There are so many varied opinions on these cruises. Why is it that some say the public bathrooms on the Ecstasy are horrid while others say they are very clean. Others say the food is great while some say it's awful. I guess everyone has different standards but it's just amazing how there can be such a huge difference in opinion on these reviews. Oh well, guess we will have to make up our own mind.
The thing about cruise reviews are they just people's opinions. You sometimes even see reviews from two people on the same sailing of the same ship with such condradictory viewpoints it's hard to believe they were on the same ship.
So many factors come into play.. attitutude, expectations, and personality to name a few.
That's why I choose to call most everything I write about our cruises "reports". I am reporting on my cruise experience on a particular ship, and there is nothing to say that yours would be the same if u sailed her.
While it's great to read other people's views, as you say, best to find out for yourself!
Sharon----Cruise reviews are about like hotel and restaurant reviews. When I was in law enforcement I would ask the same questions to different people who were witnesses at the same location at the same time. I many times got different answers. They told me what they thought they saw or what they had witnessed. Same on a cruise. I may not like broccoli and therefore give the dinner a bad rating while someone else just loves it and gives a 5 star rating. I usually toss out the worst and the best and see if I can make sense of what is remaining.
I usually use the reviews when deciding on a cruise, I think if there is 1 bad one out of every 5, I will be just fine. I feel that if you see several reviews with the same complaint then there may be a real problem. I have never taken a bad cruise, but I learned the hard way about taking an older ship (The Holiday) and not knowing what to expect. Since that cruise in 2002 I have read several reviews before I make a final decision. The reviews are a helpful tool in my opinion.
You have to remember opinions are like noses - everybody's got one.
Much of a reviewers comments depend as much on expectation as reality. The problem is when you have an older, not yet refurbished ship like the Ecstasy, is that people look at commercials and brochures and expect the latest bells and whistles ship, and when they board and realize that they've got a ship stuck in aging decor, no grand stair case with crystal chandeleirs, no waterfall swimming pool, etc. they fail to see anything positive after that.
When you start out with a negative attitude you are going to notice every little thing. Suddenly the chippped piece of tile in the bathroom becomes a filthy restroom, the so-so entree one night becomes inedible. It's sad when folks get blinded to the good things that older or smaller ships have to offer.
They certainly never seem to take into account the cost of the Ecstasy per day versus the cost of the Conquest, both of which sail from the same port.
All I can tell ya' is - different strokes for different folks I've sailed in July and it was so awful we've decided to do it again in November.
You know I love it here on Cruisemates.... everyone sure got this one right.... reviews are only reports of what one person experienced.
Last year we cruised Mexico 7 day... all the service was good or great, except this one bar I think is was aft pool...
anyway, 3 different times we tried for service and each time someone different was bartending and each time, we left the bar unhappy about the service....
Even though the service at that bar was consistantly bad, it barely got a mention in my report when we got back...
Why should I stress myself out over a couple of bad experiences when the rest of the cruise/service was so wonderful.....
One thing to remember is that the crews are constantly changing on ships. If I am not mistaken from what I have been told is that most crew contracts are for 6 months. Some leave, some switch ships and some new ones start working the ships.
We booked a cruise on the Holiday last year after we had sailed on the Valor in February and the crew told me that the Valor was rates 2nd by customers in the Carnival fleet. I asked who was number one and they said the Holiday was. So we booked a cruise for December on the Holiday and was totally shocked with the lack of service we received. I mentioned this to a crew member when we sailed the Triumph last February and that is when they told me about how the crews on ships are constantly changing. She said that if we sailed the Triumph six months from now We might get worse or better service, you just don't know.
Add this to the mix that we were expecting exceptional service after hearing that the Holiday rated so well we probably were expecting more too. We were greatly disappointed but someone who might have never cruised before or heard of the exceptional service that was supposed to be on the Holiday probably would have rated the cruise much better then we did.
All this to say that there are many reasons for the different reviews and one must take the reviews with a grain of salt.
Caribbean Princess 07
Carnival Valor Feb. 08
Carnival Holiday Dec 08
Carnival Triumph Feb 09
Island Princess coming in Nov. 2009