Sail Date: April 2016
This was actually two cruises back to back. The first being 11 days from New Orleans to San Juan and the second being 10 days from San Juan to Jacksonville, Fl. Upon reaching Jacksonville, we have now sailed 15 times with Carnival. We ... Read More
This was actually two cruises back to back. The first being 11 days from New Orleans to San Juan and the second being 10 days from San Juan to Jacksonville, Fl. Upon reaching Jacksonville, we have now sailed 15 times with Carnival. We had never sailed from New Orleans and had never sailed on the Elation. We took this 'Journey Cruise' because of the itinerary with several ports we'd never been to. Embarkation was fairly smooth. At our muster drill, we had our first experience with the most irritating Cruise Director we ever had. The muster drill drug on much longer than any we've ever participated in before. Hennie, the CD, has multiple personalities that he voices throughout the drill...giving the directions in crazy accents. We were to discover that his 'voices' would continue throughout the entire 21 days. Following the muster drill, we went up on deck to find a good seat to watch the sail away. We waited and waited and waited, not knowing why we weren't leaving. Finally, two hours into the wait, the CD comes over the PA and tells that we're delayed because 'they're still loading food'. We actually sailed 2 1/2 hours late. We've never experienced a late departure like that. And I find it hard to believe that we were delayed because they were still loading supplies. Carnival has that down to a science. Due to a medical emergency that required diverting the ship to Cozumel. As we were already 2 1/2 hours behind, we arrived at our first port 4 1/2 hours late. The itinerary for the cruise was very nice and we discovered several spots that we want to travel back to...but not on the Elation. We had YTD and our first experience in the dining room was very disappointing. Service was very slow and disorganized. We found the food to be pretty mediocre. In fact, overall, the food was disappointing on this trip. Certainly not up to the level that we've experienced in the past with Carnival. As Platinum members, we attended the VIFP cocktail party..which has been whittled down to 45 minutes. This was vastly different than those we've attended in the past. It was very difficult to get a drink. The waiters would sail past a table full of people with their trays and not stop. The snacks offered were nasty sushi. One example of their poor organization is that prior to the cruise, someone from Carnival came onto the CC Roll call and announced that Carnival was now hosting M & Gs on the ships. We were instructed as to how to sign up for it so they would know how many people to expect and they would announce the time and location in the Fun Times on board. We followed their directions. We did, indeed, see the announcement and a large group of us showed up to the specified lounge and found 3 pitchers of ice water for refreshments..and not a soul from Carnival. Thanks to one of the young men in CC group who got on his computer and started trying to contact someone, they did reschedule it as a 'Farewell' meeting and provided some juice, tea and a tray of cookies. Hennie the Cruise director and one officer did attend for a few minutes. The main shows were not up to par, either. I don't know if it's the 'Journey Cruise' format, or what, but we did not enjoy them and after a try or two, did not attend them. We did enjoy the assortment of comics that came on to perform in the Punchliner lounge. We caught as many of their shows as we could. We had an outstanding room steward, Rosella, and can't say enough good about her. We really appreciated all she did for us. Once we arrived in Jacksonville, Fl, the debarkation process was horrible. As Platinum passengers using the easy debarkation method, we were directed to the theater to wait for our luggage number to be called. We had #3. We all sat in that theater for hours waiting for information. The PA announcements were not being directed into the theater and we scarcely saw a crew member that could relay information. It was almost noon before we were allowed off the ship after docking at 8:30 AM. I will say that we loved the itinerary and appreciate all the wonderfully friendly crew members on board. However, this trip left us very disappointed in Carnival and not interested in sailing on the Elation, again. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2015
We are very seasoned cruisers and have done 15 on Carnival and this was actually our second time on the Elation. In the past our room steward was always there to greet us and to see if we needed any thing. Several of our group never even ... Read More
We are very seasoned cruisers and have done 15 on Carnival and this was actually our second time on the Elation. In the past our room steward was always there to greet us and to see if we needed any thing. Several of our group never even saw their room steward until the third day. We have enjoyed doing the "Our Time Dining" in the past, but on this ship we waited over an 1 1/2 hours one night and 45 minutes the second night to be seated. Two of the nights our waiters were rude and did not interact with us or provide the service we have always received in the past from Carnival. Carnival now offers 3 different internet packages, that provides reasonable charges for social media. You can instant message through Facebook which we thought was great (if it had worked). For only $70 you received full service with email and unlimited usage that was suppose to be 3 times faster than the 2 cheaper packages. I am a real estate broker and was negotiating 2 sales contract at the time of our departure. My husband owns a business and needed to check his emails daily as well. It was totally worthless. I tried 3 different times one day and spent over 3 hours trying to respond to a contract on my email and kept getting knocked off the system or it just was so slow it would time out. I got up one morning at 5:30 and went to the internet cafe to try and it worked great at that time of day. We could not do our airline check in because we never could get on it the last day. To say the least this was the worst service all around we have ever had on a boat. We are booked for another cruise with Carnival in February and if we have the same experience we will may look into other cruise lines. They have eliminated the lobster unless you are on 7 days or longer, no chocolate on the pillows at night, no ice in your rooms any longer, no baskets with samples in the bathrooms, no carnival glasses, no live musicians at the shows and worthless internet on t his ship. What can I say. If you have never been on a cruise you wouldn't know the difference, but we did!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2015
Although the Elation is an older ship, one could not tell from the asthetics or decor on board. We booked this cruise through carnival on one of their 48hr flash sale emails for prior guest and we were not disappointed! As always we ... Read More
Although the Elation is an older ship, one could not tell from the asthetics or decor on board. We booked this cruise through carnival on one of their 48hr flash sale emails for prior guest and we were not disappointed! As always we completed our online check in ahead of time as to avoid the lines at the port. We spent the night in New Orleans prior to cruise instead of driving in the day of which was the best option as we were not wore out or cranky upon embarkation. I must say that the port of New Orleans embarkation process is a very smooth running machine compared to that of galveston. We arrived at the port dropped our luggage and parked and got in line at 11:30 dreading the wait.. Shockingly security screening (metal detectors, bag check, drink check, etc.) took us less than 5 minutes!!! We walked around the corner saw the line and swore in several languages as we saw the first hint at lines. My wife noticed a sign that read for those that had online registered that only had maybe 15-20 families in it so we got in line and waited our turn. The line moved fast including taking our pictures and receiving our keys and the long walk up the gang way and the initial GONG as your card is swiped and we were greeted with a smile took less than 20 minutes!!! By 11:55 we had deposited our carry on luggage to our stateroom which was prepared and immaculate daily (more in that later Francisco and his staff are amazing). With everyone else still in line and plenty of time "explore" we immediately made our way to the atrium and purchased our cheers program. If your drink 5-6 drinks a day the program pays for its self it is the shock factor paying up front that gets to most people. We grabbed our first drink which we always grab something fruity to celebrate and toast the start of vacation and let the relaxation begin! Through out the cruise we encountered many wonderful staff members that we would love to mention by name but as this is already running long I wouldn't have room but suffice it to say we did not have on bad expirience or altercation while in this trip everyone seemed eager to cater to and treat you as family. The casino bar staff is outstanding that is where we could congregate for most of our drinks as they knew us by name knew our order and they were always good and strong! The casino staff itself including the manager and hosts were very gracious as well as we had the cheers program by the end of the 2nd day we had reached the required points for the free drinks but it was moot as we had cheers so they decided to give us 2 steak house selection dinners and a bottle of wine ($100 value) which was awesome. As we play a lot a few days later my wife comes in from a shopping adventure to find chocolate covered strawberries complements of the casino ( another nice touch). We had selected anytime dining for this cruise which gave us the freedom to eat at our leisure and not miss any stage productions. All of the staff in the main dining room were outstanding food was delicious as always and we never wanted or waited for anything. Entertainment on board was good but wished there was more the shows were amazing however we cruised the magic there were different shows every night here they rotated the same shows all week. The comdians were hilarious and we did miss not having a magician or mentalist. Another absolute shocker was the WHITEOUT PARTY absolutly had a blast at the onboard rave thrown by the DJ. Most people rave how their steward is always there like a butler, Francisco and his staff adhered to the old rule of leave your mark but leave no traces extremely clean room always fresh and plentiful towels and they were a phone call away but they did not longer waiting for someone to ambush I have seen on other ships. We didn't plan excursions in either port as we had been here before deciding to stay aboard in progreso to enjoy the ship and in cozumel explore on our own. Debarkation was as painless as embarkation we took the easy route luggage out the night before leisure breakfast at the lido buffet hung out until our number was called them down the terminal and through the line from when our number was called until we hit pavement took a total of maybe 30 minutes. As stated above this ship maybe a little older but her staff keeps her young and fresh. One of the best experiences we have had cruise wise and will be sailing her again soon!!! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2015
I want to first start this review by letting you know a little about myself and my previous experience cruising. I am a regional sales manager so I travel alot in and out of hotels and visit some very nice resorts. This was my 9th cruise ... Read More
I want to first start this review by letting you know a little about myself and my previous experience cruising. I am a regional sales manager so I travel alot in and out of hotels and visit some very nice resorts. This was my 9th cruise and I was a little weary because my family and I hadn't been on a cruise in at least eight years. I was very concerned after reading all of the reviews that the quality had went down. First off if you have never cruised before cruising isn't for everyone if you are the type of person that can't sit still and has to be constantly entertained you may get bored on a cruise. I enjoy the relaxed slow down the days at sea are my favorite I don't want to use a phone no texts no emails no conference calls awesome. That being said if you want to be lazy sleep in take naps eat great food and enjoy the occasional port than you will love a cruise. I went with my wife of twenty years and my 13 year old son and my mother. We all had a blast the crew was very friendly and accommodating and especially nice to my elderly mother. The overall age on this cruise was 50 and below which was a little different than cruises we have taken in the past. I spoke with many other passengers and everyone seemed to be really enjoying the cruise. The dining room food was very good the deserts were awesome. The food on the buffets top side were also good not as good as the dining room food but very good. As far as cleanliness I thought the ship overall was very clean our room was nice and clean the carpets and facilities overall were clean. The exterior of the ship is showing wear and needs to be repainted and the windows on the ship were dirty at times not filthy. Some of the newer ships have a cleaning system which sprays off the windows daily this ship does not. The only major changes that I noticed is the dining room service is not what it was our waiter was very nice and we were served promptly but you may have to wait a little while for refills on tea and water. They could use more help in the dining room. The cabin stewart was a good as we have ever had. We spent more on this cruise than previous cruises but it wasn't due to anything costing any more mainly because we did nicer excursions. Progresso was nice and real mexico not like Cozumel which is basically a cruise port. Expect to be approached in Progresso the people will try to sell you stuff but if you ignore or say your not interested they will leave you alone. We only went to one show it was pretty good just singing and dancing it was a little to loud for my group but was well performed. In Progresso they have a bus that will take you down town and if you want to go to the beach they have a 35 dollar per person all inclusive beach and food and drink not sure what they charge on Carnival but I am sure it is much cheaper. We went in Cozumel for the dolphin swim and ride cost 125 per person it was great but this is also something you could go do on your own because it is a park and I am sure the price would be much less expect to pay a lot for pictures we spent 100. I think that sums it up great trip we would definitely take this cruise again. Thanks and happy cruising. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2015
This was a our annual mid year family vacation. We love cruising and have only ever cruised with Carnival. That has now changed. I will start with the general info. The ship itself didn't have the cheesy decor most of their ships ... Read More
This was a our annual mid year family vacation. We love cruising and have only ever cruised with Carnival. That has now changed. I will start with the general info. The ship itself didn't have the cheesy decor most of their ships have, actually it was different and somewhat pretty. It was clean but it was worn in a lot of places. The service wasn't very good. The employees, for the most part, were unhappy and it showed more often than not. It almost seemed like we were a burden to them. There were a few who were good at their job and seemed happy (dining room at dinner only), there were a couple who you could tell were only smiling because they had to to get tipped(bars and housekeeping), and there were many who showed obvious disdain for having to serve you (bars, guest service, pool area). The food quality has diminished over the years. The food options were nil around the ship, there was even one night about 9PM I was unable to find any food unless I wanted pizza or a sandwich from the grill (both with lines). The website said there was sushi on board, but we were told once we boarded they no longer have it on this ship. The entertainment options were minimal. There was only one 'show' and the rest were trivia, games and a couple of nights of comedy. This 'show' was the same one we saw last year while traveling on the Sunshine. Coming on and off the ship was a breeze so that was nice. The excursion we took in Cozumel was just OK. We took a similar one a few years ago and it was great, this one was uneventful, nothing to write home about. Forget trying to go to Progreso. The people will not allow you to walk by their tent/store without trying to sell you something 'for almost free' (their words). I know it is a poor area but it isn't worth the hassle so we immediately turned around and went back to the port area. They aren't so bad there and their drinks are a heck of a lot less expensive than any where else. BUT, the biggest problem we had with this cruise was with the way security handled an incident which happened on the first day. My husband left cash, a special coin given to him by his children for father's day and a money clip (all together) laying on the dresser when we went to breakfast. My husband noticed it was gone when we got back later that morning but he thought I had put it in the safe when in fact I did not. We turned the room upside down looking for it before going to guest services to report the items missing from the room, hoping we had just thrown it in a drawer or something. They handled it reasonably well, without expression or apology, but methodical procedure for documenting the incident. We never accused anyone of taking the items from our room, only stated what was missing. They said they would have security contact us when we returned from our excursion. They did do as said and my husband met them in the atrium to discuss. The first person he met with was okay and told him they would have to have him fill out some paperwork and search our room, but he said someone else would come and do all of that. So, another man arrived and asked some questions, including if we had other rooms. We did have another room. He said they would have to search both rooms. He had no problem with that. They went to our kids' room first since it was on the same level as the atrium. The conversation spiraled out of control with the security officer practically accusing, but definitely implying, that my husband got drunk and lost the items, or our children took them from our room. He also wanted him to complete a form telling how much money he brought on board, how much he had spent, what he spent it on, etc. That did not set well with my husband and he told him he would not provide that information because it had nothing to do with the missing items. Let's just say it went from bad to worse as it moved back out to the atrium from our kids' room. Our intent was to really just let Carnival know items were missing from the room so they could keep an eye on personnel with access to our room. We never expected to get the money back but did hope to at least get the coin back since it had sentimental value. My husband did approach our steward and tell him the items were missing. He appeared to know nothing about it. We don't want to think he did it because he didn't seem to be the type, but one never knows these days. We are business owners and if a customer of ours has an issue we hope they would let us know so we can keep an eye on things, seek to improve, make amends, etc, in order to keep the customer. Carnival sent a letter to the stateroom the next day and said the matter was closed, probably because my husband told the security officer to forget it (in a few choice words). They totally handled the situation inappropriately. If we could have finished the cruise without spending another dime with them we would have, but it just wasn't feasible since it was only day two of the cruise.I am very disappointed in the way they handled this. My husband admits he also could have handled it better, but he felt like they were calling him a liar, thief and troublemaker. I am the more level headed of the two, but I don't know that I would have handled it any differently. The officer may have been doing the investigation per procedure, as he said, but his condescending attitude (and words) and body language showed and meant more than the procedural words coming out of his mouth. On a good note, if you are already booked on this ship try and get Ram as your headwaiter, early seating Imagination dining room. He's a great guy. And, we had some great dinner guests at our table. I hope your future cruise will be better than ours. Sad to say we will never cruise with them again, for several reasons, but this was the straw that broke the camel's back. I'm told by many Celebrity is the way to go :) Happy Cruisin! Read Less
Carnival Elation Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.0
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 5.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.5 3.9
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 5.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.5 4.0
Rates N/A 4.4

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