Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines
Overall Satisfaction Rating
1.34/5
  • 5 stars
    8
  • 4 stars
    4
  • 3 stars
    3
  • 2 stars
    13
  • 1 star
    91
Based on 119 ratings submitted in the last yearSHOW RATING DISTRIBUTION

Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines

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Last updated: Dec. 9, 2017

622 Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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Warren of Penrith South, Other Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 9, 2017

Warning. Future cruises deposits paid for on board are nonrefundable and non exchangeable, if you want to cancel the cruise later. I lost $800 deposit, which Royal Caribbean were not prepared to refund or move to a different cruise. I'm not sure if this is common in the cruise industry.

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Juli of Dayton, MN Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Dec. 6, 2017

We haven't even been on our cruise yet but I already know I will never book with RC again. As I was booking it, I spoke with knowledgeable easy-to-understand people every time I called. This is our first cruise and I had lot of questions. Once I was booked and called to ask questions, I spoke with rude, hard-to-understand people that had no idea how to help. I would hang up and try another person, just to have the same problems. The website is huge and hard to navigate. I would copy-paste my reservation number, but half the time it told me it was a bad number and I'd have to call to get access. I'm really crossing my fingers that the actual trip is better than the phone experiences have been! :'(

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Diane of Hilton Head Island, SC Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 2, 2017

We booked a trip with Choice Air (which is owned by Royal Caribbean Cruises). This agency can only be used when you have a cruise booked with RCCL or their subsidiaries. I agreed to a price (nonrefundable and not changeable ticket) months before our cruise because I thought that they would have better than competitive rates. Well for one they DO NOT; and two, they charged me a $15 fee without telling me that the cost of my tickets had this $15 fee in it. I only found out when I pulled up the Delta ticket information on Delta site. I called Choice Air and they were unsympathetic and unapologetic. I would think that this practice is against a consumer law. I would not use them again and I would tell anyone thinking of booking through them to wait (if you have months left to actually use the ticket). This Delta flight that is advertised now is cheaper than Choice Air and I would not have to pay the $15 fee to boot. Stay away from them.

James of Kensington, Other Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 29, 2017

http://www.royalcaribbeancruisesofficialsite.com/. Boycott this cruise line for discriminating against the disabled. Royal Caribbean Cruises employ idiots from Guatemala who cannot speak English & give out false information. One such idiot told me earlier this year 2017 that Royal Caribbean Cruises do not allow service dogs on board their ships to travel with their disabled owners because it was against the cruise lines health and safety regulations & they had no place on the ships for the dogs to go to the toilet! I had never traveled overseas with my dog before and as such believed him. I had to place the dog in a boarding kennel at a cost of $36 per day. My dog is still in the boarding kennel as I cannot afford to have him flown overseas to me.

At the time of writing this review being November 29, 2017 my dog boarding fees have exceeded $8000. I discovered that the information that Royal Caribbean Cruises lines gave me was false when someone on Facebook told me that by law they must allow service dogs on their ships. With this information I contacted their management staff and asked why they had lied to me about allowing my service dog to come with me on the cruise. They sent me back an email apologizing for the "misinformation" as they called it and for all the distress and inconvenience that the cruise line had caused me. When I asked them to pay for the dogs boarding fees and airfare to be transported to me they very selfishly said that the best they could do was offer me $100 in credit towards my next cruise. I was flabbergasted to say the least.

I've had an attorney send them a letter as well as the human rights organizations send them emails however this absolute bastard of a cruise line has chosen to ignore all correspondence. My attorney said that they couldn't care less about their passengers as he witnesses this sort of arrogant behavior from them on a weekly basis from the numerous complaints that passengers submit about Royal Caribbean's illegal and unprofessional conduct. Given that these assholes like to ignore their paying passengers after lying to them and costing them more than the stinking cruise in boarding fees for a service dog I thought it would be fitting to return the favor and build them a website where I can tell my story to thousands of potential Royal Caribbean Cruise customers.

I am also sending out bulk emails and newsletters to every Pet Store & Veterinary Surgery and Dog Pound that I can find advising them about the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line denying a service dog on board their ship and taking up a petition where potential and previous passengers can boycott the cruise line and let them know that they too would never sail with a company that discriminates against the disabled and their service dog. See the site and sign the petition on my form at http://www.royalcaribbeancruisesofficialsite.com/.

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Lindsay of Cape Coral, FL Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 17, 2017

Customer Service is horrible! Called to add people to our upcoming cruise, instead my call turned into us canceling with Royal Caribbean and going to Norwegian Cruise Lines. Also our family was “Diamond”.

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Joe of Hackensack, NJ Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 16, 2017

So we cruised out of Bayonne, NJ on November 4, 2017 aboard Anthem of The Seas. First the ship is far too large with far too many passengers which was understaffed by a group of employees from 65 different countries and they work so hard. How many times did we need to be reminded! After we had boarded, we ventured up to deck 14 to the Windjammer buffet. Nothing special, it was so crowded, passengers were eating at tables that had not been bussed, nor cleaned. No wonder there were so many cases of Norovirus. Both unreported and reported, if you report a case of the virus, you will be quarantined for 24 hours in your cabin. So pleasant to get sick on your vacation, that by the way you took vacation time off and the cost of the cruise, in addition to all the greedy extras. It is best to purchase you beverage packages onboard the ship for obvious reasons.

The food in the Windjammer was just okay, nothing special. It reminded us of people that love buffets, eat, eat, and eat more. Never enough. The Cafe Promenade serves a Hot Beverages, but please do not expect to get your Hot Beverage served in a cardboard cup with a plastic lid and sleeve. Rather it is served in a ceramic mug, no lid, so that you can accidentally spill your hot beverage on a fellow passenger. Yes, passengers take their coffee up many decks in the elevators and yes I was burned on my leg in the elevator by a fellow passenger.

RCCL, oh my... their only concern is money, all about greed. Why do we as customers pay months in advance for a RCCL cruise? So we can all can screwed! Never again would we ever cruise on RCCL! It is nothing but a rip off. So I had asked for skim milk for our coffee, I was told I could go to deck 14, the Windjammer buffet to get some. Such great service! They basically stink. When I asked the attendant in the Cafe for a takeaway cup for our hot beverage, I was told, go to Starbucks across the way, they have takeaway cups. Great service again!

Going to the pools on deck 14, do you like sitting arm to arm on the pool deck, well be prepared. It looked like an orgy of guests in bathing suits, even the fat men with their big bellies were having a belly flop contest! Really nice, such class. They were getting their money's worth with their beverage package. The Grand on deck 3 serves breakfast from 8am to 9:30am... a big 90 minutes for either a small buffet or order from the menu. Beware, there are long lines to get a table, you will be asked if you want to sit with a stranger or strangers. Not much attention to detail, I was served a mug of coffee with lipstick on the rim and down the side. My apologies sir, he must have been blind.

We were seated at 9:20am and shortly thereafter, even though the dining room was crowded, the buffett was being taken away, because they are so busy with so many guests, they need time to setup for lunch at 11:30am. Who is really on vacation, who is the guest? The Chic dining room, the main dining room was okay. Food throughout the ship all tasted the same. Again nothing special. We had a dinner reservation at 5:30pm every day, same two tables. The head waiter, waiter and asst. waiter were nice. They did try, maybe too hard.

What was so damn annoying is midway through the dinner, the parade of the staff throughout the dining room, loud music and the typical hype of oh they work so hard... setting up for those tips. I do not need to be reminded about tips and I dislike having my dinner interrupted by a parade of waiters. Really, are you kidding me! It wreaks of being cheesy and cheap. Garnishes for my gin and tonic like a lime, well that was not available because of the risk of a virus. Really? More stupidity. Be ready for the OTT of Purell, well it is just a band-aid for washing your hands and fingers with warm soapy water. Makes sense, not on RCCL... it just looks good to the CDC and US Coast Guard.

The Royals Casino save your money, the slots do not pay, better off at roulette if you want to lose your money in an honorable way. What is interesting is that the ship's registry is Nassau, Bahamas. I wonder why? Casino gaming in terms of payouts do not apply, and what about wage and hour laws, employees working 16 hours+ in a day? Guest Services, they are a bunch of wannabe agents, attending to more long lines of dissatisfied guests. RCCL reminds me of the other rip off The Atlantis, you prepay months in advance and are basically screwed. RCCL does not care about its guests and it showed time and again. The excursion to Kennedy Space Center was a waste of money. The park opens at approximately 9am, but we did not arrive until 1:30pm and the park closed at 6 pm but we had to be back at the bus at 5:45 pm. You do the math. Great park, not enough time.

RCCL said on our itinerary screen on our TV that we had until 6:45pm, a lie. Coco Cay, you do not need a tender ticket, RCCL never tells its guests this minor detail. RCCL would rather have its guests stand in long lines for hours to obtain a tender ticket that you do not need to leave the ship. If you need an umbrella, it will cost you $25. I would skip Coco Cay, nothing but 5,000 people packed on a small dirty beach. It is all about the money with RCCL.

Our Nassau stop was the best, we did our own excursion. We got a Hilton Resort Day Pass, and enjoyed a lovely fresh grilled fish lunch, the pool was lovely and the beach too. It is within walking distance of the port, safe, etc... 15 minutes or so. If you like a flea market scene, then visit the Promenade on deck 5. Some dopey guy saying no touchy a million times over. Watches, hats, shirts, all wreaks of cheesy nonsense. And how about an art auction? We could not wait to get off the ship, it was the single most disappointing vacation in my 60 years of life. And RCCL does not care, all they do is apologize. BFD! Never again!

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Customer increased Rating by 3 stars!
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Sean of Miami, FL Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 14, 2017

My first ever RC cruise is coming up. Was told at the time of booking that it is safer to book a flight (Miami to San Juan in this case) through RC because we are protected from being booted off of a flight. Yesterday I got a call (two weeks before leaving) that my American Airlines flight, booked through RC, was “changed” (with no explanation). Other flight options that day conflicted with our work schedule, and we were told by TWO agents at Air to Sea that there were no flights available the following day. Also we were told that they may collect additional airfare from us to make changes! And THEN, RC changed our flight without our consent to a 14 hour flight through Philadelphia. This meant losing a night in San Juan with a hotel room we already booked, only to have an epic layover in Philly with a new hotel expense.

I called reservations and spoke to the most hideously indifferent service agent I’ve ever spoken to in my life, who literally did not show the least bit of concern for the predicament at hand, to ask if we could change our cruise itinerary to a local port in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale on account of the flight circumstances. She was truly delighted to inform me with a snippy manner that there were no guarantees and that we could cancel the cruise at any time with a “penalty.” It was clear after only about one minute that she simply had no intention of trying to help us in any capacity whatsoever, and seemed to somehow take pleasure in our frustration.

We then called American Airlines and they were absolutely puzzled as there was a flight from Miami to San Juan the next morning at 10am! American immediately accommodated us with no fuss and no EXTRA fare. It was as though we were deliberately lied to by Royal Caribbean by not just one, but by two agents back-to-back. Unexpected changes happen, sure, but lying to us about it did not help matters. The bright, chirpy sales agent that helped us to book our cruise at the beginning sharply contrasted with the agents that we spoke to when encountering an involuntary itinerary change. Based on this experience alone, I am not inclined to book w/ RC again.

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Conchita of Tamarac, FL Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 11, 2017

In April 2017, we booked a 12 night European cruise to sail to/from Miami, FL/Barcelona, Spain, in June 2018 to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary. In September 2017, we booked non-refundable airfare for $1,530 and ground transportation for $126 through their Air2Sea program. In October 2017, the cruise was canceled by Royal Caribbean.

Received an email stating they would refund change of air fees up to $400 for international reservations if we re-booked by October 25th. On October 24th, we re-booked a 7 night cruise sailing to/from Miami, FL/San Juan, PR. The $126 ground transportation fee was applied to our new cruise. The $1,530 was applied to 2 round trip airline tickets from Miami to San Juan plus we were charged $75/person for the change of air fees. We checked the airline website at time of re-booking and fares totaled $716.40 for 2 passengers not $1,530 as charged. They refused to provide a credit stating that they were following airline policy. However, we did not book through American Airlines and we did not cancel our cruise, they did. We were shafted!!!

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Roxane of St JohnS, NL Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 9, 2017

Try to change my vacation for a later date when I found out my ports were changed. The cruise line would not let me do it and I had to go to ** ports that I didn’t want to go to. I paid extra money to go to the ports of my choice but no money refunded. Never book on Royal Caribbean ever again.

Customer increased Rating by 2 stars!
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Christy of Sun Lakes, AZ Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 8, 2017

I purchased a Sky Loft Suite for an April 28 sailing from New York round trip to Bermuda. I booked this for a fiftieth birthday celebration. I booked this room because the Royal Caribbean website showed that you received a multitude of amenities including the Royal Genie, free specialty restaurants, free gratuities, free full drink package, among other things. We were thrilled to take this trip and have all of that included. After we booked we ask my dad and his girlfriend to come with us. We knew they would want a balcony and thought it would be helpful to get them Priority embarkation and disembarkation and researched what level of cabin would allow this. In digging through the RC website, we found a faq sheet. In that sheet we noticed that the Sky Loft Suite we had booked would be changing levels of service in 2018 making so that this $8000 room didn't get much more than a suite.

I immediately phoned Royal Caribbean and was on the phone nearly an hour with three different people. First I was told that we would get all those amenities. Then I was told we wouldn't. Then I was told that the level actually would go down on sailings after April 28, the exact day we were departing. I was also told that they couldn't discuss everything with me as we had scheduled through cruise.com... Really! So after that call I phoned cruise.com. Another hour of back and forth with RC. Initially my cruise.com representative said that RC said we would receive all of those amenities after placing me on hold and speaking with them. I said I didn't feel comfortable with that and wanted in writing. We then did a three-way call and now RC was saying that we would not get it. That day we left it as going to the escalations department and that conversations would go between my cruise.com rep and RC.

I checked back with my rep two days later and was told it had been escalated. I had no updates at 9 days after booking and having the first day of discussions so I decided to phone my contact at cruise.com. I shared with her that those amenities were still listed on the RC site. She phoned RC and her contact was not in. The next day I got a call back from her letting me know that Royal Caribbean refused to honor the items that had been listed as amenities that were listed on their site for the room I had purchased. That, I believe, is the definition of bait and switch. I will never cruise with them again and am now waiting to see what type of refund on our deposit that we can get.

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R. O. of Sarasota, FL Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 31, 2017

Originally booked Harmony of the Seas for Oct 28th departure for our honeymoon. Due to a promotion and cross country move, my wife and I were forced to reschedule. RCCL doesn't usually accommodate these if it's past last sail date but the following should explain why they did. After much pleading with customer service, they finally agreed to allow us to change our booking & ship to the Allure for the week prior. We originally booked a Grand Suite on the Harmony and unfortunately the only suite available was a Junior Suite on the Allure. The cruise line agreed if we were willing to do an even trade with no refund. We agreed. This is where it get's interesting.

First we're loyal to Royal (5 cruises 1 week +, balcony or higher on all within 3 years). We always indulge in the Spas, Specialty dining packages, Onboard Shopping, Deluxe drink packages, etc. We are also Casino VIP members (really they should have given us an onboard credit for the difference in rooms but I'm not greedy and felt it was fair since they accommodated us. The issue starts here.

First, I politely asked if they'd give us complimentary WiFi onboard the Allure for our JS considering our GS had it included as part of the suite. (We needed this to get back to the moving company, various other tasks assoc. with moving). Despite us being great customers and on our honeymoon, they refused and directed me to purchase. (I did because I had to). While shocking, I could stomach this since technically, again they did me a favor before (still seems stingy considering they sold a JS for the price of a GS on an older ship with a closer sail date and likely sold my GS for the going rate realizing a huge net benefit to them). The next issue is unforgivable and terminated any chance of future business with me.

We had prepaid our gratuities on Harmony before switching (231$ - mind you, we always leave extra. This is already higher than Allure due to the GS having a higher gratuity rate than JS). Keep in mind, this was an "EVEN" trade in price. Only difference was to be the room. I didn't ask for a refund of the 42$ overall difference in gratuities. JS is roughly 27 a day for 2 people vs 231 total in GS. I did however, expect my room attendant on Allure to get it. Nope... I noticed 2x 13.50 being charged daily to my folio for grats.

Guest services on the ship advised that my new cruise was repriced (mind you the total hadn't changed). RCCL literally just lumped the prepaid gratuities from Harmony into the cruise fare and said that the grats were no longer prepaid (no I'm not joking), guest services called shoreside multiple times with me getting quite upset about this. In short, the decision was final, either I double paid gratuities or my room attendant would be shafted. RCCL literally stole prepaid gratuity from their employees and expected me to cover for them. Before you ask, I pleaded, fought and even threatened to never sail again (this spanned 72 hours)... They didn't budge (polite however).

What did I do you ask? Well I did the right thing. I gave my room attendant $150 - usually he'd get more as I always leave additional $100 on top of prepaid. I had RCCL reverse the additional gratuity in their system since we didn't use the dining hall. Why? Because he worked his tail off and he was wonderful. Never in my life have I been treated this way by a company I'm loyal to. Even more important, I've never seen a company do that to their employees... And for that, they lose my business. Think twice before sailing them. They used to be wonderful but my last two cruises have shown me that they view customers as $ and employees as expendable/depreciating assets. They never refunded nor applied my already paid gratuities to my attendant. They just lined their pockets. Originally: Booked Harmony. Room: Grand Suite. Gratuities: Prepaid ($231). New: Allure. Room: Junior Suite. Gratuities: Missing.

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IRENE of Playa Del Carmen, Other Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 28, 2017

Travelled on the Brilliance of the Seas October the 4th, 2017 from Barcelona. I have never been so angry and frustrated in a cruise like this last time. They charged us up to 21% of taxes plus service charges in all our purchases and beverage packages, photo and spa services arguing that our ITINERARY never touched international waters, so we were only cruising in the European Union, so that was the reason they charged us this outrageous taxes. For example. I bought a beverage package of 10 drinks with a value of 75 USD and I ended paying 96 USD. I bought 2 photos, one with a 50% off and the final price was 30 USD and they charged me 21% tax, arguing that the side of the coast we were cruising was the most expensive for taxes. Guest services explanation was always short and confusing. There was NO DUTY FREE even on cruise days due to the same reason so a $10 USD item end up costing $12.50.

This is the first time it has happen to me and I WILL NEVER CRUISE with Royal Caribbean again, they should had informed me or my agency of this taxes plus services charges plus no duty free before paying the cruise. Crew was regular except for our waiters in the main room that were outstanding. We booked a balcony and the glass of the balcony was so dirty that we couldn´t sit to enjoy the views, only standing up. Cabin was TINY. Formal dinners never included Lobster, you had to pay an extra fee to eat lobster. The IZUMI Japanese restaurant was a disaster, horrible food, tiny restaurant, bad service. Night shows are outdated and so bad we took off at minute 10 from a couple of them. No sitting chairs in bars, crowded Centrum offered only 20-30 chairs to sit.

Schooners Bar's music is awful and the wine bar, only served wines so you cannot order a cocktail, you had to go yourself to another bar to bring a beverage and sit down there if someone in your party was having wine. Bartenders at bars were not really friendly, only doing their job. Food was average. I have traveled many times in cruises, even in Royal Caribbean and it had never been so bad as this last time. NO customer service yet and I have already placed 2 complaints, so I guess they are not interested in solving real problems.

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Jill of Coldwater, MI Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 26, 2017

I paid nearly $3000 to reserve a cruise, flight & insurance for a Mediterranean cruise leaving June 7, 2018. The cruise line cancelled the trip because the ship has since been privately chartered & they are not being responsive in refunding my money. I'm absolutely sick about this as we are an elderly retired couple & this is a lot of money for us. My travel agency has also gotten nowhere in obtaining a full refund!

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Scott of Lumberton, NJ Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 24, 2017

Welp. We booked a cruise for Nov 12, 2017 Allure of the Seas. here it is 18 days till we are to go on our cruise and we STILL don't know our ports. The itinerary is Nassau, St. Maarten, San Juan. St Maarten and San Juan are in bad shape right now. And RC has been changing the Itineraries since the hurricanes. Well everybody but ours (and a few other ships). They have been EXTREMELY vague in their updates and if you call to get any kind of info, they treat you like crap. This is our first cruise experience and I would say for sure... The last.

George of Edmonton, AB Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 22, 2017

We have an issue with the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line in that they refuse to refund our Cruise Fare or offer any future credit for rescheduling the cruise which departs out of Puerto Rico on October the 7th. I have told them about the Government of Canada Travel Advisory advising against ANY travel to the area because of the devastation caused by the recent hurricanes. Our current booking puts us in Puerto Rico a week before the cruise (Sept. 30 - Oct. 7th) staying at the Marriott Hotel which we have been in constant contact with. They (the Marriott) have absolutely no problem with us cancelling our reservation because there are widespread power outages, flooding, food, gas and water shortages, etc. over the entire island.

Our airline carrier has also agreed to fully refund our flight due to these circumstances. I had purchased Cruise Travel Insurance through the travel agent (Vacations to Go) for the duration of the cruise. However, due to the stipulated list of "covered events" on that policy, a travel advisory issued by a government does not constitute a valid enough reason to cancel. Neither does the fact there are 100% power outages on the Island, little or no food, limited water supplies and there is a curfew prohibiting anyone from going out after 6:00pm!

Royal Caribbean has already modified our itinerary twice and has already cancelled the Sept 23rd sailing leaving out of Puerto Rico. Considering that I am leaving for Puerto Rico this coming Friday, I cannot risk them cancelling or even altering the dates of sailing during my stay in Puerto Rico because I may not be able to get a flight changed to get back home. This in addition to the Government of Canada warning and the fact that there are documented shortages of food, water, power and gasoline should be acceptable reasons to cancel. Their policy (the Royal Caribbean policy) of not accepting my reasoning to modify or cancel (even with Trip Cancellation insurance) is totally unacceptable and should be made public so that other people can be made aware of this. At this point, if I modify or cancel, I lose 100% of my prepaid fare!

After posting the above letter to our local press, I learned that the same cruise scheduled for the 30th was also cancelled. I waited until 2 days prior to departure to cancel the cruise in hopes that they would cancel this cruise as well which did depart as scheduled on the 7th of Oct. I have now officially lost 100% of my fare and have initiated an insurance claim through the aforementioned travel cancellation insurance.

It is now over 2 weeks and I still have no refund for the pre-purchased drink packages and shore excursions. This is by far the WORST company I have EVER dealt with and it amazes me that a company this size cares so little about customer service! I have also learned recently that this company is in the midst of a NUMBER of class-action lawsuits for endangering lives of passengers on a cruise! How does a company like this stay in business?

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Jeremy of St. George, UT Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 21, 2017

Nickel and dime you to death! Everything has 18% gratuity added. My family of seven is charged $11.50 per day for food service gratuities. Too many days on the boat...very minimal time on the islands. We are bored after 6 days. They keep you on the ship in hopes you’ll spend your money. Royal Caribbean is a well-oiled money-making machine. Beware and consider planning your own vacation.

Jon of Manchester, Other Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 18, 2017

We were a party of Seven in UK and booked 12 months early to avoid disappointment on Vision of the Seas 7th June 2018 Cruise around the Med (Europe). We received an email informing us that our cruise had now been "chartered" effectively cancelled for us with no explanation. RCI provided options (one being you can have your money back) in a Reply Form that was to be updated and should be emailed back to their Customer Services department. I tried contacting RCI with suggested phone number on two occasions but the reps initially had no knowledge and said the cruise was still fine, After I insisted he went away to find out what was going on. He came back and confirmed I was correct. Reps were not prepared to give any explanation.

Using RCI suggested Customer Services emails addresses I sent emails off for an explanation they returned "unknown address." This fact alone give rise to some very serious concerns about RCI and how they run their operations. We would not recommend RCI to anyone, to date I did manage to find a working RCI email address but had no replies. Sent Reply Form off but don't know if we will get any money returned from RCI. Don't give them your business.

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Jacque of George, Other Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 16, 2017

I have booked two previous cruises on Royal Caribbean International and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. I decided to book a third cruise sailing in 2018. After booking the cruise on Royal Caribbean's website and making payment directly to Royal Caribbean I found that the booking has been referred to a travel agent (Cruiseosity) with whom I have had no contact. The practical consequence is that I have lost the ability to transact on the Royal Caribbean website and also that I suspect my personal information have been shared with a third party without my consent. Four attempts to contact Royal Caribbean International to rectify this matter has resulted only in automated responses thanking me for my mail. I held this company and their service offering in high regard but unfortunately this experience have left me disappointed and very frustrated.

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Cheri of Farmington Hills, MI Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 15, 2017

Since hurricane Maria has devastated Puerto Rico my husband and I and two other couples wanted to change our cruise to a Royal Caribbean Cruise that left out of Miami instead of Puerto Rico. They refuse to give us a full refund since the cruise is not canceled. As other people have commented, the hotels we were staying in are not functioning. What horrible customer service!!! They have lost our business and our friends and we are frequent cruisers with RCCL, so sad.

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Robert of Clemmons, NC Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 13, 2017

We are very unhappy with Royal Caribbean's policy and customer service. Last year we book a cruise to include St. Martin, Haiti and San Juan. Because of the recent hurricane devastation the destinations have been changed to Nassau, Cozumel and Puerto Costa Maya. I understand the need to change destinations but just last year we visited these ports. RCCL has a policy that ports can change but shouldn't a customer also be provided options particularly because of these storms? Talking with RCCL customer service was useless and they were certainly unsympathetic to our situation. Like many of those complaining this will be my final and last cruise on RCCL.

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Jeremy of Grand Bay, NB Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 12, 2017

No one at Royal Caribbean Corporate office is compassionate about people's situations and don't care what effects the hurricane has on being able to travel to and from the cruise port. In my case, my hotels, flights and everything else got canceled for Puerto Rico and Royal just said "Tough Luck, I'm still taking 50% of your fare". I'm never sailing with Royal again, you'd think they could make exceptions with the billions of dollars they make a year.

Wanda of Rochester, NY Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 10, 2017

We are scheduled to sail out of San Juan on 10/14/17, but due to of hurricane Maria, we tried cancelling the cruise and had no success. We were suppose to fly to PR several days prior to spend time with family and due to devastation in PR, we will not be able to do so. Our cruise itinerary changed several times and we are now going to be staying at the airport because there are no hotels available at this time. We were told by the travel agent that if we tried rescheduling flights for the same day of the cruise that our flights may get cancelled/miss our boat. We purchased insurance for this trip and unfortunately, it’s not worth it, as it doesn't cover natural disasters etc. unless Royal Caribbean makes that call to cancel the trip. We are their mercy, if we cancel the trip, we lose money, if they cancel then you get a full refund.

We also booked a hotel through Expedia (Vistas de San Juan) to find out that the place did not have electricity or running water like the Expedia representative told us. We called our credit card company to dispute those charges due to false information and our bank will be working diligently with us to have charges removed. I am originally from Puerto Rico, I was born there but raised in New York State. This crisis that happening there and surrounding islands break my heart.

We have had mixed feelings from the start to travel/go on a cruise because it hits close to home. But we will not give Royal Caribbean the satisfaction of keeping any of our hard earned money. This whole situation has been extremely stressful. I know that there will be others that are going through similar experiences, and will be joining us at the airport with no place to go until the day of the cruise, but I am hoping things get better going forward. I was hoping for a cancellation from Royal Caribbean, but in this day and age the mighty dollar rules.

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will of Brick, NJ Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 7, 2017

I am writing this to you to express my disappointment with Royal Caribbean passenger service support; and to ask for you to consider adding certain complementary services. We are sailing on the Anthem of the Sea, departing from Cape Liberty on Jan. 7 – Jan. 19, 2019 or similar (Bayonne) NJ; Reservation ID. This is to be our first cruise with Royal Caribbean; however, I have made many voyages on Norwegian Cruise Lines (NCL) and am a Latitudes Gold member. When making the reservation directly with Norwegian Caribbean client services, I was told that should there be any verified competitive offers prior to my departure, Royal Caribbean would compensate me with the same or similar complemental package. Little did I expect that your representatives would not honor that consignment.

I reserved a balcony stateroom for two at $3364.24 USD, first passenger at full price and the second passenger paying one half price. NO Cruise Discounts, NO Specials, NO onboard credit, just the cabin. However the Business organization, Cruise Only which represents other cruise consultants advertises on the Internet, “Experience the Anthem of the Sea in January cruise and receive (1) Book a Balcony and receive complimentary pre-paid gratuities (2) Up to $225 USD on-board credit (3) Balcony from $1267 USD” (versus RC where I paid $1449 USD, and ½ price for the second passenger). When compared to the other competitive advertised prices, booking directly with Royal Caribbean I received no “Specials“, no fare reduction, and for the cabin paid an additional $182 for one passenger plus $91 USD for the second passenger, all for the “privilege” of booking directly with Royal Caribbean.

When I asked passenger service for the “competitive specials” which we discussed, I was told by your client services representatives, Stephen and Brian, and Manager Samantha that Cruise Only purchases tickets at a reduced rate and therefore only they can run the specials - Royal Caribbean can’t. That just does not make sense. That is like saying one can buy an item cheaper from a retailer than from a manufacturer. Finally, we are both Senior Citizens and I am a Military Veteran. When I asked for the advertised reduced cabin cost that I read about on your Internet posting, I was told the half price on Balcony Cabin was a better discount, so therefore there was no additional rate reduction since only one was allowed.

Mr. Bayley, it did not state that on your Internet advertisements. I informed the same customer service reps that ALL cruise lines offer half price for the second occupant, therefore their offer was NOTHING “Special”. They did a lot of apologizing; however they did not appear to be sincere and caring nor willing to work with us. This uncompromising attitude will not foster goodwill or customer loyalty, or repeat business from a family of four who takes at least 2 cruises per year... Every year for the past several years. In closing, it would be considerate of you to complement our cruise by adding the competitive specials as did the other cruise consultants. This would definitely add our names to the Royal Caribbean Manifest on our future cruises and would remove our unfavorable feelings because of dealing with this ineptitude. I WONDER IF THESE ISSUES REALLY MAKE A DIFFERENCE... SHIPS ARE ALWAYS FILLED.

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Tammi of Ofallon, MO Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 6, 2017

First let me start with the pressure that is put on you when you arrive to the ship. Buy an Internet package, buy a drink package, buy a $200 dinner for 2... it goes on and on and on. We opted to buy an Internet package as we have kids at home & needed to be reachable. This was pointless. The internet only worked maybe 1/4 of the time. We brought this to the guest service desk & showed them the pictures as proof and they basically said sorry there was nothing they could do.

Next, the drink package. We were told we just needed one drink package for the two of us. As we received our bill we were each charged for the package at $287.92/piece. Again, brought this to guest services who basically said they wouldn't take the charge off. We also had $100 charge for towels on our bill, which is comical because we never used the towels - it rained every day we were at sea.

Next let's move onto the ports. 1st stop Nassau, Bahamas. The weather was horrible so all excursions were canceled. 2nd stop SHOULD have been Coco Cay Island (Royal Caribbeans private island) but due to weather we were unable to make it there, so we circled in the middle of the ocean for over 24 hours in the pouring rain. There was no room at the indoor pool because everyone was inside due to the weather. Why we couldn't have rerouted to another port is beyond me. 3rd stop - the lovely Key West Florida. This stop was originally taken off the itinerary and then added back on last minute. Key West was NOT rebuilt like they said.

We should have arrived to Key West by 8 am and didn't make it there until 11 am, which shortened our stay on the island - once again, horrible weather, so excursions were limited. Beach access was closed in every direction due to remnants of the hurricane. I am highly disappointed that they wouldn't have just canceled & refunded the money. This trip was worthless & a waste of money. Had I wanted to sit on a boat in the middle of a body of water, I would have taken my boat to the lake!

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Chris of Granite City, IL Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 6, 2017

I wanted to let everyone know just how ROYAL CARIBBEAN treats its repeat customers! You be the Judge! We have cruised with Royal Caribbean two other times. The first to the Caribbean and had a great time. Several years after that we cruised to Alaska and had a not so good time. My husband and I booked a cruise to the Virgin Islands on the Royal Caribbean Allure of the Sea for Sept 17 2017. I was looking forward to visiting St Thomas and St Maarten as I have always wanted to visit. However on Aug 17 we received an email stating that the itinerary had been changed and we would not sail to St Thomas. No definitive explanation.

I called the customer service number and was told the ship would not be able to make it to the island due to a time constraint. We later found out from a blog from a former cruise director, that the ship's third prop was not working and it did not have enough power to make the island in the time that was scheduled for the trip. Why advertise a cruise for places when you know you cannot reach it in time. Why sail without max power? As fate would have it, a week and 1/2 before our cruise, hurricane Irma was already cruising toward the islands. I called the customer service line and continually tracked the information on RC updates which resulted in absolutely no information.

Our trip plans, as always, was to drive from Granite City IL to Ft Lauderdale FL, our port of departure. My husband does not fly for personal reasons. As our date of departure loomed and Irma destroyed the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Haiti and Barbuda and was believed to hit the Florida Keys head on Sept 10th, hurricane Jose was marking a path through the Atlantic and Marie was threatening to destroy more of the Caribbean islands.

As the impact on Florida of Irma and with Maria on the way , both on the news and social media, I made multiple calls on multiple days to Royal Caribbean asking for a refund or credit for another cruise which resulted in either negative answer or a recording stating they were unavailable due to the weather. When I finally reached Royal Caribbean again on Sept 13th and spoke to Alex, I asked for a credit for a different cruise or a refund with no results. For full disclosure we did not purchase the RC insurance as we fully intended to arrive for the cruise. However I had been told by Royal Caribbean customer service on one of my many calls that due to the hurricane exceptions had been made to others.

What kind of sane person would make this trip to board a ship that is going nowhere they want to go? Flooding in Florida. Wide spread loss of power. No Gas or long lines up to several hours. The Governor of Florida said not to come to Florida. Bumper to Bumper traffic due to returning evacuees. We canceled our reservation as polite, civilized people would do, to let them know we would not be there to board. We also canceled our hotel room and the person there stated that many people have canceled due to the hurricane and aftermath.

We were contacted by Ruth from Royal Caribbean by phone and when we returned the call thinking she may be able to help us, but found she wanted us to schedule a new cruise. She transferred me to another department when she understood why I called her back, who then transferred me to the "Post Cruise" department. I spoke to Leila and again laid out our reasons for not being able to board but she told me that we would not be getting any of our money or any kind of credit, for a loss of $1804.00. She said she spoke to one of the managers who confirmed that but would not disclose their name when I asked. Who, in their right mind would board a ship and go out to sea with 2 hurricanes forming in the Atlantic and only 2 of 3 propellers working?? How can they out run the hurricanes?

The second itinerary changes were due to the destruction that occurred at the Virgin Islands which is understandable, and my prayers go out to all that were affected. However the ports Royal Caribbean chose are not the places I paid for. No option to re-book for another date was given. Royal Caribbean DOES NOT CARE of the hardships of people driving through Florida after Irma hit to make the cruise or lose all their money? DOES NOT CARE if people are stranded on the road without gas and nowhere to spend the night? Without power, the heat alone to someone with health condition would be a risk. They just happily pocket the money. I am sure we are not the only ones screwed by Royal Caribbean during this time. I would love to hear from other EX Royal Caribbean cruisers about their experiences.

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Paul of Murrumbateman, Other Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 2, 2017

We have booked and paid in full for a cruises with these people and now they have sent a email saying someone's paid to charter a large part of the cruise so we're not going, with our only option a shorter cruise. 3 months later after arguing with their so-called customer service for over 2 hours it's very clear they couldn't care less. I would highly recommend anyone thinking about cruising, don't go with Royal Caribbean.

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Ricardo of Joinville, Other Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 1, 2017

We purchased the Enchantment of the Seas cruise scheduled for departure on September 15 in Miami. Our flight from Sao Paulo to Miami would be on September 10, when Hurricane Irma would arrive in the city. The airport was closed and all airlines canceled their flights and it was not possible to rebook it for the next few days. Thus it was not possible to be in Miami on the departure date of the cruise. So far the only refund we did not get was Royal Caribbean. Car, hotel, etc. understood the situation and made all the cancellations without any kind of paperwork. Royal and R11 travel, responsible for cruise sales, have so far not given an official position on the case.

Barbara of Westerville, OH Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Sept. 29, 2017

We were delayed out of Paris to our Venice port pick up. We purchased air to sea with the cruise. They rebooked us to overnight in Venice and take a flight the next day to meet in Kotor. The customer service rep NINE, told us that a rep would be waiting for us in Venice when we landed, take us to a hotel, and pick us up the next morning to take us back to the airport. They would reimburse us any cost. This was supposedly recorded. We arrived in Venice, and no one was there. We called the cruise line, was hung up on 3 times and finally got someone who said, no one would be meeting us and to just figure it out, this is a direct quote! We called back and got another person who said they would rebook the flight for the next day, send an email confirmation of the flight and to get a hotel and we would be reimbursed.

When we didn't receive the email, we called back, we got someone who sent the flight email and said they booked us a hotel 29 kilometers away. A cab would have cost us 100 euro one way, which we didn't have. They couldn't give us the address to the hotel, finally someone at the airport looked up the address and told us that a bus could take us there for 8 euro each. We got on the bus, the driver only spoke Italian. We rode the bus for about 40 minutes, and saw him pass the hotel, we tried to stop. Nobody could understand us. A young college student spoke broken English and helped us talk to the bus driver. We were told there was no guarantee of transportation to the airport that early the next day and the best bet was to return to the airport. So they dropped us off at a bus station, with all our luggage.

We spent the next 45 minutes going back to the Marco Polo airport. After wandering around trying to talk to someone, we came upon a single room for 200 euro for the night, it was about a 2 mile walk from the airport. We caught the flight the next day... Finally at 5:30 pm we were on the ship. We went straight to customer service, where we were not pleasantly greeted and reminded that even though I was not there for the spa appointment the previous day they didn't usually give refunds and charged cancellation fees, we worked that out. We were assured that the credits had been forwarded to the right department for refunds but every day they had no word on the progress.

I finally called a cus rep back in the states from the ship and was told they were going to adjust the credits and when I asked for compensation for the customer service rep lying to us in Venice, the rep on the phone agreed that we should receive an onboard credit to renew customer faith, I handed the phone to the rep on board and she proceeded to argue with the rep on the phone that we would not be receiving a credit, and the rep on the phone hung up on her. We received nothing. We haven't been reimbursed as promised, we were left on our own in a country where we did not speak the language.

We bought the air to sea package because it stated we would have peace of mind and be protected against any delays. The cruise did offer us a small credit towards our next cruise. Why would I spend more money with someone who couldn't provide the promises the first time around. My father always said... Fool me once shame on you... Fool me twice, shame on me.

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Arlisa of Orlando, FL Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 29, 2017

Very unhappy with Royal Caribbean's tactics. We booked for a 7 day that included St. Maarten Puerto Rico and Haiti. Now with the hurricanes, we are going to Cozumel, Nassau and Costa Maya. We didn't pay for these cheaper ports and they aren't willing to apply even a 10% credit or let us go at a future date... We will never sail with RCCL again and we are telling everyone we know to avoid this cruise line. Hopefully enough people will complain so that'll feel the impact.

Scott of Broadview Heights, OH Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Sept. 28, 2017

I am booked to go to the Southern Caribbean in November. Given the devastation of the recent hurricanes I called to get a refund- nope!!! This company has no compassion- I lived through hurricane Andrew and have no interest in visiting hurricane ravaged islands. I hope the 50% you want to keep for a so called "voluntary" cancellation is worth it. Also, Palm Coast Travel out of Boca Raton, FL has provided no assistance! I guarantee the lack of compassion on this will hurt your numbers somewhere down the line. I will be waiting for you to do the right thing and provide a full refund.

Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines expert review by ConsumerAffairs

The Royal Caribbean Cruise Line was founded in 1968 and has since developed two unique destinations, Labadee and CocoCay; it also sails to numerous popular worldwide cruise destinations.

  • Adventure Ocean youth program: Adventure Ocean provides kid-friendly activities for babies, tweens and teens.

  • Flexible dining experience: Dining options range from casual dining venues to sophisticated meals in the dining hall.

  • Onboard casino: Gambling enthusiasts can take a seat at the Roulette table or slot machines while sailing to the next destination.

  • Performances: Movie fans can enjoy watching Tony award-winning performances.

  • Pre-sailing communication: Guests can take advantage of itinerary updates and online check-in; these updates let them know what is available to cut the wait time and when it's time to board the ship.

  • Best for: The Royal Caribbean liner is best for active adults and families.

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Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines Company Information

Company Name:
Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines
Year Founded:
1968
Address:
1080 Caribbean Way
City:
Miami
State/Province:
FL
Postal Code:
33132
Country:
United States
Phone:
(866) 562-7625
Website:
www.royalcaribbean.com