January 2016 - Oasis of the Seas to Caribbean - Western
This was our first cruise and I was very worried about the nickel and diming that could happen. Well, my worst fears realized. The very first person we met was the porter unloading cars. First thing she did was ask for tip to take our bags 15 feet. That pretty much set the tone for the trip. Be aware that if you don't do the prepay gratuity, they will charge per day per person $12.95. Watch your receipts when getting drinks or dinner, sometimes they already have in gratuity and still leave a blank line in case you want to add more. A rough estimate of what we spent on tips (including excursion drivers, guides, etc.) $500 for two. The ship is very nice and spacious. Rooms were nice but shower was small. Food was ok for lunch and breakfast (about same as what you would get at local buffet), dinner was really good. Service was always nice. Didn't realize until the cruise was almost over that you could really order more then just one main course, even get two of the same thing ... appetizer or main course. The Mexican place in the boardwalk had the best chips and salsa. Would have liked to try the other restaurants but didn't want to pay the extra fees. The ports of call were very third world and not impressive or great. I have no desire to go back to any of them. Labadee was nice but we found the beach to be very rocky and hard to walk on. Beware of the local vendors. My friends wife found out the hard way .. if they put anything on you they expect you to buy it. If you don't they get very disgruntled. It was unpleasant experience. The internet worked great and I didn't have any real problems connecting (yes, I actually did spend some time working). I was surprised by "Come fly with me". For being on a cruise ship that was quite a production and the high divers have some big .... Music on the pool deck was loud at times, found ourselves shouting at each other to talk. Like the different pool areas and they were constantly being cleaned. Overall the ship was impressive and nice.