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wishful

11/20/05 cruise on mediterranea follow up

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I will not go into the trouble we had with Costa and our TA because I have posted it previously. I am going to give my comments as fairly as I can. EMBARKTATION did not go smoothly for us without the documentation. We arrived in FT Lauderdale at approx. 11:30 AM and had to search for someone to give us luggage tags. After asking many of Costa personnel we finally found the table and had to wait in line for the luggage tags and immigration forms. This was not a good thing. The line to get on the ship was extremely long and Costa did open at 1PM instead of 1:30. This was a good thing. When we entered the terminal we were informed we could not go to the regular lines because we did not have any docs. so we were sent to the "CUSTOMER SERVICE" line and waited 1 1/2 hours. We watched people with docs going through there lines quickly but they had many people waiting on them we had one person for about 100 people. When we almost there the COMPUTER BROKE DOWN. Did I mention the building was not air conditioned. This was not a good thing. We arrived at our stateroom just around the same time our luggage did. This was a good thing. The stateroom we had was #5155 a balcony with an obstructed view, we were told that the obstruction would be a life boat under the balcony this was not quite true. The life boat was even with the balcony and one had to stand up to see the water. We did believe what we were told. That was a mistake. The room was very nice and very clean although the bed was like a board but we did sleep well. We did ask for 2 more pillows & our cabin stewart, Ronnie, brought them to us without any trouble. That was a good thing. This was the first time we took a cruise where the life boat drill was not held on the first day but was held on the second after the ship left Key West. Not a good thing. Costa also does not swipe your credit card at embarktation but you are suppose to get it done sometime during the cruise. So once more we waited in line to get this done on the first day but the computers were down once more. We tried again on the second day and handed "CUSTOMER SERVICE" my discover card and was informed that they did not accept discover athough they did when I ordered wine on the intenet. It was very fortunate that we had other credit cards with us. When "CUSTOMER SERVICE" went to swipe the card (you guessed it) computers were down. So it was another day & another wait in line. This was not a good thing. Second day of cruise was Key West and we docked at the Navy Yard. We took this cruise with 2 friends and three of us made it off the ship at Key West. Our friend (the 4th person) was told she had a counterfeit card & could not get off the ship. She was held by security and taken to (guess where) "CUSTOMER SERVICE" to get it straighted out and to get new ship card. But of course the computer system was down again. A half hour later our friend finally got a new card and joined us on the pier. When our friends husband tried his ship card to get into their room (guess what) it didn't work & back to "CUSTOMER SERVICE". This was not a good thing. In fact this was quite embarassing.

At Key West we docked at the Navy Base and Costa rented the Conch Trams to take us into town because of the security on the base no one was permitted to walk through the base into town. This was a good thing. At Cozumel were water taxied into the center of town. This was a good thing.

ENTERTAINMENT--- The shows in the theatre are all done with "canned" music and I do enjoy a good band or orchestra. One of the shows had a laser display which I found enjoyable. On the whole I found the shows to be mediocre.

The best shows were held in the lounges after the theatre shows. The staff used audience participatation and they were helarious. This was a good thing. One of the passengers that became pizza man at one of the shows tried to get some of the pictures and video that the ship photographer took. But no one seemed to know where they were but this was typical of the service that you received.

FOOD ---- The presentation of the food was good the food was another story. The pasta on deck 9 was fresh & cooked while you waited. That was a good thing. The dining room food was passable. I was never asked how I would like my steak cooked. Sometimes the table was not set with all the utensils or condiments. The desserts were also boring. This was not a good thing.

We were told the ship had just came across the Atlantic and picked up a new crew in Nassau & FT Lauderdale. This is probably why half of the crew did not know what they were doing and why two of the stores were closed on the first night. This cruise needed better organization and "Customer Service" both on the ship and off the ship need to be trained and better informed. Their seems to be two different computer systems & one does not communicate with the other. This is not a good thing.

If the four of us were to rate COSTA on a scale of 1 to 10 it would be a 4.

I know this was a long review & I could have went on with more incidences but I feel this is enough.

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No doc's, your TAs fault.

 

Have to agree with you on embarktation and we were in a suite. Suite and handicap were on the same line.

 

Obstructed view, is an obstructed view, your TA should have known this, but you were lucky, we once had obstructed view and the lifeboat was right in our face.

 

Life boat drill was second day because first stop was still in US.

They are allowed to do this 1st or 2nd day. No big deal, why did you find it to be a problem?

 

I thought food was not good also in the dining room.

Food in the Mudusa rest. was great.

 

We did our CC on the last day, not a problem.

 

Thought service was the best out of all our cruises. Ship was wonderful

 

We cruised in April.

 

Seems you started out on the wrong foot thanks to the problems with your TA.

By the way your TA posted here and it would seem to me he/she didn't do a very good job. Go read her/his post.

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Thank you for your frankness. I know it was hard for you to say anything positive.

 

I thought you had received your documents a couple of days before you left.

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Just a little up-date of cruise documents. We are going on a Celebrity cruise Dec. 24, 2005 and booked with a TA. Our docs were here waiting in the mail ONE MONTH before the cruise. The docs were mailed out by Celebrity on the request of the TA. Why couldn't Costa do the same thing. The only thing we received from Costa was an e-doc which was never asked for. What was needed in the docs were the luggage tags and the immigration registration. Yes I have to agree that the ship was beautiful but that does not make up for the lack of "Customer Service." Food is a individual liking or disliking. We had over 400 children on this cruise & knew, because it was an American holiday, their would probably be a lot of families. At each elevator was a sign "Children under the age of 12 must be with an adult on the elevators." That was one of the rules that was never followed. Kids were running wild all over the ship even at the "Adult" pool and hot tub. Rolling all over the dance floor when people were trying to dance. Running down the halls at all hours of the day & night. I know that is the responsibility of the parents but the Cruise line also has to take some of that responsibility when rules are posted and not followed. On our upcoming cruise for the Christmas holidays there will again be a lot of children I'll let you know how Celebrity handles the situation. To "Rocktheboat" How can someone who cruised in April know what the cruise was like in November. Maybe they were all together in April for your cruise but they sure were not in November for our cruise. I repeat Costa needs a revamping of their "Customer Service" had better organization on their ship.

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wishful,,, was your Costa cruise booked with the same travel agent as your Celebrity Cruise...?

 

also there was another review from someone on the same week as you and they obviously had a better experience with service and food, altho they agreed with you there was some disorganization.. hopefully they will have those kinks worked out next week :)

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There has been a lot said, on these threads, about extra pillows, chocolate on your pillow at night time, towel animals, and other such nicety such as mints after dinner on your way out of the dining room. Another nicety at dinner is when the wait staff put the napkin on your lap and cleans the crumbs off your table before serving dessert. Tea is served in the dining room with nice white table cloths where the wait staff wears white gloves serving tea sandwiches, cakes & cookies. In your bathroom are cotton tips, cotton balls, shampoo & body lotions. On formal nights everyone, using the dining room, is dressed nicely not t-shirts and jeans.

This what makes the difference between an elegant cruise and a McDonalds cruise. This is how the cruises were, and some still are, before they dropped to the fast food standard.

I though Costa, being an European cruise line, would be more on the elegant side but I was wrong.

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