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Old December 15th, 2009, 06:10 PM
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Default MSC or Costa - which is better for Americans?

Both of these cruise lines are basically European cruise lines that offer Caribbean cruises to Americans but also still cater to their European audience by making all announcements in 5 languages and having many different cultures onboard at the same time.

If you have taken both - please vote for which one you think does a better job in the Caribbean for Americans.

If you have only done one - please post your impressions of what you thought of your cruise below:

Thank you!
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Old December 15th, 2009, 06:54 PM
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I gave a full reply on this in the Costa section. But my reply was telling about the good of MSC. Here is the link to it:

Costa or MSC - which is better for Americans?
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Old December 27th, 2009, 08:01 AM
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I liked Costa better.

On MSC, among other things that I have had issues with: getting a cup of coffee was not possible unless it was meal time and you were willing to wait as much as 45 minutes in the restaurant or you paid for it at the bar. On the positive side: the entertainment was truly excellent.
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Old December 29th, 2009, 05:16 AM
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Just returned from the Poesia. I was able to get coffee in the buffet 24/7. One thing tho - the coffee is STRONG so be prepared.
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Old December 29th, 2009, 11:28 AM
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And if you want espresso or another European coffee, you can get it at any bar at any time - because its a European cruise ship (there is a charge for special coffees, though).
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Old January 9th, 2010, 05:17 PM
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Wink Msc Poesia and smoking

Can anyone tell me if I will be inundated by smoking on this ship? On Celebrity, NCL and Princess, smoking was only allowed on Port side or in an occassional lounge. However, I just got off Royal Carib navigator of the Seas and I was smoked out everywhere--Promenade deck--several lounges--poolside bars--It was terrible and I will never take RC again until that policy changes.

Now I am worried that MSC will be worse--I actually get sick from the smell--A friend wants to try MSC out of Fort lauderdale and I would prefer to spend a little more on Princess or Celebrity--We are seniors--but not dead yet and hoping for another 20 or 30 smoke free years.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 06:35 PM
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You can be pretty sure they are more tolerant of smokers, and if there are a lot of Europeans on board they do smoke a lot more than Americans. if you are concerned I would do what you said - try an American line.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 06:58 PM
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The smoking policy on MSC is very much like Celebrity, NCL and Princess. There is only one lounge that allows smoking but of course the casino is smoking. We found that on the Lirica it was not bad walking past the casino.
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Star Princess 2005, Sun Princess 2005
Caribbean Princess 2006, MSC Lirica 2006 , NCL Pearl 2007, Majesty of the Seas 2008, Carnival Destiny 2008, MSC Lirica 2009, Carnival Valor 2009,Carnival Legend 2010, Carnival Liberty 2010,Carnival Fantsay 2011,Carnival Valor Feb 2012, MSC Poesia Dec 2012, MSC Poesia April 2013, Carnival Legend Nov 2013, MSC DIVINA Jan 2014
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Old January 10th, 2010, 12:55 PM
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Thanks for your input NLB. In Europe I know the smoking policies are very liberal, and you would tend to smell it all over the ship.

It gives me an idea - best ships for smokers.
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Old January 10th, 2010, 01:04 PM
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Paul, I have found that MSC does have some different rules when in the Caribbean. Changes were made after the first season when they got feedback from those cruises and all the Americans that they never had in the Med.
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Star Princess 2005, Sun Princess 2005
Caribbean Princess 2006, MSC Lirica 2006 , NCL Pearl 2007, Majesty of the Seas 2008, Carnival Destiny 2008, MSC Lirica 2009, Carnival Valor 2009,Carnival Legend 2010, Carnival Liberty 2010,Carnival Fantsay 2011,Carnival Valor Feb 2012, MSC Poesia Dec 2012, MSC Poesia April 2013, Carnival Legend Nov 2013, MSC DIVINA Jan 2014
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Old January 12th, 2010, 06:29 PM
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Do you know what rules are different in America for MSC?
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Old January 12th, 2010, 07:13 PM
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Mainly the smoking policy is stricter in theCaribbean. Another difference is the auto tips amount is different. In the Caribbean it is $12 pp per day.
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Star Princess 2005, Sun Princess 2005
Caribbean Princess 2006, MSC Lirica 2006 , NCL Pearl 2007, Majesty of the Seas 2008, Carnival Destiny 2008, MSC Lirica 2009, Carnival Valor 2009,Carnival Legend 2010, Carnival Liberty 2010,Carnival Fantsay 2011,Carnival Valor Feb 2012, MSC Poesia Dec 2012, MSC Poesia April 2013, Carnival Legend Nov 2013, MSC DIVINA Jan 2014
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Old January 13th, 2010, 10:41 AM
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So, is the tipping higher in the Caribbean than in Europe? I also read they actually charge for room service in Europe. How was the room service in the Caribbean on MSC?
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Old January 13th, 2010, 12:32 PM
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We have never used the room service but some on our last cruise last April did and had no complaints.
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Star Princess 2005, Sun Princess 2005
Caribbean Princess 2006, MSC Lirica 2006 , NCL Pearl 2007, Majesty of the Seas 2008, Carnival Destiny 2008, MSC Lirica 2009, Carnival Valor 2009,Carnival Legend 2010, Carnival Liberty 2010,Carnival Fantsay 2011,Carnival Valor Feb 2012, MSC Poesia Dec 2012, MSC Poesia April 2013, Carnival Legend Nov 2013, MSC DIVINA Jan 2014
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Old February 22nd, 2010, 11:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by valtime View Post
Just returned from the Poesia. I was able to get coffee in the buffet 24/7. One thing tho - the coffee is STRONG so be prepared.

Thanks. The above poster had me worried. I would not book a cruise if I could not get morning coffee! I love strong coffee! I will have to check MSC out.
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Old February 24th, 2010, 05:03 PM
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On MSC Splendida in the Med - Room Service is free for Breakfast (continental). Coffee/tea is only free at breakfast and tea time.
The main difference between Europe and America is that in Europe the buffet is only open for breakfast, lunch and tea while in America it's open all day. Plus in Europe water isn't free.
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Old February 25th, 2010, 09:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hat776 View Post
On MSC Splendida in the Med - Room Service is free for Breakfast (continental). Coffee/tea is only free at breakfast and tea time.
The main difference between Europe and America is that in Europe the buffet is only open for breakfast, lunch and tea while in America it's open all day. Plus in Europe water isn't free.

I know you have to pay for water in Europe-but even on ship? Even if in the Caribbean? I was looking at a MSC cruise to San Juan, St. Marten, and Tortola.
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Old February 25th, 2010, 11:23 AM
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momofmeg, in the Caribbean they do serve tap water but of course for bottled water there is a charge, it seems that the Europeans do not like the taste of the tap water so it is not readily available in Europe.

We found that the the tap water was just fine, really no different than on other ships.

At meals if you want water they will try to get you to buy bottled but no problem with just requesting tap.
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Star Princess 2005, Sun Princess 2005
Caribbean Princess 2006, MSC Lirica 2006 , NCL Pearl 2007, Majesty of the Seas 2008, Carnival Destiny 2008, MSC Lirica 2009, Carnival Valor 2009,Carnival Legend 2010, Carnival Liberty 2010,Carnival Fantsay 2011,Carnival Valor Feb 2012, MSC Poesia Dec 2012, MSC Poesia April 2013, Carnival Legend Nov 2013, MSC DIVINA Jan 2014
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Old February 25th, 2010, 11:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nlb1050 View Post
momofmeg, in the Caribbean they do serve tap water but of course for bottled water there is a charge, it seems that the Europeans do not like the taste of the tap water so it is not readily available in Europe.

We found that the the tap water was just fine, really no different than on other ships.

At meals if you want water they will try to get you to buy bottled but no problem with just requesting tap.
Yes, I have been to Europe. Water was expensive too. You could get a glass of wine about as cheap. You alse had to say "no gas," or else you got mineral water. We found a grocery store near our hotel in Paris that sold a 6 pack, of 1 liter bottles of water for 3 euros. The grocery store also had canned iced tea. We bought quite a bit of drinking stuff there for drinking. We would usually just order either coffee or wine with our meals.


All the lines charge for bottled water. It seems the most I would miss, is grabbing a cup of coffee in the lido area. I would probably end up buying more specialty coffees. I did that a lot also in Europe. If MSC has the good European coffee I won't mind.
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