Written on: 16/05/2008 by VicR (1 review written)
Tour guide was very good and really knew his stuff
Pushy staff that just wanted your money
The boat was very nice, clean and we had a huge cabin on the lower deck. The sun deck was really nice with 2 large undercover sitting areas and plenty of sundecks (undercover and in the sun). The food was plentiful and enough courses if you didn't like something. We could not fault the boat and standard at all and I think it was one of the best boats. It made it more peaceful with just 20 cabins and a smaller amount of people and this was definitely a plus when it came to the tours.
There were a few negatives though. We found it hard to change money into small notes but there wasn't a problem doing this when we advised we would not buy something unless we were able to get change.
I ordered glasses of wine for a few nights and the measures were getting less and less and I only received half a glass on a few occasions. I then bought a bottle and kept this in the fridge in the cabin, and this rectified the problem.
As it was full board on the boat you had to sign for drinks and it wasn't always straight after you ordered it. If you even paused to look at the bill the staff would become aggressive and demand you sign it. Make sure you keep a record of what you have bought. When checking out they tried to overcharge us and weren't too happy when my husband made them go through all the bills and it turns out we were right.
The Galabaya ball was a really good laugh but there was a lot of pressure to buy costumes. As there is not much time to buy one off the boat we had to pay £32 for 2 costumes. Mine was really expensive as I am very small and we had left to late to get it taken up. We did haggle him down in price but we were sworn to secrecy as we had paid less than other guests. The photographer on this night hounded us to death to pose for photos and in the end gave in. Then we were hounded to buy the photos that were not very good quality and we didn't buy (which they did not like).
The evening entertainment for the other nights was ok, nothing brilliant and I found that you couldn't relax because you were constantly dragged up to be part of it. If you like Pontins you will like this.
There was also a man videoing the evenings which was fine but at one point he was on the top deck filming us as we were relaxing, which is out of order, and wouldn't have been too happy if I had been in my bikini. Then there was a video evening when you could purchase the DVD but we did not go. The 6 guests that did go felt obliged to buy one at £15.
If I had read these points I don't think it would have put me off going but I would have been more prepared. Their perception of you is that you are rich and make if obvious they want your money and not as friendly if they don't get it.
We did a twin centre to the Sheriton Soma Bay and the contrast in attitudes was unbelievable and did not make it obvious they wanted your money. It was a different world. They were very grateful for any tips. Maybe this is because it is an International chain hotel and not a local company.
The tour guide was very good and he was worth a big tip at the end. I don't mind tipping at all, as we do in England, but I just felt that they have become greedy on the Terramar.
I did still really enjoy the trip and what we saw, the tour guide and the standard of the boat outweighed the negatives. But if you are aware of these things then they can maybe be avoided. (like buying a bottle of wine, instead of a glass).