Royal Caribbean cruise experience

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Jul 24, 2019
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#1
Hello.I would like to share my email to Royal Caribbean CEO and response that I received in 3 days.
Unfortunately I can't attach files in the forum to show bathroom picture.

My email to CEO:
Dear Sir or Madam. I hope this email finds you well.
I would like to share my experience with you during my cruise on Jewel on the Sea from October 30, 2019 - November 11, 2019. I sent my review to customer service as well but not sure if someone will pay attention to my issues and suggestion , because i didn't get any help from customer service on the ship.
I hope my review can help to improve service and condition on the ship.
This was our 10 cruise and first on Royal Caribbean where we decided to celebrate our Anniversary with my Husband. First we booked ocean view room and after paid $550 for upgrade to balcony room 8558.The ship is old and showing it’s age. A lot of rust and over painting to disguise age.
1.Room issues.
The cabin 8558 room looks old and needs update.
The frame on the mirror in the bathroom was cracked. The vanity shelves was completely destroyed with big hols and swollen paint.
I am disable person and allergic to the mold and i know it situation with swollen paint usually mold present under the paint. I immediately reported this issue to customer service.At the end of the day I received a phone call from housekeeping department and I was informed that because my bathroom has a left side vanity shelf they cant help me . As of now they have only the right side shelf in stock.
Please see attached vanity pictures. Next day i talked to customer service and ask if some one can help me with this issue , at lease to check if it is mold under the paint. Lady from housekeeping department came and sad that she cant help us.
There was a sewage smell from the drainage system in this cabin.
2. My husband was bitten by some bug ( all around his legs)in the room ( it looks like flea bites). He is a cancer survivor and is very sensitive to any rush on his skin. We immediately went to the doctor and doctor was not sure what it was exactly. I ask our Cabin Attendants to call somebody and check our room. By the end of the day I got phone call from Housekeeping department and they said that they didn't find anything .I asked to provide me printed report because i also got couple of bites . Housekeeping department refuse to provide me report.
3. The Windjammer Buffet Food.I am a vegetarian and for me was not easy to find food in the buffet. Usually on other cruise line under each food/meal you can see the list of ingredients and if it is good for vegetarian or other diet restriction. In my situation i need to call the chef and she need to call another chef to ask if meal for vegetarians or not. Unfortunately kitchen stuff was not educated about different diets. One time vegetable soup was made from chicken broth and person who works in the kitchen sad to me that is good for vegetarians.The same situation for sugar free dessert . I took 3 samples of the same dessert : one was regular, another was sugar free and another was gluten and sugar free. They all were the same . My husband is a diabetic as many people on the ship, his blood sugar went up after he tried sugar free dessert.
Some of the hallways and place near the food station close to kitchen had a old/unpleasant smell. I think somebody needs to pay more attention for food provided in the buffet.

We have done at least 10 cruises with different companies. Never had that problem before. I would love to have a second chance to take a cruise with Royal Caribbean. In fact RC has great employees on this ship.We have great Cabin Stuart Charles , he was courteous and nice and always looking to help out.
Thanks for reading my review.
If you have any questions or need more information , you can contact me via email or on my cell:
Sincerely,
Angelika

Response :
Hello Anzhelika,
Thank you for contacting the Executive Office of Royal Caribbean International. On behalf of Mr. Bayley, President & CEO, I am pleased to respond to your email.

We appreciate you taking the time to provide us your feedback on the condition of Jewel of the Seas and your stateroom. The photos you have provided are exactly some of the few things we will be working on during our re-amplification process of the ship. The ship is scheduled to go into drydock in April of 2021 if everything goes as planned. By the end of 2021, Jewel of the Seas will be almost a brand new ship with plenty of new venues and activities. I have forwarded over your photos and feedback to our operational team so they can review it further.

We recognize dining is a big part of your vacation and we are sorry we didn't meet your expectations. I also believe that our staff should be trained more to be able to identify night in and night out the vegetarian options we have available to our guests. We regularly review our guests' suggestions and feedback for ways to continue improving our customer service and future menu changes. Thank you so much for taking the time to provide us your comments as I have already forwarded them to our dining team for further action.

I am sorry to hear about the reaction your husband had due to an insect bite. We are happy that you acted quickly and swiftly by taking him to our medical facility to get checked out. After doing an extensive search of your stateroom, we were unable to find any insects. Unfortunately, we are unable to provide any reports as that is for internal purposes only. Whenever you choose to sail with us again, I would be more than happy to place some special amenities in your stateroom to begin your next sailing on the right foot.

Anzhelika, thank you so much for taking the time to contact us. We look forward to welcoming you back onboard in the near future!

Sincerely,
Javier Perdomo
Royal Guest Experience Management
Executive Team
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
20,745
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113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#4
You can use our company contacts and go further up the executive chain. You didn’t ask for anything- you only provided a review. If you want a credit- ask.

https://www.elliott.org/company-contacts/royal-caribbean/

Start with Aurora Yera–Rodriguez, since you already wrote to the first and tell her what you want instead of letting them guess.

Don’t add attachments because it might cause your email to go to spam. If they want pictures you can send them after.

If she says no, or doesn’t respond within a week, move to the next executive. Repeat weekly until you get all the way to the top.
 
Jun 24, 2019
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#6
My experience with Royal Caribbean is that you must be persistent and keep pursuing an issue. It may take time before you finally find someone who cares. You must also have in mind what you will accept. My best guess is that the folks you deal with will have the authority to issue a future cruise credit of $150-$300 per person. Note that Royal Caribbean is fussier than most on the combinability of a credit, whether an FCC or an OBC, with other credits (such as perks including free tips, internet, OBC, and liquor packages; and military discounts and/or shareholder's credit), so that the value of getting an FCC may in the end not be worth it. (One RCCL executive told me that the subject of credits and combinability on RCCL was "bewildering." I simply noted that having bewildering policies was RCCL's choice.)

Our children and grandchildren are vegetarians. When we have gone of cruises with them, the amount of information (or disinformation) about whether a food is vegetarian varies widely. On one cruise (on Princess) the Caesar salad is marked with a "V." After ordering it several times, a server at lunch, when advised that most of our group are vegetarians, advised that the Caesar dressing is made with anchovies. My D-I-L threw a fit, and the head chef came out, to report that in his country anchovies are considered vegetarian. (I doubt that is true, and even if it is, we weren't in his country, and we were talking about a cruise line-wide menu.) Princess still designates the salad and dressing as vegetarian.
 
Feb 3, 2019
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#7
RCCL wrote to you:
Whenever you choose to sail with us again, I would be more than happy to place some special amenities in your stateroom to begin your next sailing on the right foot.
I have to say, I appreciated the tone of the correspondence from RCCL. I realize the offer of unspecified "special amenities" may not sound like much, but considering the incoming correspondence didn't include a specific request for any particular remedy, and the cruise is already over, I think the fact that they volunteered something is a positive sign.

My suggestion, from a purely customer-care standpoint (I'm not a cruise person myself), is to follow up with an email in a tone similar to RCCL's. They've already acknowledged the ship needs a refresh, so if you're truly just disappointed you had a bad set of circumstances on a ship that's past its prime, say so explicitly. It sounds like you're experienced cruise travelers who were excited to try a new line, and based on the reasons you booked with them in the first place and the positive aspects of your trip, you would be willing to give RCCL another shot on a different ship - and maybe even this one after the retrofit.

If that's the case, it is in fact in RCCL's interests to offer you some credit for a future sailing - because that would mean you'll have to spend new money to use it anyway. Make a polite and reasonable request for specific benefits on a future cruise, and see what happens!
 
Likes: Skippy
Jun 24, 2019
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#8
RCCL wrote to you:

I have to say, I appreciated the tone of the correspondence from RCCL. I realize the offer of unspecified "special amenities" may not sound like much, but considering the incoming correspondence didn't include a specific request for any particular remedy, and the cruise is already over, I think the fact that they volunteered something is a positive sign.

My suggestion, from a purely customer-care standpoint (I'm not a cruise person myself), is to follow up with an email in a tone similar to RCCL's. They've already acknowledged the ship needs a refresh, so if you're truly just disappointed you had a bad set of circumstances on a ship that's past its prime, say so explicitly. It sounds like you're experienced cruise travelers who were excited to try a new line, and based on the reasons you booked with them in the first place and the positive aspects of your trip, you would be willing to give RCCL another shot on a different ship - and maybe even this one after the retrofit.

If that's the case, it is in fact in RCCL's interests to offer you some credit for a future sailing - because that would mean you'll have to spend new money to use it anyway. Make a polite and reasonable request for specific benefits on a future cruise, and see what happens!

"Special amenities in your stateroom" is a code for one or more of flowers, a bottle of wine/champagne, chocolate covered strawberries, appetizers, etc.
 
Jun 13, 2019
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#9
When writing back I would leave off the point of blood sugar going up after eating a sugar-free dessert. I, like most of my family, am diabetic. Blood sugar goes up based on everything consumed at a meal and not just dessert. I am just back from a cruise where I ate dessert once, yet my blood sugar was up daily. I gave up my one glass of wine with my evening meal and had all sauce served on the side and my blood sugar promptly returned to normal range. Focusing on the vegetarian meals would have more impact that talking about the impact of one dessert on blood sugar as other items consumed that day probably contributed to it as well.
 
Dec 27, 2014
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NoVA
#10
I need some advice. I think we deserve some credit for a future cruise .
I don't think a whole new cruise is realistic based on your couple of inconveniences. RC did offer extra amenities in a future cruise, which I think is reasonable and inline with standard practices for most cruise lines. You were still able to complete the entire cruise, eat at every meal, albeit modified, and hit all your ports. That's what you paid for.

It's interesting that you had issues finding food. For all the cruises I've been on, we've simply notified them ahead of time of dietary needs when we purchased the cruise and we were always taken care of. We were never left to fend for ourselves on the buffet, as you indicated.

At least now you have learned to research the age and condition of the ship prior to making future reservations.
 
Oct 18, 2018
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#11
This will not be politically correct. I believe it is possible to so narrow your range of acceptable situations to the point that you will not be satisfied with any available public accommodations. While an "allergy to mold" describes a vague condition, there was no mention of any allergic response to the swollen paint. There are no magic foods for diabetics - it is completely your husband's responsibility to keep track of what he is eating and its effect on his blood sugar - isn't that why he is monitoring it? Being a vegetarian is a voluntary and arbitrary condition, if you intend to travel, some flexibility may be necessary. I suspect your body will forgive you if you are victimized by chicken broth in a dish. It appears that you may have chosen to see the glass half empty rather than half full. Cruises should best be avoided by those with above average sensibilities and expectations.
 
Jun 27, 2017
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#12
We really wish cruise ships, along with the entire food industry, would STOP using the words "Sugar-Free". Many food products may be "Sugar-Free", but NOT FREE of other ingredients that can raise blood glucose. These include Sucrose, Dextrose, Fructose, Maltose and others. Diabetics are often advised to count carbohydrates in their food choices and if necessary, take medications such as insulin to help their bodies digest and use carbs efficiently. Buffets are often challenging because the ingredients in many foods are often unknown - particularly sauces, gravies, and deserts. The BEST course of action for any diabetic is to test their blood glucose before a meal, and sometimes after to determine if their glucose is going high or low and to act accordingly based on results.
 
Jun 27, 2017
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#14
That's so true, Neil. At home, we weigh, we measure and we count carbs for the foods we eat. Much harder to do when dining out. And trying to guess portion sizes is very difficult. And yes, they are usually much more than we eat at home - especially the 'round the clock food availability offered on most ships.
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
8,949
9,564
113
San Francisco
#15
This will not be politically correct. I believe it is possible to so narrow your range of acceptable situations to the point that you will not be satisfied with any available public accommodations. While an "allergy to mold" describes a vague condition, there was no mention of any allergic response to the swollen paint. There are no magic foods for diabetics - it is completely your husband's responsibility to keep track of what he is eating and its effect on his blood sugar - isn't that why he is monitoring it? Being a vegetarian is a voluntary and arbitrary condition, if you intend to travel, some flexibility may be necessary. I suspect your body will forgive you if you are victimized by chicken broth in a dish. It appears that you may have chosen to see the glass half empty rather than half full. Cruises should best be avoided by those with above average sensibilities and expectations.
Very well said, Ron. I have deep empathy for people with special nutrition needs, not that I know anything about it, but it must be so annoying to always be worrying about exactly what you're going to eat. I've never understood people who chose to not eat certain foods ... life must be weird, if not just plain difficult. I cannot see why someone with narrow eating habits (no matter what the reason) wants to take a cruise, where so much emphasis is on the meals. And the pax has so little control over what's offered.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
20,745
20,324
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#17
Very well said, Ron. I have deep empathy for people with special nutrition needs, not that I know anything about it, but it must be so annoying to always be worrying about exactly what you're going to eat. I've never understood people who chose to not eat certain foods ... life must be weird, if not just plain difficult. I cannot see why someone with narrow eating habits (no matter what the reason) wants to take a cruise, where so much emphasis is on the meals. And the pax has so little control over what's offered.
There are plenty of options on a cruise ship. We were just on a cruise that had a “seafood extravaganza” during lunch. My wife hates seafood and there was lobster and crab legs everywhere in the buffet. We were at the point we thought we’d have to go to another restaurant when she found lamb chops in the area where Indian food was cooked. It was the only thing besides the salad bar that didn’t have seafood- but she looked for it and found it.

The main dining rooms also all have a vegan option fir meals. Sometimes you just need to look a little bit.
 

Barry Graham

Administrator
Staff Member
Director
Jan 7, 2015
1,219
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#18
I wholeheartedly agree that it is the passenger — not the cruise line or anyone else — who is responsible for what the passenger chooses to consume on the ship. If the passenger is unsure of the ingredients of any given food option, the solution is simple: Ask. If in doubt, pass.
If the passenger has a special diet and none of the food is labeled in a way to help then identify what they can eat, then that means they can't eat anything. The cruise line is responsible for making it possible for people to know whether it's OK to consume the food they provide.
 

Barry Graham

Administrator
Staff Member
Director
Jan 7, 2015
1,219
1,090
113
#19
Very well said, Ron. I have deep empathy for people with special nutrition needs, not that I know anything about it, but it must be so annoying to always be worrying about exactly what you're going to eat. I've never understood people who chose to not eat certain foods ... life must be weird, if not just plain difficult. I cannot see why someone with narrow eating habits (no matter what the reason) wants to take a cruise, where so much emphasis is on the meals. And the pax has so little control over what's offered.
Some of us choose not to eat certain foods because we were commanded not to. It's not annoying, it's actually very fulfilling. And although I haven't (yet) plenty of people like me have done so and have been able to eat special food on cruises.
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
8,949
9,564
113
San Francisco
#20
Some of us choose not to eat certain foods because we were commanded not to. It's not annoying, it's actually very fulfilling. And although I haven't (yet) plenty of people like me have done so and have been able to eat special food on cruises.
OK, Barry, you got me. What are you saying?