Quantum Cruise to Japan from China

Discussion in 'Royal Caribbean' started by ronandannette, Sep 9, 2017.

  1. ronandannette

    ronandannette I gave myself this tag and I "Like" myself too!

    Joined:
    May 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,299
    This may be a long-shot, but has anyone here cruised the Quantum in Asia? I've never even really considered visiting Asia but a couple of days ago we received an in-box alert on a deal for a land-and-sea package that's an almost unbelievably good deal. We've checked out the details and found that the offer is legit and now we're seriously thinking about booking it for Christmas 2018.

    I'm looking for any feedback you might have if you've sailed this route. There's some stuff over on CC, but surprisingly little - maybe due to the fact that there are only a handful of Westerners (or what they apparently call "International" passengers) that take these trips. I'm most interested in knowing whether or not we could blend in, given that the on-board experience is apparently very customized for the Chinese traveler. I'd also be curious about just exactly what is different from the cruise experience we're used to.

    Culture-shock isn't really a problem - we sometimes have that even when travelling to the States! I don't expect other parts of the world to be like home. But we are used to a certain uniformity of experience on cruise ships. All input will be very helpful. TIA! :wave2:
     
  2. 3monkeys4me

    3monkeys4me Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Messages:
    361
    I have not been on a cruise in Asia, though we do travel in Asia quite a bit. We had looked at the cruise you are talking about, as well as one on Ovation from Singapore. Ultimately, we decided that we didn't want to do on the the cruises out of China since they tend to be immersive. Our oldest daughter has food anxiety and a bit of social anxiety so we didn't think she would have a good experience. When we travel on land, it is easy to run to McDonalds or something similar and hang out in our hotel room until she is ready to be back out but on a cruise ship the options are a lot more limited. If you have traveled in China before then you are aware of some of the issues concerning personal space and not forming lines. etc... I don't find it too be that big of a deal, but some people do.

    Ultimately, we decided on a Radiance of the Seas cruise to New Zealand out of Sydney. Good luck deciding!
     
  3. Avatar

    Advertisement


    to hide this advert.
  4. ronandannette

    ronandannette I gave myself this tag and I "Like" myself too!

    Joined:
    May 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,299
    Thanks! No, we've never been to China or anywhere in Asia at all - never had any interest really. We wouldn't be considering it now either if the deal wasn't so spectacular. Neither of us have any "special needs" that would be impacted by the cultural differences but I'm VERY uncomfortable dealing with language barriers - I find myself extremely embarrassed not to be able to communicate. And unfortunately I don't speak or read any language besides English.

    Mostly I'm just confused. We would certainly go with an open mind (and the cheap price would temper our expectations a little too). But I've read such conflicting opinions over on CC. Some posters describe it as being worse than hell and are extremely derogatory towards the Chinese passengers. Others don't seem too be alarmed. :confused:
     
  5. 3monkeys4me

    3monkeys4me Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Messages:
    361
    Some people have a really hard time accepting differences in culture. For example, mainland Chinese tend to push through a crowd and they don't really line up. People that aren't used to that think they are being rude. They aren't being ride they are just doing what is acceptable in their culture. Table manners are a also a bit different. It doesn't bother my husband or myself, but it can come as a bit of a culture shock. In contrast, we get a ton of Japanese and South Korean tourists where I live and I have alwasy found them to be very friendly and polite (by Western standards).

    I have heard that the cruises that originate from China have most of the announcements in Mandarine first then in English. I would expect the crew to speak English though so I wouldn't worry about that part. Smiles and gestures can get you pretty far with the other passengers.

    If you are up for an adventure, I would go for it. But I love traveling in Asia. We lived in Italy for a few years and i never thought I would love another part of the world as much as I loved Europe but I was wrong. I also only speak English, though I try to learn a few new words when visiting another country. I have a hard time learning languages no matter how hard I try. If you decide not to do this particular cruise but are still interested in a cruise in Asia I would totally recommend one that leaves out of Hong Kong. Hong Kong is VERY easy to get around in as an English speaker plus it is a fun and interesting place to visit. I haven't been to Japan yet, but I have heard it is a fairly easy country to get around in as well.
     
  6. dolphingirl47

    dolphingirl47 In Search of the Tag Fairy

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    30,959
    We are booked on a 6 night Japan cruise out of Shanghai on Quantum in December. We sailed on Ovation from Barcelona to Dubai last year and I fell in love with this class of ship. I got an amazing offer on this cruise and we will combine this with a trip to Beijing,Tokyo Disneyland and Shanghai Disneyland. I am ever so slightly nervous (mainly about being able to communicate during the land-based portion of the trip, but also hugely excited.

    Corinna
     
  7. ronandannette

    ronandannette I gave myself this tag and I "Like" myself too!

    Joined:
    May 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,299
    I can't wait to hear how it goes! :boat:
     
  8. dolphingirl47

    dolphingirl47 In Search of the Tag Fairy

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    30,959
    I will definitely report back.

    Corinna
     
    ronandannette likes this.
  9. Hills of Hasland UK

    Hills of Hasland UK Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    Messages:
    21
    About to book a cruise out of Beijing next October, previously cruised with DCL and Celebrity. Looking forward to being ‘international travellers’ - as a Brit not sure how I will cope with no queue etiquette and cannot wait for our first visit to Disneyland Hong Kong!!
     
  10. dolphingirl47

    dolphingirl47 In Search of the Tag Fairy

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    30,959
    We have recently come back from our first ex-China cruise and did not really have any issues with lack of queue etiquette. A couple of times somebody got a little close, but not to an extend that it would have been an issue. Let's put it that way, I had less issues with lack of queue etiquette in China than I have on an average trip to Disneyland Paris.

    Corinna
     
  11. dolphingirl47

    dolphingirl47 In Search of the Tag Fairy

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    30,959
    As promised, I am reporting back. We returned from our amazing trip just before Christmas, but I have been crazy busy since. China has made such an impression on me that I am starting a Mandarin course next week. I can't wait to go back.

    Our cruise on Quantum was somewhat unusual as far as cruises on that ship go. We did a 6 night cruise, which is classified as a special cruise. We had 900 international guests on this cruise. However, a large percentage of the international guests were from Hong Kong. We had an absolute ball. The crew were amazing. We found the local cruisers to be warm and welcoming. They also seemed to be absolutely intrigued by us. We kept getting asked if they could take a photo with us.

    One of the first things we noticed is that the deck plans on the Royal Caribbean website are wrong. According to the deck plans, Quantum does not have Music Hall, but when we got on the ship, it was there. The Solarium, which is an adult only area on Ovation and Anthem, is a suite area on Quantum. Fortunately we had a junior suite and therefore had access. This was a really nice perk to have. There is less furniture in the Solarium on Quantum than this was the case on Ovation giving this a really spacious feel. During the day, they had desserts and fruit out and before dinner, there were hot and cold appetizers.

    I knew before the cruise that Quantum charges for iFly and North Star. I was very surprised when I found out that they are also charging for the bumper cars. This was my favourite activity on Ovation, but we did not bother on Quantum. $5 for about 5 minutes seemed a little steep. I was passing the Seaplex during one of the sessions and had a quick look and there were only half a dozen bumper cars out.

    To my surprise, there were actually quite a few activities like trivia in English. On the Daily Compass, it stated which activities were in English and which were in Mandarin.

    I had thought that most of the crew would be Chinese, but this was not the case. All of the cruise director's staff with the exception of the cruise director were Chinese and most of the Guest Services staff, but other than that, there was a similar mix of nationalities that you would expect on any Royal Caribbean staff. Our stateroom host was from Indonesia and our server from the Philippines. Everybody spoke fluent English irrespective on where they came from. The only exception to this was the photography staff, who are employed by a different company. The photographers spoke hardly any English.

    If you have any questions, please ask.

    Corinna
     
    gumbypee likes this.
  12. JT_Perry

    JT_Perry Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2017
    Messages:
    15
    Thanks for reporting back. Those two countries are on my bucket list! I've never considered this before, but I guess if the price is right, anything is possible!

    This question might be a bit hard to answer, but cost wise, how would you say it is compared to other cruises that usually go to Caribbean destinations?
     
  13. dolphingirl47

    dolphingirl47 In Search of the Tag Fairy

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    30,959
    This was definitely one of the most amazing trips we have ever taken.

    To put this into perspective, I am in the UK. As far as flights are concerned, the flight to China were comparable in cost to what we would pay for flights to Florida. We had a junior suite and paid for this for the six nights what we had previously paid for an inside cabin on a 5 night Caribbean cruise. Not all ex-China cruises are that cheap, but there are definitely bargains to be had. We found everything in China to be very good value including excursions, admission prices (paid £37 for a day at Shanghai Disneyland), public transport, hotels and food. Japan was more expensive compared to China, but still nowhere near as expensive as I had expected. The one bigger expense is the Chinese visa which cost us £151 for a 2 year multiple entry visa.

    Corinna
     

Share This Page