Different than U.S. Caribbean Cruises...
MSC Magnifica Cruise Review to Europe - Eastern Mediterranean
Sail Date: March 31, 2012
Ship: MSC Magnifica
Cabin Type: Balcony
Traveled As: Family (young children)
Reviewed: 6 years ago
We found MSC Cruises after doing a search of European cruises leaving Venice, Italy during spring break 2012. We had been on a Royal Caribbean Cruise in the same area in 2011, but wanted to see Venice but not be stuck in the city for 7 days, so we decided to cruise the Mediterranean and see a few ports we had missed in 2011.
It was our 1st time aboard a MSC Cruise (long time RCL members), and we always found ourselves comparing MSC to RCL - as we have always found RCL to cater to our wants and needs very well. The cruise was nice, although we found that the time in the different ports seemed rushed (arrived in Croatia at 12:30 pm and had to be back on board at 4:30 pm, etc.).
As I have seen in other reviews, the staff attitude was mixed. Some gave 110% throughout the cruise (great Mini Kid's Club staff), and others looked like they were sleepwalking their way through the entire cruise. Most of the wait staff in the cafeteria buffets did not really care to clean off tables of dishes so others could sit and eat unless asked to do so. With the number of people coming and going during the breakfast and lunch rush, you would think that they would help keep things moving. Unfortunately, they were only interested in getting you to order drinks that carried a charge such as premium coffees, orange juice and bottled water. It has ALWAYS amazed me that you could order and eat 3 dinner entrees at a seating, but you still have to pay 2.63 EURO for a liter of still water to eat with your meal...
Now, the buffet lines on any cruise can be tough to navigate (people act they have never eaten and are starving), but I'm sorry to say that the European and Asian passengers on board have NO idea what a queue is for... They push and shove just about anywhere to get what THEY want, WHEN THEY WANT. After teaching our 7 year old to wait his turn in line and that it is only polite to do so, it's hard to explain to him why a family of 2 adults and 3 kids nearly knocked him over to get in front of everyone to get to the newly served "Pasta Station". This was our biggest complaint while on board -- it happened everywhere on the ship. There is really no reason to be rude on a cruise. There WILL be plenty of food for everyone, but obviously some people don't think so.
Rude passengers are not the fault of the cruise line, but you would think that there could be SOMEONE in authority available around the different areas of the ship to keep people from jumping the queue and acting like hungry savages.
All in all, the MSC Cruise was OK. They tried to do their best to meet everyone's needs and wants, but TOO much space on the boat was dedicated to lounges and bars. Just my personal opinion, but more space could be given to entertainment venues, rather than make everyone choose to drink or drink and smoke.
Food and Dining
Service and Staff
Cabin / Stateroom
Pros: Nice big ship, great kids club
Cons: Not much to do on board if you don't drink in one of their 14 bars