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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We wanted to take my Mum who is 84 to see Venice, Rome, Croatia, Montenegro and Athens for her first time. We always choose Costa for value for money. The crew do a great job. Can't fault bar service, restaurant service or ... Read More
We wanted to take my Mum who is 84 to see Venice, Rome, Croatia, Montenegro and Athens for her first time. We always choose Costa for value for money. The crew do a great job. Can't fault bar service, restaurant service or care/cleanliness of cabin. The buffet food was great but the physical layout is annoying. Restaurant food fantastic. The ship is badly laid out. The bars and even the specialist restaurants are all thoroughfares making it impossible to relax as people are constantly streaming through. There is a huge upper outdoor deck away from the pools and children but no convenient bar up there if you like a cocktail while you sunbath. We had booked Samsara cabin giving inclusive Spa access. It was a sanctuary we used every day but facilities are co-ed which is very off-putting. Theatre shows we're all amazing and cruise director Sabrina fabulous. Embarkation in Venice would have been a nightmare if we hadn't had priority because of Mum's reduced mobility. Poorly organised and little space. Disembarkation was also a nightmare. They don't explain it in advance that there may be a long time between docking and getting to your taxi. One final point about Costa..... Wait until you are on board to book your internet package. The best value social media package is not offered on the web site and they won't let you cancel your prebooked package once on board to change it. If you take one thing from this review remember Costa offer FANTASTIC VALUE FOR MONEY. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
It was the only eastern Meditteranean cruise available at Christmas time. My family and I had a wonderful time however the cruise itself was very average. Not excellent, not terrible. I appreciate the fact that they made it feel as ... Read More
It was the only eastern Meditteranean cruise available at Christmas time. My family and I had a wonderful time however the cruise itself was very average. Not excellent, not terrible. I appreciate the fact that they made it feel as "Chistmassy" as possible which was important since this was our first time ever travelling during the holiday. The food was good however not always available. For example, if you'd like to eat something after dinner, your only choice is room service or a pizza - each at an additional cost unless you buy upgraded package. The service was very good and there was definitely an appropriate number of employees. Kudos to the ship for getting that right. The excursions were overpriced...I found that paying a taxi driver would give you a better tour and more for your money. The ports were good. Croatia was the highlight although pulling into port of Montenegro was nothing short of spectacular. Upon return, were delayed due to immense fog thus creating traveling nightmares for many. I heard through the grapevine that there were options to get us into port however I cannot confirm this. I would recommend this cruise to someone with the same goal as ours however keep your expectations in check and you might be pleasantly surprised. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
Our very first cruise as passengers - and I was disappointed. I work in entertainment for living and have worked on board these vessels, so when we got home, I thought I'd share my opinion on the Entertainment on the Costa Luminosa. ... Read More
Our very first cruise as passengers - and I was disappointed. I work in entertainment for living and have worked on board these vessels, so when we got home, I thought I'd share my opinion on the Entertainment on the Costa Luminosa. Please forgive me if my review contains technical stuff and jargon that only entertainers might understand. I can't just say it was terrible, because it wasn't, but some of it was pretty poor. I think maybe I just expected better. I might have expected too much, but I don't think so. Review of the Entertainment on the Costa Luminosa. My wife and I have just had our very first cruise experience with Costa on board the Luminosa and we found the ship, the food and the staff wonderful. My career has been in entertainment, starting professionally in 1984, and at 60 – I’m now working as a Production Manager, or Company Manager or other similar roles. I’m currently preparing a show for XXXXX, which has already sold over 35,000 tickets, and I will be the Company Manager for this production. A number of my previous dancers have worked for Costa, so I was looking forward to the on-board entertainment. On arriving at the theatre I noticed a good technical installation – Digico sound desk and the stage revolve and lifts. Sadly, once the shows started to run, things were not so good. Small things at first – I’m aware that cruise ship shows are pre-produced and run from timecode, but some of the things I observed were a failing of the house crew in maintaining and tweaking. For example, pre-show, the lighting provides some slow moving gobos on the auditorium sides – all in one colour, bar one that was green. Nobody noticed, or they did, they didn't fix it. Similarly, quite a few states features fixtures with their beams in a row, apart from the odd one – presumably it had been removed for servicing or repair and replaced, but nobody checked the alignment. The actual lighting design was a bit odd – so many basic stock effects and bog standard gobos – that I can see everywhere – just not special. The one person technically who stood out was the guy mixing sound. He was clearly skilled, and dedicated. He removed his comms headset which shows he was only interested in sound balance, and he made constant adjustments, and did not lose his focus in any of the shows where I observed him. I think he did an excellent job with the material he was presented with. In the technical department the only crew issues from the production point was the video. The theatre has decent equipment but those Vinten heads are capable of very smooth and precise movement. The cameras have remote zoom and focus demands, but the head is set up badly, so moves were very jerky. Not really an operator fault, merely nobody skilled enough to set up the head controls and realise that pan bars should be more horizontal than vertical – because this exaggerates the jerks. Staging Power flying of the slower sort always looks a little iffy – but what became very annoying was the continual flying in and out of the various screens and gauzes, and some of the moving lights fixed to the vertical drops had very visible equipment in the almost dark state – this encourages viewers to try to see what it is. Whenever this kind of thing is done, the lighting needs adjusting to make the mechanics invisible. In one show there were two mirror balls, rigged at different heights – looked really tacky. One safety issue I noticed. Scanning the audience with lasers is a very controlled effect, and this wasn’t controlled at all. I held a finger up to my eyes so I could see the effect, but not the actual device for my own safety. Where I was sitting on deck 3, the beams clearly hit the people on deck 2 seating and occasionally went up above my level. The risk assessment for the lasers would be interesting to read. The usual rule would be to NOT scan the audience. Costa seem to think this is OK - in the UK, it would not be done. The performers, however, were a very weak link. Singers I appreciate that almost certainly the tracks they performed to are common to all ships, but their range did not match the tracks at all well. Both male singers were weak in their bottom range and had little power, so it wasn’t until they could sing higher that any power was available in their voice – unfortunately, many numbers started low – too low for these two. The taller of the two was quite weak, vocally - and had very poor stage presence looking awkward in some numbers. The shorter of the two had a nicer voice in his higher range, but was still weak. The two girl singers were simply average – pleasant enough, but in numbers where they were clearly supposed to be singing in a certain style – Diana Ross, Whitney Houston etc. they were unable to be convincing. One had quite painful pitching in places. In general, the four singers were typical of the UK Haven holiday centre standard – I’m very familiar with Haven, Warners and a few others, including the excellent Potters holiday centre – which is equipped in a very similar way to the Costa ships. None of the singers met the Potter’s standard, which was not what I expected. Dancers Clearly the dancers at audition were probably competent, however I can only assume there is no dance captain, or that there is, and this person is ineffective. Many routines, and I saw all the entertainment available, were sloppy. In some, difficult to guess if sequences should have been in unison or canon! Things like split leaps for example. Simply all over the place. No symmetry and messy. One of the dancers – who looked a little older and had lighter hair and featured in some duet numbers looked like he knew exactly what to do, but was doing it at his version of the correct time, while the others did it reasonably together in theirs. He partnered frequently with a guy with short dreadlocks, and the two never seemed to gel. The other two male dancers were forgettable. Not bad, but they didn’t shine. The five girls were competent but uncoordinated – all the small things – too much hip turn or too little compared to the others – arms and legs at different angles and very varying degrees of effort and energy, A few numbers looked like they were marking, not performing. The girls also had spacing issues, despite the usual tape numbers on the hidden stage edge – I checked. They had trouble retaining shape when going upstage, especially when the lifts were up, and they had to go up and back, and the shape got lost. Small things made it messy – in one routine when they all saluted, they all did it differently. Different arm angles and worst of all, their palms – vertical and facing front, or horizontal facing down – and those facing down had some rakish angles? These small attention to detail features should have been spotted and rectified by the dance captain, but clearly this was a feature not implemented, which comes down to not just the dancers but the person in charge. If this person was me, I’d have had them in for extra calls to tighten things up, fix the spacing, remove some strange physical weirdnesses (the dancer who always turned their lip up, for example). Exits were also a bit odd – some doing some very contrived movements, others not. Some looked bored, some looked keen and excited. The Acrobats They were competent, professional and entertaining – for about ten minutes. An entire show was just too much, it got repetitive and dull. Cannot fault their performances but better as an insert to another show, it did not warrant a show of it’s own. The Voice I had low expectations and wasn’t disappointed. It made me feel embarrassed to be there. The standard of the performers was bound to vary considerably, but it was the management of it that was awkward. As a concept it had merit, but I sensed the audience were not like the Voice or X-Factor audiences out to laugh at them, and they too felt embarrassed with the weak ones, and over enthusiastic with the better ones. Picking the winner was simple. The Crew Show I expected, based on the professional performers, that this show would be terrible. In fact, it was excellent. Showing up the professional dancers in terms of energy, and one of the singers was better than the professionals – this should NOT have happened. A crew member, singing for fun should not perform better than somebody who does this as a career. The dancers and singers did not appear to have any extra duties, so I wonder what they did with all their time off? Certainly it wasn’t spent rehearsing. Show Bands I’m familiar with the ship band concept from my own limited experience on ships – I’m in a tribute band who have played on P&O, and like the theatre team, many seemed bored to tears. The guy playing the piano in one bar used tracks, and got hopelessly lost in one of the songs, clearly he can play and sing, but just forgot where he was. In another venue there was a duo, and in the venue where guests were dancing, their showband were clearly talented but playing dire music – although I have to say that people were dancing to it. Tarentellas and Polkas I really did not expect on a cruise, but that’s almost certainly me not realising what the average guest wants. Ents Team They tried hard, but so much of what they had to do was old fashioned and boring, what could they do? Quizzes – who on earth designed these, they were awful. Showing images from countries around the world, and guests writing down the countries was so dull – then they went around them all again, to cope with a few new guests who strolled in. Gripping? More like watching paint dry. So long for so few questions. Same again with the only other quiz I witnessed – identifying beer brands from bottles around the world! Really? This kind of entertainment is cringeworthy if you are under 30, and awkward for me, just turned 60. I also started to watch a quiz where the three ents team members mimed actions to movie theme music. I left. It’s also probably a country specific thing, but I resented after a while, the constant demand to applause – applause. If I want to applaud a performer, I will. In this case I was asked to applaud performances that were poor, lacklustre or in some cases, embarrassing. Conclusions I saw a number of very average shows, and none that impressed me with the exception of the crew show. Standards wise, in the UK we have various levels of performance standard in shows. In quality terms, the West End shows are at the top, with very critical attention to detail, the touring production of these shows try to maintain this quality, but there are compromises due to the differences in venues. Out of the holiday centre market, I have not seen better than the shows at the Potters Resort in Norfolk. Good staging, competent singers, dancers and musicians. The Warner holiday centres come next in quality, with Haven and the individual small group sites firmly at the bottom because their entertainers tend to be generic rather than specialists in one area. I have to report that the Costa show falls to the bottom of the list. Not entirely the fault of the performers, but the management who clearly have noticed none of this. It did not spoil my holiday, as the off-ship experience was very good, and of course the food on board was wonderful, but as my job is entertainment, I was looking forward to excellent entertainment, and it was embarrassingly poor. We shared our dining table with two other couples and they said exactly the same thing, from their non-entertainment background. Sadly - that's my first and last Costa cruise - I shan't be doing any more whatever. Read Less
20 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
We chose this cruise because of the great port calls; Italy, athens, olympia, Kotor, and Split. The destinations did not disappoint. They were fantastic and we avoided much of the crowds by cruising in the winter. Unfortunately, we did ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the great port calls; Italy, athens, olympia, Kotor, and Split. The destinations did not disappoint. They were fantastic and we avoided much of the crowds by cruising in the winter. Unfortunately, we did not have a chance to explore Venice before our cruise departed as Easyjet canceled the flight. Needless to say, we had to scramble to find alternative transportation to Venice and it cost us an extra day of travel. The embarkation and disembarkation was extremely smooth at Venice. We had no issues getting on the ship four hours before the departure. Customs was smooth and friendly and this was the easiest embarkation we have experienced. The Luminosa allows you to embark or disembark at any of the port calls but I'm unsure how smooth the process was at the other locations. Like other reviewers, we found the Luminosa to be average. Compared to other cruises, the food was disappointing. Mainly pasta dishes and you pay extra for the dishes that are included on other cruises such as steak and lobster. Costa cruise lines charges extra for things like coffee, bottled water, ice cream, and even pizza. We found the layout of the cruise ship to be very similar to other cruise lines of this size. Spa on the 9th floor near the front of the ship, cafeteria style dining on the ninth floor, restaurant on the 2nd floor, casino, bars, etc. Our classic cabin with a balcony was nice; easily accommodating two adults and two children. The cabin was well insulated but we did hear some children running in the cabin above us. Thankfully, no issue with neighbors that smoke. The kids club seemed fine. My nine year old only went a few times but there didn't seem to be any language barriers. The teen club, however, was given over for infant space. As a result, the teens didn't really have a place to hang out and they would meet on various parts of the ship. It was a poor compromise and our teenage daughter, whom usually likes the teen club, chose not to participate on this cruise. It is apparent the crew is overworked. We were told they work 13 hour days for nine months without a day off. Our steward was responsible for around 20 cabins and it showed. Although hard working and friendly, you could tell the staff was stressed. Also, be prepared for lots of Italians and a lack of personal space and no regard for queues. Of course, this happens with other nationalities as well. Also, the announcements must have been in at least three languages which got tedious after a while. We did not attend any of the entertainment options but other passengers had good reviews for the nightly entertainment. All in all, we had a good cruise thanks to the port calls. Costa Luminosa has the potential to be a great cruise ship. Unfortunately, the quality of the food and overworked staff prevent the experience from rising to the next level. I would recommend the ship to those who are excited about visiting European ports and the timing works or the Luminosa price is significantly less than the competitors. Otherwise, it would be wise to consider other cruise ships. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
This is the first time I have been motivated to write a review, but we were so disappointed with Costa this time. We have cruised with them for several years, and have always been very happy. Everything started fine. Embarkation in ... Read More
This is the first time I have been motivated to write a review, but we were so disappointed with Costa this time. We have cruised with them for several years, and have always been very happy. Everything started fine. Embarkation in Venice was more or less painless, the cabin was ready, and the food in the buffet dining room at lunch time absolutely fine. It was only when the cruise really got started we began to notice how things had gone down even from 6 months ago. In the main dining room for dinner, there were clearly staff shortages, only one waiting at table, previously had been two. Our waiter, as did many others, looked exhausted, but still managed to be delightful always with a smile and a cheerful attitude. The menu choices have been reduced for every course, and the 'everyday' menu, that is the one that doesn't change day to day, pretty restricted. No steak or meat dish available, mostly consisting of pasta. We expect pasta, there is always a pasta course, but for there to be no alternative for those who don't especially like pasta is not really satisfactory. The food was good, but having experienced what costa had to offer in previous years, didn't feel that it was as good. Worst of all, and we could hardly believe this, given that Costa is an italian cruise line, there was no pizza or ice cream available anywhere on the menu included in the cost of the cruise, not even in the buffet dining room. Reason - they sell it. Outrageous; we have complained very strongly on the feedback form they send out at the end of the cruise. Don't mind the paid for restaurants, don't use them, but accept that everyone has them these days. But pizza and ice cream??!! In the bars, again lack of staff very noticeable. We waited for about half an hour for a waiter, then gave up and went to the bar to collect our own drinks. Which is fine, except that all drinks carry a 15% service charge, so you kind of expect service. Some of the staff behind the bar were very offhand, appeared to be quite demoralised, and some didn't even give any eye contact, let alone engage in conversation. They weren't rude exactly, just did what they had to do, took the card and served the drink and that is all. Once we managed to get a waiter, the ones we had anything to do with were lovely, chatty and friendly, but appeared very rushed. Breakfast in the main dining room was pretty chaotic, they have a weird system of cold buffet, but with some hot items, as well as the served menu items. Getting those hot items from the buffet, to co-ordinate with a hot item from the menu so as to make up a breakfast dish was challenging to say the least. Main dining room should be a served menu, if you want buffet dining then you would go in the buffet restaurant. The reason we didn't go up there was that it was extremely difficult to get a seat at busy times, and again was pretty chaotic. At least in the main dining room you do get a seat, even though service could be slow, and on one occasion we had to get the Maitre'd involved as the table we were led to was not set, and no amount of asking got us any cutlery or crockery. The ship was almost full, there were clearly not nearly enough staff. Everything else was pretty much what we have expected from Costa. Entertainment is difficult we recognise that, with there being so many different languages to contend with. The cruise dancers and singers are good, and the acrobat dancers who put on an individual show were excellent. Otherwise the only alternative was 'the Voice of the Seas', talent show, and the crew show. The crew show was the most enjoyable of them all and the theatre was packed. Sadly packed with some very rude people who don't get that pushing past people and knocking their drinks over isn't acceptable, especially when the show has started. But this is the passengers, not Costa. They no longer serve drinks in the theatre, which is a good thing, but you can take them in. Apart from a cruise in an area where Costa don't go, this is the only line we have used in the past few years. Sadly, we will be trying someone else next time. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
I booked this cruise because of the itinerary and the very good price. We have been on several other cruises in the Carnival brand i.e Cunard X1 Princess X4 and Carnival X1 plus also NCL X2 and Royal Caribbean X1 . I was expecting some ... Read More
I booked this cruise because of the itinerary and the very good price. We have been on several other cruises in the Carnival brand i.e Cunard X1 Princess X4 and Carnival X1 plus also NCL X2 and Royal Caribbean X1 . I was expecting some compromises due to the very keen price... what I wasn't expecting was the constant penny pinching for example no tap water or coffee with meals outside of the breakfast time without additional charge.It is also the most aggressive sale of Drinks packages I have ever seen 30 euros per day plus...you have to drink a lot to make that worthwhile and many people were. The ship itself was very clean and high standard certainly having the Italian sparkle. I knew about the compromises on the multi language being mainly European clientele my wife and I were okay with that. The menu is European focused and we really liked the menu in the formal dining room (I like pasta and Italian and sea food) however the buffet was very limited choice compared to other ships and much more restrictive hours presumably to keep costs down... it was even additional charge for pizza!. Entertainment by the formal ships company was good but several of the nights were just Karaoke by the ships entertainment crew in Butlins red coat style not really cruising standard by any stretch. Trieste Easy walk and okay for 4 hours not fantastic but ok. Corfu 2.5 Km into town not really enough time allowed here... we arrived late and due to weather only 3 hrs so did not see much beyond the immediate town. Katakolon good trip to Olympia for 15 euros with Costa...and enough time to see. Mykanos landing by tender but nice place and decent time allowed. Dubrovnik...this was missed out and went to Kotor in Montenegro instead which was lovely. In summary great potential but I do not think we will be cruising Costa again.... an inclusive drinks package would remove some of the grumbles on penny pinching. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
We chose this cruise because of port of embarkation convenience and itinerary. Also had cruised before with Costa, and had an overall great experience. The embarkation procedure was not very smooth, but forgivable because it was not ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of port of embarkation convenience and itinerary. Also had cruised before with Costa, and had an overall great experience. The embarkation procedure was not very smooth, but forgivable because it was not the main embarkation port (cruise normally starts at Venice, we embarked in Katakolon). The ship was adequate, with all the usual amenities, fairly good condition. The cabin was on the small-ish side but understandable since it was an inside cabin at the lower deck. The cabin attendant was polite, but seemed overwhelmed with the number of cabins he had to attend to (reduction in staff?). Also we were charged minibar usage we never made. The amount was returned after complaining about it. Additionally, there may or may not be a situation with the blue towels (pool towels): twice the cabin attendant gave us back fewer than the initial number (there is a plaque when you arrive that states any missing towels will incur a 20 euro fine). I would like to believe it was an honest mistake. The dining was the highlight of the cruise, as the food was consistently good and well presented. However, we were assigned to just one waiter (as it seemed to be the normal in this cruise) who was not overly friendly. Also very bad decision not to include water with the restaurant meals (you have to actually buy it). The buffet restaurants (which we used fewer times) had also good quality food, but it seemed that the quantity was very tightly controlled. The main entertainment (theater/shows) was a hit-or-miss affair. The highlight was the "Voice of the sea" final. The singing/dancing troupe was adequate, and probably better than the remaining one-man-shows. Also one of the shows was repeated on two separate days in a 7-night cruise. The various activities however, where probably geared toward either humiliating a guest for the enjoyment of the other guests, or bluntly advertising a for-pay on board service available. The service in the bars was generally good, however the best (in our opinion) venue which is the gelateria on deck 3 was not adequate (too many customers for the assigned waitstaff). The itinerary was changed just before we embarked to visit Argostoli instead of Mykonos (not a big deal for us, but I can imagine the disappointment for someone having traveled from afar just for this visit). The visits and excursions were generally good, however very brief in some cases (Trieste is 4 hours at best). The excursions were very expensive for what they were offering (the exception being the visit of the caves of Postojna which was excellent). Case in point: the offered shuttle to take you from the cruise terminal in Corfu to the old town, is 10 euro per person. A taxi for the same distance (up to 4-5 people) is just 5 euro total. We traveled with our two children (pre-school age) who probably enjoyed it more than us adults. Costa seems to have taken the wrong approach, compared with their past. It used to be great value, great food, but now it seems that they are trying to compete on price on the initial ticket, and then attempt to monetize the rest after you board. The cost cutting is also obvious: no more free pizza, no more free ice cream, no more free water (outside the buffet restaurant), obvious reduction in staff (dining and cabin). Also the decision to automatically deduct the tips every day (instead of asking for it at the end) has probably an averse effect on the behavior of the crew in general - they are definitely trying, but honestly they are not really compelled to. I would probably try with a different Carnival brand, but overall our experience with Royal Caribbean was better. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
My girlfriend and I chose this cruise for its itinerary - places we had yet to visit - and price, it was a little cheaper than the competition for the itinerary and time. It was also the first time cruising with Costa, although I have 25+ ... Read More
My girlfriend and I chose this cruise for its itinerary - places we had yet to visit - and price, it was a little cheaper than the competition for the itinerary and time. It was also the first time cruising with Costa, although I have 25+ cruises in my history. We embarked in Venice, and the embarkation process was well-organized and smooth, although lengthy, we waited 2-hours before our number was called. Ship - it has all the essential and standard ingredients of a cruise ship with nothing special, when compared to other ships - no swimming pool slides, no climbing wall, no bowling alley, etc. It has pools and jacuzzis, bars and restaurants, etc. All well-kept, well-cleaned and the ship's public places are all nicely decorated and glitzy to provide a nice cruising experience. Cabin - We had an inside cabin in the front part on deck 4. The cabin is of reasonable size for a cruise ship. A little homework would have told us that this cabin sits right above the ship's theater on decks 2 and 3, an area to avoid if you like to take an occasional siesta or sleep early. During shows or practices (usually during siesta time) the cabin vibrates, shakes, and dances to the the loud music in the theater below, so during those times, you need to be out and about, or enjoying the show below. Dining - Here is where Costa definitely comes short. The buffet - reputed on all cruises as the place to eat an any time - is actually on a schedule, it opens a and closed at specific times just like the restaurants. So if you miss the dinner time assigned to you, or do not make it during the opening times, well, you need to wait until the next opening time to eat. There are no 24-hour places to eat on board. Coffee and water - On every other cruise lines I took, these are two drinks available 24/7. Not on Costa. Access is timed for coffee to breakfast time (7-11 in the buffet, 8-8:30 in the restaurant) and tea-time (4:00 to 5:30 pm). The rest of the time No Coffee! Not even in the restaurants at lunch or dinner. You will be invited to get you coffee from the bar (and pay for it, of course). If you scream and insist, they will tell you OK, then make you wait until you get tired and leave. Entertainment and activities - similar to all other cruises although I really like the Broadway style shows on this one. Service - The staff will tell you where to sit and where to go - do not expect any options or choice of table - it run like a summer camp. However, they will do it nicely. Ports and shore excursions - I have cruised enough to learn to avoid the ship's excursions and book my own with local tout operators (and save a bundle of money, while gaining much more flexibility) and usually take a nice walk around the city and a stop at a nice beach. Knowing all this, I will not cruise with Costa again, or if I do - I may forget - I will actually buy their drink package and include that cost when comparing prices with other cruise lines that actually do provide better all-inclusive services. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
Did the first 30 day leg of this cruise Savona to LA. Very poor communication on all aspects prior to cruise. Advertised drink packages confusing and mistranslated from Italian to English. In addition upon boarding discovered all ... Read More
Did the first 30 day leg of this cruise Savona to LA. Very poor communication on all aspects prior to cruise. Advertised drink packages confusing and mistranslated from Italian to English. In addition upon boarding discovered all wine, beer and water was free at lunch and dinner, nice surprise if you had already bought a drinks package. Boarding was shambolic, poor directions at port, no indication of where to go or where to deposit luggage. Once on board directed to level 9 for lunch but no indication that cabin was ready, only found out hours later from conversation with other guests after hanging around the buffet for ages. No option for dinner other than the 6pm (too early) or 8.30pm (too late) sittings, or pay for a pizza or burger on level 9. Suffered minor cold and sniffles, (which ran rampant around the ship) but forgot to pack any aspirin. None available on board unless you pay 62 Euros to consult the doctor, most expensive aspirin ever. By the way you could buy condoms, so no headaches please. Library cramped and books difficult to access, internet exorbitantly expensive, 99 Euro for 3GB, my home satellite package is 60GB for about 30Euro, so that is quite a mark up. Food average, and repetitive, cabins reasonable (had a balcony on level 8), evening shows fair to poor. On board crew helpful and trying, problem seems to be management incompetence and general penny pinching. No English language news except CCTV (China) and Korean TV. No CNN or BBC, yet multiple Italian,German, Spanish stations. Did have CNN and BBC for first day or so them mysteriously disappeared. Official line is technical problems but suspect it is about the Dollars Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
I’ve finally chosen a cruise with Costa Luminosa after considering the same route, activities onboard, food seletion with other cruise line companies such as Royal Carribean, Norwegian Cruise, Princess Cruise. I selected Costa due to ... Read More
I’ve finally chosen a cruise with Costa Luminosa after considering the same route, activities onboard, food seletion with other cruise line companies such as Royal Carribean, Norwegian Cruise, Princess Cruise. I selected Costa due to the reasonable price in comparison with Royal Cab and Norwegian (almost 1.5 times more expensive for the same cabin type, same route Stockholm - Helsinki -Tallin - Saint Peterburg), we then booked a balcony cabin with option of upgrading to a high class of cabin for free of charge. Luckily, we ended up in the Suite Balcony cabin which has more space, consists of a mini bar, and larger bathroom. Here are some pros and cons: Pros: The Costa Luminosa is not as big as Royal Oasis of the sea or Norwegian Epic (4-5000 pass), but the reason for me to vote for Costa is because of the Italian design. I love the way italian design the cabin (the toilet and the bathtub are located in the same room which is very convenient. In Norwegian epic, you would have toilet and shower in two seperated areas which is uncomfortable for me). Regarding the food, we have two options: buffet or the restaurant. The buffet is pretty normal and has the same level with other cruise ship. However I feel that the food in the restaurant is more fresh and more european than what we have had in Royal and Norwegian. Perhaps, we are prefer the european food than the american ones. Gala dinners are served well with typical italian food and the performance of italian staffs in the kitchen. Cons: Room is cleaned up everyday. However, the steward never refilled the shampoo and the bodywash, I had to call the room service to ask for that. Comparing to Royal Cab and Norwegian Cruise line, the activities on board in Costa Luminosa is very mediocre. Lack of evening shows, the swimming pool is too small. I did not bother to try one even I have already prepared my swimming suit. Quite a big surprise to me that the ice cream in Costa Luminosa is completely not free whereas it is totally free in other cruise lines. Well, I could mark it as the positive point in the review as I am trying to lose some weights at the moment. The staffs are friendly. However I would prefer to have more diversified community of staffs. In Costa Luminosa, more than 80% of staffs which I saw were Fillipinos even most of the engine staffs. I have no problem or whatsoever with Fillipino staffs as all of them were nice and very helpful. Nonetheless, in other ships, we have a better mix of Roumanies, Hungaries, Brazils,…with the Fillipinos. On the day the ship gets to the port, we have options of taking shuttle bus to the city centre, hop on/off bus (more expensive), or taking the tours which is organised by Costa. I am not very pleased with the information of port that Costa has given us. In many ports, the passengers do not have to take the shuttle bus to get into the city centre. Instead of that, they could have taken the local bus or just walk 10-15 mins. Costa did not supply any city map and did not give any hint to walk/take local bus to city centre. However, I always figure it myself as this is our 5th cruise. Once we get on the port, there is always information desk of the port, go ask them the direction and take the map with you. An alternative way is to ask the Hop on/off staffs, they are usually nice and friendly to guide you to walk to the city even you do not use their service. The ship was cruising on the Baltic sea and passing several scandinavian countries like Denmark, sweden, estonia, finland, and russia. One of the reason I took the cruise in baltic sea is because of Russia. I was so curious to explore and to see the real communist country like Russia after have watched/read so many things about this country in television and books. Saint peterburg is 2nd largest city in Russia. Frankly speaking, the impression of Russia in my mind now is not a very hospitality place. The traffic is bad, and gets worst when it rains. Buildings, bridges, and architecture is old but no way to compare to Paris. If you have enjoyed youself in charming beauty in Paris, then Saint Peterburg is not even close to be in the same league. The pick pocketing is everywhere. All things cost increadibly expensive as the russians want to make money over the tourist. The truth is that Russian economy is suffocating as the rouble (russian money) is felt off 50% its value in the last one year. The whole Russian nation is just based on the oil price. That’s the way how communist politicians run the country. After having heard some many warning regarding the pick pocketing, without any hesistation we took the tour organised by Costa to visit Saint peterburg in two days to visit some churchs, the Hermitage museum, the Neva river,…The Hermitage museum has been exagerated too much. This museum is no way in comparison with Le musee du Louvre in Paris. The atmosphere inside the museum is unbelievably chaotics. There were too many people, hundreds of touristic groups coming from different countries which made the environment event worst. It seems to me that there was no safe way for the foreigners to visit the Hermitage by their own, therefore 90% of the visitors join in the tour. The only positive thing is that you have free wifi in Hermitage. Thanks for that, I was able to go online after 2days because in all other places the russians charge around 2-3$ to use the wifi. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
I was part of a larger group, booked via Globetrotter so I really did travel with Costa by my own choise. (Aktiespararna, where I´m a member, had a 50 year anniversary cruise.) • The cabin was really excellent, spacious and fresh. ... Read More
I was part of a larger group, booked via Globetrotter so I really did travel with Costa by my own choise. (Aktiespararna, where I´m a member, had a 50 year anniversary cruise.) • The cabin was really excellent, spacious and fresh. Very few disturbing sounds. • The theatre, where we had two days of education, was poorly equipped; the resolution on the screen was terrible and it was impossible to read. • The service in Taurus was excellent but the food was not; we had two really nice dinners, and five average ones, which I found disappointing. • The breakfast buffé at Taurus was excellent but I was not happy with the fact that I could not have breakfast after 9,00. • I did found it disturbing to have a feeling of being thrown out from the restaurant. • The buffé restaurant Andromeda, was a bit chaotic and not so nice. • I was satisfied whit the offer of your drinking package ”Pio Gusto”. Good value! • The ship was nice with many really nice areas to sit down, read and have a drink. • The crew who where engaged with the excursions was not very service minded, and spoke a poor english. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
A last minute booking, but having been on Costa ships previously I had a good idea of what to expect. I liked the fact that there were only 13 English passengers on board and lots of interesting people to meet from around the world. The ... Read More
A last minute booking, but having been on Costa ships previously I had a good idea of what to expect. I liked the fact that there were only 13 English passengers on board and lots of interesting people to meet from around the world. The staff were polite, even under pressure, and were extremely hard working. The cabin was kept clean and serviced efficiently. It was pleasant having a 'dual aspect' balcony. Yes, from time to time the table service was slow and there were a few other small issues that would have made a good experience even better, for example free tea and coffee and being allowed to remain on board longer at the end of the cruise. However when taken as a whole it was a lovely holiday. I have read other reviews and people love to complain but i enjoyed my holiday and I would certainly cruise with Costa again. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2015
Costa Luminosa: 24.02.2015 Miami, Cozumel, Roatan, Jamaica, Caymans, Grand Turk, Nassau, Miami. The cruise was value for money and to be honest the ship was in really good shape and on a par with any other "mid range" ships we ... Read More
Costa Luminosa: 24.02.2015 Miami, Cozumel, Roatan, Jamaica, Caymans, Grand Turk, Nassau, Miami. The cruise was value for money and to be honest the ship was in really good shape and on a par with any other "mid range" ships we have been on. Balcony Cabin: as big if not bigger than anything else we have been on inc P&O, Celeb, Princess, Norwegian and RC. Tiny TV however with very limited channels in English and what there was, was pretty poor. Only interested in selling you movies not providing entertainment. Food: Yes portions are small but I am very, very fussy and there was plenty for me to choose from at dinner. Lunch buffet plenty of choice but tends to drift to pastas and cold meats, Italian based food on an Italian ship, just what you would expect. Breakfast, both English and Continental style no issues at all. Ice Cream: There is none, all machines unplugged and have been for months I was told. Take them away or sort them out. Entertainment: Poor show on this front, not a lot going on and what is going on is pretty poor. Huge TV on pool deck wasted, all it does it revolve round the same commercial paid advertisements over and over again, waste of a quality feature to save a few $. Staff: Overworked and I am sure underpaid, why do so many cruise going people behave so badly to the staff. Rude and ignorant customers who just can not bring themselves to say please or thank you to the staff. Tips: Pre-paid, not good for customers as staff don't have the incentive to do that little bit extra as you have already tipped them. Cancelled port Of Grand Turk: Too windy said the Captain so will go to the private Island owned by Carnival being Princess Quay, handy for them! I asked reception if I could have 2 minutes of email time as I needed to inform someone we were meeting on Grand Turk we would not be coming. No we don't give free email away was the reply, no compromise, no discussion, go away we are not interested, very very annoying and a silly thing to do after the Captain changed the plans. Would have cost pennies and a happy customer there would be. Very annoying as the day before they allowed me to use the ships phone "for free" to sort out my Credit card which had been refused for authorization to Costa for security reasons, then again they would not have been paid. A beautiful ship with good staff but a cruise line which penny pinches on things it should it not. If you want water with your dinner you have to pay for it, If you want to play table tennis you have to buy the ping pong balls and hire the bats, if you want to play golf (very poor golf) you have to pay ,if you want to try the car racing get your cruise card ready you know what is coming. Value for money cruise with some annoying traits which could be easily resolved but guess what nothing will change as long as people keep cruising with them. I would superb value for money.   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2015
I have been on several cruises on many other cruise lines so I thought I knew what to expect. This trip was very different. Boarding began at 3 pm and the ship was to depart at 11 pm. (The ship didn't leave until 3 am as they held it ... Read More
I have been on several cruises on many other cruise lines so I thought I knew what to expect. This trip was very different. Boarding began at 3 pm and the ship was to depart at 11 pm. (The ship didn't leave until 3 am as they held it for some passengers who had not arrived on time). I had already been warned that at 3 pm, it would be a mob scene so we stalled boarding until after 7 pm. Unloaded the luggage at the curb and parked in the $20.00/day lot at the Port of Miami. Boarding was smooth and simple, but we soon realized we were among a very few that spoke English. The announcements and the games and shows were primarily in Italian, and even the "English speaking crew" were hard to understand. Our cabin was great. Clean and adequate for the 3 of us (the balcony helped a lot and became our sitting space. Beds have no top sheets, but linens are changed every 3 days, and the cabin steward was excellent. After boarding, we went to eat dinner, and found only a buffet which was nothing fancy but acceptable. Unfortunately, this was the only night they had a buffet. If you don't eat in the dining room at your scheduled dinner seating, you will go hungry until morning as they offer NO other food but very costly and limited menu room service. You can also buy a soggy crust personal pizza for $9.00 until 10 pm,.... not very good. I recommend the late seating at 9:15 pm, as you may not make it back in time for the early seating at 6:30 if you go ashore on port days. The food in the dining room was ok, mostly pasta dishes and always minestrone soup. The meats where generally very rare, and very thin cuts, often very tough. The fish dishes were decent. Portions are small so order several courses. Service was excellent. On a couple occasions, some of the staff put on a hip hop show which was terrific. They did not warn us that they had a WHITE night, where white clothing was expected, nor did we know that there was an Italian night dress event. Breakfast was in dining room or buffet, but essentially it was the same food. Decent breakfast pastries, yogurt, fruits, cereals, VERY wet scrambled eggs and bacon or sausage. They had an omelet station as well. There are not enough tables for everyone so get a table before getting in line to eat. In the dining room, we noticed eggs benedict. Huge fail, as the eggs were hard boiled, set on an untoasted piece of bread, with sauce that was orange and gross, (not hollandaise for sure). Lunch is buffet, mostly Italian lunch meats and pasta, or pizza. Many days they had burgers and fries on the deck as an option. Fries were very good, burgers were just ok. The soft serve ice cream machines were never turned on. If you want coffee, tea, or even a glass of water or ice, get it at meal times because they shut it all off after and you can't get any. The casino was awful. One blackjack table, one Caribbean stud poker table, and one 3 card poker table were open each night. They had 1-2 roulette tables open and several slot machines but no one ever seemed to win at any games and there were very few players. The casino staff was nice but the casino was small and quiet. They had other tables but they were never opened as the staff was too small. Smoking is not allowed in the casino nor in almost all areas of the ship. They offer "smoking areas" on a couple decks, but they were so thick with smoke it looked like fog as these rooms were not ventilated. Smoking is outside on some of the decks only. Costa says you cannot bring food or beverages onto the ship. I like Diet Coke, and they only serve Pepsi products. I found out later that many people carried on drinks in plastic containers as they don't show up on scanners (only metal does). Once you go ashore, they allow you to bring back sealed snacks and even a few canned drinks (just not alcohol). We did not buy the drink packages as we are not big drinkers and the packages don't include many choices. On the first night, I ordered a bottle of wine for $32.00 and they put a tag on it with my name and it was in my table for dinner each night. Since purified water is free from the water machines at the buffet, and they use bottled water at the dining room, (which you can take back to your cabin), I bought a large water bottle and filled it with ice water at each meal for in between meals. Cocktails were $7.00 to $12.00 each on board. Ports were good. Most of the time we docked, but a couple times we had to get a ticket (free but a hassle)for the tender to take us ashore because they anchored out. People who bought ship excursions got priority. We bought our own excursions online before leaving for half the price, and found them uncrowded, while the ships ones were packed. Shopping in Cozumel was excellent. We hired a driver for 2 hours for $20.00 a person who took us around. (go left out the port, walk a block and you will find a booth offering drivers). We ate $1.00 tacos on the streets, bought fresh fruit from street vendors, then went to a small area with a church and ruins at Cedral. The shops there were fun and we never paid more than 60% of the asking price. Black coral and tequila, as well as handcrafted pottery were the bargains. You can sample several tequilas. After that, a drive to the beach for a quick visit and it was time to head back. 2 hours was more than enough unless you are a serious shopper. You really can't walk to anything, so I recommend you negotiate a driver and know where you want to go. We had super delicious banana margaritas at Panchos Backyard, but the Mexican food was not very tasty there. Roatan, Honduras was fun, and a good place to shop, as they had many shops with trinkets, ( mostly wood carvings, real and costume jewelry, and Lenca pottery......not as nice as Cozumel's handcrafted pottery). Always offer half, they usually take it or close to it. This is where you can get bargains. Look around before you buy. The ice cream kiosk was delicious. We went zip lining in Roatan .There are smaller zip lines close to the port but the one we booked included an air conditioned bus ride up a mountain and a great scenic tour by guide Alfred on the way to the ziplines that took us almost all the way around the island. Alfred even took us to the downtown and asked if we wanted to get out and shop there. It cost $40.00/person for the tour and the ziplines which were over 100 ft. high above the jungle with about a dozen platforms. They had monkeys at the base camp that you could hold and take photos with. The zip lines were fast and high, perfect for adults but there are quite a few stairs and some hiking so I would not recommend this for children, elderly, or those who tire easily. The Caymans were expensive, and unless you want expensive jewelry, forget shopping there. We booked the submarine ride which was very nice and just a couple buildings away from the port where the ship's tender drops you off. They ferry you by boat to a submarine that goes more than 100 ft. below the surface along the reef and past a wreck for about an hour or more. We saw many beautiful fish and sea turtles. Our cost was about $88.00/person while the ship charges $139.00. We went to a place called Paradise (on the beach) for lunch- a burger, fries, and a soda for 3 people and the cost was $67.00 (pricey!). You need to plan to get a tender back before the last tender, as everyone jammed to get on the last one, and there was a long line in the hot sun that people just rudely cut into and we were jammed in like sardines. In the Turks, there is chaos at the taxi stand as they have set destinations and squeeze 14-16 people into every van. We wanted to go to the lighthouse at Lil Bluff and it was $9.00/person each way. We asked about a driver and were told we could only go on an organized tour for $20.00/person. We were in the back of a hot van bouncing in and out of potholes looking out the steamed up windows at the wild horses and burros when the van crapped out. To make matters worse, it began to rain hard. The driver finally got us going and we got to the lighthouse for a 15 minute stop in the rain which was really nothing worth seeing but it was the only time we got to get out of the cramped van. The Turks did not impress me, and I was glad to get back on the ship as there was really very little to do, and the shopping was poor. I discovered later that you can rent a car for $60.00 for up to 6 hours and go wherever you want, which would have been better for the 3 of us. In Jamaica, the dock was in the middle of nowhere. You had to hire a cab to go anywhere. The drivers take you to shops where the merchandise always looks the same and the vendors are quite aggressive. There really isn't much time to go far so forget Dunn's falls or the big cities. You can get a tour for $30.00 a person and see a small waterfall, an do some shopping near the beach. We paid a driver $50.00 for a quick tour. We went downtown (ate jerk chicken at Marley's which was delicious), went to a supermarket for snacks to bring onboard, and bought some perfumes and some junk souvenirs (t-shirts etc.). Nassua gives you many options of things to do. We decided to go to Atlantis and made the mistake of taking the water taxi, which leaves you off to walk several blocks. It was the same $4.00/person as the regular taxi shuttle but the taxi van takes you right to the door of Atlantis. We left Atlantis and took a cab to the Pilot House POOP DECK which has fantastic seafood (especially grouper fingers and cracked conch), and the biggest and best burgers I have even seen! Prices were reasonable, and service in the Bahamas is slow everywhere but with the fabulous views from the Poop Deck we were in no hurry. Back onboard, the bingo games were in many languages, but at $10.00/card for one $1000.00 game with several hundred players, these weren't good odds. The shows we saw were like amateur hour, with some so-so singers and dancers but not the quality of shows on other ships. The duty free on the ship is more expensive than when you go to the duty free shops ashore, so I don't recommend buying onboard. We arrived back in Miami at 7 am but were given purple luggage tags. Or time to get off was assigned to 10:30 am but we were put out of the cabin at 8:30 am so we sat in a crowded room with hundreds of others waiting for purple to be called. It was not called until well after 11 am, and then we stood in long lines after finding our luggage to go through immigration and customs. They do not separate US/Canadian citizens from others (as they do on other cruises.). They have to do fingerprints, eye scans and much more for non US/Canadian citizens and it takes some time. For US citizens, these are not required. We did not get out of the port until well after 12:30 so if you have a flight to catch, allow plenty of time. Forget using your cabin telephone. NO ONE answers but room service. Our shower overflowed and flooded our cabin and we had to go to guest services and stand in line to get it unclogged. Also, do not use your cell phone at any time (even in Miami) while on the ship as you still pay ship rates until you are out of the port building. All in all, it was a fun trip but I would recommend that Costa do better with both the quality of food and the time it is available. At least there should be 24 hour coffee, tea, juice and water and at least some cookies or snacks. More buffets and a better selection would help. It would also be nice if the casino was better staffed. The shows could be greatly improved. The time in some ports was a little short. Announcements (which you can only hear in the hallways) seemed way too often and were usually non-comprehensible. People fill the hallways with baby strollers rather than taking them into their cabins you have to squeeze by. I think I will stick with Royal Caribbean in the future. When you get down to it, the value is much better for what you get.   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
Travel Arrangements The check-in process was not intuitive, the Air France flight check-in was not easy as the link was to the Italian version of the Air France website not easy to navigate, but achieved with the help of Google ... Read More
Travel Arrangements The check-in process was not intuitive, the Air France flight check-in was not easy as the link was to the Italian version of the Air France website not easy to navigate, but achieved with the help of Google Accommodation The cabin was not as big as we had expected, the bed was comfortable but the finish reminded us of a mobile home with veneered fitted furniture to maximise space and storage with cupboards finishing at angles back to the wall. The toilet/shower room was very small with what appeared to be plastic moulded sink and shower which while functional didn't look very appealing. The bed was probably 350mm from the external wall/door to the balcony, barely enough room to get round. Meals The waiter service was good and the waiters were very pleasant if a little incompetent on occasions. The two set meals times were either to early or to late, we were allocated a 18.15 meal time which was too early when we had been out on excursions for the day but speaking with other passengers at the later meal time they were not finishing until nearly 11 o'clock, too late for us with children, more flexibility is needed. The quality of the food was acceptable, the variety of main courses was ok however often not hot enough, the deserts were very repetitive. The main problem with the restaurant was the lack of tables, at breakfast and lunchtimes and on returning from excursions we regularly had to hunt for a vacant table sometimes doing two or three circuits before being successful. None of the ice cream machines worked for the entire cruise. Bars The drinks were general good, however the waiting staff with the exception of two or three, were metronomic with little or no interest in customer service or engaging with customers other than to take payment for a drink. Entertainment The shows in the theatre were probably not as polished as we were expecting, the entertainment activities around the pool were the sort of thing you would expect to find at a generic British holiday camp, the music in the bars was generally good. our ten year old went to the children's club and thoroughly enjoyed the activities, we were also impressed with the long hours the club was open. Excursions We only did two excursions, we found ourselves waiting around for over half an hour after the designated departure time. The only Costa representative was at the port, on both occasions we were put on a bus with no further explanation of what to expect. Once we found our way off the bus at the excursions the tour guides were excellent on both occasions, the Costa staff were not so helpful or informative. And finally.... The overall cruise experience did not live up to our expectations, we disliked the fixed evening meal time and the feeling of always wanting to be in the same place as 3000 other people, lack of space, attitude of staff and standard of cabin when related to the cost, behind the fancy lighting and decor in the public spaces we would rate it as a three star hotel experience at a five star price.   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2014
Overall the cruise was good…but nothing special to write about. It has been a while since my last cruise (I have cruised on both Carnival and Royal Caribbean in the past) so I knew what to expect but was aware things may be a little ... Read More
Overall the cruise was good…but nothing special to write about. It has been a while since my last cruise (I have cruised on both Carnival and Royal Caribbean in the past) so I knew what to expect but was aware things may be a little different now. The ship was as expected, elegantly decorated and the room was very spacious and well kept (we had a premium balcony). I was most cautious about smoking areas, which were never a factor, and the mentality of Europeans, which were not as rude as some reviews had reported, however I am very well versed in European cultural and have learned how to fit in (for example, lines don't really exist and if there is a space between you and the person in front of you they will squeeze). The boat vibrated A LOT and it didn't matter where we were on it. The food was okay at best and I was prepared for not the greatest food. It was not available all the time and having the late seating at 2130, we would want a pre-dinner "snack" but it was tough to get food some afternoons without planning our schedule around food availability. The service wasn't as attentive as I had remembered in the past. I am not sure if this due to cruise line itself or the automatic tipping policy cruise lines now incorporate. The ports were great, embarking and disembarking went smoothly. Would I go on Costa again? Maybe, if the times worked with my inflexible schedule and went to the ports I wanted to see. Would I recommend Costa? No, but I wouldn't tell people not to go either. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2014
Our Baltic/Norway cruise was July 5-19. Luminosa is a beautiful newer ship and our room was very nice. Costa still has a way to go to get me back. - Charging for water at dinner was unbelievable. - Same for yoga and spinning sessions ... Read More
Our Baltic/Norway cruise was July 5-19. Luminosa is a beautiful newer ship and our room was very nice. Costa still has a way to go to get me back. - Charging for water at dinner was unbelievable. - Same for yoga and spinning sessions (13 Euros each time). - Want pizza after 6:30....then pay extra. - Want a nice dinner....reserve a table at their special restaurant for 25 Euros each person. - Want room service....pay extra. - If you want food available at any time go somewhere else because there is no 24 X 7 food. The dining room food was ok but not great - the service was very good however. When in port you are pretty much on your own as no port information provided either before hand or at the dock is to tell you where the ship docks, public transportation available etc. Seems like Costa is pushing their excursions and shuttles. They were very efficient in handling the excursions and do a nice job getting people off the ship quickly. Beware that there will not be many English speakers, we had less than 100 out of 2200. Wasn't a major problem but can impact English excursion options. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2014
If you are English speaking from the United States, do not consider this cruise line unless you enjoy being treated as a second class citizen. The passengers were predominately from Italy, France, Germany and Spain with few English ... Read More
If you are English speaking from the United States, do not consider this cruise line unless you enjoy being treated as a second class citizen. The passengers were predominately from Italy, France, Germany and Spain with few English speaking guests. This was our tenth cruise and we will never, ever book with Costa again. Food was nowhere near as good as all the other cruises we've been on. At the buffet we had green molded roll, toast with ants crawling on it, and in the main restaurant, even was served sour milk which the waiter tried to tell us was just the cream. Cream doesn't curdle on top your coffee and tea! It was only after we insisted he take it away and bring up new cups and milk, that he did so. In the main restaurant, at no time did the waiter ever come over and inquire if everything was OK. Even after we told him we didn't care for an item, did he offer to replace it with something else. Any meat that required carving was over cooked and tough. Even on formal nights there was no steak or lobster served. In fact if you ordered anything with shrimp you were served those miniscule shrimp that can be purchased in a can. Forget lobster bisque, french onion soup, etc. - never on the menu, but you could have their version of watered down minestrone soup everyday. And forget any speciality desserts like bananas forester, baked Alaska,pie ala mode etc. Ice cream, gelato, sherbet and one cake is the offering each night. You can order a drink package which can be purchased in advance for $260 pp which is supposed to include water, soda , liquor, wine, coffee and teas which we did. What they don't tell you is it doesn't include a bottle of water or can of soda that you can take off the ship during excursions. Only a glass of water or soda is included. You can purchase a bottle of water for an additional $5 each. They then give you a limited menu of alcholic drinks that are included. You can have a Margarita, but a strawberry Margarita will be an additional $6.50. Room service is also supposed to be included. It only includes coffee and tea in the morning and were surprised when we ordered their miniature danish and was charged $15. The buffet area was very large and extensive. Other than the green molded roll, and ants on the toast it was quite good. Plenty of choices for everyone for breakfast and lunch. We never ate there in the evening. Maybe that would have been a bette choice than their main dining room. The ship itself was beautiful and kept immaculately clean. We left a small tip each day for the housekeeper even though tips are automatically charged to you room so we always had enough towels and found our room was one of the first to be cleaned. We had a veranda stateroom and it was quite roomy and more than adequate closet and drawer space. The water in the shower and bathroom sink did have a strange odor that I never found on any other the other cruises I was on. The ports we visited were very nice and most of them allowed enough time for an excursion, beach visit and shopping. This was my second Costa cruie, but it will be my last.   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2013
My wife and I just got off the ten day Caribbean cruise on Costa Luminosa. The itinerary was terrific, and the overall price was quite reasonable. Being the first time on Costa we were quite disappointed with the levels of service ... Read More
My wife and I just got off the ten day Caribbean cruise on Costa Luminosa. The itinerary was terrific, and the overall price was quite reasonable. Being the first time on Costa we were quite disappointed with the levels of service (especially food service) and the actual food served (even in the alternative dining room). This was our 18th cruise, but our first on Costa. The food was not up to the standards of the cruise industry, and the service was slow and not good at all. The waiters seemed to feel powerless about fixing problems with the food, and they caused us to feel they did not care. In the Lido deck the service was never in the same place, even during a single meal. You might get your food in one place, but had to visit another if you wanted to select another choice. We will never cruise on Costa again. Although the price was good, we kept saying (and hearing) you "only" get what you pay for. Even in the alternative dining room, they charged $32.50 to eat there, but added prices for coffee or tea. Extra charges for room service too. even pay per view movies, and no free movies unless you want to watch one in Italian. They tried to charge us for water in the alternative dining room and I refused to pay for that. Too bad, because the ship itself was quite nice, and the entertainment was too. Our Veranda Cabin was very nicely set up and kept clean, although the sheets were not replaced until the seventh night. Our sheets got soiled somehow, but they were not replaced until the seventh night. Our cabin steward was helpful, but seldom seen. He spoke our language well and we genuinely liked him. We gave him an envelope with a sizeable tip, but we did not tip the food service people well at all. I went to the front desk and refused to accommodate the ship's approach of assessing the daily fee of $11.00 per passenger per day. They required me to give a written statement, and even show both passports in order to accomplish that, but we felt it was the only way we could demonstrate our displeasure with the service levels we received. For us - it was distracting to hear every announcement in four languages, and to sit at meals with people who did not speak our language. We would have preferred to eat alone, rather than to sit with people with whom we could not communicate. It felt awkward and we wondered if they felt we were being rude by not talking with them. The porters broke the handle on my luggage. When I complained - they did a poor repair job, and then when we left the ship the handle broke and the porters dropped my bag and broke the wheels too. Now I have a bag with broken handle AND two broken wheels. In my personal assessment the employees on the ship were basically good, and wanting to do the right things. It seems the management and leadership is where Costa went wrong. I can see that it might be useful for Europeans to be on a ship where they hear every announcement in four languages, but that was overdone. We stood for quite a long time while the life-boat drill was presented in four languages, including the life jacket being re-demonstrated each time. It was hot and very uncomfortable and took way too long. RCL, Princess, Holland America, Celebrity, Disney, or Windstar - Oh Yes. Costa - Never again. Sorry Costa. You earned this feedback.   Read Less
Sail Date: November 2013
We were very impressed with the ship when we boarded. This went rapidly down hill when we realised Costa had such a bad Smoking Policy. All areas had smoking areas, but the problem was that non-smokers were overwhelmed by the smoke from ... Read More
We were very impressed with the ship when we boarded. This went rapidly down hill when we realised Costa had such a bad Smoking Policy. All areas had smoking areas, but the problem was that non-smokers were overwhelmed by the smoke from these areas. Every night we went to our cabin smelling of smoke. I caught a cold after a couple of days, which was made worse by cigarette smoke. To add to our distaste withe the public areas, in the 2nd week there was an overwhelming smell of sewage! Particularly in the region of the bar in the Atrium, the Casino and the Bar Electra, where the majority of the activities were held. I was not impressed with the lack of eating choices in the evening. If you didn't want to eat in the dining room, the only other option was buffet pizza with grown, wilted green leaves. However, the waitress served pizza after 9.30 pm was good. There were a choice of 4 individual pizzas, but no sides were available. Cabin was spacious and well-appointed. It was class as a premium cabin which cost £45 pp extra. This gives you free room service and choice of dining time. But once you chose your dining time either Early or Late, there was no further choice. So to say you could chose when you eat is nit accurate. On the plus side, the staff were excellent. Everyone was pleasant and helpful. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2013
As a prelude to our CIE eight-day bus tour around Great Britain, my wife and I recently decided to do a short Mediterranean cruise and booked what seemed like a good deal from Costa Cruise Lines. I generally like to arrive at least a day ... Read More
As a prelude to our CIE eight-day bus tour around Great Britain, my wife and I recently decided to do a short Mediterranean cruise and booked what seemed like a good deal from Costa Cruise Lines. I generally like to arrive at least a day in advance to rest and recuperate from jet lag before embarking on a scheduled tour, and I thought a few days on an ocean liner would give us the perfect R&R to rejuvenate us for the trip to come. Unfortunately, the cruise was not nearly as relaxing as we'd hoped. We flew into Nice from LAX, with a layover in JFK, totaling about 20 grueling hours of transit time from home to the hotel. We arrived about 11am, which would have given us barely enough time to make our scheduled 12:45pm Costa shuttle from Nice to Savona. If we missed the shuttle, we'd have to take a very expensive taxi ride to Savona, Italy, where our cruise was to begin. That connection was too close for comfort, so for our peace of mind, we chose to come a day early and just relax at our hotel for the night. The next day we went back to the airport and boarded our Costa shuttle and took the two-hour ride to our ship, the Costa Luminosa. The porters took our bags from the shuttle and had put them in our room by the time we checked in. Very convenient, and about the best service we got on this particular voyage. I’ve taken at least 15 cruises all around the world, and Costa’s check-in process was the strangest I’ve seen. We got a group number when we exited the bus and had to wait until our group was called before we could get in line to check in. As they got closer to our number, we sat by the entrance to the line and watched a bunch of people queue up that did not have the correct number. We they finally called our number, we fought our way into the line, and the desk clerks checked our tickets and passports before sending us to a table where they kept our passports. They offered us no room keys or literature on policies and provided no place to file our credit card information to pay for incidental expenses. At last, we made it to our room and found our keys waiting there for us along with our luggage. By then, the crew was about to begin the emergency drill, so we took our life jackets and tried to find our assigned section. There were no employees to direct people, and passengers wandered around aimlessly trying to find out where to go. After a meandering search, we finally found our section, which was empty except for the crew. It took another 15 minutes or so for other passengers to locate the meeting area, and the protracted drill process began. There were long announcements in several languages, which killed a great deal of time before we were at last dismissed and able to head back to our room. This disorganization worried us, given the deadly ordeal with the Costa Concordia, the liner that sank last year. I can now see why there were so many casualties. If one of these ships goes down again, the situation would be pretty much "every man for himself," since the crew offer little guidance or assistance in preparing passengers for emergencies. Overall, we found that most of the staff rarely smiled, were not friendly, and were not very helpful in general. There’s no documentation on tipping, on the pricing of the premium restaurants, or other basic facts passengers should know. The food is adequate, nothing great; I would rate the cuisine a little below that of a Carnival weekend Mexico cruise. It seemed like the wait staff lacked help, or perhaps Europeans simply serve their meals at a much more leisurely pace than I'm used to. I don’t think the waiter ever smiled, and he never spoke except to take our order. We actually preferred the buffets since we could eat without waiting a long time for our food to come out, and the food was about the same quality as in the main restaurant. The worst part of the cruise was getting off the ship to visit Barcelona. The exasperating lines were made worse by the fact that many of the European passengers (mostly Italians) did not respect the etiquette of the queue. If I didn’t block off the space next to me, someone would cut ahead in line. The cutters would push their way forward as far as they could go until the front of the line became so clotted that no one else could squeeze past. We became so incensed that we were on the verge of head-butting people to hold our place. Sorry, old lady, but maybe you’ll learn some manners after an elbow to the face! The second port of Marseille proved a better experience because we waited 15 minutes until the lines had dissipated. We then took the shuttle bus into town and queued up for a shuttle tour of the city. The shuttle service was evidently a very small operation, for the driver himself opened the ticket booth after dropping off the previous passengers. To no surprise, another family of Italians cut their way in front of us and ended up taking the last four seats together on the shuttle. After that, it was no more Mr. Nice Guy! I became determined to cut in front of everyone else in all future lines, since that’s evidently the way things are done along the Mediterranean. As they say, "When in Rome, do as the rude Italians do!" We stopped at Notre Dame to take a look around--that's the Basilica de Notre Dame de la Garde, not the cathedral in Paris with the Hunchback--and I got some really nice shots of the city of Marseille and the coast below. When we returned to the shuttle area, there was a huge line, way too many people to fit on the next shuttle. We cut our way near the front of the line and waited. Once the shuttle arrived, most people in line ran to get seats, and the whole crowd yelled at them. Apparently, cutting is only okay to the Europeans if they're the ones doing the cutting. Nevertheless, the shuttle driver loaded the shuttle with people from the front of the line, and since we cut near the front, my wife and I were able to get seats together. We were rewarded for being as obnoxious as the Italians! I'd read other reviews from Americans who'd had similar complaints, and most said that seven days of such frustration was too much. I figured a three-day cruise would be tolerable, and this one fit our schedule and was very inexpensive. On the positive side, we were able to see some nice cities along the Mediterranean, but the quality of food, service, and passengers left much to be desired. Without question, the highlights of the cruise were the ports of Barcelona and Marseille. They’re both beautiful cities, with much more to see than we could do justice to in the six hours we had during our shore leave from the ship. I hope someday to spend at least three to five days in each city. We may be spoiled from our recent Viking and Uniworld river cruises, which each had under 200 passengers. With about 3000 people, a good percentage of whom were pushy and rude, this voyage just wasn't as pleasant as a nice, quiet, and relaxing river cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2013
I was disappointed in many aspects but perhaps my expectations were off for a European line. I haven't cruised that much, I went for the scenery (Fjords) and convenience of a cruise. I was taken aback by how much Costa pushed the bars ... Read More
I was disappointed in many aspects but perhaps my expectations were off for a European line. I haven't cruised that much, I went for the scenery (Fjords) and convenience of a cruise. I was taken aback by how much Costa pushed the bars and the drinks. They did a good job on some other things, but it was clear where their priorities lay. The shore excursions were generally good. The dining room food was very good, but small portions, so order a lot. The self-service restaurant food was very good at lunch, but severely limited between lunch and dinner. But often too crowded and hard to find a table. The wifi was terrible. Pricey and poor quality, could only surf, all uploads failed. THe library was barely adequate. The Costa people were nice, but the other guests were generally quite rude. Probably standard fare for European cruise, but don't expect people to respect lines, or let you get out of the elevator. Quite a bit of smoking, it is allowed indoors on the ship too. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2010
I fancied going away for my birthday to Dubai and was looking at going on the Brilliance of the seas but saw a brilliant deal 80% off on a cruise only direct with Costa cruises website a week before departure. Booked a B5 balcony cabin on ... Read More
I fancied going away for my birthday to Dubai and was looking at going on the Brilliance of the seas but saw a brilliant deal 80% off on a cruise only direct with Costa cruises website a week before departure. Booked a B5 balcony cabin on deck 6 mid ship. Had to phone up the call centre as there were technical problems with the website but the lady booked the cruise quickly and efficiently and let me pick out a cabin myself. I booked direct flights with Emirates and used my Marriott hotel points to stay at the Renaissance Deira hotel the night before embarkation. I would definitely recommend flying the day before if you can as there were guests that arrived at 7.00am on the morning of embarkation. It was a long day for them as they could not get into their cabins until 18.30. The flight over with Emirates was excellent, I choose the 9.45 from Gatwick which landed at approx 20.35 in Dubai on Friday. Went to Duty free, grabbed a taxi and it was a short ride to the hotel. We just relaxed round the pool and had a mooch round Deira the day of embarkation as the check in time for the cruise was 15.00. The time you could go to your cabin was 18.30. The hotel extended our check out till 15.00 so we made our way to the ship then and checked in. Check in was efficient, there was nobody else checking in so we just walked straight on with no queues. We were carrying a large bottle of water on board as it was so hot. We got to the gangway and the security guard was very rude saying "I will tell you now, you are not allowed THAT on board"!. Saying it like a bottle of water was some banned illegal substance! Luckily for us it was the wrong gangway to use for getting on the ship so we went to the next gangway and walked on no problems. Little did that security guard know we had 4 bottle of duty free vodka and enough cans of soft drink in our suit cases to last the whole trip, ha ha. We just sat in the sun till 6.30pm and then went to our cabin and our suitcases arrived shortly after. I was very pleased with the cabin, it was larger than other balcony cabins I have been in with a good sized balcony and lovely beds. The cabin attendant was a bit surly, normally they knock and say hello, but this one just seemed to not be bothered, we would often return to our cabin around midday to 1pm and the cabin was still not made up despite us always using the make up room/do not disturb signs. Even with the do not disturb sign on the door, he would still knock and walk straight in the room! On departure we said thank you and goodbye to him and he just stared at us with a blank face like we were an inconvenience! Oh well!. I did not really care for the buffet. The choices were very limited. Only some orange runny scrambled egg, really cheap awful sausages and bacon etc for breakfast. We tried the dining room for breakfast but it was just the same as the buffet and you still had to serve yourself which I just thought was pointless and there was even less room than in the buffet trying to get in between tables and people walking about. Food was very oily and salty. Some things were almost inedible and I am not a fussy eater at all. The evening meal in the restaurant was much nicer but again the waiters were a bit surly. We had to ask for menus after being seated for a while and there was no interaction as there have been on other cruise lines. I feel that as Costa has a compulsory service charge, the staff feel that they can give the minimum service. I just need the point out that the pizza and the watery ice cream from the machines were awful. I don't understand this as the Italians are renown for their amazing pizza and ice cream! We did try the Club Luminosa on my birthday which was much nicer. There is a 20 Euro Surcharge each for this. The dessert was great, Ice cream made with liquid nitrogen in front of you!, and a birthday cake was brought out to me which was very nice. A bit strange though that as we were finishing our desserts/drinks a questionnaire and a pen was trust under our faces to rate the experience which sort of killed the ambiance. I don't know why they just couldn't of waited and delivered it to the cabin or something! The wine was very mediocre, 28 Euros for a bottle of Pinot Grigio. The ports I liked best were Abu Dhabi and Dubai. There is not much to do in Fujairah and Bahrain. I thought it would have been a much better cruise if the ship had docked for 2 days in Abu Dhabi as there was so much to do and there was a lovely beach there. We used the Big bus tours in Abu Dhabi and Dubai and these were very good. We also used shuttle buses in Fujairah and Abu Dhabi. These were charged at 6 euros each by Costa but when we got to the buses nobody checked the tickets. By the next day in Abu Dhabi we found out the shuttle buses are apparently free and run by the local tourist boards! Terrible!. The Arabian party was quite fun. Guests were dressed up in Arabian dress which you could pick up quite cheaply in Fujairah. Something I need to point out is the decking. On other ships I have been on there has been the non slip rubber on the decks. This ship did not have this. By the mini golf course there is a small fountain that seemed to be spraying water every where else apart from on the golf course. There was water all over the deck and was very dangerous. My husband slipped over twice there, and I saw many other people slipping over too. I too slipped over by the buffet due to the slippery floors.A member of buffet staff just looked at me on the floor and walked past! I am 26 and my husband is 33 and we both fell over at different times, I would dread to think what would have happened to an elderly/disabled person. Costa really needs to address this before some bad accident occurs. I made it known to them but they did not seem too bothered and only put up a slippery surface notice instead of actually fixing the fountain and mopping up the pools of water on the deck. We only went to one show. The first night was Chinese acrobatics which was very good. We heard off other people though that the shows were not too good so we did not bother going again. The majority of guests on board are Italian and we only came across a handful of English speaking guests. Disembarkation was great. You are requested to leave your luggage outside your door 5 hours before you disembark and you can used your cabin until 16.30. We got up, left our luggage outside the cabin and did a big bus tour around Dubai. There is a big bus tour shuttle which takes you to Bur Dubai to connect with the Big Bus. We got dropped back at the ship, grabbed our luggage and got a taxi to the crowne plaza festival city. We stayed for 1 night, (this hotel was fabulous) and flew home on the 15.45 to Heathrow no problems. I feel that the cruise reflected the cheap price we paid. If we had paid the brochure price I would have felt very annoyed and ripped off. I guess I have been spoilt with Celebrity, princess etc. I would not cruise with Costa again. If I was cruising this area again I would definitely go with Royal Caribbean. Even Thomson is in a far higher league than Costa. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2010
We had great ports on this cruise and really enjoyed seeing a different part of the world. The ship was beautiful and the rooms very comfy. The huge drawback is that the food was truly AWFUL. We have cruised with Disney and Carnival and we ... Read More
We had great ports on this cruise and really enjoyed seeing a different part of the world. The ship was beautiful and the rooms very comfy. The huge drawback is that the food was truly AWFUL. We have cruised with Disney and Carnival and we know that there are limitations to what you can prepare for large groups. That said, we never once had a meal in the main dining room that we liked. The best we could muster was a meal we tolerated. I sent back many dishes completely untouched- even desserts- and I am so not that girl. Shipboard entertainment was not much to speak of, largely because they have 7 languages on board so they are pretty limited in what they can do. As far as the excursions went- we did one in every port. In Muscat, we did the Nizwa fort and really enjoyed our day. Great tour guide, got to see a lot, really lovely poolside lunch. Highly recommended. In Fujeirah we did the desert 4X4 tour. Again, great excursion- not for the faint of heart though. I don't think I quite understood how high the dunes would be! This was a good port for this excursion since there is not much else to do there. In Abu Dhabi we did the city tour and tea at the Emirates Palace. The tea was awesome, and we got a great introduction to the city. I do wish we had ditched the tour after the cultural center and taken a taxi to the Marina Mall rather than going all the way back to the port and going out on our own from there. In Bahrain we did the city tour, it was a little long and we had a boring guide. They also do not have lunch built into this tour- ridiculous since we left the ship at 9 and did not get back until after 3. We kind of bucked the tour plans and grabbed lunch at the sandwich shop at the fort. Food was REALLY good there, but we had to just decide to do it on our own and I think it made the guide mad. All in all, if I could do this route with another cruise line I would. I will NOT be taking another Costa cruise unless I'm looking for massive weight loss from really bad food. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2010
Costa Luminosa, Dubai 30th Jan - 6th Feb 2010. We booked a fly/Hotel/Cruise package with Virgin Holidays Cruises, a sister company of Virgin Holidays but they wouldn't accept Tesco clubcard vouchers. We flew out on the 25th ... Read More
Costa Luminosa, Dubai 30th Jan - 6th Feb 2010. We booked a fly/Hotel/Cruise package with Virgin Holidays Cruises, a sister company of Virgin Holidays but they wouldn't accept Tesco clubcard vouchers. We flew out on the 25th overnight to Dubai with Virgin Atlantic and then stayed 4 nights in the Hilton resort and Spa in Ras al Khaimah, about 60kms north of Dubai. Nice resort but nothing else there and main Restaurant is buffet only and popular with families! I picked up a stomach bug on day 2 which lasted for the rest of the trip! We were transferred to Dubai on the 30th arriving about 1400 but check in for the ship doesn't start until 1500. after some confusion amongst Costa staff about paperwork, desks and queues we boarded. We already knew our cabin wouldn't be available until 2000hrs so we left the ship and took the free shuttle to Dubai Mall returning about 1900hrs. We were then allowed access to our cabin and our luggage arrived soon after. Ship sailed on the 31st at 1300hrs for Muscat in Oman, worth a visit. The other ports were Fujairah, not much to see, Abu Dhabi worth a visit, Bahrain don't bother unless you want the trip to the F1 circuit, and back to Dubai arriving on the Friday 5th of Feb. All ports had free shuttle to port gates and other options. "Hop on hop off" bus in Abu Dhabi is worth it, and probably in Dubai but we didn't try that one. The ship is only 9 months old so in good condition. Some of the dEcor is a bit gaudy but then it's Italian. Automatic doors on the toilets are like a space ship but the fittings inside are cheap and bright yellow cubicle dividers. The cabin we had was on deck 6 with balcony, no complaints. Samsara Suites have direct access to Spa but we didn't try that. Room service, breakfast was at no extra charge but often earlier than the time requested. We just had tea and then went to Taurus Restaurant for proper Breakfast. Breakfast is free seating, directed by staff so you can be on a table with anyone. Buffet, including pork bacon, hot eggs to order from waiting staff. Toast on request. Lots of offers for coffee, tea more difficult especially if you want cold milk, although it is on the buffet for cereal. Staff tends to disappear after a while and it can be difficult to attract their attention -they don't look up! Breakfast in Taurus finishes at 0915, too early I feel. Buffet available on upper deck till 1100. Lunch also free seating directed by staff, again could be any size table, finishes at 1400, buffet longer on upper deck. Dinner in 2 sittings 1830 and 2045. Allocated tables with "personal waiters", except for Saturday night. Dining room cramp and meals felt a bit hurried at times. Two "Gala nights" on this trip where suggested dress was formal, other wise casual. Food generally good quality, staff not as good as previous Cunard cruises. We bought in advance a J2 drink package which saved us a fortune on everything from bottled water and "proper coffee" to wine and spirits. Some staff confused by it and it was a bit of a hassle at times. Read Less
Costa Luminosa Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 3.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 0.0
Family 5.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 2.0 0.0
Enrichment 2.0 0.0
Service 3.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 3.0 0.0

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