3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Took this cruise because the price was right. My issue of contention was the food in the windjammer and MDR. First off, the coffee was the worst i have ever had on the numerous cruises I have taken with CCL and RCCL. The food took too long ... Read More
Took this cruise because the price was right. My issue of contention was the food in the windjammer and MDR. First off, the coffee was the worst i have ever had on the numerous cruises I have taken with CCL and RCCL. The food took too long to be brougt to the table and no matter how many times i reminded the server that I wanted or had ordered a beverage, I neither got the chance to order and or received the beverage after meal had been consumed. The servers were friendly and pleasant. Don't know if they had staff shortages but the wait times were bad. The pool deck during the day had zero fun vibe. I might as well have been at a pool in a gated community. There was a band in Boleros whose song selection was extremely limited. I can honestly say that CCL with whom I also cruise has better bands, better, cruise directors, better comedians and better DJ's. The 70's party on the promenade was awesome. I did get a kick out of the traveling piano player. The 80's party was mediocre. Terrible song selection. Grease was good as was the ice skating show. Cruise Director Jamie while quite the dancer and mc/game show host was barely around. He was dynamic when hosting Quest and leading the 70's party. Apart from that,he was not heard from nor seen. The cabin steward was AWESOME. Can't say enough about her. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
After taking close to 30 cruises I can honestly say that this was the worst food and service I have ever experienced at sea. We were a group of 12, and every night we ate in the main dining room multiple people either sent back what they ... Read More
After taking close to 30 cruises I can honestly say that this was the worst food and service I have ever experienced at sea. We were a group of 12, and every night we ate in the main dining room multiple people either sent back what they ordered or simply left it on their plate after taking only one or two bites. The service at dinner was not good, and at breakfast and lunch in the main dining room it as atrocious. I am not sure what the main ingredient was in the Johnny Rockets hamburger, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't beef. Desserts are clearly made with vegetable shortening, not butter. The pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving did not have any pumpkin in it. The shrimp cocktail was served at room temperature as was the cannoli in the Italian restaurant, which was filled at least a day before they served it. The entire food experience is poorly managed and there is a complete lack of competence from top to bottom. The public men's bathrooms all smell of urine and have either water or urine on the floors. In four days on board I only saw them being cleaned once. Compare that with Celebrity, where they are constantly being cleaned. The worst part of the cruise was having the director of food operations continue to argue with me after I pointed out the problems we were having. On the plus side, both Grease and the Ice Show were entertaining, and the cabin steward was great (if not for these 2 factors I would have rated them 0 stars. And to top it off, one of us came home with either bedbug bites or scabies! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Sailed Independence of the Seas Nov 22 through Nov 26 to Cozumel Mexico out of Ft. Lauderdale. PROS: What a beautiful ship. Staff was lovely and went out of their way to make us feel comfortable. They had a great sense of humor and ... Read More
Sailed Independence of the Seas Nov 22 through Nov 26 to Cozumel Mexico out of Ft. Lauderdale. PROS: What a beautiful ship. Staff was lovely and went out of their way to make us feel comfortable. They had a great sense of humor and took the time to get to know you individually. They learned your names which is amazing. Activities were great and they had tons to do. Embarkation and Disembarkation both went smoothly. Food was delicious and they had A LOT of variety. The sushi at Izumi (extra fee) was AMAZING. We did the sushi making class on board (extra fee). Not only did they teach us step by step how to make sushi and roll it; they also gave us recipe cards for all the sushi we made and we got to eat ALL of it. They even provides us with a certificate for completing the sushi class. The Bottomless mimosa and galley brunch tour on board (extra fee) was AMAZING and the brunch items included lobster, shrimp, sushi from Izumi, eggs Benedict, burgers, bbq wings, salmon and other things. All of it was delicious. MIMOSAS GALLORE!!!! YUM! The night club in the sky lounge on the 14th floor was Booming with great music. Awesome atmosphere and the DJ played various songs to meet a variety of cultural backgrounds. The casino was clean and had a variety of slot machines. The restrooms were ALWAYS clean. The drinks were delicious. Do yourself a favor and spend the few extra bucks and GET THE DRINK PACKAGE!!! If you plan on getting alcohol it is well worth the money and it will pay for itself in a day or two considering the prices of individual drinks range from $9.50 to $14. The beverage package gives you access to sodas and specialty coffees also and you get a cup to take home. Dining was difficult because everything was so good. The meals on Deck 5 at the main dining room were delicious. The Windjammer on deck 11 was delicious and offered a ton of variety. Remember to wash your hands before Mr. Washy Washy sings you to death and beats you with the handsoap LOL. He was also AMAZING. So I guess it all depends on whether you want to sit down or have a variety of choices. Our room attendant Ava was also AMAZING. We had a leak in our toilet when it flushed on day 1. Called maintenance and within 3 minutes they were knocking on our door. They came in and in a matter of 5 minutes had it fixed. The maintenance staff was AMAZING. Go to the art gallery. They have amazing works of art up for auction. And for a great laugh go to the comedy shows and The Quest games how on the last night of cruising. CONS: The excursion we went on was the all day Tulum Ruins and beach break. For future cruises I say pass on this tour. It was wonderful and the tour guides were friendly. However, we barely had any time to shop at Tulum as the tour ran all day, the tour guide was doing his job (talking away) and we had to get back on the boat. There were so many great shops I missed out on sadly. Lesson learned for me. We literally had 15 minutes to shop upon returning to port before having to get back on the ship. Next time shorter tour so we can have time to shop. The bartenders are BUSY ALL THE TIME. They seem to be short staffed in that area and could benefit for hiring a few more. They are however very friendly and if you treat them the same and have patience they hook you up with great service. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
The ship appeared cleaner, more modern and spacious. The staff made this trip frustrating and uneventful. Food items were always at a shortage as were staff in attaining drinks as promised with the drink package. The pressure sales ... Read More
The ship appeared cleaner, more modern and spacious. The staff made this trip frustrating and uneventful. Food items were always at a shortage as were staff in attaining drinks as promised with the drink package. The pressure sales personnel in labidee were a an noxious and frightening. Made racist comments regarding “white people” when purchases were not made. In Jamaica, the bus broke down and staff had promised some restitution and to notify the ship of our late arrival, none were done. Very disappointing. The game shows were entertaining as were the variety shows and grease. The cruise director was friendly and interactive. The bartenders would ignore you as you were standing there and make you wait 15 minutes before obtaining an order. Overall, our group of 24 was very unimpressed and frustrated. We don’t think we will be considering royal Caribbean for our next annual family cruise adventure trip. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
As a family of 7 we had 3 separate cabins with balcony. It was great to have the balcony rooms to experience the ship saying into towards the islands/locations we were visiting. The cabins were comfortable for sleeping. We could have done ... Read More
As a family of 7 we had 3 separate cabins with balcony. It was great to have the balcony rooms to experience the ship saying into towards the islands/locations we were visiting. The cabins were comfortable for sleeping. We could have done with more storage space for our 2 weeks work of clothes. The dining experience was fantastic thanks to the 2 at tentative waiters in the Main Dining room. In fact it was so good we didn't bother booking any speciality restaurants. Quality and variety of the food was superb. Our friendly waiters who must be mention Tri, and Neftali made our cruise special. We were entertained every evening after our meal by Tri who would have us trying to work out table tricks using all kinds of dining objects like cutlery, napkins cocktail sticks and glasses. I cannot find anytjing negative to say about the main dining room experience. The shows in the theatre were very good particularly Grease and Darren Day. The facilities on the ship were also excellent great splash area and pool for kids. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
In the past five years we have done two transatlantic cruises per year on the Navigator of the Seas. It was not available (supposedly being refurbished - hopefully better than the supposed refurbishment they just completed on the ... Read More
In the past five years we have done two transatlantic cruises per year on the Navigator of the Seas. It was not available (supposedly being refurbished - hopefully better than the supposed refurbishment they just completed on the Independence of the Seas). 1. The food in the main Dining room was mediocre at best. Length of time for overall service resulted in missing some of the evening entertainment. Much of the time the food was barely warm. 2. Our cabin attendant – took two days to get tissues after they had been requested, we had to ask for soap to use by the sink to wash our hands (never got any but fortunately I did have some in my toilet articles), we were in a disabled cabin and so asked for a wedge for the door for us to use but each time he gave us one it would disappear the next time he came. 3. Despite being told that this ship had been recently refurbished it was obvious that the carpet in our cabin had been patched together. Our last night on board my toe caught in one of the areas where the carpet was coming apart causing me to fall injuring my shoulder. 4. The trivia’s were held in the Schooner Bar which has very limited access for people in wheelchairs or scooters. 5. Only one shore excursion was available for disabled people. Inexcusable! 6. We never could get a run down of our charges on our TV screen so we had to wait in line at Customer Service (very long lines most of the time because of the number of people onboard). 7. Space for the disabled in the Theatre were reserved only on deck 3 rather than on 3 and 4 like on the Navigator. Lots of disabled people on board. 8. Trying to get through the Royal Promenade was extremely difficult with all of the tables for the different shops selling things and with the amount of people it became even more of a bottleneck. The definition of Promenade is a leisurely walk taken for pleasure, to display one’s finery, etc; a public place for such a walk as an avenue, the deck of a ship, etc. There was no chance of a relaxing or leisurely walk along the “Promenade” as busy as it was most of the morning, afternoon and evening. Zumba on the Promenade – seriously! I / We feel that Royal Caribbean was ill equipped to deal with the amount of people on board. This includes the wait for the elevators – same amount of elevators as on the Navigator but substantially more people on board and a considerable number of people on board were disabled. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
This is the first time we went T/A and at the price we found it great value. I booked through Cruise 1st and i had not one problem. Embarkation at Southampton was no problem. Busy but only to be expected.The Indy has a wow factor when you ... Read More
This is the first time we went T/A and at the price we found it great value. I booked through Cruise 1st and i had not one problem. Embarkation at Southampton was no problem. Busy but only to be expected.The Indy has a wow factor when you board and is a very nice ship. We had an outside cabin on deck 2 cabin 6260 and it was very nice and also very quite.D.D. our cabin stewart was excellent. Food on board was very good in all the restaurants and Chops Grill speciality dining was out of this world. Plenty of food and plenty to drink and the service was excellent.Service throughout this cruise was 10 out of 10. Ship was spotlessly clean. Just a couple of gripes. The ship was pretty could for the first few days. It was cold outside but you could have hung beef in side. When the weather improved it was too busy outside. They actually had too many sunbeds together and it was difficult to walk about. We new the ship would be busy on ship days. The entertainment was the biggest downfall. It was really poor. The headline acts were terrible and also there was no booking system to get in. It was a free for all. The bands playing around the ship were poor. Same songs every night. A good piano player how would be better to play and not sing. The parties on the promenade were good fun but packed. I think the cruise director Ken was to blame as he did not seem to be listening to any of these acts. The ice skating was good. Still a very good cruise and a great experience on a T/A cruise. I would do it again no problem. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
Having booked this cruise with friends I didn't look at the reviews until after. Well I can tell you that initially myself and another in our party started to get bad vibes from the reviews. However, seriously I found the whole experience ... Read More
Having booked this cruise with friends I didn't look at the reviews until after. Well I can tell you that initially myself and another in our party started to get bad vibes from the reviews. However, seriously I found the whole experience to be amazing and often reflected on how any little things were done to exceed expectations. ALL the staff were so friendly and genuinely helpful, they would go out of their way often to help. We always found a table to eat in Windjammer and the food here was exceptional. My wife and her friends often find it difficult to find food they like as being originally from China, they like to eat plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit and these were in abundance. We initially had concerns as to 'how many standard drinks were included on the standard package' but they were plenty and free 24hrs. Each evening we had a meal in the main dining room. 2 waiters for 3 tables with a total of 14 guest to look after, the service and food quality was amazing. All the staff took a real delight in talking to you and taking an interest but not to a point of intrusion. Each day we received our copy of 'Compass' a guide to the many activities going on each and everyday, it truly was jam packed. From dance lessons, french lessons, Bingo many health things including chinese herbs and too many to mention and so diverse. I saw mention of 'not enough sunbeds' yet I found dozens spare all the time, Ok maybe not right up to the pool edge but certainly plenty. Plenty of pool towels too and my wife certainly put the walking track to good use as did another of our party. Everything was immaculately clean too, so far beyond many of the hotels I've stayed in and the room made up twice a day. In the evenings different folded towel animals were left in the room made up by the room attendants. I can honestly say what a credit all the staff were and we are looking to book our next cruise. Don't be put off by reviews as we nearly were find out like us for yourself. We also enjoyed some top class shows that were of London show quality with top acts. If there was a negative, and I'm sure this is outside RC control was the onward transfer where we had to queue for far too long with no organization as to where to go. Recovering from an accident and having a few mobility problems my wife had to fetch me a wheelchair before I collapsed. I'm sure this was not Royal Caribbean but this was a real problem. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
I want start of by saying I suffer from alot of chronic illness, Fibromyalgia being one so I'm hoping this review will help anyone else who has similar issues! We arrived at the port at 11 and we were on the ship within 20 mins! We ... Read More
I want start of by saying I suffer from alot of chronic illness, Fibromyalgia being one so I'm hoping this review will help anyone else who has similar issues! We arrived at the port at 11 and we were on the ship within 20 mins! We were surprised when we first arrived to find we had Ken Jones as our CD as we were supposed to have Tim Connor. Considering Ken had been brought on only a week before at last minute and he didn't know the ship he didn't a brilliant job! The 9 sea days were good but long. This is our 3rd transatlantic but we've never had so many sea days in a row. I made alot of use of the library on the first few days. I love that it is now in a room of its own as it is quieter although so passengers used it as a general place to chat which was annoying. There were a few activities on board, scavenger hunts, napkin folding ect, I've done these on previous cruises so didn't feel the need to attend. We did go to Rock Britannia which was led but our Activities Manager Elizabeth and I really enjoyed that aswell as the 70s night which was also really good (this was led by Ken!) They also did an Olympus Rocks parade and an 80s night but I didn't go to these. Grease was amazing and I highly recommend seeing it, the girl who played Rizzo blew me away! We also saw Once Upon a Time, it's my favourite show on Indy but I must have seen it around 7 times now and it is getting a little stale! Darren Day was another headliner and he was incredible! We saw both his evening show and his matinee! I personally couldn't do any of the sports activities but my family did the rockwall and the trampolines and loved them! We are in the windjammer every night and the food was always lovely, hot and there was so much choice! We tried Johnny Rockets for the first time, the staff were very accommodating and changed my meal when I found the first one too spicy but I don't think it's something I'd go back and try. Fish and Ships was really good, the cod was the best cod I've had in a long time! Our first port was St Marteen, we walked round to the town and had a little look around, it's so amazing how quickly theyve managed to get back on their feet after the hurricane. I took the waterbus back to the ship after a couple of hours as it was getting too hot for me but my family stayed and swam in the sea. Next we went to St Thomas where we booked an excursion so we could get through immigration quicker! Our immigration time was 6:20am, and we were through within an hour! Our excursion was a boat trip into the main town. The boat trip itself was worth the money but I wasn't impressed with the town, I'm guessing if you like diamonds ect it's good but it wasn't our sort of thing. We only spent 2 hours there before getting the boat back. We had a look around the shops at the port and picked up a few suvioners. I then got back on the boat while my family headed to Megan's bay. Next was San Juan. Again we only stayed near the port, we walked up to Marshalls and a little further on we found a street that was full of colourful umbrellas above it, it was gorgeous and totally worth seeing! We again didn't stay long after that, went to a few shops and then headed back. We have done these 3 ports before (some twice!) So we didn't feel the need to spend to much time on land! Our last port was Labadee, which is basically paradise! I've never seen anywhere so beautiful! It's always been on my bucket list to swim in the Caribbean sea and I achieved that here. The water was perfect, just the right temperature! That's pretty much all I did in Labadee, I like to think the salt of the sea helped my joint pains. My Mum who is braver than me did the zip wire and she loved every second of it! A couple more things of the ship, we had an aft balcony cabin on deck 6. It was still roomy with 3 of us and the balcony was huge! Joseph our state room attendant couldn't do enough for us! The escape room is a must, absolutely loved doing that, I love anything that makes me brain think/work. The only small issue we had on board was with the photographers. They lost a few of our photos and then we had a photo taken at the Labadee sign, it was the one photo we all wanted but the only one which was perfectly lined up with the whole sign in ect had someone else in it who wasn't in our party and the photographers couldn't seem to grasp this. Sadly we didn't end up buying any photos because the only one we really wanted was spoilt. The departure process was a mess! They were letting the next cruise on in the same place as we were all queing up to get on coaches ect, the port was rammed! We had a transfer with Royal to our hotel but noone seemed to know where we were meant to go to get this transfer! We asked one member of the Intercruise staff who was at the port, she mumbled something and when we asked her to repeat it she told us she wasn't going to as we must be stupid!! 2 hours we waited at the port being told to go in all different places, all which were wrong! In the end we gave up and ended up paying $70 for a taxi to our hotel in Miami! Overall though we had a fantastic time, we love Royal Caribbean and we love how the staff treat you like family when you are on board! We have decided though we wouldn't do a transatlantic this way again though. It's alot easier to fly out and cruise back than it is to cruise out and fly back! Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
We are a retired couple who enjoy cruising, so decided to cross the Atlantic to Florida, via the Caribbean, to enjoy some sunshine & heat. Embarking was straightforward, although there seemed to a be lot of people who apparently ... Read More
We are a retired couple who enjoy cruising, so decided to cross the Atlantic to Florida, via the Caribbean, to enjoy some sunshine & heat. Embarking was straightforward, although there seemed to a be lot of people who apparently don't realise that the crew have a hard job getting the ship ready for pax. We actually saw from our hotel room, people arriving, expecting to board the ship at 09.15 ! The ship was very clean & well maintained. The additions will obviously appeal to families, but it was easy to avoid the top area. Being a TA cruise, we didn't expect to see any school aged children, but as usual, we were wrong. Captain Iv runs a very good ship, & the ambiance proved that the crew like him as much as the passengers do ! He is a very affable person, who interacts with people very well. Orlando, F&B Manager on our cruise, was very approachable & we gladly congratulated him, & his team, on the food presentation & quality. Regardless where, or when we ate, the food was consistently good. Our stateroom was maintained very well by Bhisom, who was aware from the start, that we are early risers, so the room was cleaned by the time we returned from breakfast. The first few days proved challenging, weather wise, but the Captain deviated from the usual course, to avoid the main part of the adverse weather, but the conditions were still quite rough. The health lectures were very interesting, conducted by an American Cardiologist, Dr K Sheikh, who was entertaining as well as being very informative. We were delighted that the casino was smoke free for the entire cruise, but smoking is still allowed on one side of deck 11, although we could avoid it, if we remembered ! The food in both Chops Grille & Giovanni's was as usual, excellent, but as I stated earlier, the food was good, regardless where we ate, including Barefoot beach club on Labadee. The only downside.....the vast numbers of Diamond & Diamond Plus members onboard. It meant that the Olive or Twist Lounge was filled to overflowing every evening, long before 5pm when the event commenced. Suites & Pinnacle guests could use the lovely airy Suite lounge, but as there is no bar set up in there, the servers had to prepare drinks either in the pantry, or at the bar in the main lounge. Wine was easy for them to serve, but mixed drinks took a while to get. We think that the C&A society will have to rethink their policy as it's too easy to reach D & DP status. It used to be that D's had an event consisting of wine, beer & Cava, now, those who have 70 points enjoy almost the same as those who have 700 !! Janice, lead bartender in the Crows Nest, Olive or Twist Lounge is delightful. She was always upbeat, friendly & eager to please. She ran an excellent bar, & was constantly aware people were waiting to be served. All crew we encountered were delightful, & those with whom we have cruised before, remembered us....for whatever reason, but we didn't ask !! We like the ID, but like the itineraries of other ships within the fleet, so it will be a while before we are back on her. Our experience on RCCL ships has always been enjoyable, & whenever we hear people complain about food, or the standard of cleanliness onboard, we have to shake our heads & wonder what kind of lifestyle they lead. It's easy to opt for healthy, nutritious food. On our return home, we weigh ourselves, & find that we have not gained weight. It's not because we haven't eaten or drunk anything, but have chosen wisely, exercised, & followed a regime which is sustainable, no matter where we are. Waste of food is abhorrent to us, but many plates we saw being removed from tables had food untouched by the person who had put it there. In a buffet situation, it's easy to opt for small portions, then return if more food is required. Some of the crew come from countries where food is not easy to obtain, so it must be depressing / annoying for them to see such unnecessary waste. Much media advertising coverage is given to plastic waste, but surely food waste should also be highlighted. Here endeth my rant !! Read Less
Independence of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 3.0 3.8
Entertainment 5.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.2
Family 5.0 4.2
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.5
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 3.7
Rates N/A 3.8

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