Sail Date: July 2018
I have been on many cruises over the years. The independence was a great ship ruined by corporate greed to introduce hundreds of new cabins at the expense of passenger enjoyment. It is now far far too crowded. Also the teenagers on ... Read More
I have been on many cruises over the years. The independence was a great ship ruined by corporate greed to introduce hundreds of new cabins at the expense of passenger enjoyment. It is now far far too crowded. Also the teenagers on board were not well controlled. They were throwing food around and were rowdy at night even putting plates outside a lift doors to try and trip people up. Bad idea to get rid of the Labyrinth nightclub which now means the disco is in the viking crown lounge which removes another nice public room for people to enjoy a quiet chat. In fact there are no places on board to have a dignified evening without bumping into hundreds of other people and having nowhere to sit. The Royal promenade reminds me of a bustling shopping centre without any where to sit. Far far too busy now. Do not recommend it I am sorry. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
This was my second cruise, we had previously been on one round the Caribbean. We were on the cruise for two weeks and I could not find a single thing to fault. The service was always quick and to a high standard, the staff were all very ... Read More
This was my second cruise, we had previously been on one round the Caribbean. We were on the cruise for two weeks and I could not find a single thing to fault. The service was always quick and to a high standard, the staff were all very polite and attentive. We all loved the cruise director Joff he brought an uplifting feel to the cruise. There was never the chance to get bored with the amount of shows and entertainment provided. Our waiter (Olivia) and assistant waiter (Rommel) took the time to get to know us, this adding a special touch to the cruise. I really enjoyed the idea of waking up in different places. Our cleaner also took time to get to know us always wishing us a good morning, the cleanliness of our room was always to a high standard with towel animals which was a special touch. We really liked having the cruise compass in our room each morning with all the details of the day and what was being offered. It was also an easy way to access opening times for all the facilities. We really enjoyed the formal nights and the opportunity to get dressed up if you wanted to, it was a good excuse to get out our ball gown and suit. However, it’s great that there is an option not to get dressed up if you choose not to. On the last day we had a problem getting of the boat as the bank had blocked my bank card, I was getting very frustrated and impatient and the staff were extremely patient and helpful at this time while also getting a lot of hassle from other customers. Some excursions I didn’t feel were worth the money however, it’s sometimes easier than getting of the ship and organising trips yourself. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
Having read some of the reviews I was a bit nervous about going on Indy but we had a great time. We were a family of 3 with a 4 year old in a balcony cabin. Main comments * Our little one loved splashaway bay. It kept her ... Read More
Having read some of the reviews I was a bit nervous about going on Indy but we had a great time. We were a family of 3 with a 4 year old in a balcony cabin. Main comments * Our little one loved splashaway bay. It kept her entertained for hours. Lifeguards around all the time and swim vests available. * We loved the windjammer. It’s beautiful after the refit. We never struggled to find a table until the last day when a member of staff created a table for us. Food was very good. * Main dining room was good. We didn’t always book but never waited more than 5 mins for a table. Food was good. Not amazing but still good. * We did all the extras and loved the sky pad. It’s worth a try. * Cabin was clean with plenty of storage. Hasn’t been refitted yet but we didn’t feel as if that was an issue. * The bars in the promenade are unattractive and there isn’t enough seating. We used to go up to the bar on floor 14. Always seats there before 9.30. Also star lounge was quiet if nothing was going on in there. * We didn’t feel that we queued any more than we have done on other cruises. Sometimes we were lucky sometimes unlicky. In Ajaccio there was a queue to get back on the boat so we walked around a bit more and came back to no queue. Overall wr had an amazing cruise. The staff were great. The refit makes the ship look good. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We have cruised on Independence of the Seas on a number of occasions and are Diamond level members of the Crown and Anchor Society loyalty programme. Previously we have always been satisfied with the experience but this cruise was very ... Read More
We have cruised on Independence of the Seas on a number of occasions and are Diamond level members of the Crown and Anchor Society loyalty programme. Previously we have always been satisfied with the experience but this cruise was very disappointing. The ship has just had a major refit and we have seen it described as “enhancing the family activity”. To us the result was most unsatisfactory. It was quite clear that RCCL has acted to increase revenue stream by increasing passenger capacity without being able to increase the basic passenger facilities. The ship was therefore very overcrowded and uncomfortable. On sea days there was a considerable shortage of sun loungers with passengers spending long periods of time trying to find somewhere to sit. Heard a rumour that RCCL were considering adopting a policy whereby they require that two passengers should share each lounger. ( not sure whether this would be at the same time, or in shifts). The lounge space for Diamond and Diamond plus members of the loyalty club has been reduced by more than 50% and now consists of one very crowded area containing 55 seats. As there were said to be more than 750 Diamond level members on board it was not possible to use the lounge without extreme discomfort. Less than 30% of the passengers paid any heed to the concept of "Formal Night". It is well past the time when RCCL should either require passengers to stick by the rules or they should abandon the concept of formal night. As yet, the staff on board are maintaining a high level of service under extreme difficulty. It is however clear that they realise that they are being dragged down by the deteriorating circumstances on board. It can only be a matter of time before they break. We have been on this ship a number of times before but there is little chance that we will repeat the experience again. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
Just got off the Indy today from a 14 night Med cruise. This was our 3rd Indy cruise. We've done 20+ Royal Caribbean cruises, but the writing for us is on the wall. In the recent refit the ship has been seriously kiddified. ... Read More
Just got off the Indy today from a 14 night Med cruise. This was our 3rd Indy cruise. We've done 20+ Royal Caribbean cruises, but the writing for us is on the wall. In the recent refit the ship has been seriously kiddified. Waterslides, virtual reality trampolines and climbing frames have been added. The gym reduced in size and the deck 12 walkway around the front of the ship removed to add cabins. The deck 4 and 3 labyrinth disco has gone making way for Izumi and inside cabins. The chapel is now an escape room. In all 120+ cabins added with public areas reduced. On some evenings there wasn't a single seat in any public area to be had. If you are loyal to Royal, the concierge lounge is gone, with D and D+ trying to cram into the old D lounge. The old concierge lounge is now exclusive for top suite and Pinnacle guests. On the plus side Mihee Heo, the D concierge is delightful. The food quality and menus have improved dramatically and, without fail, the staff were superb. If you are travelling with children or teenagers, the Indy will fit the bill. However, for us, it's time to move on as every refit brings similar results. I would not sail on the Indy again. However I'm sure that many will love it. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We choose this cruise having had a great time in 2016; however we were really disappointed.The ship has had a refit with the inclusion of new cabins which have had a detrimental impact on the service, the ambiance and the experience. The ... Read More
We choose this cruise having had a great time in 2016; however we were really disappointed.The ship has had a refit with the inclusion of new cabins which have had a detrimental impact on the service, the ambiance and the experience. The cabin was good, clean and as before. The cabin boy Hugh was a star. We chose anytime dining and ate early 6.15 each evening. The service was good however the food was a little hit and miss. We ate breakfast in there occasionally but gave up after queuing for 15 mins ! We did Windjammer for breakfast it was busy and a little hectic at times, the food here was great and so was the choice. The entertainment was the same as 2 years ago. The team were enthusiastic and Joff was his usual brilliant self. The headliner shows were poor apart from 3; which was a shame. There was absolutely nowhere and I mean nowhere to sit after the shows. We were wandering from one place to another looking for seats! No one wants to sit in their cabin when you’re on holiday. The Star lounge bar was on one occasion not open after dinner, the room was full of guests waiting to be served. The bar service here was slow, the waiters were great though really hardworking especially Marvin. Vintages was the same however again no seats to be had until 11.30ish Alexandra was lovely, super efficient and welcoming The ports were good but again getting on and off was a nightmare, queuing was the norm. We travelled with family who have cruised with RC more than 30 times and they were of the same opinion. We had booked for next year but are in the process of cancelling we will not be sailing on the Independence again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
My 75th birthday treat and Bucket List "Go on a BIG SHIP". 4,128 passengers, 1,600 sunbeds. Overcrowded by about 1,000 passengers too many. Queues everywhere. Despite valiant staff service at bars is appalling that's if you can ... Read More
My 75th birthday treat and Bucket List "Go on a BIG SHIP". 4,128 passengers, 1,600 sunbeds. Overcrowded by about 1,000 passengers too many. Queues everywhere. Despite valiant staff service at bars is appalling that's if you can get a seat. On non sun days there is an acute shortage of seats. Hence the high amount of scooters as this is the only way to guarantee a seat. The food in the MDR is mediocre as RCI want you in the premium restaurants. At meal times the MDR is less than half full as all are in Windjammer which is spacious and the food is quite good plus you can have as much as you like. The ship is beautiful and well appointed with good shows in the theatre. But the queues and lack of seating spoil everything. Plus the paying system at the bars takes longer than getting your drink. Cabin 1686 was lovely and well looked after by an attentive steward. In future will stick to a smaller ship. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We booked this cruise after a great experience last year on Navigator - unfortunately, whilst not awful, this holiday failed to meet expectations. Boarding was painless, and the cabin, 7408 was at the stern and had a really spacious ... Read More
We booked this cruise after a great experience last year on Navigator - unfortunately, whilst not awful, this holiday failed to meet expectations. Boarding was painless, and the cabin, 7408 was at the stern and had a really spacious balcony. However, the overall feeling throughout the two weeks was one of being in an overcrowded environment - I understand the the recent refurbishment has added a significant number of staterooms. As a result, we frequently struggled to find seating in the Windjammer, both at breakfast and lunch, and the announcements asking us to leave after eating were annoying in the extreme. After paying what we paid, if I want to sit for a while after my meal, then I will! Food in the Windjammer was on a par with a factory canteen, and whilst there was a wide selection, it was all pretty poor. Evening meals in the dining room were excellent, and the service great. Overall the service was not great - I got the impression that the staff were really overstretched, and tired people can be offhand. The entertainment was pretty poor - that's just my opinion, but it is a fact that the shows were overcrowded. People were waiting to get into Grease over 90 minutes before the show, so we didn't see it. Every night, the seats were full well before the shows, and people had to stand in order to see them. Overall, I got the impression of a greedy company, more interested in squeezing maximum profit than providing a great experience. We won't be going on this ship again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We chose this cruise as we are big fans of this ship and wanted to see the outcome of the refit. Our embarkation was very smooth and we were on the ship within about 20 mins. Our cabin, a Grand Suite was lovely and our suite attendant ... Read More
We chose this cruise as we are big fans of this ship and wanted to see the outcome of the refit. Our embarkation was very smooth and we were on the ship within about 20 mins. Our cabin, a Grand Suite was lovely and our suite attendant Johann was great, looking after us brilliantly. We choose my time dining, although we booked it for 8.30 pm every evening we attended. We asked for the same table by the window each evening, and were able to get it on all occasions. The food was not as good as in previous years, very American orientated. The service was mostly good, but very quick, not always a brilliant experience, so we ate in WJ around 50% of the time, the food there is always great and very varied. Junior, the suite concierge was very attentive without being invasive, and the Suite Lounge on the 14 floor was lovely, the service was great. We love The Oliver and Twist bar, and the staff as usual were very attentive. We went there once or twice, most evenings, Ronald Reagan, was exceptionally good, a lovely, friendly, efficient gentleman. The entertainment was the same as it has been on every occasion we have been on the ship, so we did not attend many of the shows again, the same with the ice skating, it was the same shows so we did not attend, although reports from fellow passengers were good. It was great having reserved seating by the pool for suite guests, it made such a difference on sea days, a nice little touch by RCI. The ports, included a lot of our favourite places, which is another reason we choose this cruise. We did not do any shore excursions during this trip. Disembarkation, was brilliant. We had a lovely breakfast in Chops Grill and then got straight of the ship. Would we go again?———— yes we would! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
I though I’d add here of my experience of my recent cruise onboard the new renovated Independence of the Seas between the 2-16th June. I’ll start off by saying it was the sixth cruise with RCI, once onboard the Voyager and the ... Read More
I though I’d add here of my experience of my recent cruise onboard the new renovated Independence of the Seas between the 2-16th June. I’ll start off by saying it was the sixth cruise with RCI, once onboard the Voyager and the fifth on the Indy. Each time I’ve been I’d recommend RCI to everyone, but not anymore the Independence I’m afraid, the refurbishment with the additional rooms which brings another 500 passengers onboard to 4150 is just too much. So many places were overcrowded, most people are aware what mayhem the Windjammer is at peak times, but the whole ship seemed like that this cruise. One problem is the main dining rooms, with the additional tables added it’s difficult to manoeuvre between the chairs and tables, something a lot of waiting staff were telling passengers. The usual problem with sun beds was just made more problematic on sunny days, and on a day at sea when it was windy and overcast (sailing between Madeira and La Coruña) with everyone being inside queuing for a speciality coffee took 40 minutes. We also found the main dining room experience slightly tarnished as the wait between courses was some days up to 30 mins, I don’t think the waiters can deal with the additional tables when it’s full. One place we never see anywhere near busy was Fish n Ships, infact I only saw a few people eating there. I can’t see that staying to be honest, when you take into account how much a simple fish and chip dinner costs. Additional problems on board we encountered were a galley brunch we had ordered before cruising on the last day was changed to two days earlier, not a problem you’d think. Trouble being our stateroom attendant put the notification in our room the evening AFTER the event. A refund was issued and a complimentary Chops Grille was given, but we’d missed the brunch which we had done before on previous cruises and enjoyed. The last problem onboard I found was our main dining room waiter, a week into the cruise he mentioned the guest satisfaction survey we’d receive after our cruise and how vital it was to him that we scored him well. Now, I don’t mind him telling us that once, but that evening he spent each course asking if he’d score a 10 from us which slightly annoyed me. The following evening and the one thereafter was the same, with him even telling my daughter to make sure we give him a 10 score, that was enough for me and we only dined again there on the last formal night, he really did sour the whole evening experiences for us. I will add the other waiter was an absolute pleasure to know, polite, funny and a credit to RCI. Now on to the plus points. The new additions, the water slides, laser tag and skypad are superb. Great fun for us all and really do add to the cruise, we spent many hours enjoying these activities. The escape room was also a great hour spent, I’d never done one before and really enjoyed it and got to make some new friends while playing it. Managed to escape with 9 minutes left. We also dined at Izumi, and what a superb night that was. Atmosphere, food and the whole experience was one of the best, chef Elvis was a pleasure to meet, definitely worth the additional cost for the meal. We also tried Johnny Rockets, a good time with some nice food, although the additional cost doesn’t seem warranted in my opinion. The tours we did with RCI were handles well and ran very well as usual, booked four but one trip was cancelled which was disappointing, other days at port we did our thing which we find more enjoyable. If you ever go to Madeira go on a catamaran dolphin and whale watching, a three trip and a reasonable price and a fantastic experience seeing turtles, whales and dolphins up close. It was the highlight of the cruise, as was Lanzarote, albeit an exhausting one, hired bicycles just outside the port and followed the path 8 miles to the next town. Beautiful weather and scenery, and stopped for a lovely lunch by the beach and tried out the jet skis, another great experience. Overall we had a great holiday again with RCI, but it’s the first time I've finished a cruise and not wanted to go back immediately, certainly not on the Independence. I’ll have to overcome my fear of flying and cruise on another ship, or consider the Navigator which sails from Southampton, I’d love to see Norway some time. I’ve waffled on far too long now, so if you’ve got this far thank you for reading. Take care and happy cruising to you all. Read Less
Independence of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 3.0 3.8
Entertainment 5.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.2
Family 5.0 4.2
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates N/A 3.8

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