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Kelly04

Symphony of the Seas Western Caribbean Review 8/3/2019

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Thank you for your feedback and photos

 

I am happy to see your lovely photos of Paradise Beach in Cozumel, Mexico- as I have booked it with trip advisor for this October.

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30 minutes ago, Tess2326 said:

Thank you for your feedback and photos

 

I am happy to see your lovely photos of Paradise Beach in Cozumel, Mexico- as I have booked it with trip advisor for this October.

FYI. We always do Paradise Beach Club on our own. I don’t know what you are paying through Trip Advisor but here’s a break down of doing it on our own . . .

$15 taxi each way (up to 6 in the taxi)

$3.00 per person entrance fee

they ask each person spend $10 on food/drinks. 

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9 minutes ago, island284 said:

FYI. We always do Paradise Beach Club on our own. I don’t know what you are paying through Trip Advisor but here’s a break down of doing it on our own . . .

$15 taxi each way (up to 6 in the taxi)

$3.00 per person entrance fee

they ask each person spend $10 on food/drinks. 

We paid all inclusive pass day apart from taxi 

Edited by Tess2326

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On 8/17/2019 at 7:48 PM, Kelly04 said:

Ports:
Roatan, Honduras- We booked a private tour through Victor Bodden. Although his company gets rave reviews, we would probably not book them again. Directions to his kiosk were easy enough and we met Kenny, our driver for the day. He seemed nice enough and took us to the sloth place for "priority hugs". The place itself was great (I think the monkeys were even more fun than the sloths) and cost an additional $5 per person in addition to the $25 each we paid for the van for the day. So, this when the day took a bad turn. At the end of the sloth tour when it came time to tip our animal tour guide my husband and I only had very large bills left, and apparently whoever left the tip for our family left a very low one (more on this later). We said we wanted to go to a beach club and Kenny took us to Paradise Beach hotel. There was a $20 charge for the beach club. The beach is nice, but the vendors are out of control and it is not relaxing at all. They do have some security guards on the beach that look like they mean business. We decided to move to the pool which was very relaxing and nice. We checked out the restaurant, but it was pretty expensive. We originally told Kenny we would stay til 1:30, and it was our understanding that he was our driver for the day and would stay (we did not leave anything in the van though). So it becomes 12:45 and we are all starving so we decide to look for Kenny. No one has seen him- no problem- maybe he left for a bit. It gets very close to 1:30 and no one can find him. Shortly after 1:30 another Victor Bodden employee shows up and says "Kenny isn't going to make it, I'll take you back". What I am unclear of is whether anyone from Victor Bodden would have come to get us, if we didn't have another one of their employees call around for Kenny. I have a feeling that Kenny talked to the sloth place guy and saw how low we tipped, and bailed on us. Which sucks, but I guess is sort of our fault. We all felt really embarrassed, but also pretty frustrated with the whole thing.
 

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Hi Kelly, Can you tell me which Port The symphony docks at in Honduras, is it Mahogany Bay or Roatan Coxen Hole. Thank you

 

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On 8/19/2019 at 5:25 PM, charmy98 said:

Hi Kelly, Can you tell me which Port The symphony docks at in Honduras, is it Mahogany Bay or Roatan Coxen Hole. Thank you

 

RCCL docks at Coxen Hole.  

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We were on the same sailing!  I completely forgot about the delayed departure.  Funny how little details slip your mind.

 

We were at the same comedy show 😞   

 

 

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On 8/17/2019 at 8:40 PM, Kelly04 said:

Disembarkation: We walked off with our luggage right at 8. Seriously took 5 minutes. No showing passports for U.S. passport holders-its all facial recognition. Getting an Uber was stressful as it is so crowded, but we managed.

 

We have never taken Uber.  Do you think it would be better just to take a taxi?  We are flying out of FLL.  I know the taxi is expensive (just took one in April but it was 4 of us, this time it will only be the 2 of us.)  Thanks.

 

Edited by destiny217

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52 minutes ago, destiny217 said:

Do you think it would be better just to take a taxi?  We are flying out of FLL.

 

The distance between PE and FLL is so short that the Uber discount is fairly small. 

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2 hours ago, destiny217 said:

 

We have never taken Uber.  Do you think it would be better just to take a taxi?  We are flying out of FLL.  I know the taxi is expensive (just took one in April but it was 4 of us, this time it will only be the 2 of us.)  Thanks.

 

I think that the Uber from Miami to FLL was around $38.  An uber XL was around $75.  I am not sure how that would compare to a taxi.  

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27 minutes ago, Kelly04 said:

I think that the Uber from Miami to FLL was around $38.  An uber XL was around $75.  I am not sure how that would compare to a taxi.  

Thanks.  Did you notice if taxi cabs were plentiful or had a long line?  Thanks again.

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13 hours ago, destiny217 said:

Thanks.  Did you notice if taxi cabs were plentiful or had a long line?  Thanks again.

 

When we got off symphony (same day as the OP) - it was mass chaos outside of the terminal and very poorly mangaged by port staff.  We could not even wade through crowds to find the uber pickup area.  We found the taxi line and went for it.  The line was huge - and we stood for an hour in the line, while others bypassed the line altogether and taking cabs from the end of the line.  it was tempting to do the same ,but we were not in a rush, stood the line, and waited one full hour in that line.  

 

Moral of the story, is beat the rush and get off the ship early.  We started trying to get off the ship at 9, had a huge wait for an elevator and were outside the terminal at 9:30.

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58 minutes ago, Queen of Oakville said:

 

When we got off symphony (same day as the OP) - it was mass chaos outside of the terminal and very poorly mangaged by port staff.  We could not even wade through crowds to find the uber pickup area.  We found the taxi line and went for it.  The line was huge - and we stood for an hour in the line, while others bypassed the line altogether and taking cabs from the end of the line.  it was tempting to do the same ,but we were not in a rush, stood the line, and waited one full hour in that line.  

 

Moral of the story, is beat the rush and get off the ship early.  We started trying to get off the ship at 9, had a huge wait for an elevator and were outside the terminal at 9:30.

Many thanks.

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On 8/17/2019 at 8:40 PM, Kelly04 said:

Disembarkation: We walked off with our luggage right at 8. Seriously took 5 minutes. No showing passports for U.S. passport holders-its all facial recognition. Getting an Uber was stressful as it is so crowded, but we managed.

 

Thanks for following along with my review! Again, feel free to ask any questions and I will try to answer them.  

I also have compasses from every day that I can scan and e-mail them if anyone is interested.  


 

Thinking of doing early walk off. Cabin is in the same area on deck 8 fdw. Would you no what time the MDR opens for breakfast for embarkation, and which deck? Also would you advise us to leave the luggage in the cabin and go to MDR or take with us to MDR. Thanks in advance.

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50 minutes ago, shakeNbake said:

Thinking of doing early walk off. Cabin is in the same area on deck 8 fdw. Would you no what time the MDR opens for breakfast for embarkation, and which deck? Also would you advise us to leave the luggage in the cabin and go to MDR or take with us to MDR. Thanks in advance.

 

If you want to be quick, take your bags with you to the MDR.  The elevators can be painfully slow and are often filled to capacity on disembarkation day.

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On 8/28/2019 at 10:15 PM, destiny217 said:

Thanks.  Did you notice if taxi cabs were plentiful or had a long line?  Thanks again.

$75 plus tip was about the cost of the taxi.

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On 8/16/2019 at 10:20 PM, Kelly04 said:

Food- We ate in the main dining room each night. Anderson and Lucy were our waiters. Props to Kamlesh (beverage waiter), who made sure we always had a drink. On the Oasis last year, it was nearly impossible to get a drink during dinner so we had to go the casino bar and get them ourselves. Service was a bit hit or miss as some nights were very slow and others were pretty fast. It seemed to depend on if the large table next to us was there or not. The head waiter Angelica was really great with our nephew who has food allergies and made sure he was taken care of each night. Food was good for the most part (I am not picky). Almost all of the chocolate desserts (hazelnut chocolate cake, molten lava cake, warm chocolate cookie) were AMAZING!  

As for breakfast and lunches, we ate at the Solarium Bistro or the Park Cafe for breakfast and lunch. (Love the roast beef!).  We tried Johnny Rockets for breakfast one day and also tried El Loco Fresh for lunch.  We thought El Loco Fresh was pretty tasty, but it is very easy to over-eat there. You should see some of the plates people make! El Loco Fresh also surprisingly had some of the best desserts! Late night we tried out Sorrentos and the Promenade Cafe a few times. Sorrentos pizza always hits the spot and I think its improved in quality in the last few years.  

Activities- I saw this in a previous review and I will have to agree- I feel like Symphony had less activities scheduled in general than the Oasis or other ships we have been on. I think perhaps they rely more on the ship itself (zip line, flow-rider, water slides, etc). Would have liked to see more, but we were never really bored. I did miss the movies in the Aquatheater- I feel like they rarely did this on the Symphony.  We did the Escape Room (pre-purchased) and completed it in about 48 minutes I think. It was fun and worth the $20 we paid. Other than that, we just did the water slides a few times. We did try to make it a few things in On Air like Trivia or Finish that Lyric, but a lot of the times bingo tickets were being sold outside and everyone who bought a ticket seemed to stay for trivia. It made it really hard to participate in these activities unless you got there super early because they were so crowded. Our nephews enjoyed the flow-rider, zipline and the Ultimate Abyss. The younger one seemed to enjoy Adventure Ocean more than the older, but as the cruise went on both were fine going. My sister in law felt like they tended to make the "fun" activities after 10pm when parents have to pay $7 per hour. Smart on their part. 80's Parade is shown below as well as the results of our escape room. (Excuse my husband's face- he was being silly)

  

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Can u purchase the wave pool only

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On 9/2/2019 at 7:13 AM, janetz said:

Great review 😎

Can you tell me which nights are formal nights?

Day 2 and Day 6

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On 9/2/2019 at 2:20 PM, Tomnsgirl said:

Can u purchase the wave pool only

On Coco Cay?  No, you it is included with the Thrill water park ticket.  

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I have been in Oasis twice, once in Allure and once in Harmony. There is nothing like a new ship feel for Symphony.. looking forward to April 2020.

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Was Symphony the only ship in port at Coco Cay when you went?  I'm looking at an itinerary next summer and Independence is in port the same day and I'm thinking that will be waaaay too crowded with both of them there.  Thanks!

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On 8/17/2019 at 7:57 PM, Kelly04 said:

Cozumel, Mexico- Since we had the drink package, we decided to avoid all inclusive places like Mr. Sanchos. We originally thought the kiddos were coming with us, so we chose Paradise Beach for the inflatables. The kids and their parents did something else, but we still went. Paradise Beach is beautiful. The pool is amazing and heated- food and drinks are reasonable. You pay $3 to get in and get a chair, then you are supposed to spend $10 on food and drink per person. We also purchased the $18 fun pass which lets you use the inflatables, snorkeling gear, mats, kayaks, paddle boards. We had a lot of fun on the inflatables. We went early and again had the place to ourselves, but by 11 it started to get really crowded. We had a great day there and would definitely go back the next time we are in Cozumel.

We love Paradise Beach, only place we go to in Cozumel.

Edited by karena1

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