Number of Cruises: 1
Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean
Ship: Voyager of the Seas
Sailing Date: 2004
Once in the airport Royal Carribean takes over and get ready for the time of your life. We were bused from Fort lauderdale to Miami and the trip was good. We had to drop two passengers off who were departing on Saturday and we got to see where we would be leaving from plus the Vision of the Seas was sailing that day and was docked. So seeing was believing this class of ship is incredible just to look at. After that we were taken to the Hyatt regency and the accomodations were wonderful. Royal Carribean has a desk in the lobby and they tell you get there at 9:00 a.m. to geta bus assignment, but the desk person at the hotel said Royal Carribean usually gets there at8:30 a.m. and they did. We were ont the first bus and it took us to the pier at 12:30 but by the time this driver got all the luggage loaded we got there at about 1:35 p.m. and were on the boat at 2:15. After walking to our rooms and putting our carry on stuff away it was off to see the ship. Prepare to be impressed if you have never cruised before because this ship is huge. Our first stop was Windjammer and the buffet is enourmous. To answer the most asked question was it impressive? Yes. Was it the greatest food I ever ate? No. Was it endless and filling and more than I expected? Yes!! Was the service great from the person who welcomes you everyday to the person who hands you your plate and silverware to the person who serves you your tea and lemonade? You bet!!! Upon finishing lunch we proceeded to the pool bar and ordered our first round of drinks and purchased a soda card for my wife. While they do not offer a drink card they do have a daily special and this is the drink you learn to take advantage of. Also let it be said that you can buy a bottle at the duty free shop and tell them you are taking it with you and they will add $5.00 to the tab but you have the bottle in your room. Your wife or your husband can get a sode on their soda card and you can have your drink before dinner or your night cap right in your room or on your balcony.
First day musts Make a reservation a Portafino's after you find out when your formal dinners and your semi formal dinner is. Next must is call room service and tell them when you would like breakfast brought to your staeroom. I would only advise doing this if you have a balcony or deck as the room space is tight and there would be no reason to do this otherwise unless you don't like eating with the masses. The welcome aboard parade is impressive especially after a week on the ship and you realize walking can be a challenge at times because of twhat our Captain described as the "Motion of the Ocean". The opening parade has a lot of entertainers walking about on stilts if you can believe it. The Russian Skaters are a husband and wife team and at one point he spins her on his head while skating while the ship is moving. Trust me you will love the ice show as well as all the other shows. There are lots of things going on, that make doing it all impossible. Read the compass the night before and write down what you want to do the next dat, where it is, and what time it happens.
Now make it your business to get there. They really push pictures that they take of you so my addice is pick and choose ahaead of time the pictures you want. We chose the formal pictures, the boarding picture, a table picture and one or two others. The art auction was of no interest but they really push this almost to the point of annoyance but hey profit is not a dirty word and they need to do what they must. Choose your excursions in advance and pay for them online. If it is inclement weather and they must cancel your activity your Seapass account will be credited back before the end of the day. They room attendant is incredible int hat she was there when needed and invisible when not needed. I can only speak for my attendant but I am sure they all are equally professional. The towel animals are something to see and you will. They even have a class to teach you how to fold the towels the way they do.
Now comes the best part the dining experience. Your waiter, headwaiter, and assistant waiter will make your dining experience as good as it gets. From daily suggestions to presentation, to deshelling shrimp to cutting lettuce to scrapping the crumbs off the table prior to dessert to peppering your food,if this does not impress you then you just do not want to be impressed. I did not have a show on the ship that was not worth seeing. Do not worry about the eating because all the walking you do more then burns off the calories. Endulge and enjoy. The Grand Gala Buffet is a sight to see. They let you in one hour before it begins and it begins at midnight. Do not miss this event in its entirety. Try not eating too much that night. Bring your camera.
They ports of call were the least exciting parts of the cruise for me. The ruins are worth the trip but they ones in Costa Maya do require some travel and you do go through a jungle and are warned about snakes and Red Ants. This is not a joke. Do wear good walking shoes that day and watch where you are stepping. We used most Port of Call Days to Use the Adult Pool, The Jacuzzi, and play Mini Golf, as well as eat at Johnny Rockets another must. Attend the show on the Ports of Call if you are buying something other than the standard souvenirs. If you are not buying a Diamond or a Watch this show or presentation should be skipped as it can get pretty wordy. Way more information than the average human can consume.The fifties, sixties and seventies show is another good one. The Marriage game is a must see and the Scavenger hunt should not be missed.
Backstage tour is a good one as you will more appreciate the performances you see once you see the balance these performers must have to do these shows. Gambling is great in the Casino Royale. I did quite well but you must pace yourself as you can lose a lot real fast if the luck is not with you. Slot tounament and Blackjack Tournamemnt are worth it if you like casino games. This stays open till the wee hours so don't be in a rush to get there early. Its never really impossible to get on a game or slot so take your time and enjoy the convenience of a casino within walking distance.
I had the time of my life and my wife echos those sentiments. For first time cruisers I am three days from leaving and at times I still feel like I am Rocking but I am told this will get better on a daily basis. If I had to point to a negative it would be the pictures they try to shoot of you everywhere you go. Some of the push on the Auctions get old after a while. Overall with the exception of one or two bartenders everyone seems to be loving what they are doing. Enjoy your cruise and remember sleep when you get home and do as much as you can.