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Dive Review of KLM Euphoria in
Indonesia/Raja Ampat

KLM Euphoria: "Raja Ampat Liveaboard Euphoria", Nov, 2016,

by Lynn Klassen, BC, CA ( 1 report with 3 Helpful votes). Report 9474 has 3 Helpful votes.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 3 stars Food 1 stars
Service and Attitude 1 stars Environmental Sensitivity 1 stars
Dive Operation 2 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 2 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Euphoria Nov/Dec 2016
Boarded the Euphoria in Sorong on November 23, 2016 and disembarked the vessel on December 4, 2016
We were in the second of two groups of Canadian scuba divers that traveled Raja Ampat for 11 days on the live aboard Euphoria. The trip was originally booked approximately 2 years previous. We were a late booking as one of the original couples had to back out of the trip at the last minute. We took over their space on the trip in July of 2016 as it was a destination we had been reading about and this was an opportunity to finally get there.
Overall we found the condition of the boat to be acceptable. The housekeeping crew kept the staterooms and common areas clean and tidy. We found the dive guides and boatmen to be hard working and willing to do anything that was asked of them as long as it was within their realm to approve the request. The only issue with the crew that we had would be with the cook who we were told was a last minute replacement for the trip.
Our hopes that what was to be the trip of a lifetime were diminished by the self-described part owner/manager of the operation. One would expect that a person in the position of ownership or manager would lead by example and go out of his way to make sure that his guests left his boat at the end of their trip wanting to recommend his boat to friends in the diving community. We left the boat after counting down the last days to when we would get back to land.
Since getting off the boat I have been trying to put together the words that would accurately and fairly describe our live aboard experience on the Euphoria. As I wrote earlier we have no issues with the majority of the crew as they did whatever they could to make our experience memorable. I believe most will agree that the food is probably the most important aspect of life on a boat. At the beginning of the trip we found the food palatable but by about the halfway point in the trip it became mundane. You can only eat essentially the same menu which was for the most part fish, rice, beans or some sort of spinach type vegetable. Soups were essentially a tasteless broth and deserts were generally another tasteless dish. When we started choosing toast for dinner over the offerings from the kitchen it should say everything that needs to be said about the food. One night when most of the main course was left on the serving table led to a change in the menu from fish to chicken. Unfortunately it wasnít completely cooked so we passed on that as well. One night there was a barbeque on the beach. It was an amazing scene to be sitting on a white sand beach in a tropical paradise with a roaring fire burning at the waterís edge. The chicken that came off the grill was again not properly cooked and in my case it ended up in the underbrush. At some point the water coming through the water maker started to taste of salt. Included in the trip was juice and soft drinks. One would have expected there to be more choices than Coca Cola for soft drinks and Tang or some powdered drink that was called juice. Sprite was also on board but we were told that was only to be served as part of a special drink.
Prior to each dive the manager Artur would give a dive briefing. It didnít take too long to realize that his briefings were incomplete or didnít match the site that we would dive. Dives we were told there would be a significant current were usually found to be calm and on dives that were to be calm we would run into a significant current. I understand that currents can be hard to predict but for someone who claims the experience that Artur claims to have in the area I would have expected better accuracy both of the currents and the bottom topography. As hard as it may be to believe one of our briefings was effectively roll off the boat, drop down and swim around for a while and come up and the boat will pick you up.
Of the two dive tenders one had engine problems. To keep it running one of the boatmen or dive guides would have to keep squeezing the primer ball. On days where that would no longer work we were towed to the site by the other boat. While we were diving the boatmen would continue to work on it and usually had it running again for our return. In talking to the boatmen I found that they were interested in trying to fix it but didnít have the necessary parts. I made the suggestion that part of the problem may be that there was a leak in the fuel system someplace and they did replace a hose that made some difference but was not the full cure. Because we had people with us that were on the first trip we found out that they had the same problem during the previous trip. In between trips the boat stays in Sorong resupplying for 4 days which should have allowed for the repairs to the tender. It may be a nuisance when diving to have an engine that canít be depended on to run at all times but should there have been an emergency on board those dive skiffs would be pressed into a potential lifesaving rescue service.
We found Arturís professionalism to be sorely lacking. He showed no interest in his customers in the short times that he was in the common areas. I realize that we are in a different country where customs are different but I donít believe that can excuse him for keeping the company of a very young lady in his cabin. At first I hoped that it was his daughter that was coming out with her dad over the holidays but it didnít take long to realize that was not the case. I had occasion to share my concerns regarding a couple of problems on the boat and found him to be disinterested at best. The first issue was when his guides insisted on swimming into the current. I can understand it when there is something to see and might be worth the effort but after it was repeated a couple of times I went to him and requested that he talk to the guides to change that (I would have talked to the guide myself but there was a language barrier). During the exchange I found him to be defensive and showed little interest in speaking to the guides. I effectively had to tell him that we would no longer swim into the current and if his guides insisted on doing so we would not follow them. The other issue was with the water maker. At some point in the trip the water started to taste salty. When he was told this his solution was to go to one of the large water containers in the galley and take a drink. He then pronounced the water just fine. In my opinion the correct solution would have been to change the membrane or serve the bottled water that was stored under one of the benches in the galley. Once found we solved the issue by helping ourselves to the bottled water. Both issues were resolved but not in a manner that could be called a display of customer service.
I expect Artur will question why there was no complaint made to him about the food. For me the answer to that is that the response by him to previous issues raised was poor at best. As well our experience was already negative and potentially making it worse during the last 3 days by making a request that probably was impossible to accommodate probably wouldnít help the situation.
We have talked of going to Raja Ampat for a number of years. We have done the trip now and we enjoyed meeting the new people that our sport makes happen. We enjoyed our interactions with the crew on board and donít hold them responsible for what could have been a far better experience. That responsibility lies at the feet of Artur our manager/owner as he is the person that can make the changes necessary to improve the atmosphere on his boat. At the time we booked the trip we looked on line to see if there were any comments regarding the Euphoria but found none of substance. I write this in the hopes that describing our experience will allow others to carefully evaluate their choice of a live aboard dive boat in Raja Ampat.
In talking to people in the local diving industry since our departure from the boat we now believe that we witnessed illegal fishing in the Raja Ampat marine sanctuary. We have been told that fishing is illegal within the sanctuary but throughout our trip we witnessed the crew fishing on a daily basis. We were also asked by these people what dive stood out the most on our trip. They were very surprised when we told them it would be the dives we did in Bunaken. They went on to tell us that we must have not done the best sites in Raja Ampat. They also told us that they were surprised that our itinerary took us to such a small area in the sanctuary. They told us that on 10 day trips that they put together the itinerary takes them to a far larger area than what we had seen. A recent article in Canadaís Diver Magazine describes a 10 day trip on the Raja Ampat Aggressor which took their patrons to Baljullol, Wayil Batan and Misool.
There is a fee to dive in the sanctuary. Before boarding the boat we were told that the fee was one million Indonesian rupiah. When it came time to pay the fee we were told that it was US $100.00 With the exchange rate that amount would come to about one million three hundred thousand rupiah. When I asked about the discrepancy I was told that the fee had been raised by the government. Since getting home I have emailed the Indonesian tourism website and have been told that the fee is one million Indonesian rupiah. When I checked on the Euphoria website it currently quotes the fee as one million Indonesian rupiah.
This was our first live aboard dive trip to Indonesia and it has left us wondering if we want to risk another to the area. In speaking to others that have travelled the area they tell us that theirs was a far better experience. We have long been told to choose a boat that has been in operation for at least a couple of years so they have time to fine tune their operation and in this case the boat began operations in 2012. In looking back now, when we couldnít find any reports about the boat on line, we should have asked for contact information for those on recent trips on the Euphoria.
Websites KLM Euphoria   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Philippines, Caribbean, Pacific Northwest, Hawaii, Mexico
Closest Airport Sorong Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, cloudy, dry Seas calm, currents
Water Temp 28-29°C / 82-84°F Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 50-100 Ft/ 15-30 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions 1 hour max bottom time
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? no

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics N/A

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 2 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Not set up for photographers
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Report currently has 3 Helpful votes

Subscriber's Comments

By Jim Willoughby in OR, US at Oct 14, 2017 21:54 EST  
Our group charted this boat in April of 2016 and this trip report is almost exactly the same as if I had written it myself. There certainly has been no improvement in the operations if the same conditions exist 10 months later.
By William Golley in BC, CA at Jul 21, 2019 13:21 EST  
I was on this trip with Lynn and can confirm her report is accurate in every detail. If Artur is still involved with this boat you are advised to stay well away.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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