February 2014 - Splendour of the Seas to South America
I wanted to let you know how disappointed my grandma and I were our cruise experience. First and foremost, while we were in line to check in for the cruise, we were alerted to a $160/person reciprocity fee that we were required to pre-pay for entrance into Argentina. Since this was the very first I heard of this, you can imagine my shock and disappointment. You had let us know of the Brazilian Visa required (costing $160/person) and I had seen that for myself on the Royal Caribbean website, however, there was never any mention of the fee for Argentina as well. Our only option at the point in time that we learned about it, was to pay or not board the ship. Needless to say, we paid the fee ($320 total). As a travel agency service, I think it your responsibility to disclose and clarify any documents we would need to take this cruise so we had all the information upfront and could make a judgment call on whether or not it was worth it to spend all this extra money to take this cruise. I would like to know if there is any way you plan to rectify this unfortunate situation.
Next, I did receive an email 10 days after I booked this trip, that the cruise was going to be a "culturally enriching experience", there was nothing in that email or on the Royal Caribbean website that led me to believe over 95% of the people on the ship, along with all of the entertainment would be in Portuguese. If the description was more clear, I would have been concerned - knowing that we would not be able to speak to anyone or really enjoy any of the entertainment. However, everything I read made me believe it would not be a concern and that there would be plenty of English spoken on board. That was not the case at all. The time of dinner even changed to accommodate the Portuguese passengers, which was not discussed on the Royal Caribbean website. Anytime dining begins at 6:30 and my grandma was already pushing it with how late she wanted to eat. We quickly found out on the ship, that dinner would actually not start until 7:30 anywhere - dining room or buffet - because that is more standard to Brazilian dinner time. Again, information that should have been available prior to booking.
Finally, as part of my booking deal, you had said that we would get a $75 credit on any Seapass charges. There was no discount taken off either of our accounts. I'm happy to contact Royal Caribbean about this as well, but figured I would address it with you first, as it had been part of my booking deal with Cruises Only.