Consumer Reviews and Complaints
The first thing that caught our attention was the service. Every aspect of the service was extraordinary. We have been on many cruises (coming up on our 20th), even some on the better cruise lines and to date the service on Oceania has been unmatched and by a large margin. This was for the June 25th, 2017 sailing of the Nautica.
The service was so anticipatory that there were virtually no things we had to ask for after the first couple of days. In fact to further exemplify the point, the service was so good that we are not sure that even Oceania will be able to deliver that level of service again. However we look forward to the future when we can make that determination. Often on cruise lines, we note a drop off in service from the main Dining Room to the buffet, but not on Oceania. In fact, it is remarkable to us that most of the wait staff and even some of the culinary staff took the initiative to find out who we were and then called us by our names for the remainder of the cruise. Impressive when you consider there were 500 or so customers on board.
We want to share one other thing. On many cruise ships it is easy to discern who are the managers and who are the waiters and busboys but the service on Nautica was so integrated that it was hard to tell the difference. For example on other cruise ships there were certain things that managers would and would not do. For example if looked like we needed something, a manager would come over and then personally satisfy the request rather than send someone else to do it. Lead by Example Service Delivery works both for the customer and the organization. We noticed this for the service delivered to us and others.
The food was good in the buffet, but it was better in the Dining Room and in the Specialty restaurants. This is not unexpected and was consistent with other lines we have traveled on. In fact, the food in the Main Dining Room was superior to all other lines we have traveled on (as you would rightly claim). There were probably a few dishes that we wished would have shown up on the menu but what was offered was excellent.
The quantity and flavoring of the food was outstanding. So was the temperature. Often the plates were too hot to even touch but this keeps the food hotter for a much longer period of time. The same occurred in the buffet where we often had to be given a napkin to handle the plates if the server determined they were necessary. The Gala Tea ceremony was excellent in every way and the hard work of the culinary and waitstaffs was evident. We really appreciated the effort and enjoyed the results of their labors. Not only was it beautiful, but the quality of the food was in a word, excellent.
We note to you however that it is almost unfair to recognize the crew members we did because the service was so outstanding from the most experienced to the least experienced. However we tried to identify those that we believe went above and beyond the call of duty. For those team members we did not formally recognize in this letter, the service was still outstanding from them; truly outstanding. Having been involved with quality in organizations in our professional life, we recognize that it is indeed a rare organization that can deliver consistent service from the least experienced to the most experienced individuals.
I've just finished reading the other reviews and am sorry that other people had horrible experiences. It led me to want to present the other side. Five years ago we took our first Oceania cruise and have been with them yearly ever since. Fortunately we've experienced only minor weather changing destination/times and none of the illness others experienced. But then again, we've been on other cruises lines, eaten mediocre (at best) food, treated like herded cattle, and not felt like a guest. On Oceania, you feel like a treasured guest. It's a joy to be onboard. The captains have always been outstanding and the staff highly concerned about food safety. You'll never scoop your own food at a buffet, for example.
We prefer the size of the ships and the locations we can get to, the crew to passenger ratio, and the casual dining. The specialty restaurants are delightful, love, love, and no extra charges. Ice cream included. Barista included. Great spa. (On another cruise line, I swear I saw the person who gave me a massage dancing in the evening show and neither were her forte...) But our truest allegiance came last year when we got a horrible middle of the night phone call regarding a car accident of a loved one. We were in shock and grief. We called the front desk to find out about docking so we could get flights and they were not responsive but from the minute our butler found out what was going on, he took charge, notified the captain who made sure we got to port hours earlier than planned and brought us coffee.
Our butler, with a team of butlers, escorted us, each rolling one of our bags, from our room to the tender and from there stood in the tropical sun, dressed in full formal attire with us to wait for our next boat to the airport. Here's an example of the level of formal comforting casualness of Oceania: While the butlers were in their full formal attire, professional at all levels, one of them knew that I love a certain candy on the ship and so he put handfuls of them in my bag along with water. Upon arrival at the airport, there was someone there to make sure we were able to get on the ship. We got home in time to say goodbye at the hospital and be with our family.
The next week, I got a phone call from a dear kind crew member who was inquiring as they were thinking of us. He was calling on his own time and a year later it still brings me to tears. Is Oceania perfect? No. Are any of us? No. Is the weather? No. But I will tell you that they came really close. And while not every person that works onboard is going to be ideal, and we've experience a few, most of them, a very high percentage of them, go so far above and beyond. Way beyond. So don't be scared away. If you haven't been on one of their cruises, go. It's a real treat.
My wife and I booked a cruise through American Express Platinum Travel Services. The Oceania cruise started from New York City on October 18, 2016 for ten days going to Martha's Vineyard, Boston, Bar Harbor, and Halifax, Nova Scotia. Each port was to be for one night. Then the ship was scheduled to go to Bermuda, spending a little more than two days at sea, a day and a half in Bermuda and approximately two days at sea on returning to New York City on October 28, 2016.
We made each scheduled port through Halifax, Nova Scotia. At that point the captain said the weather conditions made it too dangerous to proceed to Bermuda. I fully understand that the safety of the passengers, crew and the ship made it impossible to proceed to Bermuda. However, five and one half days of a ten day trip, in excess of 50%, was to be going to, staying, and returning from Bermuda. The remedy of the captain and Oceania Cruise Lines was to instead, spend an additional day in Halifax, then one full day at sea in order to use up time. Then one day in Portland, Maine, another day at sea to use up more time and then one day in Newport, Rhode Island. These substituted ports were in cold rough seas. Additionally, we were offered a $250 per person credit on a future cruise. I find this remedy to be both inappropriate and offensive.
While the captain knew the condition en route to Bermuda was dangerous, he also had to know that the weather conditions in the North Atlantic Ocean off the coast of New England would be difficult and uncomfortable as well. In fact there was an announcement while we were in Newport, R.I. for everyone to be careful while walking and to hold on to the handrails as the seas were quite rough. The ship should have proceeded to New York City directly from Halifax, Nova Scotia and Oceania Cruise Lines should have provided refunds to the passengers. My cost for this cruise was in excess of $5,800 per person. I feel a substantial monetary refund is in order.
I admit the food and service on board the ship was outstanding but because more than 50% of the trip's itinerary was substituted and those two days at sea were a complete waste of time, rendering some of the ships amenities useless. Since we stayed in cold and stormy weather, the swimming pool and hot tub could not be utilized. On the next to last night on board at the show the Captain admitted that this had been a very difficult cruise. When does the cruise line take responsibility for not having a better alternate plan? The offering of a nominal credit on a future cruise is truly insulting. If I had purchased a suit and it turned out to be made of defective material, a pair of jeans and a 5% credit the next time I purchased another suit would be just as ludicrous.
My travel agent pushed Oceania Cruise lines so I booked a cruise a year in advance to take advantage of their (so called) "early booking" discount, which was show to be 1/2 of their normal charge. We were promised, also, free gratuities and six shore excursions for each my husband and myself. As they were booking our airfare, we told them we wanted to get to the first port two days early to enable us to take a comprehensive tour. Well, they booked our arrival the day of the cruise so we had to cancel our plans.
As the months wore on and we started to receive many brochures regarding Oceania line, we noticed that the fare was more than $1000 less than our "early booking" fare. Oceania adjusted our fare to reflect this lower price but then eliminated our "free gratuities". They will not "fix" this and I feel that their advertising practices border on outright fraud. I had no problems on board with service and cleanliness of our stateroom as well as meals. But being "cheated" voids all good feelings about Oceania lines and I am recommending that you avoid them!
I was inquiring about a quote for a cruise scheduled for July 2017. Mary at their website gave me the information and was told I had to respond by Sept 9th to reserve. Within 3 days of my request for the quote I was told by Mary I had to forward $1500 by Sept 4th to hold my reservation. I had not made a reservation, and understood I had until the 9th to decide. This reservation and deposit would be almost a year in advance and I didn't have through Sept 9th to reply, please??? POOR CUSTOMER SERVICE. I WILL CONTACT A DIFFERENT CRUISE COMPANY.
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We had booked an Alaska cruise for May 20th 2016 leaving from Vancouver and disembarking in Victoria. The reservation was made in Nov 2014 and we received many confirmations from Oceania. Then 11 days before departure we were notified we could not disembark in Victoria but would have to continue on to Seattle. Although we were assured Oceania would get us from Seattle to Vancouver somehow they could not confirm those arrangements. We asked for a flight from Seattle to Vancouver but that request was ignored.
Since, due to health reasons, long road trips for me are not recommended and they could not give any assurances we would not be driven from Seattle to Vancouver so on May 16th we cancelled the cruise. As it turned out the mode of travel offered to got from Seattle to Vancouver was by road and the notification of final travel arrangements was not received till May 20th, the day of departure. Due to the late cancellation Oceania won't give us a refund or apply the funds to a future cruise however we only cancelled due to them changing our departure point at the last minute. Needless to say we will never cruise with Oceania again and thought others should be warned.
My wife and I were booked on the cruise on Insignia in May-June 2015 from Australia to Tahiti. It was 21 day cruise. I got badly sick and fainted seven times in eight days, so we decided that I should return home from New Zealand. I asked if Oceania would cover a part of my return flight because I had already paid for flight back home from Tahiti. The Oceania representative refused to consider the issue. I asked him if it was Oceania's practice to have monetary gain of sick customers. He replied that it was so. Considering that I had already paid for the last 12 days of the cruise and the airfare, Oceania had quite a monetary gain from me. I wrote to Oceania's customer service about the issue, but never got any reply. I have been on four Oceania cruises and my Wife on seven. One would think that they would have some flexibility for loyal customers.
Within 36 hrs. of boarding Riviera (Oceania cruise) we were sick along with almost 100 other passengers. We were quarantined in our cabin for 2 days. Aruba health officials would not let the boat dock (as the ship was carrying too many ill people). Although we recovered we were prevented from going on most our excursions. The indifference shown to us was unbelievable. No attempt was made to compensate us. First they make you sick and when you are well they prevent you from enjoying the rest of your trip. This was suppose to a trip of a lifetime. Instead it was a trip from hell.
We were in suite 8061. We left the Kiel Canal and entered the North Sea. The weather and conditions changed as soon as we entered the North Sea and it began to get choppy as early as 5pm. The Cruise Director came over the PA system saying that the weather would be a bit rough for a few hours but would then settle down before 9pm that evening. Subsequently, he corrected this saying that the weather would be rough until maybe 11pm and that the show in the theatre was being cancelled. We had booked to eat in the Toscana restaurant at 8.30pm but went to the restaurant and cancelled this at about 7.30 pm as we felt that there was no way we could enjoy dinner given the weather conditions and effect it was having. We could at this early stage see that people had been sick and that older people were having difficulty maintaining their balance throughout the boat.
We proceeded to the Terrace restaurant just to get something light to discover that there was only one other guest in the entire restaurant clearly because people were afraid to try and eat. We went back to our suite passing evidence of people being sick along the way and decided to stay in our suite. Many items were already on the floor arising from the ships movement, and we secured others, before going to bed.
At approximately 1.30 am we were awakened by an almighty noise from within the room as well as a severe rocking of the ship. We managed to turn on a light to discover that we were covered in broken glass with large shards and tiny fragments all over the bed, including a large piece just a few inches from my wife's face. The glass table had been thrown across the room and smashed in pieces. The chairs and the bedside lockers equally had been thrown across the room taking with them our respective spectacles, without which both myself and my wife are effectively blind.
We attempted initially to get to a phone across the room but I received cuts to my feet in trying to do so from all the glass around, which I could not avoid. Eventually, I managed to find a pair of slippers and walk over the glass, to the phone and rang 02 the number for our butler. As normal this went to a message saying to hang up as the number was being paged. We waited and waited, but no message back ever came. We again went to the phone and this time rang reception who advised us to put everything on the floor and that they were very busy dealing with events on the ship.
There was no attempt to understand our plight or our stress or the fact that our room was covered in glass and we couldn't see any anything and that we were both in shock over what was happening. Reception did say they would send someone up and after about 10 minutes a staff member arrived, took one look inside the door and said they would get a hoover, for the glass. They did not enter the room or see the full damage or seek to see the state that we were both in, arising from our shock.
We waited and waited for someone to come back and after about a further 30 minutes we again rang reception who again said they would send someone up. A few minutes later a senior house staff member came to the door and immediately called for a team to be brought in to help. In fairness, we would say that once they came this particular team were really good and understood our situation. A special word of thanks is due to for her kindness and understanding. Having spent some time cleaning the room the Senior staff member advised that she would like to move us to another suite for the night so that she could ensure a full clean up before we used the suite again as they would need to ensure that they had fully dealt with all the glass. We were happy to do so.
When we got to our new temporary suite, both of commented on how it was that we had been through over an hour of serious stress where we concerned about our welfare and that there hadn't been a single communication from the bridge of the ship to say everything was alright. Clearly something big had happened, but there was no communication or reassurance from anyone as we felt trapped in our suite for over an hour, awaiting help.
We were even more shocked early the following morning when an announcement did eventually come from the Cruise Director making light of what had happened and saying that we had been hit by a freak wave, but there had been only Cosmetic Damage to the ship and that is a direct quote, from him. This was followed by a similar message from the Captain, again making light of our personal experience and the shock that we had suffered. We felt isolated and ignored during the incident. What for instance if my wife face had been hit by the 5 by 1 inch shard of glass that landed inches from her face? And now we felt that no one took the matter seriously, and had no regard for the trauma she (and I to a lesser extent), had suffered. The damage to our room which can be seen on the attached video and to our personal well being and safety both physical and mental, was now being dismissed as cosmetic and/or not serious.
We subsequently raised the matter with our butler as to why our call had not been returned when we were in the middle of such trauma. He advised us he was off duty but that the call should have gone to someone else to answer and that he would raise it with the Concierge. He later informed us that he had informed the Concierge, who would be in touch with us directly. We are still awaiting his call!
Subsequently, that day we went outside on deck 5 and took photographs of the so called cosmetic damage. These included as you can see from the attached photographs, a full metal door being ripped off its hinges resulting in substantial flooding, metal boxes containing life jackets being ripped off their connections to the wall of the ship, the top hand rail on deck 5 being ripped off and damage to the ceiling of the ship on deck 5. We respectfully suggest that all of these constitute substantially more than cosmetic damage! And that we were mislead totally by both the Cruise Director and Captain, when eventually, they did communicate with us.
We also have been given to understand what has been described as being cosmetic damage and nothing serious actually resulted also in Guests sleeping in the corridors as it made them feel safer than being in their rooms. A number of people suffering physical injury requiring medical attention including broken bones. A number of people leaving the ship at the next port of call. Arising from all of this, we have a number of serious and we believe essential questions that Oceania need to respond to. Amongst these are the following;
Given the state of the weather leaving the Kiel Canal /River Elbe, why did the Captain proceed? Even if he did proceed, why when the heavy seas continued, did he not seek shelter? Both this and question 1 above, are of extreme importance given that the Captain is well aware of the age profile of the passengers he had on board who were largely well into their sixties and beyond, and therefore more prone to the effects of a ship tossing about on the seas. Why did it take an hour for any attention to be given to us as distressed passengers suffering trauma, unable to see, and unable to leave their room? Why did concierge say they would ring us, but never did? Or did the butler mislead us? Why is a ripped off steel door and other damage described as cosmetic? Why was no reassurance available from the bridge at the time the freak wave struck and people such as ourselves, were being traumatized and in fear?
My husband and I booked an Oceania Cruise beginning in Rio for Dec. 12, 2015. Oceania said we needed to purchase our visa through them (which they more than doubled the cost of to go through CIBT). They never mentioned a cut off date to send in paperwork. I FedExed the completed paperwork in mid September and received a call on Sept. 22 after they had received and said no problem. I called on Oct. 26 for an update and was told I was in a group to call and tell my visa would not be ready. I made an appointment at Brazilian Consulate but by that time appointment dates were Thanksgiving.
I made a trip to NYC and was told I should not have used CIBT (they are limited to processing only so many). Oceania sales team was totally defensive trying to blame ME!!! This was the WORST experience I have ever had with a cruise line and I have traveled on many - beware they took my money and claim they have no liability. Now I'm needing to pursue them legally - they never even offered me the money toward another cruise.
Having sailed with Oceania previously, we were excited by the prospect of a booking for an African cruise on Nov. 24, only to discover that Oceania actually did NOT offer the special $99.00 pre-cruise as advertised, claiming this was a limited-time offer, even though we just, yesterday, received yet another brochure offering the same special. This is blatantly false advertising, and we have decided to take our business elsewhere from now on. Aside from this "mistake" in their brochures, there were other discrepancies; date of disembarkation listed as 12/8, when in fact it is 12/9: not an insignificant mistake when one is booking air tickets. Goodbye, Oceania!!
Picked unlimited tours for $900 each total of 8 ($2,700) tours. Picked by Oceania Cruises representative who knew grandmother could not walk very well (sometimes needs a walker). Half way with the tours in Barcelona, we took the tour which did not say "not for wheelchairs" in the booklet and guide assured us there was a train and not a lot of walking, not to worry (it was a lie). Guide rushed us and expected us to walk in 5 minutes through 10 lights in traffic just to see the outside of the famous Gaudi church (which we saw with the guided bus earlier).
On the way back due to her rushing, grandmother fell on the street and hit her head, back and elbows. She ended up in emergency room with 8 stitches and over $2,000 in Oceania medical bills. Needless to say the rest of our trip was very limited and went to Oceania rep to alert them we will not be taking any more tours, due to their misleading brochure and guides. They said tour is not refundable, too bad, that they will call main office in Miami to see if they could give us $100 each as a refund. They calculated full price instead of the offered discounted price and it was subject to approval upon return. $100 for half of a service of $900 is not fair! Fair would have been to refund the unused portion.
I just want to warn any future passengers that although they will give you good housekeeping service and take water to your table, when it boils down to the real deal and REALLY TAKING CARE OF YOU, DO NOT EXPECT IT. For such an expensive premium cruise, I did not expect such a poor response at all. THIS IS THE LAST TIME I CRUISE THIS LINE AND WILL TELL ALL MY FRIENDS AND FAMILY IT IS NOT FAIR =(. AT THE VERY LEAST DO NOT TAKE THE TOURS... AND DON'T EXPECT EMPATHY OR FAIRNESS.
We booked a cruise with Oceania Cruises and when we got on board on the first day we were presented with a letter stating that there has been gastro on board??? Which we were not at all pleased with. Lo and behold as we sailed the sick bay was inundated with sick passengers + my wife and I. We lost 6 days of our cruise and we could not leave the ship to see our choice of countries. The cruise directors could do nothing for us and we just asked for some compensation. They refused point blank. In our opinion they should have closed the ship down.
My husband and I took a 20-day Ancient Legends Cruise from December 26, 2012 to January 17, 2013 through Easter Island. The outgoing flight from JFK Airport in New York to Santiago, Chile had no personnel from LAN. An airport worker told us that the plane was cancelled for twelve hours resulting in an unexpected $289 hotel bill. Oceania did nothing to help us with the administration of the company it had booked us on. The flight on the return trip took us through LAX adding three hours to an already exhausting trip from Papeete, Tahiti, rather than booking us directly to JFK and not having us go through customs and immigration and walk a mile to the domestic terminal in LA. The concierge and purser aboard the Marina did not want to hear about it nor did the administration in Miami, FL.
There were very few activities on board. The masseuses were unlicensed, and the shore excursions were exorbitantly priced. Plan your own trips in port. We did get a 35% discount on a $439 per person cultural excursion of Easter Island when we complained. There is no such thing as duty-free shopping aboard the ship. Prices in their stores are either list or double anywhere else. Liquor is very expensive. Buy a premium package for $999 if you plan to drink. Be very aware of charges to your credit card; we got an unauthorized charge of $165 to an American Express card added on the day we left the ship. We got a rude response when we called the Miami offices and were told to notify the company by email. We did so and never got any response. We disputed the charge with the credit card company and will not pay it as it never appeared on our final invoice from the ship, and we have no credit receipt for it.
My wife and I were to take a 20-day cruise to the Middle East on Oceania Cruises departing April 20, 2011. After paying fully for the trip, the "Arab Spring" turmoil began. Soon after, the US State Department issued a "travel warning" advising US citizens to defer non-essential travel to Egypt. When trying to cancel and apply our deposit to another Oceania booking, as other travel companies had been offering, they became very inflexible. And they refused to make any exceptions to their cancellation policies. We have lost 75% of the cost of our trip, which seems unreasonable considering the highly unusual circumstances. Can you help us?
We had booked a trip on Oceania Cruises for March 2011 to Asia. Before we went on that trip we booked another cruise to the Caribbean over the Christmas holiday 2010. There were several things we wrote to the company about that we were dissatisfied with. The dining room service was very slow, there was very little entertainment in the evening and a fan blade flew off a fan on the pool deck hitting someone's deck chair. They did not respond to the letter so I told the travel agent who must have contacted them.
We received a call from Carlos ** saying we should not go on the second cruise and we did not belong on the cruise line. He was extremely rude when he spoke to me. My daughter-in-law had been invited to go on this cruise to take my husband's place as he had been ill. She took three weeks off from work and we arranged for my husband to fly to their house to help my son babysit. After having this conversation with Mr **, I decided to write to the company president and tell him how poorly we had been treated. I received an e-mail with a letter attached shortly after saying we were no longer welcome on the cruise.
We did not speak badly about Oceania before this occurred. We both were looking forward to this cruise. They would not change their position. They refunded the money for the cruise portion. I am sending you a link of a Help Me Howard program that was aired in Miami. I could also send you all documents that are necessary for you to review. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mHZ37O2OrGk
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