Here's my list. A few things worse, many better, and some just plain funny. MSC Staff
IMO worse than ever. Part of it because they hated their job after Holy Ship. Another part because MSC has sent their A staff to the new ship and we were left with the "leftovers"
The biggest issue I observed (and note I'm a man writing this) is that women kept getting ignored at the bar. I had to constantly correct bar tenders that they should serve in order regardless of the customer's gender. One bartender completely ignored my wife and when I finally gave him shit about it he apologized to me but not to her. This is cultural I'm sure, but if you work in a different culture than the one you grew up in you just will have to adapt.
The staff was often rude. A waiter in the restaurant tried to right out scam me. He wanted my drinking tickets but also my room card "for inventory". I may look
One of the cabin staff walked right into our cabin when the key was in the slot. We were not ready for company at that time. At a later discussion his supervisor said that cruisers leave their keys in all the time so they just walk in. I of course responded that we tend to party all night and sleep all day and what schedule we keep on the ship is non of his business. The staff has to adapt to the cruisers, not the other way around.
I have noticed more unprofessional behavior and incidents than I have ever seen on any previous cruise. In one case there was a real safety concern where one of the crew blatantly refused to help. I have taken names and intend to report the worst transgressions to C9. I'm never one to get poorly paid workers in trouble, but there are two things I will not tolerate. One is misogyny or any other form of discrimination and the other one is arrogance about safety issues on a ship. After Holy Ship
I already mentioned the fact that the staff was overworked when we came. Our cabin was not cleaned, we had one dirty robe, the fridge was raided and never re-inventoried, but I made sure we wouldn't get billed for it. Our hangers were broken, half our towels were missing and many more issues. The ship is turned too quickly to deal with it. Our cabin maid did a good job replacing stuff as we found it, but essentially it was on us to do the inventory. Drinks
Just teach the staff how the drinking tickets work already. I'm so tired of having to negotiate every damn time in the ports. It isn't rocket science. Or maybe we should just use the cards in the port. Maybe we should skip drinking tickets all together. It's a mess for us and it doesn't seem to save any time in the bars. And the "use it or lose it" policy isn't exactly fair either. I rather pay for what I use. No BS. As I'm writing this I'm convincing myself that we should get rid of the drinking tickets. It's more of a hassle than a convenience, both for guests and staff. I also second the sentiment that the beer selection could be better. Food
Still better than JC9 and earlier. I personally think it went down somewhat from JC10. Ironically the Indian dishes came out perfectly (the lamb curry was to die for!). A funny moment was when one Italian guy saw me demonstratively poor the soggy mess they called lasagna down on a plate. I just laughed as I did it. What else can you do? He actually blushed. Not his mom's lasagna I bet
. Anyhow, the food doesn't reach my bitching threshold this time so let's move on. The Ports
OK. The only suggestion for improvement is that we should have activities announced ahead of time. The reservation of excursions over the TV didn't work (it was still set for Holy Ship!). The result was that we had no chance to do what we wanted. We did get to enjoy other stuff though so it's no major debacle. Just one of these minor annoyances that would be so easy to fix. I always prefer ports where you get a chance to see something of the local culture and nature, but I also know that it's getting harder and harder to get into such ports. Cruise lines prefer the wholly owned private islands where they can keep all the revenue. One thing that could be improved is the port announcements. I don't know if you noticed, but C9 port announcements only came out in the hallway speakers and was inaudible for the most. MSC announcements goes out in cabins and bars as well. I'm absolutely not in favor of speaker diarrhea, but for important updates, such that we need to bring ID to Turk and Caicos, you probably want to snatch one of the MSC microphones so that people get the message. Even better of course if you can get all the info on the papers that are handed out during the night! A Well Intended Mess
What did you like the new screens in the elevators that said "where the hell am I" and then showed any arbitrary deck regardless where the elevator was. I have never seen so much confusion in and around the elevators. I'm sure it was well ment, but if you really want to help people, don't put up a screen saying "Where the hell am I" if you have no means of telling the viewers where they actually are. It did create a lot of comical situations though. Various Improvements
I don't know what to attribute to MSC and to C9, but I agree with the other posters that said that getting on and off the boat went smoother this year and that opening up a dance floor in the theater was a really good move. Cloud 9
Seriously, the people at C9 pulled together an amazing experience. Second year in a row that it was nothing short of outstanding. C9 staff on board was very helpful and did everything within their power to keep the boat rocking (so did the weather BTW
). Not much you could do better. Yes maybe one thing. Be more active on the forum. You probably read the vibe here (I hope you do!) frequently, but don't be strangers. We love you people, don't be shy! Music
Wow! It was fantastic. Everything you can dream of. You can tell that the artists love Jam Cruise as much as we do. Conflicts are inevitable. Wednesday was tough for me. KDTU + Soul Rebels + Greensky at the same time and then Hot Buttered Rum + Moe at the same time. Can somebody invent human cloning already?! But it was great. The Jam room was better than last year (even when they swapped hosts). The Spot was rocking almost the entire trip. Not a dull moment. I'm still ecstatic! Musicians
What an awesome bunch. Over the years I'm getting to know more of them as persons and it just adds to the whole experience. They are so down to earth and real. When we were picking up snorkle gear at Coco Cay my wife dropped her sunglasses. Immediately the guy behind her picked them up and handed them over like a true gentleman. Just that it was Skerik. This is what I love about the whole jam scene. There are no divas. Jam Cruise brings out the best in people both on and off stage. More than anywhere else the musicians and the audience create music together in some way. I think that's the reason both groups keep coming. Virgins
Never seen so many and it makes me so happy. Everyone I met were awesome people. My first year there was maybe just a tad of clickiness going on at some times by the oldtimers but none of that this year. The noobs clicked right in and fit like a glove. I hope that all of you that went on your first trip feel the same way. Your are now Jamily. Don't forget this forum in between cruises! Costumes
All time high turnout on zebra! I hope there is a zebra lounge on the MSC Divina, if that's where we're headed next year. Blue was also amazing. I was watching a sea of blue on the pool deck from deck 15. We're such a sparkly jamily!