Number of Cruises: 1st
Cruise Line: Sun Cruises
Sailing Date: December 15th, 2002
Itinerary: Panama Canal
This being our first cruise we had nothing to compare it to but we thought that the holiday was definitely the best we have ever had. We have stayed in some nice hotels in the past with good facilities and food etc but this we definitely thought had the edge. We liked the idea of being in a different place every day and would strongly recommend the Panama Pleasures just because it is so different from most holiday destinations. The crew (mostly Filipinos except for the officers) were extremely friendly and always had time to spend a few moments talking with you, we felt this was a very happy ship and this was supported by other passengers who had been on other cruises. The ship was in good order and kept spotless by the crew, even when we docked and the paint was scratched by pier fenders by the time we returned in the afternoon they had been painted, obvious pride in the ship by this crew showed through. I especially liked when the waiters would finish serving dinner and then get the guitars out and start a singsong in the dinning room, in my opinion this was worth more than the major floor show from the stage. Our over all we can thoroughly recommend this ship, itinerary and type of holiday. That being said it must also be pointed out some things which we felt did have some room for improvement, this could have been a direct result of the recent my travel group financial difficulties forcing them to cut back to save cash. Every holiday I’ve ever been on there has always been a easily identifiable rep at the destination to smooth things through, I never saw any until I got to the ship in itself not a problem just different. This is still a value for money cruise as the prices are nowhere near those of most other lines.
Things that could have been improved :-
The ship is out to make as much money out of you as it can the drinks are at English upper market pub prices, if you like a tipple take the drinks inclusive package.
The crew had a snowball bingo twice a day and at the end of the week the jackpot stood at £1600 not bad since we calculated that the take for the tickets must have been around £8000 so we felt there could have been a bit more in the way of prize money.
Shore excursions were costly and it was far cheaper to get off the ship and arrange you own with the taxi drivers and guides, something which was easily done and we latched on to this quickly saving quite a bit, care must be taken in some ports of call so that you are not an easy target i.e. take your jewelry off and goodies from your bag or better still don’t take a bag.
The floor show lacked polish and need some better direction, with a mixed bag of guest acts.
Be aware that on the last evening your
baggage must be out of your room by 1am and you by 8am, this leaves you all day
to wander around with your hand luggage ( our plane left at 4.30pm ) Transfers
to and from the airport were slick but there was some disorganization at
‘Montego Bay Marine Passenger Terminal’ when you needed to check you luggage for
forwarding to the airport later that day.
Best thing the dinning room staff.
Overall I would do this again.