We went on a scrapbooking themed cruise on the Fantasy, leaving from Mobile. The ship was delayed coming in 27 hours due to weather and we left 27 hours late. We were promised a full day of cruising refund but we found out the hard way ... Read More
We went on a scrapbooking themed cruise on the Fantasy, leaving from Mobile. The ship was delayed coming in 27 hours due to weather and we left 27 hours late. We were promised a full day of cruising refund but we found out the hard way that the refund did not include any prorating of our $393.34 in port fees, taxes, or other fees. This makes zero sense to me since our docking in Cozumel was cancelled. I guess Carnival pays Cozumel zero port fees. I did not get the automatic prorated refund for pre-paid gratuities credited as a refundable credit to my on-board ship account that I was supposed to get so I called and spent an hour on the phone arguing that I never got it and they finally agreed I had not gotten it and so they are mailing a check in 2-3 weeks. Then there was the onboard ship account mess in addition to not getting the prepaid gratuities refund. I downloaded Carnival's cruise app where one is supposed to be able keep up with one's onboard charges. Half the time it did not work. When the account part of the app worked, it worked well and was accurate. However, the last night of the cruise, a piece of paper detailing my charges and credits was slipped under the door that totally disagreed with the online app. So I went to Guest Services and they looked it up and decided the app was right but not the last night paper statement. This was the only positive experience I had with Fantasy's Guest Services.
The morning on board the ship, we heard hammering or something right below our cabin from about 6 am to 6:45 am. I went to guest services about 7:15 am and there was noone there and no sign saying they would open or be back at a certain time. So I yelled to see if there was anybody and back. After the third holler, someone came out. I was told they could do nothing about the hammering because I did not report it while it was going on. If it happened again, I should call. So the next morning when it happened again, I called guest services from my cabin and guess what? They did not answer! I hung up, waited a few minutes and called again and again no answer. Shame on you Fantasy Guest Services and Shame on the very noisy Fantasy crew who bang and make all kinds of noises when people should be sleeping.
There were many more problems with this stupid cruise, and I will try to think of a few more of them. When we got to the cruise terminal, there was about a 30-40 minute line of cars outside backed up into the street trying to get into the parking garage. Once we finally got our luggage turned over to a porter and parked, I, who have a handicapped hangtag, had to stand in line with everyone else in the garage for 45 minutes just for the privilege to ride up an escalator to another long line. At this point, I spotted some wheelchairs that I had not seen before and asked for one and was told I did not need one anymore because the lines upstairs for security were real short. So we went up the escalator to security and there were horrible lines. So I asked again for a wheelchair. I wanted over 20 minutes for a wheelchair. After we got through security and signed in, I was pushed up a very, very long ramp and taken to my room by a very nice young man. But the whole ordeal of parking and boarding took over 2 hours. Oh, and by the way, there is a shortage of handicapped parking spots.
Our cruise was cut from 2 1/2 days at sea and 2 ports to 2 1/2 days at sea and 1 port. Despite this, Carnival closed the pool on the last day at sea and there was very little to do except eat, drink alcohol, gamble, and play bingo. Shame on Carnival for closing the pool without telling anybody you were going to! Somebody told me Carnival does it on all cruises to clean the pool but I didn't know they were going to do it. I have been on 3 other cruises, twice on Royal Caribbean, and once over 10 years ago on Carnival and this was by far the worst. On the other cruises, the cruise line had interesting speakers who gave programs on board about the natural history or history of our destination, but Fantasy had not interesting programs like that.
As for the food, my daughter said she thought the Fantasy had a theme for their food, "dry cake." Except for one night serving of Tiramisu that was tasty and moist, she and I agreed that all of their cakes were very dry and therefore not as tasty as they might have been. Carnival should serve a wider variety of desserts, especially on their buffet, such as some pies or cobblers. On the one night we had in port in Progresso, we decided to try the buffet instead of 6 pm dinner reservation and were dissappointe to get to the Lido buffet and find it there was only one hot line and it was very long. Why? This seems like a very bad management decision. Even in the mornings when they have two hot buffet lines the lines are long so why ever go down to one?
Hopefully this is the last complaint, cabins are real small but bathroom not too small and they need to update the cabin to have more than one outlet for recharging multiple phones and cameras. My daughter were fighting over the outlet. And I had to get my daughter to stand on my bed to reach the air conditioning vent to adjust the air flow coming out directly over my bed since I have mobility problems and didn't dare.
I'll stop there. You get the picture. Messy accounting, deplorable refund practices, horrible embarkation practices, terrible Guest Services, cabins clean but need modernizing. Since my mother told me never to say anything bad if I couldn't say anything good, I will list a few pluses: clean and neat cabins, very nice and caring personnel on board the ship except for Guest Services, good buffet breakfasts in the Lido buffet although lines a little long and having to share tables with strangers. But sharing a table with a stranger can be turned into a plus. Read Less