We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

Wigan, United...
Level Contributor
2,961 posts
139 reviews
MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

I will start this review by saying that we are very experienced cruisers. This however was a first for us - MSC. They have an excellent deal on at the moment where they "status match" you to the top tier level you have already made with any other cruiseline - hence we were status matched to their top tier - Black.

So, with that in mind, I shall proceed.......

The ship :

Fabulous! What a beauty. We were lucky enough to bag an Aft cabin and it was fantastic, spotless and well appointed. The public areas of the ship were never crowded despite its massive size - I believe there were 3500 passengers onboard for our sailing just after New Year.

Crew : The usual, Phillipino and Indian waiters and cabin stewards. Could not fault them, excellent indeed. Entertainment crew were from allover, the cruise director was British, so at least I could understand him haha

Entertainment / shows : Erm......dire? This ship caters for a lot of non English as a first language passengers ( more of that later ). As such it has singers who do not have English as a first language singers.. the shows in the main theatre...well if you like Queen, DON'T GO! Feddie Mercury sounded like a strangled cat, in a foreign accent. Michael Jackson show was billed as the best on the high seas... Michael could dance, his backing dancers could dance but could he sing? Nope! He lip synced.

The other shows were just not to our taste, or to the taste of a lot of the North American/English speaking other passengers - La Traviata, Paris night, Italian Classics night and a Frank Sinatra night.

Food : Very good, I am not a foodie but there was something for everyone and no complaints from our table. They still have the old fashioned and in my opinion out dated 2 sittings though - 6pm and 8.30pm. I much prefer anytime dining where you can just turn up.They do have a version of this but only if you pay for the "Wellness" experience, which is seriously annoying! The buffet was well set out, no long lines and a large variety of food to choose from, the pizza is superb indeed and pretty much available 24/7.

Perks: if you are lucky enough to get Black status then I must say MSC are up there with the best when it comes to perks.. they give you stuff all the time! It really was a little embarrassing to us as first timers - 3 bottles of champagne, 3 plates of chocolate strawberries, free speciality meals,free spa treatments, mouse mats, solid chocolate replicas of the ship ( a foot long! ), cocktail party with unlimited drinks, free pictures.. the list goes on. MSC have got 10/10 for that.

General comments: Passengers! I would guess that there are 30% native English speakers onboard MSC Divina. There are French, Germans, Italians and a LOT of Russians. I don't care much for Russians after this cruise, they are extremely rude and travel in very large groups – 50 or 60 strong. We switched dining tables twice in attempt to get away from them – they have children running about the dining room totally uncontrolled and do not care one little bit. The Maitre D was unwilling ( and possibly unable ) to get them to control their kids and as such the dining room experience was one best forgot.

To sum up : the ship and crew are outstanding. Do I think it appeals to the average UK/North American/Canadian/Australian cruiser? No. It is a big change from the Princesses, the Royal Caribbeans, NCL's and Carnivals of the word. A big change. MSC have the new ship MSC Seaside and they are actively marketing it to North Americans - we will monitor the reviews and look to see if they have more English orientated things on there. If they do, we will consider them again.

If they do not, we will be sticking to other cruiselines.

13 replies to this topic
Wales, United...
Destination Expert
for Bargain Travel, Cruises, Swansea, Cardiff, Carmarthenshire, Neath, Port Talbot
Level Contributor
72,848 posts
476 reviews
1. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

Thanks for a detailed and informative report, STeven. I had been looking forward to reading about your thoughts and experiences, and you have more or less confirmed what I'd concluded myself - that MSC isn't a product that I'd particularly hate or that I'd particularly enjoy.

I'm not going to rule them out, but it seems as if other lines will be a better fit for us.

Wigan, United...
Level Contributor
2,961 posts
139 reviews
2. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

I haven't ruled them out entirely. My other half has though.

Next one for us is Marella Celebration.....talk about one end of the spectrum to the other. From a mega ship like Divina to an aged old banger !

No such thing as a bad cruise though !

Blackburn, United...
Level Contributor
751 posts
91 reviews
3. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

Steven, very useful review. Things were sounding good regarding the Divina, until you got to the "out-dated" 2 sitting dining system. Having cruised only 3 times, all with NCL, we may have been interested in other lines, as NCL prices seem to have gone very high. However, we do like the anytime dining and I guess that MSC will not be on our possible list after all

Wigan, United...
Level Contributor
2,961 posts
139 reviews
4. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

Hi John,

NCL are doing their best to upset us. We used to be very loyal to them but their prices are sky high mate!

Have you tried Carnival? We love them. The problem is they have no ships over this side of the pond and doesn't look like they will be doing either. Its frustrating.

Wigan, United...
Level Contributor
2,961 posts
139 reviews
5. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

John... tried to send you a pm but i cant for some reason - can you send me one please and I will reply... you are going to want to hear this trust me!

St. Lucia
Destination Expert
for St. Lucia
Level Contributor
14,090 posts
10 reviews
6. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

Thanks Steve, for the great review. Always handy to read a review from someone whom you're familiar with their cruising style, as we are from this forum.

Interesting info, especially in regards to only traditional set dining, and the awesomeness of the Black card. We've done our status match and are Black cards also, so we're looking forward to checking them out.

Interesting positives and negatives - not enough negatives to turn us off, yet. We're still quite intrigued by them and are hoping to try Seaside this year. And hoping the Seaside reviews improve!!

Thanks for reviewing, much appreciated!

Punta Gorda, Florida
Level Contributor
722 posts
14 reviews
7. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

If you select the Aurea package (or Yacht Club), you have anytime dining.

What's wrong with Frank Sinatra?

Blackburn, United...
Level Contributor
751 posts
91 reviews
8. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

Steven, my AOL desk top has been disconnected by AOL and it looks like my ability to send a pm on Trip Advisor has been affected. I am currently struggling to get it switched back on. Trying to contact TA is not easy !

Wigan, United...
Level Contributor
2,961 posts
139 reviews
9. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

Reedprincess : I am hoping Seaside attracts more native English speaking passengers.. if she does we may go with MSC again.

Mafig : He was born 100 years ago. Died 20 years ago. His music is "old hat".

John: email me on nw_man@hotmail.com

Wales, United...
Destination Expert
for Bargain Travel, Cruises, Swansea, Cardiff, Carmarthenshire, Neath, Port Talbot
Level Contributor
72,848 posts
476 reviews
10. Re: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018

>>>No such thing as a bad cruise though !<<<

Couldn't agree more :-)

That said, the lack of flexible dining is a big negative for us.

Reply to: MSC Divina Review - 11 night Caribbean from Miami Jan 2018
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted