Arrived at the parking lot by the E terminal. It was not right in front of our terminal but just a short walk. (Paid 66 bucks for a 4 days cruise) We dropped off bags and entered terminal at 1030. There was a line for check in and we were checked in by 1115. We were giving boarding zone 11 and sent to the waiting area. At 1130 there still were no boarding numbers being called.
Numbers started being called at 1140
We were on the ship by 12.
Easy package you can’t pay the difference for premium drinks. They charge you full price for anything over $6. As far as drink options for the easy drink package, there were tons. If you bring your own cup they will fill that cup up for you. Red Bull is also included as well as bubbly water. You can get vitamin water up in the spa bar outside the gym. Great to take to the room at night for morning hangovers. We got it during the day so I’m not sure how late that bar is open. The only issue I had with the easy package was I couldn’t add just a shot of baileys to my coffee drinks. However there is a cold espresso drink with baileys in it that’s included. I found that a little annoying but not a deal breaker. Another tip is find Maria the bartender. She’s up at the pool bar during the day and then the Jazz bar at night. She was top notch! We tipped her a dollar each time but we were very well taken care of.
The drill started at 4pm and finished around 430. We did take life our life jackets and some put theirs on but we did not.
We had room number 8243 which was a balcony room towards the aft of the ship. We were surprised to have a bath tub (figures this was a kids free trip). There was some mold in the corner but not bad. We could feel the engines really bad when pulling in and out of the ports but nothing while we were sailing.
Pizza in the buffet was amazing. Good buffet choices. We only did the sit down dinner once and it was just ok. Not as good as Royal or carnival in my opinion
Breakfast buffet was very standard and seating is hard to find around 930-10am. We did not do the sit down breakfast. Food venues were limited to the main dining room, buffet, and a small snack station but pizza was my go to. There was also a sports bar that served food at night which was also one of my favorite places to eat. The McCarthy salad and wings were great!! I got those items every night.
We tried the theater show on day 2. It was some sorta singing and acrobats but it wasn’t very entertaining and we left after 10 mins. We usually spent our time in the casino and had luck with the goldfish game and playboy game (both in the smoke free section). Paid out pretty well on minimum bets. I think we came ahead in the end.
Lighthouse bar is cool. It’s right by the water. We went on a day that was super windy so some of the beaches did not allow swimming which made finding a spot to snorkel impossible. They had a buffet with some food choices but we ate on the ship in the buffet instead (had some of the same choices). We went back out to the beach around 8pm and sat by the fires and enjoyed the 4 min light house light show.
There was also a food truck right on the beach with burgers and hotdog and fries. When ordering drinks on the island you have to see one of the waiters walking around outside the bar area taking orders. They take your order and relay it to the bartenders. Pretty quick process once you figure out who takes your order.
I found it hard to find something to do during the dinner hours if you decide to not do the sit down dinner. Where as with Royal Caribbean there was also something fun to do throughout the entire day.
We left Ocean Cay at around 11pm and we’re pulling into Miami at 545am
Embarking was not as bad as other reviews made it out to be. Got into the exit line at 730am and we were outside by 8am. And that was also with the little hiccup we had while exiting the ship. We used a debit card for our on board expenses and we had a $200 limit and had an $80 balance. My husband was pulled away to another short line to pay his balance. If you set up your on board expenses with a credit then they just charge your card.
Overall not a bad cruise. It was a nice 4 day kids free cruise. I would sail MSC again if the price was right.