August 2015 - Queen Victoria to Europe - Western Mediterranean
Let me tell you this was our first cruise with Cunard and our over 27 with other lines. By far, it was one with more bad experiences. It is a pity that although you have a pretty and comfortable ship the service has to be so, so. Do you train your staff? By service I mean your waiters, assistants, room Stewards, Maitre D', Purser's Desk, etc, it seems no one is even teaching them how to provide these services. We had a terrible experience with your Purser's Desk staff, we went to ask them to make a call for us to make reservation at the seafood restaurant BotaFumeiro (since I did not have my phone, I thought I lost it in Florence, Thank God I found it three days later) and the lady told us that they didn't provide those services, when I heard that I was chocked, but she did tell me I can show you how you can make a call from your room (when she said that, I almost told her, lady do you think I am stupid, but I didn't do it), then she said that it will cost us $4.50 per minute. These type of services we got it in other cruise lines, e.g. NCL, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity. One year we were in NCL and we were going to fly to Paris to stay there a week and that was the year that Paris had the Transportation Strike, well the Purser's Desk from NCL called us and they let us know what was happening and they helped us re-arranged our trip and they did everything for us for FREE. My other questions to the lady at the Purser's Desk was, can you print our Boarding Passes for our flight from Venice to US and once again we got the same answer from her. Our Concierge Travel, Mr. Brian Mitchell from Luxury Cruises, was the one to advise us to go the Concierge Desk and to request the service. We did get an answer from the Purser's Desk, they told us that in order for us to print the boarding passes, we needed to get their Internet Package.
Our first bad experience was the first night we went to the Britannia Restaurant, Second Seating at Table 543. When we got to our table we didn't like it and we went and told Maitre D' Thomas to help us find another table, we understood that it was the first night and that it was going to be hard for him to do it that night, but what it made us mad was that Mr. Thomas did not take any interest in helping us. We had the same experience about three years ago in the Liberty of the Seas from Royal Caribbean, however, their Maitre D' took interest right away and helped us find another table by the second day. That was the service we were expecting from Mr. Thomas. Every night we got to the dining room he always had the same answer, I am sorry I don't have one for you. However, the third or fourth night he brought a couple to our table to see if they liked the table and of course, they said No. We told Thomas that the second table next to ours was empty that no one was there and he said oh no they will come, well the couple assigned to that table never showed up, but he gave the table to two Asian ladies. But the service that we received from the Waiter of Table 543 was Excellent, his name is Ivan and his assistant waiter Jose was also excellent. We commended very highly both of them as well as Carola the Head Waiter, she should be the Maitre D' not Mr. Thomas. Finally, the second day of our second week, Mr. Thomas gave us another table (Table 515), the Waiter Ray was good but as not as good as Ivan, however, his assistant was not good at all, Ray had to do everything. These are small examples because I am sure you have heard these type of story from other passengers. We did go to one of your Pay Restaurant Verandah (I hope I have the right spelling) and the service that we received from Daniella the waitress as well as from their Maitre D' Bryan was excellent and the food was spectacular. Why can you have staff like them working at your regular restaurants.
There were many other things wrong too. Your in cabin TV was too small compare to other cruise lines, the shower too little, your in cabin movies system was not good, in other cruise lines, they have a list of movies that you can choose from at any time. You pride yourself of being an excellent cruise line, in a way you are, but you also nickel and dime people, many things had charges attached and these bad experiences we got, we really hope that you look into them to improve your service. Our last bad experience we received was once again, from your Purser's Desk staff. Two nights before of our departure in Venice, my husband went to the desk and told them that our driver that we hired was going to be waiting for us outside the terminal by 7:00 AM since our flight was leaving by 10:30 AM and we had four suitcases and two carry on, the lady told my husband that he had to carry the suitcases himself and that was when my husband got really really mad and he told her, of course, when she saw him how upset he was, then she told him that she was going to send someone to our stateroom for him to carry our suitcases until the Terminal. But the point of this incident is that she provided the service that we requested after my husband got upset, I don't think this is right.
I won't keep boring you, but again, it is a real shame that you don't manage this ship correctly. It is pretty, the evening shows were excellent, your afternoon tea is great, your Spa, beauty salon are very good and it could really appeal to a lot of people if you would only take a little more time to correct these problems.
However, we will have to think about it twice before we try your line again or recommend it to our family and friends. This was a very Expense Trip and we were not expected to have these problems. Overall a bad experience, especially on an 12 day cruise.
Emma & Jose Sardina, Hallandale, FL, US - (954) 454-0224