I'm Cured of Cruising.
Royal Caribbean Voyager of the Seas cured my desire to ever cruise again. I had been on 3 other cruises previously: Holland America to Alaska and two Carnival cruises to the Caribbean. I had NO complaints with those cruise lines. For what it's worth, here are my observations of this past week on Voyager. Please note that it wasn't a total loss. We did try to make the best of it and I kept a smile on my face the entire time. I was kind to all the personel on board even though I really wanted to strangle somebody. I hope this helps other people dreaming about a heavenly cruise experience on Royal Caribbean to go into it with their fantasies tempered with a heavy dose of reality. Here goes:
Check in process was long and unorganized. Holland America was much more organized.
Three inside rooms are very small. Our Jr. Suite room was okay, with the balcony.
Our tub and commode were dirty when we arrived.
The bathroom light was flickering on and off. I had to call maintenance.
The internet (using my laptop) never did work for me, even though I stood in a long line at Guest Services 4 times to try to figure out why. No one could help me.
Guest service was understaffed.
The guest services person took my reservation for My Time dining, and then never reported to the dining room. They did not have us on the list.
The safety drill was needful, of course, but the standing and waiting was far too long. I got in some real pain standing and waiting so long. They were waiting on people who never showed up.
The internet is antiquated, slow, and expensive. It only worked once using the ship computer. It never worked using my laptop.
My 22 year old daughter was treated rudely by two of the staff.
Too many things you have to pay for on the boat now. My son took his family to Johnny Rockets. No prices were posted. No prices were on the menu. They assumed it was all paid for, like the main dining room and Windjammer. They were very surprised when they were handed the bill. Why wouldn’t the prices be posted on the menu?
All this junk on board is way over priced. Water? Wine? I buy the same cheap wine at the grocery store for 1/3 the cost.
We can’t take food off the boat for an excursion. I was told by RC chat online a few days ago that we could and the kitchen would fix us box lunches to take with us. That was completely wrong. They won’t at all. I can see safety reasons bringing food back, but not getting off. We paid and paid and paid for this cruise, but we can see it’s never enough. Never enough means Never Royal Caribbean again, ever.
Taxi area for Cozumel very congested. Horrible and scary.
My son got ripped off in Cozumel. He and his wife (never cruised) were unprepared for the way the vendors act. He was tricked into buying something that he did not want. He didn’t know how to stand his ground. This is not Royal Caribbean’s fault, of course, but it’s just another aggravation.
The tender ticket saga for the boat ride over to Grand Cayman was a NIGHTMARE. I went early (45 minutes early) to get in line at Cleopatra’s Nook. There were already many people there, sitting around in chairs calling that the “line”. As I moved toward the back of the room to position myself in what was a poorly defined line, people started filling up all the chairs much further up than the “end of the chair line.” The woman behind me was really mad. She was right to be mad. These people were in effect, cutting the line by plopping down in chairs close to the front of the chair line...such as it was. She finally just went up there and told the all those people sitting around in the chair line waiting on the woman to arrive with the tickets, that they needed to stand up, and make a real line, because nobody really knew where it started and ended. They did stand up and form a line.
The lady came and handed out the tender tickets. My family got in group one, but that didn’t matter when it came time. People with No. 2 group tickets were pushing and shoving. My daughter had a baby in a stroller. She had a group 1 ticket, but when the disorganized crew opened the tape to let another group through, the No. 2 group ticket holders behind my daughter with the stroller almost trampled her and the baby. When she got through, she was crying really hard. It was just a horrible situation and very traumatic. Of course, they do call for all the people in motorized chairs to come first, but there also should be a call for young parents with small children or at least babies. NEVER EVER AGAIN.
As my husband said today, as we waited in yet another long line to reboard in Jamaica, “There are too many long lines to stand in.” We have both decided that we don’t care to cruise again for a very long time, if ever. I probably spent at least 1/2 day standing in lines. Lots of wasted hours.
As far as having a wonderful vacation, on a scale of 1 to 10, this is probably about a 3-4 at best. The food is pretty good, the service except occasionally is good, and the entertainment is good. Everything else pretty much “stinks.”
Let’s just say, I am dropping Royal Caribbean off my list of acceptable and memorable vacations.