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Back from Vision of the Seas 9-20 to 9-25


Sherman793
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Well since I read avidly about this ship before I went here is my take on the good, the very good and the pretty awful. To begin, we are fairly frequent cruisers and booked this a few months ago because we could not wait for our November Allure cruise. I will be honest I was concerned about the service issues I had read since the ship came over a few months ago. The truth was somewhat of a wait occurred at every open bar on the ship all 5 days. There were pretty much no servers at the pool even on the sea days which seems to be a real miss for Royal since the hot days really beg for a nice cold beverage. But if you wanted one in under an hour...you needed to go get it on your own. The attitudes overall of the staff were very good to excellent. I did not see any issues with that in fact they were over compensating for a clear problem with being very short staffed. Not sure what has happened on this ship but Royal really needs to get that fixed since it is such a big revenue grab for them.

 

The ship is just beautiful and you would never in a million years know that it was over 25 years old. They did a fabulous job on the remodel. We had a balcony room 7544 and while a bit small compared to our prior cruises it was just fine. The shower curtain is everything all the reviews have commented on previously....stuck to your body!:eek: But whatever....it got the job done.

 

The casino paid out some really big jackpots while we were there. We saw several people win $3K plus on the slots and one very flamboyant Roulette player reportedly one $10K over the 5 days. I watched he and his family play for hours, it was great free entertainment and he certainly was winning a lot. That much? Eh,,,,, not sure but it was impressive nonetheless.

 

Speaking of entertainment, the shows were good. Not amazing but solid performances and the activities director, Steve was funny and did a super job. We enjoyed all the stuff going on all around the ship. They had all the usual shows, comedy, singing, juggling ect. The upside of a small ship is you are not fighting a ton of people to do everything. The down side is that there is obviously not as much to do. Small children were on the ship and from what I could see their activities options were pretty limited. I probably would stick with a bigger ship if you are worried about them being entertained.

 

It was a slightly older crowd but we met many interesting people just as we always do. This was our first time trying My Time Dining and we enjoyed it. With the onset next year of Dynamic Dining I can now see how this will play out. I am OK with it, I will miss some elements of having the same tablemates every night but I liked going at 7:00 to 7:30 which was our more normal time to eat dinner. The waitstaff was definitely overwhelmed just as the bar service was. None of this was the end of the world by any stretch of the imagination. This cruise was exactly what we expected and the ship was beautiful.

 

I really only have one very very negative thing to say...while it is just my opinion ( and that of nearly every table mate all week long ) the new menu was awful. The food was bland and the selection has narrowed to the point of really struggling a few nights to find something to eat that we liked. Then when we did get it there was little flavor. Selections in the Windjammer likewise have been just about cut in half of the prior years. We ended up paying for 3 trips to the specialty restaurants at the 30% discount. 2 nights in Chops and one in Giovanni's. The steaks were very plain and lacked any salt or anything seasoning related at all. The sides were excellent and the service was also excellent. We had a very nice dinner in Giovanni's as well. I hate to say it but while we certainly did not starve, I did not look forward to going to dinner nearly as much as I have on other cruises. Since I loved to sample new items on the menus this was a big disappointment and may color our cruising choices in the future. We will see how things go on the Allure before we make any decision that drastic, especially since we will be Emerald after that cruise and I hate to start all over with loyalty programs with other lines.

 

All in all I do not think I would go out of my way to sail Vision again we are probably more the Freedom class lovers but I thoroughly enjoyed our short cruise and would certainly recommend sailing on her, as long as your expectations are that you are on a smaller ship in a world of very large ships nowadays.

 

Thanks for everyone that shared their reviews with me prior to this trip!:o

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Hi,

thank you for your observations and your review.

I am just wondering if perhaps there is not enough servers and waiters after the renovation of Vision last year.

It seemed that they added new restaurants .... so additional waiters were needed there ..... where did they come from ? from the MDR ? or did they hire more and if they did - where did they put them .... there is only so much room in the crew area ..... did they add any cabins for the crew ?

So maybe they cut the number of bar servers and put the additional wait people in their cabins ...... I am just wondering what happened after the improvements during the dry dock.

 

We were on Vision two years ago and did not notice any problem with service then. Sorry to 'hear' the the food in MDR was not as good as you expected ...... perhaps that is the way 'they want us to use ( and pay for) the additional pay restaurants.

Edited by wieslaw
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Well since I read avidly about this ship before I went here is my take on the good, the very good and the pretty awful. To begin, we are fairly frequent cruisers and booked this a few months ago because we could not wait for our November Allure cruise. I will be honest I was concerned about the service issues I had read since the ship came over a few months ago. The truth was somewhat of a wait occurred at every open bar on the ship all 5 days. There were pretty much no servers at the pool even on the sea days which seems to be a real miss for Royal since the hot days really beg for a nice cold beverage. But if you wanted one in under an hour...you needed to go get it on your own. The attitudes overall of the staff were very good to excellent. I did not see any issues with that in fact they were over compensating for a clear problem with being very short staffed. Not sure what has happened on this ship but Royal really needs to get that fixed since it is such a big revenue grab for them.

 

The ship is just beautiful and you would never in a million years know that it was over 25 years old. They did a fabulous job on the remodel. We had a balcony room 7544 and while a bit small compared to our prior cruises it was just fine. The shower curtain is everything all the reviews have commented on previously....stuck to your body!:eek: But whatever....it got the job done.

 

The casino paid out some really big jackpots while we were there. We saw several people win $3K plus on the slots and one very flamboyant Roulette player reportedly one $10K over the 5 days. I watched he and his family play for hours, it was great free entertainment and he certainly was winning a lot. That much? Eh,,,,, not sure but it was impressive nonetheless.

 

Speaking of entertainment, the shows were good. Not amazing but solid performances and the activities director, Steve was funny and did a super job. We enjoyed all the stuff going on all around the ship. They had all the usual shows, comedy, singing, juggling ect. The upside of a small ship is you are not fighting a ton of people to do everything. The down side is that there is obviously not as much to do. Small children were on the ship and from what I could see their activities options were pretty limited. I probably would stick with a bigger ship if you are worried about them being entertained.

 

It was a slightly older crowd but we met many interesting people just as we always do. This was our first time trying My Time Dining and we enjoyed it. With the onset next year of Dynamic Dining I can now see how this will play out. I am OK with it, I will miss some elements of having the same tablemates every night but I liked going at 7:00 to 7:30 which was our more normal time to eat dinner. The waitstaff was definitely overwhelmed just as the bar service was. None of this was the end of the world by any stretch of the imagination. This cruise was exactly what we expected and the ship was beautiful.

 

I really only have one very very negative thing to say...while it is just my opinion ( and that of nearly every table mate all week long ) the new menu was awful. The food was bland and the selection has narrowed to the point of really struggling a few nights to find something to eat that we liked. Then when we did get it there was little flavor. Selections in the Windjammer likewise have been just about cut in half of the prior years. We ended up paying for 3 trips to the specialty restaurants at the 30% discount. 2 nights in Chops and one in Giovanni's. The steaks were very plain and lacked any salt or anything seasoning related at all. The sides were excellent and the service was also excellent. We had a very nice dinner in Giovanni's as well. I hate to say it but while we certainly did not starve, I did not look forward to going to dinner nearly as much as I have on other cruises. Since I loved to sample new items on the menus this was a big disappointment and may color our cruising choices in the future. We will see how things go on the Allure before we make any decision that drastic, especially since we will be Emerald after that cruise and I hate to start all over with loyalty programs with other lines.

 

All in all I do not think I would go out of my way to sail Vision again we are probably more the Freedom class lovers but I thoroughly enjoyed our short cruise and would certainly recommend sailing on her, as long as your expectations are that you are on a smaller ship in a world of very large ships nowadays.

 

Thanks for everyone that shared their reviews with me prior to this trip!:o

 

We were on this cruise as well. Vision is not over 25 years old by the way. she began sailing in 1998. Yes, the poolside servers are a rare breed now but there were no real waits if you went to get your own. Each will have their own opinion as to the food. I do agree that choices have been cut back but we did not find it bland at all.

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We were on this sailing and totally agree with OP about dining. We have never eaten in a specialty restaurant on 8 cruises, but did twice on this cruise. We were on Freedom in March and Enchantment in July and saw a big difference in menu selection and quality of food on this cruise-very disappointed. The Windjammer was not up to par- ate breakfast there on 2 days, and no seasoning or taste on food whatsoever. DW refused to eat in WJ after day 1.

I posted this on another thread, but we were so aggravated with the tender process at Grand Cayman. This was our 3rd time to GC with Royal. We had to stand in line at 7:45 am to get a "ticket" and then had to wait almost 2 hours for that number to be called to go ashore. They were only running one tender boat. This was supposedly done for "crowd control" but IMO only slowed the process down. It was such a pain.

Other than those 2 things we had a great cruise! Live music on this cruise was some the best we've heard on any ship. Captain is great!

 

 

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Also on this cruise and had no problems with tenders. Walked down to deck 1 and was told no ticket was needed and walked right on, this was about 9:30. Also, we saw at least two tenders running at that time. No wait on the way back also.

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We were on this sailing and totally agree with OP about dining. We have never eaten in a specialty restaurant on 8 cruises, but did twice on this cruise. We were on Freedom in March and Enchantment in July and saw a big difference in menu selection and quality of food on this cruise-very disappointed. . Captain is great!

 

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Hi,

seems that there are few posters ..... here and other threads .... that were disapointed in the dining.

That is not a good news ..... we were on Freedom in dec and we had no issues with the dining at MDR or windjammer .... there was always something that we liked and enjoyed.

Why Vision would be different ? Don't all the ships get the same food delivered to them and don't they follow the same receipes ?

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We ended up paying for 3 trips to the specialty restaurants at the 30% discount. 2 nights in Chops and one in Giovanni's.

 

 

Thanks for sharing your experience; I'm sailing Vision in a few weeks, largely due to the ports of call. Can you provide any more details on the specialty restaurant deal?

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Also on this cruise and had no problems with tenders. Walked down to deck 1 and was told no ticket was needed and walked right on, this was about 9:30. Also, we saw at least two tenders running at that time. No wait on the way back also.

 

 

That is great that you had no wait to get off the ship. That was not the case for us and several hundred other folks who stood in line at 7:45 to get a ticket and then sat in Centrum waiting for our ticket number to be called. They were only loading one tender boat at a time. I don't think we actually needed to wait because no one ever asked to see the ticket. We had no wait returning to ship. It was just an odd arrangement and a process that we have never gone through in all the times we have "tendered" :)

 

 

 

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Edited by freepeople
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