Liberty of the Seas Cruise Review by danpatrick64
- Sail Date: May 2019
- Destination: Western Caribbean
- Cabin Type: Ocean View Balcony
The on-boarding process was fairly streamlined and was somewhat better than prior trips we have taken out of Galveston. Both the Carnival and Royal ships were docked on the same day which made the cruise terminal area extra busy but it was handled well by the port staff. We dropped off the luggage, took the car to park in the cruise terminal parking lot "B", and then took the shuttle over to board the ship. Going through the check in process was simple and easy, and within 10 minutes we were on the ship (around 12:15 PM). The staterooms were not ready yet, so we took the time to explore the ship. The ship's appearance is dated as stated in other reviews but we found it being maintained nicely overall. Once we were allowed into out stateroom area, we had to wait another 10 minutes as our cabin steward completed preparing our cabin. He was wonderful and really did a great job the entire cruise of taking care of our cabin. I give him a 5 star out of 5. We had a balcony cabin on deck 9, and we were very surprised and very happy with how large the cabin was. The cabin was overall in great shape and it was very quiet and dark at night which is something we value in a cabin.
We grabbed a late lunch at the windjammer after all the hoards of people had mostly left. The food was about what we expected from a windjammer on a Royal ship, hot and average flavor. No surprises. When if came time for dinner (we had traditional dining at 8 PM sitting at a table with 3 other couples), we went to the dining room on the 4th deck and were seated. The service started out good but we quickly noted some challenges with getting water and tea glasses refiled and being checked on by the wait staff. I ordered Prime Rib and my meal came out tough, totally overcooked, and somewhat cold. I mentioned to the waiter and he replaced my meal with one that was cooked to right temp and tenderness for me. Food was mediocre in the main dining room which aligned with the comments I saw from prior reviews. We were the last table to finish being served that night which should have been a hint to us that we were in for trouble with the main dining room that night (we did not get out of there until 10:15 PM). The next night was average again at best but at least the service was a little better. A HUGE, pleasant surprise for us occurred in night 3. We decided to forgo the main dining room and grab a bite at the Windjammer due to us wanting to attend a show that occurred at same time our fixed dinner was. The quality and taste if the food at night in the Windjammer was the best we have ever experienced at the venue on a Royal ship. Huge selection of great food. I highly recommend eating dinner at least one at the Windjammer on this ship. We ate there a total of 3 nights. When it was Lobster night (night 6), we decided that we needed to eat at the main dining room again to get the lobster. This night is when everything went downhill in a major way. We had the worst service I have ever experienced aboard a cruise ship. Our food was an hour late in coming out, and when we got it, those of us who had ordered lobster with prime rib only received the prime rib. It took another 30 minutes to get small, overcooked lobster tail and was told we could only have one lobster tail as they had run out. The waiter working the table next to us was trying to peddle off extra lobster tails to his table. Our wait staff ended up being the issue we had. They were horrible. We were left unattended for at least 30 minute stretches. I asked for the head waiter to alert him to the issues and he offered me a free surf and turf which I declined as I wanted them to be aware of the waiter issue they had. I proceeded to the customer service desk the next morning and had all my pre-paid gratuities removed from my account. I tipped the cabin steward separately and left the wait staff nothing. I also left a note for the head of the dining department about my experience.
Activities on the ship were about what we expected except on the last 2 at sea days they had limited activities scheduled which left people who did not want to sit at the pool all day somewhat bored. I would recommend adding more trivia, team games, and non shopping activities to sea days.
We decided to use carry off your own luggage on disembarkation day. The process was simple and very easy to use. We were totally blown away by the speed and efficiency of getting off the ship and getting through customs. It literally took us 5 minutes from the time we left the ship until we were on the shuttle to get our car. Coo-dos out to the Galveston Port workers and CBP for their service!!
Overall, the cruise met most expectations other than the need for a major overhaul in the main dining room food and service.
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