This was me and my husband's 5 cruise and second with Carnival line. I can honestly say without hesitation that this was the worse cruise ever. And if this was my first cruise I'd ever been on I'd probably never take another one!
We booked this cruise for a couple of reasons. 1- We wanted to take the kids on their first cruise and this week lined up with their spring break, 2- It was cheap (you really do get what you pay for) and 3- we live in Ohio so we could drive there.
Embarkation- We drove so we used their parking lot. We got there around 9am which was pretty early so the attendant told us we had to come back later. The port seems like it was in a sketchy neighborhood. We asked her where we could get a bite to eat and she said there was a Wal-Mart with a McDonald's in it. This struck us as funny because if someone came to Ohio and asked where they could go to get something to eat a fast food place in a Wal-Mart would be the last place I'd tell someone to go. But we just laughed about that. When we did get to the parking lot it was congested (which is fine a lot of people trying to get on the ship) but they way the traffic was handled was a joke. We were one of the first lines there but one of the last ones let in. And the attendant who gave us Wal-Mart directions was directing traffic while smoking a cigarette and not even looking at the car she was directing to go.
So....When you pay for the parking you can pay by cash or credit. They had 2 women in an SUV in the middle of the 2 lanes taking your money. One of them was yelling and going off about something.... All I heard was...I've been here for 5hrs and I didn't get a single tip. I was very afraid to let them swipe my credit card!!
Getting through security was easy and everyone was very nice in the terminal.
We went to the Lido deck when we got on the ship to hit the buffets and get the kids some ice cream. The buffets were a joke. They only had one grille open for hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken and fries and that is what everyone ate! The wait for that line was not shorter than 20min every day. This was a hot spot for my kids because that's all they ate the entire cruise. The ice cream machines were right by the grille so the grill line always wrapped around to the ice cream station. So you had 2 lines running into each other.
The food in the restaurant and buffet was terrible! My husband was sick for 3 days after eating their food. We had to go see the nurse just to buy something for his diarrhea. I got sick on the last day on the cruise.
Camp Carnival was another joke. My 7y/o spent a total of 2hrs in there and my 5y/o maybe a total of 4hrs in 7 days there. They didn't do the activities that were on the itinerary. They said they were going to have a magician and when I picked my 5 y/o up and asked him how he liked the magician he said they never had one. And when I picked him up they were all sitting around watching t.v.
The halls would smell like raw sewage, our toilet would flush and then bring whatever was flushed back up. Probably from everyone using the facilities too often from getting sick! The toilet smelled like urine! I mean like port-a-potty smell!
Pools were freezing cold. One day when it was finally warm enough to swim my husband asked 3 different people if they could clean the pool because it was so dirty with bugs and debris. Finally he took the pool skimmer out and cleaned it himself. You think any workers stopped him from doing it....no they just watched him do it. Slide was never on. It only operates if the temp is 74 degrees or more.
HERE'S THE BEST PART!!!
Our first stop was Port Canaveral. We went to Universal Studios, which was awesome! Just wish we had more time there. When we returned there was a severe thunderstorm and "a gust of wind" hit the ship and snapped one of the mooring lines holding the ship to the deck. This made the ship move away from the deck and made the on ramp separate from the ship. They had to immediately call everyone off the ramp and made us wait in the terminal until they fixed the problem. Well we ended up staying in that terminal for 3hrs! They didn't know what they were doing. They ended up shipping half of the people waiting to get on the ship to another port then decided that wasn't a good idea. So those people who were sipped to the other port had to come all the way back and go through security again. They gave us a granola bar and a pop while we waited our 3hrs! We missed our early dinner. We were in the terminal from approx. 6pm to 9pm. We ordered room service (cold sandwiches!) and had to wait at least 45 min. for it because everyone was ordering! It gets better......We were suppose to leave Port Canaveral at7pm that night but didn't end up leaving until 6am the next morning because when the mooring line broke they had to drop the anchor and a mechanism broke to bring the anchor up. Instead of taking us to Nassau they opted to skip that port and take us directly to Freeport. They said we got a "bonus day at sea!" Wippy dooo!! Who wants to spend a total of 5 days at sea on a boring ship!!?? Freeport only had one thing to do and that was get a taxi and go to the beach.
We complained to the excursion and help desk because our excursion we booked at Nassau was canceled and the same excursion at Freeport was 70 bucks more. We didn't want to pay any more than we already had for our excursions. They all said "their hands were tied." So we asked to speak to the manager and he gave us the same response. And that none of what happened was their fault. They were not sympathetic at all!
In the end they gave everyone a 25 dollar on board credit for our troubles (which didn't seem like enough) and $0.71 back for the port we missed. I would like to know if it's only $0.71 per person for each port then why do they charge so much extra the more ports you stop!
The staff looked like they hated their job and acted like it too. Probably because they did!
My kids said they were happy to be home. And so were my husband and I!!!
I don't know how this ship ever got any good reviews!!! If you book this cruise then good luck and I hope your experience is better than ours was. But I would never recommend this cruise to anyone!!! Happy sailing!!