This was a family cruise of twelve including children, spouses and grandchildren, ages 9 to 69. We had six cabins, four balconies and two inside. This was our third family cruise with previous family cruises on Carnival and RCL. This was the fifteenth cruise for my DW and myself with eight on Carnival and others on RCL, NCL, Princess and Celebrity. The grandchildren had a wonderful cruise and want to know when we are going on another cruise.
The Magic is a beautiful ship and is extremely clean and well maintained. Especially considering 4600 passengers, including 1600 children, plus 1400 staff.
My DW had a balcony cabin with our 15 year old granddaughter and I had an inside cabin with our 9 year old grandson. I never met my cabin steward during the cruise, however, the steward did a good job of servicing the cabin. My DW had a different cabin steward and was not satisfied with the service. The cabin was not serviced until mid afternoon and on at least two days ice was not placed in the ice bucket.
We found the food on the Lido deck to be good and we did not have a problem with lines. The longest line I had was 10 minutes in the hamburger line on one occasion.
The major disappointment was in the service and food in the main dining room. We had a table for twelve with late seating in the Southern Lights dining room. The service was extremely slow. On the first night it took two hours to eat. Five of us were served with our main courses and had almost finished when the other seven were served. On several occasions the main courses were room temperature at best. On one occasion my DW had a baked chicken breast that was inedible. I had prime rib that was cold and had to request au jus and horseradish. I also had to request sour cream for the baked potato. We constantly had to request refills on water and tea. I even requested that they place a pitcher of water and tea at our table and we would pour our own refills. This never happened. Also, we had to request additional bread and butter. On the night they served chateaubriand two of the orders were never filled. They explained that there was a mix up and those orders were served to another table, We finally told the waiter to bring whatever beef main course was available. The salads, soups and desserts were all good with the exception of the baked Alaska. The quality of the baked Alaska has greatly deteriorated from the first time we cruised with Carnival in 1990
I finally filed a complaint with the guest services department. The next evening the Maitre d came to our table and apologized for the service. He explained that they had gone to a new system with three servers to a team and they were trying to resolve the problems. In my opinion they have reduced the staff. Our wait staff had four tables with 32 seats. As I recall on our prior family cruises with our table of twelve the staff only had one other table. Of our fifteen cruises this cruise would rate as number 15 in the quality of food and service in the main dining room. This is the only time I have ever filed a complaint. In my opinion this is a management problem and not a staff issue. Our waiter worked extremely hard and I gave him an additional gratuity.
Even with the issues we had on this cruise I think we received a good value for our vacation dollar and will cruise again and will probably cruise again on Carnival.