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Thomas Jaramillo

Age: 38

Occupation:Engineer

Number of Cruises: 12

Cruise Line: MSC Cruises

Ship: MSC Poesia

Sailing Date: 2013-03-25

Itinerary: Caribbean

1. All activities on board had been cancelled with the exception of single games of Bingo (which had to be paid for) and 1 or 2 dance lessons. We did partake in the dance lessons, but the concert equipment took up half the dance floor. People were having to dance around tables in the common areas of the lounges. When this very limited time for activities was available.

2. All nightly entertainment was nonexistent until the last night when one single show was held.

3. Every lounge and main Carlos Felice theater was required to show badge identification for entry which was not available for purchase to regular cruisers - when there was entertainment going on. Not that we had any interest in heavy metal rock anyways.

4. The pool area had been blocked off on our first day departing due to the band completely taking over the one of the pool areas with their dangerous scaffolding and poorly wired stage and equipment

5. Throughout the stage equipment being on board, they navigated bad weather and high winds. I rightfully feared a speaker would come unhinged from the rickety attachments and kill someone below or fall into a pool and electrocute someone. They were held with nothing more than plastic C clamps. One night, MSC made the right call to shut down a show (which of course we weren’t welcomed to see as well) and shut it down due to high winds, but still allowed people to walk the decks. MSC is extremely lucky no-one was killed or injured and took unbelievable risks in allowing some 'fly by night concert' company to take over and run the ship this way. With no regard to health and safety.

6. Smoking and doing drugs were common in every area of the ship. I feared fire safety and extinguished lit cigarettes on deck more than once. My daughter stepped on a still warm cigarette while barefoot by the pool. Cigarettes were seen being flicked overboard constantly. The times we tried to sit and have gelato together as a family at the ice cream shop was interrupted by cigarettes and marijuana. We were constantly leaving areas to be forced back into our room as a family because of the disgusting behaviors of the other passengers. Even then we couldn’t enjoy our balcony in our room because of smoke from the other rooms on balcony decks. What happened to the designated smoking areas? No-one was following them. Eventually MSC put out ashtrays at tables because they could no longer control it and must have noticed that health and safty were again at risk.

7. Our 9 year old normally looks forward to the kids club. The first day we took her, we stopped to check on her. To our dismay, the room was packed elbow to elbow. With 300-400 kids in one room there were too many to count. When we asked why they were stuffed in there, we were told the common areas are all taken over by the bands so they were not allowed to take the kids anywhere else as they normally would. They changed this on the final day after our complaints and took them for ½ hour to a disco. That’s all. None of the nightly ‘watching shows in the theater' because those were cancelled, no special dinner options, everything was cancelled. When we picked up our daughter, she was grateful to leave the kids club and said she never wanted to go back.

My family was absolutely miserable and bored almost every single moment of the trip. We felt like prisoners on the ship and hated every single minute of being stuck with loud obnoxious passengers who we shared no interest with.

It’s fine for MSC to choose to have a themed cruise, but I would have never knowingly booked this themed cruise with a travel agent who was also unaware – especially paying what we did. The clientele who were aboard were rude, obnoxious and made comments to my 4 children one that included explicit sexual advances. How dare MSC allow this to happen by selling us one thing – a family cruise - and giving us something totally different!

This was our family’s spring break and time together does not come easily. We flew and drove over 2,000 miles combined to have everyone together to go on an MSC cruise. MSC can’t repay our time or money spent getting to the “cruise to the edge”…. of Hell!

To top it all off, every single day with the exception of 5 hours on the last day, it rained. This made the common areas even more important to have access for and to do activities. We were relegated to our cabin to sit and watch TV which was something we could do just as well at home for free and with more comfort and space

The only way to rectify this is a complete ‘do over’ on another cruise for my family. MSC wasted our precious family time and money -- now the question is if they are ethical and willing to fix it with a completely new cruise itinerary that is the proper MSC cruise we bought and paid for.

Good as in the past.

Good as in the past. With the exception of not being able to use the balcony.

Horrible.... not as before. Paid full fare for cruise party of 8, 4 of which were kids with no activities. I felt bad for the staff having to put up with the drunkards of the concert cruisers, and then with the complaints of the duped normal cruisers. Bad planning and bad decision by someone in the upper ranks of MSC!

Average. Bad weather added insult to injury but we were happy to get off of the ship for a while.

I will report back the MSC response when I am contacted. We sent a letter to Albino Supino di Lorenzo Director of Cruise Operations & Shore excursions at MSC Cruises USA Inc and Nicola Gargiulo. Another person we knew on the cruise was offered $100 for the trouble. I know the likely hood of a replacement cruise is unlikely, but it's the principle of buying this cruise and being blindsided with a rock cruise. It made for a horrible vacation and we will not sail on MSC again because of this. Had they notified me that the boat had been partially chartered and there would be no entertainment I would have rescheduled, but I was not given that choice BUYER BEWARE!!

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