April 2015 - Jewel of the Seas to Caribbean - Southern
From the minute we got to the port, the experience was wonderful. It was obvious to me, since I have sailed from San Juan twice previously, that Royal Caribbean has duly noted feedback on the boarding process. They have taken steps to avoid long lines at the pier. We waited maybe 15 minutes from the time our taxi dropped us off until the time we were at the desk receiving our welcome packet.
Our luggage was in our room within a reasonable amount of time; we weren't there when it arrived, but when we got to our room before dinner, the bags were there. Previously we waited several hours to get our luggage.
This is the first time I've done My Time dining. I was not sure what to expect. While we did have the same time every night, I now realize that you can reserve a different time each evening and you can reserve a table with other passengers if you do desire. The difference I saw in this was that you eat in the upper level of the dining room. Due to the set times in the lower level, they are more apt to plan the recognition events such as for the chefs and wait staff. The shift in timing upstairs does not really allow for them to plan the "processions" and such. This was noticeable to me as a frequent cruiser; others may not even notice the difference.
Our shore excursion experience was just awesome. We participated in the off-road adventure in St. John's. We had Henderson as our driver and he was fabulous; the tour was so much fun and the beach stop was gorgeous. It's a bumpy road at times, so I'd warn folks with back or neck issues to be aware of that.
I truly enjoyed the entire trip; the ship, the staff and everything about it resulted in a fabulous, fun and also relaxing vacation.