Caribbean Cruise

Adventure of the Seas Cruise Review to Caribbean - Western

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 41

Overall rating:

3 out of 5
Verified Review
Adventure of the Seas

6 Night Western Caribbean (Ft. Lauderdale Roundtrip)

Sail date: December 30, 2018

Ship: Adventure of the Seas

Cabin type: Oceanview

Cabin number: 2642

Traveled as: Large Group

Reviewed: 3 years ago

Review summary

We have been loyal RC members for more than 20 years, and have always enjoyed our cruises. The value-for-money and breadth of activities and accommodations appeals to our family vacations, and we have often encouraged extended families to join us on our RC cruises. As usual, the ship was beautiful, the food was very good and the staff was nice and efficient. But we have two major concerns that we take this opportunity to relay to you: Service Quality Decline: Recently, however – starting with the automatic 18% service charge – the quality of services has declined noticeably. Traditionally, the service has consistently rated exceptionally high, with almost every waiter, cabin attendant and staff remarkably eager to provide knowledgeable and efficient service with impeccable friendliness. After the introduction of the automatic 18% service charge, the incentive for staff to provide that extra level of service is gone, and the decline in service is significant. 1. Staff at the excursion or service desk are not aware of basic facts, such as location or distance to shopping areas 2. Some wait staff – particularly unassigned waiters at breakfasts – are unresponsive or slow with service and/or food is delivered late and cold or orders are inaccurate 3. General attitudes of staff are consistently not as ebullient as they were prior to the 18% system. That said, our waiters, Inyoman and Made, and our cabin steward, Oral La Borde, were excellent. Over-Selling: There has always been an significant element of “selling” on any cruise ship – pushing beauty treatments in the spa or selling beverage packages, shore excursions, private dining, etc. But in the last cruise, the hard selling was truly over-the-top. It seemed that there was a constant bombardment of selling – loudly pushing every conceivable item all the time. The sound system in the spa was turned-up so loud during the beauty products pushing sessions that the whole fitness center was made virtually unusable by people trying to exercise. And at every turn in the ship, someone was selling something, creating the atmosphere of a barkers’ bazaar throughout the ship. Transportation Logistics: In Fort Lauderdale, the traffic leading to the port and terminals was very long and poorly handled by port officials. We spent over an hour in traffic just at the entrance to the port. It seems the road infrastructure and security are not designed to handle the volume of traffic and no one seems interested in fixing it. This will discourage us from cruising from Ft. Lauderdale again. In Grand Cayman, the tendering to and from shore was very prolonged and frustrating. To get back onto the ship in mid-afternoon, the line for the tender was 90 mins and in the sun. Older and younger people in particular had a hard time with it. Closing Comments: In closing, I would emphasize that our particular waiter (at dinner) was excellent, and our cabin attendant was friendly and efficient. But, overall, there is a dramatic decline in the quality of the entire RC cruise experience as a result of the service and constant selling. We assume that RC has calculated the financial benefit of the 18% system and the move to go down-market, and has determined that it is willing to do so in exchange for an increase in revenue. And perhaps Royal Caribbean is repositioning itself to compete more with Carnival than with Norwegian Cruise Lines. If so, then it’s a reasonable commercial decision for RC, but we have determined to seek a cruise line that may charge a bit more, but one that provides that former level of service. We’re not interested in a Carnival Cruise, and that’s what RC is becoming, then we will have to cruise elsewhere.

Embarkation

4 out of 5
As good as could be expected. Port officials do not manage the traffic well - 90 mins in traffic oustide port.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

3 out of 5
Very good.

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5
Very good

Entertainment

3 out of 5
Mixed. Bands were so-so. Shows were ok. The Canadian piano evenings was excellent.

Children's Programs

3 out of 5
Kids Club is a great idea to enable kids to meet each other.

Service and Staff

3 out of 5
We have been loyal RC members for more than 20 years, and have always enjoyed our cruises. The value-for-money and breadth of activities and accommodations appeals to our family vacations, and we have often encouraged extended families to join us on our RC cruises. As usual, the ship was beautiful, the food was very good and the staff was nice and efficient. But we have two major concerns that we take this opportunity to relay to you: Service Quality Decline: Recently, however – starting with the automatic 18% service charge – the quality of services has declined noticeably. Traditionally, the service has consistently rated exceptionally high, with almost every waiter, cabin attendant and staff remarkably eager to provide knowledgeable and efficient service with impeccable friendliness. After the introduction of the automatic 18% service charge, the incentive for staff to provide that extra level of service is gone, and the decline in service is significant. 1. Staff at the excursion or service desk are not aware of basic facts, such as location or distance to shopping areas 2. Some wait staff – particularly unassigned waiters at breakfasts – are unresponsive or slow with service and/or food is delivered late and cold or orders are inaccurate 3. General attitudes of staff are consistently not as ebullient as they were prior to the 18% system. That said, our waiters, Inyoman and Made, and our cabin stewart, Oral La Borde, were excellent.

Ship Quality

4 out of 5
Excellent. A beautiful ship, very thoughtfully designed and well-maintained

Cabin / Stateroom

4 out of 5
Very spacious (for a ship) and nicely laid out.

Ship tip

Book dining arrangements early. Pack a carry-on bag for embarkation and disembarkation.

Ports of call

Ft. Lauderdale (Port Everglades), Florida

2 out of 5
Ft. Lauderdale holds no interest for us.

George Town, Grand Cayman

2 out of 5
The tendering was very prolonged and frustrating. To get back onto the ship, the line for the tender was 90 mins and in the sun. Older and younger people in particular had a hard time with it. I would not repeat a visit to the facilities close to the ship. Too crowded and unpleasant. But the town and outer areas are nice

Costa Maya (Mahahual), Mexico

2 out of 5
The shopping at dockside was limited and designed for first-time tourists. I would always recommend going further in to more genuine areas.

Cozumel, Mexico

3 out of 5
More authentic. Better all around.

Disembarkation

5 out of 5
This is a logistics challenge for all cruise lines and was very well handled by RC this time. Very effective and efficient. Never fun, fast or easy, but as good as it could be.
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