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Old 12-30-2012, 12:38 PM   #31
kcashner
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The issue of the serving staff needing "excellent" ratings has always been a problem. The teams with the highest ratings get preferred schedules, so it is important to them. However, I totally agree that the serving team should not be responsible for the food quality. In all honesty, most of the food on DCL is good but certainly not excellent. We've had better food on at least 2 other cruise lines. However, the DCL service typically is excellent. DCL provides no way for us to separate the two.

To the poster who asked about size of ships...we prefer the Magic. We liked the high tech of the Fantasy, but not the noise and the crowds. In fact, we recently canceled our on board booking on the Fantasy in large part because family didn't want to go on that ship--one even commented that if it had been on the Magic, that would be different. We do have 3 more Magics booked at this point. Most of the features that poster mentioned are available on both ships...and we're hoping that the midship detective agency will be added in the 2013 dry dock.
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Old 12-30-2012, 02:20 PM   #32
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I'm glad i'm not the only one!
I'm all for ensuring my kids know how lucky they are to lead the life they do and they are globally aware of the plight of others, but this was so out of the blue on our 'magical' trip that it kind of took the wind out of our sails for the end of our trip.
I completely agree with you - especially with an 8 year old!
Let's preserve the innocence as long as possible!
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Old 12-30-2012, 04:47 PM   #33
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this is a depressing thread for people approaching Dream cruise. Wish I had not read
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:01 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by WendyLovesPeter View Post
this is a depressing thread for people approaching Dream cruise. Wish I had not read
Don't let someone else's opinion detract from your excitement. I'm cruising on Wednesday and I am not depressed at all!
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:03 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WendyLovesPeter
this is a depressing thread for people approaching Dream cruise. Wish I had not read
Don't let it get you down! We've sailed on the Dream twice and would do it again. My first ever cruise was on the Dream, so she'll always have a special place in my heart.
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:10 PM   #36
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We have also sailed on the Dream twice and recently off the Fantasy. We have 2 Dream and 1 Fantasy booked for 2013. Opinions are just that - opinions. Go on the ship and form your own. Just go on the ship and enjoy yourself and make some nice memories for you and your family.
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:19 PM   #37
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this is a depressing thread for people approaching Dream cruise. Wish I had not read
Also remember that these are one tiny part of the whole experience. Although we had an uncomfortable moment the overall experience was amazing.
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:20 PM   #38
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I've been on the dream several times and the last one was a double dip. Each and every time it was great.
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:39 PM   #39
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people post with such conviction.... some of this is a matter of opinion.
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:40 PM   #40
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We were also on this cruise and our experience was great! This was our 7th cruise (we've cruised every ship and have been on 3+ doubled dips). Yes, areas can be crowded if you decide to participate at the peak time of any activity. Don't want a crowd? Visit the princesses on day 3,not day 1. Don't like a crowded elevator? Try another route. Shutters a nightmare? Don't look at your pics on the last night. Many times on this cruise I was alone in elevators, on Castaway Cay, on deck 13. It was quiet and relaxing. When it was busy and teenagers flocked around me, I changed my locale.

We cruised with a 13 and 17 year old. They both said it was the best cruise yet. Villains tonight is one of our favs (it assumes you do know the characters). For Christmas DCL surprised us and we received a holiday lithograph, Mickey chocolate, and a 2013 calendar in each room. Along with a cute snow man towel sculpture with a DCL Santa hat.

This was a wonderful cruise and I hope those of you about to take a Dream cruise enjoy the magic with out worrying about others experiences too much. I learned long ago to take everything with a grain of salt on the boards. It's whatever you make it. And hey I wish I was sitting in Royal Palace waiting on my glass on wine right now!
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Old 12-30-2012, 06:35 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WendyLovesPeter View Post
this is a depressing thread for people approaching Dream cruise. Wish I had not read
I agree with others: This should definitely not scare you off from booking on the Dream or Fantasy. Everyone's experiences are different. I personally loved the Dream and am going again at the end of January. I actually found the cruise to not be crowded at all--the only time it was noticeable was in the afternoon around the family and kid pools. Since it was cold during our trip and we have a pool at home, missing this part of the ship was not a big deal at all.
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Old 12-30-2012, 07:03 PM   #42
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this is a depressing thread for people approaching Dream cruise. Wish I had not read
You can have 10 people who sailed on the same ship/same sailing and have 10 different opinions. Don't let this hamper your excitement for your upcoming cruise!!

For those who think the ship is too big.....do not venture onto Royal Caribbean's Oasis or Allure of the Seas. Those ships are almost 2X the size of the Dream/Fantasy! That said.....we went on Oasis in 2010 and it was the most incredible cruise we have ever been on! Amazing ship....tons to do....just incredible!

Dream: 129,690 tonnage
Oasis: 225,282 tonnage
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Old 12-30-2012, 07:12 PM   #43
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One other thing to keep in mind - the OP was commenting on their experience on a Christmas cruise. Now, I know there are some who swear by the holiday cruises. But we did one on the Magic (a smaller ship, which I love) and it wasn't all that great! We had to be moved in the dining room because our servers were terrible! This is where a great head server comes in very handy. If something doesn't go right, you make sure that you communicate that to your servers, but you also inform the head server. If it still isnt' fixed the second night, they are already aware of the issue and can take more direct measures to fix the problem.

We were told on our Christmas cruise that many of the very experienced staff have earned the right to have Christmas off, so you get younger staff and newer crew members. Plus many of them may be away from their families at Christmas for the first time. It's just harder to be top form. Plus, those holiday cruises are normally completely sold out! That means there's no breathing space for the staff. And they normally add other special extras that aren't part of the normal routine, like Santa and gingerbread houses, etc. And the itineraries are normally slightly different too.

That's a lot of change for the crew, particularly a relatively inexperienced one, to handle without hiccups.

We won't cruise over Christmas again - partly because of the reality I painted above (on all the ships) - and partly because I just want to have Christmas at home with my own traditions.

But above all, use to the comment cards for both good comments and to recommend improvement. I have seen crew members given large bonuses because of passenger comments! They really are important to them. But I think it should be more than just a box. I often attach notes explaining exactly why I've given the rating I did. That's much more important than a simple number.
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Old 12-30-2012, 07:28 PM   #44
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I was on this cruise. It was a blast. I was not overwhelmed by the crowds. Like another poster said, you can chose to not follow the crowds and still have a great time. We stayed on board in Nassau and enjoyed the ship. We dined at Remy for brunch and dinner (no crowds there). We spent time sitting on the veranda listening to my cruise music play list, Aquaduck, bars, shows (golden mickeys, believe, wreck it ralph), Mixology, snorkeling on castaway...The list goes on. I am surprised at how much we were able to do in five days.

As for the "holiday" part of the cruise.....Disney sure made it special. To all the little gifts left in the room (as mentioned above), to the santa/reindeer ice sculpture, all of the holiday decorations, the man sized gingerbread house, the gingerbread decorating event, special main dining room meal, etc....I walked around in amazement half the time. I was really impressed on all of the character interaction my kids got. It seemed like every time we turned around....Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, a princess (Ariel actually walked my 2 year old down the hallway), Donald, Daisy, all of the characters all decked out in their Christmas outfits. Never a long wait (rarely more than a minute or two) for the kids to interact with them. It was great. Not sure if this is the norm or if they had extra appearances because it was Christmas. The extra 200 in OBC presented on Christmas morning in our stateroom was also a nice touch (ok, I am kidding about that one).

All in all, I would highly recommend a holiday cruise.
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Old 12-30-2012, 07:40 PM   #45
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As for the "holiday" part of the cruise.....Disney sure made it special. To all the little gifts left in the room (as mentioned above), to the santa/reindeer ice sculpture, all of the holiday decorations, the man sized gingerbread house, the gingerbread decorating event, special main dining room meal, etc....I walked around in amazement half the time.
Can't wait to get back on the Dream.
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