This was a nice cruise once you get on the ship and in January it takes 2 days to get to nice weather. The ports are all similar in that they are tourism based so the taxi drivers are "hovering" and can be very aggressive. The ship is nice and has great amenities, the crew is good and there are plenty of east coast people on this cruise.
4 out of 5
Getting to the port in Bayonne, NJ was a test of patience on January 28, 2018. There is a two lane road they have set up to get you to the ship and the road is narrow and really backed up by about 11:00 am. We took a Lyft from the airport hotel and it took about 20 minutes to get from the hotel to the gate at the port, then it took almost 40 minutes to get from the gate to the ship - about 1 mile. When we arrived at the ship from the time we dropped our bags to actually stepping on board was about 10 minutes! The check in was the fastest we have ever experienced, it was brilliant. A lady with a tablet took our information in just a few minutes and we were on our way to the ship.
Food and Dining
3 out of 5
It appears RCCL is using the dining as one of their cost cutting mechanisms. I prefer to eat fish and their choices for fish in the dining areas has gone to the least expensive selections. Talapia, cod, other less expensive fish almost always in the Windjammer and now at the dining rooms. Had salmon one night in the dining room and never saw it in the Windjammer. Izumi restaurant is different from other ships version of this restaurant in that it does not offer “hot stone” cooking at your table. Otherwise very similar to Izumi on other ships. Chops Grille is much the same as other ships, but the view out the window is of the life boats.
2 out of 5
The first night we went to the Solarium to have dinner and John told us we had to have a reservation to eat. I looked around and counted 15 empty tables and said to John, “there are 15 empty tables right now”, his reply was “you have to have a reservation”. When pressed for an reason we could not sit down, he suggested that I look at his computer to see the reservations. But you have 15 empty tables and no one coming was not good enough, the computer would not allow us to sit down. Later, when we went to another restaurant and were told the same thing, we asked if we could make a reservation for the next night and were told “the system will not allow me to make reservations for tomorrow, you need to call in the morning”. Then, the next morning when you call the # for a reservation, there are 4000 people calling for a reservation and how well do you think 1 person answering those calls goes? Well why not let me make a reservation on my room TV and get rid of the people telling me that they can’t work with the computer system.
3 out of 5
Service and Staff
3 out of 5
Our room attendant Paola was excellent and very nice. We met bartenders Johnson and Richard in the Diamond Lounge and they were both great to talk with in the evening. Most of the other staff we interacted with were just OK.
5 out of 5
Very nice ship, Oasis class and well taken care of each day.
Cabin / Stateroom
2 out of 5
The ship is only a few years old and is in good condition overall with very nice interior appointments. We stayed in Cabin 10709 (interior) and although the cabin was in good condition the area it is located has some industrial process and the noise night and day is very loud and recurs frequently (about 10 - 15 minutes between episodes). It sounds like the ships trash compactor is just above your room - quite loud day and night. If you are a light sleeper get to another area of the ship.
Make reservations for everything early, dining, north star, shows, etc.
It is a short walk fro the ship to the center of Old Town where there are shops and restaurants along with some sidewalk vendors. Not too much destruction as a result of Hurricane Irma remains. Not much to do and see at this port.
After Hurricane Irma the people here are still in a rebuilding phase with a significant amount of destruction still remaining all over the island. The port area has been cleaned up with some walking areas still being constructed. The walk from the ship to downtown is short with many restaurants and shops open. There is a ferry from the ship to the downtown area and the cost is approximately $7 USD round trip.
Port is basically in town and is a short walk from the ship. There are taxi drivers all along the street when you are walking and at times the drivers behavior could be considered harassment. The people depend on tourism and to some people they have not done a good job of making the town beautiful and tourism friendly.
Port is approximately a 20 minute walk from the ship. They have a water taxi from the ship to the city which is approximately $5 USD round trip. Police will stop you and talk with you if you stray from the main tourist section of the city. The police will indicate to you where the ‘safe” areas are and highly suggest you stay in those areas. One person we walked by said to us “you have to be very careful around here” and looked very serious. Saturday is the locals market in the city and there are many people come to the city to sell almost anything out of there cars or small pop up tents on the streets. There are many people all through the city and the taxi drivers are constantly asking you to get in their car.
When we arrived at the port there was a shuttle service that was very short (2 minute drive) from the ship to the port area. The taxi drivers were out in force and were pushing taxi rides mainly to the beach. It was Sunday and the taxi drivers told us the main section of the city was closed due to Sunday services in the country. It was cloudy and rainy so we decided to stay at the port area which has a number of shops and restaurants.
*Cruiseline.com is not a booking agent or travel agency,
and does not charge any service fees to users of our site. Our partners
(travel agencies and cruise lines) provide prices, which we list for our
users' convenience. Cruiseline.com does not guarantee any specific rates or
prices. While prices are updated daily, please check with the booking site
for the exact amount. Cruiseline.com is not responsible for content on
external web sites.
Need help from a personal vacation planner?
Find the perfect cruise with weekly tips and cruise deals for as little as $30/night!
Sign up for weekly cruise deals
Join other subscribers and get the best
cruise deals of the week in your inbox every Thursday.