Welcome to Bolsover Cruise Club Forum

Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to contribute to the Cruise Club Forum by submitting your own content or replying to existing content. You'll be able to customize your profile, receive reputation points as a reward for submitting content, while also communicating with other members via your own private inbox, plus much more!

This message will be removed once you have signed in.

Land Ahoy

Poor Service On Cruises - What's Your Views?

16 posts in this topic

Hi  Having read a few comments about tipping, a few comments have referred to not wishing to pay gratuities for poor or indifferent service while undertaking a cruise.  I have cruised quite frequently (over fifty times) and I can state that I have never experienced poor service on any cruise.  There have been minor inconveniences on a few occasions but they haven't had any major influence on the overall cruise experience.   Have I been fortunate and have you ever experienced bad service throughout a cruise?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

very occasionally,twice we have had waiting staff who were so slow we were at dinner for well over 2 hours every night, the food was always cold by the time we received it. Once we had a cabin steward who never made up the cabin until about 5pm or not at all and if we asked for anything, for example ice, we never received it.When we reminded him he would just say he had forgot and would do it tomorrow but he never did.About 15 years ago we had a cruise on Oriana and we would go into Tiffany s for a drink -if we could get served. There were often 5 staff 'waiting' even less customers but they were just not serving just standing round chatting. I suggested on the end of cruise questionnaire that drinks staff be given a commission on everything they sold to encourage prompt service.But it put us off cruising for a few years.But my first cruise was 1976 so these are rare occurrences.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi  Having read a few comments about tipping, a few comments have referred to not wishing to pay gratuities for poor or indifferent service while undertaking a cruise.  I have cruised quite frequently (over fifty times) and I can state that I have never experienced poor service on any cruise.  There have been minor inconveniences on a few occasions but they haven't had any major influence on the overall cruise experience.   Have I been fortunate and have you ever experienced bad service throughout a cruise?

 

No.

 

There may have been the odd occasion on a cruise where it was not fabulous, but never poor.

 

On my most recent cruise the service varied from very good to exceptional.

 

I have said before that there are four of us, which means (on our chosen line) that the service charge works out at $46 per day - I could never claim that we had not received $46 worth of service every day.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Never had bad service from waiters to want me to cancel gratuities but did have bad service from a cabin steward on Oriana and went to reception to see about removinhg his part of the auto gratuity but was told you couldnt stop his part it would mean if I reduced it by a third it would mean the waiters would have their portion reduced by a third. Was told that even if you removed auto gratuity and paid in cash to waiters and didnt give cabin steward any money he would still get part of the cash payment because the waiters have to hand that in and it goes in general pot. So we left auto gratuities on and made a formal complaint about the cabin steward which she recommended us to do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only time we encountered poor service was the second week of our B2B on the Serenade last Jan. The waiter at our table for 4 just had to many tables and was overwhelmed. We helped him out by moving to a different section at another table for 4 with the same waiter we had the first week.


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wouldn't say I've ever experienced terrible service on board. There was one sailing with P&O on Ventura in 2010 where we found service slow, especially in the dining rooms but it was rectified after we voiced our dissatisfaction. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have generally had very good service on our cruises.  When we had slow service in the dining room on one cruise we mentioned it to the Maitre d' and from then on had no complaints.  Many cruise lines seem to be reducing staff in most areas, which I am sure causes stress, but this is not shown in the attitude of staff to their customers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We tend to consider service relative to waiters and bar staff, but it can also relate to short-sighted management decisions.

In May we carried our own bags off Azura to get an early start for a long journey, and avoid rush hour traffic.

Fred Olsen do not allow this so we were late disembarking, the polarised disembarkation meant that we waited 25 minutes for a "Cruise Parking" shuttle, and we caught Friday afternoon rush hour traffic on the M1, the overall effect being that we arrived home 4 hours later than previously.

This converts to a lot of bad feeling in comparison to waiting a few minutes longer than expected for your "crème caramel" to arrive. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is bad service? All the crew work hard and try to all they can for you.

I have seen some people being so rude to the staff, and think they have servants, I am sure I would tell them where to get off, but the crew just seem to take it in there stride. These days seems to me all have such a heavy work load, and on port days, some only get a hour or two off, so end up having a sleep one not going ashore at all.

Falmouthgirl likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, I have experienced bad service on cruise ships in the same way as you can get bad service in hotels and restaurants. Waiting a long time between courses, ordering drinks and then waiting unacceptable times for them to be delivered, surly attitude from staff.  Remember however we are dealing with human beings who can have an off day or have become disgruntled with their lot. It has to said, I have found that the quality of service, like food, is equal to the price the cruise is sold at. I have also found that the bad service and indeed food I have experienced has been in the main with one particular company. I will not mention who they are as I have no wish to become embroiled in lengthy posts with their admirers. As always, just my opinion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Having read this thread the question I have, in mind, is one of how many reward just acceptable behaviour rather than that which is better than anticipated? If you have had a poor wine waiter, for whatever reason, do you still tip as they are perceived to be on such low wages that we feel obliged to do so irrespective of the service give. If you pay the same per person that a family of 4 can pay for a holiday do you expect the same service as them or better in which case, if the service is no better, then why tip?

On my last cruise I waited an age to order a bottle of wine, complained to three different levels if staff in the restuarant only to see them doing much talking but no action. The solution woukd have been for one of the officers to get the wine rather than have me even more annoyed. Should I have tipped? As the saying goes "there is no I in team" so perhaps we shoukd shiw our disaaproval of poor service by withdrawing all tips unless your holiday is good.

Food for thought.

Oldworldtraveller likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's all very subjective isn't it? one persons perception of bad service can be totally different to another's, similarly with people's expectations.

Me personally have withdrawn gratuities twice, one reason being the attitude of the cabin stewards following a genuine complaint, some I know disagree and state that why punish all because of two cabin stewards, well as far as I'm concerned all crew represent the cruiseline, if one has a detrimental effect on my experience then it's their problem not mine, this particular experience made the whole cruise uncomfortable, especially when the said stewards refused to acknowledge me and my family throughout the remainder of the cruise.

Having been involved in several gratuity threads since I joined the forum, I have taken the decision to withdraw gratuities on future cruises and pay those who serve me well, at least that way I have total control of who I pay, if they then decide to poll their reward it's up to them.

HLM.

Captain Kidd II and seawitch like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Never,  I have always thought they do their best for us, I recently returned fro a 6 day cruise with my granddaughter, they were all wonderful, from the steward with balloons etc, to the  self serve staff  they went out of their way to make our cruise enjoyable, as for slow service that is usually down to cuts and too many tables likewise the wine waiters. They were so good we gave the cabin steward extra,  which we don't normally do, as some one else mentioned they are only human and they way some speak to them is   disgraceful.CG

 

I

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When working I worked on a project on customer service which included training staff. We spent a lot of time demonstrating how 2 people following the same rules gave very different levels of service. It was surprising how many people saw nothing wrong in the 'poor' service thinking it was acceptable or even good. Only when you get used to receiving excellent service do you start to recognize when service is poor.  

Captain Kidd II likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Never, I have always thought they do their best for us, I recently returned fro a 6 day cruise with my granddaughter, they were all wonderful, from the steward with balloons etc, to the self serve staff they went out of their way to make our cruise enjoyable, as for slow service that is usually down to cuts and too many tables likewise the wine waiters. They were so good we gave the cabin steward extra, which we don't normally do, as some one else mentioned they are only human and they way some speak to them is disgraceful.CG

I

I'm glad you and granddaughter had a wonderful time CG but that's what the waiters do isn't it? I've had similar with my grandchildren they entertain them with napkin foldings, balloons, magic tricks etc, nothing above and beyond and actually normal on most ships I've sailed.

I'm not sure you'd agree, but sometimes we've found it over attentive, interrupting meals which intern slowed down service for other table guests, and if I'm being honest I felt they were only doing it for the extra envelope at the end of the cruise.

All I'm after is consistent service without all the unnecessary extras in order to get an extra tip, it's blatantly obvious sometimes.

I like you do agree that some people talk to the crew disgracefully, no need for it in any circumstances, manners cost nothing.

HLM.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When working I worked on a project on customer service which included training staff. We spent a lot of time demonstrating how 2 people following the same rules gave very different levels of service. It was surprising how many people saw nothing wrong in the 'poor' service thinking it was acceptable or even good. Only when you get used to receiving excellent service do you start to recognize when service is poor.

Absolutely 100% agree Seawitch.

To me all excellent service needs to be is consistent, I don't need someone to be over assertive or attentive, for just in my opinion to get a little extra money at the end of the cruise, I just want consistency and if I get it they'll still benefit, if they over do it they won't.

HLM.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now