i see a big silhouette.. new cruiser review
As a first cruise we didnt have anything to compare to, so we were keen to enjoy as much as we could. being disabled travellers this is an holiday that takes a lot of planning. Southampton port isnt that easy to find as not really signposted correctly which dock to get to, there was a lot of people luggage etc to negotiate and a great time is required to get onboard like airports but accessible none the less with care. some parts of the ship are hard to negotiate in wheelchairs and sometimes although the cabin is a good size their location is not always the best as near crew access and noisy. ports need a lot of research and as we had to miss one port due to access we were disappointed with how the celebrity dealt with a lot of disabled being basically abandoned on board with no recognition, support etc I was glad of the meet and greet opportunities, but as a first time cruiser and having a big birthday onboard didnt really feel that special on the occasion on ship other than discount vouchers for purchases. the shows were very good but the wheelchair bays had poor views. the food was generally very good and a lot of choice, and very good hygiene standards, but the onboard restaurant sales staff can be a little annoying. my partner had an accident on board due to a dangerous door, which really took away from our cruise needing treatment and rest all the time but the medical staff were very good. but no follow up was given by the cruise line afterwards given it was a serious injury. there are lessons to be learnt. being disabled excursions are mostly no go so organised our own so cant comment. the open dining was by far the best for us as we like to move tables but many dont like that arrangement. i found that the spa treatment costs were excessive and more should be free perhaps off peak low rates for thermal. That said in the main the staff were good though management felt a little unapproachable. the customer service staff were pleasant but mostly ineffective when issues brought to them. our cabin windows were dirty for almost half of cruise and the toilet sewers were a bit stinky but it was attended to fairly quickly and is a common cruise problem . There are a lot of different clubs on board but its a pity there is no disabled club on board cruise ships, as we could have shared a lot of tips to make our cruise experience a lot better. Except in the buffet restaurant we werent offered much help unless we happened to ask for something. resorts around the med are a mixed bunch, we couldnt get off at azores, due mostly to port and werent advised til we tried to get off that it wasnt possible after 2hrs queuing, and left to sort out or time and disappointment. the other resorts were pretty accessible with care independantly, except lisbon with narrow pavements a lot of cobblestones and rough pavements, and no ramps but pretty. Madeira was our favourite with the rich scent of eucalyptus. the canaries were as expected from previous holidays but we found the time to get back on board took longer than we thought and could easily have missed ship had we not left an hr plus from town to ports. All in all we are still looking into another cruise now that we are much wiser.
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