I just want to express my disappointment regarding our recent trip cruising with Carnival on the Splendor from LA down along the Mexican Rivera on Sunday 6th Jan 2013. I was travelling with my husband on this cruise and having been on many cruises before (5 in total) we were really looking forward to travelling with Carnival for the first time.
I did receive an email prior to boarding the ship explaining the recent issues with the boat and that our itinerary of the ship will change so that the repairs can be done in Puerto Vallarta.
Once the delay was announced on Friday morning that the ship would be arriving in Long Beach on Monday morning, passengers were given the option of disembarking if they had particular travel plans that required arrival in Long Beach at the previously advertised time. Having waited up the night before and noticed the ship hadn't of set sail when we were supposed to, we would have appreciated being told then so appropriate arrangements could've been made that night. Instead, like many others, we were in lines all day on Friday waiting to speak to a customer service rep. We were advised like everyone else to wait in our stateroom and we would receive a call letting us know what the arrangements were. Hours went by and still no call. Another trip down to the purses desk and another few hours later of waiting in a line, we were advised we would disembark the ship between 4 -- 5 pm and to wait for an announcement. After the announcement was made we did disembark at around 5pm but still with no idea as to where we were going. This whole process was very unorganized and the staff members were quite rude about it all. The stress and the waiting around for the day meant we missed a whole day of vacation on the Friday 11th Jan. We were then transported to the Krystal resort where nobody seemed to know details about charter flights. We were told to check back with the front desk at 9pm, but there was no news. A letter from Carnival was slipped under our door sometime after midnight, which advised us to be ready to go at 4pm on Saturday afternoon as a charter was booked to leave at 6pm and arrive in LA at 7:10pm. After receiving this information, I booked accommodation in LA for the Saturday night for my husband and myself in which I should be reimbursed for.
Krystal's hotel is really not a nice place to stay in. There were bed bugs in the room and we were kept up the whole night by the bunch on drunk backpackers having a party outside our room. Slamming doors, running around etc. We did at one stage feel very unsafe.
When checking out at 2pm on the Saturday, we heard a rumour that the 6pm flight had been delayed then soon were told it had been cancelled. We also heard that some other passengers had been put up at the Hilton and had already left that morning on a charter flight back to LA. Unfortunately there was no representative from Carnival to assist us and many passengers were quite stressed, not knowing what was happening. Luckily one of the passengers took the initiative and contacted Carnival by phone on everyone's behalf as he was the only one whose cell phone worked. Having come from Australia, we weren't able to use ours and without the fellow passenger, we would have been stuck. We were seeking information on how we would be getting back to LA to catch our flight to Australia, but it took most of the afternoon sitting in the lobby with our passenger representative trying to negotiate some information on what was happening. That's another day of our vacation where we were waiting around and stressed out. So that's a total of 2 days missed. Eventually Javiar turned up representing Carnival and reluctantly agreed that the passengers in the lobby could transfer to the Hilton for the Saturday night (after much discussion). Eventually we were told that the flight would be at 9:00am on the Sunday and we would arrive in LA after the original advertised arrival time of the ship. Later this departure time was postponed to 10:30am. The flight arrived in LA around lunchtime. I wasn't going to hold my breath.
Whilst I understand that the delay was not planned, our vacation was not what we had hoped. Both my husband and myself were looking forward to the Friday and Saturday on the ship to relax before our flight home. I was disappointed in the manner in which Carnival dealt with this issue and feel that the process undertaken showed little regard the passengers left in Puerto Vallarta.
Having spent quite a lot of money to travel over to the US from Australia and having waited 12 months for this, I'm sure you can understand the disappointment and frustrating of having our break cut short and spending 2 days stressed out and waiting in cues due to Carnival's inappropriate arrangements and poor communications.
Other than being mistreated by Carnival - I really enjoyed the ports we stopped at - especially CABO!
Food: The buffet lines were too long - need more staff - by the time i got to the front of the line, the food wasn't even worth it
Service: Other than one bar member at the bar near the casino - the service on the boat was horrible