Second Mate

Joined: 05/22/2014
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About railroad98


railroad98's Past Cruises

Norwegian Star

January 2016 - Norwegian Star to Caribbean - Western

More Passengers, Less service

While I wasn't expecting a luxury voyage like Oceania, Celebrity or Seawind I also was not expecting to be as low as a Carnival! Somehow they have managed to add more and more passengers and their "free-style cruising" means poor service and less of it.

If you don't book a table in the 2 main dinning rooms BEFORE you sail, good luck getting a table when you want it without waiting on line. Sure they give a glass of champagne if you have to wait, but I'd rather have a table and not have to stand around or in line.

Since the advent of pre-paid gratuities, low level cruise line staff have an attitude of " I'm getting my money anyway, good or bad service". It is impossible to find a bar waiter anymore during lunch on the Lido or in the dinning rooms.

So my big complaint is that the room steward removed a shopping bag of jewelry and receipts from the room and I have yet to be bale to talk to anyone about it. I have tried calling the ship, the day we got home, untold number of calls to guest relations "we are experiencing high volume please call back later" and Twitter, email and FB. I have asked my cruise booking agent and she cant get through to them either. I purchased 2 sets of cuff links and a fairly expensive watch on board. The watch was on my wrist, but the box, guarantee paperwork and receipts along with the cuff links were removed by the steward. I hope it was not intentional but it does need to be brought to their attention.

What made this cruise tolerable was the 20+ couples from our community who were on board. That made it fun, but I have no plans to sail with NCL again.

next triSadp: 29 day voyage to Baltic on HAL next month.

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Queen Mary 2

May 2014 - Queen Mary 2 to Transatlantic

Queen Mary 2 is showing her age !

The hype and "glamour" of sailing on the Queen Mary is not that special. Yes, it is a truly fine ocean liner and handles the North Atlantic well but everything else is just about standard for a Carnival Company owned ship. We've sailed on many of them: COSTA, HAL, the old Carnival back in the 70's. We've also sailed with RCL. Holland America is actually better. The ship is 10 yrs old and could use some facelifting. Sained and dirty carpeting, less than comfortable seating, bath towels like sheets of canvas and buffet food offerings less than sumptuous. Not impressed with how the buffett was organized, always seem to be closing the station we just got to. Food handling was not as sanitary as I would have expected and some of the offerings were just too repititious. The embarkation process was chaos. Over 2 hours to load and not enough staff. They sent an email advising to not arrive till after the lunch hour. Got there at 1:30 and didnt board till 3:30 ! Disembarkation was just as bad. No announcement, crew was surly and nobody knew the status. almost an hour behind schedule. the entertainment was less than stellar, although several good lectures were had. Our dining room staff did well but the menu needs help. Kudo's for carrying a non-alcoholic wine (at $30/btl) and the High Tea was well done. Spending quality time with family compensated for the poor overall experience. Oh, and never got a final on-baord spending statement before leaving !

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railroad98's Tips

New York, New York - If you are a US resident, no problem. Long wait for the foreign passport folks
Queen Mary 2 Queen Mary 2 - Stay away from the King's Court Buffett. Hot food should be hot, cold should be cold and cooked food should be well presented.

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commented on a Norwegian Star cruise review. - "I agree. Quality of food in main dinning rooms is not what it used to be. If you pay extra in the specialty  rooms you get somewhat better cuisine..." read more

added Jan 17, 2016 cruise on Norwegian Star to their profile.

reviewed their Caribbean - Western cruise on Norwegian Star and gave it 2 stars!

received a helpful vote on their Queen Mary 2 cruise review - Queen Mary 2 is showing her age !

received a helpful vote on their Queen Mary 2 cruise review - Queen Mary 2 is showing her age !

received a helpful vote on their Queen Mary 2 cruise review - Queen Mary 2 is showing her age !

received a helpful vote on their Queen Mary 2 cruise review - Queen Mary 2 is showing her age !

followed a discussion, Queen Mary 2 - Queen Mary 2 is showing her age !, on the cruiseline forum.

commented on a Queen Mary 2 cruise review. - "As a follow-up: My research has uncovered the fact that over half of the ships crew "turned-over" just prior to our sailing and were not fully expe..." read more

received a helpful vote on their Queen Mary 2 cruise review - Queen Mary 2 is showing her age !