My partner was a first time cruiser and she was very favorably impressed. "How come I never did this before?"
The only real negative, and we had no complaints at all exept for this...We had earlier set up on the Carnival web site to use separate accounts for Sail and Sign. There was confusion for some reason at check-in so I said, "just put it all on my credit card." They said fine and did not take partner's credit card info. I think the nice Carnival lady checking us in was new. She keep asking her supervisor lots of questions. Well anyway, the bulk of of our charges were made with my Carnival SS card, but about $40 were made on partner's SS card. We got the Carnival statements the morning of debarkation, as usual. Hers said FINAL NOTICE and that she needed to stop by Guest Services. Well, we foolishly chose not to do that because of the long lines, and we figured we could take care of it later. After all, Carnival had already gotten close to $1200 from us. We can't be trusted for $40?
Well, let me tell you. If you owe $40 on a Carnival SS card you are not getting off their ship! When they scanned her card as we were just about to leave the ship (after standing in line forever), all the bells and whistles went off. Security people gathered to gaze at their computer monitors. We were taken out of line and, for all practical purposes, forced to move to another long line at Guest Services to pay the $40 charged to her card (keep in mind, they had told us that BOTH SS cards would be charged to my credit card and that we were both authorized users on MY account, so all this was their mistake). Anyway, we finally got to pay Carnival the $40, became worthy again and went back to stand in the first line again - a line which had now been stopped completely because of backups at customs.
It was a bit of a shame to have such a fine trip tainted right at the end by the Carnival security peoples' aggressive heavy-handedness. They won't listen, they are apparently not allowed to think and they function like robot-cops. And make no mistake, we learned that they will in fact literally lay hands on you - even if it is really Carnival's own error and even if it is only $40.