Just back from 12 nights on Costa Allegra. Into Miami 3oth Jan 2005
This was my first time, and sad to say last! I had to have a look for myself, as some Costa reviews on here are pretty bad.
This cruise I think could only be booked in Europe. I will list the good and bad to save a long message.
Arr at Miami, not as long to get through as I had been warned, about 20 mins.
Car to take us to the the Sheritan at Biscayne was arranged and there within 5 mins, very good.
Arr at hotel, no room set aside, got one, went up, and someone in it!
Reception, another room and $25 voucher for bar or food.
Met the Costa staff at the hotel, found out about the transfer, talked to the girls a few times. Coach came, forgot to give me a sticker for the transfer.
Arr, at the ship, check in OK and waited 3 hours for our cases.
Had a meeting with our host, only 6 English on the ship.
That makes it hard for me as I am a good mixer and like to make friends have a drink etc. The rest of the passengers could hardly speak with us. This made it a very, very long and boring cruise.
I must say that travel agents in the UK do not bother too much with Costa, and the main reason is that they can not get a phone line in to Costa office. One agent I know tried for 2 days and gave up. The result is that Costa are the last company they "try" to contact.
Theatre shows not too bad with dancers, a singer, a magic act and a flamenco show.
The entertainment team or animators as they are called did work very hard and I got to know them well.
90% of all activities were music and dance, with instruction mainly in Italian.
The cruise meals were quite good, staff fantastic.
Bar staff good, but drinks one of the most expensive I have ever seen, and I do like a drink, but not at those prices.
They do not give too much away, like 24 hour coffee that most ships have.
The ports of call were all ok. The ship did hit the quayside at Costa Rica, with a big hole that had to be repaired in Costa Rica. 15 hour delay, that cut our time at Grand Cayman. The Capt. gave us all wine with our meal the next day.
Back to Miami on time.
Off the ship and taken to shops for a few hours before our flight home.
I know security is most important, but please Miami Airport , get the check in desks organised better, and the luggage checks and the hand luggage checks. It was total madness. I would not go from a US airport again if it takes nearly 3 hours just to get to the gate.
Overall, the non English speaking aspect makes me not want to go on another. I know you might say it is an Italian line, in that case don't sell it the UK, if you are not going to cater for them.