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wishIwascruising

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  1. We planned a B2B Alaskan cruise on the Radiance of the Seas in mid-August 2022. We had zero expectations and were cruising on RC because a family member planned this small reunion cruise for us. We chose an Oceanview cabin, 4518. We were very pleased with the room with the exception of the storage in the closet. The bathroom was a decent size, we had a small sitting area (the sofa was a little dingy and had some worn areas but seemed clean). We really enjoyed the large window. We have cruised Alaska several times and remembered with some drizzly weather we didn’t really use the balcony as much, so didn’t want to pay the extra expense of space we wouldn’t utilize. We didn’t hear any noise above or below but did hear voices from cabins with shared walls (although I do feel the occupants of those rooms were very loud talkers). A big Bravo for the toilets. The pressure for flushing was great. I remember that’s always been a little problematic on Princess. The mattress was comfortable and we asked for feather pillows instead of the foam ones and they were delivered immediately. Our room steward couldn’t have been more wonderful. He met our every expectation and even exceeded them. Because we had previously only cruised on Princess, that was our comparison. We actually enjoyed the size of the ship, especially for Alaska. We thought it was in really good shape. We felt the Atrium was very small and we walked through there many times a day to return to our room. We thought the hallways were narrow. I like the recessed doorways on Princess so much more. Early on, 1 of the main elevators stopped working and at one other time, another elevator was not functioning either. It started working again but we did have one non-functioning elevator for at least 1 week. The gym was fine and never crowded. Food was good, not great. We ate All of our dinners in our assigned dining room. Our waiters were wonderful. We had the same table and waiters for both weeks of the cruise. Portions seemed appropriate and numerous times they brought us additional desserts. We did eat lunch and most breakfasts at the Windjammer. They did have a Boardwalk Dog House for hotdogs. It was subpar. We didn’t eat in any of the specialty dining restaurants. We don’t drink alcohol so can’t review bar service. We felt there was always available seating for the Windjammer. Sometimes we had to look for a minute but always found space. There were other areas to eat outside or near the Park Café by the Solarium Pool. There was ample staff to keep tables cleared off and beverages offered. In regards to staff, let me just say that I felt they were friendlier, more helpful and more accommodating than Princess. I am basing this on a May 2022 Princess cruise I just took to the Mediterranean. The Radiance of the Seas staff was exceptional in my opinion. Everyone greeted me, offered a smile, made a comment besides just “Hello”. It was refreshing. Sometimes we would cross paths with management staff and we experienced the same thing. We were always asked where we were from and if we were enjoying our cruise. The exception to that was, the Captain. He was basically non-existent. I know that he has a bigger job than being cordial to guests but we NEVER SAW HIM and only heard announcements from him twice in 2 weeks. I’m used to the Captain telling us when we would arrive in a port , what the weather was going to be, or when it would be time to disembark, what deck, and what time to return to the ship, etc. Those announcements didn’t occur. It was frustrating. We were waiting for an announcement to know when we could leave the ship. We finally just looked for the appropriate deck to disembark from and remarked to staff how frustrated we were that no announcements were made. We were told that an announcement was going to be made at 9:00 am. That’s great for those that don’t have an excursion planned for 8:30 am. Another frustrating thing was when announcements were made by other staff, they frequently didn’t speak English clearly and it was hard to decipher what they were saying. This was especially problematic when it was a safety announcement. If you don’t like announcements and general information given, you would have enjoyed this cruise. Also, it was frustrating that we were not able to communicate with other guests via texting without paying a daily fee. You should be able to communicate with other guests using the RC APP. I felt the Internet pkg offered was very expensive. Princess allows you to message other guests using their APP, no fee. This particular RC Ship did NOT have self-service laundry available for guests. That was challenging especially since we were on the ship for 2 weeks. The last area of review was Entertainment. It went from bad to dismal to worse. The movie theater was very small and showed very old movies., not classic movies, just OLD movies. We saw one floor show “Piano Man”. It just wasn’t that good. There were some good moments and 1 or 2 really good singers. We saw a couple other featured performers. It was ho, hum! The musicians were very good and we enjoyed listening to them on other occasions throughout the ship and in other venues. We attended many trivia challenges which was enjoyable. The Talent Show was so bad that people just walked out. Is there no audition to qualify those that want to perform? All in All, will we cruise on Royal Caribbean again, probably if we like the itinerary. It was an enjoyable cruise.
  2. Yes, I had our cruise re-fared multiple times before and after final payment, no problems at all. I booked directly with Princess.
  3. Unless the Captain got off the Regal after May 28th, 2022, it is Captain Paolo Arrigo. He stopped by our dinner table twice during our cruise and I saw him when we were disembarking on the 28th. He was very personable.
  4. We just got off the Regal (May 21-28, 2022). We thought the Wifi was very slow and had difficulty at night which is not what other posters have stated. The night before our cruise ended I went to the Service Desk to talk to them and they told me to go to Internet Cafe and speak to the Manager (he leaves at 8:00 pm) and he will adjust our bill. I did go speak to him and he asked me what the problems were. I stated that on Tuesday & Wednesday nights we had ZERO wifi. He concurred and said that they had Satellite problems on both those nights. He adjusted my bill for those 2 nights. I wish I could tell you the amount he adjusted it but I got distracted, and he said he would do it and I walked away.
  5. We just returned (May 21-28, 2022) from the Regal. We had a Club Class Mini Suite. It will be hard to go back to just booking a Balcony stateroom. We loved Club Class! We showed up for embarkation lunch and found the Dining Room that was serving lunch (they always try so hard to keep that a secret for some reason) and when we checked in, we were informed that we had a different dining room for embarkation lunch and they walked us down one floor to our assigned Club Class Dining Room. From that point on, we were treated royally. Allan and his team were our waiters. They were wonderful and knew our names and likes and dislikes from that point forward. We had an extended balcony stateroom, midship, Baja Deck. It was worth the extra cost but I continued to monitor rates and got our price reduced many times, even after full payment.
  6. We just stayed (May 2022) at the Room Mate Carla Hotel. It is a lovely boutique hotel, wonderful amenities, perfectly located in Las Rambles area and a breakfast spread that was AMAZING! There are several Room Mate Hotels in Europe. I would stay at the Room Mate Carla Hotel again and again.
  7. We had our Antigen tests in May 2022 at a Barcelona Lab that I think has several locations. The name is "Laboratorio Echevarne". It was an impressive clinic, the test costs $23 Eu and we had our results on our phone within about 40 minutes. You could also request a paper copy of results but you would have to wait around for that. You walk in, use a monitor to request what services you want and what language preferred. You were given a number and went a large waiting room. When your number was shown you went to the designated room and had the test. It was fast, friendly and inexpensive. I was very impressed considering I had to pay over $100 for the same test in the US several months earlier. I have to say when we boarded our ship the next day, they didn't even look at the results, they only looked that we had the form on our phone that we received the test.
  8. We are cruising on the Regal in May 2022. On March 8th, I booked an excursion through Princess to Cinque Terre. Today, March 18th, my husband noticed a credit on our credit card account for the exact amount of that excursion. Evidently Princess cancelled our reservation and this particular excursion is no longer shown as an available tour. After we booked, there were 4 slots left. There is another tour (same day) to Cinque Terre for 10 hrs for $199.95. The cancelled tour was only 8 hours which was more desirable for us. I can see that same tour available on other dates so it's not like they cancelled the vendor. I am annoyed that if my husband hadn't been paying attention to the activity on our credit card we might not have become aware of this change until much later, and probably not at all from Princess. I called Princess twice today but after waiting for over 1 hr. 45 min for one call and over 1 hr for another, I gave up for today. Has this happened to other Princess cruisers?
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