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This was our first time doing a Tgiving cruise and our first time on Jewel of the Seas. We traveled as a family of four (2 adults, 2 kids-age 9) and other prior RC sailing experiences were Freedom of the Seas and Oasis of the Seas. Some of our favorite things about Jewel: --Staff is friendly and helpful. --Size of the ship made embarking/disembarking smoother than other ships. --It never felt overwhelming or took long to get to places. Easy to navigate. --Great itinerary with only one day at sea; nice to wake up in a new port every morning. --Chance to see some of the less familiar southern Caribbean islands (Grenada, Dominica). --Easy ports to make your own plans/arrangements and avoid marked up excursion prices. We were really impressed with Grenada and highly recommend Stan at JNJ Tours. --Variety of beach experiences (Maagens Bay in St Thomas, Grand Anse in Grenada, Carlisle in Barbados, St Maarten) All so unique, different. Kids loved all of them. --Fun experience learning to make our own dinner (sushi) for $20 at Izumi. --We splurged and did a suite for the first time ever. I always jealously peeked at them when housekeeping has the door opened cleaning them. But I've scoffed about spending that much money, was it really necessary, isn't it a bit over the top, etc. For whatever reason, pricing wasn't significantly more than an ocean view room this time and we took the plunge. If the math works for you to try it, do! Accommodations and amenities were fantastic--esp all the little perks like private breakfast dining room, cocktail reception each evening, expedited boarding/departure, concierge, etc. I was a complete skeptic on the price and value, but after I win the next lottery, you should expect to only find me in a suite for years to come! :) Until then.....back to reality. LOL Some things we were less impressed by: --Shows were limited and started at 9pm (late for families with young kids). --Even if they started earlier, some of the shows weren't appropriate for kids (comedian). --Pool movies were old and repeated. Entertainment videos (blooper videos shown during the day at the pool) had poor picture quality/interference and frequently repeated. --Main dining room was dull, mediocre service and almost the same menu every night (but it motivated us to try Chops-which was fantastic!) --We did MyTimeDining at the main dining room with a standing resv and had issues at every check-in. --Kids missed the Dreamsworks characters we've had on the other RC ships (Trolls, Shrek). But they were recently announced to be going away from all ships anyway. --Kids club was small and unimaginative. My kids loved the staff, just limited space. --In-cabin tv programming was minimal. It was Tgiving and we were struggling to get the NFL game. (I know, I know--we're too American!) --Windjammer/buffet was mwehh. Lots of Indian food and repeated food. --There is no pizza parlor, Johnny Rockets, Park Central Cafe, etc like the other RC ships that offers food service throughout the day. So when you reboard in the afternoons, finding food can be tough. Please don't misinterpret--we did not starve, go hungry, or lose weight on this cruise. We got by just fine (and according to my scale, I found plenty of food). :) Just sharing so you can plan ahead. Overall, we had a great time and it is a very nice ship. We simply concluded that this wasn't the right ship size for our family. Oasis of the Seas earlier this year was a little too big, this one was a tad too small, and Freedom of the Seas last year seemed to be just right for us and is still our favorite.

Nicely renovated, but smaller than we expected

Jewel of the Seas Cruise Review by krobinson30

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: November 2018
  • Destination: Southern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Grand Suite - 1 Bedroom
This was our first time doing a Tgiving cruise and our first time on Jewel of the Seas. We traveled as a family of four (2 adults, 2 kids-age 9) and other prior RC sailing experiences were Freedom of the Seas and Oasis of the Seas.

Some of our favorite things about Jewel:

--Staff is friendly and helpful.

--Size of the ship made embarking/disembarking smoother than other ships.

--It never felt overwhelming or took long to get to places. Easy to navigate.

--Great itinerary with only one day at sea; nice to wake up in a new port every morning.

--Chance to see some of the less familiar southern Caribbean islands (Grenada, Dominica).

--Easy ports to make your own plans/arrangements and avoid marked up excursion prices. We were really impressed with Grenada and highly recommend Stan at JNJ Tours.

--Variety of beach experiences (Maagens Bay in St Thomas, Grand Anse in Grenada, Carlisle in Barbados, St Maarten) All so unique, different. Kids loved all of them.

--Fun experience learning to make our own dinner (sushi) for $20 at Izumi.

--We splurged and did a suite for the first time ever. I always jealously peeked at them when housekeeping has the door opened cleaning them. But I've scoffed about spending that much money, was it really necessary, isn't it a bit over the top, etc. For whatever reason, pricing wasn't significantly more than an ocean view room this time and we took the plunge. If the math works for you to try it, do! Accommodations and amenities were fantastic--esp all the little perks like private breakfast dining room, cocktail reception each evening, expedited boarding/departure, concierge, etc. I was a complete skeptic on the price and value, but after I win the next lottery, you should expect to only find me in a suite for years to come! :) Until then.....back to reality. LOL

Some things we were less impressed by:

--Shows were limited and started at 9pm (late for families with young kids).

--Even if they started earlier, some of the shows weren't appropriate for kids (comedian).

--Pool movies were old and repeated. Entertainment videos (blooper videos shown during the day at the pool) had poor picture quality/interference and frequently repeated.

--Main dining room was dull, mediocre service and almost the same menu every night (but it motivated us to try Chops-which was fantastic!)

--We did MyTimeDining at the main dining room with a standing resv and had issues at every check-in.

--Kids missed the Dreamsworks characters we've had on the other RC ships (Trolls, Shrek). But they were recently announced to be going away from all ships anyway.

--Kids club was small and unimaginative. My kids loved the staff, just limited space.

--In-cabin tv programming was minimal. It was Tgiving and we were struggling to get the NFL game. (I know, I know--we're too American!)

--Windjammer/buffet was mwehh. Lots of Indian food and repeated food.

--There is no pizza parlor, Johnny Rockets, Park Central Cafe, etc like the other RC ships that offers food service throughout the day. So when you reboard in the afternoons, finding food can be tough. Please don't misinterpret--we did not starve, go hungry, or lose weight on this cruise. We got by just fine (and according to my scale, I found plenty of food). :) Just sharing so you can plan ahead.

Overall, we had a great time and it is a very nice ship. We simply concluded that this wasn't the right ship size for our family. Oasis of the Seas earlier this year was a little too big, this one was a tad too small, and Freedom of the Seas last year seemed to be just right for us and is still our favorite.
krobinson30’s Full Rating Summary
Value For Money
Embarkation
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Entertainment
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Ages 7 to 9
Service
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