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Selena O

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  • 13 Helpful votes
  • 1 Cruise review
  • 0 Cruises

MSC Fantasia

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  • Overall

    5
  • Food

    4
  • Entertainment

    3
  • Cabin

    5
  • Crew

    4
  • Price

    5
  • Value

    5
Dec 2015

"Expectations exceeded"

We have cruised quite a number of times as a family and tried several cruise lines. We booked our MSC Med cruise because the itinerary suited us and the price was excellent especially considering it was free for children. Once booked we had some reservations about the trip based on what we had read on the internet. Our concerns however, were unnecessary as we had a wonderful experience on board from the first moment to the last. We were thrilled with the standard of the cabin. We had a balcony cabin which certainly was more spacious than any we had occupied before. Our daughter used the foldout bed and it was so much easier being able to walk past the end of it to get out to the balcony. Previously we had needed to climb over and it wasn't easy at all. I could not fault the cleanliness of the ship overall and everything was in excellent condition. Whilst it might not suit everyone, we particularly enjoyed the multilingual nature of the ship and this never proved to be an issue when anything needed to be sorted out. We are not really cruisers who need entertaining so can't really comment on the standard of the entertainment. Maybe the only problem we had was that the teen club seemed to be virtually non existent and so our 12 year old, who had been looking forward to meeting some new foreign friends felt somewhat let down. However we made great use of the other facilities and felt the pool areas were excellent especially the indoor ones which we like to use in the evening when most of the passengers are at dinner or a show. We found the food to be sufficiently varied and of a good standard with loads of fresh fruit and Mediterranean cuisine which is what you would hope for on an Italian ship. There is a lot to choose from and I would recommend always doing a quick once around of the buffet before starting your selection as it is very comprehensive and in sections. We took a couple of tours which were extremely well run and the guides we had on both were some of the best we have experienced. They really added a lot to the adventure. We would certainly recommend MSC to travellers we know who have experience travelling already and know how things on a cruise ship operate already and enjoy being in a multicultural environment and we look forward to climbing aboard another in the near future. We just wish they were a bit closer to home

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  • Cruise Name: MSC Fantasia
  • Destination: Mediterranean
  • Sailed: September 2015
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Peter L

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  • 10 Helpful votes
  • 1 Cruise review
  • 0 Cruises

MSC Orchestra

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  • Overall

    4
  • Food

    5
  • Entertainment

    2
  • Cabin

    5
  • Crew

    5
  • Price

    5
  • Value

    5
Sep 2015

"Grand Voyage "

This is the second time we have travelled With MSC the first was on MSC Poscia a beautifull ship and it was well run by all crew entertainment was first class this time we travelled on MSC Orchestra on a 33 day cruise the main issues were the entertainment was very poor and did not cater for all age groups food in the buffet was very average and officers on board were very rude to English speaking passengers this was a completer contrast to our 19 day cruise onboard Poscia Both ships being Sister ships of the exact size and layout were of the finest quality and could not fault that in any way I would try MSC again but not the Orchestra as I think it was just the attitude on board that ship of all senior officers . Both ships had on very good thing in their favor was that the resturant staff being mostly from Bali or asian countries and were of the finest you could ever get service was first class on all levels my overall impression of the cruise line was that I would travel MSC AGAIN but not MSC Orchersta unless major changes had been made to officers who run the ship

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  • Cruise Name: MSC Orchestra
  • Destination: Repositioning
  • Sailed: February 2015
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Anonymous

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  • 0 Helpful votes
  • 0 Cruise reviews
  • 0 Cruises

MSC Poesia

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  • Overall

    4
  • Food

    5
  • Entertainment

    3
  • Cabin

    4
  • Crew

    3
  • Price

    4
  • Value

    5
Jul 2011

"The Great Escape?"

This was our first cruise and we had a ball! The ship is magnificent, the cabins, even with restricted view because of a lifeboat outside the window, was delightful. The food was fantastic and the crew directly involved with us (cabin crew and waiters) were top class. Having said this, there were a number of negatives which we would prefer to have avoided. The first was the many hours it took for the crew to get us on board. The departure hall at Kiev was a disaster area and all the MSC staff involved were unfriendly and short tempered. We had taken the website advice of arranging our boarding passes on the net but this made not one iota of difference - it took us hours to get on board - it was a total shambles! The next was the aggressiveness of the security staff who policed the re-boarding after the excursions. We had to be x-rayed to make sure we were not carrying any alcohol on board. MSC makes such a huge profit selling beer, wine and spirits that they jealously guard their monopoly over supply. All alcohol is impounded when one boards and is only returned the night before final disembarkation. The security staff seemed to be seconded from the Mossad and one had the impression that they were forbidden to smile. Talking about the alcohol on board, notwithstanding the fact that one was expected to tip around Euro12 per day per person (more about this later) one was slugged a hefty 15% on all purchases. One was encouraged to buy alcohol packs of beer, wines and mineral water at exorbitant prices. The wine quality was below middle of the range but the prices were exceedingly high. Another gripe was that there is no indoor cinema and if one wants to watch a movie on one's cabin TV set, one is charged an unrealistic price. One would think that on a ship this size, that they could provide a cinema. I guess they make too much selling the movies to the cabins. The TV itself becomes almost non-existent when crossing the Atlantic. MSC has not yet invested in satellite TV, or if they have, it doesn't work. Having briefly raised the subject of tipping, I must mention that MSC get their passengers to pay their crew. It is quite blatant. One is required to agree to have one's ship-board account debited by an amount of around Euro12 per person per day. On a 21 day cruise this adds up to a lot of money. At the same time, one is advised that one is not allowed to give any tips. We, along with an extremely large number of other passengers, wrote to the chief purser and advised him that we declined permission to add these gratuities to our account. After a few reminders, we finally received a letter from the Accounts Department confirming that no gratuities would be debited to our account. This opened the way to us making our own minds up as to who we were going to tip and this certainly included the cabin crew and the table waiters who were outstanding. The rest of the crew were mediocre and went about their business in a very impersonal manner. Also, every time there were announcements, including commentary in the theatre, this was done in five languages and this was extremely tiresome. Our biggest gripe was the excursions. We strongly recommend that you DO NOT book any excursions with MSC. It all started with the connection between Hamburg and Kiel. MSC was charging around $90 per person for the journey whereas the public bus, virtually from door to door, cost Euro17 for the two of us. Fortunately we had booked some of our excursions ourselves over the internet and these were a great success at a fraction of the price. Unfortunately we also bought some through MSC. One of these in particular was a disaster - the trip to Rouen from Le Havre. Our bus left the ship almost three hours late and by the time we arrived at Rouen, our guide tried to fit a whole day excursion into two hours. The result was disastrous and resulted in many complaints, in writing, to MSC. After an absolute riot at the purser's counter, MSC agreed, near the end of the cruise, to refund a small amount of the excursion cost to the unhappy participants of that particular excursion. As the amount of the refund was an insult, we refused to accept it and MSC said they could do nothing more as they were only the agents of the tour company. They suggested we write to MSC when we returned home to Australia to see if we could get any where with their Australian representatives from whom we had purchased the excursion. We have, since then, tried to contact them directly and through our Travel Agent. MSC has completely ignored 'phoned messages, the Travel Agent and five letters from us. This was a disgusting dereliction of their responsibility to us and we are still extremely unhappy with our treatment. Having vented these complaints above, I must end by saying that our overall impression was nevertheless very good and we would sail with them again. We are now, however, more informed of what to avoid. We would have three tips, though: 1. Do make sure that you book your excursions from home, over the internet. Much cheaper, more flexible and much more fun. 2. Give them written advices to the effect that they may not add gratuities to your account, notwithstanding anything that you will find in the small print. They cannot enforce this. This gives you the freedom to give gratuities where you feel they have been earned. 2. Unless you really enjoy lots of alcohol and money is no object to you, try to avoid their booze packs. Rather sneak some alcohol aboard at the end of one of your excursions, in a Coke bottle! We look forward, with great anticipation, to our next cruise - even if it is with MSC!

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  • Cruise Name: MSC Poesia
  • Destination: Trans Atlantic
  • Sailed: September 2010
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Patricia W

Contributor

  • 2 Helpful votes
  • 1 Cruise review
  • 1 Cruises

MSC Fantasia

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  • Overall

    4
  • Food

    4
  • Entertainment

    3
  • Cabin

    4
  • Crew

    5
  • Price

    4
  • Value

    4
Jan 2017

"MSC Fantasia"

The crew on the MSC Fantasia were brilliant. The management / Head Office were disappointing. Our pre-cruise packages were not recorded and had to fight for them. One package never got fulfilled. We were the first cruise for MSC through the Suez Canal, Red Sea and the Arabian Sea. More information about the ports would have been useful. Crete and Rhodes were well worth the visit. As were the 'shoulder' season, Rhodes opened up for the MSC Fantasia. Suez Canal was everything we had hope and more. Very interesting to see one side is sand and nothing else and the other side green and houses along the canal. Oman was very interesting as well. Salalah was sand and desert, Muscat was mountainous - will go back to Muscat some day. Loved Dubai - need at least 3-4 days to see everything properly. The 'shoulder' season meant it wasn't too hot either. Evening desert dune riding is a must for the ones who like adventure!!! Sand sliding in a 4x4 is exciting with dinner in a camp. Doha and Bahrain are interesting cities too. The old city meeting the modern city - how they built some of their buildings is a mystery. Well worth a visit.

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  • Cruise Name: MSC Fantasia
  • Destination: Mediterranean
  • Sailed: November 2016
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Anonymous

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  • 0 Helpful votes
  • 0 Cruise reviews
  • 0 Cruises

MSC Fantasia

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  • Overall

    5
  • Food

    4
  • Entertainment

    5
  • Cabin

    4
  • Crew

    4
  • Price

    3
  • Value

    3
Jul 2011

"Fantastic Fantasia!"

We were unsure of what was ahead of us on this MSC Mediterranean cruise.The website looked amazing and actually lived up to expectation,even exceeded it in many ways.The ship was immence and dazzlingly white against the cool blue ocean dock at Civitavecchia. It was unseasonally warm for late March and we were tired and dreading the registration and check-in onto this floating city,but it was such a streamline and stress free experience,very professional and slick,that we were in our cabin in no time at all.The cabin was roomy and comfortable, the bathroom pristine,well lite and surprisingly spacious.Loads of storage cupboards and draws and our cabin steward "Martin",a friendly Balanese guy gave us a warm greeting and became indispensible to us throughout the cruise.Finding our way around the Fantasia was like a daily marathon and did wonders for our fitness....all those different decks to climb up and down every day!There were also banks of lifts,but it was quicker and more fun to climb the stairs on our adventuring outings.The meals became daily entertainment....people watching and most seemed intent on getting every euro's worth of food they could at every sitting....no diets on this cruise..pile it on!!The food itself was varied and quite nice..a lovelly Ethnic food counter and their hamburgers would give Mackers a run for their money. .Cleanliness and sanitation were obviously a high priority and it showed.The many coffee bars on board kept my husband happy whilst I found the aerobic and latin dance classes great fun.The Spa was first class and beautiful to experience...especially the hot lava rock massage!You couldn't tell that the ship was moving most of the time, it was so smooth and calm.The staff seemed to be mainly Balanese,apart from the officers and reception people and we quickly developed a great admiration for the multi-linguists who constantly aided and explained things to the passengers.Every notification,both in print ie the daily newspaper, and over the PA was in several languages..quite a feat of organisation.All in all it was a great trip and we will be repeating an MSC cruise in the near future.The entertainment was different every evening and of a very high standard in the theater,but the ship itself was an unending source of wonder...sparkling crystal stairways and lifts, plush and luxurious lounges.We came away thoroughly rested and refreshed,and just a little bit sad that it had to end.

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  • Cruise Name: MSC Fantasia
  • Destination: Mediterranean
  • Sailed: March 2010
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