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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
I am a former cancer patient. I entered remission just a few months ago and had my leg amputated. This was my first cruise. I want to start off with the musicians. There was music for everybody’s taste. But I enjoyed ALL of them. Luisa, ... Read More
I am a former cancer patient. I entered remission just a few months ago and had my leg amputated. This was my first cruise. I want to start off with the musicians. There was music for everybody’s taste. But I enjoyed ALL of them. Luisa, Juliana and Juan in the Accidental String Trio were just...the only word to describe it was beautiful. Neil was singing and Jammin’ the reggae hits on the steel drums. And Rob was rocking it on the guitar. DJ JD with the hits. The Brassaholics with the amazing Maroon 5 medley. And the Latin Band covering latin hits. Emma, Layla and Francois brought so much energy throughout the whole ship. Vargus Mason with the jokes! T.A. Williams at the Piano Bar. Diana and other bartenders tending the bar at the Lobby very well, including the bartenders on Lido who also bring their energy to the ship. I tipped what I could. Next I want to say how much I really appreciate how kind, thoughtful, and caring the staff was. They always offered help. I don’t usually accept help but I made some exceptions. I also made some friends on the cruise. The whole experience is one to remember. They always had smiles on their faces, and always greeted as we cross paths. And as you’re reading this to all of the staff, I just want to thank all of you from the bottom of my heart. I hope I get to meet you all again. Cheers "Let your smile change the world, don't let the world change your smile..." - unknown "My cup is full to the brim, I could go on and on, the full has never been told" - Buju Banton Side Note: Im looking for a job also (galvancromeo@gmail.com) all photos are unedited Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We had a great time, but there could /should have been more for the teen age group to do. For example there was a dodgeball tournament , but for adults. Kids ran around the ship a lot, unsupervised. There were several fights in the ... Read More
We had a great time, but there could /should have been more for the teen age group to do. For example there was a dodgeball tournament , but for adults. Kids ran around the ship a lot, unsupervised. There were several fights in the arcade that lasted long enough for my son to video and security knew nothing about it. There were tons if activities for adults and they were all great. The staff is excellent, very helpful, friendly and accommodating. The room was nice, clean and our steward Mudi, was great! At night, the room temp was warm and the air did not seem to be working at its fullest, but not terrible. Getting on and off was very easy for the cruise as well as for the excursions. Food was good and there was plenty of options and choices. Our cruise director marQ was awesome and heand many of the cruise staff learned and remembered many of the guests names. This made it very personal and fun as well. Excursions: amber cove- we did the horseback riding at Seahorse ranch and it was great. Horses are beautiful and Fausto, our guide was very informative on our way there. San Juan: the rainforest and Old SanJuan, very nice and interesting St. Thomas: snorkeling sea turtle cove, this was beautiful and we wish it would have lasted longer Grand Turks: the beach had a lot to do for everyone the water was beautiful. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Prior to this cruise I had not cruised on the Valor Before, however I did cruise on the Pre Inaugural sailing of her older sister the Carnival Spirit. I was somewhat concerned by others commenting that the ship is showing its age. Upon ... Read More
Prior to this cruise I had not cruised on the Valor Before, however I did cruise on the Pre Inaugural sailing of her older sister the Carnival Spirit. I was somewhat concerned by others commenting that the ship is showing its age. Upon boarding I did a quick ship inspection and I was very impressed. The ship is not new, but with that said I found the floors, furniture, and ships interior all to be in excellent condition. Also we had two cabins and I found both to be in very good condition. Comfortable mattresses, couch and chairs in room in good shape, clean bathroom, and very functional closet and drawer space. The one major drawback to this cruise is not just limited to the Carnival Valor, but all the Carnival ships I have sailed on in the past couple of years, that being the quality of both food and service. To me both began their decline shortly after the retirement of former CEO Bob Dickerson, or "Uncle Bob" as he was known by employees. On our five night cruise there were two nights I did not eat what I ordered. One was the Beef Lasagna which had zero texture. It was almost mush. The pasta was was overcooked and there was no flavor at all.I ordered another entree and it was fair. The other was the Southern Fried Chicken. I am from the South and I know fried chicken. I got a small breast and drumstick i think it was, but did not keep it long enough to find out. The chicken was very dry inside, and the outside was way overcooked. It is evident that they cooked it at too high a temperature. In the Buffet lines I found the quality to be about the same. The selection also left something to be desired. Also I remember the good ole days of eating all the deserts because they were all so good, but now I try all of them to find one that is good. In all my life I have never had cheese cake that was anything like the stuff on the ship. It seems that it is less cheese and more cake. The only other negative I can think of is the Endless Bubbles program. Compared to RCCL sodas the Carnival program is bad. There are no soda machines so you have to wait in line at a bar and you end up with a warm soda being poured onto ice. Also in the Buffet areas nobody comes along anymore to take drink orders, so you have to get your food, then go outside and stand in line at a bar to get a warm soda on ice (can you tell this is my pet peeve?). The warm soda melts the ice and you have a watered down soda. Carnival needs to consider investing in the self serve soda machines like they have on RCCL. One more thing to note is that in the dining room the waiters used to unroll your napkin and place it on you lap and hand you a menu already opened. Minor thing but they do not do that any more. Also on evening turn down they would always place a mint on your pillow and they no longer do that either. Some of these are small things, but it would be wise to remember that a lot of little bits creates a gob.Other than these items I was happy with the cruise and would consider cruising on the Valor again. OK.. One more thing. I find cruise directors to be so full of themselves. They remind me of the plastic game show hosts. So fake. I took a Carnival last year and had a cruise director named "Jess From The U.S. This young lady was such a delight. She did not try to be the star of the show. She was herself and came across as being real. We need more cruise directors like her. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I am choosing to writing to a review to help someone else who is researching this ship the same way that I did. I’m a mother of 4 and my children have only ever sailed with Disney Cruise Lines before.I have to admit I was a little ... Read More
I am choosing to writing to a review to help someone else who is researching this ship the same way that I did. I’m a mother of 4 and my children have only ever sailed with Disney Cruise Lines before.I have to admit I was a little worried to try Carnival based on some reviews I read. We wanted to experience Disney Parks during our spring break but couldn’t tag the Disney Cruise line into our budget. Carnival Offered a great price for this 4 day Easter Cruise that we could afford. We used Mears transportation from a Disney’s Animal kingdom lodge to Port Canaveral. For $35 a person. We used Carnivals transportation back to MCO airport. You book that through the excisions. It was the same price I believe Both were great On board the Liberty we had 2 connecting balcony rooms on Deck 8 aft. Rooms 8378 and 8380. We had 2 adults and 4 children diving us into 3 in each cabin. The price per cabin was $1500. Excellent deal.the rooms were ready right at 1:30pm like stated upon checking in Prior to booking I started researching the Liberty and found some negative reviews here on Cruise Critic which had me very worried. I am also a Travel Agent so I consider myself a Travel Expert with a lot of knowledge when it comes to what to expect when it comes to Cruising. If you are familiar with Disney Cruise lines you know that they are top notch. High quality. I’m here today to let families know that the Liberty is a excellent ship and I give it 5 stars because even though it is an older ship the staff has done a great job at taking care of it. I constantly saw crew members cleaning, scrubbing grout, being attentive to guests as well as also being very friendly. The service was perfect! The crew members onboard this ship work very hard. The kids club with Dr. Suess was great. The dining room staff was great. The gym was great and very clean. We work out everyday and this was important to me. So I was very happy with the gym. The spa services as well. The evening entertainment was soooo good. The shows were very well done. (I’ve seen some cheesy ones on Carnival before) Lots of family entertainment as well as separate adult entertainment. The dive in movies were perfect choices and they give you a blanket and popcorn. Cookie the cruise director is the best cruise director that I have ever met. Seriously that guy is going to go far in life. He stated he has only been a director for a year. Find the ship that he is on and you aren’t promised a good time. Overall my entire family was very happy with the Carnival Liberty. Guys burgers are the best here as well as The Wok on the lido deck or you can grab a sub sandwich from the deli, pizza, seafood, soooo many choices of food on the Lido deck. We don’t drink alcohol so that is the only area that I lack an opinion on. However the bar service seemed to be very productive from what I could tell. We purchased the soda package and my family did get their sodas in a timely manner. We stayed away from the Casino so honestly we didn’t experience much of any secondhand smoke. Also one of my concerns. No need to worry We sailed to The Bahamas and at Nassau we did the Atlantis Aquaadventure. This was the very best time of the entire week! Highly recommend. Worth every penny For Freeport we did the Beach day at Lucaya for $44. Also excellent. We didn’t purchase the lunch package here. You don’t need it unless you drink alcohol. You are back at the shop early enough to eat lunch when you return. We order snacks and sodas from the bar area here and paid less that $10 for the snacks and the sodas were $4. Also bottled water here is $4 They give you a chair and a umbrella as part of your package. Beautiful beach with volleyball, basketball and straw market shopping. Very safe. Also the day of embarking was so easy and hassle free. The quickest check in I’ve ever experienced. I read other reviews that stated the ship smelled. We did not have that experience. At least not on deck 8 anyway. Our bathrooms in our cabins did not smell. One evening my shower drain clogged and I called maintenance. They were there within 10 minutes to fix it in a jiffy and all was good. I hope this helps a mom out there on a budget who is wondering if a Carnival Ship would be good for her family! I encourage you that it is. We’ve done 9 cruises and mostly all Disney as a family and my children loved this ship! We would sail The Liberty again! Thank you to every crew member onboard. They really do work hard. Also helpful hint I booked this cruise on Black Friday with a special price and gave it as a Christmas gift to my kids knowing we would have school spring break so this cruise served many great purposes for us and like I said was so very affordable Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
I wanted to spend my 65th birthday on a beach in Mexico, so we booked this cruise on the Fantasy. We embarked in Mobile, which is close to home, and drove down the day before the cruise from Atlanta. Minus our mandatory stop at Cracker ... Read More
I wanted to spend my 65th birthday on a beach in Mexico, so we booked this cruise on the Fantasy. We embarked in Mobile, which is close to home, and drove down the day before the cruise from Atlanta. Minus our mandatory stop at Cracker Barrel and a gas stop, it took about 5 hours. The night before the cruise we stayed at the Microtel in Saraland. They offer a great park and cruise package with breakfast all for a reasonable price. The hotel is in walking distance of three major restaurant chains, so dinner can be in any budget zone. After a good night's sleep on a great bed, we got up, repacked, had breakfast and then at 10:30 were "vanned" over to the port. Apparently there was a medical emergency disembarking which held us up a bit getting on the ship, but no problem, we are on vacation. Embarking was easy, and we were on board by 11:45, and since we finally made platinum, got to go to our cabin. We love to cruise, but money is tight, so to get a window, we book Interior Porthole. This cruise we had a porthole on the Empress level, close to the action, in the front of the ship. Downside? If the ship is rocking you will feel it here more than being in the center. The upside? Portholes are only for two people, so the running kids in the hall end before you get to that section. The cabin size is good, the service excellent, and our towel animals were a hoot! The shower was a good size, the only thing wrong was an odd smell, that we finally figured out was the shower water when you first turn on the water. So, not a problem in the long run. We don't spend a lot of time in our cabin, because there is so much to do on the ship. When we cruise, we dine like Hobbits, there is always second breakfast, lunch, tea time, and dinner. I know there is a late night buffet, but we haven't made it to that for years. We had only two situations in the dining room that were disappointing, over cooked fish, which the wait staff easily remedied, and one breakfast that was delivered in reverse of how we ordered-which you cant fix, but all the meals were tasty, and delicious. We had anytime dining, the first night, we went early- and there was no wait at all. There was a 30 minute wait on Elegant night-we went at 7:30, and on our last night we went at 7:45, and was told there would be a 30 minute wait, which turned out to be 5 minutes. Breakfasts were great in the MDR, and on our last day at sea, they introduced a new brunch menu, with about 12 new items that were extra. Lobster Eggs Benedict? Peel and eat shrimp? Interesting, but I don't want to pay more for breakfast. Steak and Eggs is still my favorite breakfast. (second breakfast after banana nut bread and coffee on the Lido). We are really kids in adult old bodies, so after we donated to the casino, we enjoyed Make it with Michaels (think Camp Art) something that you make in an hour, and can take home with you as a souvenir. We don't do the art auctions, but we did participate in the Art scavenger hunt-do this as a family, it was fun, and more eyes on your team help. We got involved with Trivia pursuit, saw the new Universe Lounge Country show, and enjoyed the Comedy Club. We also enjoyed just simply relaxing on the Verandah level. We love the back of the ship, where there is no noise, but the sound of the wind, the water and the children playing on the water slides. One thing that we really enjoyed on this cruise, was that the Lido deck was not a blast of music in the mornings, It was quiet until noon. Wonderful to walk up in the morning to the sound of surf and wind. !! And for all who missed the Caribbean sound of the steel drums, well, this is the ship for you, every day, either on deck, or by the casino bar. In the Atrium Lounge there was a great country singer, and by the casino once in a while was a great guitar player-played a great Eric Clapton style. Hats off to all of the folks who work on the ship! Everyone was excellent, friendly and helpful! Alina, our MDR hostess remembered us from our last cruise, as did the assistant cabin steward, Nina. It's so nice to get a hug, and a Welcome home! The folks at the Guest services were incredible. BUT to families with kids, Camp Carnival is their care takers, not the cleaning staff. Tell your children that if they push every button on the elevators the elevator monster will come get them! In Cozumel we enjoyed a day at the beach on Isla Pasion. It was my birthday, and I spent it at the beach! The staff bent over backwards to accommodate my DH's walking disabilities-the catamaran ride to the island gives you a great land view of the main city on Cozumel, and while it was a bit too cool to swim (I was the only adult to get in the water ) we do plan to go back to this fantastic destination. This excursion includes drinks and lunch but lunch is a bit bland and lacked in variety. We did not do an excursion in Costa Maya, which since we are not big shoppers was a mistake. Get out there in the jungle, it will do you good. BUT if you like to shop, this is a great port, they will barter with you (which I never see in Cozumel or Progresso), and everything that is not the norm is well priced. We hated to get off the ship to come home, but all trips must end sometime, so you can come home and plan another one. Disembarking is always a cluster, but at least this time I can honestly say, it was not due to folks who owed on their sail and sign cards- it was every one wanting to take off their own luggage. But we did get off, called our hotel (again they were fantastic) and after only one Cracker Barrel stop, we were home by 4. Would I do it again? Yup! DH wants to spend his birthday next year at Isla Pasion! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
In my opinion this cruise was not worth the amount I spent. I have sailed with Carnival 1 other time and it was the worst experience of my life and I almost never went on a cruise again after that. Last year we tried Royal Caribbean for ... Read More
In my opinion this cruise was not worth the amount I spent. I have sailed with Carnival 1 other time and it was the worst experience of my life and I almost never went on a cruise again after that. Last year we tried Royal Caribbean for the first time and loved it and this year I decided to give Carnival another chance. My mistake. I went with my boyfriend and 2 other couples so there was 6 of us in total. To begin, the embarkation process was smooth and quick as well as disembarkation. When we got to the room it was very small with no place to even put our suitcases to get them out of the way. I went on RC cruise line last year and the cabins were much bigger. This is not my main concern. Dining times were filled up so fast we had no choice but to choose 8:15 which was very late to eat dinner. Also, it was the prime time for many events so we either missed the events or we missed dinner. The activities and entertainment were a lot of fun for all ages. The comedians were very funny and the deck parties were a blast. Our entertainment director, Schwartz, was very entertaining and really made the whole cruise a lot more enjoyable. The service was great. Most people were very helpful and friendly and remembered names. We did an excursion at St. Thomas and we did the Turtle Cove snorkel. It was AMAZING and I would highly recommend doing this excursion. Grand Turk was very busy as there were multiple boats there so the beach was packed before we even got off the ship. There were no chairs anywhere so we had no choice but to go to the pool. Puerto Rico was a port I have been to before. Lots of little shops and places set up selling things but other than that there was not much to do. The next topic is the things that bothered me most. My boyfriend and I bought the endless bubbles package. It was not endless. You could only get a drink if you were sailing unless you wanted to pay taxes. The package did not include a cup to refill. You had to stand and wait at the bar to get a drink. Also, if you were thirsty after 2am it was water or nothing. There was no way of getting a drink at night because all of the bars closed and that was the only way to get a drink. Also, every bar closed at about 12-1 am except the casino bar. So if you wanted a drink you had to go all the way down to the casino until they closed at 2 as well. We did not get our use out of our drink package at all and a lot of people we talked to did not even buy the drink package but were still being served drinks. The buffet hours were very weird and things opened and closed at weird times. The only thing open late was pizza which sucked. The food itself was not great. The food choices at dinner were horrible. The desserts at dinner were horrible as well. The buffet was hit or miss but for the most part it was not too bad. The desserts at the buffet were great. The burger joint was probably the best food on the entire boat. Lastly, the picture situation. They took amazing pictures so we wanted to buy all of them like we did on RC. There was absolutely no option to buy all of our pictures. If we wanted them all it was $600. On Royal Caribbean for $300 we got all of our pictures on a flash drive that we got to take home with us. Overall, our experience was not great. We will not be sailing with Carnival again and will be going back to Royal Caribbean. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
First of all, I must say that our cabin steward was an absolute sweetheart. Many of the ship crew were also great. The downfall is that the ship is old and small. The metal around the decks is painted over eaten away steel. We found ... Read More
First of all, I must say that our cabin steward was an absolute sweetheart. Many of the ship crew were also great. The downfall is that the ship is old and small. The metal around the decks is painted over eaten away steel. We found holes throughout the railings. The carpets throughout are old and many sofa/restaurant bench upholstery have stains. There is a peculiar smell about the ship. Many times there are sewage and/or grey water smells. The buffet was subpar. Desserts were great the first night then thereafter were dry and flavorless. The sit-down dining was better but not outstanding. The ship lacked entertainment. There was a comedy show that was good. Many of the shows in the liquid lounge revolved around what to buy on the islands and promoted their sales in their ship stores. The ship was small and if you are planning a long cruise you might want to choose one with many stops so you are not bored to death multiple days at seas. We were in a cabin with a window. The room was clean the bathroom was dirty in corners with caked on dirt. I suppose they don't have time for deep cleaning since a steward told me when we were leaving the ship that they were boarding again in one day. This ship does not compare to Royal Carribean or MSC. We were disappointed and felt it was a major waste of money. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
People don't seem to review the shorter cruises out of Long Beach, so I wanted to write one for last week. This was our third Imagination cruise from Long Beach, and it was great! Pre-cruise: Got to Long Beach the day before ... Read More
People don't seem to review the shorter cruises out of Long Beach, so I wanted to write one for last week. This was our third Imagination cruise from Long Beach, and it was great! Pre-cruise: Got to Long Beach the day before the cruise, and spent the day at Cabrillo Beach (San Pedro) relaxing in the sun. Stayed at the Golden Sails in Long Beach, which was a fine hotel 20 minutes from port. On Sunday morning, we left the hotel at 10:20, with zero traffic, we were parked in the garage at 10:45. Embarkation: This is the easiest embarkation port of the many we have used. We were completely checked in and waiting to board before 11 am. FttF was called at 11:11 (good luck!!) and we were boarded very quickly. Straight to our stateroom (E90 - right off the atrium) to drop bags, and we were at Guy's Burgers before 11:30. Stateroom: Excellent choice (E 90) for access to everything. No problems with noise, smell or stateroom steward. Received twice-daily cleaning as requested. Room was in excellent shape, with comfy bedding and everything in working order. Dining: Had Anytime dining, which worked great. Ate all breakfasts in the MDR, and avoided the buffet completely. Lunch was Guys, Blue Iguana or Deli. Sea day brunch was awesome as ever---steak and eggs was great. All dinners were good, with many choices, and we ordered double appetizers or entrees more than once. Brought case of Coke Zero and two wine bottles in carryon, so we brought our own glasses to dinner each night. Worked beautifully. Day one: Bags were delivered before 12:30, so we were quickly unpacked, and headed to an empty Serenity deck. Relaxed until muster drill, then off to get dressed for dinner. Yes, we dress for dinner each night. Not over the top, but I wore a dress, and my husband wore button up shirt and slacks each night. Comedians were okay this trip, and we enjoyed family and adult shows most days. Did a little dancing in the nightclub. Funniest thing was "80's hour", which was from 10 to 10:15 pm one night! Dance floor was packed for those fifteen minutes!!! Day two - Catalina: Breakfast in the MDR, then ready to tender to Catalina. Expected a crowd, but easily caught a tender with no wait. Didn't even use FttF tendering. Rented a golf cart for about 90 minutes for a nice tour. Walked around a bit peeking into shops for a little while. After that, we lounged on the beach by the dock for a few hours before returning to the ship for a late lunch. Short but fun day. Day three - Ensenada: This was a weird day. We had breakfast in the MDR again, and got off the ship easily at approximately 10:30. Nice walk into town along the new Malecon. The streets, stores, bars, restaurants were EMPTY. It was amazing how few people we saw in Ensenada. Nothing like our past visits. We walked along the main street looking in a few stores. Had a quick (unsatisfying) lunch at a street restaurant, then hit our favorite Ensenada store that sells stained glass, and headed back to the ship. In the two years since we've been there, prices across the board in Ensenada have skyrocketed. Maybe that's why it was dead. Returned to the ship for Serenity deck and relaxation around 2:30. Day four: Day at sea started with sea day brunch, and consisted mostly of the Serenity deck! We went on this trip to relax, and relax we did! Got front row in Serenity, but it was packed by 10:30 that morning - don't dawdle! Disembarkation: So quick and easy! They started self-assist at 7 am. Started calling zones at 8:45, and did a last call for everyone to disembark by 9:05!!! Short wait for customs, and we were back in the car by 10 am. Overall: An excellent cruise for first-timers looking to try cruising, or for seasoned cruisers looking for a relaxing few days. We don't gamble on ships, and didn't drink too much. The ship was oddly empty for the most part (considering this was Holy Week/Spring Break). Never a wait at a bar, easy to get chairs on Lido and Serenity, no long lines at lunch locations. It was downright weird!!! For the price, it is an excellent value cruising experience, and keeps us satisfied between longer cruises. Next up for us a the Legend Transatlantic 2020! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We just got back from 6 nights on the Horizon. Had a great time and would sail this ship again. We were a family of 4 sailing at the same time as several other families from our neighborhood. My family stayed at Sunny Isles Residence Inn ... Read More
We just got back from 6 nights on the Horizon. Had a great time and would sail this ship again. We were a family of 4 sailing at the same time as several other families from our neighborhood. My family stayed at Sunny Isles Residence Inn and loved the pool and room. Price was more reasonable than anything closer to South Beach. Left for port around 9:30 AM and we were in the priority line by 10:00. We only had to wait about 5 minutes to get into the building. They began boarding the ship around 11am and we went straight to our cabins since we had Faster to Fun. We had Havana cabins 5209 and 5211. We had a cabana and our 13 and 16 yo had an interior. Our steward was efficient but I barely saw him. Our luggage didn’t arrive until after muster even with priority. Therefore plan accordingly and bring a carryon with a swim suit and change of clothes. We loved the Havana area but since our kids were mostly upstairs on decks 10 and 12. we didn’t use it as much as we thought. I did love the easy access of our location to the back stairs and everything on deck 5 including breakfast in Ocean Plaza and Coffee at Java Blue. We also loved having elevators and stairs nearby. We had early dining for our group of 17. Servers were good. Food was hit or miss. I had great short ribs but my friends was dry and crusty. Same with the prime rib. Best meal for me was taking advantage of the steakhouse selection and getting the filet and lobster. That and the teppayaki were worth the extra money. I also loved the pizza and I am disappointed they are switching to Papa Johns. I don’t even get that at home! My husband tried the Mongolian wok and hated it. He also had Sushi with my daughter and liked it. I tried guys burger and didn’t like it as much as last year on Glory. We only ate at the buffet 1 time and that was the late day in Cozumel. It was okay but nothing special. Kids did the ropes course and sky ride. They enjoyed the dive in movies but didn’t try the IMAX. Might be because the movies weren’t something they would want to see. My daughter said the waterslide was okay but gave her a wedgie. My son went to club O2 a lot and made a lot of good friends. He even went to Sea day brunch with a group of 16. Except for a couple of comedy shows we mostly went to the casino after dinner. Nice pit bosses but some of the dealers weren’t super friendly but most okay. I lost overall but that’s just bad luck or choice of seat! Overall it was s great week. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I chose this cruise to go visit Cuba and Key West with my husband. Carnival has found a way to nickel and dime you even when you pay for all such as drink package. No bartenders except in serenity that were eager to serve you. Anton was ... Read More
I chose this cruise to go visit Cuba and Key West with my husband. Carnival has found a way to nickel and dime you even when you pay for all such as drink package. No bartenders except in serenity that were eager to serve you. Anton was awesome and the only one to come back and keep us happy. All other bars you had to go to them and wait! Since they do automatic gratuity you get poor service. Food was ok....best thing was guys cheeseburgers. Tiny cups for water. Soda was flat that was part of my drink package. Not much entertainment during the day. Comedy shows were pretty good. One pool for whole ship. Definitely outdated even though it says remodeled in 2019. Would not recommend. Budget vacation/ budget ship! Very disappointed. We bought alcohol and was told by airport that cruise ship should have given us a bag for carrying it on plane-nope didn’t happen so we lost alcohol at security. Mel the cruise ship director was kind of rude. She didn’t have great things going on to engage cruisers. We could have visited Cuba on Tuesday and spent more time in Key West. Went on Monday to Cuba and all Museums are closed on Mondays...... Had to pay a $75/pp visa to go to Cuba. Our room attendant did a great job! Greeted us by first name every time we saw him! Asked me what I wanted done on a daily basis whether I needed more towels etc. he was always smiling!! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Sailed on the Freedom out of Galveston. First time in 10 years sailing on Carnival. Have sailed once with RC and 6 times with Disney. Embarkation was easy (we did have FTTF). We flew in the night before and stayed at a Holiday Inn ... Read More
Sailed on the Freedom out of Galveston. First time in 10 years sailing on Carnival. Have sailed once with RC and 6 times with Disney. Embarkation was easy (we did have FTTF). We flew in the night before and stayed at a Holiday Inn Express on points. Took a Lyft to port which was easy. We sat for maybe 30 minutes before boarding. No line for security and our bags were at our door when we boarded about 11:45. It was also nice to have a shorter line at guest services. We had an oceanview room on deck 2 forward (2288) The room was a good size, bed was comfy and there was plenty of storage. Liked the shelves in one of the closets for clothing and shoes, and suitcases fit under bed easily. Shower was ok but the water seemed to come out of the shower way too easily. Not enough water pressure for me either but the temp was ok. The main problem with the room was the noise. It was right across from where the stewards loaded their carts which was pretty noisy. It also really creaked a lot - there was a noise that sounded like a marble rolling above our heads a lot of the time. Kind of annoying! Room steward was awesome though. Always kept the room clean with ice etc... and was very friendly. The TV remote didn't work correctly. Food - the main dining room food was pretty good. IMO it was significantly better than RCL and about the same as DCL. Breakfast buffet was ok but it was the same exact thing every morning. Tried the Sea Day brunch one day and it was ok (pancakes were tough) but eggs were good. Loved the Guy's burgers. Really enjoyed the sushi (extra cost but got quite a big serving for the price). Also tried the crab sliders at the seafood shack - they were ok but the buns were hard. The burritos at Blue Iguana were also very good. We did try the steakhouse selection in the main dining room and thought the filets were very good. Not a noticeable difference (other than maybe 3 ounces) in quality of the included filet on the MDR menu though. Room service was quick but didn't enjoy the food all that much for the price. We did have the bubbles package for soda. Really didn't enjoy having to stand at a bar for a soft drink. Wish Carnival would do what RCL does with the freestyle machines. It seemed like such a waste to have canned sodas (not chilled at all) on the ship. You would have to pour it over a whole glass of ice which immediately watered it down! Now to the shows. Enjoyed the Hasbro game shows and Bingo. I also really liked the 80s pop show. Probably not fair to compare to DCL but the shows were not even in the same category as Disney. I knew that going in. The cruise director Emma was great and the singers/dancers were also very nice. We did get bored in the afternoon sometimes as there didn't seem to be much to do. Loved the comedians in the evening a couple of nights. Service. The MDR servers were very nice but after sailing on DCL really missed the interactions we are used to there. Service was usually pretty good but a couple of nights seemed really slow. We had the early assigned dining time ( 6 PM). The bartenders were all nice but sometimes really busy which meant waiting for 10 minutes for a drink. The room staff were great. I asked for a fan for our room the first night but it never showed up. I was able to use an app on my phone for white noise but still. The biggest difference we noticed was the décor and layout of the ship. It was very dark and IMO really ugly (very dated). I should have taken a picture of the pink snakeskin wallpaper in the dining room - so didn't match anything! The atrium area just felt dark and closed in and it took us a couple days to figure our way around. There are a couple of decks that you cannot walk all the way through as a dining room is in the middle. The pool deck had several levels but also felt really small and closed in. The adult pool at the far back of the ship was nice and more open though. I also didn't enjoy the smoke in the casino. I would have gambled a little bit but couldn't breathe in that area! It would be nice if they would consider maybe a time or two throughout the week where non smokers could enjoy the casino. Also, all week several of the elevators were not working (or just turned off). We visited Key West, Nassau and Freeport. In all three we just walked around the shopping areas. Freeport was not very nice - would really recommend an excursion there as the beaches looked nice. My daughter had a cast on her leg so we couldn't do our normal beachy excursions this trip. We had purchased the trolley tickets through Carnival but the line to get on was so long we ended up not using them. There was no shade while waiting. Also thought Carnival was a lot less organized with shore excursions. In Key West anyone with any excursion was supposed to meet in the dining room but there wasn't a Carnival staff member there to direct or ask questions. Overall we did enjoy the trip. It was about 1/2 the cost of DCL by the time you pay for all the extras. If we do another Carnival, we will try a newer ship and hope the layout and décor is better. I have another RCL and DCL booked so we shall see. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
We sailed the Carnival Breeze for our bi-annual Spring Break cruise, April 13-20, 2019. It was a great cruise but did have a few negatives. First, the good and very good: -Embarkation – the new way that Carnival does this worked ... Read More
We sailed the Carnival Breeze for our bi-annual Spring Break cruise, April 13-20, 2019. It was a great cruise but did have a few negatives. First, the good and very good: -Embarkation – the new way that Carnival does this worked very well, and boarding the ship was an easy process. Much better that the prior process of waiting in lines to see a representative, showing your credit card, getting your room keys, etc. Now it’s just walking into the security area, having your boarding pass scanned, getting a boarding group number, having your picture taken, getting screened and waiting for your number to be called. Your room keys are in a tamper-proof envelope in your cabin’s mailbox. -Food – the food everywhere was quite good, especially the desserts in the main dining room and the “Sweet Spot” in the Lido Marketplace. I wanted to try many of the dining options I’ve not tried on my prior Carnival cruises since the Breeze has so many to choose from. BTW, they changed the Tandoori station (which was included) in the aft pool area to a Seafood Shack (additional charges apply). I’m glad they did, as the lobster roll platter was outstanding – 2 rolls with fries for $14, and the lobster filling was fresh and plentiful. I also tried the new Carnival Deli menu – the Cuban sandwich was very good. Also, I tried the Mongolian Wok for the first time and enjoyed my noodles with beef in Sichuan sauce (spicy). I was going to try the free lunchtime pasta bar at Cucina del Capitano, but some of our cruise mates tried it and said it was nothing special. The new food tries also included Guy’s Pig and Anchor Barbecue (very good) and the light soup and salad lunch offerings in the Plaza Café. Of course, previously-experienced Guy’s Burger Joint was visited as well as the Blue Iguana Cantina for a breakfast burrito and lunchtime tacos. All very good as usual. We ate breakfast in the main dining room every morning except one, for Sea Day Brunch or Open Seating breakfast, to avoid the mobs of people in the Lido Marketplace. Food was good; however, it was hit and miss on the poached or over-easy eggs having a soft yolk. Dining room food for dinner was very good with few exceptions. -Drinks – we had the Cheers! Package so we were able to try many different concoctions from many different bars. Our favorites were the Casino Bar, Alchemy Bar and Red Frog Pub. Drinks were consistently prepared, and after-dinner specialty cocktails at Alchemy were a nightly event. -Entertainment – very good shows in the main theater, with talented singers & dancers and nice staging/special effects. The Country/Rock band and singing duet were both great. We enjoyed the live music nightly. They also had a modern string quartet that played today’s songs instead of traditional string compositions. -Shops – the Breeze has a wide variety of shops with reasonable prices. Of course, my wife got a “souvenir” at the EFFY fine jewelry shop. We also won a raffle there for a signature EFFY jeweled panther keychain and ruby pendant necklace. -Service – overall the service was quite good, and the crew we encountered friendly and wanting to help. Service at the bars was quick and efficient. Our dining room team (Early Seating Dinner) was hard working and did a good job all week, learning our names the first night and using them every night thereafter. However, it is apparent that they have reduced staff in recent years and the team was stretched thin on the busy nights (first night, Elegant nights, etc.), as the ship was at capacity, with 4700+ guests on board (standard double occupancy is 3690). The Guest Services staff were some of the best I’ve encountered – I’ll describe an issue I had with the cabin involving Guest Services later in this review. There were some inconsistencies with certain aspects of the service we experienced, which are also described later in this review. -Cabin Steward – our Steward Victoria was probably the best we’ve had on any cruise, on any cruise line. She did an amazing job of keeping our stateroom clean and comfortable and supplied with what we needed. -Casino – it was large with plenty of slots and table games. I don’t gamble, but my wife certainly made some donations on the slots. As mentioned previously, the bartending team was top-notch. However, as this was Carnival and the only indoor venue that allows smoking, be prepared for a constant smoke smell – the ventilation clears the actual smoke quickly, but the odor is persistent. Shore Tours – we did Carnival-sponsored tours in each of our four ports. All were fun and informative. Now, the not-so-good: -Cabin – although our category 8C veranda cabin was Carnival’s usual rather roomy size compared to other lines, with a comfortable bed and couch, our cabin #8441 developed a sewer-like smell shortly after sailing. Long story short, they were unable to resolve the issue during our voyage. Our steward said this was not the first time someone raised this issue, so I would recommend avoiding this cabin. That said, once I raised the issue with Guest Services, they did make every effort to resolve the issue, sending the floor manager, HVAC technician and even a Guest Services representative to investigate the matter. Our workaround was to leave the bathroom door slightly opened, as the air intake vent in the bathroom was quite powerful and kept the air circulating and the smell reduced. We bring a bungee cord with us to prop open the balcony door, so this was also done occasionally – when opening the cabin door at the same time, the air from the hallway comes rushing in to refresh the cabin air. These steps kept the issue to a minor annoyance, and Guest Services compensated us with an OBC that we felt was satisfactory compensation or our inconvenience. -Certain Main Dining Room Service – at Breakfast/Sea Day Brunch, it sometimes took a while to get attention by the servers after being seated. It sometimes took several minutes before we received water and coffee. Also, it sometimes took a while to receive our orders, even when adjacent tables received theirs even though being seated after us. Finally, getting bar drinks/wine at dinner was a challenge, especially in the first few days of the cruise. Things were better later in the week. -Crowds/Lines – this was the largest cruise ship we’ve ever sailed, and as mentioned previously, the ship was at capacity since it was a Spring Break cruise. The chair hogs we out in force, so we didn’t even try to lay out in the sun while on the ship. We got our sun time on our shore tours. Also, lines for certain food stations in the Lido Marketplace could be very long at peak breakfast and lunch times. In fact, the one morning we had breakfast on Lido the lines were so long at the buffet I was able to get a Blue Iguana burrito (no line!) and finish it before my wife returned with her eggs and bacon from the buffet. Finding available tables could also be a challenge. Getting off the ship at certain ports of call also had big backups. The cruise being over Spring Break meant over a thousand kids on board, so there was plenty of hallway running, (every) elevator button pushing, and loud areas. Definitely not a cruise for relaxation. -Debarkation – chaotic and slow-going. It seemed to me they called too many decks (for self-assisted departures) and Debarkation Zones (for checked luggage folks) at the same time, overwhelming the solitary forward staircase and elevators used for this purpose. This needs to be better-managed. -Overall – a great cruise with lots of dining choices, great drinks and service (with a few exceptions) and smooth embarkation process. Although there were some issues (the cabin odor being the main one), the weather was great all week, and we enjoyed the ports and sea days. I would definitely cruise the Carnival Breeze again, just not at Spring Break and not in cabin #8441. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This is our third carnival cruise and we really enjoyed the Vista! It’s a huge ship and even over spring break it did not feel nearly as crowded as other ships have. There are several pools/hot tubs and lots of places to be/activities to ... Read More
This is our third carnival cruise and we really enjoyed the Vista! It’s a huge ship and even over spring break it did not feel nearly as crowded as other ships have. There are several pools/hot tubs and lots of places to be/activities to do, so people are spread out. The staff are friendly, as always and the food was very good. We are in the main dining room every night but lots of people raved about the specialty dining. We enjoyed the cruise director, Matt, but Emma is still by far our favorite! Our kids really enjoyed the waterworks area (loved the slides) and the sky ride. We loved our room location. Quiet, close to the elevators/stairs and it was centrally located so easy to get everywhere! Overall there were 9 of us in our group, from age 5 to 65 and we all had a great time! I’d sail on the Vista again in a heartbeat, even over spring break. ;) Pros: Large ship with LOTS to do so it doesn’t feel as crowded as other ships. You don’t have to fight for deck chairs or space. The layout was nice and easy to get around. Friendly staff and really good food (Mongolian wok and of course, Guys are really good and included) Cons: The main showroom layout is poor. Makes it difficult to see the show from almost everywhere. (The shows were pretty good though from what we could see). Comedy club is too small for how popular it is but it is larger than other ships. The casino seemed to smell way more smoky than other ships. It was hard to even walk past it and we definitely weren’t going through it or in there (we would have had it but been so bad). We were actually surprised how bad it was since it’s a new ship but it was really awful. Embarking and disembarking are a nightmare but I think that’s more of an issue with the port than the ship. Port Galveston seemed to be far more disorganized but than Port Canaveral but once through to the cruise line it wasn’t bad getting on. Getting off was the same. It took hours for them to let us off, the port kept stopping the process. We just hung out on the lido deck though, not a big deal and not the vista’s fault but if you’re sailing from Galveston prepare for disorganization!! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We did this cruise via a casino coupon and we upgraded to a Junior suite from an inside room . Mistake but I will talk about this in my cabin review. We were two couples in our early 40's and my single friend in her early ... Read More
We did this cruise via a casino coupon and we upgraded to a Junior suite from an inside room . Mistake but I will talk about this in my cabin review. We were two couples in our early 40's and my single friend in her early 40's. The single friend was a first time cruiser and she loved it! The rest of us have been on 5 or 6 other cruises and thought it was up there in our favorite 2. We didn't go in with huge expectations and maybe that is why we had a blast. Embarkation was a breeze. Because I upgraded to a Suite we had priority boarding which meant a really short line compared to the huge line for everyone else. They will let your non suite friends get in the short line with you. We were there at noon and on the ship by 12:20. We all bought the drink package and thank god! We like to drink and some of them got cut off by midnight because they reached their 15 drink max. But hey, drinks get warm, you set them down, you may not like one, they still count so we were glad we bought it. Lunch on the Lido deck we all chose guys burgers and fries and they were all great. We hung out all day by the pool, in the casino, walking around etc. We missed going under the sky bridge in Tampa as we were in the casino (woopsy) . Anyway this boat rocked alot more than other cruise ships I have been on. Sometimes you noticed it, but I just tried to not look out the windows as we moved and I was generally fine. I am also very sensative to sea sickness and I never heard anyone else complain about it. We met for early 6pm dinner in the main dining room Destiny. We sat the 5 of us and 3 lovely ladies from Virginia. Our two waiters were great and our drinks and apps were on the table in 5 min. All our meals in the main dining room were very good! we did all pay $20 extra one night and got the filet and lobster and it did not disappoint. Day 2- arrive in Key west at noon, I really wished we got here sooner as it is very close to Tampa???? I was confused why the itinerary didnt allow more time at this port. Anyway we had a few cocktails on board and waited for the masses to fight their way off. We walked off at 12:50 ish and no lines. It rained all day in Key West but we did a little bar hopping and had fun anyway. Irish Kevins was for sure our favorite spot with the live singer/comedian guy. Got back on the little trolly thing around 3pm and went back to the ship. I will definately be back in Key West as it wasnt nearly enough time here. Got back went to casino (after we were like 12 miles out of course) and made it to the main dining room again for dinner. I say made it because it was a long day of drinking and some people wanted to nap! Food great again! Day 3- woke up around 8am, some ate breakfast (my husband and I don't really eat breakfast) Waited for most to get off the ship in CUBA, we got off around 11 am with absolutely no one in line. Customs took 30 seconds as did money exchange. Just to give an idea of how much you will need in Cuba, most of us took our $80 US and it was too much (for what we did). First of all DO NOT get suckered into buying an excursion if you want to just walk on your own!!!! Carnival will try and tell you that you have to check off "people to people" and book an excursion. We being in Cuba last year knew to check off "support the cuban people" option and you can totally just walk off. We walked to the main square accross from the ship and you will get a few locals asking if you want to pay $1 each and they will walk you around. We said no, but one guy seemed to never leave so what the heck we let him walk us around. He took us to a local John Lennon bar (dive bar but very cool!!) we all go cubra libras (rum and cokes) and were surprised it was $10 a drink!! We had one, felt very buzzed and moved on to the next stop. We walked through beautiful streets, saw the market, other squares, local people living life. It was great. Ernest Hemingway bar right near the port was our fave as it had live cuban music and here a round of drinks for 5 people was $7.50 US. Or $7.50 CUC. Totally cheap and fun here. We danced and walked around some more. We all tipped our guy $25 US and he was more than happy I am sure. Got back on the boat and only 2 made it to dinner.... Day 4 - Cozumel- We arrived at 12:45pm to port and we chose again to wait an hour before getting off to avoid the crowd. We had booked El Cid's for the twilight day pass as our ship was here 1pm to 9pm. No other day pass resorts were offering this late day pass. It was $65 each I think?? MAKE SURE you bring the printed piece of paper with your reservation or they will make you print it at the hotel. We had drinks, food (good food) towels, pool, snokeling, all included. It was a fun day! The shopping area right a the ship is awesome, I thought it was beautiful clean and lots to do. We were back on the ship around 6 as we are wimps of the sun and apparently cannot drink too much in the sun. Day 5- day at sea, usual activities, silly games by the pool, lots of food.... I dont really know as I was burnt from Mexico and did not hang around outside. We were mostly hanging around the casino area/American bar. Now 3 of us were smokers and even as a smoker I will say that this small one side of the bar and in the casino were always VERY smoky.. The air suckers in this area seemed to not work. This was also the area that they had the trivia games which we LOVED!! So much fun. But dang do something with the smoking vents! CASINO!!!!- Ok we hung out here ALOT!!! Like every day for a long time especially at night. We usually go to Greektown Casino in our hometown near Detroit. We usually hit at greektown pretty much every time we are there so we think it is the loosest best slots in the world lol . This casino was pretty close. It is small but it pays good!!! Every single time you sat down people were hitting like crazy! My husband probably won $1000 a day on slots easily. I couldnt believe it . I loved playing roulette with our group. I won one of the pong games in the casino where they called my name and I had to throw one out of ten ping pong balls into a gift bag with money on it. I won $75 it was fun. Overall the wait staff was fantastic, you always had a drink in your hand, we never waited once at any of the bars nor in the casino. Dinner service was fast, we never waited more than 10 min for dinner. I couldn't believe we were on the same cruise that people were ripping on the slow service and crappy food. We did not think this at all. Look , don't expect Ruth's Chris style meals, expect more like outback or Texas Road House lol. Then you will not be disappointed. This boat is small and therefore you won't get lost and everything is easy to get to. Having said that it is small and can sometimes feel like there is not much to do. There is not much craziness going on near the pool, which I like sometimes. We NEVER had a problem getting a chair, there were never any big drunks partying like it was springbreak. There was no more than 20 kids on the whole ship. It was just a great cool crowd of people. Cabin review is next.... Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We have cruised on this ship 10+ time and will return for another cruise in October. This is the smallest of the Carnival ships. We enjoy having a fewer number of guests, shorter lines and frankly, just less people everywhere. Sometimes on ... Read More
We have cruised on this ship 10+ time and will return for another cruise in October. This is the smallest of the Carnival ships. We enjoy having a fewer number of guests, shorter lines and frankly, just less people everywhere. Sometimes on the larger ships it seems like they increase the cabins but not the common areas. guests who sail on the Fantasy range from babies to seniors, but it always has a southern hospitality charm. Having sailed nearly 30 times, I can say with confidence that the crew of the Fantasy is second to none. They are open, friendly, and in the few short days you are on the ship, they become friends. The dining room staff always remembers what you doing and most of the time, my drink was sitting on the table when I arrived. The waiters around the pool are awesome. On the cruise last week, the waiter remembered that I ordered a bottle of water with every other drink-FROM THE LAST CRUISE IN DECEMBER! He just started bringing it to me again. On the Fantasy, you will not find rock climbing walls, roller coasters or trampolines. However, the children seem to be entertained and happy playing old school games as ship scavenger hunts. Believe it or not, they even have an adult one that is hugely popular. Our favorite places on the ship are the piano bar, the comedy club and wherever the live band is playing. We do frequent the shows as well. While Country Roads is not my favorite, they are all well done and great entertainment. Sometimes on the larger ships it seems like they increase the cabins but not the common areas. I have read several reviews where people have said this is a great ship for first time cruisers, and it is. However, you will also find diamond guests with over 400+ days who sail this ship out of choice. It truly is a ship with a personality and that personality is based largely on that time of year. During the winter months while school is in session, it is mostly adults taking a short break from parenting, holiday celebrations, and work. Summer months, the ship is all about families making the ship seem twice as crowded (4 people in cabins instead of 2). If you do a Journey cruise on the Fantasy, or any other ship, the clientele seems to be much older. I guess its difficult for working families to take 10 days or more but it is still tons of fun. Just different fun. During spring break, well, the ship "rocks" until 3am or so. I love all the ship seasons but you just have to be prepared mentally for what to expect. The dining room food is great and they will bring you one (or two) of everything on the menu if you ask. Embarkation is so easy. Mobile certainly has it down to a science. Debarkation is typical but not nearly as crazy because you simply have fewer guests leaving the ship. Finally, the Fantasy is a popular ship for people to sail back to back (and to back and to back). We met guests on the last cruise that had been on the ship for 2 months. Don't let the age of the ship (and yes, in places it shows) fool you, the Fantasy is consistently one of the top rated ships on customer service. Enjoy. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We picked this cruise because DW, niece and nephew had never been on a cruise and we wanted to make sure everyone would be ok locked in on the water. Embarkation went very smooth in spite of us being late (or maybe because of it, the ... Read More
We picked this cruise because DW, niece and nephew had never been on a cruise and we wanted to make sure everyone would be ok locked in on the water. Embarkation went very smooth in spite of us being late (or maybe because of it, the world may never know) we had 11:30-12:00 check in but didn't arrive till about 1:00 and walked right on. Well after going through security and all of course. Guy's burgers were real good and the kids liked the hotdogs from the deli. Lido buffet seemed to be lacking in my opinion. Oh the food was good just seemed to be less verity than what I remember from my last Carnival Fantasy cruise. This could be from 1) my failing memory, 2) there really is less verity or 3) a combination of the two. We had anytime dining in the Golden Olympian and it was great. No lines, no waiting either night. Sorry if I offended anyone wearing my jeans on elegant night but we had decided while we were packing that we would eat on Lido that night but DW decided otherwise on the night of. Good thing it was cool the morning we left home or I wouldn't have had any long pants. DW did keep saying "I just don't understand the allure and all the hype of cruising" but as we were sitting discussing what we were having for dinner last night she said "too bad we can't just go to lido and pick up something, I miss that ship" so I think she is hooked. I see more cruises in our future! We only saw the America Rocks show which was pretty good, but if you go to the Venetian Palace to see a show, try to avoid the back seats on deck 3. The overhang from deck 4 will block part of your view and you may not be able to see the entire performance. Not sure about deck 4. The kids, 5 and 13, loved the kids clubs and didn't want to leave. Even the very shy 13 year old made friends. Now the 5 yo can make friends with a signpost so we knew that wasn't going to be a problem. Most people say not to take a 3 day weekend cruise, it's just a party cruise with a bunch of rowdy drunks, but I didn't see a lot of that, just pax having a good time and mostly respectful and polite to each other. Overall great cruise I just don't think I will do another short one. Just to much work (packing, driving, unpacking, etc) for the amount of relaxation time. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
5 hours from Mobile so we drove down. Getting on and off the boat simple and easy in Mobile. It’s a nice big port with $70/5 day parking. Get a better ship in there it would be worth it. We chose this cruise because we wanted to take ... Read More
5 hours from Mobile so we drove down. Getting on and off the boat simple and easy in Mobile. It’s a nice big port with $70/5 day parking. Get a better ship in there it would be worth it. We chose this cruise because we wanted to take our 4 boys (10 to 17) and it was cheapest we found. The boys thought it was awesome, and for them it was, my wife and I not so much. But before I go further I do want to say that everyone was super nice and friendly. It was my first cruise and if it wasn’t for people I know that wouldn’t lie to me it would be my last. It was like staying in a musty ran down motel with excellent room service (if that makes sense), the king size bed was so uncomfortable that I was ready to take the frame out in the hall and lay the mattress on the floor. We paid for extra for an ocean view which landed us at the main back of the noisy ship but that was a WASTE because the window had not been cleaned in so long that you couldn’t be 100ft past the back of the ship. The food was ok the best was Guy Fieri burgers and the Blue Iguana was great. We ate lunch there and dined at ships restaurant it was ok fancy food cooked up and served with a smile but lacked variety and flavor I thought. And believe me I tried everything 6 people 4 being teenage boys can put some food away and I tried everything that we ordered. The entertainment was ok I enjoyed name that song, the live music at the bar and marriage game was halirious. Kevin wasss ssso over the top but he wassss funny I thought (If you know him you’ll get that). The shows were ok except for the Country Roads show it was terrible I thought. The ports were ok, Progreso that shops were in your face almost. Cozumel the boys swam with the nurse sharks and stingrays they had fun but they had never done anything like that but it’s was like a petting zoo in the ocean where you can touch it if your fast enough to corner it. I’ve found out that I just can’t afford to take 6 ppl on a cruise. I’ll find a resort, condo, time share or something else because the 5 days on the boat with the excursion was over 6K. I just read over this... Lol I sound like a hateful old man but one of the easiest going guys I know. I just excepted more and better Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
This was a last minute choice, because I had business in NOLA the following week, and I’m glad we did. Faster to the Fun is worth the extra cost, if you can get a slot! Embarkation was organized and painless, our rooms were ready when ... Read More
This was a last minute choice, because I had business in NOLA the following week, and I’m glad we did. Faster to the Fun is worth the extra cost, if you can get a slot! Embarkation was organized and painless, our rooms were ready when we boarded, just drop our stuff off and go explore. We make our own fun in the ports, finding taxis and buses to take us to snorkeling spots and beaches...with a little research we spend more time with the locals and fell like we’ve experienced the place. The food and service in the dining rooms, restaurants, and lounges is top notch. We ate at the Steakhouse twice, so good! That said, Carnival, why can’t you do anything about the lines at the Lido buffet? I’ve never seen lines like that on any other cruise line. Breakfast would have been better if I could have gotten to the eggs in less than 20 minutes. We usually book inside rooms, and this one was comfy enough. There was some kind of weird noise some nights, though, like someone was using a hydraulic punch. We couldn’t figure it out, and none of our neighbors we asked noticed it. Staff were very professional and did a great job taking care of us. One last comment for the casino: there are tables and machines marked no-smoking, and that’s a fair enough compromise for smokers and non-smokers to share the space. It’s not a compromise if you don’t try to enforce it; it’s an insult when a member of the staff walks up to a smoker sitting at a non-smoking machine and hands her an ash tray. Don’t pretend to have a policy, if you’re saying it doesn’t matter then just don’t have one. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
This is our fifth year cruising over Spring Break. Our kids are grown so it’s just us, but there are always lots of kids onboard over Spring Break. We park in the Fulton Place Garage and the construction on the Convention Center side ... Read More
This is our fifth year cruising over Spring Break. Our kids are grown so it’s just us, but there are always lots of kids onboard over Spring Break. We park in the Fulton Place Garage and the construction on the Convention Center side caused us a nearly two hour delay in parking! Not sure how long the construction will be going on. Call first if you plan to park here. After finally parking and shuttling to the port, we were late. The good thing about being late is that you move right along. We never sat down. Through check-in, security, and up the ramp onto the ship. Then up the elevator to Deck 11 to our first-ever balcony. I sat down and thought it would be good to take a picture of us on the balcony. That’s when I realized I had left my backpack in the x-ray machine. I grabbed my passport and RAN. It was now after 3:00 and at 4:00 the ship pulls out. The people inside were very nice but also very professional. They asked me to identify it, then describe the contents. Once they were satisfied they directed me to a desk where I signed for it and ran back to the ship! Crisis averted! We sailed on the Dream in 2017 so we recognized a lot of the traffic patterns. We are early risers and head to the Serenity area on the Sky deck and secure chairs with pads on the sea days to sun and read. It’s quiet there. Our cabin was 11273. It was convenient but there was a slamming door somewhere and it would wake us up. It seemed to slam a lot at 3:00 a.m. I sleep with earplugs and one night the vibration of the wall woke me up. I probably should have complained, but I didn’t. The cabin was plenty spacious for two and the couch and sit-under were both nice features. We did not use the balcony much. I would do a balcony again for the sunlight but it wasn’t as much of an upgrade as I imagined. We ate in the dining room maybe four times. It was good. Service was good too. We had 6:00 early dining and next time we may opt for anytime dining. On elegant nights we skipped it and hit the Lido, which was good. One day we stayed ashore until 5:30 so we grabbed a burger and it was remarkably good. The shows were as we remembered. The 80’s show was SO GOOD. As was the Motown show. Skip Flick. We walked out. Many did. Gary the Cruise Director did a good job of keeping you informed but not annoying you. Service everywhere was excellent. Towel animals to the max! Especially on Friday morning. Ports were busy with Spring Break. Montego Bay – we grabbed a taxi (bus) to Doctor’s Cave Beach. Maybe $7 each. Once there it was $6 each to get in $6 each for a chair and $6 for an umbrella = $30. Make sure you take a lot of $1 bills to tip people. No one seems to have any change. We got there early and stayed as long as we could. Lunch right there was very good. Grand Cayman – I don’t remember tendering here but we did this time. There were plenty of water taxis and they moved quickly. We were planning to go to the public beach but the driver persuaded us to try Royal Palms. It was maybe $2 each to get in, but then it started. $15 for an umbrella. $12 each for chairs. And then all the food prices are in Cayman dollars, so add 25%. Lunch was $60 US. The beach was beautiful and water as clear as it gets but this was expensive compared to the free public beach with local guy renting chairs cheap and the liquor store across the road. Next time we will go there again. Finally Cozumel – we couldn’t get off the ship until 10:00. So by the time we taxied to Paradise Beach, it was pretty full. We did find chairs and it’s only $3 each so we LOVE it there. There were seven cruise ships in port and the lunch service was SLOW. But in the afternoon it thinned out and we moved around and enjoyed the pool and the beach. We will be back next year. What can you say? For less than the cost of a condo in Florida for the week, we wake up each day in a different country! I’ve already booked Carnival for Spring Break 2020. We’ve done Norwegian, Royal Caribbean and Carnival and shocked even ourselves that we like Carnival the best. It seems to be the best value. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We booked this cruise for Our 16th anniversary. We have never taken “real” vacation with just the two of us as most of our time off has been camping with our kids. Overall I would not be opposed to taking another cruise maybe in a ... Read More
We booked this cruise for Our 16th anniversary. We have never taken “real” vacation with just the two of us as most of our time off has been camping with our kids. Overall I would not be opposed to taking another cruise maybe in a couple years. Good: 1. The staff on board was excellent. Our room steward Arthar. Corina served us at both the pool and in the main dining hall on several occasions and she was awesome. Oscar and Mark at Alchemy bar were great 2. La Cocina Italian restaurant 3. Gigi’s Asian restaurant Bad: 1. The sushi bar was edible but I would not go back. We did have a cooked sea bass that my wife raved about. 2. Most of the mixed drinks at the bars were supper sweet, weak, not very good. Go to Alchemy 3. The dinning hall was ok but nothing to rave about Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
Mat, the cruise director, was phenomenal. He is so full of energy and so positive. He was the perfect person to keep the ship going. The adults in our group enjoyed the casino a lot (someone please win our money back). We had so many ... Read More
Mat, the cruise director, was phenomenal. He is so full of energy and so positive. He was the perfect person to keep the ship going. The adults in our group enjoyed the casino a lot (someone please win our money back). We had so many people that talked and laughed with us. I could list something special about each of them, but that would take all day. I do want to mention some of the names of the casino staff that were absolutely amazing. Kyro, Rochelle, Emily and the rest of the pit bosses were fabulous. The dealers, Yuri, Anna, Dorothy, Prudence, Ilya, Tames, Malcolm and Edward are all AWESOME. They made us laugh even while taking our money. The dining was very VERY good. Our team was Lemsem "Sam" and Menzi made each night special. They made our youngest nephew Cooper feel special. I mentioned Anita, our steward, already, but the people behind the scenes are great. She always remembered our names and she always had a smile waiting for us. To say we had a great trip is an understatement. WE HAD AN AMAZING TRIP. I can't wait for the next cruise!! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
I have sailed with carnival Previously on the Triumph for a 4 day cruise. This ship was extremely similar and I enjoyed it just as much if not more. I did love the serenity deck, but it also being the deck of camp ocean ( for kids) was ... Read More
I have sailed with carnival Previously on the Triumph for a 4 day cruise. This ship was extremely similar and I enjoyed it just as much if not more. I did love the serenity deck, but it also being the deck of camp ocean ( for kids) was a little confusing. Really enjoyed speciality meal and the steak house and of course, Guys burger. Main restaurant food was iffy . Cruise director was great and fun. Casino was good and never too crowded. Placed third in the slot tournament so that was fun. Our balcony room was fun and nice to have an outside area to sit and watch the ocean. So much to do and never enough time to do it. We loved our cabin steward. We had a great cruise , a great ship and all staff we encountered were very accommodating! Will definitely Sail again with carnival Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
I've sailed many different Carnival ships, both new and old. I was pretty shocked at the condition of the ship, which is less than 10 years old. Whatever happened to ongoing maintenance? Our cabin had lots of dents and scratches. ... Read More
I've sailed many different Carnival ships, both new and old. I was pretty shocked at the condition of the ship, which is less than 10 years old. Whatever happened to ongoing maintenance? Our cabin had lots of dents and scratches. A couple of the lamps sticking out of the wall were loose. Our fiberglass shower had a huge crack in it. There were hundreds of tiles missing at the main pool. On to the good: The itinerary was great. We didn't miss Mazatlan and really enjoyed our overnight in Puerto Vallarta. Food is always good on Carnival and this cruise did not disappoint. Service in the dining room was not good. Very inconsistent spacing with our courses. It seemed like the servers were far too preoccupied with getting our kids food out early. On at least 4 nights, we had to leave the dining room because the next seating was about to happen. We had to rush through dessert and coffee was ordered but forgotten on multiple occasions. We are accustomed to fantastic, efficient service on Carnival and were very disappointed. Entertainment was great. We really enjoyed the main shows as well as the comedians. The cruise director, Lee, was great. Very visible and personable. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We joined two other couples with whom we were stationed in the military 20+ years ago for a reunion cruise. We knew it was during Spring Break so we expected lots of children, which was the case. It wasn’t too much problem until late ... Read More
We joined two other couples with whom we were stationed in the military 20+ years ago for a reunion cruise. We knew it was during Spring Break so we expected lots of children, which was the case. It wasn’t too much problem until late night (late for us, like 10:00 pm!), when the teenagers were running through the ship. However, it really wasn’t too intrusive. The embarkation was very smooth. We were on the ship smoothly and our cabin was ready as promised at 1:30. Conversely, the disembarkation was a cluster. Our ship arrived two hours late, and we waited hours to leave the ship. Our bags were in a large room, sorted by zones, but it appeared everyone disembarked at the same time. It was very disorganized. We stayed at the Radisson the night prior to our cruise and utilized their parking service. I would advise everyone to avoid this service due to the incredible rudeness and poor organization at disembarkation. The gentleman driving the scooter (perhaps due to a foot injury) was particularly rude. The food on the cruise was just ok. The service and food has certainly declined in the past few years but is what we expected. The food was plentiful, of course, with plenty of different venues. The highlight of the cruise was the cruise director, Mikey. We enjoyed having him as our cruise director on the Fantasy last year and we feel he is the best cruise director we’ve ever had. It is worth following him and booking the cruise on which he is the cruise director; he’s that good! Overall, it was a good cruise! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We had some time off for spring break. There were four of us all adults who were out of school for the week and in need of some relaxation and vitamin sea. We picked this cruise for the 8 days and haven't been to any of these ports ... Read More
We had some time off for spring break. There were four of us all adults who were out of school for the week and in need of some relaxation and vitamin sea. We picked this cruise for the 8 days and haven't been to any of these ports before. I personally think that vacations are what you make of them. They can be as busy as you choose or as relaxing as you choose. No not everything will always be perfect but if you let people or things stress you out then shame on you, it defeats the purpose of vacationing. This cruise was absolutely AMAZING. We have never been on the Sunshine before and we loved the different layout than those ships we've been on in the past. We loved how they had all the food places in the different areas of the ship. We always love the DELI, and GUYS burgers did not dissapoint. We didn't try the italian or wok place except for breakfast so cannot comment on that. They had food/snacks in the Havana Bar and by the Ocean plaza that were never as busy as the lido buffet. Food in the dining room this cruise was superb. Every single night we each tried multiple appetizers or entrees and loved them all.(oops not ALL there was one pasta dish that I didn't like the sauce of) Some appetizers we liked we ordered seconds or thirds of and had no problem getting them served. Lobster night and filet mignon nights were delish, prime rib was done perfectly, in the past we've had problems with steaks or lobster being too done but not this time. Enjoyed a good variety of desserts with baked Alaska being my fave. We did have my time dining every night and it went fairly smooth. We had to wait for a few minutes each night but that wasn't a problem, we just signed in online & it texted when our table was ready so we'd have a drink at the Red Frog Pub or Alchemy Martini Bar. Unfortunately not the same wait staff each night but we still had pretty good service. We also did do breakfast in the dining room most days and the food/staff were just as good early morning. I loved the steak & eggs(yes same filet mignon at dinner) and the brunch mac & cheese was almost as good as Noodles & Company. We definitely put the midnight pizza bar to the test. Hit it all but one night after casino, shows, or piano bar and it was good and very very busy(so take your patience with you). The cruise director MIKEY is awesome. I think he was the best we've seen. Always energetic and friendly. Don't miss the 80's trivia in the atrium bar IT WAS A BLAST. Get seats to enjoy the entertainment and laughs :) His assistant Nicky from England was fun and top notch as well. We did play trivia throughout the week and the hosts were fun and witty. Music around the ship was plentiful and enjoyed by all. We loved Cassidy Rae Wilson in the Piano Bar. It was her last week working so she is back to Australia until the fall, but we hope to cruise with her again. The gentleman that plays on the stairwell outside of the sports bar, pixels photo area, and above atrium bar was so good. I feel bad that I forget his name but he played tunes that everyone enjoyed, oldies thru current definitely a good singer. The duet of Young Patches were pretty good as well they played through different areas of the ship. They are from Cali and definitely look hipster :) RB & The Sunshine Band always had good tunes as well. Their 80s night was great!! Don't miss the Red Frog Bar on this ship . 1/2 price happy hour every day with fish bowls and other special drinks. They have karaoke, shuffleboard and foosball in the back as well. The Punchliner Comedy Club had some good talent for sure. Missed one night but they sure did put smiles on our faces. ADULT SERENITY AREA ALL I CAN SAY IS WOW !! This is the best from our 13 cruises. We've been on Carnival and 2 RCCL and this was just so relaxing and had so much room and on three decks. LOVED IT :) Aruba: what a beautiful place. We spent the day at MooMba Beach, Aruba and it did not disappoint. We changed clothes at the Holiday Inn and very much enjoyed this port. We had booked on our own a sunset sail with The Jolly Pirate and had an amazing time on that 5:30-7:30pm excursion. It was good for adults as well as the several families aboard seemed to have a good time. Curacao: another beautiful place. We spent the afternoon at the Renaissance hotel right at the port. It has two infinity pools and a small beach. It was nice, quiet and very relaxing. Absolutely breath taking and not very crowded at all. You can get a day pass at the resort by just walking up. Amber Cove Dominican: we had heard there were lazy rivers, pools, zip lining, volleyball etc..... right at the pier so we did not make any plans for this day. We slept in, ate breakfast and spent a few hours here. They have $10 buckets of beer and lots of fun stuff to do. You can zip line all day for $20/person. Everyone we saw here seemed to be enjoying themselves. We will definitely do this again. The other couple we were with tried to get a taxi to the beach but it was on the other side of the island and they wanted $60 each way for a taxi, needless to say they enjoyed the area right at the port. PS) As you made read in other reviews from this week DISEMBARKING was not fun. There were delays and our ship arrived late plus we had to clear customs. Lots of people were not off the ship till 10:30 or later and people were pissed.......... This is why cruise lines suggest you fly out in the afternoon in case of issues. Lots of people missed flights etc..... sad for those who had this happen but it is what it is and hopefully everyone made it home safely Read Less
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