Q: How can I get a fair evaluation on a cruise line?
–Robert, Ft. Myers Beach, Fla.
A: Hi, Robert. Cruisecritic.com is a favorite of mine and offers cruise reviews and news on cruises. This Web site provides detailed reviews from its editors on topics such as mealtime, bedtime, what’s new, what’s boring, and more. The site also allows its members to write reviews of their experiences.
Cruisereport.com also offers editor and member reviews, and it averages consumer ratings on a score from zero to 100. The reviewer scorecard rates aspects such as staff, dining, itinerary and ports of call, activities, and more. It also lists the pros and cons, and the editors’ articles offer an in-depth look into their experiences.
If you’re interested in how individual cruise ships are rated based on sanitation, check out the Green Sheet. Produced by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the “Green Sheet” is the Vessel Sanitation Program’s online database of results from each cruise ship’s sanitary inspection, and it’s available for free. You can see how each ship scored on its latest inspection and even find out the specific infractions it might have received.
The report offers a detailed, yet comprehensible look into cruise-ship cleanliness. Satisfactory scores range from 100 to 86 percent; anything below 86 ranks as not satisfactory. In the last 12 months, 21 ships out of nearly 150 received scores of 100, and four ships received unsatisfactory inspections. You also can browse through most U.S. cruise ships or search for an individual vessel.