Review by 1st time cruiser with 3 yo: Carnival Sunshine Cruise Review by fuzzbucket
Overall Member Rating
Review by 1st time cruiser with 3 yo
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Orlando (Port Canaveral)
This was my 1st ever cruise and it was a last minute decision, booked 4 days before leaving. I was traveling with my 3 yo son and my 75 yo mother. After this experience I will never cruise again.
I tried to use the online check in the day before sailing. After 6 hours of failed attempts (tech department couldn't figure out the problem) I was finally able to check-in and print out our boarding passes. We got to Cape Canaveral only to learn that the online check-in was a waste of time. All of my records were lost, so we had to begin the entire check-in again - about 45 minutes at the desk. The lady helping us was super friendly and relieved all of our frustration. Excellent customer service!
Onto the food: I found most of it inedible. I literally had to spit out food for the 1st time in my life after sampling the sushi in the MDR. Guy's burgers was horrendous - soggy, greasy fries serviced alongside a crunchy, dry burger. Plus they play his voice More on a constant loop. I cringed at the sound of his ever repeating monologue by the end. I sat next to seasoned cruisers who said the food was the worst ever. I'm an early riser so I was always able to get eggs cooked to order in the morning (even though one cook shouted at me that he couldn't add cheese to my eggs - no need to shout, but he was so agitated at my request I thought he might spit in my dish lol).
The food and the service in the MDR was awful. I had only one awesome dish there the - gazpacho one the first night. Yum! Most nights the food was cold. On one night with my mother it took us 20 minutes to get a glass of wine after ordering it, and after 1 hour and 45 minutes we were both still sitting at our table with eaten dirty appetizer plates at our table. the waiter that night was so extremely rude to me when I asked for one soup as an appetizer and an additional soup as a main course. My mom asked to speak to the manager, but after another 30 minutes of wait time we got up and left. We saw one of the others diners in our area talking to the manager on our way out. she had the same issues as us, and the manager told us both that he would "make it right". He sent us a plate of chocolate covered strawberries that night, I would have preferred a champagne cocktail, but whatever...
I never saw the cruise director or the captain. Everything was so crowded that maybe they were somewhere up front during scheduled times. The main pool was so overcrowded, it felt like a rugby scrum. I had my bikini bottoms and top pulled off so many times that I cringed whenever my son asked to go in the pool. As a single person, I could never find a free lounger on any deck in the Serenity area. People weren't reserving chairs, there were people in every chair on the decks. Not enough room for everyone.
Bar service at the Iguana and at the Serenity was unpersonal. I think the staff may have been listening to the World Cup finals. When I asked if my son could get a paper umbrella in his smoothie, they said "no".
I have a couple of other things on my "ugh" list including a room steward that we never saw after the 2nd night (really NEVER saw him and did not get towel animals), a leaking air conditioner outside of our room that was solved by placing a bucket there, and having to walk through the smoke filled casino in order to get to dinner. We were on the 6th floor (1 floor above the casino) and the smoke smell permeated the hallways.
The one redeeming factor: Camp Carnival for my 3yo was AWESOME. he begged to go there everyday. If it was closed my son ran himself ragged on the kid's slide. I had him in camp for about 4 hours a day. Less
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