Re port shuttles from Jewel of the Seas

This item appears on page 27 of the April 2012 issue.
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A friend and I had single cabins on Royal Caribbean International’s Jewel of the Seas for the “12-Night Scandinavia and Russia Cruise” round trip from Harwich, England, to Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Russia and Estonia, May 18-30, 2011.

Jewel of the Seas is a beautiful ship. The staff was wonderful, and everyone connected with passenger service was outstanding, but there are a couple of things I would point out.

Royal Caribbean’s shuttle bus service from each port into the town center was provided at $6 each way, and the ship’s activities paper stated that no bus service came to the pier.

In Copenhagen and Stockholm, the ship’s shuttle took you only to the center of town, period — one dropoff and boarding place. Once in town, if you wanted to stop at all the tourist points of interest, you looked for the hop-on/hop-off bus.

In both of these cities, however, the hop-on/hop-off buses stopped directly on the pier, so there was no point in paying an extra $12 to use the shuttle from the ship. Another bus would be along in 15 to 20 minutes.

Each hop-on bus charged about $40 and took credit cards if you hadn’t exchanged local currency. Playing taped commentary in English, every bus made a circuit through the city, passing the ship once each round trip. There were both open-air seats on top and inside seats on the driver’s level.

We learned this too late in Copenhagen, but in Stockholm we took the hop-on bus at the pier, hopped off at the Vasa Museum for a tour, met a Swedish friend and continued with her on the bus around her city, then took the bus back to the pier. Very convenient!

Also, I was disappointed that, on Jewel of the Seas, special coffees at dinner and fresh-squeezed orange juice at breakfast cost extra. These were provided gratis on Holland America Line’s Statendam when I cruised through the Panama Canal, Jan. 21-Feb. 4, 2011, and on Princess Cruises’ Coral Princess, Nov. 14-25, 2010, in the Western Caribbean.

Small things cause a person to consider another line for future cruises. Prices are similar and the same cruise destinations are visited in all parts of the world.

MARGARET HAMMOND
Spring Hill, FL

ITN sent a copy of Ms. Hammond’s letter to Royal Caribbean International (1050 Caribbean Way, Miami, FL 33132) and received no reply.

Please login or subscribe to ITN to read the entire post.

A friend and I had single cabins on Royal Caribbean International’s Jewel of the Seas for the “12-Night Scandinavia and Russia Cruise” round trip from Harwich, England, to Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Russia and Estonia, May 18-30, 2011.

Jewel of the Seas is a beautiful ship. The staff was wonderful, and everyone connected with passenger service was outstanding, but there are a couple of things I would point out.

Royal Caribbean’s shuttle bus service from each port into the town center was provided at $6 each way, and the ship’s activities paper stated that no bus service came to the pier.

In Copenhagen and Stockholm, the ship’s shuttle took you only to the center of town, period — one dropoff and boarding place. Once in town, if you wanted to stop at all the tourist points of interest, you looked for the hop-on/hop-off bus.

In both of these cities, however, the hop-on/hop-off buses stopped directly on the pier, so there was no point in paying an extra $12 to use the shuttle from the ship. Another bus would be along in 15 to 20 minutes.

Each hop-on bus charged about $40 and took credit cards if you hadn’t exchanged local currency. Playing taped commentary in English, every bus made a circuit through the city, passing the ship once each round trip. There were both open-air seats on top and inside seats on the driver’s level.

We learned this too late in Copenhagen, but in Stockholm we took the hop-on bus at the pier, hopped off at the Vasa Museum for a tour, met a Swedish friend and continued with her on the bus around her city, then took the bus back to the pier. Very convenient!

Also, I was disappointed that, on Jewel of the Seas, special coffees at dinner and fresh-squeezed orange juice at breakfast cost extra. These were provided gratis on Holland America Line’s Statendam when I cruised through the Panama Canal, Jan. 21-Feb. 4, 2011, and on Princess Cruises’ Coral Princess, Nov. 14-25, 2010, in the Western Caribbean.

Small things cause a person to consider another line for future cruises. Prices are similar and the same cruise destinations are visited in all parts of the world.

MARGARET HAMMOND
Spring Hill, FL

ITN sent a copy of Ms. Hammond’s letter to Royal Caribbean International (1050 Caribbean Way, Miami, FL 33132) and received no reply.