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Cruise Ratings
Sail Date: September 2014
My wife and I decided to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary with a cruise and stay holiday. It begins - We booked a week at Calize Island in turkey followed by a weeks cruise from Mamaris we later had to change the week to the Montana ... Read More
My wife and I decided to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary with a cruise and stay holiday. It begins - We booked a week at Calize Island in turkey followed by a weeks cruise from Mamaris we later had to change the week to the Montana pine resort owing to a friends wedding. At the time of the booking we was told that they would include a drinks package,hotel the night before and free parking as well as showing us our cabin in the middle of deck 3/4. when we moved the stay part of the holiday we was told that they would have to start the booking again and the offer on the drinks package is no longer included we questioned this saying that we have not moved the cruise but to no avail. We then asked if every thing else was the same our room double bed etc and was told yes not to worry. A few months later we received our tickets but for a totally different cruise on a totally different date.We then returned to the agents after being told that the hotel that we was due to stay in had gone bust and we will need to now pay for the parking and make other arrangements at our own expense. They then changed the cruise ensuring us that every thing was exactly the same. After boarding we found our cabin 2 single beds a port hole that you had to climb onto a shelf and crawl 5 feet into a alcove to see straight down into the sea this sea-view when booked cost £160, As it was our wedding anniversary i asked for a double bed every time we went into the shop and was on 3 occasions told that we had one. we complained to reception and was offered to upgrade at an extra cost. The first day was at sea so we made the most of a very poor ship dark and dingy and places where closed owing to a outbreak of the nureon virus the week before there was a further 3 cases whilst we was on board we went to bed at pm.The next morning at 5.30am we was woken up docking in Istanbul by the anchor dropping outside our room a experience we had everyday so we started going back to our single beds at 10 pm to get some sleep. On the 5th night we was woken at 1am by what sounded like a plane starting in our room we thought the ship was sinking it was the stabilizer this went on for several hours we could not sleep so at 4am we took our quilts and pillows and slept for a hour in reception there was already several customers there asleep. After returning to the Uk we have since complained to Thomsons about the room the view etc and to our utter amazement they have said that they are in no way responsible and that we did not pre book our room it is in the A to Z guide and we should have read it i pointed out that on 3 separate occasions we asked for double bed and was assured that this was the case I have since received a email apologizing for not being offered this service in the shop they forgot. The sea view was stated and we received a sea view although we had to do a assault course to vies the oily sea.They are also sorry that we was woken up early every morning and a very concerned that we was forced to sleep in reception. The staff overall worked very hard and where all polite and well presented the food was average and the Mistral restaurant was over priced the drinks where expensive and watered down in many cases there is not enough seats or sunbeds and if you like waiting in line this is the cruise for you. The only time to celebrate on the celebration is when you get off never again will we go with Thomson and i will actively try to persuade any one not to use them.   Read Less
Sail Date: September 2013
At the age of 67, we decided to go on our first ever cruise. Chose the Celebration as it sounded friendly and not too formal. From the moment we boarded, we were made do feel so welcome. Had cabin 658, it was spot on and our steward was ... Read More
At the age of 67, we decided to go on our first ever cruise. Chose the Celebration as it sounded friendly and not too formal. From the moment we boarded, we were made do feel so welcome. Had cabin 658, it was spot on and our steward was so lovely. In fact all the crew were wonderful. We chose to eat in the Meridian every night and shared a table with another couple we got to know. We had the same table each night. We can't speak too highly of our waiter, Tata. I wanted to take him home, he was so cute. Both he and our wine waiter got to know our names, their attentiveness was first class. Thoroughly enjoyed the Captain's Gala Night, Captain John was a really good people person. There was so much going on all the time, it's impossible to do everything. The shows were excellent, the highlight for me was the Queen show, the show team certainly delivered. The comedian was Dave Christian, very good, not a swear word in sight. Of all the bars, we liked Hemingways the best, great for pre dinner drinks. The cruise we did was Ancient Wonders, very interesting. We did a couple of excursions and did our own thing on the other ports of call. Because we enjoyed our cruise so much, we have decided to do another, next year. The Dream this time, we will look forward to it so much.   Read Less
Sail Date: May 2013
We are in our early 60's, and this is our 6th Cruise with Thomsons, and the 3rd one on the Celebration. We are becoming old hands at the cruising with Thomson game now, so for all those thinking about a cruise for the first time, ... Read More
We are in our early 60's, and this is our 6th Cruise with Thomsons, and the 3rd one on the Celebration. We are becoming old hands at the cruising with Thomson game now, so for all those thinking about a cruise for the first time, here's what we think, along with what happens on arrival etc etc. First off, we sailed from Marmaris, but I had to enter Istanbul, as Marmaris is not listed among the embarkation ports on Trip Advisor! We flew into Dalaman on 6th May from Doncaster, as I'm fairly tall and its a 4 hour plus flight, we booked extra legroom seats as they were on offer. It was an uneventful flight, and was on time taking off and landing. Upon landing at Dalaman went through the usual chaotic process of retrieving our suitcases, going through security and locating the transfer bus. Its quite a long transfer from Dalaman to Marmaris, this was the second time we had done it, and we were very pleased to discover on arrival, it had taken approx 30 minutes less (about 1 hour 20 minutes)than the last time. Upon arrival at the port you are met by a member of the ships entertainment team, who explains the registration process with you and directs you to the waiting reception staff. You fill in various forms, have your photo taken (for ships security purposes), get your boarding card (which is similar to a credit card)and has your name and cabin number printed on it. This is the most important thing you have while on the cruise, as it acts as your credit card for when you order drinks (regardless of whether you are on all inclusive or not) buy excursions or goods in the ships shops, and also acts as your passport. Every time you go ashore you must have this card with you, the security staff swipe it through their system and up comes the photograph that you had taken at registration, and it tells the system you are leaving the ship, the whole process happens in reverse when you reboard. This way the crew can look at the computer and tell at a glance whether everyone is back on board or not. You also need it to show to the Port security people, when you leave and enter the various ports you are going to. One other thing I recommend you do at registration is register your credit/debit card there and then, this is done so that at the end of the cruise your bank account is debited for all the drinks and excursions etc you may have bought, also you are given the opportunity to rent a safety deposit box (found in your cabins wardrobe) for the duration of the cruise, it costs (non refundable) 15 euro's for a weeks cruise (more for the 14 day cruise)and the cost is added to your onboard account. Tip:- return the safe key just before you go to bed on the last night of the cruise, the reception staff get very very busy on the morning everyone is leaving for home, and you could find yourself in a large queue to do something that takes less than 2 minutes. Tip:- You have to put your suitcases fully packed outside the cabin by 2 am on your last night on board, the crew then take the cases up on deck and unload the suitcases using a giant sling thingy when the ship docks the next morning. I take one of those disposable plastic razors in addition to my normal razor, and use this when I get up on the last morning, (the last night I also squirt a large pile of shaving foam next to the sink before packing the wash kit)then throw the razor away after shaving, we do the same with toothbrushes, we take cheap ones and simply throw them away after use on the final morning (put toothpaste on them before packing the wash kit). You will see lots of passengers trying to locate their suitcases on the quayside the following morning, just to put all their wash gear away, so my tips will save you the hassle. Well thats the preliminaries out of the way and now to the cruise itself. On the day you arrive there will be a life boat drill, which is compulsory for all new passengers (those on two week cruises only do the drill once), it lasts about 20 minutes or so and gets you familiar with your lifeboat station and the various alarms etc. After the drill the time is all yours, your suitcases should have arrived outside your cabin by now, when you initially arrived at registration, your suitcases are unloaded from the bus by the crew and you don't see them again(apart from putting your cabin number stickers on them that you are given at registration) until they arrive outside your cabin, so you can unpack. Most of the restaurants are open and you are free to go for a meal, there are hand cleaners outside every restaurant usually with a member of staff there to make sure the passengers use them, and they are also outside the toilets and again on boarding the ship. We have not come across a single case of the sickness and vomiting bug on any of our Thomson cruises, so well done to them for their vigilance. The first day at sea is to be honest pretty boring if you have cruised before, if not then its your chance to find out where everything is, and even browse among the onboard shops. You will find, that just like on shore Hotels, there is a shortage of sunbeds, and yes, even onboard you get the usual crowd who reserve sunbeds with their pool towels. This is pretty annoying but at least on the Celebration staff removed the towels if they had been left unattended for 45 or more minutes (the owners have to go to reception to get them back). There are waiters everywhere you go, be it the sun decks or the inside lounges, who are very efficient and will take your drink order etc (don't forget to carry your card at all times, as they will ask for this, and take it away with them while they get your order). The food is generally very good, and you can choose whether or not to use the self service restaurant or the waiter service restaurant for all the meals, our preference was to use the self service at breakfast and lunch, and the waiter service for dinner. There are stairs up and down to all the decks as well as lifts. We found the were times when the lifts took ages, so generally used the stairs if we were only going up or down 2 or 3 decks. There are launderettes on board, and for those worried about creased up tuxedos, evening dresses etc, an ironing service. The Captains formal dining night is normally in the evening of the first day at sea, (it is purely voluntary, if you don't wish to go then you use the self service restaurant for that night) there are two sittings 6pm and 8pm, a note will be left in your cabin letting you know which one you have been allocated to, Tip - if you would prefer to go to the other sitting then go and have a quick word with the Maitre'D in the waiter service restaurant, and he will exchange your invitation note for you. The formal evening begins with a photograph being taken of you with the Captain (at the entrance to the entertainment lounge), you are then shown to a seat and given a cocktail to drink. You have to wait in the lounge for up to an hour before you go for the meal, Tip - Wait awhile before you go to the reception to lessen the time you spend making small talk and generally sitting around in the lounge, you do not miss anything. The meal itself is just like any other evening meal in the waiter service restaurant except you are in your finery, the Captain though, does not attend, well he certainly hasn't in any of the 7 cruises (been on another one since this review)we have been on! First port of call was Istanbul, we decided to go on a morning only excursion, as we wanted to visit the Blue Mosque. The coach picked us up not far from the ship and off we went, the guide was very good, spoke excellent English and was very informative. We discovered from him that Istanbul has a population of 16 million, which I must admit I found surprising. The Blue Mosque itself was pretty impressive from a distance, even more so closer up. We also visited The Hagia Sofia Mosque, and the underground cisterns (used in the James Bond movie "from Russia with love"). It was an enjoyable excursion and one of the better ones we have been on. I won't say anything more about it, as it will spoil it for those thinking of going on it. Istanbul was I thought, a pretty impressive city, with numerous colourful trams going here there and everywhere, but we didn't feel confident enough to venture out on our own here! Port 2 was Mytilene, it was not very inspiring (the weather didn't help as it was overcast all day), and generally looked scruffy and dirty, so after about an hour wandering around we spent the rest of the day on board ship. Port 3 was Piraeus for Athens, we came here on our last cruise so didn't go into Athens(its very very busy)this time and instead went on an excursion to the Corinth canal. Again I won't spoil it by saying too much about it, we found it to be okayish but not one of the better ones we have been on! Port 4 Mykonos, Ah, the sun was shining in a cloudless sky, and this is what cruising is all about, a picture postcard setting with its whitewashed houses and windmills. The narrow streets were clean and everywhere had that warm feel about it, in short don't go on an excursion here, just catch the shuttle bus from the ship, and enjoy a very pleasant stroll around the town. See if you can find George the pelican! Port 5 Kusadasi, once again the sun was shining and it was nice hot day. Again we came here on our last cruise, when we walked around to Mouse Island, so this time we turned left out of the port and wandered among the shops, and then along the seafront to what looked like a new marina area. There was another cruise ship in port and the whole area got busy. There are lots of interesting excursions to be had here, but we opted for a quiet relaxing day instead. The evening entertainment is headed by a west end type stage show, which is normally excellent (seen more than a few now, so are starting to get critical I suppose), and has two showings a night for the early and late diners. There are also live groups, Soloists and Jazz musicians performing in the other lounges and bars. We found it very hard to get a seat in the main lounge when we come out from a show, as did plenty of other guests, its something which I have commented to Thomson's about in the past, when they send their questionnaires to me, as it has happened on every cruise. There is also a UK guest act one night each week, it is usually a comedian, who also does a late night show later in the cruise. For the cinema buffs, there is a proper cinema on the Celebration and its sister ship the Spirit, I don't know about the other Thomson ships apart from the Dream which definitely hasn't got a cinema. There are also two newish films shown every day on your cabins Television, along with the usual news channels. During the day there are all sorts of organised activities going on from Fashion shows to Ice sculpting to Quizzes etc etc. There is also a games room (jigsaws, board games etc) and a Library where you can go and borrow paperbacks. There is a room with electronic type games in it, a Spa, Gym, Kids club, Swimming pool, Whirlpool and a games court on the top deck for football, basketball etc. Among the ships shops is also a beauty saloon, and duty free shops selling alcohol and cigarettes, which I found to be cheaper than the Thomson's aircraft duty free's! Finally I recommend you leave a tip for your cabin steward, these people are amazing, they always seem to be there working away from dawn to dusk, and nothing is too much trouble for them. If you are new to cruising then I'm sure you will be pleasantly surprised, and the ages range from babies in pushchairs to old age pensioners, true the older people are in the majority, but there seem to be more 40 and 50 somethings cruising now than when we did our first cruises. We have been fortunate enough to go on numerous holidays since 1997, including a River Rhine cruise, a Beach holiday in Corfu, to 4 holidays on lake Garda Italy, Sorrento, Madeira, Austria 3 times, and a coach tour of Switzerland, but we enjoy the cruises most of all, which should tell you something? I hope this review (turned out far longer than I thought, so sorry about that), has been of some help to anyone contemplating cruising for the first time. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2012
No one who has sailed a modern cruise liner could give this 30 year old tub more than a zero rating. Our cabin, not on a lower deck, rattled buzzed and shuddered day and night in rhythm with the rough running engines. On modern ships ... Read More
No one who has sailed a modern cruise liner could give this 30 year old tub more than a zero rating. Our cabin, not on a lower deck, rattled buzzed and shuddered day and night in rhythm with the rough running engines. On modern ships you don't know you're moving, on the Celebration it's as though you're bolted to the engine! It was impossible to sleep with cheap plastic cabin fittings constantly buzzing and rattling. They were silent only when the ship broke down one night, leaving the ship drifting with no lights or power. It seems critical mechanical breakdown is not unusual on this ship due its worn out systems, and outdated engines that belch clouds of polluting black exhaust extending to the horizon. Bathroom fittings were chipped and mouldy, the surface of the "caravan" sink was peeling off, and the toilet vacuum system broke down. Drinking water had a pungent musty odour which tainted tea and coffee, so we avoided drinking it. Deck superstructure was rusting, and gates in deck railings not locked so they could be opened by passengers or children. On days at sea there was a drastic shortage of sunbeds, with passengers lying on painfully hard decks, or just giving up. Complaints raised on board were ignored and, we later discovered, not even logged. When Thomson later "investigated" they found no record of our concerns so dismissed them, even those relating to safety. Their attitude was that if all passengers didn't complain, you didn't have a problem. The crew, however, were generally brilliant, and the food good. We have enjoyed a number of cruises with other companies and never had to complain before, but Thomson really scrapes the barrel by overselling this tired old hulk. Avoid! Read Less
Sail Date: May 2012
Just returned off of the Celebration having been before was not expecting the glamour of the larger cruise liners but it still lived to our expectations if you are looking for a fun time without the glitz then would recommend this ship ... Read More
Just returned off of the Celebration having been before was not expecting the glamour of the larger cruise liners but it still lived to our expectations if you are looking for a fun time without the glitz then would recommend this ship which I understand will be Adult only in June. There were only a handful of children on this cruise anyway but in my opinion that will make it even better. If you like a drink then get the drinks package the only (Not so Good)was the bars kept running out of diet coke and tried to parm you off with coke zero while this is only a preference it made you have to ask again and waste a drink which they got a bit touchy about but soon resolved they also try to sneak the odd local brand drink in so continually had to specifically to make sure it was Bacardi and not Ron Blanca. Flights and transfer all OK and smooth although Marmaris is 1.5 hrs from Dalaman but it's not to bad. We had a suite on our first cruise with Thomson but as not available opted for deluxe outside which was slightly smaller but ideal for us Some dirty ports in Egypt but that's not their fault so if your not going to the Pyramids stay on the boat! Overall hats off to Thomson we had a great time we travelled with Cunard In April on the Queen Victoria I would rate the service atmosphere and entertainment far better on the Thomson Celebration Read Less
Sail Date: June 2011
We went as a group of 8 people on the celebration in June this year (2011) and had a wonderful time. Gems of the Aegean was its title for the cruise.   Returned home after a fabulous Cruise, on the Celebration Cruise ship, visited ... Read More
We went as a group of 8 people on the celebration in June this year (2011) and had a wonderful time. Gems of the Aegean was its title for the cruise.   Returned home after a fabulous Cruise, on the Celebration Cruise ship, visited Istanbul ,Dikili - turkey, Piraeus - Greece, Patmos - Greece, Bodrum - Turkey, Marmaris - Turkey, Mytilene - Greece, Kusadasi - Turkey, Mykonos - Greece,Rhodes - Greece. Ate & drank loads, had a fab time didn't want to come home, Lots of sunshine, plenty of swimming in the sea and much more!!       We found all the staff from housekeeper to the Captain very friendly and approachable, nothing was too much trouble for any of them.   On the second day the cabin hairdryer failed to work so i reported it to the housekeeper and within 2 hours it was replaced.       The food was first class, really spoilt for choice. We had all our evening meals in the Meridian restaurant, which was waiter service, 5 courses, and was truly scrumptious, many options on the menu to suit all tastes, even me!! I am a finicky eater but ha no problem in choosing what i wanted to eat.       One night we booked into the Mistral restaurant as it was a special occasion for a friend, 60th birthday, well what can i say, the food was out of this world, presentation was 1st class, couldn't ask for more, it was a 6 course meal   for the low price of £16 per head, if we had bought that meal in a restaurant at home it would have been £40/ £50 per head, the quality was outstanding.       I was pleasantly surprised with our cabin which was a double outside. two single beds which i found very comfortable, two huge wardrobes, three sets of drawers, and two bedside drawers, more than enough storage! The safe is in the wardrobe and was very hand and easy to use, well worth the £12 per week.       The bathroom was a little small but then again adequate for its use, a good shower, huge wall mirror, large mirrored bathroom cabinet, hand basin & wc.   Very clean and always topped up with bathroom needs, shower caps, soap, shampoo, tissues etc.       As you can see from the beginning of this review the ports we visited were numerous, three were tender to shore, which was great fun, the others just walk from the ship into the towns etc. Out of all the places we visited the most disappointing was Istanbul, seemed a very dour place, but not everywhere is perfect.       The entertainment on board was really good, the live shows were excellent, and the UK comedians that joined the ship at different ports were excellent, i laughed so much my ribs and jaw were aching!!       The atmosphere on the ship was great. everyone was very friendly passengers and staff alike, no problems whatsoever.       I could write a book on this experience but will finally say it was worth every penny, went fully inclusive which covered drinks too!! (had plenty of them))       The ship is of moderate size compared to some, having 1200 passengers but i felt this was great as you didn't feel overcrowded, always plenty of space, easy to get away from it all in the library, cinema, piano room - where the pianist & violinist were fantastic, so restful to listen to and unwind after a hectic day!       If you are thinking of such a holiday don't hesitate, it is wonderful, good value for money, and nothing better than being on a floating hotel and visiting a different port every day! Marvelous Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2010
Joined ship at Marmaris for Ottoman Treasures Cruise on Monday 16th August 2010. Firstly,advised of change to itinary and would be visiting Dikili and not Cannakale so no trip to Troy. 1st departure from brochure and although disappointed ... Read More
Joined ship at Marmaris for Ottoman Treasures Cruise on Monday 16th August 2010. Firstly,advised of change to itinary and would be visiting Dikili and not Cannakale so no trip to Troy. 1st departure from brochure and although disappointed we all hoped the only one. However, we were only at the beginning of a trip which turned out hugely disappointing for very many reasons. A major mechanical failure meant we did not sail until Wednesday. Then all day at sea to arrive in istanbul a day late. Sailed all day Friday so now on ship for 4 days out of 5 on a 7 day cruise that was meant to have 5 ports of call in addition to Maramaris. we were advised stops at Dikili and Rhodes would need to be abandoned thus leaving Santorini on Saturday and Kusadasi on Sunday before returning to Marmaris at the end of our cruise. However, we never made it to Santorini as the weather meant we could not anchor. You may think that Thomson can do nothing about this until you learn the ship hardly ever gets into Santorini, however, Thomson keep it on their itinary as it presents a very great attraction to people thinking of which cruise to book. This announcement was made when a lot of [bored]people were in the cinema at the time [which does not receive ship's announcements] and some of whom then woke up on Saturday to discover they were in Kusadasi and not Santorini.Rhodes was then visited on Sunday having previously been cancelled. In addition to the above obvious disappiontments the infrastucure on this ship is nearing the end of it's useful life. The toilets were out of operation for 3 hours on the Monday 16th and are a persistant problem. The lifts are regularly "Out Of Order". On Saturday while at our dinner the generator broke down. The Meridian restaurant started to become extremely hot and uncomfortable while we spent an hour trying to eat our food in the semi-darkness of the emergency lighting.This lasted for about 1 hour. my wife and I have cruised many times with Thomson and have never found fault with the waiting staff in any of the public places. However,on this trip the staff in the Broadway Show Lounge and Hemingway Lounge were always unsmiling and sometimes were simply not there.[If you are AI you will not get your money's worth]. On a positive note the food is good [strangely much much better in the buffet than the service restaurant], the shows are mostly very good,energetic and inventive. The weekly comedian is a bit of a let down--asking if there are any Welsh people in and then making a sheep noise is pathetically not funny.[I am not from Wales]. Finally, while my wife and I do not mind the more relaxed approach to any dress code we do object to the relaxed approach by ship's staff to some unacceptably yobbish behaviour by a very small minority aboard. Example --a young boy keeping the lift doors on the reception deck open as an adhoc goalmouth while his father kicked a full size football at him--we found this amazing behavior on a ship. As I have said this behaviour was by a few and did not detract greatly from our holiday in itself but was magnified in it's effect as a consequence of the extra unexpected time spent onboard. Overall this was a very disappointing cruise due mostly to this ship's shortcomings and the unpleasant dispostion of too many of the staff. [perhaps they were also impacted upon by people being on the ship when normally they would have been ashore]. However, we shall not return and hopefully you can make a more informed decision now before you consider booking. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2010
Monday, Marmaris - TURKEY Welcome to hell. We where due to set sail at 11pm. The engines failed. we had a geneartor fault. The Tugs... oops sorry ships air conditioning failed. we where stuck in port over night. With a very hot and ... Read More
Monday, Marmaris - TURKEY Welcome to hell. We where due to set sail at 11pm. The engines failed. we had a geneartor fault. The Tugs... oops sorry ships air conditioning failed. we where stuck in port over night. With a very hot and smelly ship (will explain the pongs later) with constant vibration. 2 Tuesday, We where supposed to be at Sea. Guess what we are still in Turkey. We are not allowed off the boat due to a life jacket demo. Same the life jackets are dirty and greasy. Half the passengers didnt bother turning up... even though we had the annoying cruise director Keith Maynard telling us its a requiremwnt of a Martimime law... isnt sailing a more important part of the cruise...? oh silly me! Day 3 At Sea Right heres the basics had to fight to get a sun lounge. We had the towel police taking things away if you had moved out of your chair for the loo or for food or too attend the cruise highlights talk. We attended the talk in the broadway lounge... the trips are overpriced and very short in time. but the show lounge has an incredible smell of mould and chip fat (think the chip fat smell is due to the lido in the next room) Day 4 Istanbul - TURKEY the ship needed another repair so we where stuck again until 5 in the morning the following day Day 5 at Sea Do you yearn from the days of Hi Di Hi - guess what you are in luck!. at 1.30 we have an a quiz at 2pm music by the inside entertainment team at 3pm ice carving at 4pm fruit carving at 4.30 cocktail making at 5pm we have Bingo at 6pm i wanted to jump overboard!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Day 6 we are in In Kusadasi, cant fault Ephesus, the Mediterranean's best-preserved classical city. The marble pillars of the Library of Celsus support intricate friezes and sculptures dont do the ship tour hire a local taxi outside the port near pigeon island its about 60 euros per cab and the driver will wait for you. day 7 rhodes nice but so bored i want to come home. ps the toilets in all the cabins stopped working tonight and the air conditioning failed in the cabins. just for information we missed out a couple of ports due the captain problems with the ship . i am annoyed and upset and i am seeking comphensation. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2010
We recently returned from a lovely cruise aboard the Thomson celebration sailing From Marmaris around Turkey and the Greek isles however it was marred by two very poor coach transfers from dalaman airport to the port of Marmaris. Be ... Read More
We recently returned from a lovely cruise aboard the Thomson celebration sailing From Marmaris around Turkey and the Greek isles however it was marred by two very poor coach transfers from dalaman airport to the port of Marmaris. Be warned if you plan on booking this particular cruise with Thomson as the coach transfers we experienced as did other passengers according to the number of complaints we heard from other passengers aboad ship were very poor. Our outward journey was barely bearable due tot he poor air conditioning on the coach several passengers asked the driver to trun the air con up as it was to hot and stuffy but the driver kept saying it was on full but spoke virtually no English!!! Several passengers we spoke to told of their coach breaking down on route, this actually happened to our return coach and a friends coach the same day. We had barely left the port en route back to the Airport when the aircon stopped completely and the coach ground to a halt, no windows to open and 100+ heat of the midday sun made it unbearable on the coach, Think greenhouse on sunny days and little better trying to find non existant shade on the side of the road. Thomsons do not have reps on these coach journeys and the drivers speak no English so you feel abandoned and helpless, I felt so ill due to the heat I flagged a taxi to the airport at a cost of £80 as did other passengers we know, on our way in the taxi we passed another coach broken down at the side of the road and friends met on the cruise lugging their cases down the shoulder of the road. Thomsons say they do not have an issue with the coaches and say that nothing untoward happened that day and appear to be happy with the service or lack of it the provide on these journeys. Incidentally we enjoyed our Thomson cruise so much that we have already booked the sister ship for next year.......just not from Marmaris Read Less
Sail Date: July 2010
We decided at short notice that we would try a cruise for the first time to celebrate my 60th birthday. As neither my wife or I had been on a cruise before we were unsure of what to expect, but thankfully were pleasantly surprised. ... Read More
We decided at short notice that we would try a cruise for the first time to celebrate my 60th birthday. As neither my wife or I had been on a cruise before we were unsure of what to expect, but thankfully were pleasantly surprised. Booked up two weeks before departure date with cruisedeals on the internet. Managed to get a good deal for the Ottoman Treasures cruise with Thomson aboard the Celebration. As it was short notice we could not get flights from Scotland but drove down to Manchester the day before, stayed at the Premier Inn for 1 Night including airport parking for the week for about £75. Good move as we had an early check in next day monday 5th July. Would use Premier again. Airport carpark 2 minutes from hotel, shuttle bus to airport 5 minutes from carpark. Picked up tickets at Thomson desk Terminal 2 no problems. Check in queue for Thomson at Manchester was very busy, took us over 1 hour to check in. They have express self check in terminals which you can use to avoid the busy queue, think it costs £5 or £10 per person. I did not notice this option until after I queued for 30 minutes but would have given it a go if I had seen it on entering the airport. Flight left on time, arrived 30 minutes early. Baggage reclaim at Dalaman a bit of a scramble and clearing customs took forever. Almost 90 minutes from getting off the plane to reaching the bus park. My wife says I always pick the wrong queues. Anyway we are on our way. Transfer from airport to Marmaris and check in at port took about 2 hours. This went very smoothly and your luggage is delivered to your cabin very quickly. Booked a deluxe outside cabin on deck 8 - as first time cruisers we had nothing to compare it against but were more than pleased with space, facilities and cleanliness. The ship itself is quite small compared to some of the giants we saw along the way, but a lot of the folk we met on board preferred the more personal atmosphere which seemed to prevail in all areas of the ship. At around 1200 passengers and over 500 crew you are well looked after. Dining options were the meridian waiter service restaurant, or the lido self service restaurant. There was also the option of the Mistral for dinner which was available at extra cost, never used it but looked quite good. We ate mainly in the self service lido restaurant as my wife seemed to have plenty of vegetarian choices. I liked this style of dining as it was very relaxed and you could try a wee taste of different things. Again I cannot compare food choice or quality with other cruise liners, but you must be very hard to please if this does not impress you. Great value, good quality, plenty choice. Thanks to M&S for the expandable waist trousers. Never really noticed much of what was going on as far as on board acivities although we took part in a quiz one day. We tended to go ashore early, and return to ship and sunbathe in the afternoon. The crew on board the Celebration are in the main from the Philipines. Lovely people. We were treated like royalty and they just have a natural friendly nature which made you feel really welcome. I thought before I went that I was in for the Holiday Camp cabaret but was quite surprised that I enjoyed all the shows I witnessed. The talent is of a high standard. On the downside I tried to watch a couple of world cup matches in the cinema. Signal problems and poor picture quality made it impossible to enjoy. Never went on any port excursions, heard some folks say they were overpriced. We went ashore at all ports with the exception of Canakalle as it was raining. Most places you just need to get off the ship and wander around the local area. You can get off the ship in Istanbul and jump on a tram which takes you past the main tourist spots, blue mosque, grand bazzar etc. Really interesting city full of history, all you need is a nice smile and a few words of gaelic to ward off the carpet sellers. Coming home again no problem from ship to airport. At Dalaman airport beware off rip off bar prices. No prices on display - gave me my drink then tried to charge £10 for a beer. Haggled the guy down to £7.50 Anyway we had a great time and our only regret is that we should have done this years earlier. Hoping to book another week october/november on the Destiny. Read Less
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