April 2015 - 7 Night Eastern Caribbean (Ft. Lauderdale Roundtrip) Cruise on Oasis of the Seas
Maybe a smidge better than Carnival but needs a few tweaks!
Overall, We enjoyed our first experience with RCL with a couple of exceptions(that later).
First, our main dining server made our dining experience exceptional. Always very attentive. Our Stateroom steward was also exceptional even though our first bad experience involved finding lipstick stain and hair on sheets the very first night. He immediately resolved the situation though and was always friendly and going out of his way to converse with us throughout the cruise.
Though a loyal 6-time Carnival cruiser, I was convinced(from friends) to try RCL and they would exceed my expectations and that I would never go back to ol' Carnival. I will admit, there WERE much more things to do on RCL than Carni. That being said, the few pluses onboard RCL are not enough to justify ousting Carni. RCL is about 40% more than Carni for same itinerary and there were a few things RCL fell short on.
1st, Insignificant but yet worth mentioning is RCL didn't provide detailed maps of ports of call. Only shopping maps of immediate port. Though, I did find the road maps at the port, I would have thought RCL would provide this. Again, no big deal.
2nd, I was completely disappointed in the reservation system for the shows onboard. Being, this was our first time aboard RCL, I did not know you must book ALL your shows on the first day. Some shows were so overbooked the 2nd day, we were unable to see them. I'm used to(as it should be) first come, first see for shows. Also, when you book one, you are unable to re-book for another day. We had booked one for 2nd day, but became ill so was unable to see. When we went to book another day, it said we had already booked this show and now not accepting any more reservations. This needs streamlined.
3rd, last day of cruise in main dining, I had mashed potatoes with main course. But something was added to potatoes upon a mouth full........some sort of plastic or saran wrap was embedded in mash potatoes. This is definitely unacceptable. I was told by Maitre d to report this to RCL but never got a response.
4th, Although plenty of daytime activities aboard(Zipline, flowrider, rock climbing, etc), hours of operation seemed very limited. Always seemed very busy during available times which made it hard to find a good time to access.
This is just a very good suggestion........when the comedy show is overbooked every night of the cruise, something needs to change. Once RCL realized this(as explained by the staff at Comedy Live), the venue should have been adopted to one of the bigger theaters to allow for the massive crowds that showed up. Due to the massive over booking, we were not able to see this show either.
RCL is a good quality cruise line but some tweaks are needed. Yeah, not everyone is going to be happy but I just don't see the big deal on switching to RCL from a better priced Carni. Carni just needs to up there game on available activities and hospitality.
I will say this, I loved the Oasis of the Seas ship. So big, we were still finding shops/eateries 3 days in.