Jewel of the Seas Cruise Review to Coastal - West Coast

Third Mate

4-6 cruises


Helpful Votes

4 out of 5

Great ride and great visits....

Sail Date: May 16, 2015

Reviewed: 1 year ago

Traveled As: Singles/Friends

Room Type: Balcony

My sisters and I wanted to spend some quality time together and decided a repositioning cruise would suit our needs...six days together from our own 'home port' of San Diego was a perfect event.  I had not done a Royal Caribbean cruise before and am happy to report that it was a pleasant experience overall and part of our pleasure was that the head of guest services heard our plea for space before we sailed and, as there was a sudden cancellation, we were accommodated well above our expectations: veranda room on deck 5 to a Jr. Suite on deck 10.  Needless to say, Guest Services outdid themselves on our behalf during a hectic and overwhelming boarding process.  We were in our new cabin before muster drill!!!  We took our meals in either the dining room (my time...) or the Windjammer Café aboard the Jewel of the Seas.  The food was tasty, appropriate temperature, and abundant choices prevailed in both dining rooms. Our service there was also excellent and attentive.

Cabin as originally assigned, deck 5 (#7550), while intended by us to serve three as it had a 'couch/sleeper' was upon arrival,  woefully small and totally inadequate for even two average size individuals.  It would have been hopeless for three for six days.  Serious failure on the part of the cruise line in configuring adequate space is a drawback I would point out to anyone considering this ship.  Our 'upgrade' literally save our cruise from disaster.  Also, even the Jr. Suite had only two outlets for use and none in the bathroom.  This seems a little stingy given our proclivities today to be constantly plugged in to something.  A bathroom outlet is not a is a necessity today.

  We honestly didn't partake in any much of the onboard 'fun and games' which cruising has become to symbolize.  We did take in two of the shows -- they didn't suit my taste as they were a little too razzle dazzle Vegas style with overly amplified music, strobe lighting and blindingly vivid colored costumes.  The evening music in the atrium area as pleasant and enjoyable to listen to and was audible from any deck area in the immediate vicinity.  Shopping was plentiful with constant sales and promotions.  Shore excursion offerings were varied and generally reasonably price, though we one did one.  It was excellent and a good value.

Overall, it was a pleasant experience given that it carried its full complement of passengers....large ships do not appeal to me, but except for the embarkation and the debarkation I never felt overwhelmed by the numbers.  I am simply a traveler who prefers a smaller more personalized experience if traveling with a group.  I'm also willing to pay the cost of those voyages when necessary.  I choose by itinerary primarily not onboard party offerings.  I was pleasantly surprised and pleased to not that Royal Caribbean does not cater to children and their needs.  This is a plus...there were plenty of children, young and parent dependent but they were with families who provided the needed care and entertainment.

I have traveled on Carnival (nevermore!!!), Holland America, Renaissance and Seabourn cruise lines in the past. I am a senior retired professional woman who does travel extensively independently and with spouse. 


Ship Quality
shortage of electrical outlets in cabin, ad hoc beverage prices
Food and Dining
"My Time Dining" a bit confusing but a great idea. Wide variety of dishes on offer at all meals. Hours of availabilty good and convenient for port calls.
Service and Staff
Excellent dining room wait staff and hostessing. We had a very poor cabin attendant who really wasn't well suited for the position in terms of training or aptitude or language skills.
Adequate for those who do enjoy Vegas lounge shows . Music (piano, guitar, vocalists, etc.) in public atrium area entertaining and varied.
Children's Programs
No experience....
Onboard Activities
Didn' really participate in the run of the mill offerings. Best thing: the Captain's talk. Would like more info from professional staff on points of interest in ports.
Destinations and Excursions
Destination was the primary reason for our choice. We did one shore excursion which was well priced and an outstanding itinerary for us.
Cabin / Stateroom
While sq. footage is clearly stated in advance this is a difficult figure to visualize in 'real time' and the room was far too small for even two normal sized individuals...and the bathroom even more cramped with a shower not even close to the size of a phone booth. This is no exaggeration! A small cabin is one thing, but the photos are enhanced via lenses to be deceptive. We were three in the space and the third was to have slept on a pull out oversized chair. It is not untrue when I state that to cross the cabin between the bed and the wall one had to maneuver sideways. Where to stash the luggage? On the veranda? Also, a shortage of electrical plugs is not acceptable given today's demand for electrical connectivity....the bathroom had no plug as an example. I think cruise lines -- like airlines -- should definitely reexamine their policy on customer comfort and let a bit of the 'bottom line' mentality drift. I was completely appalled and taken aback!
San Diego, California
Embarkation was a complete nightmare due to the port's poor planning and staffing. A two hour wait in line is not conducive to a happy departure or good memoy of San Diego.
Catalina Island, California
Wonderful! A great port call: relaxing, friendly and interesting place to visit. Do the "Behind the Scenes" tour offered by the Catalina Island Conservancy.
San Francisco, California
Take the F Trolley Car from the pier around to Powell and Market walk up three blocks to Union Square and have a ball! Ride the HO/HO bus, shop 'til you drop', ride the cable cars, walk through Chinatown..... The F car is a ticket to adventure -- easy, convenient and cheap.
Victoria, British Columbia
One of Canada's Jewels! Don't miss the Inner Harbor, Tea at the Empress, the House of Parliament or the B.C. Museum--all right together and ready to be explored on foot.
Vancouver (Canada Place), British Columbia
Vancouver is also a gem of a port to visit: people are wonderful and warm hearted. The sights are varied and the restaruants and hotels offer something for every pocketbook and taste. This was my first visit, but won't be my last.


Elevator access was difficult in my judgment for any passenger with mobility issues (I was not one of them). I would strongly suggest implementing a single car for those with accessibility issues as restrooms do. They simply had to fight to get aboard and I felt badly about that.

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