Last Updated: 28-MAY-2012
This was a 12 day Caribbean cruise with Royal Caribbean - MS Enchantment of the Seas departing from Baltimore on 05 December. We booked this cruise with Vacations-to-go on the web in late October after a cancelation freed up a room in the area of the ship we wanted We paid about $3,000 with no ship credit. This was our ninth cruise and the first time with a balcony. We arrived at the ship at 10:45 and after paying $180 to park we ended up getting a space that was only 10 or so from the terminal building. I am not a fan of Baltimore or Maryland but they really have this figured out. We went thru security quickly with no issues (Did not bring on any wine or banned electrical items like a fan this time) After check in and security we had to wait thirty minutes or so because people were still getting off of the ship. We ended up getting on around 12. We headed to the Windjammer food area forward deck 9 and got our first lunch. It was crowded as it usually is the first day but had no issues. Right away we could tell we were on a lower end cruise food wise. But, we knew that coming into to this. We got to our room around 1:30 and we were surprised that our luggage was already at the room. So far we are impressed. First time we got a balcony. Also, this made the room wider.
SHIP LAYOUT: This was the largest ship we've been on 2446 passengers and it was full (room wise). The ship showed its age and was in ok condition and we did see some broken doors and ice machines that were broken. Our balcony cabin was on 7th deck and the room had a fridge and a safe with a keyboard. Also, our bathroom had a shower Curtin that I had seen some complaints written about it. We had no issues with the room. It was clean, had good storage and our room steward was nice. As usual the people stayed around the pool on Deck 09. I would sit on Deck 10, which also had plenty of chairs and area you could stay out of the wind depending on the ship / wind direction. I never had any issue finding a free place to sit. RCI like other cruises would tie up the chairs but it was easy to untie and they did not ever say anything to me for doing that. The front and rear area of Deck 10 was a good place to look at the stars as it was the darkest place on the ship. The layout was less exterior than other ships. But, having 2,400 people on the ship it never seemed that crowded.
This ship under went a interesting expansion back in 2008.
In 2005, the Enchantment of the Seas was overhauled. Part of overhaul included stretching the vessel by cutting it in two amidship and adding a 73-foot (22 m) long section. Enchantment entered dry dock at Keppel Verolme shipyards in Rotterdam on 15 May 2005. The mid-body extension section was built at Aker Finnyards ahead of time, allowing the construction to be done in just over a month. The ship resumed service on July 7, 2005, less than two months after entering dry dock. The new section included 151 new staterooms, outdoor trampoline bungees, suspension bridges, an expanded pool area, a 64-jet interactive fountain area for kids, and floor windows allowing an unobstructed view of the ocean below. During its time out of service, Enchantment also received an overall renovation, which included paintings by Paul Critchley for the Windjammer cafe When the extension project was approved, an extension of Enchantment's sister ship, Grandeur of the Seas was also planned, with tentative plans to extend other ships in the Vision class (and possibly throughout the fleet). However, while the Enchantment project was successful, it proved to be prohibitively expensive, and all future extension projects have been cancelled
RCI ALCOHOL POLICY: They did not allow any BEER / WINE / HARD STUFF to be brought on. But, as with most security bozos it’s easy to get around that. In fact at St. Thomas I was able to walk on with 7 liter bottles of marked booze on and they did not notice. Also, if you buy the plastic bottles with a plastic cap and keep it on your person you can just walk on thru the metal detector. I will NOT pay the inflated drink prices and have yet to buy a single mixed drink in 9 cruises. Soda was not an issue as we brought some on board at most ports.
DRESS: We had two or three formal nights. I did NOT dress up and it did not seem to be enforced. I saw a many with no ties and no jackets. On the non formal nights I saw a many of people wearing jeans in the main dining room. Again, they did not seem to care which is good as I am on vacation.
CASINO: Did not spend a cent. Was not going to give them anything extra this cruise.
INTERNET: Because of pets at home we paid for one of the internet plans. Figuring on how much time that I needed was not easy but we went with the 150 minutes for $75 plan. I must say that I was very impressed with the speed. I was checking web cameras and accessing email and the speed was excellent. Some people complained about the ships computers. I brought my laptop and had no issues at all connecting to the web.
SECURITY: As usual a joke. We did not try to bring on a fan this year and we lucked out as the room was nice and cool. The fan would have helped in drying swim related items. The idiots did not find the plug strips / outlet expanders that I had hid across the bags. On the cruise groups I have seen issues with these items being reported.
ARRIVAL / DEPARTURE TIME: No problems at all at any port. Like I said it was easy on. In Baltimore I was expecting issues in getting off the ship and it was easy. They did not even look at our passport and NO questions were asked. Our carry on bags we not screened for anything I assume our checked bags were checked by dogs but did not appear to be x-rayed. Again, very easy and we were in our car on 95 within 20 minutes of leaving the room. The liquor rules did not appear to be enforced. Very good when you are bringing back a year's worth to defer taxes ! Excellent !
FOOD: Lowest quality of any cruise we have been on. But, we expected it. The layout of the Windjammer food area made no sense and it caused some issues. Also, they kept trying to close off sections of seats to keep people in one area probably due to staff shortages. Generally people would just push by and sit where they wanted. I would move the chairs that they used to block it off and watch as it filled up again. What a joke. The food was ok. And for most of the people that have never gone on a better cruise line, they would have probably not noticed.
DEMOGRAPHICS: Interesting…. Still an older crowd and probably the most kids we have had on a cruise (were told 50 kids were on the ship) but did not see them much which is good.
All photos were taken with a Cannon PowerShot S90 10MP camera. Any Video was shot with a Cannon PowerShot S90 camera and converted to AVI with AWS Video Converter 6 St. Maarten video was taken with a Sony DCR-HC32 Handycam and converted with Microsoft Movie Maker software
Day 01 - Dec 05, 2011 MON Baltimore - Maryland --- 04:00 pm Day 02 - Dec 06, 2011 TUE At Sea --- --- Day 03 - Dec 07, 2011 WED At Sea --- --- Day 04 - Dec 08, 2011 THU Labadee, Haiti 8:00 am 04:00 pm Day 05 - Dec 09, 2011 FRI San Juan, PR. 2:00 pm 10:00 pm Day 06 - Dec 10, 2011 SAT Charlotte Amalie - St. Thomas 8:00 am 05:00 pm Day 07 - Dec 11, 2011 SUN Philipsburg - St. Maarten 8:00 am 05:00 pm Day 08 - Dec 12, 2011 MON St. Johns - Antigua 8:00 am 05:00 pm Day 09 - Dec 13, 2011 TUE Road Town, Tortola, BVI 8:00 am 04:00 pm Day 10 - Dec 14, 2011 WED At Sea --- --- Day 11 - Dec 15, 2011 THU At Sea --- --- Day 12 - Dec 16, 2011 FRI At Sea --- --- Day 13 - Dec 17, 2011 SAT Baltimore - Maryland 7:00 a.m. ---
Total mileage on this voyage (Estimated from google earth as RCI did not give a navigation report on the last day) Ports Mileage Baltimore to Labadee, Haiti 1,360 nm Labadee, Haiti to San Juan, PR 367 nm San Juan, PR to Charlotte Amalie - St. Thomas 76 nm Charlotte Amalie - St. Thomas to Philipsburg - St. Maarten 110 nm Philipsburg - St. Maarten to St. John's Antigua 92 nm St. John's Antigua to Road Harbour, Tortola 182 nm Road Harbour, Tortola to Baltimore, MD 1,424 nm TOTAL 3,611 nm 3,611 nm = 4,155 land miles = 6,686 Kilometers
RCI Enchantment of the Seas - Ship Facts Occupancy: 2,446 Tonnage: 80,700 Length: 990 feet Beam: 106 ft Draught: 25 Cruisespeed: 22 knots Inaugural Date: Jul 13, 1997 Name: Enchantment of the Seas Registry: Norway Builder: Kvaerner Masa-Yards Country Built In: Finland Ship Completed Date: 7/13/1997 Christened By: Colleen Fain Call Letters: C6FZ7 Refurbished Date: 4/1/2005 Capacity: 2446 Number of Crew, Nationality: 873, International Gross Tonnage: 82910 Stabilized: Yes Average Speed: 22 knots Maximum Speed: 22 knots Length: 990 feet Beam: 106 feet Space Ratio: 37.9:1 Number of Passenger Decks: 10 Number of Inside Rooms: 463 Number of Outside Rooms: 663 Number of Restaurants: 4 Number of Pools: 3 Number of Elevators: 3 Voltage: 110/220 Non-Smoking Dining: Yes Non-Smoking Ship: No
DAILY SHIP GUIDES / MAPS / OTHER INFO
DAY 01 - BALTIMORE, USA
DAY 02 - AT SEA
DAY 03 - AT SEA
DAY 04 - LABADEE, HAITI
DAY 05 - San Juan, PR.
DAY 06 - Charlotte Amalie - St. Thomas
DAY 07 - Philipsburg - St. Maarten
DAY 08 - St. Johns - Antigua
DAY 09 - Road Town, Tortola, BVI
DAY 10 - AT SEA
DAY 11 - AT SEA
DAY 12 - AT SEA
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