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REVIEW: Rhapsody of the Seas 1-2-05

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Rhapsody of the Seas

January 2, 2005

Stateroom #8088 JS (Junior Suite)

 

For a little background, we are a mid-30 something couple traveling with our 19 month old daughter. This was our second cruise; our first being on Celebrity’s Infinity. I will be making some comparisons to the two experiences during this review.

 

Embarkation:

 

Based on recommendations from Cruise Critic, we arrived at the pier between 1pm and 1:30pm after driving down from my in-laws in Houston. I dropped off my wife and daughter, found a porter, gave him the bags, and went off to park at EZCruiseParking. When I arrived I found a line of about five cars waiting to park. At one point, I pulled out of line and said I had a reservation and wanted to park. It turned out that both Rhapsody of the Seas and Carnival’s Elation had been delayed arriving into port due to heavy fog. I had to go back to the end of the line which had grown to about 15 at this point. We could not park until the passengers from the previous cruise had disembarked and driven their cars away. I waited an hour until I could park our car. I had no phone and no way of contacting my wife who also had no phone (after all we are on vacation). She was not pleased when I finally showed up, but she did have the tickets and passports.

 

After going through security, we stood waiting in line to get checked in. I had my wife wait while I walked forward and found a line for suites and C&A Diamond and Platinum members. I asked if passengers booked in a JS Cabin could use this line and was told I could. I left one small bag and asked some others in line to watch it and went and got my wife and daughter. While standing in line we were given a letter informing us of the change from Grand Cayman to Costa Maya. We had already known of the change having checked the Cayman Port authority website the week before. However the RCCL website still showed our itinerary as including Grand Cayman and I was told the customer service agents had that same information.

 

After check-in, we were told to wait in three different places. We were finally led into the area for Suites and C&A Platinum and Diamond members. We were also told boarding would not begin until around 4pm. It was now almost 3pm. As soon as I glanced at my watch, the door leading to the gangway was opened. We were through the door, passed the embarkation photo and on the ship by 3:30. We went right to our cabin, dropped off our bags and then went to the Windjammer to grab a bite to eat.

 

Our Stateroom:

 

After we ate, we started to explore the ship and headed back to the cabin to discover the various nooks and crannies. We found plenty of storage in various places you expect and a few you might not expect in our cabin. I have to say we loved loved loved the balcony of this corner aft stateroom. It wraps around to the port side. You cannot see up the side of the ship, but you have an incredible field of view from this cabin. My wife spent many hours soaking up the sun and reading her book.

 

We did find the carpeting, furniture covers and bedding to be a little dated. Of course this is a ship that was put in service in 1997. We found cigarette butts on our balcony floor and the chairs were covered with grit and grime. We never mentioned anything about them because there are certain things we feel we should not HAVE to mention. The Plexiglas under the railing was pretty dirty and was never cleaned throughout the week though the balcony doors were. One note about those doors, they can be locked open (or closed) in just about any position. One time we had not locked them and they slammed shut just as my daughter had crossed the threshold out onto the balcony.

 

We had wanted to meet our stateroom attendant just to say hello, but for everything we left a note requesting it was done. I imagined they were all really thrown off because of the late disembarking passengers. I finally did meet our stateroom attendant, Dean, on about the third day. He and other stateroom attendants always had a hello and a smile for our daughter. Well all but one woman who was working cabins at the beginning of the hallway from the Centrum elevators. She never seemed to smile and came across as quite gruff.

 

Dining:

 

We were seated at table #066 with a younger couple from Kansas and a couple that had been cruising many times before. He was the guest lecturer on the cruise, and he and his wife had been married for over 53 years. We sat at second seating which we will not repeat. It is just too late for someone as young as our daughter to handle. We missed most of the shows as we tried to get something in our daughter’s stomach before dinner. We had two wonderful waiters in the Edelweiss dining room named Robert from Romania and Serghy from the Ukraine near the Black Sea. We saw Serghy in the mornings in the Windjammer. He always made a point to come over and say hello. Our headwaiter was Collin from India. I did attempt to request a special dessert for our 8th anniversary the last night of the cruise. Unfortunately, they chef was not able to make it, but Collin did make sure our daughter had a plate of grapes and other fruit as soon as she sat down.

 

Fellow Passengers:

 

There was a surprising amount of families on board. We saw several strollers throughout the ship. We also saw several school aged children whom we thought would have been back in school. The issue that was quite unnerving was a large group of “non-English” speaking passengers. They would cut in line with no regard for other passengers. They would party in their stateroom until 5AM. On the third night, I looked out of our stateroom at 4:40 in the morning to see security banging on their cabin door two staterooms from ours. They never answered the door. I could hear the party continue to go on with the balcony doors closed. Because I had walked out on my balcony and see which stateroom they were partying in, I wrote a letter to the hotel director that morning.

 

I told him of the “Guest Vacation Policy” that had been bandied about again and again and while we were not fuddy-duddies by any stretch of the imagination, we felt it was a bit too much when there were several public lounges for them to congregate at such late hours. I did receive a call two days later from a woman in Guest Relations who told me the hotel director had met with the group in smaller groups and told them in no uncertain terms that the mere hint of a whisper from them would get them offloaded at the next port of call which at this point was Cozumel.

 

You can never know in advance who your fellow passengers will be, but their activities and rudeness really put a damper on the cruise. We managed to still have an enjoyable time, but we would not have missed this group of passengers. We were appalled how they were accommodated again and again. At one dinner, one table arrived an hour late and were served dinner. I have been told that on other lines they would have been told to go eat at the buffet. I even asked Collin if this was typical and he said no but the wait staff had just been told to put up with it for this week.

 

On a final note, on the last night of the cruise the programming on the television had been changed to show CNN in their language and show the same soccer game on four separate channels including one that had been CNN in English.

 

Ports of Call:

 

Our itinerary was to have been Galveston-Key West-Grand Cayman-Cozumel-Galveston with sea days on Day 2, Day 4 and Day 7. As mentioned before, we had been told on arrival the pier of the substitution of Costa Maya for Grand Cayman. Because of the fog, we were told by the Captain that we were going to get fuel in Miami and we would not make it to Costa Maya. So:

 

Key West:

 

This reminded me of the French Quarter in New Orleans. Being in the middle of winter, the sun set really soon after our arrival as the ship stays on central time. We arrived and disembarked at 3:30 ship’s time which was already 4:30 in Key West. We took the Conch train tour which was not really worth the money or it could have been the narrator on the tour. We then went back on the ship as the bar scene is really not our thing.

 

Miami:

 

While booking my next cruise, I found out the Loyalty Ambassador was from Miami. I asked her the day before of suggestions of things to do with our little girl. The South Beach scene was really not for us as we are hardly the “beautiful people”. She suggested the Children’s museum and Parrot Jungle Island. We ended up playing with more of the display at the Children’s museum than our daughter which was just the next bridge over from the dock and a $10 cab ride away. After over two hours, she was really beat so we just got another cab and went back to the ship.

 

To Be continued in next post:

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Continued from previous post

Cozumel:

 

This port made it all worth it for us. As soon as we disembarked, we got in a taxi and headed to Paradise Beach. We had read so much about it on the boards that we just wanted to check it out. The cab driver tried to talk us into going to another beach which had horseback riding and things he said were not at Paradise Beach. We told him we really wanted to go to Paradise Beach. He backed off and took us right there. The cab fare was USD $12. We were the first ship that arrived in port and we had our pick of spots to choose. We ended up right in front of the second story restaurant the second row back from the water. The water felt wonderful and the sun was just divine. I burn easily so you might have seen me wearing my shirt and making sure the umbrella completely shaded me.

 

It truly was Paradise. We had a wonderful time there. It was so worth the USD $5 we paid to use all of the water equipment. You should note the restaurant and drink prices are typical of a resort and you paid a bit more of a premium to eat there. Also note they do NOT take American Express. They just take cash, Visa and MasterCard. I met one of my fellow cruise critic members who said that members of her group had taken the all day party boat drinking excursion and had had a wonderful time. The tables at the dining room were a more empty that night.

 

Meet and Mingle:

 

This almost did not happen. Those of us in the roll call thread had been checking the website for the date and location as well as the numbers daily. By the time, we left we had 54 people confirmed as several in the thread were bringing large groups with them. A few people had posted they had received an email confirmation that the quota had been met. The morning it had been scheduled (Thursday January 6, 2005 according to the website) I went to talk to Jennifer, the Loyalty Ambassador, and asked if she would be at the M&M. She told me that there was not one scheduled and besides it was always held on Wednesday which was the typical sea day. They had been told from Miami that there was not to be an M&M on this cruise. I explained our situation and what we had seen on the website and the email confirmations. About an hour later, we received an invitation that had showed the day as Wednesday which was scratched out and replaced with Thursday.

 

We ended up with about a dozen members at our Meet and Mingle. It was so fun putting faces to names we had talked to only online. One member knew us right away when I came up the stairs carrying my daughter in her stroller. Jennifer was very apologetic at the breakdown in communication and thanked me for bringing it to her attention. Jennifer also told me there are people at RCCL whose sole job is to read message boards like these and others. They like to get the feedback, both positive and negative. They watch for trends. We had a nice question and answer session with Jennifer. I wish they had been a bit more on the ball, but these things happen. The only thing I could figure was someone had looked at last year’s calendar, saw January 6 as being a Wednesday, and put that date up on the website.

 

In-Cabin Babysitting:

 

As we were cruising by ourselves, we chose this line in part because it is the only one of a few that offers in-cabin babysitting. I went down on the first night to make arrangements for three evenings and requested that we have the same person each night. Myro from facilities who was from the Ukraine arrived promptly on-time the first requested night. We spent a little time getting to know her and just immediately felt comfortable with her. When we returned, she said our daughter cried for about five minutes and then went to bed. We basically paid for her to watch her sleep, but there was someone in the room with her while we were away. We would gladly use this service again. The cost is $8 per hour (for one child) paid in cash to the person who does the babysitting.

 

Disembarkation:

 

The last day at sea, I made a change with Jennifer for early seating as we had discovered that second seating was not going to work with a young child. It was one of those live and learn moments. As I walked away, she asked me if she would see me tomorrow in the Viking Crown Lounge. I said yes I guess so, not really sure what that meant. She knew this was our first time on RCCL and was not even a member yet. It turns out that the VCL is a private departure lounge for C&A Platinum and Diamond members. She had given me a verbal invitation. It was nice to wait in that comfortable area with a few other passengers instead of in a hot lounge. I need to mention here that several members of the group of “non-English” speakers were called several times to report to immigration. I was told that they typically like to sleep in. She told us that no one could get off the ship until after all non-US residents had been through immigration.

 

She also had us go down as soon as the first passengers were finally cleared to begin disembarking even though they had not called our colour tag. Even though they had called a certain colour, it seemed everyone was just embarking from the ship no matter their coloured tag. (Maybe they were all told like we were to just head on down.) We were off the ship by 9AM. Found our bags and were on the bus to EZCruiseParking. Let me tell you the best tip I ever received came from Cruise Critic. We line our bags with brightly coloured duct tape. It made it so much easier to find our bags in the sea of dark green and black just in our bag tag section colour alone.

 

Final thoughts both positive and negative:

 

I know that this ship has a great many fans. However, based on our experience we have decided that it would take a heck of a deal to have us book this ship again. While we loved our waiters, stateroom attendant, and others mentioned in this review, we noticed several times where people were not going above and beyond the call of duty.

 

There was a lighting grate that covered the fluorescent lights on either side of the hallway that lay in the hallway for the last four days of the cruise. Our daughter stepped on it several times. We saw both stateroom attendants and maintenance personnel walk past it. We never once felt like someone took ownership of the problem.

 

We felt that the “non-English” speakers were really accommodated more than they should have been. While waiting to speak with the purser’s desk, one of that group cut in front of us and were helped instead of being told to go to the back of the line.

 

The dirt and grime and cigarette butts on our balcony really were a negative. We consider the balcony that we paid for as a premium to be an extension of the room and felt it should have been taken care of.

 

The one time we left a breakfast menu on our stateroom door was before Cozumel. I just happened to look out our door, and it had not been picked up. We were not going to receive breakfast in our room as expected and ended up going to the Windjammer instead. Maybe because we had not left one out all week, we were just overlooked. While not cruise ruining at all, I find little things like this example to be one area where the experience was diminished.

 

We were trying to compare this cruise to a hotel and came up with La Quinta that made up your room twice a day and turned down your bed with chocolates on the pillow. It was not horrible, but it was not that great either.

 

Our next cruise will be on Celebrity’s Millennium next January. Perhaps when our daughter is older, we will consider taking a cruise on the newer and larger RCCL ships. However, I think this cruise on Rhapsody of the Seas has been our one and only experience.

 

With all of that said, we still did not have too cook and clean for a week. We came back tanned, well-rested and relaxed. No matter the disappointments, we still thoroughly managed to make the best out of our experience.

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Hi,

 

 

Sorry your trip on Rhapsody wasn't the best - we are going on Feb 13 for our first cruise. We are also thinking of taking kids next summer on Sovereign. Our daughter will be around 19 mos at that time. I'm glad that in-room babysitting worked for you - we may try that. I also think we will definitely need 1st seating for her. Any other tips for traveling with toddler? Did you take your own pack-n-play for sleeping or use the ship's? Were you able to keep her occupied on the ship on sea days?

 

Thanks!

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Flagger,

 

I must say this is a very well written review, with solid points, good and poor. As you may remember I am one of those Rhapsody & RCI Fans, but also feel Celb is a notch above. Thanks for a well presented review.

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I was also on this cruise, it was my third time to cruise the Rhapsody. We had 26 people with us, except for my husband and I and my children no one had been on a cruise before. I very suprised abou how un organized RCCL was. I know the fog and the delays were unexpected, but I would have thought they could have handled things a little better at the pier, and it seemed like it stayed that way through the rest of the cruise. I don't know how many times I said to the ones who had not ever cruised, it usually isnt like this. I was dissapointed about how some of the things on the ship, but we still had a great time!!

 

I have sailed Carnival, Celebrity, Princess, I am a Diamond member on RCCL. I will be back on Rhapsody. I still think it is one of the friendliest ships I have been on. Some of the non english speaking passengers were very rude, but I have sailed with some English speaking passengers out of other ports that were very rude also. I just like the people that sail on the Rhapsody, most of the time!!

 

Flagger, I think I saw you in the VCL, my infact my son, the one who could hardly speak, for partiing to much, talked to your daughter, she was crying and I hear him talking to her, I thought she might have been toothing. We also went to Paradise Beach and loved it!!

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Hi, Sorry to hear that your fellow cruise passengers put a damper on your cruise. We have just booked this cruise for next Oct..Could you tell me how many formal nights there are? Also how far is the port from George Bush airport ? This will be our fifth cruise two on Celeberty and two Royal Carribean, the first cruise we took was one of the best and it was on the Rhapsody. Un fortunately rude people can really bring things down.

Thanks for the Info

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There are two formal nights, the first one is the 2nd night on the sea day and I am not sure about the other.

 

The Port is about 1-1/4 hours from IAH.smile.gif

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ny other tips for traveling with toddler? Did you take your own pack-n-play for sleeping or use the ship's? Were you able to keep her occupied on the ship on sea days?
Yes we were able to keep her occupied during sea days. I know from a previous review that we could have gone with her to play in Adventure Ocean, but we just decided to walk around the deck A LOT.

 

They provided a PNP crib, but based on our experience on our last cruise; we brought a Safety 1st collapsible Bed Rail. It just fits inside of a 28" rolling bag, but you could also hand carry it. We just had the sofa covered with a sheet and then slid the rail under the cushions. Here is a pic of it in use on Infinity last September.

 

sleepingcocoa.jpg

 

She was able to crawl out of the sofa which was quite weird one night when it felt like something from Alien crawling up and over us to get in bed with us.

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Hi, Sorry to hear that your fellow cruise passengers put a damper on your cruise. We have just booked this cruise for next Oct..Could you tell me how many formal nights there are?
Formal nights are Monday and Thursday.

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Flagger, thanks for the honest review. I'm sorry the Rhapsody didn't live up to your expectations. Seems there were quite a few downfalls during that trip. We will be on the Rhapsody in a couple of weeks and having sailed her before, my expectations are pretty high. Hopefully, this was an off week for her crew.

 

Thanks again for the review! :D

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flagger .... Always TOTALLY enjoy reading ALL of your posts! Great review -- informative and fun to read!

 

Happy Sailing! OCruisers :)

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i went with my folks and best friend on this cruise back in 2001. although i had a good time, i was only 17. my best friend was 18. we wanted to go party at whatever it was called at the top. but i wasn't old enough, so that really sucked. over all though, i had a blast and whenever i think about it, i miss it a lot.

 

well, this year i'm going on this same cruise on sept. 25, 2005. i'm getting married the day before, so this is really exciting. we're going to be celebrating our honeymoon, but we've already reserved our cruise with 2 different last names. since we won't be married until the day before, can it be changed when we board?

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This review is a great example of how passengers and unexpected things like weather can have a trickle down effect. We were on the same cruise November 28th - you can do a search to find my little review too - and while our expectations were lower than those we have on Celebrity, we had a great time and everything went perfectly. The ship looked great and no problems with our M&M. Just goes to show that cruising is all about timing and making the most of what you have. sounds like Flagger handled the events that were negative in a positive manner and made the best out of bad situations. Millennium is my favorite ship so I'm sure you will have a great time next January.

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Some thoughts that popped up after I submitted this review. I also wanted to add some comparisons between this and my only other cruise experience.

 

I missed how on Celebrity, they carry your tray to the table. Many times our daughter wanted to be pushed in her stroller, so you can imagine how it was trying to finagle a tray, a stroller, plus drinks and find a table.

 

For me food wise, there were more misses than hits but I do not eat seafood. Ms. Flagger had many seafood dishes and had more hits than misses at least in the dining room. We did find the food better on Celebrity. FWIW, I came back having lost five pounds.

 

We thought the placement of the Solarium Cafe was poorly planned. Why have an area for adults only and then put the pizza, burger, hot dog, fry bar inside the area?

 

We missed having juice available all day like on Celebrity. We could get fruit, apple and orange juice all day long on our Alaskan cruise. Lemonade just gets boring and was never mixed right for our taste.

 

I have no idea why people ask who is the CD on a certain cruise. The one on ours reminded me of someone who should be doing the weather on a small market television station. I even heard him talking in the halls after barely saying hello to us one evening how he couldn't wait until he was off this ship "in 29 days". For a ship that attracts many first time cruisers who do not read cruise critic or know about contracts, etc, hearing this might make them wonder if he cannot wait to get off, why should they even bother to cruise again. We feel this was probably a better conversation left in private.

 

Finally for those keeping score, our Seapass bill was the grand figure of $74.34. This does not include the $20-$25 pp/pd we budgeted and spent in the Casino most nights. We donated quite well in our minds to the Casino enrichment fund, and had a grand time doing so. :D

 

We were touched that there was a locked plexiglass box at the purser's desk for accepting donations for the Tsunami relief.

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i went with my folks and best friend on this cruise back in 2001. although i had a good time, i was only 17. my best friend was 18. we wanted to go party at whatever it was called at the top. but i wasn't old enough, so that really sucked. over all though, i had a blast and whenever i think about it, i miss it a lot.

 

well, this year i'm going on this same cruise on sept. 25, 2005. i'm getting married the day before, so this is really exciting. we're going to be celebrating our honeymoon, but we've already reserved our cruise with 2 different last names. since we won't be married until the day before, can it be changed when we board?

Why do you want to change the name you booked under? If you are waiting until after the wedding to change your name, things won't be finalized for a couple of days. You start with your Social Security card, then change things from there (driver's license, etc.). So, you will probably still be officially under your maidan name through the honeymoon.

I got married in Jamaica - so I just traveled with my birth certificate and driver's license. I waited until after the honeymoon to get a passport with my new married name.

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Flagger,

I will be going on this ship on March 13. I was surprised to learn that they changed your ports of call twice and even then the last one was to Miami which is not the same as going to the Caymans or Costa Maya. Was the change from Grand Cayman to Costa Maya a permanent change? Do I need to plan differently for port days? I hadn't heard of any changes for our itenerary but then you didn't hear of it till at the ship. Does this sort of thing happen often?? I can only imagine how disappointing that must have been for y'all. Thanks for sharing your experiences with us!

 

foreverhis_mdh

Rhapsody of the Seas

March 13-20, 2005

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Itineraries are changed based on weather. As we all know, weather can change quickly and unexpectedly. Most ports are nto changed unless it is drastic weather conditions. Grand Cayman has been an iffy port ever since last fall's hurricane and is always questionable since it is reached by tender and the sea conditions can be too dangerous to ferry passengers.

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I too as well as my husband & our bestfriends were on this cruise. I am one who can handle the good with the bad however I'm afraid that this particular cruise didn't equal out & it went south.

 

As you have read embarkation was a nightmare. We booked with EZCruise & arrived several times to park only to be retold to come back later each time. We finally decided to go grab a bite to eat & when coming back found the line for parking was 3/4 wrapped around the block. We parked at 3:10 after waiting a hour in line. Shuttles were to full so we walked over to the port. We then waited in line until 6 pm when we finally made it to our aft cabin. While waiting in line I approached a RCCL employee about the Grand Cayman/Costa Maya port. She acted as if I was stupid & said it's been Costa Maya for quite awhile. Upon arriving to the cabin a note explained this change in port. However within 5 minutes the captain came on explaining that they were not able to refuel properly in Galveston so Costa Maya was cancelled on Thurs. & instead we would use our sea day Wed. going to Miami to refuel. I was disappointed that we would be using 2 port days in Florida but then again I was still cruising so I shrugged it off.

 

Our cabin attendent introduced herself right away & disappeared as quick as she came. We went to the Windjammer for dinner as we had first seating but missed it due to getting on the ship late. It was very good food, even the coffee was just right. We explored the ship quite abit. It was remarkable to us that 2300 passengers were on board as it seemed very desserted. We realized that many retired early from the long day.

 

Monday morning we expected our breakfast room service & finally called when it was past 30 minutes of the expected time. Apparently the ticket got "misplaced". It did arrive very speedy after calling though. We enjoyed our aft balcony on Monday. Midday our room attendent checked in & we got our first scolding from her. Apparently she didn't like that we were exploring how to get the sofa bed to pull out & we pulled the sheets out from the sofa bed on Sunday evening. They got set aside from where they "normally were" & it seemed to upset her. The egg crate we asked for did get brought promptly & was very much appreciated by our friends. She also put the water & pop from the fridge up into the shelves as we asked. We dressed for formal night & went to find our table for the first time. We were surprised when we found we were seated with tablemates when it showed a table for the 4 of us on our reservation. Also more surprising was it was tucked away in a room that held 6 other tables & was shut off from the beautiful dining room including not being able to hear the music. We did have a good time meeting & talking with the other couple at the table however my husband did change our table seating that evening out in the main dining room. The couple we were with had just experienced a terrible tragedy in their family & we didn't want them stressed to carry on small talk with others they didn't know.

 

We found 4 out of 5 shows to be worthy of seeing. We also took a backstage tour of the Melodies Theatre & they did a great job on the tour.

 

On the ports we strolled around keywest, watched the sunset & enjoyed people watching.

 

Miami we paid the $15 per person to be bussed to Bayside to shop. After looking over the stores most were the same as back home but we purchased a couple neat items. We realized that it would of been far cheaper to of taken a cab & alot less time as well. We exercised this day & I felt great afterwards. My husband & friend climbed the rock wall like they were each spiderman. The bunch running the wall were very encouraging to a woman in her 50's & despite her resistence she made it to the top. It was awesome to watch!

 

Cozumel was awesome! Our plans wereto shop first.Theshopping guide passed out vouchers for a free cab ride near Los Cinco Soles so it worked well for us. We found all souvenirs here & for $6 the 4 of us took a cab back. We ate lunch at Senor Frogs &had a great time. I really wanted to go to Paradise Beach in the afternoon, however one local said it would take 20 minutes each way. That made me nervous regarding time so we passed. I would love to know from others if that is in fact the right amount of time to get there.

 

Quest was absolutley the funniest game & we took part in it to the fullest extent possible. We didn't win but had alot of fun. The marriage show was good & so were the bands.

 

I had a few drink of the day. My first glass I had got tken by the stewardess from the cabin. I assumed that it was being washed & would be brought back. A couple days later when not replaced I left a note. It still didn't appear so my husband asked the pursers desk when paying our bill on Saturday. I got confronted later that night that I was wrong she never took a glass. I asked if she had a helper. She didn't she said. She insisted I was "wrong". I asked her to leave as it made me uncomfortable & she acted like I was lying. It really made no sense to me why she was upset with me but she acted likeshe was. My husband was not happy & talked with the pursors desk once again about the problem which now was more attitude then getting my glass replaced. They took care of the problem by giving us 2 glasses instead of one.

 

Getting a aft cabin meet our needs. It could of been cleaner, like mentioned by flagger but we did spend alot of time relaxing out there even having dinner there one evening. We also took a set of rope lights &strung them on the banister.

 

We checked in & were told there was no Meet & Mingle. I even showed them the confirmation email I received. We went back to our cabin at 5:40 after laaying in the sun all afternoon to find a invitation on the bed. They had to of delivered it late in the afternoon the same day as we had been in our room in the early afternoon. It was another disappointment.

 

Departure went smoothly for us. It seemed odd that it could run that smoothly so we hope that in the future getting ont he ship will go as well next time.

 

My husband & I did enjoy the relaxation. We've never taken a trip before that we relaxed so much but we both feel despite the weather problems that the service was less than average & down right rude at times. We had to laugh though because another steward, which we nicknamed the "Family Man" would greet us everytime we were in the hallway. He even received a tip from us because of his friendlyness. If you are on deck 7 his name is Dale, from Jamica & he's wonderful!

 

Cruise the Rhapsody again, probably not. We are not eliminating RCCL all together because of this experience. We have 4 kids ages 12-18 who would like to cruise so we will look into the Voyager class for the future.

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