4th TA, and the weather was ... Read More
Last minute deal in our email box caught my eye. The price, the "close to home" port and the itinerary added up "to let's take a chance on this transatlantic to Barcelona." This is our 4th TA, and the weather was less than perfect compared to our previous 3 TAs on Celebrity. They're was plenty of activities to fill the day, however, but missing was professional speakers with lively and entertaining subject matters. The evening entertainment was very good and the music groups around the ship were excellent. We are Elite Plus with Celebrity which gives us Diamond status on Royal. The perks were different between cruise lines, but evened out in the end. With Celebrity we each receive 240 minutes of WiFi. With Royal we each received one 24hour consecutive period. I ended up purchasing a package for the last 9 days. Discounts on laundry services was offered on Royal. On Celebrity they are free (2 bags of laundry each, plus dry cleaning and pressing). BUT, the evening Diamond member Happy Hour, was far superior on Royal - longer, very generous, themed receptions, plus 3 drinks per person to use in any bar on the ship. This was in addition to the reception, which was in The Colony Room, because there were so many Diamond members on board. Loved the ship overall, but wish it had more adult outdoor spaces. We had a Superior Cabin, which was very comfortable and great storage. Much better than Celebrity's Solstice class ships, where I have to stand on the bed to reach the cabinet! My Time dining was great. The dinner menu was varied and the food consistently good. The buffet was lacking variety, however. The Park Cafe is a nice alternative for breakfast and lunch. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Travelling with my husband who is confined to a wheelchair was very, very good on this cruise. Our room was perfect for accessibilty. Complimentary breakfast room service was exactly right. We were disappointed when we understood ... Read More
Travelling with my husband who is confined to a wheelchair was very, very good on this cruise. Our room was perfect for accessibilty. Complimentary breakfast room service was exactly right. We were disappointed when we understood that room service was no longer included. This was one of the biggest benefits to me as a caregiver... we however WERE TOLD THAT.. CONTINENTAL BREAKFAST IS STILL FREE... THIS WAS BEAUTIFUL FOR ME!!! No compaints at all! I would recommend this cruise to everyone, especially if you are travelling with someone who is confined to a wheelchair. Our dining experience was excellent, the Windjammer cuisine was always fresh and had variety. My only disappointment was the enrichment activities. Fred the Astronomer was excellent however he was not listed on the daily list of activities. My husband was very happy to have seen Fred on the ship (Len had taken Fred's Astronomy Class in the past on re-positioning trips). Cruise Critic Meet and Mingle also was a disappointment... no contacts were made except for Fred. All in all we had a wonderful holiday on this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Chose this cruise to top up cruise points. Main dining room food was the best I have had on RCCL for the last 3 cruises. CHOPS specialty food and service was superb Govani's left a lot to be desired with both the food and the ... Read More
Chose this cruise to top up cruise points. Main dining room food was the best I have had on RCCL for the last 3 cruises. CHOPS specialty food and service was superb Govani's left a lot to be desired with both the food and the service. Steak was burned, then the replacement was raw so had to send back a third time. Seafood gave the impression that it was a leftover. Our waiter made me fell like he wanted us to eat up and leave - like you would in a cheap diner. Also took an inordinate amount of time to serve coffee when it was requested. Definitely not do another trans-Atlantic. My best memories of an RCCL cruise ship was cruising on Oasis class ALLURE OF THE SEAS. I felt that Brilliance of The Seas was getting a bit tired looking and was in need of a refit. For example several chairs in the main dining room where not only thread bare, they had ware holes on the edges with frayed threads. All in all, I felt the crew was better than the ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Funny how we had come across this cruise. This was a post retirement cruise originally booked on a 22 day Holland American TA which cruised through the Mediterranean and ended in Rome. Back in August we were advised that the ... Read More
Funny how we had come across this cruise. This was a post retirement cruise originally booked on a 22 day Holland American TA which cruised through the Mediterranean and ended in Rome. Back in August we were advised that the Oosterdam's repositioning itinerary was switched to an Alaskan location and they offered to switch our booking with our discounted fare intact to a different ship. What we couldn't agree on what was the difference in accommodations from a private balcony aboard the Oosterdam to a Lanai (Balcony on shared deck) on the Westerdam. As it was we were left scrambling to find a new cruise with a different cruise line. Royal Caribbean most nearly duplicated the lost itinerary and it was only a couple of months prior to sailing as we started exploring airfares that my wife expressed an interest in a TA. It hit me then that the Brilliance was repositioning to Barcelona and was the same ship that we had been booked for the trip to the Med on. My wife admitted that she was concerned about the length of the TA and the number of sea days but after awhile she really grew to enjoy them and their relaxed atmosphere. Our longest voyages prior had all been 7 day trips. Sometimes it made getting off on excursion days debatable... (But make certain you get off the ship at least). It was a fantastic trip and if you have the time a really great way to enjoy a cruise ship and an affordable fare. We were cheated out of nothing regarding ship entertainment or food. If anything there seemed to be less pressure to buy drinks and what not. Overall a very relaxed atmosphere on board. If I had to list a problem, and certainly this was nothing that RCCL could have done anything about were the seas. Across the mighty Atlantic there is a great variety of weather to be encountered. We had a couple of rough days, nothing really dramatic just enough to make you a little unsteady on your feet with the winds out on the open deck strong enough to push you around a little. I learned two valuable tips though on this cruise that I would like to share. First thanks to all the Cruise Critic members. You're posts and tips are invaluable to the less informed cruisers. One night while perusing our roll call one of the members advised that he was giving up his aft cabin on Deck 9 as he was switching to a different cruise. I jumped at the opportunity, logged onto the RCCL website, found the cabin, contacted a RCCL travel agent and for just a couple of hundred dollars more had upgraded to the slightly more spacious aft cabin with the larger balcony and wake view. This only happened due to staying informed here on Cruise Critic. I responded to another post on Cruise Critic. A group of experienced cruisers who had cruised together previously had arranged to have a table in the MDR late seating together. A late cancellation opened a couple of spots and the post was asking if anyone wanted to join them. We took a chance and how fortunate we were. It was a delightful group of RCCL Diamond Plus members who sort of took us under their wings. But it was the diversity of their life's and backgrounds that made dinner such a fun experience each evening as we shared our days and our stories and our enjoyments with each others. We left having felt after 14 days we had made friends for a lifetime. So the next time you cruise, instead of leaving it up the Maitre D', try your own little social experiment and put yourself a large table together made up from the many fine folks of Cruise Critic. Be certain to change seats every evening, just to break things up and enjoy the best two hours of every day. All it takes is one person requesting the cruise lines to "link" your reservations and can be handled quite easily. Trust me, it is one thing you will never regret doing. This was supposed to be a review of our voyage on the Brilliance of the Seas and has turned into a review of Cruise Critic but it was only through CC that our stay aboard the Brilliance turned as memorable as it was. Overall our voyage was most definitely worth awarding Five Stars. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I've done a few TransAtlantic crossing with RC and other lines. Over the last ten years standards seem to have dropped. Cabin was fine if dated. TV system was old and outdated compared with what is available now almost everywhere ... Read More
I've done a few TransAtlantic crossing with RC and other lines. Over the last ten years standards seem to have dropped. Cabin was fine if dated. TV system was old and outdated compared with what is available now almost everywhere They stopped calling before delivery of breakfast to the room so the first you knew was a knock on the door, not a great way to wake up. I asked for a call and got it. Dining was disappointing, the food mediocre and service not great. One example - the cheese in breacrumbs was not crisp and the cheese cold and hard. Sent it back and it never arrived again, they had forgotten me! In the end we used the Windjammer Entertainment was fine, shows were great and the juggler a classic! But put French and Mime in one sentence and sorry I'm swimming for shore Activities: The main Compass activities list was nothing but auctions, special "bargain"offers, close out watch and jewellery sales, $5.00 T shirt offers etc., etc., etc. Bad weather affected the outdoor program but it is The Atlantic Ocean in April. The karaoke competition was won, not for the standard of the singer but because he made a spectacle of himself and involved a number of his "friend" as dancing "girls". The guy that came second was a "dead ringer" for Tom Jones and should have walked it. As to meeting, most genders were catered for except The Heterosexuals. - This service is becoming the Sitges ferry Ports were all really nice except Ibiza - very grubby. We still enjoyed our trip, it's the best way to cross the Atlantic, very relaxing. Not sure bout RC though, they seem to be losing their way as they get bigger Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
For our 50th Anniversary we wanted to take a Transatlantic Repositioning Cruise from Tampa to Barcelona; with a Back-to-back from Barcelona to Venice to Barcelona. We've been on this particular cruise several times and just enjoy ... Read More
For our 50th Anniversary we wanted to take a Transatlantic Repositioning Cruise from Tampa to Barcelona; with a Back-to-back from Barcelona to Venice to Barcelona. We've been on this particular cruise several times and just enjoy this area. This was a trip of a lifetime for us and we packed a lot of memories into these 30 days. Each day we tried to do something that we had never done before -- that was challenging on the days that it was too windy or cold to go out on deck. We played pool by the Colony Club and marveled at how we could sink EVERY ball with one shot (sometimes we sank all the balls before we even hit them.). It was a little rough once in a while and that helped the balls go to the far corners. We played Trivia, went to the shows, played cards with friends, went to Karaoke, hung over the rails at the Centrum to watch the dancers and the programs, read as much as we could, and ate at every opportunity (we actually concentrated on walking more on this trip so we went home lighter than we had started). There was always something to do. We had several exceptional crew members: Michael (our steward); Noel, Inuit and Irish in the main dining room; and Susie in Future Cruise Planning. One area of discontent for me personally was in food selections -- keep in mind that I am diabetic and have food allergies so my choices are always limited because of the situation. I asked Chef Gabrielle on the second day in the Windjammer if he could provide Sugar Free Pudding or Sugar Free Jell-O on the dessert bar -- Sugar Free cookies or cake don't count because carbs from flour and fat convert to sugar. It is possible that the cooking staff is not aware that "low-fat" and "lite" are not the same as Sugar-free. Those selections were never offered on the entire cruise. There were also a few issues with the menu items being mislabeled in the Windjammer. My main dining room choices were usually salmon and vegetables because the menu was heavy on shellfish additives (even Caesar Salad has anchovies in the dressing). Our head waiter, Noel, was very good at warning me what was appropriate to select. He was more careful than some have been because his little boy has severe food allergies also, and he knew what the dangers were. We are loyal Royal Caribbean customers that travel exclusively on RC. Even with that consideration, we received no introduction to the Diamond Lounge or the amenities there -- our keys didn't work until two days before the end of the cruise. We would have much preferred free Wi-Fi in exchange for the offered 6 drinks a day (not everyone does drink so why not offer a choice) . Other aggravations were created when the booking arrangements from Tampa Airport to the Hotel were messed up -- no one came to pick us up as arranged and eventually we found that the name of the hotel had been changed. The hotel was very nice and accommodating after we had been checked-in. By the time we left for the ship on the next morning, we were ready to relax and rest -- but we spent another hour at the terminal trying to get through the lines. When we departed the ship at the end of a 30 day cruise, there was no one to pick us up and take us to the hotel. We waited over two hours for our transportation before one of the young men secured a cab for us. The next morning when it was time to go to the airport for the return trip home -- there was NO TRANSPORTATION AGAIN to get from the hotel to the airport and we had to pay $55 euros for a cab. That is really unacceptable for a company that prides itself on "customer service". Our loyalty Ambassador was condescending when we couldn't understand her directions. The Centrum really isn't the place to position the Loyalty areas, customer service, or cruise planning. It is impossible to hear anything with the loud music in the foreground. We have already planned two more cruises, and it would be wonderful to find that some of these issues have been attended to by the time we embark again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We chose this cruise because we love to end up at home, no travel day at the end. We had been on ship in January and you can view my rave review on this site. We loved the whole experience. It was an eye opener, all the changes in a ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we love to end up at home, no travel day at the end. We had been on ship in January and you can view my rave review on this site. We loved the whole experience. It was an eye opener, all the changes in a couple of months and not is a happy way. The positives: The staff, the service, the cabin attendants, the food, and the entertainment all wonderful. Professional, attentive, and appropriate to audience. After that you may think, what more is there on a cruise that's important - well fed and entertained by genuinely engaged people. The issues: The se Asian/Dutch colonial culture has suddenly gone. The differentiation from other midstream carnival lines has gone away. Good food, good entertainment - princess or celebrity, or royal Caribbean. Holland has always had a little Dutch colonial kind of niche but it has gone. Since January! No more, are there curries or Indonesian entrees on the dinner menu, yes some times available at lunch on lido but ... no Indonesian or Phillip into crew shows., no modified chongsams on lady servers. No Indonesian lunch. Apart from the cultural shift - the activities - well, new "when and where" except it has a daily insert which really/sort of tell you what's going on- but it's not dated so if it gets mixed with the other paper you receive daily, who knows what's going on. The majority of activities were cash driven. Never seen so many sidewalk junk sales, spa seminars, jewelry eminars, slot tournaments, wine tastings and art auctions . But minimal enrichment, BBC earth was great, but no engineer or about the Panama Canal before transit?! No bridge, no crafts, no photo contest, not much of anything. There seemed to be midmanagement problems starting with cruise director, no culinary arts person, no mariner hostess. Cruise director - very personable but ... if holland still has gala nights, maybe the cruise director should have a tux to respect the passengers who like to dress up?, maybe he should announce when the ship is cleared instead of telling us to sit tight , maybe his staff should not be loud and rude in the show lounge during performances. In San Diego, the senior management including the CEO got on - one would expect a kick up in the ambience on board - not so much. Not one of them ever communicated with the guests - as a group they were loud, obnoxious and drunk in public. Next time go to Vegas where no one knows you! However that would align the significant cultural change, Botoom line, we are 4 star mariners and are wondering why choose holland as all lines have good food, good entertainment, and good service. It's the differentiators that make it unique. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. My husband is a diver and he has always wanted to dive Belize and Cozumel. Royal Caribbean did not offer a diving excursion in Belize (Even though it is one of the top diving destinations ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. My husband is a diver and he has always wanted to dive Belize and Cozumel. Royal Caribbean did not offer a diving excursion in Belize (Even though it is one of the top diving destinations worldwide.) He had to book it outside of the cruiseline. Getting on the ship at Tampa port was very well organized. We did not have our Sail Away documents printed out, but we were still able to board very quickly. The security and lines look very daunting, but move very quickly. I was quickly frustrated on board. it was crowded and we were hungry. There were many crew members about as we came on board, but none of them directed us until we started downstairs which was not yet allowed. We finally found our way to the Windjammer, but there was NOWHERE to sit. After wandering for several minutes, we finally found a table and took turns getting our plates. We ate quickly so as to free up the table for others. Once we were able to get to our cabin, we met our cabin steward, he was fabulous. We had dinner reservations at Chops at 6:30 and he was able to get my husbands suit pressed in plenty of time. Paulino was one highlight of our week. Chops was fantastic. We went back a second time. Our first day at sea was quite rough. Lots of people were seasick. We met our table mates and diningroom server that night. Martin was absolutely our favorite part of the trip. If I could request him on future sailings, I would. We stopped in Roatan, Honduras and Belize City with no trouble. Our excursions were as we expected and our on board experience was great. The water in Belize was rough and my husband's dive experience was not as great as he hoped...reasons to return. Our next stop should have been in Costa Maya. The captain tried, but was unable to dock. We were to have another day at sea. There wasn't much to do. We had a massage. It was fine, but not amazing. Cozumel was wonderful. Our last day at sea was quite relaxing. Saying good bye to Paulino and Martin was sad. Disembarkation was very smooth. The line at customs was very long,but if one uses a porter one uses a different line that is quite short. (Why doesn't everyone use a porter?) Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We chose this cruise as going to the Panama Canal was on my bucket list. My great grandfather had actually worked building the original canal and I wanted to experience it for myself. There were 4 of us adults in an extended balcony ... Read More
We chose this cruise as going to the Panama Canal was on my bucket list. My great grandfather had actually worked building the original canal and I wanted to experience it for myself. There were 4 of us adults in an extended balcony cabin on deck 7. The cabin itself was fine; plenty of storage for the 4 of us as I have come to expect with a Carnival ship. There were some dents and scratches but the cabin itself was very clean and the room steward was great; another think I have come to expect from Carnival. Embarkation in Tampa was fine. We had FTTF and were on the ship by noon. However, our luggage did not arrive until 8 pm! Here I will comment on the reported over 1,000 Diamond and Platinum members on the ship. I believe the staff overall during the 14 days were so overwhelmed with serving the perks of the Diamond and Platinum members, that the rest of us lowly Gold, Red and Blue card members got overlooked. We had YTD, but because there were so many people who requested early dining that could not be accommodated, it was practically impossible to eat before 8 pm in YTD without having to wait 45 minutes for a table. Therefore, we only ate in YTD I believe 3 times on our 14 day cruise. We were hungry before we could get a table so we just ate on Lido for dinner, since the menu was almost the same. Upon debarkation, the FTTF people were held along with the suite people in a private area of the ship, but were not told to debark until after luggage tag 5 was called. We weren't actually told to debark even though we had luggage tag #2, but someone heard #5 called and we all left. The person in charge of us royally goofed. Anyway, the actually debark in Baltimore was fine, except there were absolutely no taxis available by the time we got off the ship. It was in the 20's that morning and we waited probably 45 minutes for a taxi. So, debark in Baltimore was not very good for sure. Anyway, the fact that Carnival sold FTTF spaces with that many Diamond and Platinum guests was a big mistake, IMHO and I believe it was a waste of money. All of the ports were great! Weather was perfect in Cozumel, Costa Rica, going through the Panama Canal, Aruba, Bonaire and St. Maarten. We just took a cab to Paradise Beach in Cozumel, had a private tour in Costa Rica (awesome), took a cab to the Butterfly Garden in Aruba, shopped and went on the sunset cruise in the afternoon (awesome), rented a golf cart in Bonaire and went on a 2 beach private tour in St. Maarten. I will say that besides the Panama Canal being a highlight, we wish that Costa Rica would have been a longer stop. There was also an issue with getting off the ship in Costa Rica because everybody wanted to get off at once because of the short day. We had a wonderful tour, but with the ship being in port only from 11 am to 5 pm made it a very rushed day and it is such a beautiful country! It was very windy in all ports except for Costa Rica and excursions in Aruba and St. Maarten were cancelled. Since we only ate in the dining room 2 or 3 times, I cannot comment on the wait staff really. The food on Lido was just OK and we always could find something to eat, but the Chinese food was pretty bad and there were none of those boneless breaded chicken fingers to be found anywhere on the Pride. We even asked the chef, who told us in no uncertain terms that they would not be served on Lido ever and we were told to go to the MDR. So, we went to the MDR and were told they only had the chicken strips but we had to order them a day ahead of time. We did this a couple of times and made them a take out order, but they were very small and I think had a Panko crust that was very thin. I never heard so many people complaining about the food choices on a cruise for dinner as on this cruise. Many guests called them "weird food" and I would agree that there were some strange things on the menu. Lots of pork dishes, lamb, very little pasta, dry seafood, beef dishes were generally tough and very little chicken. I only saw turkey one night and it wasn't the night of the American Feast. Thank goodness for guys burgers, salads and fresh fruit! There was a noticeable lack of bar staff wandering around the Lido except for embarkation day. It was always easy to find a deck chair except for Serenity. The wait staff in the bars was pretty good, but it didn't seem like this was a drinking crowd because the bars were rarely full. The entertainment in the Taj Mahal was pretty dismal. The Playlist Productions were not good. We have seen these productions on other ships and on the Pride they did not met my expectations. The special acts they brought on because it was a Journeys cruise were great. Adam in the Piano bar was OK. The other singers around the ship were OK, but the young woman who sang like Joni Mitchell and played the guitar really got on my nerves. It seemed wherever I went, she was there singing. They had her and another singer on the Serenity Deck for a few hours a day also. It's supposed to be quiet on Serenity, IMHO. Nice string duo playing around the ship. Overall the Pride seems tired. It was very clean, but it is showing wear. Examples, there were many floor tiles loose in the Lido area that were not fixed, worn carpets, scratches and dents in various areas of the ships. The CD, Steve from Canada also seemed tired. The Fun Shops didn't have much of a variety of merchandise and it seemed like a lot of wasted space. We love the layout and different areas of the Spirit Class, but the Pride needs an update. The one shining spot for the Journeys cruise was the Academy of Fun classes run by Tom Parks. Very informative, and we learned a lot from him Tom is also very approachable and if you had a question or wanted further information, he was always around to talk to. The 80's throwback day was also fun. Overall, we had a great time and were not disappointed with the itinerary, which is generally why we choose a cruise. The other passengers were very friendly to us, but there were grumblings among them about the food, entertainment, condition of the ship and some were very rude to the staff. We would take the Pride again since it is only a 6 hour drive for us, but the normal itineraries out of Baltimore are not very great and it needs an update. We rate this cruise very good, mostly because of the itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Having taken several cruises on different Royal Caribbean ships, we found Rhapsody of The Seas to be below par when compared to other ships. We did not have any big problems but attention to little things was lacking. No coffee cups in ... Read More
Having taken several cruises on different Royal Caribbean ships, we found Rhapsody of The Seas to be below par when compared to other ships. We did not have any big problems but attention to little things was lacking. No coffee cups in trays, missing salt and pepper shakers on tables, empty milk containers, food trays in Windjammer should be replaced before they are completely empty so that people do not have to wait for the food to arrive, shower heads turned towards the mirror so that if you put the water on for the first time without looking up, you and the bathroom get a shower while you are still outside the stall. Had to look up every single time since three out of seven times the shower head was turned in such a way as to give you a shower before you get in. A whole lot of small things which become irritating after a while. We are usually not big complainers so this review is unusual for us.. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We did the back to back cruise starting from Barcelona: consisting of a 2 week Trans Atlantic cruise followed by a 1 week Western Caribbean cruise. Emarkation in Barcelona wasn't that well organised, we had a very long wait with no ... Read More
We did the back to back cruise starting from Barcelona: consisting of a 2 week Trans Atlantic cruise followed by a 1 week Western Caribbean cruise. Emarkation in Barcelona wasn't that well organised, we had a very long wait with no seating available for the less able guests. The disemarkation in both Miami and Tampa was a nightmare but this was due to the customs and immigration rather than NCL. We really enjoyed the laid back atmosphere of the Trans Atlantic part of the cruise and would highly recommend it as a relaxing care free holiday. NB the average age on board for this part of the cruise was 64 years . The Western Caribbean part of the cruise was good, however the atmosphere on the ship changed dramatically - surprisingly as the average age of the guests on board was much lower the ship was quieter in the evenings after 9.30pm - apart from the casino, which must have tripled the turnover of the previous 2 weeks... We found the food and the wine on board to be of a nice if not amazing standard - even the buffet was very acceptable. The staff were very helpful and polite and most were friendly. We were grateful we had a drinks package as part of our deal, as the price of drinks on board are very expensive for those without a package. We found the bar staff in city bar area to be very friendly and extremely knowlegeable about their trade. The staff in the Spinnaker bar didn't appear to take the same pride in their work, to be honest I am not sure if it was down to the waiters misunderstanding the order or the bar staff taking less care but lets just say when the order arrived it was often surprising but not always delighting. Overall we really enjoyed our time on the Jade and we would certainly sail with NCL again. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
I spent 21 nights on The Vision of the Seas starting with the transtlantic cruise to Barcelona and then the cruise from Barcelona to Venice. Captain Merek is amazing! He was the most visible and interactive captain I have ever sailed with. ... Read More
I spent 21 nights on The Vision of the Seas starting with the transtlantic cruise to Barcelona and then the cruise from Barcelona to Venice. Captain Merek is amazing! He was the most visible and interactive captain I have ever sailed with. He has a great sense of humor. He sang for us, did most of the announcements himself during the cruises and kept us informaed of weather conditions, birthdays, etc. , judged the Chopped contest and even stood near the gangway to personally say goodbye to every guest as we departed the ship on both cruises. It was obvious that he set the tone for the other officers, staff and crew. The head chef came around the main dining room and the windjammer asking for guest input. Guest services personnel, bar tenders, servers and stateroom attendants were all great. I anticipated poor entertainment on the crossing and I was totally wrong. We had excellent entertainment and additional activites. I certainly hope Captain Merek is promoted to a newer, larger ship soon and I look forward to sailing with him many times. If I had to find a negative, it would be the decline in the quality of the food, however, I have noticed it on the last few ships I've sailed, so it is not unique to the Vision. I completely enjoyed the crossing and highly reccommend it to anyone wanting to relax. The cruise from Barcelona to Venice was not quite as enjoyable due to the abundance of rude children (and their parents). I will stick to cruises that originate in the USA in the future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
worst service everywhere on the ship we have ever experienced. we have been on 9 rccl cruises. great captain merrick. but the food was terrible, entertainment was not acceptable,with exception to the vegas singer and the ventriloquist, and ... Read More
worst service everywhere on the ship we have ever experienced. we have been on 9 rccl cruises. great captain merrick. but the food was terrible, entertainment was not acceptable,with exception to the vegas singer and the ventriloquist, and adult comic. but that was for 14 days. cabin storage was good. cabin noise was very bad #3583. we also stayed on for the next 7 day cruise Barcelona to venice. that was even worse than the14.day. the itinerary was great!!!!!!!!!! rccl took all the english speaking stations off the tv. the 24 food options were uneatable. room service was awful if you could get them to answer the phone.thier food options were sooooooo nasty.we would prefer to go on carnival for now on. our last one in july was 5 stars. we were so unhappy we can not believe how it has gone down hill. embarkation was good. but we didnt get a stamp in our passport in venice when we got off. so we had alot of trouble changing planes in Amsterdam. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
I chose the Atlantic crossing to see if I would like being on the ship for that many days without a port call. I loved it. I did have early concerns because, being a fairly new cruiser, I unknowingly picked what was supposed to be a ... Read More
I chose the Atlantic crossing to see if I would like being on the ship for that many days without a port call. I loved it. I did have early concerns because, being a fairly new cruiser, I unknowingly picked what was supposed to be a "not so good" location for an oceanview cabin. It was on deck 3 all the way at the front. However,it turned out to be just fine. Our cabin steward was fantastic and treated us like we were in the luxury suite. I did not have any bad experiences with the motion of the ship or any unusual noises. The only negative (which turned out to be a positive) was how far we had to walk to the dining rooms and other public areas. Considering the amount of food I consumed, it was excellent for me to have to walk those extra steps. I was pleased with the size of the ship and all the interesting things they had scheduled to keep you occupied if you needed it. I didn't chose to use the wifi package and it was a big plus for me to be 'unplugged' for the days we were crossing the Atlantic. I could always find free wifi in each of the pots and catch up on what was necessary. I didn't book any shore excursions preferring to do my own thing which worked out just fine and was a lot cheaper. Overall, I'm very happy with the experience and plan to do another one next year. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
For an older ship the Brilliance was in good shape. Plus the staff was excellent. We felt like RC put gave their best to a repositioning cruise. Entertainment and food was not sub par for this cruise, in fact it felt like it was ... Read More
For an older ship the Brilliance was in good shape. Plus the staff was excellent. We felt like RC put gave their best to a repositioning cruise. Entertainment and food was not sub par for this cruise, in fact it felt like it was increased for this cruise. Embarkation was the smoothest in our 6 cruises. We took UBER from the hotel to the port. Seamless and saved money. People in the lobby were wondering how to get to port. UBER is the answer. For a smaller ship we did not feel like just a number. But part of the cruise. It rained in all the ports we went to. Puerto Rico, Malaga, Gibraltar and Barcelona. But it was fine in that 14 days on the ship was the adventure. Malaga seemed underrated, we really enjoyed the port. 10 sea days was great! Did not get bored but filled the days with rest, eating, rest, eating and rest. You get the idea!!!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2016

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