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Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
41 posts
111 reviews
58 helpful votes
Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

We booked on the Oasis for the Dec 17 through Dec 24 sailing from Fort Lauderdale to the eastern Caribbean. My brother and his family were also aboard.

Positives:

- The ship is beautiful.

- Seemed fairly clean.

- Lots of interesting art.

- Central Park is a great innovation and completely unique in our experience. The plants there all looked reasonably happy, quite an achievement in the middle of the ocean. It also seemed calm and peaceful at any time we walked through it.

- Our stateroom attendant was very friendly, sincere, and did a great job of keeping our cabin tidy.

- The cabin was nice, roomy enough and I really liked being able to store the suitcases under the bed. Flat screen TV allowed more room on the desk area. I also liked being able to keep up with our account charges – never had to go to Guest Services and stand in those lines! The air conditioning was effective, but kept the air too dry - we were coughing all the time from a dry throat. The closet was big enough but sliding the doors back and forth was a balancing act to keep from falling back on the bed. The room safe worked perfectly and we were able to fit our Nikon D5100 camera as well as wallets, passports, etc without any trouble. The bathroom was good, plenty of room in the circular shower, the hand-held shower was useful. Hair dryer provided. The balcony was good sized, no obstructions. The partition between balconies tended to bang in high winds, easily fixed with a bit of paper wadded up and stuck in the gap. Bed was comfortable. Bring a power strip if you want to plug in more than 1 thing at a time. The location was good, not too far from the elevator lobby or stairs, easy access to library one floor down. Being aft meant that anything happening at the front of the ship was a long walk.

- Tremendous number of options to keep kids busy, no matter what the age. The teenagers all seemed to be having a great time.

- Most of the staff was friendly. A few looked like they were really missing their families at holiday time. The "boys in blue" were uniformly friendly, smiling, and willing to chat a little.

- Oasis of Dreams, Come Fly with Me, and Frozen in Time shows were all excellent and well worth seeing.

- The Captain’s Corner presentation was very interesting and well done. The Captain has a wonderfully dry sense of humor! We appreciated his willingness to answer questions from the crowd for almost 45 minutes, running overtime.

- Very diverse group of cruisers. We heard quite a few different languages. Nice to be in that mix.

Negatives:

- The price. Our price was almost $300/person/day which seems very high.

- The crowds. The ship was probably completely sold out, being a holiday cruise and during school break. LOTS of families, kids of all ages, large groups moving around together. If there was a particular event you wanted to attend, it was crowded and you had to plan ahead. We solved that by only going at unpopular times but it was a bit annoying.

- The food. With a few exceptions, everything we ate was only average in quality and taste. We ate at the Windjammer and the Solarium Bistro; didn’t try the dining room or any of the surcharge restaurants. Solarium Bistro seemed to have better quality breakfast and lunches but the selection was much more limited. We did like the ambiance there. The Windjammer had a decent selection but usually was average in flavor and quality. We liked being able to pick our table and get our own drinks, etc. Sometimes it was very crowded but we usually were able to find a table without trouble, especially if we went aft. We did eat at the Park Café once, just to have the famous roast beef sandwiches. The sandwich is good, but be sure you go at off-peak times, the organization inside the restaurant was confusing and there is really very little space inside.

- The isolation from the sea. It’s actually pretty difficult to find outdoor space near the water. The promenade on deck 5 is the closest, but that was being very well used by runners and walkers, and the track was too narrow. Several times we were almost run over by these folks. We felt like the ship was designed to keep you indoors most of the time.

Ports:

Nassau, Bahamas – we just walked around in port. Since the Oasis is so big, they docked at the farthest pier, making it quite a hike from the ship to town, so be prepared. Hot. The port was very crowded with 4 other ships docked. The Straw Market had some interesting crafts, would have liked to buy a big floppy straw hat but packing it would have been problematic. Nice wood carvings too.

St. Thomas – our group took a taxi from the cruise port to Coral World. The 45-minute ride there was fun; the driver took us through some back roads to miss traffic in town. $10/person, in a van. Coral World is a small place but the fish seemed healthy. We enjoyed the various exhibits. It was $30 for the two of us; the taxi driver gave us a coupon. You can buy tickets online too, which is what my sister-in-law did. The drive back was also in a van, same price.

St. Martin – we waited a couple hours and then took a taxi to Marigot (about 35 minute drive). $7/person. Walked around the town a bit, shopped in the market (it was Wednesday) and bought some watercolors from a couple local artists. I was antsy to get back to the ship because I had read that the drive can take more than twice as long coming back. It ended up taking about an hour, mostly because there was an accident and traffic was backed up quite a bit. The trip back was $7/person again.

Summary:

The Oasis of the Seas is too big for us. There are amenities that we just won’t use – lots of surcharge restaurants, lots of kid-friendly venues that are useless to a couple without children, lots of shops with designer goods. There is too much indoor space, not enough outdoor space. We are glad to have sailed on her but we won’t be going back.

Happy to answer questions.

Oaxaca, Mexico
Level Contributor
14 posts
223 reviews
835 helpful votes
1. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

Mi familia y yo nos embarcamos para pasar Navidad, 8 en total con 3 cabinas, el barco completamente lleno, con 6,200 personas.

Lo peor, los lugares para cenar al final, ya que ponen los lugares conforme a las razas y a los LATINOS nos tocan la parte de atrás o el patio trasero, la mesa estaba a 4 minutos de la cocina y siempre llegaban frios los platos, el te, y así. Los meseros lo decían y esaban enojados de caminar tanto.

Cada noche el mesero imploraba que le llenáramos la encuesta con Excelente ya que si no perdería asientos y el dependía de estos para su salario, pero sin hacer nada para lograr Excelente, nunca preguntaba si queríamos café, te, o algo.

De 8, 3 se enfermaron de INFLUENZA, graves con fiebre, bajándonos del crucero y hoy salieron del hospital, no pueden controlar con un crucero a tope, tendremos que recurrir a medios legales ya que es un peligro que de 3 se hayan enfermado solo bajando del crucero.

El personal de fotos, tenía que cumplir cuotas de fotos así que te decían que te tomarían la foto aunque no quisieras. Pedimos el paquete digital y después de ir 3 veces y esperar una fila de una hora, no estuvo, como ya habíamos pagado, al momento de bajarnos tuvimos que regresar, pero todo el sinsabor y pérdida de tiempo de todos los que inocentemente habíamos pagado una cantidad de 500 dólares por el CD digital......

¿Es justo este trato?

O es la política de Royal Caribean de discriminar y selecionar por razas los lugares, o que se enferme la gente por no tener la capacidad de atender a 6,200 pasajeros.

Eramos miembros Gold de Royal Caribean pero después de esta discriminación

Edited: 12:05 am, January 02, 2012
Pittsburgh...
1 post
2. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

Just got back from my cruise. The ship was nice, but I missed half of it because I was sea sick the whole time. Even though there were no waves or storms at sea, this ship felt like it was going through a storm. There was a rumor that the Captain wouldn't turn on the stabilizers to save money. Well in that case, I want my money back, because I didn't save for a year to take this vacation to be sick the whole time. So disappointing. Even though the ship is very nice, I can't recommend it because either the Captain is crazy, RCCL is cheap, or they build the ship to rock too much.

Wigan, United...
Level Contributor
3,064 posts
140 reviews
149 helpful votes
3. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

You want your money back because you got sea sick?

There is more chance of me becoming the next pope.

Oaxaca, Mexico
Level Contributor
14 posts
223 reviews
835 helpful votes
4. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

To Royal Caribbean crew if you are sick doen't care, four of eight of my family gor influenza and the only thinf it cares is to get money from 5,200 people og the guests

Oaxaca, Mexico
Level Contributor
14 posts
223 reviews
835 helpful votes
5. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

To Royal Caribbean crew if you are sick doen't care, four of eight of my family gor influenza and the only thinf it cares is to get money from 5,200 people og the guests

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
Level Contributor
11,870 posts
167 reviews
218 helpful votes
6. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

Unfortunately, when people are living in close quarters in an air conditioned environment, sickness is, IMO, inevitable.

But what makes it worse is when people come aboard sick regardless of completing a health questionaire and not disclosing any illness that they may have.

That's who and why illnesses are spread on board ships - not the cruise lines fault at all.

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
Level Contributor
11,870 posts
167 reviews
218 helpful votes
7. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

Jen

if you got seasick and the weather was fine, perhaps you're like me and suffer from motion sickness - always have and probably always will.

It's certainly not the cruise line's fault and as for a refund ... absolutely no way would any cruise line give you a refund under the circumstances you described. And although I'm no mariner or engineer, the Captain would have no need to use stabilisers in seas as you've described - so the rumour you mentioned sounds like wishful thinking at best.

It doesn't put me off cruising, but I make sure we try to get a cabin around Deck 6-8 mid ships and that seems to help, as well as watching what I eat so as not to upset my system more than it already is !

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
Level Contributor
11,870 posts
167 reviews
218 helpful votes
8. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

Oops ... almost forgot !!

amyemilia

thanks for your cruise review, I'm sure many people will find it useful for future reference

Putney, Australia
Level Contributor
70 posts
33 reviews
19 helpful votes
9. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

I have read many reviews here and elsewhere . I am planning to go late June 2013 , but as it is the most expensive cruise besides New Years Eve , I am having second thoughts . It seems this cruise will be FULL and it worries me that with what you pay , value for money is diminished as you either wait continually or give up . The food situation seems confusing as there are many varied opinions . I am looking for a fun time for my 12 /16 yr olds ( like Club Med ) and a quite relaxing time for my wife and I , not stressfull waiting for service /tables . Has anyone travelled at peak time .? Also , I was told to book in Jan. as during the winter , the cruise may offer promotions .

thanks and any advice would be great !!!!

Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
41 posts
111 reviews
58 helpful votes
10. Re: Oasis of the Seas Review, Dec 17-24 2011

Tony, I think your teenagers will have a ball. The entertainment/fun options for them are really the highlight of the ship's offerings. If you stay away from the peak serving times, the buffet was fine. Refer to my initial post for the reviews of other eating places. In June, it will be HOT so be sure to plan accordingly.