2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
We choose this cruise as a first cruise and the choice of Ports and Excursions. The Ship has some lovely vintage public areas ( Main bar and Dining Rooms) which had echoes of a more glamorous era. The alternative dining facility was ... Read More
We choose this cruise as a first cruise and the choice of Ports and Excursions. The Ship has some lovely vintage public areas ( Main bar and Dining Rooms) which had echoes of a more glamorous era. The alternative dining facility was reminiscent of a staff canteen/airport. Other Bars on board are more intimate. The Casino sports 8 slot machines and a home size casino table. There are 2 pools largely for cooling off. There was usually enough space on deck at some point to stare at the Sea but the usual bagging sunbeds at dawn persisted daily on our trip with no visible intervention. Perhaps its a secret sport? Who knows as the winners are rarely seen. The cruise we were on was unable to dock due high seas/no parking which resulted in 2 extra days at Sea. Thomson Dream is not really set up for this interruption as on Board entertainment included Bingo, Out of date black and white comedy videos and some form of flattened darts. This for 1500 people lacked imagination. It can't be that unusual for the Ship to be required to entertain for the day? The Cover bands at Night were excellent but the Comedy MC type turn was characterized by a lack of confidence and wit.I appreciate comedy is personal but he was the only person laughing. Food was plentiful and varied but not cuisine. Service almost always excellent. Disembarkation in Port was flawless but arrival on Montego Bay at the start of the trip would have been comical if not so irritating. We were herded on to a bus and given a form to complete whilst the bus was moving and then processed by land side staff largely by shouting and hand signals. Didn't work that well with folk just off a 10 hour flight. The Shore Excursions were great value and enjoyable. I will cruise again but possibly not with Thomson unless I am short of a Bingo fix Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
We usually cruise with P & 0 or Royal Carribean. We chose this cruise because it called into Havana. The ship felt dated and needs some attention. The itinerary was changed round and port arrival times changed which meant prebooked ... Read More
We usually cruise with P & 0 or Royal Carribean. We chose this cruise because it called into Havana. The ship felt dated and needs some attention. The itinerary was changed round and port arrival times changed which meant prebooked excursions had to be changed. Freedom Dining was ok and food was ok but have to say the choice from the buffet was limited. Beware there is a charge for safety deposit in you cabin which is ridiculous another way to make money which is wrong of Thomson to do this. Cabin was directly underneath the show theatre and very very noisy, no peace or relaxation at all when in the cabin as practising for the shows all afternoon and then the actual show in the evening till 23:30. Swimming pool on deck 11 needs some attention as damaged. We took the All Inclusive option but not everything included, most cocktails were but if you had one that used Absolute in it instead of Smirnoff then you were charged. Don't know why it's brand specific. Don't think l'll choose Thomson again. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
We booked this all inclusive holiday as something special do on my 70th birthday. A trip to the Caribbean taking in the Panama canal and Havana amongst other places has always been something we had wanted to do. First impressions ... Read More
We booked this all inclusive holiday as something special do on my 70th birthday. A trip to the Caribbean taking in the Panama canal and Havana amongst other places has always been something we had wanted to do. First impressions The transfer from the airport to the ship was not without its problems, Thomson really do need to organise themselves. We were given a form to fill out on the place which we duly completed only to be given another form at the airport that we had to fill out on the move in a queue, very frustrating. We finally got to the transfer bus which was very old and uncomfortable. Fortunately the transfer to the ship was fairly short. On arrival at the cruise terminal things were much more customer focused and we were whisked through to the ship very quickly. The ship was small by today's standards but from the outside it looked in reasonable condition. All inclusive not On our way through the terminal we had our first experience of this holiday not being what we would call all inclusive, we were asked to pay £24.00 rent for the safe in our cabin, this was not the only extra cost. When we arrived at our cabin there was a mini bar, a small fridge packed with various drinks. I was just about to open a beer after the long journey when I noticed a small slip of paper, to my surprise you had to pay for any of the contents in the fridge once again not all inclusive. My next surprise was the high cost of an internet connection £90.00 for 14 days and the space purchased was only enough for a few emails. Finally quite a number of drinks were not included in our package though some were subsidised, this spoiled the all inclusive experience and it seemed a bit petty to us. Ship customer experience The Negatives The ship was built in 1986 and had benefitted from various refits over the years. We had booked one of the few balcony cabins, it was quite small compared to other cruise liners we have experienced with very little storage space for hanging cloths but we coped. On our first sea day we had a late breakfast and went exploring, the promenade deck was packed with sun beds so much so that they blocked the thoroughfare in some places and were potentially trip hazards, this situation was poorly managed or not managed at all by the crew. Our walk took in the areas around the swimming pools, it was then obvious why the promenade deck was over crowded by sun beds, it was our impression there were just too many for a ship of this capacity. The swimming pools were filled with cold sea water daily, they were small and by today's standards not very accessible due to the low level of the water. On sea days there were not enough activities and the ones there were restricted like playing bowls in a circulation route (lift lobby), a potential accident waiting to happen.   The positives Our cabin was immaculately cleaned and maintained daily by our Steward Ryan. We opted for waiter service for breakfast and dinner, the food was some of the best we have ever had on a cruise being really well presented and served in a timely manner. The waiting staff were very efficient and friendly and there was no shortage of drinks served with the meals. There were a number of short shows to watch on a daily basis, the entertainment team presented these very professionally and they were amusing to watch. As I previously stated the ship was in our opinion very tired and overdue for replacement but it seemed maintained to a high standard not withstanding this it was built in 1986 and there are many other ships that are newer boasting much more circulation space and amenities in the open deck areas. We flew out and returned to Birmingham UK, apart from small problems our flights and transfers were very easy, the Dreamliner is a great plane and we had plenty of room. The food was good for aeroplane food and both flights were problem free. In summary Apart from all the problems we would use Thomson again as they have been good in the past and our experience this time was not totally negative but we would not consider them if we went on another cruise. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
We didn’t have the best of starts to our Dream Cruise, a seven hour delay leaving Gatwick which resulted in us losing our first afternoon and evening on board. Transfer from Airport to Ship was the worst I have experienced in five ... Read More
We didn’t have the best of starts to our Dream Cruise, a seven hour delay leaving Gatwick which resulted in us losing our first afternoon and evening on board. Transfer from Airport to Ship was the worst I have experienced in five cruises. No immigration / customs forms provided on the flight, these needed filled in before joining a large queue in a very dated dusty corridor to the carpark. Once documents were handed in you joined another queue for a very old fashioned and dirty mini bus / small coach to the port. Kept seated on a very cramped and hot bus for over 20 minutes while second part of customs procedure took place, then had to wait longer for a safety briefing. Then joined another long queue to complete embarkation and collect cabin details. I paid for pre-booking of a cabin and selected my cabin eleven months prior to joining the ship, this didn’t guarantee my cabin as I was advised it had been double booked!!! This happened to many people on the ship, with one couple moved from deck nine to deck five for the same reason. £50 compensation was received and pre-booking fee returned. Unlike previous Cruise’s we were not shown to our cabin on first arrival but left to seek it out ourselves. First impressions of the ship were good, it’s an old ship (31 years), and is warn and tired in places but it is well maintained and kept really clean by the crew. Although not the cabin reserved, our cabin was very comfortable and spacious (deck 6), just like the rest of the ship it was warn in places and if you look hard enough you can find fault. That said we were very happy for the time we used it, the cabin attendant was not obtrusive but kept the cabin very clean and tidy. No towel animals but as many clean and fresh towels as was required. Dining: The Orion Restaurant, on deck four, provided excellent quality food for breakfast and evening meals with mostly good service, drinks service was quite slow during the evenings and non-existent on one night. They have a policy of open dining and my wife preferred for us to just eat as a couple, this appeared to frustrate the restaurant manager as the cruise progressed. The self-service restaurants (decks 9 & 11) also provided good quality breakfasts, with a great selection. The quality of the lunch and evening meals was not great but there was always plenty of choice. Bars: All bars provided good service and selection of drinks, sometimes service was a little slower than you would expect but not a real issue as we were on holiday relaxing. Our favourite bar was Tides, which was quieter than the others. Entertainment was good, show time team working hard to provide a different show each night. Live entertainment in the other bars was also good, the calypso steel drummer appeared to only know four songs and never played the drum, none the less he was entertaining. Medusa lounge had all the holiday camp type fun and games and audience participation. Deck space was hard to find when the ship was at sea, as with hotels people get up early to reserve their beds, ship information states that towels will be removed after 45 minutes but this never happened. Guest relations: I had the misfortune of speaking to Louise (Guest Relations) about our flight delay, her response was astonishing and unsatisfactory. "Planes are mechanical, they breakdown, you have to learn to live with it, there is nothing I can do" she snapped. Also, "I can’t advise on compensation, I have never been delayed. Nothing to do with me so I can't help”. She left the ship after one week, if she hasn't left the company she should do. Destinations team: This team were very frustrating, they had no knowledge of the ports of call other than the information provided on the daily sheet. Often providing inaccurate information. Handled the cancellation of a pre-booked trip very badly and basically told me if I hadn’t booked the trip on the ship they couldn’t help. The guest relation Lady (week one) and the destination team just did not care about their customers Ships Schedule: The dates and locations changed with no notice whatsoever, even though the route was re-planned four month ago. This caused a real problem for people who had arranged and paid for trip and excursions independently. Be warned! The schedule was the complete reverse of what was advertised at the time of booking. All in all we had a nice cruise, but not the Dream we expected. I don’t think we will be cruising with Thomson again. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary, the brochure description and travel agent recommendations to celebrate a special birthday. Dreamliner flight was fine, except for the poor entertainment offer which made the 9 hour flight ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary, the brochure description and travel agent recommendations to celebrate a special birthday. Dreamliner flight was fine, except for the poor entertainment offer which made the 9 hour flight appear much longer. Food was acceptable quality. On the return flight, the food and staff were less good and the cabin was extremely hot. It was only on landing that we were told that an air conditioning motor had stopped working, poor communication. Montego Bay airport and transfer was a joke, kept waiting in an airless corridor for buses to transport to the ship, then even longer in the port hall waiting for passes etc. Also the, as we found out later, every present photographers, who throughout the 2 weeks pestered us to have photographs taken in corridors and any spare space they could find. Such an annoyance. Food in the buffet restaurants was better in Sirens than in Lido which as per other reviews, was often dirty and messy. Orion restaurant was far better and we were lucky to have excellent service from Noel, his assistant Ryan and Raymond the sommelier. We called them the dream team. Breakfast was fine except that cold toast was brought to the table the minute you sat down, not really acceptable, however this was a minor issue. Our cabin was spotless, however it was very dated, not the refurbished vessel we had been sold! In one area of the ship there was a constant smell of sewage so we were glad that was not near our cabin. Captain Richard was a lovely man and his announcements were always good. Broadway lounge entertainment was of a good standard and the costumes were excellent. Entertainment in other areas of the ship were very overpowering for those, like us, who wished to relax quietly. Very "Hi-de-hi" quizzes and bingo, great for those who like it but not for all guests, hence there should have been other areas available without the need to move to avoid. Bar staff were mixed, some were excellent, others less good. Thank goodness for the "Dream News" which displayed the opening times of bars/restaurants as these varied from day to day. We did several excursions, however weather did spoil some of these, no-one's fault, but overall of an acceptable standard, although in Cozumel, our bus, along with others was taken to the "main shopping area" where we had 45 minutes, we were dropped outside a restaurant which it was obvious later had been "recommended" by the tour company. Very few shops were open and it was rather a run down area, however on re-boarding the bus and driving further along the road, there were some lovely busy squares full of shops, cafes etc, obviously the actual main shopping district, but we did not have enough time to walk there or visit. Very disappointing. The itinerary of our trip was changed from the original one booked and there was no mention of this prior to our departure. Again this was a common thread amongst guests' conversations. Like other reviewers, we would have welcomed a deck plan as it took several days to orientate ourselves. Main negatives: Cost of Wi-Fi - extortionate, should be free in this day and age. Having to pay for water (despite being all-inclusive). Tea and coffee facilities provided in rooms but not water! Drinks in Explorers' Lounge were not included in our All Inclusive Drinks Package, which we paid extra for, as only "Premium" guests could access these for free (additional cost of £10 per day if we wished to access this!), but we could pay a surcharge if we wished, £1.20 per cup! Lack of one quiet lounge inside for inclement weather or just to sit and relax, we spent a lot of time moving from lounge to lounge to get away from the poor duos performing on the various stages, surely one lounge could be kept for entertainment leaving another clear for quiet guests. Not all lounges serving drinks throughout the day and I feel that they should all have been available at all times. Couldn't just sit in one lounge and get a drink without moving at some time. This would have been invaluable when the weather was so bad on several days. Persistent photographers in your face, trying to drum up business. Lack of implementation of dress code policy, many guests wearing shorts of an evening in the bar areas. Overall, we were very, very disappointed, as were numerous guests who expressed similar comments to ours. Thomson have a lot of work to do to bring this cruise up to an acceptable standard. Luxury holidays in other parts of the world are far better quality and value. We will never cruise again following this very disappointing experience. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
I knew when booking this was not a luxury liner but I was still very disappointed at the state of this ship On embarkation we were met by a tired looking carpets even more tired slow lifts and a bad smell I had taken my daughters on ... Read More
I knew when booking this was not a luxury liner but I was still very disappointed at the state of this ship On embarkation we were met by a tired looking carpets even more tired slow lifts and a bad smell I had taken my daughters on their first cruise and was frankly embarressed . I could not believe the pool areas both of which are untidy and shabby They have put WOODEN boards around the pools which are discoloured and look appalling I dont know why but the clientele on this cruise all seem like the extras on the comedy Benidorm and it honestly felt more like the Solanna Hotel at times Bare fat bellies and tattoos abound. They had even brought their own towel pegs to reserve their sunbeds about 6am along with their bingo dabbers!! Good points were nice cabin, bit old fashioned , we had a premium deluxe but beware the 9th deck cabins are above the main entertainment bar the music ends around midnight so dont book these if you go to bed early. Comfy bed and kept spotlessly clean by our cabin steward Staff all seemed happy and worked very hard Good range of food choice in the restaurants Destination services staff were rubbish and didnt know what they were talking about. entertainment was very average, nice theatre though! The itinerary includes Havana which was great in the day but a bit seedy at night and more expensive than I expected 18 cuban dollars for 4 weak mojitos the beach is a 30 or 20 dollar taxi ride away depending on your driver Big disappointment was Cozumel mexico there is nothing here, downtown is rubbish just full of tat shops and expensive silver jewelrey dont know why the boats dock here Expensive taxi ride to the beach 60 USD but theres nothing much else to see So if you like looking at fat bellies tattoos and hairy legs (thats just the women!) and playing bingo book a thomson cruise, I will stick to P and O !! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
We have travelled on Thompson cruises many times and love the entertainment the food and service is always excellent and we find them good value. This time I needed my wheelchair for distances and rough seas. I found there were many ... Read More
We have travelled on Thompson cruises many times and love the entertainment the food and service is always excellent and we find them good value. This time I needed my wheelchair for distances and rough seas. I found there were many problems to overcome at the airport due to the help desk being a distance from the airport entrance and the Thompson desk the furthest away. Birmingham airport is inclined and sprawling not good when you have to wheel yourself until you can get rid of the cases.at the desk Thompson representatives were excellent so we're the air hostesses. Please note you have to use airport wheelchairs on arrival make sure you have a room number label and name on your chair it goes straight to the ship. On board the room was very spacious we do not need a special disability room but make sure you can climb in a bath for showers I needed to ask for a bath mat. The food and service was as usual of a high standard in the main restaurant but by the end of the holiday I was annoyed in the outside eating areas as they were so few staff tables were not cleared up to an hour after being finished with and the tables were rarely wiped clean. The staff did not point out the gel machines and many cruisers never used them The entertainment was as usual very varied and of a high standard. The show team produced some spectacular shows and worked very hard often doing further shows after the nightly spectacle On this cruise we had not realised that in 14 days there were 4 days at sea and several short visits making half day cruising. All this was made worse because there was nothing for us to do no films lectures or extra musical things to listen too. There was however 1 short play which we enjoyed Smokers are well catered for having ALL of one side of the ship which happened to be the sunny side of the ship most days causing non smokers less choice for sun beds. To make it worse smoking or vaping rules were not adhered to and vaping was allowed everywhere in the lounges dining room and swimming pools. Being in a wheelchair my husband had to help me down the steps to exit the ship we actually complained to the service manager because no one helped my husband to bring the wheelchair down and once the man at the entrance was cross and shouted at me to move when I had no chair and my walking stick was in the scanner I could not therefore move safely. After this they were better but still one staff member was miserable and unhelpful. I think maybe the staff who usually are full of fun and laughter either did not get on with each other ( there was more of a nationality mix) or were unhappy. We wondered if the ship was going to be removed from the fleet and they were worried or the number of staff employed had been drastically reduced. My final personal opinion is that I will have to seriously consider whether Thompson will be my choice for a cruise in the future if they are cutting everything down to the bone. The airport in Jamaica on the way home was difficult. The staff were rude and sharp my husband had to show all his credit cards and I was left ages in the chair waiting to be scanned. I finally was desperate for the toilet so my husband wheeled me to a handicapped toilet and I was told someone was in it. We waited 15 minutes until I was so bad my husband had to help me in to use an ordinary one where the floor was slippy and full of women. How embarrassing. In the mean time a young fit member of airport staff came out of the disabled toilet and when challenged accused us as having a problem with her because she was black!! There was no one to speak to and complain but we did leave a letter of complaint with the information desk. Surprise surprise no one has contacted us. Good luck to any people out there like me who have to suffer a disability and the humiliation that goes with it but I would like to say there were wonderful people on board the ship that were so kind and helpful to both my husband and myself and certainly the women in the airport is not a true representative of mankind Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
Flew off on the dream liner end December 16 - 11 January 2017 which was a nice flight and had no issues on arrival Montego bay and the 15 minute bus journey to the ship. Once on board everything was nice, we knew it was an old ship so were ... Read More
Flew off on the dream liner end December 16 - 11 January 2017 which was a nice flight and had no issues on arrival Montego bay and the 15 minute bus journey to the ship. Once on board everything was nice, we knew it was an old ship so were well prepared for that. The cabin was great apart from the little tiny television screwed to the dressing table right at the other end of the cabin but we weren't there to watch tv so not a big issue. The food looked great and plentiful however I found on most occasions that it was only lukewarm and sometimes just plain cold. I didn't like the breakfast as it was horrible foreign bread/toast with a sweet and chewy texture and the sausages cheap and horrible pork yuk. The waiter service restaurants were just ok, Food looked amazing and was your upmarket gourmet food but I personally just didn't like it much. I found the entertainment dismal and the same throughout the entire two weeks. Some guy with turrets syndrome playing the tin drums was nice and entertaining on the first night and not so bad on the second night and half way through the cruise I was getting pretty fed up. The singers were quite good but very dreary and on occasions so dreary that I fell asleep. Be up early to get a sunbed otherwise you won't get one. There is a 45 minute rule on the ship that if you don't return to your sunbed that your towel will be removed but nobody actually there to check or remove towels so there was always plenty of arguments around the pool. Back to the entertainment, it was pretty much dull. The team in the Theater were brilliant and I thoroughly enjoyed all the theater entertainment and can not find fault with it. However entertainment on the decks was tired and boring. You make the most of it but in reality you'd rather be reading a good book with some ear plugs in. The shore excursion - Oh god what a load of rubbish. I wanted to be out on UTV's, buggies, jeeps, jet skies, Fun stuff. There wasn't any of that. We did book an exciting scuba diving and speed boat excursion but on arrival the sea was so rough that the scuba diving part was cancelled and then the speedboat was cut short because a women did her back in after the boat hit a large wave. Most excursion are tours to places. We went to Dunns river falls in Jamaica which was a good day out but it took nearly three hours to get there and four to come back because of the traffic. We booked the express excursion thinking express meant straight there and back again. NO we still stopped for 45 minutes at some over priced bar and restaurant place in the middle of nothingness. Ridicules, why would they call it Dunn falls express if it's not. Ok so then the worst place on earth I have ever been to, Havana CUBA. The ship docked right on the edge of the town, it took over an hour to get through immigration, the miserable people! Then I walked straight out of the immigration building and into a pile of dog poo. My brand new trainers that I kept especially for what I thought was going to be a beautiful place. Havana stank, dogs everywhere, potholes, roadworks, buildings falling apart. exhaust fumes choking the life from your lungs. We actually had an over night in this dump and when we went to find a restaurant they didn't have half of what was on the menu. We went from restaurant to restaurant trying to find something nice to eat only to be told in every single place that only a few things on the menu were available. There is no phone signal and no WiFi service. Horrible place and I do not recommend that you go there. We even paid good money on an excursion to the square where Former Prime Minister Fidel Castro held his speeches and it was just a big car park. I expected to find at least a market or something. There is nothing in Havana, nothing but crap and toxic fumes and rip-off taxi drivers. Coming to the end of our cruise and the weather worsened and we had a 36 hour journey back over to Jamaica in the rough sea! I have never felt so sick in my life so it did not help to be told our flight back to Manchester had been cancelled. Stuck in Jamaica for another day might seem like a bonus but no! Thomson arranged for hotels. First we had to queue for an hour to get through immigration and then we had to queue for hours and wait our turn to get on a coach to our hotel. Then because of the awful Montego Bay traffic (Nothing like I have ever witnessed or witness again)took us over an hour to get to the hotel. I was just knackered but the hotel was like Butlins for the Americans, loud and noisy children running up and down and screaming. OMG! I hardly slept a wink. Had arranged a 4am wake up call as we were getting picked up for the airport at 6am but just as I stepped out from the stupidly slow shower a note come under the door informing us that our new flight had been delayed for three hours. Thomson had arranged for a Spanish Airline to take us home, this airline did not care for us as customers and I was actually seated at one end of the aircraft and my partner at the other. When we complained they said there was nothing the could do. How ridiculous. There was all sorts of commotion on the plane as people, disabled folk and old people struggled to swap seats to be with their partners. Absolutely disgraceful in my opinion. So not the best cruise we have ever been on. We were on the ship for New year. The dullest New year party EVER. Just no excitement. I think they specialize for people who are over 100 years old and need to get with the times. Even 70+ year old people know how to party these days. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
This was going to be our first cruise so we had an open mind to see if we enjoyed it. When we booked, we were looking forward to the holiday of a lifetime and paid £200 each for 7 day "All Inclusive" drinks package so we were ... Read More
This was going to be our first cruise so we had an open mind to see if we enjoyed it. When we booked, we were looking forward to the holiday of a lifetime and paid £200 each for 7 day "All Inclusive" drinks package so we were quite annoyed to find that when we got on board that the "All Inclusive" package wasn't as all inclusive as we thought, ...... The "All Inclusive" package allows you to have the cheap "unbranded" spirits, the house Red or White wines and a small selection of cheap cocktails. If you want to have branded spirits and access to all the bar facilities you will be offered an "Upgrade" to the "Premium All Inclusive" package at another £70 per person for the week. Given that this was supposed to be the ultimate "All Inclusive" option, and this was a very special holiday for us, we paid for the "Premium" package. But this is still not all inclusive, be warned, a bottle of wine in the restaurant is EXTRA, perhaps I misunderstood the concept of "All Inclusive", but no, wait.... it gets better, the mini bar in your cabin has a good selection of drinks, but these are owned by "House Keeping" and they aren't part of the "All Inclusive" package. The Cruise is nothing to write home about, the excursions we booked were reasonably priced, we were due to visit Honduras, Belize, Costa Maya and Cozumel.... The ports are all standard tourist traps, same expensive junk with a different name on it. The quality of food is generally poor, quite a lot of options but badly cooked. There was Norovirus on the ship while we were there. If the weather is bad, your trapped inside the ship, its not very nice but your stuck with it. The two swimming pools are tiny, not enough room to swim in. The extra services such as the Spa are what you expect to pay for but a word of caution, there are too many people trying to amuse themselves during peak times so spa bookings tend to be full unless you want a spa treatment at 8 in the morning. You can't use an iron onboard, all laundry and ironing has to be done by the ships laundry, at an extra charge. The best part of our holiday was at the Riu Montego Bay. In our opinion, don't do the cruise at all, spend 2 weeks in Jamaica. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
This was a cruise anticipated to get our new year off to a great star but New Year's Eve on board was rather flat. There was the opportunity to celebrate two but nothing happened or was scheduled in the intinerary of events on the ... Read More
This was a cruise anticipated to get our new year off to a great star but New Year's Eve on board was rather flat. There was the opportunity to celebrate two but nothing happened or was scheduled in the intinerary of events on the night to acknowledge Big Ben striking in the UK earlier than Caribbean time ...some cruises seize the opportunity to celebrate both...Midnight arrived on board and with the Cruise director prompting us all to look at the funnel something BIG was anticipated but nothing mareialised other than a few balloons and poppers and a glass of fizzy plonk...this was an opportunity missed by the cruise director and his team to do something spectacular as other ships do. The Broadway Theatre hosts evening shows and the singers and dancers are the best on board...they are very good. Red Syndicate are not the best whilst Two Intense are much better. David Morgan the ships Steel Drummer has had better days and suggestion was that he ended up on the Dream as being the best of what was left. His songs are repetitive and he is a clock watcher... The cruise was not without its share of adverse weather, often arriving at short notice but nothing was in place to entertain passengers unable to take advantage of glorious sunshine and now housed indoors. Ample opportunity existed for a daytime dance/disco in the waters edge...maybe a beach party theme...Carribbean shirts and all that...something to get the party started so to speak...no...entertainment was lacking and the teams leader lacked imagination and creativity on these occasions. Same with sail always..they were flat too. These opinions were shared by many and not expressed in isolation. Those who had been on the Dream before felt the previous Director was better at creating the party atmosphere this cruise lacked. Accommodation was good. Housekeeping was of a high standard, towels changed on demand. Staff very friendly. Food was ok but has been better during a previous cruise on this ship. The Orion restaurant was very good and again staff attentive to detail. The Lido and Sirens restaurants are the buffet ones and selection was ok, nothing spectacular and presentation very basic. Waiter service in the public areas and entertainment venues is extremely slow. The waiters appear to take several orders at once, return to the bar with their orders and then you wait for all drinks to be prepared before they return to your table. This practice is preferred on board in favour of you visiting the bar to get your own drinks. I can appreciate the need to observe safety especially when the ship is rocking and many carrying glasses so this is something Thomsons need remain conscious of and ensure sufficient resources are available to prepare and distribute drinks in a much shorter time. Reception is another area that was often criticised. These staff have been selected for their ability to say No and to defend the many issues presented by the on board internet access and its excessive costs. Using this facility is very expensive and you need to ensure you fully understand its operation or be prepared for an inflated charge should you not log off correctly or its failure be apportioned to yourself. One cannot assume the Caribbean is where the sunshines continuously! This is not the case and it was confirmed during our cruise. Rain is essential to the beautiful scenery around you but downpours do occur so be prepared...some of lengthy durations too..Weather conditions quickly change and sailing time can encounter rough seas as was the case towards the end of our cruise. It deteriorated soon after leaving Havana and followed us back to Montrgo Bay via Cozomel where the sea was so rough excursions returning to the ship via a ferry needed to transfer back to the ship via a side access. The swell was such that the ferry was bobbing up and down excessively and transfer carried huge risks. It also delayed our departure by a couple of hours at least. The first Three stops on our cruise saw us drop into Roatan, Honduras, Belize and then Costa Maya where each port was like a shopping mall and the major stores existed at each. Unfortunately the ships Port shopping guide was given time to host presentations specific to items one could purchase on our travels and promoting the stores that carried Thomson recommendations! Something the port shopping Advisor omitted from his presentation is the fact purchases in Mexican governed countries benefit from a shopping and tourism money back initiative! An initiative that has been in place for some time that sees just short of 9% ....yes 9%... of total monetary spend on jewellery, diamonds and watches returned to your account within 60 days of purchase! ...so my advice is make your purchase in COZOMEL...not Roatan...not Belize...COZOMEL also has other outlets than those Thomsons promote that sell watch brands like Rolex and RADO too in addition to those available in Diamonds International... I am of the view we all want to save money and it's better in our pocket than theirs..my only thought as to why this initiative escapes reference during presentations is that it would compromise sales at ports where this initiative does not exist. Check it out...it's a GOVERNMENT initiative...and not something outlets subsidise. You stand to save a lot of money or lose it depending on place of purchase but ultimately it's your call. If you have any questions you think I may be able to help you with then please don't hesitate to ask. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
On the whole we enjoyed the two week cruise doing Panama Canal and Cuban Fusion. What has spoilt it really are a couple of things We booked the Panama Canal excursion through Thomson at a cost of about £90 each. We had no idea that ... Read More
On the whole we enjoyed the two week cruise doing Panama Canal and Cuban Fusion. What has spoilt it really are a couple of things We booked the Panama Canal excursion through Thomson at a cost of about £90 each. We had no idea that there was a two hour bus trip before we reached the point of joining the ferry to go through the canal. We then had to wait in the bus for authority from the Port Authority to go on ferry. We got going and there were cold drinks readily available, quite a poor lunch for what ended up being a VERY long day. We got to the first lock but had to wait about two hours for a very big heavily laden tanker ship to catch up with us and the same with the next lock. To cut a long story short this trip which should have been an 8 hour day ended up being a 11 1/2 hour day causing the ship to wait for over 600 passengers to board - it should have left port at about 6 but it was 8.30+ before we all boarded. The amount of food provided for this 11 1/2 day was very poor. Thomson need to forewarn their guests that this could happen!! We would not have booked this trip had we known. So beware if you decide you want to do this trip! We thought there were fewer crew staff than previously on the Dream this time, some were lovely and friendly. Others not so which is a bit disappointing. Food was fine and my husband was looked after well on his garlic free menu by the head waiter in the restaurant Orion. What has annoyed is the most - and if it is not rectified I will take this matter to Small Claims Court - we have been charged £20 for two blue towels which we returned to the Broadway Show Lounge just before we collected our hand luggage to depart ship. It used to be the system that old blue towels were placed by the pool which could be used by people on their last day and place them in a washbin when finished with. Now they have a system on the Dream whereby you leave your hand luggage at the right hand side of the Broadway and you can collect blue towels to use on last day from the left side of Broadway. A crew member has all the cabin numbers listed on sheets of paper and he marks off the number of towels we borrowed. We actually borrowed three because my husband has a bad neck and he rolled one up for neck support. We handed these back shortly before 2.30 pm, the crew member found our cabin number on the list and marked their return. Our friends who were with us borrowed one towel only and also returned it in the same way. Imagine my surprise to discover, thanks to my friend telling me about them being charged for their returned towel, we had been charged too for our returned towels!! I am so annoyed! I have tried writing to them but just get an automated reply back saying it will be dealt with within 28 days. Tried speaking to the branch in Cleethorpes where I booked it. They were quite helpful, I thought, but apart from one phone call back my email to them yesterday has not even been acknowledged. SO BEWARE IF YOU BORROW BLUE TOWELS ON YOUR LAST DAY, GET A RECEIPT FOR THEIR RETURN OR YOU WILL POSSIBLY HAVE THE SAME PROBLEM AS US! Think I will end it here. If we did not already have another cruise booked for June to celebrate my husband's brother and wife Diamond Wedding I doubt we would go on another Thomson cruise. Ironically, before we knew about this scenario with the towels, the day before we discovered the charge of £20, we had booked a cruise to celebrate my 65th birthday in the new Discovery 2. Certainly would not have booked this one had we known!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
Milvio char and Sidesh we're extremely caring and supportive. Nothing was too much trouble for them and they were always eager to help, be it a drink from the bar or serving us the grand meals that were available in all of the ... Read More
Milvio char and Sidesh we're extremely caring and supportive. Nothing was too much trouble for them and they were always eager to help, be it a drink from the bar or serving us the grand meals that were available in all of the resturants. They were not just staff but after the first few days they were more like friends. This made the holiday a much more welcoming experience for the whole family. The broadway shows were rehearsed immaculately and never failed to dissappoint, however, there needs to be more daytime entertainment as there was not much to see until later on in the evening. The Kora La, Hot Stones and Mistrels were some of the best catered resturants we have ever attended. The waiters and waitresses never failed to be there when needed and the waitress Ayu from the Kora La was lovely, smiley and checked every 10 minutes if everything was OK with the food and drinks. The Celebration ship had better entertainment, including the staff, who would pull you up and get you involved with everything whereas the Dream didn't have entertainment staff like this. To finish, Milvio and Sidesh deserve a promotion or something similar for all of their hard work. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
We wanted to try the transatlantic after 7 previous Thomson cruises. After booking the itinerary was changed - these things happen. We were informed we owed £37.84 (we did not) oh it was a computer glitch! The flight was fine. Our ... Read More
We wanted to try the transatlantic after 7 previous Thomson cruises. After booking the itinerary was changed - these things happen. We were informed we owed £37.84 (we did not) oh it was a computer glitch! The flight was fine. Our bus to the ship dumped us outside the cruise terminal in 30+ heat. We struggled to attract any attention to get a Thomson or Tui person to come and aid our access to the terminal. Finally on the boat the cabin was fine. We disliked the constant pushing of extras. The ship was used as a training ship with lots of new staff. The waiting times were long . No napkins - issue with laundry, long waits for courses - issue with galley. I felt for the staff as they are such a strength for the company. One night one little Phillopino girl was the only waitress in the theater, poor kid apologizing for wait times. The bar service was slow and customers were sent away from the bars to wait for a waiter and indeed wait we did! i did not like the supervisors (clad in white) telling their staff off in the public arena, it is not nice to see, public humiliation is a poor motivator. Cabin steward was good, waiter in the Orion Hendrick was good too. I felt sorry for them having to placate people for issues they had no control over. The buffet was poor, the food did not seem to be as high quality as in the past. Palma airport chaos and only 1 Tui staff sending us the wrong way. The Spanish airport staff had to sort the chaos out and re direct us to the Scandinavian queue! I was mildly concerned Sweden beckoned but no all was well. i have tried to be fair I do fell that the way to describe this cruise was inconsistent. Even the oranges were dry and pithy! The entertainment was good, reasonable singers we have had some really sharp women in the past - dancers were the best ever, Cruise director was fine I liked the way he kept the progressive quiz light and humorous Weighing it all up we will stay clear of the Dream and I do feel since Tui took over we may well swerve Thomson. I have always praised their product in the past but this has made me reconsider. Read Less
31 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
This was our second time on the Thomson Dream and will probably be the last. Al a Carte restaurants were excellent but came at an extra cost £17.95 each in the Kora La...but well worth it. Excellent food and service. The Coffee ... Read More
This was our second time on the Thomson Dream and will probably be the last. Al a Carte restaurants were excellent but came at an extra cost £17.95 each in the Kora La...but well worth it. Excellent food and service. The Coffee Port served Lavatzza Speciality coffees which for the most part were good value for money. We had the drinks package so a Cappuccino cost us £1.35. However the quality changed depending on the staff. Jhelena always had a smile on her face. Drinks made by Amy were usually Luke warm at best and tasted horrible and she stopped to serve staff before Cruise guests. We stopped going when she was on duty. The self service Buffett felt more like a canteen. There were very few trained staff around and drinks and table clearing was very slow. The condition of the Lido restaurant is also very tired with stained furnishings. The food was for the most part poor. The service in the bars was variable. Jeffrey in Tides bar was his usual entertaining self but sadly he is moving to another ship soon. We often were waiting over half an hour for drinks even when the bars were fairly quite. 2 intense were back in The Watersedge. Supported by David Morgan a steel drum reggae act from Barbados. We found it odd that the Casino and a busy smoking area was sharing the same area as the Kids Club (not a problem for this cruise as it was adult only). Not sure if I had kids this would be an environment I would choose for them. The show team performed to a high standard but the shows were the same as our last cruise in May 2015. We did get the opportunity to see the new show team and they were very good. We had guest entertainers... The first week was a guy from BGT he didn't go down well and we walked out after 10 minutes. Martin Daniels shows were excellent and we would be happy to pay to see him again. Stevie Jay did a Neil Dimond tribute...... Mmmmm best not comment on that. We stayed in an inside cabin this time(7113) Heri our cabin steward was excellent, the cabin was cleaned twice daily and towels changed when we wanted. Last time we were staying in cabin 1010 an outside plus cabin and was worried how we would cope with the inside cabin. But I have to say the extra certainly wasn't worth paying and would be happy with an inside cabin in the future. We had the drinks package and found that the House Wine varied so much we started to wonder if this was a ploy to get people to buy the premium wines. By the end of the second week the Rose wine was undrinkable. Our biggest gripe was that Thomson decided to use this trip as a training opportunity for staff employed for their new ship Tui Discovery. There were far too many trainees in all areas and this did affect the standards. Other staff we recognised from last time appeared despondent. Thomson you need to emphasise customer service ..... smiles cost nothing. The Officers also need to buck their ideas up....instead of shouting at your staff and then standing back, you need to help them out from time to time, especially when the area is busy. The pools were fine some days they were closed due to sea conditions. But sun loungers were hard to get as Thomson doesn't apply the tanning time rule and they didn't remove towels from beds which had been reserved and not used for some time. Read Less
43 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
On boarding the ship all was well, the cabin was ok a little noisy when sailing. The bed was very comfortable the room temperature was good, the service from Yandy was Excellent. The subject of sun loungers and ignorance from fellow ... Read More
On boarding the ship all was well, the cabin was ok a little noisy when sailing. The bed was very comfortable the room temperature was good, the service from Yandy was Excellent. The subject of sun loungers and ignorance from fellow passengers! The Thomson book says it patrols every 45min to check on loungers with towels not being used 'beg your pardon' myself and others clocked 4.5 hrs on 4 beds And all day on many more it really is unacceptable Thomson make out they do the right thing but they are not in practice. The virus that was going around well I'm in favour of the service if only they gave a service (no plates) too many Whites walking around doing nothing 'too many chiefs not enough Indians' I felt like organising the staff myself, at one point we had to walk away at lunch and go down to the Lido as the service was so poor. In the evening we opted for waiter service polite but it just didn't have the Elegance, one evening we were forgotten about, the food was only ever warm/cold, my pork chop was so tough and dry it was inedible. The theatre put on a decent performance but it was so cold in there it was uncomfortable, fell on deaf ears when mentioned to staff. The Drinks package £200 each what a rip off, could not have a coffee could not have a bottle of water unless I wanted to pay and if I wanted a cocktail I had to pay x amount to the cost of it, so for 3/4 white wine a day and 3/4 pint of Lager a day Thomson made a tidy profit from us then charged us for a bottle of water!!!!!! The excursions we thought was reasonably priced except the Havana highlights - we didn't pay to listen to a Russian guide bang on about being a communist and proud of it not doing anything what the trip entailed due to renovation, roads closed due to important visit, Cigar factory closed. When talking to others from the cruise on different coaches they had a wonderful time done everything they should plus more, I reported to officials back on ship with a promise of investigation but somehow I doubt I will hear anything...... The Grand Cayman stingray trip was very good even though I cut my leg open on the steps to the boat with no attention given from the crew, many thanks to the lovely lady who gave me a plaster once the bleeding was under control. Purchased extra space on the flight when we booked the holiday some months later was told they had over sold these seats and they were no longer available to us, on the flight I asked the passengers in those seats when they had booked and to my surprise it was Later than I had booked.... We have cruised before with Thomson -Sorry never again, all talk no action.... Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
Having been on a few Thomson cruises in the past we knew that they are at the budget end of the spectrum & we therefore did not get too excited. Overall you get what you pay for except the "drinks package".If you buy the ... Read More
Having been on a few Thomson cruises in the past we knew that they are at the budget end of the spectrum & we therefore did not get too excited. Overall you get what you pay for except the "drinks package".If you buy the this package on board you will pay £230 per person for 1 week.However Thomson being the money grabbing company they are will charge you extra for mineral water, any bottled beer Coke, mocktails etc.There are over 200 hot & cold drinks on offer of which over 100 carry a supplement.Also be prepared to be pestered by the bar staff to buy a wine package when you first board. If you pay as you go on drinks you will find that mostly the prices are a little over & above average pub prices & the waiter service is very good. We found the quality of the food was in the main very acceptable & we did pay an extra £15.95 for the Steak on the stone meal & we thouroughly enjoyed it. Most people were very happy with the standard of entertainment, particularly the evening shows. We did not have any problem getting a seat for the later show. You must bare in mind that this ship is very old and is showing its age, but is kept very clean throughout. However there is a continuing problem with the toilets which were constantly out of order and it does make you wonder if there is any connection with another outbreak of Norovirus which affected a relatively small number of people. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We decided to do Hotel Cruise after opposite knowing what we would have on cruise after 5/6 of them. Not so on arrival in cabin letter stating virus on board week before but apparently it was even earlier than that. Cabin air conditioning ... Read More
We decided to do Hotel Cruise after opposite knowing what we would have on cruise after 5/6 of them. Not so on arrival in cabin letter stating virus on board week before but apparently it was even earlier than that. Cabin air conditioning was very poor,but after reporting it was rectified. Shower room was very cramp where loo was concerned we reported this trying to make light of it (delicate subject) however after two visits to receptionist was apparent that's what it is so go with it. Reconstruction required. Due to Virus self service buffet was restricted to being served by staff (back to school dinners for queuing this went on till last four days. Obviously pools, spa etc were out of order so no where to cool off till later in cruise. Food not always hot reports this to officer who could not have been more apologetic. Staff were excellent Henri our Cabin Stewart is a credit to your company as are the bar staff in the Mirage in fact staff all over tried very hard. We opted to go for 60min wifi and were told we could use it for 15mins each day for 4 days. Not the case it was by MB and after two days was charged £40 needless to say that was cancelled and as we were trying to,keep in touch with family for an important reason made it very awkward. As stated before this was supposed to be a special holiday for our 70th birthdays this year with thought in mind that for our 50 wedding anniversary we were going to book your latest ship for a cruise to Dubia etc. That will not be happening now as because of this and other problems we have had with your company (emails have been recorded ) don't feel we have any confidence in Thomsons at all. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
My very first cruise was on a Thomson ship over 18 years ago and I got the cruising bug. Over the years I've sailed on several P&O and Cunard ships and a Celebrity one last year. I was a bit dubious about using Thomson again ... Read More
My very first cruise was on a Thomson ship over 18 years ago and I got the cruising bug. Over the years I've sailed on several P&O and Cunard ships and a Celebrity one last year. I was a bit dubious about using Thomson again but I wanted to go back to Cuba so The Mayan Treasures and Cuban Revolution cruises seemed ideal. I wish I'd listened to my head in the first place. I can't fault the flight out to Jamaica on the Dreamliner, it was excellent. The Thomson Dream is such an old ship, it must be due for the knackers yard soon. There were lots of rusty places all over the ship, especially around the windows and portholes. When I booked (July 15) I asked that my booking be linked with a friend's and requested cabins on the same deck. When we arrived we found out that we were on different decks and at opposite ends of the ship. We knew there were spare cabins on one of the decks as a passenger had to move further up the corridor as she found a cockroach on her bed! The wood panelling in my cabin was dark making it feel gloomy, but the cabin was quite spacious with adequate wardrobe space. Thomson have the nerve to charge for the safety deposit box (£25 for two weeks) - no other cruise company I've been with has ever raised a charge. They also charged passengers to 'reserve' the best theatre seats in the show lounge. These are ordinary seats right in front of the sound box on the upper level the waiters have to walk past in front of them to serve other passengers. Thomson's pathetic attempts at money pinching are pathetic. The food in the Orion restaurant was bland, unseasoned and unimaginative. It looked like the food had sat on the plate for quite a while before being collected and served. They were understaffed and although the waiters did the best they could, mistakes with orders were common. Norovirus broke out on board and unfortunately my husband went down with it. It took over 13 hours before somebody came to see him. We were both confined to the cabin for 2 days and the food offered by room service was disgusting - boiled rice so dry it could be sliced, steamed chicken so overcooked you could sole your shoes with it and soggy veg. The cabin attendant did a runner when he found out we were confined, when he should have kept us supplied with tea, milk, sugar and water. Thomson made some changes to the food preparation in the buffet restaurant - a staff member at the entrance squirting the sanitizing gel on to passengers hands and food being plated up by staff etc. However in the Orion restaurant it was still left to the passengers to sanitize their own hands and believe me, a lot of them didn't. This is disgusting. Other cruise ships have staff around to ensure passengers hands are sanitized before entering any food area whether Norovirus has broken out or not. The destinations (apart from Cuba) were unexciting - all the stops with the exception of Havana, Cuba and George Town, Cayman Islands consisted of purpose built shopping malls with lots of Duty Free shops. The excursions we did do were good but pricey. Quite a lot of the excursions were aimed at the young and adventurous. The public rooms on board were nicely decorated and the staff/crew were wonderful. I had my reservations about cruising with Thomson again and after this experience, I doubt I will ever use them again. Sorry Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
Arrived at Montego Bay in the afternoon of the 5th January this year. We are poor walkers so had booked assistance at all airports and docks. We were looked after very well and were whisked away to coach in wheelchairs. Service was great ... Read More
Arrived at Montego Bay in the afternoon of the 5th January this year. We are poor walkers so had booked assistance at all airports and docks. We were looked after very well and were whisked away to coach in wheelchairs. Service was great all airport staff very welcoming and friendly. Arriving outside the ship details and photos were swiftly sorted. We were not greeted as is usual as we entered the ship and were left to our own devices. We have cruised many times but I saw many new passengers confused by lack of help. We found our inside cabin on 5th deck, it was near a lift which was good the cabin was very clean and surprisingly roomy, but the room was very cold and we couldn't seem to turn the air con down. We then went to the Lido buffet which was excellent many choices and lots of gluten free food but not dairy free. We dined in the Lido mornings and lunch times .Food was always hot and plentiful .The staff were very polite and friendly. On our 2nd evening we went to the Orion dining and it was Captains night so we had an 8 30pm invitation for dinner. We were 15 mins late. The Head Waiter was cross and said he didn't know if he could accommodate us which we later found he had told other people this. After asking to share a table with fellow guests he asked us to find our own table ,which we did but it was very embarrassing The Orion Restaurant is freedom dining from 6 30 till 9 30pm Every evening we dined there but had to practically beg to share a table. The Head waiter has no idea how to run a large restaurant .Every single time he said we couldnt share a table .We insisted and he grudgingly found us one .But it was horrendous his attitude to us was awful. The way he organised the diners seating didn't make any sense .For instance 2 people would ask for a small table, He didn't have any at that time so he would sit them on a large table and not allow any one to sit with them There for wasting places When other people wanted to share a table he said we couldn't as there weren't any large tables to share .Surely this is where most cruisers meet their fellow passengers. I do not complain as a rule but the Head Waiter spoiled many evenings for us and many others by his lack of competence and rudeness. I do hope this man is brought to task for this . I must say the food was excellent and the normal waiters very good ,helpful and friendly. Apart from this complaint, everything on this ship was wonderful, tours excellent shows very professional, We will cruise with Thomson again but not the dream as The Head waiter spoiled our evening dining .We have never experienced this attitude before and hopefully never again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
The ship is a little tired. However, the Cabin was bigger than RCI and P and O the other companies I have cruised with. The arrival is efficient cases checked in at Birmingham and arrived at Cabin within 30 minutes of boarding the ship. On ... Read More
The ship is a little tired. However, the Cabin was bigger than RCI and P and O the other companies I have cruised with. The arrival is efficient cases checked in at Birmingham and arrived at Cabin within 30 minutes of boarding the ship. On the return cases collected from outside cabin and sent to luggage carousel in Birmingham. There is a shortage of seats in the public areas so you need to have dinner in the buffet and get one early to get a seat. The shows are excellent but support poles in the theatre mean an obstructed view for most. The hassle of bar staff is worse than any port you will ever go to. I entered the theatre and within 3mins 45 seconds 4 different waiters asked if I wanted a drink from the bar, on another nigyht the time was 4mins and 35 seconds if you move seats they are all back asking again, if I accepted every offer I would be drunk and bankrupt. I heard from someone who did a cruise the week before that some guests were causing problems by being drunk every night not a great surprise. The waiters are rude when you say no and will start to ask every member of your group separately. Something you discipline your children for. Bar staff apart the waiters in the restaurant are very polite and good though meals take a long time every meal was served hot something you cant say about RCI where 60% of meals I sent back for being cold. The safe priced at £25 was a little steep especially as others offer it for free and an extra £9.95 for a steak in the restaurant is a liitle steep again compared to other cruise lines. Sunbeds around the pool are difficult to get so you have to get up early to get one, notices state that they will remove towels after 45 minutes but this just is not done I observed towels on beds all day only being removed by a guest late afternoon when they decided they were not going to use them. Another annoying point on Sea Days they kick you out from the pool and sunbeds at 4.30pm and the staff are not polite about this I asked to speak to someone senior and this was refused, although the cruise news states it is open until 8.00 pm when questioned we were told it was for a private party on each occasion surely these could be held somewhere else or at least the Cruise News Paper could show the correct times. Tours are variable when booked on board and the descriptions do not match the tour in many cases. The Port information is variably for example the starting port Montego Bay in Jamaica gives Spanish phrases. However, I visit Jamaica regularly and the language is English or patois. A last point is that the flights are with Thomson there plane ran out of Water after 7 hours toilets would not flush and no tea or coffee this on a 10 hour flight is awful and I certainly would not refer to it as a Dreamliner, perhaps a dream you were on a different plane liner. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
The ship is a little tired. However, the Cabin was bigger than RCI and P and O the other companies I have cruised with. The arrival is efficient cases checked in at Birmingham and arrived at Cabin within 30 minutes of boarding the ship. On ... Read More
The ship is a little tired. However, the Cabin was bigger than RCI and P and O the other companies I have cruised with. The arrival is efficient cases checked in at Birmingham and arrived at Cabin within 30 minutes of boarding the ship. On the return cases collected from outside cabin and sent to luggage carousel in Birmingham. There is a shortage of seats in the public areas so you need to have dinner in the buffet and get one early to get a seat. The shows are excellent but support poles in the theatre mean an obstructed view for most. The hassle of bar staff is worse than any port you will ever go to. I entered the theatre and within 3mins 45 seconds 4 different waiters asked if I wanted a drink from the bar, on another nigyht the time was 4mins and 35 seconds if you move seats they are all back asking again, if I accepted every offer I would be drunk and bankrupt. I heard from someone who did a cruise the week before that some guests were causing problems by being drunk every night not a great surprise. The waiters are rude when you say no and will start to ask every member of your group separately. Something you discipline your children for. Bar staff apart the waiters in the restaurant are very polite and good though meals take a long time every meal was served hot something you cant say about RCI where 60% of meals I sent back for being cold. The safe priced at £25 was a little steep especially as others offer it for free and an extra £9.95 for a steak in the restaurant is a liitle steep again compared to other cruise lines. Sunbeds around the pool are difficult to get so you have to get up early to get one, notices state that they will remove towels after 45 minutes but this just is not done I observed towels on beds all day only being removed by a guest late afternoon when they decided they were not going to use them. Another annoying point on Sea Days they kick you out from the pool and sunbeds at 4.30pm and the staff are not polite about this I asked to speak to someone senior and this was refused, although the cruise news states it is open until 8.00 pm when questioned we were told it was for a private party on each occasion surely these could be held somewhere else or at least the Cruise News Paper could show the correct times. Tours are variable when booked on board and the descriptions do not match the tour in many cases. The Port information is variably for example the starting port Montego Bay in Jamaica gives Spanish phrases. However, I visit Jamaica regularly and the language is English or patois. A last point is that the flights are with Thomson there plane ran out of Water after 7 hours toilets would not flush and no tea or coffee this on a 10 hour flight is awful and I certainly would not refer to it as a Dreamliner, perhaps a dream you were on a different plane liner. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2015
Thomson Dreamliner is a fantastic plane. Lots of leg room and free food and drink during the flight. But, what started well, ended badly. The Jamaican airport was hot, humid, crowded and queued. No where to sit, no air conditioning, no ... Read More
Thomson Dreamliner is a fantastic plane. Lots of leg room and free food and drink during the flight. But, what started well, ended badly. The Jamaican airport was hot, humid, crowded and queued. No where to sit, no air conditioning, no water and no where to rest in a confined corridor containing hundreds of people. Tempers flared after hours waiting to get to embarkation and some felt faint. A musical group from the island greeted us at the ship but the singer was out of tune and the musicians seemed fed up of playing it took that long for everyone to board. The buffets were always full of food and refreshments and the restaurant was great for an evening meal. However, the food was mostly overcooked, warm at best when eating and not very tasty in all the eateries. I did not like the fact you helped yourself to buffet with tongs. It would have been more hygienic to have been given the food by buffet staff. Despite the fact the ship had antibacterial dispensers throughout, many passengers ignored them. I had a bad tummy in the middle of the first week and was told by a passenger that the ship had had Noro virus aboard the week before resulting in the closure of the Jacuzzis. I was also by other passengers that many people were being treated for a bad cough, an outbreak which had been on board since December with antibiotic drips having to be issued for pneumonia and also that 5 people had died on board during this time. Myself and my husband both went home with a bad cough at the end of the cruise. One woman was badly burnt by a soot gob that had been blown from the ship's funnel. Many passengers had broken their arms whilst on board. Health and safety was an issue as I saw a crew member carrying two stacks of cups on his tray down a spiral staircase. Smoking was allowed on the decks which was very quickly extended to inside the ship and door areas by smokers who ignored the rules. It was hard to get away from cigarette smoke on the deck areas. We found it very difficult to get a sun lounger before 10am and these were hogged by selfish passengers all day despite the fact that they were not using them for hours. The ship had an overcrowded feel during the sea days and the days were quite strained. The behavior of some of the passengers was terrible despite their mature years. Tempers flared and a fight broke out over the use of a lift which carried on in the sun deck. There was a lot of foul language used by some of the down to earth types which did offend other passengers with their rudeness at times. Some of the deck flooring was bubbled and torn. The first port was La Romana. I wish I had stayed aboard the ship. We were transported by shuttle to the nearby town and was immediately bombarded by very persistent venders that were very intimidating. We all immediately got right back on the bus and returned to the ship. This port did not match the description at all. My favourite ports were St Maartin and Antigua. Shops were wonderful and there were many nice places to go. The Virgin Islands were a little boring as we had not been able to book a tour but on returning to the ship many passengers were disappointed with their trips here. One had gone to see whales and was told by locals that whales are a rare sight in April as they don’t arrive until June when the season for them starts. We did see some flying fish and dolphins on the sea days. Gibraltar is a nice place but there was very little time to visit more than one venue as the ship departs at 2pm and we had to be back on board by 1:30. We were talked out of using the cable car by the port taxi drivers who said that we would not have time to use it. The port inspector confirmed this when asked to back up the statements but on speaking to the tourist visitor centre they said we would have had plenty of time to use it. So I think we were conned into using them at a cost. To sum up, I personally quite enjoyed my time on this cruise but I know that quite a few other passengers were very disappointed and if rumors were correct some did not return at all. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2015
The Good Flight on the new Dreamliner was perfect! Free food and drink and lots of leg room. Great facilities meant the 9 hour flight passed quickly and with comfort. The ship was very clean throughout and the crew went out of their ... Read More
The Good Flight on the new Dreamliner was perfect! Free food and drink and lots of leg room. Great facilities meant the 9 hour flight passed quickly and with comfort. The ship was very clean throughout and the crew went out of their way to make everything near perfect and to make you feel welcome. The staff always smiled asking if everything was OK and if something was amiss they fixed it. They all worked very hard to keep everything organised and tidy. The officers were polite and the activities and entertainment staff performances were excellent. Passengers were well cared for at all times. Ourselves and most people we spoke to were very impressed with the efforts of the crew. We tipped in recognition of this despite tips already being included in the package. There was a good selection of foods available. The restaurants were well organised and clean. The waiting staff attentive. There were plenty of sanitising units scattered about the ship for people to use to avoid contamination. The Bad At the airport in Jamaica hundreds of people waited for ages for immigration paperwork to be completed in long queues without any air conditioning inside a narrow corridor which meant some passengers were near passing out. The ship was overcrowded. There were no sun loungers available after 10 am. Passengers scuffled for lifts, seats in the bars/theatre and many tempers flared as a result. Health and Safety on board ship was a concern. Slippery surfaces on the gangways, pool areas, showers, decks and bar areas. We saw many passengers with broken arms. One woman had been burned by a gob of soot that had landed on her sun lounger from the ship's funnel. I suffered a bad tummy in the middle of the first week despite the fact I had not eaten anything off the ship. Smoking was allowed on some of the deck areas which some passengers flouted even smoking inside the ship when no one was looking, risking the health and safety of other passengers as the smoke was hard to avoid even outside. I saw dimps discarded inappropriately, a fire hazard. Many passengers ignored the sanitising units therefore I feel it would have been wiser for all food to be dispensed by staff members instead of the tongues placed for public use at the buffet areas. Bar staff carried trays stacked high with crockery above their heads and even climbed down the spiral staircases from the top deck with stacked trays risking the safety of passengers below. Ice creams for purchase were taken out of the freezers and conveyed about the ship for sale in inadequate containers which failed to keep them cool enough. I returned an ice cream that had gone bad and was told I could only replace it for one the same, I was not offered my money back. Shower heads were old and warn, a breeding ground for bugs and towels, sheets and pillows were stained. The beds were hard and uncomfortable. The toilet flushing system on the ship failed regularly. There was often a bad smell in the cabin corridor areas. The cooked food was never hot only warm at best, overcooked and tasteless and this was the case even in the service restaurant. There were many passengers suffering from a bad cough, some being treated for pneumonia with antibiotic drips. We heard from various passengers that up to 5 people had died during the trip and one passenger had to be taken to hospital. We also came down with a very bad cough towards the end of the trip ourselves. To Sum Up Overall we enjoyed the cruise but not to the extent that I would book to sail on Thomson cruises again. I could not help but feel a cramped holiday camp style atmosphere about this cruise as some health and safety aspects were seriously lacking. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2015
We travelled to Mo'Bay on the Dreamliner from Gatwick Airport. After a lot of fluffing with the immigration cards the transfer to the ship was quick and getting boarding cards etc for the ship was easy too. A couple of members of the ... Read More
We travelled to Mo'Bay on the Dreamliner from Gatwick Airport. After a lot of fluffing with the immigration cards the transfer to the ship was quick and getting boarding cards etc for the ship was easy too. A couple of members of the Thomson Team (well, they were in uniform) were quite clearly in a relationship and behaving in an amorous way while working we didn't think was appropriate! Anyway, we went off to find out room (on Deck 5) which was clean & serviceable. The Bunk beds were already made up for our children & our Cabin Steward Ariana was lovely. Muster drill takes place at 7pm local time (which by this point is 1am UK) so our children were already deliriously exhausted. We didn't attend the 'Sail-away' Party as it didn't start until 10pm - too late for us (with the long day of travelling and the time difference). We retired to our cabin shortly after the Muster Drill. The next day was our youngest's birthday & we thank Ariana for his assistance in styling her bed & putting up with birthday balloons in the cabin while he did his job. This was a sea day so we set about familiarising ourselves with the ship. The Itinerary was our primary reason for booking this particular cruise (Cuban Fusion) visiting Mexico, Cuba & Grand Cayman. We did book an excursion to Stingray City in GC. Although the representative on the ship twice got the different excursions wrong so we ended up getting an earlier tender to shore, then had to wait 45 mins in the port in the heat! That aside the excursion was lovely, different - although expensive, thoroughly recommend it! We did enjoy just wondering around Cozumel, although there is little there we were originally due to dock at Playa De Carmen but this was changed (Thomson finally got around to telling us this 6 weeks after we discovered the change ourselves!!) Our children did attend kids club some times, but it is with the children that we felt the ship was lacking. Due to ratios of under 8's on busy days our children had to attend separate clubs, so as one would leave the kids club another would go (our children are 5 & 11) - not exactly what we had expected! The time of the sessions varied, but generally it was Breakfast Club 9-11am (apparently they would collect your children from the cabin), 2-4pm then again in the evening but not until 8-10pm. The kids club room was spacious and brightly decorated. But they were very much confined to the room which was on deck 8 at the rear of the ship. There was no 'Disco' for them, although they did once do a PJ Movie evening. I didn't see the kids club staff outside of the club (apart from when they were eating) there was no engaging with the children. getting the excited about events (what events?!) The kids club sessions didn't correlate with the shows on the ship (they didn't start until gone 9pm) which anyone holidaying with young children didn't stand a chance of seeing a show unless its with a cranky child wriggling on their laps. They did enjoy a trip to the bridge when we were in port in Havana. No evening excursions for us in Havana either - nothing was child friendly. We chose to get a hop on hop off bus for $5 Cuban each which took us all around the city (about 3 hours) The 'children's pool' at the Lido pool on Deck 9 at the rear of the ship was nothing more than a glorified foot wash (about 6 inches deep). This area itself was lacking in atmosphere - no quiz, games, music - nothing. A singer on the mezzanine at around 3pm in the afternoon was as good as it got. The Pool on Deck 11 (according to Thomsons own paperwork) is stipulated as a Adults Only pool, yet it is here that all the poolside daytime entertainment takes place - AND there were children in the pool, naturally as this is where the atmosphere is! We much preferred our days up here with our children (& yes, they used the pool). I understand the shows are the Dream are to rival those of the West End, but it's very unfortunate that when holidaying with children 9/9.30pm is too late - for us anyway, our children don't lie in with the average day starting at 6/6.30am keeping them up late just results in cranky children. It's a shame there wasn't an earlier showing that perhaps the children could have enjoyed with us. As a result we didn't see ANY evening shows onboard, having to retire to our cabin to pop the children to bed. Although the Dream is advertised as a 'Family Friendly' ship which it is to a degree, the children's entertainment & facilities are lacking & seem very much like an after thought - doing 'just enough' to reel in the family customer. If we were a couple travelling without children, we wouldn't have worried about the time of the shows, how happy our children were entertained, but we were and we felt that there needs were only just met - which isn't enough when spending £6000 on a cruise/stay holiday - our expectation was higher. All in all, thanks primarily to the Itinerary, we enjoyed the cruise. Will we cruise again? Yes. Will we cruise again with Thomson? No. We'll be choosing a larger ship on a cruise line that knows how to look after children well. Happy Children = Happy Parents = Re-booking Parents! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2015
Our journey took place on Thomsons Dreamliner aeroplane which was very nice . we had row 12 a and b for seating it had extra legroom which we did not pay for . the service on board was very nice too plenty of free drinks and food and ... Read More
Our journey took place on Thomsons Dreamliner aeroplane which was very nice . we had row 12 a and b for seating it had extra legroom which we did not pay for . the service on board was very nice too plenty of free drinks and food and with a smile nothing was too much trouble .the aeroplane has extra wide isles with dimming lights for windows and cabin our luggage allowance was 20 kg cases with 7 kg hand luggage. best of all both flights there and back were on time , its a pity that the scales in Jamaica did not match uk ones as we were charged for 3 kg coming home which was £54 with nothing bought on holiday only jewellery which was in my hand luggage . The airport to cruise transfer was smooth with a quick check in and boarding all within an hour we were in our cabin no 6108 on deck 6 . the staff were efficient and our cabin maid greeted us on arrival our room had a large window and king size bed with a settee and chair dressing table and stool and a small table . there was plenty of wardrobe space 2 x double with long parts for evening clothes also a safe which was charged at £15 per week which i did not pay for out of principle. there were 3 large drawers and a carpet . bedding was nice and soft pillows we slept well in this room there was no noise . the bathroom had a small bath with a shower ,soap and towels and a sink with the same thanks to our perfect maid called Ni Ketut she was very friendly and we had lovely conversations about her home in the Philippines. the ship was smaller than we had been on before with very small lifts that only 4 people could travel given there were less able bodied people than ourselves we did a lot of stair climbing . the pool was very nice to swim in with a retractable roof over it for bad weather. the SUNBEDS were so close i could have heard my neighbour breathing no room to move on this deck with all demonstrations and pool waiters serving here. it was the place to be . also a sun deck on top deck with lovely loungers and no one to bother you but boy was it hot magic ! the show lounge was comfortable with the best shows i have seen in 7 cruises , these people worked so hard. the stops from this trip were not very organized i heard a lot of people complaining about their buses and how they were not good value for money. we did our own thing and used taxis etc and followed them at a quarter of the price they paid. one stop Falmouth we did not see as the ship was too small to dock in high winds so we had 2 days in Jamaica at the end of our trip. this trip in a taxi was awful at Montego bay as there were lots of people on drugs and shouting when we went to the town so we made a quick exit back to the ship. DINING for us this was very poor in the main dining room the service and food presented on more than one occasion was not up to standard . so much so that my husband asked the waiter to return a baked Alaska to the kitchen not even started for the lady sitting next to him as it was liquid on a plate. this is not acceptable on a 4 star ship . however the buffet on deck was perfect with fresh well cooked and presented food which we enjoyed . the drinks on board were hotel prices in the uk and we even had to buy the water £2 for the tea and coffee in the cabin and they state in the brochure that tea and coffee are provided. is this not a contradiction, you cannot take water from he tap in the cabin , we found a way around this as free water was given on the pool deck bar so we bought one then topped up while on deck and enjoyed. we did a hot stone experience of cooking food on lava stones which we enjoyed as there was a demonstration on board while sitting at the pool deck. this is advertised in your room with a picture of a nice table curtains in the back ground and a person standing at the table serving we were told it was al a carte and arrived on deck wooden floor with wooden table no air con and lava rocks we enjoyed our meal and service but should have stayed in swim wear instead of dressing up. no setting no lights and 10 yards away an empty al a carte not being used as no one in it. roataan stop at mahogany bay was a lovely place with a nice beach and everything laid on this was used by everyone even though we did get a shower of rain. i did not use the spa as i found it overpriced , we did visit the casino to buy £5 worth of lottery tickets = 3 which to our delight we were the only winners on board with 4 out of 6 numbers we got £75 back instead of £10000 this was very nice . we left the ship having had a lovely break to carry on to a hotel in negril for 1 week but if i was asked would i use thomson for a cruise again my answer would be no BUT i spoke with a lot of people who only come for one thing the staff and i must say i agree they were the best all helpful and smiling and had time for everyone i thank cruise critic for picking me as their 2014 winner of the competition it was a lovely thing to go on 2 weeks after you retire so once again thank you Read Less
Marella Dream Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 3.9
Dining 4.0 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.4
Family 4.0 3.4
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.6
Enrichment 3.0 3.4
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.6
Rates 4.0 3.9

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