Starting with the chartered flight from Gatwick. Boarding very painless, fairly quick and no delays. Plane ok, seats don't recline, which is fine for a daytime flight, but not good on an overnight home with no sleep and having to drive 4 hours when you land! Only a very limited choice of free films, the rest you have to pay for £4, which if you are on a Thompson or BA flight are free. Drinks also charged for, food disgusting. Normally i can tolerate airline food, this was the worst ever and i'm not a fussy eater! Boarding at Barbados was chaotic. Standing in a line for half an hour in a boiling hot warehouse shed waiting to get our seacards. More check in stations needed at busy times. Once on board everything was fine, cabin ready and nice and clean. The ship was already very busy and the signs at reception said there were no upgrades available as the ship was full. The library is very small all the popular books had already been checked out, luckilly i took a couple with me, there were no book swaps available either. We had been allocated freedom dining, but a quick visit to the restaurant manager soon changed it to second dining in the MDR. First night we did the deck buffet, food was very nice with a good choice, but unfortunately a bit cold. We had an early night due to the travelling which was when we discovered that cabin E205 (outside) is right above the theatre, and you could hear everything. This is fine if you don't want an early night any time during the cruise, as the last show is 10.30 and finishes at 11.30pm. A visit to reception the next day was successful as they changed us to a cabin further down the corridor which was nice and quiet E410. The only problem was that someone was coming into that cabin on the Friday and we left on the Saturday so would have to go back to our original cabin, this was not a problem for us. Entertainment was very good, the headliners theatre company are very professional and would give a west end show a good run for their money! Tom O'Conner was guest comedian, not our cup of tea but very good. Had to get to the theatre early to get a seat, unfortunately people who had been to first sitting and seen the show earlier also went again for the second show which didn't leave a lot of seats for those coming out of second sitting around 10.15. Food was very good, perhaps not as much choice as there has been in the past, but very tasty and enough choice for us. We didn't pay for any of the optional dining places, I didn't see the point when we had already paid for food. We also ate in the Waterfront Buffet some evenings, this was fairly quiet and the choices were very good, we had a tandori, seafood and asian nights. Entertainment staff were good fun, the sailaway parties were enjoyable and they made an event out of them. The excursions were fairly pricey, we did most ports on our own for a fraction of the cost, everywhere was easy to get around, but the two we did through the ship were very good, these were a snorklelling trip in St Martin and the Farewell to Barbados on the last day which dropped us off at the airport. Again another long wait to leave the airport. We had a slight issue on the last Thursday when we went to swap back to our original cabin, they had out someone in it, so we moved to deck 12, unfortunately it was an inside and we didnt realise till 11.30pm when we went to bed! So back to reception next day where the staff once again were very helpful and moved us to a balcony for the last night, so I have 4 cabin reviews to do! Overall, personally i prefer Royal Caribbean, but would not rule out another cruise on Ventura.

Very Busy Cruise!

Ventura Cruise Review by suesweetbriar

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
Starting with the chartered flight from Gatwick. Boarding very painless, fairly quick and no delays. Plane ok, seats don't recline, which is fine for a daytime flight, but not good on an overnight home with no sleep and having to drive 4 hours when you land! Only a very limited choice of free films, the rest you have to pay for £4, which if you are on a Thompson or BA flight are free. Drinks also charged for, food disgusting. Normally i can tolerate airline food, this was the worst ever and i'm not a fussy eater!
Boarding at Barbados was chaotic. Standing in a line for half an hour in a boiling hot warehouse shed waiting to get our seacards. More check in stations needed at busy times.
Once on board everything was fine, cabin ready and nice and clean. The ship was already very busy and the signs at reception said there were no upgrades available as the ship was full. The library is very small all the popular books had already been checked out, luckilly i took a couple with me, there were no book swaps available either. We had been allocated freedom dining, but a quick visit to the restaurant manager soon changed it to second dining in the MDR.
First night we did the deck buffet, food was very nice with a good choice, but unfortunately a bit cold. We had an early night due to the travelling which was when we discovered that cabin E205 (outside) is right above the theatre, and you could hear everything. This is fine if you don't want an early night any time during the cruise, as the last show is 10.30 and finishes at 11.30pm. A visit to reception the next day was successful as they changed us to a cabin further down the corridor which was nice and quiet E410. The only problem was that someone was coming into that cabin on the Friday and we left on the Saturday so would have to go back to our original cabin, this was not a problem for us.
Entertainment was very good, the headliners theatre company are very professional and would give a west end show a good run for their money! Tom O'Conner was guest comedian, not our cup of tea but very good. Had to get to the theatre early to get a seat, unfortunately people who had been to first sitting and seen the show earlier also went again for the second show which didn't leave a lot of seats for those coming out of second sitting around 10.15.
Food was very good, perhaps not as much choice as there has been in the past, but very tasty and enough choice for us. We didn't pay for any of the optional dining places, I didn't see the point when we had already paid for food. We also ate in the Waterfront Buffet some evenings, this was fairly quiet and the choices were very good, we had a tandori, seafood and asian nights.
Entertainment staff were good fun, the sailaway parties were enjoyable and they made an event out of them.
The excursions were fairly pricey, we did most ports on our own for a fraction of the cost, everywhere was easy to get around, but the two we did through the ship were very good, these were a snorklelling trip in St Martin and the Farewell to Barbados on the last day which dropped us off at the airport. Again another long wait to leave the airport.
We had a slight issue on the last Thursday when we went to swap back to our original cabin, they had out someone in it, so we moved to deck 12, unfortunately it was an inside and we didnt realise till 11.30pm when we went to bed! So back to reception next day where the staff once again were very helpful and moved us to a balcony for the last night, so I have 4 cabin reviews to do!
Overall, personally i prefer Royal Caribbean, but would not rule out another cruise on Ventura.
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Cabin Review

Cabin
Very noisy, right over the theatre, so no sleep until the last show ends at 11.30pm
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