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LEGEND VS VOYAGER: KIDS REVIEW
Reviewed by Mackenzie Beardsell, aged 10
It was the first cruise
was so excited about our
There were a heap of
activities that I couldn’t wait
to try – especially the famous
Green Thunder waterslide.
On our holiday there was my mum, dad,
sister and another family – so there was
always someone to play with.
The cruise headed around the South
Pacific for 10 days so we left Sydney
and stopped at places like Noumea and
As soon as we got on the ship and
unpacked, my sister and I went exploring.
The Green Thunder was the first thing I did.
And boy, was it fun! I couldn’t get enough
of it. I went every chance I got.
We did lots of activities on the ship
because there was plenty to do.
My sister, friends and I played ping
pong, golf, watched heaps of movies, played
basketball, just to name a few things. We
were never bored because there was always
something new to do.
When we docked at the different islands
and destinations, we did heaps of shore
excursions. There were also water activities
like swimming and snorkelling.
We were always so exhausted by the end
of the day!
The best part about the cruise was that
we didn’t have to hang around our parents
all the time. So it really felt like we were
The staff were all so helpful and we always
felt safe running around the ship – it was
heaps of fun exploring and doing things by
ourselves. There was always someone on the
lookout for us.
In case mum and dad wanted to get into
contact with us, and obviously they couldn’t
text us, we would leave notes for each other
in a letterbox outside our room.
Our room attendant, who made our beds
and cleaned our room, was so nice. And
when we would see him around the ship, he
would always say hi to us and help us out.
And our waiter at dinner was so funny!
He was always telling us jokes so we were
always laughing at dinner.
The food was so yummy on the cruise.
We ate the same things that mum and dad
ate, but we always had second servings of
dessert. There were heaps of different cakes,
ice-cream, jelly, mousse and lots more.
I loved the cruise so much that I am
already pestering mum and dad to go
VOYAGER OF THE SEAS
Reviewed by Tex Templeman, aged 11
This was my first time on
Royal Caribbean’s Voyager
of the Seas but mum, dad
and I have been on lots of
cruises before. Mum is a
travel writer so we’ve done
lots of great trips!
My biggest challenge – catching a ride of
the famous FlowRider. I had heard heaps of
good reviews and the videos looked so cool.
It was a short family holiday – we went
from Darwin to Brisbane on a six-night
cruise. And because there were no shore
excursions, I was just really excited about
trying all the activities.
The FlowRider was the first thing that I
tried. It was hard – I couldn’t stand up but
the instructors gave the kids boogie boards
so we managed to surf the waves.
CARNIVAL LEGEND VS VOYAGER OF THE SEAS
They showed us some pretty fancy flips
Mum, dad and I did some rock climbing,
we went to the DreamWorks parade, played
some golf and even had breakfast with Shrek,
Fiona and Puss in Boots.
I love rock climbing – it was harder than
it looked but I managed to scale up the green
wall and then ring the bell. Mum and dad
were mighty proud of me.
I met a few kids at the kids’ clubs and
made some new friends. We did a tonne of
activities together. And it was nice because
it meant mum and dad could spend some
alone time together.
The other thing that made the trip was
that the staff were so friendly and especially
our room attendant. He was so entertaining
and so funny and always remembered
If I ever wanted to wander around by
myself, mum and dad always felt safe letting
me go. As I get older, they get more and
It helps that the staff are so friendly and
helpful, and there are plenty of kids’ clubs
where I can meet other kids my own age. I’m
an only child but a cruise ship is the perfect
place to make new friends, whether they are
older or younger.
The food on our holiday was delicious –
my favourite meal time was breakfast. On
the kids menu, the ham and cheese omelette
was so yummy. I think I had one every day!
And how could anyone go past all the
desserts! I couldn’t pick which one was
I can’t wait for the next cruise and for the
next adventure with mum and dad.
It’s a tough job but someone’s got to
do it... two of our youngest reviewers
tell us about the fun they had at sea.
Ithink that it is good that huge
ships are still banned from the
Giudecca Canal in Venice (at
least until the end of this year).
Their vibration impact must
surely damage the foundations
of those centuries-old buildings.
I have always tipped my cabin
boy and table waiter. It’s a nice
gesture and I don’t need a
shipping company to tell me
about a compulsory gratuities
scheme. Cruise lines need to
address this rip-off as passengers
outside the American culture
have had enough. Tipping is a
personal thing, so it should be
left to passengers’ discretion.
Cruise industry expert
Distribution of gratuity charges
and remuneration of staff is an
internal commercial matter for
cruise lines, as for any business.
However, guests always have the
option to reward specific staff
members directly should they
choose to do so.
Brett Jardine, general manager,
In Australia we do not do
gratuities or tips. We pay our price
and that is all. if other countries
want to have us as customers
they should work within our
customs. If I was going to their
country I would think it fair to pay
extra costs as they do.
Cruise lines should exercise
more transparency so guests
understand where their money
is going. A gratuity is something
guests should be free to give to
their favourite staff, not a fee to
supplement wages. Scenic Tours
asks passengers to rate their stay
and staff, then rewards crew that
score more than 90 per cent. We
think this is an admirable system.
QUEEN OF THE SMALL SCREEN
Iam writing to express my
delight at the prize won in
the competition associated with
voting for my favourite cruise line.
I never win competitions, so was
surprised when a few heartfelt
words about my favourite cruise
line won me an iPad mini. I had
been thinking about getting a
smaller device to take cruising
with me, so its arrival was timely
and I am looking forward to using
it on my next cruise to Alaska
with my favourite cruise line -
SMOKE WITHOUT IRE
Yet another cruise line making
stupid decisions and letting
the minority rule. I am not a
smoker, but my husband is.
When we cruise, he smokes on
the balcony, not in the cabin. The
smoke floats out to sea, he doesn’t
blow it into anyone’s face. We
no longer sail on ships that don’t
allow smoking on the balcony.
NOT LONG ENOUGH
Francesco Schettino was jailed
for 16 years for his part in the
Concordia disaster. That ’s only six
months for every life lost. How
would you feel if it was one of
Tell us what’s on your mind at: cruisepassenger.com.au
Here’s a tip:
When Nor wegian Cruise Lines
announced a US$0.95 increase in
gratuities to US$12.95 a day, we
knew there would be a reaction. There are few
subjects that raise the ire of cruise passengers as
much as tipping. We were not disappointed.
Our readers responded with a series
of complaints – mainly about the lack of
transparency. And certainly, some lines look as
if they are guilty as charged.
P&O Australia, Princess Cruises, Scenic
Tours and Avalon Water ways include the cost
of gratuities when cruisers book and pay for
their holidays. Others, like Royal Caribbean,
itemise gratuities on your bill. Guests have the
option of whether they wish to pay the fee.
These are the good guys. After this, things
Other lines add extra gratuity fees for spa
treatments, bars and excursions. Guests are
sometimes unaware of this, and sometimes
leave even more cash.
Lines like Silversea include gratuities in the
fare but say ser vices received shore side or in the
spa are at the guests’ discretion.
Ponant recommends a figure to its
guests, but again, payment is discretionary.
A spokesperson from Ponant said: “It is not
compulsory to provide gratuities, however we
suggest an amount of 10 to 12 euros per day,
per person, the total amount of which to be
distributed among the crew. “
One Cruise Passenger reader was happy
to pay $12 a day on a local cruise, but was
unimpressed with the additional gratuity
charges added on.
“I thought the $12 per person per day
gratuity charge on my last cruise was
reasonable, but I did get annoyed at the
additional 18 per cent gratuity that was added
on to just about everything else on board. Even
the shore excursions!”
Other readers like Judith Roberts want more
transparency when paying the gratuities. “On
Holland America in 2014 I don’t think we
had a choice – $11 or $12 per person per day
just added to the account. Not to say that the
ser vice wasn’t good – the crew were fabulous,
but it would be nice to make the tipping
decision for yourself.”
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