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Author: dpotter

Joined: 5/6/2010
Posts: 7
Trips Taken: 20
Traveler Since: 1999

October 06, 2010

I just discovered that CruiseCritic now posts reviews of Grand Circle Small Ship cruises, and even includes one OAT Ship (the Athena). I suspect many of us will find these reviews interesting and useful. In addition, if you've recently completed one of these cruises, you can post your own review there.

CruiseCritic has consistently proven an extremely valuable resource. The inclusion of GCT and OAT cruises makes it even more so.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

October 12, 2010

Out of curiosity, I just checked the Cruise Critic website.  You can also access it by going into the Trip Advisor website and clicking on cruises.  They seem to be partners of some kind. 

The general description of GCT was very positive, talking about the history of the company and explaining why it's so popular and why there are so many of us who are repeat travelers.

The only European river ship that had reviews was the River Melody. 

One reviewer (although giving 4 stars) was very negative about everything  -  the cabins (too small), the food (only fair), the drinks (watered), the service (poor), the coffee maker in the lounge (instant), the layout of the lounge (unmanageable for its purpose), etc.  That trip was in June of 2005.  They did have a difficult series of flights getting there, and I think they were prepared to find fault wherever they went.

The other reviewer gave it 5 stars and loved everything.  That was in June of 2007.

For some reason, there were two reviews of the Norwegian Sun, a Norwegian Cruise Line ship.  And that was because both reviewers stated they had made their reservations online through a travel company called Grand Circle Travel or GCT.  Can such a thing be possible?

Author: dpotter

Joined: 5/6/2010
Posts: 7
Trips Taken: 20
Traveler Since: 1999

October 20, 2010

Yes, up through this year it was possible to book NCL and Holland America cruises through GCT, although this is only partially accurate -- GCT was packaging ocean cruises together with air fare and hotel and some land travel at a very competitive rate. Sorry to say that they're no longer doing this, or at least not for 2011... Not sure why they've stopped, and I wish they'd resume!

Author: grammyflo

Joined: 3/15/2010
Posts: 169
Trips Taken: 13
Traveler Since: 2002

October 20, 2010

Grand Circle had a marvelous cruise to Hawaii via NCL (which I love) in 2005.Unfortunately, I got shingles and had to cancel.  They dropped the cruise the following year and I have to assume it was a economic decision. We did take the NCL Pride of Aloha in 2007 for our 50th.  It was lovely but GCT's trip was loaded with extras we did not get in 2007.  I, too, wish they would reconsider their cruises there.

Author: grammyflo

Joined: 3/15/2010
Posts: 169
Trips Taken: 13
Traveler Since: 2002

October 20, 2010

Grand Circle had a marvelous cruise to Hawaii via NCL (which I love) in 2005.Unfortunately, I got shingles and had to cancel.  They dropped the cruise the following year and I have to assume it was a economic decision. We did take the NCL Pride of Aloha in 2007 for our 50th.  It was lovely but GCT's trip was loaded with extras we did not get in 2007.  I, too, wish they would reconsider their cruises there.

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