Explorer of the Seas Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Deck Hand

1 cruise (first)


Helpful Votes

5 out of 5

First time cruisers, It was Wonderful!

Sail Date: January 02, 2011

Reviewed: 5 years ago

Traveled As: Couple

Room Type: Inside

As First time cruisers our main problem was not knowing how to pack for a 14 day cruise. My husband felt that one suit would have been enough. Check -in was very efficient and quick. the days on the boat are very busy. You can chose to be busy or just relax. the music and the shows are superb. I strongly recommend to join an early morning ship tour on the ports you tender in, because, they will let you go out first- beating the "tendering" crowd. You should try to get a massage on your way back - they are wonderful up at the Spa. towards the return they offered a "Last days Special" that were very good. If you are a beach goer and your hair is bleached- the deep hair moisturizing treatment did wonders for my hair. Get it done early though, you need at leave it in for at least 1 hour. You get a sea pass attached to your credit card. You Have to be watchful and follow your balance on the interactive TV in your room. Any thing you need repaired- don't be afraid to ask your attendant to help you with. If you need towels to go ashore- big ones are given out by the pool with a 20 dollar deposit on each towel- so make sure you bring them back- get them the night before to avoid the morning crowed. Coffee in the Windjammer is pretty bad but, the coffee in the Promenade Cafe and the main dining rooms are Okay. Do take the trip insurance that offers. My husband had an ear infection and needed to see the Doctor twice for a total over $450.00 USD. Bringing cash in small bills on land is very helpful to negotiate lower prices. Duty free liquor and souvenirs are way much cheaper on the ports than on the duty free ship stores. There will be sales night on alcohol, t-shirts, cameras jewelry, watches, handbags, scarves, purses etc... in the promenade area - you have to be watchful, because they are good sales. T-Shirts souvenirs from all the Islands will be available as you cruise back. Once we Disembarked we got one of the baggage stewards to help us with the luggage and he basically just rushed us right through Customs all the way to the pick-up area in about 5 minutes! Really worth the price of the tip! The people who carried their own bags were waiting in huge lines. We should have we taken our laptop to down load pictures in our camera as we ran out of space. Internet is very expensive. Internet Caf and Wi-Fi services at the ports is much cheaper. Be watchful of ports on Sundays -as most Caribbean Islands are very religious and stores will be closed. You are probably better of with taking a tour on Sundays. You should research tours not associated with the boat. We found the same tours to be literally half the price, and nowhere near as crowded. also offers tours. Dont Forget to calculate tipping. You can pay it on your credit card or offer cash at the end of the cruise. Gratuity guidelines for each ship are found easily online. And they might feel somewhat high, but once you see how much they work for you, you wonder if you would do it yourself for the suggested gratuity. We Tipped a little bit extra. As I found out the front of the ship is always moving. So if this bothers you, you should get a room towards the back.

Pros: The staff was extremely professional, hard working and friendly. I loved that the day is posted on all elevator floors so you don't lose track of the day!

Cons: It was a little difficult to come in from the ports between 4-6 and be ready for dinner seating at 6:00PM. Coffee at the Windjammer was not the best

Recommends Explorer of the Seas? Yes!

Children's Programs
There were plenty of children on this cruise. Our kids are adults but I checked it out for my three grandchildren (1,3 and 10 y/0) They have Arcade, Baby sitting areas, baby sitting service. different age appropriate activities. Teenagers have a Teenage only area. they are carefully watched and even I was not allowed in to the teenage area to take a picture when there were kids there. (I went when it was closed) so you know your teenager is not going to be approached by "strange" adults. there are cameras everywhere. security and safety are tight.
Ship Quality
This is Great Ship. Very huge. I needed to take a morning to "visit" the areas I had not seen - to get pictures.
Food and Dining
If you like to go off to Port. The 6:00 PM dining time was not very convenient, Specially with kids as you have to change for the dining room.
Cabin / Stateroom
Interior stateroom size was actually very comfortable for two of us. I believe the small sofa was a sofa bed. decor is very relaxing. Shampoo and soap are freely available. the room was always kept very clean
Service and Staff
The staff is very friendly and everyone will go out of their way to help... even maintenance personnel would help. Bring small bills for individual tipping which is welcomed and very well deserved
There is so much entertainment that it is hard to know where to start. There are games, shows, Ice skating shows, comedians, music, concerts etc. main evening entertainments are usually offered twice a night. I do recommend that you get there at least half hour earlier as you might not find seats even if you have a ticket. They request you get a ticket for some shows. they will announce distribution time and place. But get there early anyway with your whole party as you can not save seats.

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