Originally posted by CRUISERS BEWARE:
I would like to warn anyone who has any inclinations of going on a cruise with
Celebrity Cruises/Royal Caribbean. In September my husband and I went on our
honeymoon on the Milennium Celebrity Cruise. We purchased our entire package
from Celebrity and spent an extremely large amount of money: $25,000 on this
honeymoon - including the cruise itself, flights, food, drinks, and excursions.
We cruised 2 weeks on the Milennium without the pools, hot tubs, ball courts.
Having worked in the travel industry in the past I had always wanted to go on a
Celebrity cruise...what a BIG mistake that turned out to be. The service was
absolutely horrible, most of the crew members were unfriendly, cold and
miserable - I do not understand how they managed to be employed in the
hospitality industry. We were shocked. The everyday activities were lame and
the night life was minimal. I have been on cruises before and they have been
Please Please Please I warn you to WATCH YOUR LUGGAGE and all your personal
belongings. Do NOT take the staff's word when they tell you your luggage will
be safe when you leave it for their safekeeping before disembarking the ship.
We had made sure our luggage was safety locked up. When we got home to our
surprise that some items we brought and purchased from our trip were STOLEN!
(approximately $1000.00 worth). They even stole the video tapes from our
vacation (our honeymoon memories - gone!) The tapes and videocamcorder we
received as a wedding gift just a month before was stolen. (This was our first
and last time we had to use it). I know thieves have no sentiments and they
don't give a care as to what they steal and who they steal from. I could not
believe what had happened! Trying to get any compensation from Celebrity
Cruiselines is a JOKE! Not only did they steal our luggage they managed to lose
another bag of ours from the ship to the carousal in Barcelona - less than 100
metres away. What a bunch of incompetent fools. This is no coincidence, these
people are professionals so please be aware.
I can not believe after spending the amount of money we did Celebrity just
brushed us off. The letter they sent back was like a slap in the face. I
believe no matter how much money is spent on a vacation no one should have to
worry about safety or their possessions especially because it is their job to
safekeep their belongings. I am absolutely flabbergasted and appalled with what
has happened and especially the lack of professionalism of this cruiseline.
Please I beg you to think twice before booking a vacation with Celebrity
Take care all. Thank you for reading my review and think hard before booking
Celebrity Cruises/Royal Caribbean.
I am so sorry to hear of your honeymoon memories lost. I too had something stolen by the pier crew, it was only a camera but a good digital one. Carnival was pleasant and filed a report but clearly could do little about this incident. I had to happy that it will reflect on who the port hires to handle bags. I might have better complained to Port of Miami. But don't let it sour you to much and I wouldn't hold it against the cruise line. My wife and I have found a good fit with Carnival and have booked our 5th cruise with them in spite of the lost camera. Good luck
My original thought regarding your post is that you work for NCL. You said the staff were "unfriendly, cold and miserable", I'm sorry I don't buy that. I think you got lost somewhere between the amount of money you spent and your expectations of getting better service because it cost you so much!
When considering money spent, I would focus my expectations proportionate to how well I tipped.
I don't mean the obligatory add-on but tipping throughout the cruise.
It is unfortunate about the camera and video, I am sure that it is devastating for you but please don't let it influence your opinion of Celebrity. There are thousands of posts here and hundreds of posters who have had a wonderful time on Celebrity cruises.
Sorry to hear of your misfortunes, and your emotions are certainly understandable. But I too have to say that I've been on several Celebrity and RCI cruises and have enjoyed them tremendously. I've found the service, food and activities quite superior.
So, while I think that readers will benefit from your post by raising their awareness of possible dangers of cruise travel in general... I don't think it will stop cruisers from using this reputable cruise line.
I have to tell you that my cousin had the same problem, same cruise line. They sailed for their honeymoon back in July and had things stolen as well. They lost their digital camera, their laptop computer and some souveniers. They were not compensated either and are very upset with the cruise line. I would take the warning seriously. Im sure this is not the only line that does this but I have heard two stories now from the same line.
This problem is not unique to Celebrity Cruise Lines. This same thing has happened on another premium cruise line, Oceania. I am sure it happens on all cruise lines more than we hear. Once again, the luggage handlers on the pier are contracted. There is no way of knowing if the theft happened on the ship or after. While it is disheartning when this happens, it should be a reminder to everyone NEVER put valuables in your checked luggage. Not even if it's locked. Locks only keep honest people honest.
Gee that is just what the thieves are waiting for - passenger who either never learn or are just too trusting...All valuables (money, jewellery, documents and electronics etc) belong in your carry on. By the way they are not even covered by insurance while in you checked luggage!!!!!
Originally posted by moeve:
All valuables (money, jewellery, documents and electronics etc) belong in your carry on.
I'd have to second that sentiment... Maybe it's from my upbringing in "da Bronx", where I was raised with a healthy suspicion of strangers, no matter how well-meaning or what uniform they wear. When I travel, EVERYTHING of value stays in my pockets or carry-on that never leaves my shoulder until I'm in the hotel, ship, or home. If I'm forced to pack an item of modest value in checked bags, I mentally prepare myself for the possibility of it being lost or stolen.
Call me a pessimist, I suppose, but it's "worked" so far!!
We, too, recently returned from a Celebrity cruise and were hugely disappointed. In our case, the ship was the Galaxy, sailing from Civitavecchia on an 11-day cruise of the Greek Islands.
This was not our first cruise. My first trans-Atlantic voyage was in 1958 and I have since sailed on Cunard, Candian-Pacific, Holland-America, Carnival and Celebrity. My career in the IT industry has taken me to virtually every continent and I have travelled extensively on business and on vacation in North America, Europe, South East Asia and the Middle East.
I certainly have enough experience that my comments cannot be dismissed as casually as yours were and I can confirm a good deal of what you had to say.
Despite its claim to "award-winning cuisine", the food on Galaxy was bland, unimaginative and badly prepared. Most roadside diners serve tastier food than we were given.
Like you, we found the "entertainment" boring and banal... Bingo, "I Love Lucy" re-runs on TV, and second-rate comedians no one has ever heard of are not our idea of a good time.
We were totally put off by the nickel-and-diming, 15% surcharges added to every purchase for less than stellar service, and the constant efforts to sell us everything from so-called "art" to over-priced costume jewelry.
I have enjoyed voyages on a variety of ships and cruise lines but I would never go back to Celebrity or its sister companies and would urge anyone contemplating a trip on Galaxy to give the ship and its surly crew as wide a berth as possible.
If I want to be "diss"-ed by third world economic refugees I can stay home and get it for free !
This comment is really a response to "Chef Ken" who claims to be a "serious cruiser" (whatever that means) and rather rudely dismissed your comments about poor service on Celebrity.
Frankly, "Chef Ken" and people like him are a huge part of the problem we all have to deal with as travellers and tourists. He mistakenly assumes that tipping is the price we have to pay for good service, rather than the reward we give for services already rendered. Once service personnel in any environment start to take tips for granted, as their rightful due, the service that is OUR rightful due instantly goes by the wayside.
Chef Ken may have taken many cruises, but I suspect he knows very little of the world outside the USA and an artificial shipboard environment which generally reflects the culture of the country which owns and/or manages the vessel.
If he did, he would recognize that outside North America, service is generally included in the cost of meals and most hospitality services. That is certainly the case in virtually all of Europe. A small tip is generally welcomed, but it is by no means obligatory and always at the discretion of the customer.
The growing practice of cruise companies to automatically add a 15% service charge to every shipboard service, and to propose "obligatory" tips for everyone from maitre d's and pool attendants is both manipulative and profoundly annoying. It is nothing more than a "hidden tariff" which essentially benefits no one but the cruise line itself.
Passengers should not be required to "tip" for services that are already paid for in the cost of the cruise. If pasengers refused to go along with the cruise industry's exploitative labour practices, crews might be paid more appropriately and would not be so dependent on the generosity of those they are are hired to serve.
We've had numerous posts on this site about this last subject. If you fail to tip, figuring that the level of service should be included in the cost of the cruise, you are not hurting the cruise line and will not be making any real difference. You are only hurting the folks who have busted their (you know) for you all week. Like it or not, the cruise lines have kept their fares low in order to attract people to buy cruises and fill their ships, and have done so precisely by depending on gratuities to pay a good portion of the wages of those directly serving the customers, and by "nickel and diming" - extra charges for drinks, shore excursions, etc.
In the glory days of ocean liners, these things were indeed included in the price of their passage (rarely thought of as a "cruise"), but only the very wealthy could afford to go, unless they rode "steerage" and did without a lot of the service we have come to expect as part of a cruise. Let's face it, cruise fares now are as low as, or lower than, cruise fares 15-20 years ago, and that's not even adjusting for inflation! There are some cruise lines, primarily the luxury ones, which do include gratuities and sometimes drinks of all sorts in the upfront price - but most folks balk at paying those prices. If you can pay $100/day for a 7-day cruise, most think, why pay $300/day - never stopping to think that so many things (even some shore excursions) are included in those higher prices on the luxury lines.
Long story short, Peejay, if you feel strongly that tips should be included in your cruise price, then you should be booking your cruises on Crystal, Silversea, Seabourn and others that include those "extras" in the price.
Cruisers Beware, I am sorry for the loss of your pictures and camera, especially after your honeymoon trip, but echo the thoughts of several others who have pointed out that valuables should always be in your carryon luggage. I would never consider packing a camera of any kind (other than disposable) in my check-thru luggage.