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7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2015
I have been on several cruise ships (Royal, Carnival, Norwegian) and this last one on Costa. I will not even try to compare them because they have very little in common. I will start off with embarkment in Miami. We were scheduled to ... Read More
I have been on several cruise ships (Royal, Carnival, Norwegian) and this last one on Costa. I will not even try to compare them because they have very little in common. I will start off with embarkment in Miami. We were scheduled to embark at 1300hours in Miami. It was a hot and humid day and they had no lines clearly marked, no water or shade provided for the elderly or kids. The line at one point looked like a herd of buffallos stampedeing towards the ship and my 2 year old was over run by some guy trying to get to the ship first. Once on the ship we got our cabin pretty soon and were happy to learn that we actually got a obstructed ocean view instead of inside cabin. Our room steaward introduced herself and that is the friendliest we saw her the whole trip. Every time she would come in the room she had a frown on her face and was very short with her answers. She knew we were traveling with two young children and never once asked if we needed anything. At one point she took the milk that we brought from the buffet into the fridge and threw it out. I asked several time for diaper bags and was never provided with one so i had to go to the elevators and dispose dirty diapers in there. The dinners were the only free option and you had to be there on time or else you missed it and had to either pay for the pizza or specialty restaurants. (big minus). the whole duration of the trip they had the ice cream machines in the buffet area but never served ice cream out of them.... (teasing the passengers???). It being a european ship it attracted a lot of Europeans and it seemed like everone on the ship smoked. (something i have no control over but something to consider when choosing your hard earned vacation cruise). The ship had no real children program for any kids under 3 years old and we did not expect it. However, I would have loved to seee the option of dining with children in buffet area because dining with little children in a formal setting is not the best. The ports were all nice although at some points it seemed a little unorganized. To summarize our experience I would have to say if they had better crew and more caring crew members it would be a more pleasent way to travel. I will definitely not travel with Costa ever again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2015
The thing to remember is that this is an Italian ship. Although it departed from Miami, it is an Italian ship. Most the passengers were Italian followed by French and Spanish with the number of Americans far behind. Everything was in five ... Read More
The thing to remember is that this is an Italian ship. Although it departed from Miami, it is an Italian ship. Most the passengers were Italian followed by French and Spanish with the number of Americans far behind. Everything was in five languages: first Italian, then english followed by French, German and Spanish. Imagine the safety drill – repeated five times. When it was over,the two minute two minute wrap up comments took nearly ten minutes to repeat in each language. This goes on and on. The ship is relatively new and beautifully appointed. The cabins are nicely appointed and ample size. King size beds can be divided into doubles. The toilet is turned at an angle, giving the bathroom more useable room. A safe was included in the room. The balcony was probably the largest we have had. Dining was interesting. The breakfast selection was perhaps a little more limited than previous cruises although an omelet station was available. Dinner was a different experience. There are two dinner seatings – an early and a late. Remember,this is an Italian ship and late dining means really late – 9:15. The menu choices are presented in typical Italian fashion. Antipasta first, followed by a serving of pasta, then the entrée. The salad is last, just before desert. It is after all,an Italian ship. Most ships have carving stations with ham, beef or turkey; however, this ship. Had a carving station with octopus! Published guidelines indicate “there is no set dress code in the evening…. Casual; informal (jacket for Gentlemen); Formal/gala(smart:evening dresses are per existed for Ladies; jacket and tie or dark suite for gentlemen). Just the opposite was the case jeans were commonplace each night and even some shorts. The gala nights were big time dress up for some, but not most. It seemed that for dinner almost anything went dress wise. The food was excellent with a very appealing presentation. There was a standard set of favorites available everyday in addition to the evening’s choices. Portions were not large, but more than ample, especially given the number of courses. The food was probably the best we had ever had on a cruise ship. Coffee was not served with dinner. The evening’s menus was never posted in advance. Different beverage packages were available. Ones with beer and soda were available for purchase at additional cost. We had the “Water USA” package which meant that we had we had free water with our meal. Folks without that had to pay for their water. How we ended up with this was never clear, but we thought it might have been tied into the kind of cabin you had booked. We had aPremium Balcony and thought that the difference. We also had fee room service in the morning because of the premium room. Cj. Others had to pay for room service. We read reviews of folks saying they had to get their wine before dinner and carry it in with them. That was not the case. Upon entry, each table had on it a wine list. It seemed as if the maitre d’ wanted the wine list taken down as quickly as possible he would circulate and seemingly scold the staff if it were on the table. As a result, they quickly removed the wine list after entry, usually before one could look over the menu choices and make a selection. Once removed, it was difficult to get back. Beware! The public bathrooms in some sections of the ship are for both sexes which came as a rather awkward surprise to our American ways. Excursions were a challenge. Because of the number of languages, there were never enough English only to make a group. As a result, English was always mixed with another. On one tour, the guide on the bus spoke no English. We were met by an English speaker upon arrival. On another, the guide gave the information first in French. When he began in English,the French began to talk among themselves, making it impossible to hear the guide. The time and meeting point for excursions was never made available until late the night before. The reason given was that arrangements were being finalized which is absurd since they run this cruise over and over. Onboard activities on sea days were rather limited. We have been accustomed to a much larger variety of possibilities. For instance, on one sea day they had just eleven planned activities. On the previous shore day there were ten. Since this is an Italian ship, we were concerned about whether it would have American or European electrical plugs. We co contacted support the company and were reassured that it was American. In actuality, there was one American and one European plug in the entire cabin! We had taken along our European adapter and were able to operate two which was enough to recharge our devices. In all, the Costa Luminosa was a nice, modern ship with excellent food. Language was a problem, but not an insurmountable one.   Read Less
Sail Date: February 2015
Our recent cruise on Costa Cruise line’s 11 day Caribbean Cruise was not a positive experience. While we found the efforts of the wait staff and cabin stewards to be very positive, our interactions with those above that level was found ... Read More
Our recent cruise on Costa Cruise line’s 11 day Caribbean Cruise was not a positive experience. While we found the efforts of the wait staff and cabin stewards to be very positive, our interactions with those above that level was found to be more than dissatisfying. We had 2 of our 4 excursions cancelled due to “lack of enough sign ups”, yet discovered the other guests had taken the same excursions with no problems. We also experienced the opposite where we took an excursion and others had been told theirs was cancelled due to “lack of enough sign ups”. We found after the fact, that important information relating to how guests needed to register their credit cards for expenditures while on the cruise, had actually been included in fine print in a list of events for that day. We were put ashore using the ships life rafts at one dock, only to find out at the time of departure for re-boarding that we were to go to a different dock to get back on board. Why hadn’t we been told ahead of time? We found a great difficulty in carrying on a discussion with middle management due to what we perceived to be their lack of communication skills regarding their policies. The lack of variation in menu for breakfasts and lunches was noticeable. As well, even though they had frozen yogurt machines at every buffet counter, none had the dispenser heads on them during the entire cruise. When asked about this, we were told we could “buy” ice cream bars from a machine dispenser at one of the pool areas. Compared to other cruises taken in the past, there was a noticeable dearth of quality entertainment on board for those days at sea. All in all, it was quite apparent that the Costa Cruise line is experiencing some major financial crises and is cutting corners at every opportunity to them. Our experiences varied considerably from experiences on other cruise lines. We will definitely not be on any future passenger manifest of Costa Cruise line. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2015
We do a lot of cruising. We cruised 7 times this past year and usually love it. We are not picky. We usually eat in the buffets on board, so you know that we can't be that picky. We have cruised many times on Royal Caribbean (not as ... Read More
We do a lot of cruising. We cruised 7 times this past year and usually love it. We are not picky. We usually eat in the buffets on board, so you know that we can't be that picky. We have cruised many times on Royal Caribbean (not as good as it was several years ago), Norwegian and Carnival. The ship was 90% international travelers, which did not bother us. Matter of fact we became good friends with some German couples that we meet on board. What bothered us the most that there is no place to eat on this ship after 6 pm unless you want to pay. From 2:30 until 5:30 or 6 pm you may get some salad, terrible pizza and some lunch meat sandwiches, but that is it. If you don't want to eat in the dining room then you starve until the next morning. Dinner takes 2 hours. The rolls must be leftover from breakfast because you could use them as baseballs. We found in the morning they are very good. It is the same menu every day in the buffet for breakfast. At least they did have an omelet station. Cold cereal is not in boxes, but dumped in a plastic bin. I can only imagine how stale the cereal is by the end of the cruise. Be aware that the difference between a premium balcony and a classic balcony on the website is that you can receive a full breakfast in your cabin for free each morning. Since we did not want a full breakfast, only coffee, we did not upgrade. Little did we know that that meant you couldn't even get coffee in your room unless you paid $7 per person. There is no place on the ship to get coffee BEFORE the buffet opens in the morning. You have to wait until they officially open the coffee pots each morning to get any. At dinner they had been charging $7 per bottle to get water at dinner. They said that so many Americans had complained on previous cruises that they provided all Americans, and Canadians, with the dinner water package. It was marked "US water" on our cards. So nice of them. That meant that you could get water by the glass, no ice, when you could get someone to give it to you. Trying to find a seat in the buffet was nearly impossible. Often we asked an officer why there was no seating to be told that there was. Our reply was, "Find us a seat then", which they couldn't. It seems that many people would sit there and drink their wine with lunch and never leave. Also, many tables for 6-8, but few for 2-4, which meant that there were many seats not being utilized properly. Everything done on the ship was done in 5-6 languages. The boat drill was held at 10:15 at night because the ship leaves at 11 pm. This is one of the few ships that still makes you put on a life vest and stand in lines on the deck. The drill took forever because it had to be done in each of the 6 languages. Port days were a mess. There was never an announcement of where to go to get off the ship. Sometimes you would go down the midship elevators to be told when there to the forward elevators. Would have been nice to have had some information. The room steward and our server were nice, but all other staff were not. They really didn't want to be bothered by anyone. There seemed to be a lot of officers doing nothing, while a few regular staff did all of the work. Many of the staff stated that there used to be a buffet at night, but that they took it away. Guess they wanted to save money. They have many soft serve ice cream machines, none of which were ever working while we were on the ship. They do have a freezer next to one ice cream machine from which you can BUY an ice cream bar. Now you know why none of the machines work. When we booked the cruise all of the reviews available were either from their European cruises or the transatlantic cruise. We were hoping that that trips in the states would be better, but not so. If we had seen the latest reviews we wouldn't have booked this cruise. The debarkation process was a disaster. We did not get off the ship until 1:30 pm!! They blamed it on US customs, but I am not really sure that that was the problem. You do immigration on board since you do not return to the same dock from which you embarked. Luggage is in a tent, not a terminal. Overall this cruise line is not what most cruisers expect from a cruise line. Even the Europeans were disappointed with the amenities on the ship that one usually expects. DON"T GO ON THIS CRUISE LINE IF YOU HAVE EVER CRUISED BEFORE!!!!!   Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2015
Ive been on 46 cruises ,, 3 on Costa... I read the reviews on Costa Luminosa before going but I had booked the cruise already at a good price ... I was really disappointed in this cruise... We thought we were on a Timeshare cruise... 5 of ... Read More
Ive been on 46 cruises ,, 3 on Costa... I read the reviews on Costa Luminosa before going but I had booked the cruise already at a good price ... I was really disappointed in this cruise... We thought we were on a Timeshare cruise... 5 of us went , 2 suites 1 balcony cabins... 1st thing we found was no water was supplied at sitdown meals including the specialty dining room Club Costa.. We were charged $7.00 per bottle... We figured Costa cut the food budget to $5.00 per person per day... Prime rib was cut 3/16 of an inch thick... We figured the meat at each meal was between 2 and 4 oz.. Meals were almost the same every day... Small varances ... Pizza was a joke.. Pizza crust with sauce only... No cheese or meat ... No daily movies.. The big screen only showed advertisements... hardly anyone spoke American.. Ship was kept spotless... Shows were ok but mostly ships singers and dancers every night.. The downfall I think is ships automatic tips... Service has gone to crap... In the specialty dining room we usally had 2 waiters per table.. on this ship we had 1 server for 6 tables..We paid $34 for meal that took 3 hrs to get served and it wasn't a $8.00 meal... I would have expected it in the regular dining room... 1 steak on menu a poor grade ribeye .. I could go on but I think you get the way this is going... I WOULD NEVER PAY TO GO ON 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
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2015
Before our cruise I had read a lot of negative feedback about Costa Luminosa. Well, I don't know why did they get that all because I think they really didn't deserve it. On the contrary: all the staff was nice and polite, ... Read More
Before our cruise I had read a lot of negative feedback about Costa Luminosa. Well, I don't know why did they get that all because I think they really didn't deserve it. On the contrary: all the staff was nice and polite, smiling, helpful. Maybe some of them were a bit shy or not so multilingual but that's exactly the same with all cruises with the crew collected allover the world. We had some problems with our lugaage which had been lost due to problems with connection flights to Miami. On board we got "first-aid-kit" with some necessary hygienic things clothing, etc. Then we also got bathrobe and slippers (which were not included in the price in our cabin category) and we could have had our laundry done without charge. So they tried to do their very best to make things to us as comfortable as possible. Because of too much sun with too little drinking water I had some health problems and the medical care was most professional, kind and efficient. Cabin was spacious and comfortable and always very clean. Dinners started to be maybe a bit boring - there might be good to have a bit more variation. Or maybe just having 10 days same system was boring. It would have been hovewer nice to have the self-service restaurants in the 9th floor open in the evening as well - just for change. In common I would say that it depends a lot of your own behaviour. If you are polite and smiling, it's much easier to get the same reactions back:). Future passengers on board Costa Luminosa: I wish You a pleasant cruise, that's not so bad You could imagine on the basis of some very critical opinions. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2015
I had read the bad reviews here before going, but we still took this ship ONLY because of the combination of ports it was visiting. I found the bad reviews were completely true. We took the Costa Luminosa as the second of three cruises we ... Read More
I had read the bad reviews here before going, but we still took this ship ONLY because of the combination of ports it was visiting. I found the bad reviews were completely true. We took the Costa Luminosa as the second of three cruises we did (one right after the other). The first was the Carnival Valor, which is the Luminosa's sister ship (Both cruise lines are owned by Carnival Corporation). Our stateroom was literally identical to the one we had on the Carnival Valor. The best part of the ship were the Filipino housekeeping staff and waiters. They did try hard to please passengers. However, the rest of the crew (mostly Europeans) didn't seem to care if passengers did not like the service or facilities. The North Americans (Canadian and Americans) I found aboard seemed amazed at the horrible customer service. The staff showed little flexibility. It would never be tolerated in a North American hotel. The disembarkation process each time was much slower than Carnival and seemed overly bureaucratic. This ship was primarily filled with Europeans visiting the Caribbean. English speakers only made up about 10% of the passengers - while the majority were French, Italian, and German. Announcements on board were usually in 5 languages. I have been to Europe several times and enjoy visiting there. However, something seems to happen to these people when they come to North America in a group. They were some of the rudest people I have ever met. Very rarely did I ever hear them say "excuse me" (not even in their own language) when they frequently pushed by. They were also notorious for butting into lines (with the French being the worst). I got the distinct feeling throughout the cruise that Costa was "nickel and diming" passengers and trying to cut costs to help pay for the huge financial bill from the Costa Concordia disaster (which is literally going to cost them a few billion dollars). Things that were free on Carnival were often unavailable, or, offered for a charge on Costa. For example, on Carnival, soft serve ice cream is available 24/7 for free. On Costa, the machines had parts obviously removed (to make them permanently inoperable) with pay-for ice cream bar machines beside them. The crew told me the soft serve machines are never used. I got the feeling that Costa was told by the mother company they must have the machines, but the Costa staff made sure they were not operable so customers had to pay for it. Drinks were also each a few dollars more on Costa compared to Carnival. Another sign that Costa was cutting corners to save money was in the t.v. channels they offered in cabins. No CNN or BBC. If you wanted English news it was from Japan's NHK English service. Even the Spanish got the Spanish language service of Russian Television. There were no free movies on t.v. either. On Carnival, if a passenger did not want to go to a formal night they could still eat in casual attire at a nice buffet on the top deck. On Costa, if you did not attend the formal night then your only other option was mediocre pizza for $8 on the top deck. The casual buffet was closed at dinner time, and there was no dinner-time room service. The food at the breakfast and lunch buffets was like eating in a high school cafeteria. Everyone had to choose between an early sitting at dinner (at 6:30 p.m.) or a late sitting (at 9:00 p.m.). You have to preselect them and they are fixed for the remainder of the cruise, as you are seated at large tables with others. There was no option to eat dinner when you wanted to. Quite often we returned from shore excursions late and missed the first part of our early sitting. Lucky for us, we had a nice group of 4 other English speaking-couples at our table. Do you desire soft bread at dinner? Too bad, if you don't like hard bread you get none. The price for internet use was about $14 an hour and the ship-to-shore phone was $7.95 A MINUTE (even to the nearby U.S.). Most of the ship's passengers were in their 50's to 70's and the ship still seemed crowded and loud. We literally had to stay in our cabin if we wanted a quiet place. The same size Carnival ship had adult areas, and you could find quiet areas around the ship both inside and outside. Carnival had wooden decks outside. Instead, Costa saved money by painting it's all-metal decks to look like they were wooden. The Luminosa also has a pathetically small jogging track. The ship's library was small and crammed with pay-for computer terminals. There was no evening movie played on the big screen (by the pool) at night either. The Jacuzzi tubs always seemed crowded when we went. In summary, we will never sail on a Costa ship again due to it's lack of customer service, it's penny-pinching, and rude European passengers. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2015
Multinational passenger makeup: This is 100% accurate. For those of us that enjoy meeting other cultures and interact with, who speak or want to practice: French, Indian (farcy?), Phillipeans, German, Italian, Portugease, Spanish-this is ... Read More
Multinational passenger makeup: This is 100% accurate. For those of us that enjoy meeting other cultures and interact with, who speak or want to practice: French, Indian (farcy?), Phillipeans, German, Italian, Portugease, Spanish-this is an ideal way to comfortably do so. This is not the arena to argue your dislike or personal feelings about said questions. If your not into being around different cultures and hearing different languages and having fun lotsa fun with different cultures this may not be the line for you. Pricing: There is a difference price wise than "American" styled cruise lines. Where you ARE able to gorge yourself on food and drink, there isn't really food available after you eat dinner. We were charged 2.50 as a service charge for room service. Which isn't bad so you gave 2.50 as a tip for after hours food. We only did this three times and they were super duper quick. I would have preferred to have had a steam room or sauna available without charge, and as far as I know there wasn't one. I will say the price of drinks was extremely reasonable. We got a package deal which is the smart way to go I think if you are going on the cruise for that type of fun. The last cruise line I went on we didn't get a package and I drank the same amount I was charged for the package however my ship mate saved about 2hundred dollars by getting the package. Smoking: The reviews about smoking are over exaggarated. It's not like people are walking around burning you in your thigh as you make yourway towards the swimming pool. There are designated areas and smoking on your outside balcony. I'm sorry but if it's raining I don't want to be out in the elements anymore than a non smoker would. A smoking lounge was available near the casino and an open air one with flat screen on upper deck. Events/dancing: The "Vickies" of the ship were super entertaining and approachable. They danced and talked with you. There were daily dance lessons (awesome) and ship wide parties. There is a Vicky that speaks all MAJOR languages onboard. (A Vicky is my term for the activities directors like in the TV show "Love Boat" (The disco was a bust for me, I would have preferred to have other cruisers who wanted to dance ALL NIGHT LONG---who were closer to my age (40) and could drink-though I was entertained by the numerous piano bars) The group I cruised with was a heavily couples, but I enjoyed them. In the dinning room we were treated to shows by the serving staff with high energy music, but I don't remember it being Hip Hop. Excursions: I am 50/50 on them. I would say to get the ones on the ship maybe every other time. I found some real deals on shore. HOWEVER, if you're easily swayed into doing dumb things that don't make sense then buy on the ship. So if someone wants to charge you 100 for a sea shell and you would rather buy it than say no to a poor person who probably isn't poor...buy them on the ship. As well don't be afraid to STICK TO THE MAIN ROADS and just take a simple walk. See what there is to see then get back on the ship with your all inclusive drink package and the hot tub. So hey make your money work for you..I don't have alot so I put my money into my drink package and spent maybe 100 on excursions. We spent about 20-40 max per excursion and had a fabulous time. I thought getting a dunbuggy in Turks n Caicos would have been a dumb idea as I'VE NEVER EVEN HEARD OF THE PLACE, AND NEVER HEARD OF ANYONE GOING THERE, SO taking a 20 trolly ride and seeing the entire island and learning the history made more sense...now I have new knowledge. Staff: Mr. Brown bar manager jamaica, Ruben Honduras server, Mrs. Jamaica, Jackson indian guy chef, Ms. L Brown cocktail, Maxy room steward,-- Choclate the singer --were some of the most awesome staff I've come across Food: I love different types of food. My tablemates commented on my food every night. I'm the type of person that is adventurous. Sure throw me something called grits and put shrimp on it and tell me it's awesome. I might like it. Our food is as strange and wildly combined as any in the world. I'm a seafood lover and love cheese as I'm from Wisconsin so I was all into it. I will say that they love hard bread on everything overseas so that wasn't good for me, but hey how hard was it NOT to have the bread, not hard. I found the burgers and sausages to be awesome actually especially with the Tourbo? beer. The Becks on tap was probably the worse beer next to "Old Swill" As someone said the eggs were wet, which my dad loves but I HATE. So it was omelete station for me..oh yeah..great sausages, crisp bacon. The dinner portions worked for me as I was eating all day lol. Late sitting was better for us than early as well everynight we caught a show and the dancers and italian tenor was super. All in all this wasn't a PARTY cruise ship, it was a relaxing classy cruise ship and thas ok. However I need to have bigger swimming pool and nightly dance clubs with people in it. I didn't find the Indonesian staff to be as friendly as everyone else. Very few staff from Peru they were cool..many hot dark Indians many.....The Phillipean crew members were super super friendly and outgoing.   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
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2015
First, let me say that it has been a month since we returned from this cruise. Having sailed with three other cruise lines I found Costa to embarkation staff to be somewhat disorganized as it comes to a person with disabilities. It took ... Read More
First, let me say that it has been a month since we returned from this cruise. Having sailed with three other cruise lines I found Costa to embarkation staff to be somewhat disorganized as it comes to a person with disabilities. It took some time for them to locate a large wheelchair both on embarkation and disembarking. Disembarking was a disaster and I finally had to use a walker because they could not locate a large wheelchair. We were about an hour and half late getting off the ship. I must say the Luminosa is a beautiful ship and the crew members are friendly as one would expect. The production shows were very well done and had gorgeous costuming. I addition they had an Italian tenor that was extremely talented. The stateroom (an accessible balcony) was very nice, good sized and well maintained. The passengers were mainly from Europe and there were many languages being spoken. It was odd, band very welcome, to hear English speakers. Almost all ship's announcements were made in four languages, which made for a very lengthy life boat drill. The food was of average ship fare with small portions except for the pasta course. The dining room at dinner time was very crowded. Our table was set for eight persons, but thankfully after the first dinner we had only six and that was comfortable. At dinner time the buffet is closed which makes for overcrowding in the main dining rooms. And this was without the ship being at full capacity. If you care to drink water you can get it for free at the buffet. However in the dining room there is a charge at breakfast even if your id card says you can have water. At dinner you can have all the bottled water you can drink, if it states WaterUSA on your ship id card. Also if you're used to free iced tea as on other ships you won't get it on Costa. Additionally if you care for lobster, shrimp or escargot Costa does not offer those in the main dining rooms. I also had a problem with the public accessible restrooms. Twice I was interrupted while in the restroom by the automatic door coming open which was embarrassing to me and the lady and man who opened it. This happened the second time after I had reported the problem after the first incident. Additionally another restroom was either always occupied or the auto door was not working even after I reported it. All in all the cruise was ok, but I would not sail Costa again. Their business model is European and not what we are used to in the US. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2015
Consider ourselves seasoned cruisers (25years) for some time. Costa Cruise Lines was by far the worst ever experience we have ever had. The food was horrible, if you missed your scheduled dinning room seating...you had to pay 8.00 for the ... Read More
Consider ourselves seasoned cruisers (25years) for some time. Costa Cruise Lines was by far the worst ever experience we have ever had. The food was horrible, if you missed your scheduled dinning room seating...you had to pay 8.00 for the buffet pizza which had no cheese nor topping on it. They shut down the juice and water machines after breakfast and lunch forcing you to buy drinks or water. None of the ice cream machines worked. The staff was somewhat cordial, only when you made the effort to be nice. Most of the time you felt they were doing you a favor. Since we only speak English...all the shows were in a foreign language, so we did not enjoy that. The pools and hot tubs were very small and over crowded. Not enough chairs or lounge chairs on the deck to accomodate the passengers. Lesson learned. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
We have cruised seven times, mostly Carnival lines. Although the food was better than most, as many other travelers have said, the service was not very friendly. We were most aggravated by the $11 a day per person we were charged ... Read More
We have cruised seven times, mostly Carnival lines. Although the food was better than most, as many other travelers have said, the service was not very friendly. We were most aggravated by the $11 a day per person we were charged automatically for "tips" that were not deserved or earned. No incentive for employees to do a good job. I prefer tipping myself so I know the employees get the money and the hard workers are properly identified and rewarded. No food after dinner on a cruise line except for a whole pizza you have to pay for? What happened to 24 hour food. Room service menu was a joke. All the soft serve ice cream machines were closed without any explanation that was intelligible. The head of buffet rudely told me to cover up when I walked through with a bathing suit while everyone else was half naked (despite the fact that their bodies should have been covered). Italians hate Americans and 95% was Italian. Rude is an understatement. We were ostracized by the crew, staff, and other passengers. We got a room that said Ocean View but it was actually a view of the side of a lifeboat! Many ships have lifeboats below the cabins but not the luminosa. Bored to death on sea days. Very few activities. All announcements were made in five languages. Ugggh. Asking any questions about the ship were either ignored or dismissed. If a coffee machine was empty, no one would offer to get one, just say in a foreign language that I could walk half a mile to another machine. The only good thing about Costa was a very good embarkation and disembarkation method. Unless you were foreign and had to wait in a huge line to get back to Miami. Americans should avoid Costa lines at all costs unless you speak fluent Italian and do not look American! No football games or movies on main outdoor television. Only 24/7 advertising. No ESPN. Sports bar had no sports on televisions. Juices were flavored water. Beds were hard and uncomfortable. Pillows small and awful. Casino was a joke. Video poker games were rigged and pay tables so low it was ridiculous to even try to play. Poker table was used once a day for a tournament or two. I will say the singers, especially the Tringali Trio, were amazingly good but again very unfriendly to Americans. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
I was thrilled to be going on a cruise for Christmas. Arriving in Miami and seeing the ship , I was very excited because the ship was beautiful. Once we reached our cabin there was a full bed. WMy son had booked the cruise and requested ... Read More
I was thrilled to be going on a cruise for Christmas. Arriving in Miami and seeing the ship , I was very excited because the ship was beautiful. Once we reached our cabin there was a full bed. WMy son had booked the cruise and requested separate beds. We asked for it to be changed and were asked if we could sleep together for the night. What? I don't want to sleep with my son. Next, the air condition did not work, however the steward kept trying to convince us that it was working. They finally admitted three days later that they were having a problem. Then we had a premium cabin which we were told by the person that booked the cruise included free room service and free breakfast in the cabin. Customer service told us basically that we were lying (this was our first time on Costa cruise how would we have known this). Next, we ordered water USA which gave us free water during meals. However, we found out that breakfast is not a meal and were charged for water. Things kept going on like this. I understand that this was an European cruise, but you allowed other nationalities to board and should consider this. Customer Service was horrible, many people were complaining about the service. My son lost his phone and he was told that a passenger had stolen it and it would not be returned by an employee. She worked with the pictures and continued to tell us how the passengers steal pictures all time. Really, this is not what we want to hear. As an American, I give the total Costa Cruise a 2 out of 10. My waiter Dee Dee was great! But thank God for French fries. Definitely will go back to American Cruise lines. 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
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
We just returned from our first Cruise. We have chosen Costa Cruise based on program and price. As we didn’t know what to expect we were very excited, and the Costa Luminosa, didn’t disappointed us. It was a fantastic experience. ... Read More
We just returned from our first Cruise. We have chosen Costa Cruise based on program and price. As we didn’t know what to expect we were very excited, and the Costa Luminosa, didn’t disappointed us. It was a fantastic experience. Everything was so clean, well maintained, especially compared to other ships which came to the same ports. In every harbor they cleaned the outside of the ship, painted if needed and so on. The cabins (we reserved two) were comfortable and clean, well equipped. Fantastic cabin crew, named Frenky, so committed, I appreciate his energy. Always visible in the corridor, busy with making people feel like a King. Same for the people at the restaurant and bars. Food was very good. I visited the kitchen, in my previous job as food inspector I inspected many restaurants kitchens and I have never seen a clean and professional equipped industrial kitchen like in Luminosa. A big compliment for the chef and his personal. So a couple of key words: • Super clean • Good drinks and foods • Over all, friendly employees • Good balance between price and quality   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2014
This was an amazing cruise!! I was really nervous after reading the recent negative reviews. I must say this was my favorite cruise to date. Perfect ports, great mixture of port days and sea days, good food, extremely clean ship, and great ... Read More
This was an amazing cruise!! I was really nervous after reading the recent negative reviews. I must say this was my favorite cruise to date. Perfect ports, great mixture of port days and sea days, good food, extremely clean ship, and great entertainment. Mateo was by far my favorite entertainer. He played piano and saxophone, and had an amazing voice. Loved him! :) Best bartender, hands down, was Edgar! He made our ship time fun and went the extra mile on customer service. Yes, it's an Italian ship. Yes, they speak Italian. Hello?! I did not have a problem communicating with anyone, as they speak English as well. There were designated smoking sections and I did not find cigarette smoke to be a problem at all on this ship. I have found Carnival and Royal Caribbean to be much worse. If I had to come up with negatives it would be the late dinner seating at 8:45 lasted until 10:30 due to slow service. However, we loved the people seated with us, and came to enjoy our nightly conversations. Both pool areas were small and could have had a better layout. The back pool bar was understaffed. 10 days in the Caribbean!! Who could complain?! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2014
Don't knock it till you try it. This is our second Costa cruise in two years. Our first one was the most fun we had and this one is not far behind. The ship is well maintained. The staff are friendly. Both the cabin steward and the ... Read More
Don't knock it till you try it. This is our second Costa cruise in two years. Our first one was the most fun we had and this one is not far behind. The ship is well maintained. The staff are friendly. Both the cabin steward and the dining room team were great, dinner takes one hour fifteen minutes almost everyday. Dining room food is hit or missed and portions are smaller than other cruise lines. The buffet was open for full dinner on the first three evenings only. The lunch buffet was great, lots of choices. The grill served steak fries and their chicken burger ie great. The pasta was not cook well, not aldente but just under cook most of the time. Dessert selection was poor. I am just pointing out some of the weakness in the food area, when the dish was done right it was very good. Costa need to get rid of those stupid water and ice dispensers that uses sensors. They do not work properly most of the time, it will drive you crazy. Offer more than just ice tea would be great. The entertainment was just ok this time but it was great on our previous Costa cruise. However, ballroom dancing is just as good as before. Best ballroom music and dancing at sea. The TV program is horrible so bring a book. The ship was super smooth, never felt any movement. COSTA offers a terrfic value, different food and experience. Go with an open mind, we will be back.   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2014
After reading all the negative reviews we were very apprehensive about stepping aboard Costa Luminosa for our 28 day trans Atlantic cruise. All I can say is you don't believe all that you read. The first issue was language as ... Read More
After reading all the negative reviews we were very apprehensive about stepping aboard Costa Luminosa for our 28 day trans Atlantic cruise. All I can say is you don't believe all that you read. The first issue was language as Australians & English as our only language ,we had no difficulty in communicating with the staff and crew ,all shows included English and shore excursion are offered in English . Next was food. We found the food in the Taurus restaurant excellent and staff went out of their way to cater for my dietary requirement , they even had a gluten free only section. Smoking is now restricted to very few areas of the ship. Another plus was that we were seated with other English speaking passengers who had the same itinerary as we did. The staff on board are so professional , friendly and helpful. Finally I want to say that was one of the most relaxing and enjoyable cruises we have been on and were sad when it was time to disembark. We have no hesitation in sailing with Costa again 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: March 2014
The ship is beautiful I have to admit, cabin attendant was terrific, our room was always spotless and so was the ship. BUT it was a full cruise and there were not enough waiters and bar staff to handle the passengers. You felt rushed at ... Read More
The ship is beautiful I have to admit, cabin attendant was terrific, our room was always spotless and so was the ship. BUT it was a full cruise and there were not enough waiters and bar staff to handle the passengers. You felt rushed at dinner, and I guess that's ok, since the food was so bad, you couldn't eat several of the courses. Appatizers were ok, soup and salad they can't mess up but the entrée was terrible. Very small portions, and some of what we got didn't even look like what we ordered. For an Italian ship I was very upset that all the pasta dishes were so under cooked and gummy, and cold. The waiter at our table could have cared less, and as we did, most of the passengers complained about the food. The buffet was just as bad, and we stopped going for breakfast since everything was cold and under cooked. We feel that food and service is 50% of a good cruise experience. And this one left a very bad taste in our mouths, litteraly. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2014
We have done 11 transatlantic crossings. I am reluctant to ever answer the question as to which was the best or worst. I have never posted a review prior to this, but felt compelled this time for two reasons. Very few, on this board ... Read More
We have done 11 transatlantic crossings. I am reluctant to ever answer the question as to which was the best or worst. I have never posted a review prior to this, but felt compelled this time for two reasons. Very few, on this board comment on Costa, and most I have read tend to be somewhat negative about many aspects. We have been on many lines over the past 20 years. Costa is very European. Out of the 2200 plus onboard, only 40+ were Americans, English language, thanks to the Aussies, Brits, and Swedes was not non-existent but very hidden.Announcements were in multiple languages, but many times English was not included. In spite of many comments, the food was very acceptable, even better some evenings. The service was as good as any we have had. Wait staff was professional, wanting to please, and remembered our individual "favorites" from night to night. We had a table mate, who was a strict gluten-free, and she was given very special attention and menus at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Costa has found ways to trim the budget, which is probably not unique to them. If you need six to ten towels a day for pool, etc. you will be disappointed. They give you two beach towels at the beginning of the cruise, and you are expected to use those (trading them out as often as you want), but no more. Other measures, that would fall into this category, are evident, but these are small inconveniences, and, for us, did not stand in the way of great enjoyment. Two areas deserve special recognition. The bartenders were among the best we have ever encountered. We had the all-inclusive package, and, though pricey, was a great addition to our cruise. They meet you, remember you, and try to please...maybe the best we've ever encountered. The wait staff in the dining room was outstanding...very experienced, brought us many items by special order...and quickly. We were in early seating at 6:15 and always out of dining room by 7:45, contrary to some reviews about slow service. Yes, some of the Italians, French, and Germans would not be patient enough to stand in lines, but this was not a majority, and we have been to Europe so many times, it has become something we accommodate and laugh about. We were blessed with wonderful weather, great ports, and "spot on" navigation and maneuvering of the ship. Costa, with its obvious distractions with Concordia, should be proud of its ability to provide us with a wonderful experience. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2014
If you are an American that has been to Europe, and are familiar with the Italian way of life, then this is a pleasant experience! Costa does not cater to Americans, so don't expect it! Instead, enjoy the great value, the beautiful ... Read More
If you are an American that has been to Europe, and are familiar with the Italian way of life, then this is a pleasant experience! Costa does not cater to Americans, so don't expect it! Instead, enjoy the great value, the beautiful ship, and 10 days at some of the best ports of call! (I am not on any ship for the dessert choices or lobster). We had a great room and cabin steward, a great dinner table with 8 like minded Americans who made the trip more fun, and a great overall experience. I enjoy Costa because it is like being on a vacation within a vacation, being around other nationalities is fun for me. I speak and understand Spanish lightly, and can get by with a little bit of Italian. On board the ship, the staff and bartenders are on their own relaxed pace, which is a European thing. Americans want everything now and crave instant, undivided attention which is not going to happen, so be patient and all will be fine! The food is good, but don't expect American portions or details. The food is good, and in small portions in the dining room because it is European to have more courses and less food. The buffets are geared towards the Mediterranean way of eating, which is fine, but a change if you aren't aware. The coffee is strong for me, but they do have American instant coffee available too! Keep in mind, the culture shock of different nationalities and you will enjoy your time. Costa Luminosa was clean and we'll kept which made me proud when we were in port next to other ships that were older and weren't kept up as well. I felt safe and comfortable with the way the Costa crew ran everything from safety to excursions. Will definitely cruise again!   Read Less
Sail Date: March 2014
This was my first cruise with Costa and last as many others on that ship expressed. I cruised with Royal, Carnival and MSC before and never had a bad experience. My family is not picky but the service is awful except the cabinet steward ... Read More
This was my first cruise with Costa and last as many others on that ship expressed. I cruised with Royal, Carnival and MSC before and never had a bad experience. My family is not picky but the service is awful except the cabinet steward who was so nice to me and the kids and the upgrade we received without asking to a balcony. The food is awful and the activities are limited. People at our table left the dinner table the 1st 2 nights of the cruise because everything they ordered was bad. The quality some what improved slightly after that. After the nightly show there is absolutely nothing to eat and no food stations are open except the "soggy" pizza station which if you try it once will not go there again. Even the Italian's on board had the same opinion. Table Tennis, Footsball, and mini golf are for fee. The captain never bothered to welcome us on board on loud speaker like the custom on other cruises is. We saw a glimpse of him when he came down to waive at us the last gala night. Gala dinners (2) where exactly the same. No lobster like on carnival or Royal, nothing special except the free glass of Champagne. At breakfast or lunch you can not find a place to sit at the buffet . The ship is narrower than the other we sailed on before and we had to take the food to a bench outside to eat. The breakfast in the main dining room is exactly the same as the buffet , the only difference is they bring you the coffee and juice the rest of the food is a buffet style so go and get it. The worst of all they have no ATM on board and you can not get any money off the credit card on file so if you ran out of money. Tough luck. I will never sail on Costa again. Waste of money and time. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2014
Costa Luminosa -Feb. 5 – 15, 2014  Bahamas, Grand Turk, Grand Cayman, Ocho Rios, Roatan and Cozumel. Embarkation : Our hotel assigned a leave time of 10:45 a.m. so we arrived early (11:30) to the terminal. Porters there to take our ... Read More
Costa Luminosa -Feb. 5 – 15, 2014  Bahamas, Grand Turk, Grand Cayman, Ocho Rios, Roatan and Cozumel. Embarkation : Our hotel assigned a leave time of 10:45 a.m. so we arrived early (11:30) to the terminal. Porters there to take our luggage....we're coming and departing passengers are trying to get away. Bit confusing. We stood around for about ½ hour and then entered the building, we were given our “section” number and sent off to fill out our health forms. Then the “Disney” style line to the counter where we showed our passport, boarding form and health form. Once our papers were stamped “completed”, we were directed to go and sit in our “numbered section”. This is a bit of a joke....there aren't near enough seats and the representative couldn't keep track of where everyone was going and many just stood or parked themselves on the floor. Very disorganized and I'm not sure why this seating was necessary. Refreshments were available as were bathrooms. DO NOT TAKE PHOTOS. Someone took a photo of friends/family sitting in the chairs and a rep almost broke her neck to get there and tell them not to take any more photos. Started boarding the ship about 1:00 p.m. We showed our passport and boarding pass and our photo was taken for our “key”. Our rooms were not ready, so we were sent to deck 9 to Self Serve Restaurant. Room 4336 : An announcement was made about 2:30 that we could get in our rooms. Our luggage, cabin key cards, lifeboat drill card and dinner seating info were all in our room. 4336 is an outside obstructed room with a huge floor to ceiling window...there is a lifeboat outside, but it is situated so that we could see thru the windows of the lifeboat to the shore or water. Don't leave the curtains open....they clean these boats at 7:00a.m.! Lots of light. Queen size bed, plus the couch will open up and another bed will drop down from the ceiling. There is only a bottom sheet and then a duvet on the bed.....we asked for a top sheet, it was handed to my husband and he threw it on top of the bed. There was a large desk area with mirror, storage under the desk, a couch and small table, tv, safe, hairdryer, lots of lighting, beach towels, and a refrigerator full of beer, pop, water, liquor and candy (we saw no price list, but I'm sure it's not cheap). We asked to have our refrig emptied so we could use it for our own things. There is a three section closet....2 sections for hanging clothes and one section with 5 shelves and the safe. Bring some hangars (14 in our cupboard and one was broke). Nice sized bathroom with lots of hot water and a high shower head. There was a small square of soap for the sink and there is liquid soap in the shower. On this ship, the spa does not supply “samples” for your use. I suggest you bring your own shampoo/conditioner and soap. Our soap square got very thin and was not automatically replaced....my husband had to ask for another one. There was no washcloth....I carry the little compacted ones that revive with water and when the cabin steward saw it, washcloths were put in the room. However, the dirty ones would disappear and not be replaced. (Washcloths are in some of the public restrooms and are used to dry hands....I snitched two and kept them in our room just in case.) All in all, a really nice, big room we were very happy with. Our cabin steward was another story....at midnight, that top sheet was still on top of the bed as was the luggage cloth....and he either didn't sweep our room or the sweeper was useless. There were plastic clothing tags on the floor when we moved in (which we left) and they were still there when we left and yes, we did ask to have the room swept. My husband wanted to steal a sweeper and do it himself! The ship sailed at 11:00 p.m. (yes, you read that right). You do get to see Miami with all the lights on and there's not much to do all the time you're waiting for the ship to leave so you have lots of time to unpack and get situated in your cabin. Lifeboat drill was at 10:15 p.m. Yes, you read that right too. Bunch of tired people (and children) out on the deck at 10:30 at night listening to the life boat drill announcements in 5 or 6 languages (Italian, English, Spanish, French, German and I swear there was a sixth language) and the crew is trying to make everyone stand in lines with women in the front and men in the rear and that's when we realized that this cruise was going to be one massive language problem. Beverages : At lunch the first day (still in Miami), the bar staff was pushing the beverage package.....$260. for soda, wine, drinks and fou-fou coffee and here's the catch.....if there are two people in your cabin, you BOTH have to sign up for the beverage package, so that's $520. (this price probably varies depending on length of cruise.) Check the flyers.....there is also a water package, a boys & girls non-alcoholic pkg, coffee packages, etc. We did the boys & girls pack ($55.20 for 20 fruit/pop cocktails....5 to choose from altho 1 was no longer available on day 2!) You can get juices, coffee and hot tea in the buffet in the morning and then water, ice tea, coffee and hot tea for lunch and dinner. Your beverage choice in the diningroom is water unless you carry in your own drink or you have a wine package. We were told it would take too long to go to the bar to get one of our fruit cocktails so we carried them in to dinner. Coke products will cost you $2.95, Red Bull-$6.00, beer-$5.00, cappuccino-$2.60, cocktail-$8.00. Coffee at dinner is for AFTER the meal and I don't care how many times you ask and then you still might not get it! After a few nights, I just gave up....we got up from dinner and went to the buffet and got our coffee. Meals : You know the cruises where there is food all the time....well, this ain't one of them and then good luck! You might actually go on this cruise ship and lose weight. Breakfast in your room : Will cost you $2.50 service fee...rest of your order might be free but we didn't try this and the menu doesn't specify. Breakfast in the buffet : Great....go back to the pool area and you can get eggs, bacon, sausage, waffles, grilled tomatoes and such without too much trouble. Course you have to work your way around the people in line waiting to get made to order eggs and omelets. But it's still less busy then the other areas. The wait staff does NOTHING but clean off tables and honestly, some aren't that good at that either. Sometimes they reset tables with wrapped silver. They don't help handicapped carry food, they don't get drinks unless you show your card that you're buying a drink and then that's a bar staff, and not a wait person. They will get baby chairs if you ask. Breakfast in the Taurus diningroom....they seat you at the table they are filling at the moment so chances are you will be seated with Europeans who don't speak English or else don't admit to speaking English. This is pretty much just another buffet unless you pointedly ask for the breakfast menu and actually get to order from it. Hope you get an English speaking waiter. Bonus....coffee does appear at the beginning of your meal! Lunch in the buffet....good luck. All the food lines may or may not be open at any given time and your choice will be limited. You will be able to make a very decent salad if you wander around to all the food lines to get what you want because they are not all the same....they won't all have carrots and cukes and onions, and each will have different lunch meats and cheeses. You can actually get some exercise tracking down your cobb salad ingredients. On a good day, they will have chicken or pork you can recognize....on a bad day (and there was more than one) you will find octopus stew and they will be slicing an octopus for the main meat. Take heart....there is a pizza buffet (it's chintzy but it's there) and if you head for the pool area, you will find hamburgers, hotdogs, french fries and such. Snag dessert and take it back to your room to put in your empty frig so you have something to snack on after an unsatisfactory dinner. Afternoon Tea : from 4:00 – 5:00. In the buffet, a selection of small sandwiches, desserts and pastries, tea and coffee. The lunch buffet is still open as well, so you might want to do this for your dinner and skip the evening hassle. Dinner : Buffet : If you normally eat around 5:30, your choice is going to be whatever they are serving out of the pizza buffet as the regular buffet shuts down at 5:00. They will have a few pizzas (with nothing on them...seriously, I watched a baby eat a piece of pizza and she didn't make a mess...there's nothing on the pizza to make a mess), rolls and about 4 hot dishes (watch for the octopus stew....it didn't go at lunch so it reappears for dinner). Salad will be 4 different kinds of lettuce, some radish slices and three kinds of salad dressing (no ranch the day we went). That's dinner in the buffet. No dessert and the ice cream machine is torn down with the rest of the buffet before 5. Dinner : Taurus Diningroom : You eat at either 6:30 or 9:15. We had a table for 2 which we didn't like and asked to be changed to a table with “other people” and this was no problem at all. Right up front, I didn't like eating here, but since the so called buffet was a bust, I was stuck. Keep in mind, this is suppose to be haute cuisine. You do have a lot of courses to choose from so you can skip anything or have everything. There was an appetizer, soup, salad, pasta, the entree, cheeses and finally dessert. Here's an example.....”Costata di manzo al sugo naturale” which translates to “Medium roasted American prime rib of beef served with natural sauce, grilled potato and broccoli”. Yes, the translations are there, but they are not always helpful. And what you actually get is about 5 tiny pieces of potato, three small broccoli florets in the center of the huge plate and a thin slice of beef covering the veggies. Always, the tiny portion of potatoes and vegetable are covered by the meat. Have no idea why they hide the sides. Had a few good appetizers, not counting the cuttle fish I tried just because I'd never had it before or even seen it on a menu, but for the most part, thank heavens for the front page of the menu that is “Always Available”....I ate spaghetti with bolognase sauce and the fish grilled in lemon butter. I'm told that they did have a children's menu with burgers and hotdogs on it. One little girl ate spaghetti every night. Yes, they do have vegetarian choices each night and they also offer gluten free meals. F Y I : We just got water to drink for dinner and most nights we only got one glass of water, no refill. We discovered the very first night of dinner that those with wine and mineral water got better wait service than we did, even at the same table as us. Our wait staff served the table behind us as well and they had no problem with their service at all. Coffee...if you ask for decaf, they may bring you a single serve Sanka pack. But don't expect to have coffee with your meal or even your dessert....my husband sat with his dessert and waited on coffee. Finally gave up and ate his dessert.....then they brought coffee. This is all about European dining.....oh and by the way, no escargot. My husband very disappointed! We didn't eat in the pay restaurant, so don't know anything about that. What To Do : First off, see that big movie screen on the Lido deck....it's not for movies. This screen, for 10 days, was the Costa channel...offering Costa tours and other Costa information. Day and night. There is a 4D Movie theater....had 2 kids' animated movies and another “thrill” ride....same movies the entire trip at $8.00 each person. Movie theatre seats 20 people. Didn't do. Watched thru a window and no one seemed “thrilled”. There is a walking track with an adjacent Quadline Skate track....the walking is free (until they figure out how to charge you for that as well) and the Quadline skates can be rented for $5.00 an hour. There is a golf simulator and putting green...$30. and up. Putting green is $5.00 for ½ hour. Race car simulator...$24.00 for 13 minutes. Various contests with the Animators (cruise social staff)...do participate. The games are fun, the animators are young and crazy and you will have a good time. And you might win a hat or travel bag. Crafts...napkin origami, painting, beading, crepe paper flowers. Free. Adults only. Dance and exercise classes. Health seminars every day to try to sell you something. Library.... it doesn't have very many English books...has some games as well. Are all locked up so you must go when library is “open”....better yet, take books with you, read them and donate them to the library. Then you don't have to worry about a $15. lost book fee. And that will leave an empty space in your luggage for souvenirs you had to have. This is where the internet area is and it is open 24 hours. About 6 computers. Didn't use it so have no details. Pools....there are two that close at 8 or 9 p.m. Hot tubs too. Dancing.....every night there is lots and lots of music, partying and dancing. Phoenix Theatre Shows : generally two shows a night at 7:30 and 9:15 (approx.) These shows for the most part are excellent. Vegas style shows with Vegas style costumes. The singers were fantastic, a magician very good, the dancers very professional. There was an opera singer (it is an Italian ship) who did one show and I'm told it was standing room only. Be aware, the shows will have English and Italian singing/music, but it's still all good! Don't miss the shows. Except maybe the last one...the passenger talent show, 1 show only and it was at 10:45 p.m. Ridiculous time for a show! Shopping : It's a cruise ship. You can shop. Liquor. Lots of jewelry. Sales almost every day in the hallway. Cheap buy....one of the shops has silk drawstring jewelry bags for $1.00 each....good for Christmas/birthday packaging. Forgot to bring?.....sun protection: a large bottle of Australian Gold for $15.00, White Rain Shampoo- large bottle for $5.29, large tube of toothpaste is $2.00. Squok Club : This is pretty much a baby sitting service, open varying hours depending on if it is a port day or a sea day. For ages 3 to 11 and appears to be free. You can also make arrangements to leave your child in the Squok Club while you do a tour in a port. There is a teen club as well with their own disco and games. Laundry : There is no self serve laundry. Laundry cost is as follows....man's shirt to wash & dry- $5.00, woman's blouse-$5.00, dress-$16.50, trousers-$8.70. Everything comes on a hangar. If you want them folded, add $.20 to each item. HOWEVER..... Two days before the end of the trip, we were given a flyer that allowed us to have 25 pieces of clothing washed, pressed and folded for $29.99. This was a great perk for anyone doing a back to back cruise. They may not offer this on all cruises. Pack a couple clothespins. Wash your undies in your bathroom sink and hang them up on the clothesline in your shower. Most will dry overnight. And of course, you have the opportunity to scare the daylights out of your cabin steward! Languages : this was a big problem and the one thing Americans and Canadians didn't like and soon we all commented that we were tired of it. Announcements will definitely be made in Italian, and generally in English, French, Spanish and German, BUT not all the time. I imagine it depends on who's available when they need to make an announcement. And even if it is in English, you may not be able to understand it. Announcements are not heard in the cabin (at least not in ours) and often are garbled in the hallways and forget about the public areas. Very annoying was at the evening shows....when the cruise director would come out and say his little speech, he did it first in Italian and at the end, he said “Ciao” and immediately, the Italians got up and left. Very few other people did that until by the second week, we were all tired of being polite. Formal Night : You do not need formal clothes or suit and tie. Wear the same thing you wear any other night...blue jeans, capris, golf shorts. Almost anything goes. This ship has what is called the Multimedia Totems. This is like a super sized computer screen where you can access ship information, book your tickets for the movie theatre, book time at the race car simulator, make reservations in the pay restaurant, schedule golf, sign up for the cruise survey and much more. Also on this ship, within 48 hours, you will have to find an Automatic Registration Device and register your credit card to pay for your expenses or make other arrangements. This info will be in your TODAY (the daily schedule). You are also suppose to be able to purchase tours on your interactive tv in your room, but our “menu” button didn't work, so don't know how that works at all. Medical : Don't get sick, you can't afford it. Costs are listed on the back of TODAY...visit during medical hours is $70. and a cabin visit is $101. Sea sick medication is suppose to be free at Customer Service. Photos : Embarkation photos were $19.99. Prices vary on other photos. Photos are in locked cabinets but will eventually end up in boxes that you have to sort thru. And yes, they do take all the special set up photos in the evenings. Public Restrooms : They have no door handles. Doors are automatic...pass your hand in front of the “light” to get in. The hand dryers are almost worthless, so is nice that they have washcloths in some of the restrooms. Restrooms were always clean and in working order. Pause in front of the door and it will open to let you out. Smoking : People in previous reviews have complained about the smoking....we are non-smokers and had no issues with any smokers. Debarkation : This might not apply to all cruises.....On the last full day, we were required to attend a meeting, in our language, where we learned about luggage tags and debarkation instructions. Your colored luggage tags and paperwork will appear in your room and the TODAY on debarkation day will tell you what time you are to report to a specific area to start debarkation. We had to have our luggage out by 1:00 a.m. Saturday morning and we had to be out of our rooms by 8:00 a.m. Saturday morning. We ate breakfast and then just hung around where ever we could til it was our turn. Make sure you have your luggage color stub with you, because they checked them and held you back if you tried to sneak out early. You can get your tags changed if necessary. We were not docked at a terminal...we were the last ship in a long line and we were in the area where they store shipping containers. Since we had a shuttle coming from a hotel, we were scheduled to get off in the next to last group at 11:00 and they were running behind about ½ hour. We had to wait our turn to get into the theatre to pass before the immigration/custom officials. Once our papers were stamped, we were escorted off the ship where we had to go thru a huge tent to retrieve our luggage (12:30) and then out into a very disorganized parking lot to find our ride. Some people had to do some serious walking to get to their transportation. AND, new passengers were arriving to board the ship. We had to walk “to the other side of the fence” to get our ride as he wasn't allowed in the general pick-up area. We arrived back at our hotel at 1:30. Bottom line : Our first trip on Costa. We specifically wanted to go to Turks and Grand Cayman on one trip. We were watching two cruise lines and we finally booked this trip because they reduced the price and the other company didn't. We won't book another Costa trip. We discovered we didn't like the constant language problem (many of the staff spoke poor English), the food was unappealing so we tended to eat the same thing day in and day out, we found the Europeans rude including the ships officers who never seem to smile and will bump you as you walk by. We saw a waiter in the diningroom bump an elderly gentlemen hard enough to almost knock him down. It's like polite is not a part of the vocabulary on this ship. Talking to other Americans and Canadians, we all were pretty happy with our cabins, but felt the ship was lacking in cabin service, dining service, food variety and food availability. And we were all tired of the language problems. We got the cruise and a great room at a great sale price, so we got what we paid for....but we've had better....perhaps we'll pay more next time. 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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