Carnival Cruises--brainwashing you with the word FUN until you're convinced you might be having it!!
This was our first cruise, and we couldn't have been more excited to see the beautiful ports -- Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay and Nassau. We booked over $200 worth of excursions on Grand Turk and Half Moon, and decided to leave the last day for ourselves. We flew to Miami and stopped for lunch before embarkation. There in the pub, we received an email (less than 2 hours before scheduled departure) that there was "a problem with the stern thruster" and because of this problem, we were no longer going to Grand Turk OR Half Moon Cay...to be replaced with KEY WEST and FREEPORT (north of Miami even!). This was a huge bummer and all they offered was $50 credit per person which went right back into their pockets. They refunded our excursions and we rebooked one for Freeport, hoping it wouldn't be too freezing to snorkel. They delayed our departure out of Miami from 4pm until after 7:30 pm, claiming they were "taking on fresh water", which we quickly learned from someone in the know that Carnival doesn't even do. The casino stayed closed for hours, the entire show schedule was running behind by over an hour...not the first night we'd hoped for. Key West SUCKS and all they try to do is sell you dumb TANZANITE jewelry. Key West was FREEEEEEEEZING but they did not care, stern thruster blah blah blah. Freeport was only good because we kept our excursion and did have a good time snorkeling. If not for that, we would have been bored all day walking in a tiny circle because there's nowhere to go on Freeport except Senor Frogs (which WAS fun for the last hour). Nassau was beautiful, we had no idea we had to basically buy a ticket to get anywhere but we figured it out and had a great day.
The trip wasn't a bust, but it was NOT what we paid for...and the worst part is, we found out from many sources that the "stern thrusters" had been broken for almost 3 cruises in a row, but of course they chose to tell us when it was too late to cancel. Thanks, Carnival. Why would you pay to fix a ship you're going to GUT in 3 weeks????? Who cares if the paying customer loses out as long as you can squeeze a few more cruises out of a ship being held together with duct tape and glue??
Again, we are outgoing people who can make the best of any situation so we did of course enjoy ourselves, but I would not recommend this company to anyone. They are too unpredictable...for every good review there are probably 3 unsatisfactory ones right behind it. Good luck, Sunshine.