posted on Feb, 10 2010 @ 02:38 PM
I just got back from taking a Royal Caribbean Cruise. While I had a lot of fun, I also had some unpleasant experiences, that I really didn't expect
from a fairly highly rated cruise line....
1) Lack of Activities: It seemed that there wasn't much going on, onboard the ship, even while out at sea. While there was something going on each
hour, often, there was ONLY that one thing, and if you weren't interested in it, there wasn't any alternatives. When we took a Disney cruise a
couple of years back, we often had trouble deciding which activity to do, as there were many options.
2) Lack of Courtesy: This was in many areas of the ship. I will have to state the exception, the wait staff, cabin attendant, and entertainment folks
were top notch. However, we had lots of discourtesy from bartenders, and shop clerks...ranging from simply ignoring you, to telling you to order a
drink or give up your barstool...(don't think so friend, I paid my fare, I'll sit where I like).
3) Lack of Reaction when Bad Things Happen: Due to weather, we couldn't stop in Coco Cay, and had to spend another day at sea. I realize they can't
control the weather. However, when a similar thing happened on Carnival, my friends got a 25% discount on a future cruise (which they used, so it was
a good business move on Carnival's part)...and Carnival is like the cheap-o depot of cruise lines! When a similar thing happened on Disney (an
excursion was cancelled due to weather), they gave everyone who signed up for it, a $50 shipboard credit to use. Royal Caribbean could offer
NOTHING...even after I later found out that they've been unable to stop in that port for over a month, so they really should have expected it.....and
communicated this upfront.
4) Lack of a Contingency Plan: Well, I should say a lousy contingency plan. For the day at sea, the activities were just as sparse, and even more lame
than the choices the other days. All of the really fun things, like a couple of dancing activities, karaoke, etc., were few and far between, and often
later in the evening. For adults who have kids, and are used to an earlier bedtime, kind of sucked for them, as they rarely could stay up that late
and party like some of us.
The weather really was the major nemesis. We all had a private boat chartered in Nassau, but couldn't do it because of the wind and water conditions,
so that was cancelled, and of course, the whole day at Coco Cay was cancelled. Still, I feel that if the cruise line stepped up and was more proactive
in its response to the problem, a lot of ill will could have been spared. (And I'm certainly going to write a letter to corporate detailing the
experiences and observations)...
I think I'll stick with Disney next time. They just know how to do it right (and I have no desire to lose money in a casino anyhow, lol)... This
cruise started out as an activity for a friend's b-day, and also an anniversary thing for the wife and I...but I'm not too keen on this cruise line
going forward... Just thought I'd share the insight.