We've been several lines, each have a different reason we take it. Sometimes atmosphere, ports, etc. This is our 4th time on Paradise, and the last.
When Paradise came to Tampa, I'm not sure where they got their Captain from but "Over the Top" is an understatement. Then the safety drill was 45 minutes of grueling painful over the top, now it's down to 23 with some over the top but not like it was.... ok a plus. The guy STILL can't get the boat in the same time Inspiration got in (6-7am) WE NEED TO GO BACK TO WORK!!!! NOT HANG OUT ON THAT SHIP!!!
Alas this is nothing yet again, the Carnival crew has managed to piss off it's most patient and forgiving guests.
** Dirty Buffet Dining Room - since we were tired of 2 hour dinners due to extremely slow service, we did this cruise in the buffet. What was kept very clean by dutiful staff, no longer is. Try to find someone, not happening. I cleaned my own table.
** Skimping - Carnival definitely came across as complete tightwads on this cruise. No more potato chips with the rueben? I had a list of these small things, they've cut a lot of it. Even the food quality which was going up in October has slid to less than a soup kitchen. I had to intruct the meat carver on how to carve the meat properly for less loss and customer satisfaction - went in one ear and out the other.
** Food quality - as mentioned above what worked was simple - Wok, and any carved meat with a baked potato. Pretty slim pickings, but unless it was a no brainer the food pretty much wasn't worth of dog food.
** Staff anything - Poor attitudes, even security! They were so SMUG, we had to start giving them some crap..... wasn't exactly a great idea but at the end of the day they still didn't get the message. Whether it was bar, casino, restaurant, security, room, the staff was deaf, dumb, and blind.
** Clean??? - the public bathrooms were disgusting! it was a waste hazard everywhere except on certain levels. The worst was the Lido deck, feces and body fluids everywhere!
** How much is that drink? getting to be the thumb on the scale method. Make sure you call your liquor and ask how much each one is. There is a difference in Vodkas as well as others, if you don't call it you could get stuck with a higher priced drink. (HINT - Have a bottle delivered to your room instead it's cheaper)
** Cruise Director??? - ok 3rd time wasn't a charm, yes a nice guy, but this isn't his cup of tea. He comes off as a backwoods idiot who's only purpose in life is to showcase himself in over egotistical outfits and acts as he is the headliner......NOT. Talent is extrememly marginal if that, but the question remains - WHY CAN'T WE EVER FIND HIM????
** Overall - If we used this ship as a gauge - Carnival is sinking. We feel they have cut in so many places they no longer have the skills necessary to upright the ship in a favorable way. The best part, aside from Cozumel, of this entire cruise was running (YES) off the ship to go home.
** Results - with the exception of 2 ports that we like and are figuring if we can forever live without, We are shelving our VIP status with Carnival and increasing with RCCL to start. I have to say that the last 5 cruises have been interesting, but the last 3 have told the story and we are tired of it all. Carnival has shown the manufactured side of the industry very very well, we don't need it. Poor ethics, moral, quality, and worst of all - they have no intent of customer service. As asked by a fellow shipmate that is writing a letter to Carnival, she asked why we wouldn't - been there done that - tired of the dance around the bush answers that resolve nothing.