8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
Convenient cruise- easy getting form the Long Beach airport to the cruise ship- & used the shuttle as only myself traveling, but if I was with a group would have used UBER to get to & from the ship . I wanted a short itinerary, ... Read More
Convenient cruise- easy getting form the Long Beach airport to the cruise ship- & used the shuttle as only myself traveling, but if I was with a group would have used UBER to get to & from the ship . I wanted a short itinerary, to determine if I would enjoy solo cruising. Was great being able to have cabin to self, able to do what I wanted when I wanted & how I wanted. Totally enjoyed the sauna, steam room & gym. was well taken care of by my room steward, Supron - always had a full ice container, room cleaned as necessary Did the Chef's table & was impressed by all the food that was fixed & served, Learned many interesting facts about the food, preparation & many ingredients for the many foods that was served to us. Even learned some new things about different herbs & spices to combine with different foods. In Ensenada discovered a great place to go for a massage- Massage & Facial Wellness - within walking distance of the ship- and very reasonable priced, then did a chocolate class at the Maya Cacao- learning how chocolate is made form cacao beans- Did I mention that is all organic & they use the profits to support orphanages in the area Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
This Cruise was perfect for a quick getaway and a party platform for my soon-to-married Uncle. This cruise is a little rowdy but knowing this HAVE FUN. I probably would not bring children on this one. The cruise was very affordable ... Read More
This Cruise was perfect for a quick getaway and a party platform for my soon-to-married Uncle. This cruise is a little rowdy but knowing this HAVE FUN. I probably would not bring children on this one. The cruise was very affordable and Carnival did a great job providing top value for the price paid. My Uncle is 84 and the Bachelor party consisted of 35-48 year olds as well as my 84 year old UNCLE. -Check in at the Long Beach Terminal was a Breeze. No lines or Hassles. We arrived at 100pm and were immediately on board. However, the 710 fwy had a lot of traffic, south bound towards the port. -THe Ship is nice. Not the newest but all the amenities were adequate and clean.I was disappointed the pool was not filled until sail away. -The staff were very hospitable. -Our Room E116 was an Interior room big enough for 3. AC worked perfectly. Our room was ready immediately and something new-->Carnival now provides you the room keys outside of your room door in an envelope. -The soap and shampoo are of better quality from what I remember too. -The Food was very good. From Guys Burgers to the Mexican Station. WOW, KILLER SHRIMP and BREAKFAST Burritos. Sea day Brunch always impresses and Dinners were of quality too. I loved the Ceaser Salad and escargot ..The Cheesecake and Molten were awesome. -Entertainment was great. The night club and casino were fun. Actually the Casino paid out a lot this trip. (CRAPS!!!!). The energy was excellent. The Piano Bar, Comedy Club and Karaoke were very entertaining. We never saw a show--> NO TIME :) -Debarkation was extremely quick and what I always do is pack and go up and eat breakfast while the herd is vacating. -FINALLY, this was my first time buying CHEERS. Im too old to smuggle and how much do you really save on a 3 day cruise? I paid the $171 and I drank my money's worth. The Alchemy bar has the best drinks, probably worth 15 bucks plus at a great restaurant. Having 3 blue cheese stuffed Olive, Grey Goose Martinis a night, was a treat. Also being able to consume the Coffee house coffee and Irish coffee was fantastic. The Vitamin waters helped on the ENSENADA day. I really think Cheers is worth it. I debated on this but ultimately I am so happy I spent the money. Knowing all your non alcoholic drinks especially coffee are included was reassuring. I do not like the regular coffee upstairs. This is my 4 mini cruise on Carnival. If I had the time, I would do this monthly. Good job Carnival on providing such a great product for an affordable price. My 84 year Old Uncle ran circles around us. He was in Heaven. I appreciate the guests and employees for making his Bachelor party the BEST. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
I’ve cruised some 42-times (really). It can be a wonderful vacation. Cruising has changed so much so over the last two decades and sometime back in 1990, I took my first Carnival cruise. I recently decided to do another Carnival ... Read More
I’ve cruised some 42-times (really). It can be a wonderful vacation. Cruising has changed so much so over the last two decades and sometime back in 1990, I took my first Carnival cruise. I recently decided to do another Carnival cruise this July 2015. The first one was fairly sub-standard in comparison to the other many lines I have sailed and I wanted to give Carnival another chance this 2015. I boarded Carnival’s ‘Inspiration’ with no expectations. Carnival delivered on that concept with even less than I expected. This was just a 4 day cruise out of Long Beach to Catalina and Ensenada, Mexico. Let’s start with embarkation/boarding… One hour and a half was the process time from entering the terminal to actually boarding the ship. We arrived at our recommended time of 1:30pm to 2:30pm. They were overwhelmed at check-in. In fact so much so that you had to assume this must be Carnival’s first time at this terminal. It was not. The check-in representative shared with us that so many Carnival passengers (many first-timers) fail to do their pre-departure online check-in process before sailing and that disrupts and slows down the check-in process. Boarding the ship itself and entering the ships small atrium/lobby area resulted in several 25-30 year olds in Carnival t-shirts (staff we guessed) which appeared to be there to do something with the boarding process. They did not greet or assist but we had accomplished our pre-homework (before sailing) and knew exactly where to go while some passengers did not. We headed off to Stateroom/Cabin M-187. The lifeboat drill is a mandatory attendance requirement before sailing (yet Carnival does not take role/attendance as other lines do). That was a full hour with staff/crew sadly unprepared and certainly not qualified to ever initiate an evacuation from one of its ships. Carnival has learned nothing from the sinking of its COSTA CONCORDIA brand off the coast of Italy, a few years back (Carnival owned the Costa Concordia). Know you cabin areas and muster station areas and never wait for the crew to assist you aboard a Carnival ship if there is an emergency. Carry a personal led flashlight aboard any cruise and be prepared to get your life jacket and get topside ASAP. Things quickly improved and we met our stateroom steward (Gerald) who took Carnival up several levels to exceptional and friendly customer service levels. He was genuine and sincere and stayed that way for the entire crew (he had the task of cleaning 27 cabins per day). The cabin was old and tired (as was the entire ship) but workable. The ship was last refurbished in 2010 and is in dire need of dry dock time. The outside areas were rusted, torn and dirty and Carnival was putting no effort into the ships appearance. Maintenance was never evident during the entire 4 day sailing. The stateroom itself was very basic. Only one outlet was provided for A/C power. Chargers for phones, laptops, etc. were on a waitlist for that single shared outlet. The cabin came with a small-sized TV (maybe 13-15 inches ???). DirecTV was the service provider and TV channels came in clear and clean with about 7 available channels. There were no movies in a theater onboard but Carnival showed the movie GRAVITY over and over for 24 hours on the TV. This is a self-service cruise with few planned activities. Expect ports-of-call to be the focus of your sailing with a so-called Fun-Day-At-Sea. That Fun-Day-At-Sea means drinking and drinking, walking around and maybe some sun time in crowded (and close) deck chairs. I expect some harsh feedback or criticism (from this review) but the cuisine aboard the ship was very CHUCK E. CHEESE (in the dining rooms) and GOLDEN CORAL from the buffet areas. Food counters were dirty, abused and poorly stocked. Staffing was minimal everywhere and never would you see the ships actual officers walking or inspecting the food areas or open deck areas. It was more like going to CAMP. Food quality was beyond sub-par. No effort at presentation, quality or taste. One exception to that rule was a venue called MONGOLIAN WOK where for a few hours a day (usually Noon to 4PM), Asian stir fry dishes were created poolside. They were fresh, cooked well and very good! Dining room menus offered a chicken breast entree each night and specialties included Carbonara Spaghetti (without Carbonara) and flatbreads. For $20.00 person, you could UPGRADE the menu each night to a steak or lobster tail. Our ship (Inspiration) had no other alternative pay-venue restaurants. Dining room tables (main dining room) were mostly large, seating 10 to 12 guests per table. Again, Carnival was poorly staffing the dining rooms with the waiters working incredibly hard to try their best to accommodate guests onboard. NEVER did we ever see a Maitre d’ make his/her rounds in the main dining room. There are NO RULES aboard a Carnival ship. We saw a 7-9 year old playing the slot machines in the casino with her dad. Jacuzzi tubs marked ADULTS ONLY were filled with kids. Glassware (instead of plastic wear) were in the pools and Jacuzzi’s while deck staffed looked on with no authority to enforce or they simply didn’t care. Smoking of cigars and cigarettes occurred in all areas. No enforcement. Older teens bragged that they got adults to buy them drinks or that they held out large cash tips for the bar staff who would then serve them. Carnival does have a very strict rule of bringing alcohol aboard its ships and beyond all other efforts or concerns, they placed extreme interest and time/staffing to make sure you were only buying their drinks while onboard. Liquor, wines and beer were caught always from both checked luggage and carry-ons. You also cannot carry on bottled water and must purchase their water as of July 2015. In fairness, Carnival promotes its cruises as ‘FUN’. These are boat rides and not cruises. Filled with 24/7 partying (especially in the 3-4 day segments/market). The type of Carnival passenger is varied by many 20-30 aged young adults; sometimes very rowdy. Yet many families were aboard as well. There were few senior people aboard. It’s like a Greyhound Bus at-sea or a Motel 6 at poolside. Sometimes self-centered, loud and obnoxious. Many are first-time cruisers and many are simply just good-old-boys that can down two 6-packs a day with ease. The profile of so many Carnival passengers probably can be best described as AL & PEG BUNDY along with ZZ Top at your dining room table... It’s just a boat ride for many. They have no idea of what a real cruise is really like. It really can be a classless experience if you don’t have an open mind and are not tolerant of 3-7 days of pure crazy. Vegas with Randy Quaid and Chevy Chase? Randy Quaid’s (Vegas Vacation movie) classic scene in the buffet line (with Clark Griswold) hoarding the buffet line with food piled mile-high on his plate is another profile of a Carnival passenger. This is the type of individual that Carnival sells to! It’s not wrong and it’s not bad! It’s simply Carnival and so many of the passengers onboard really enjoyed their first-time experience and liked Carnival! Some argued, some wore baseball caps to the dining room and some wore very little period! Again, a unique passenger base of varied and laughable characters. Disembarkation consists of three groups. You can pay $50 extra to Carnival to both board early and disembark early. Then there is the self-assist group for *walk-offs/carry your luggage off* and finally the cruise tradition of placing your bags outside your stateroom (night before) and waiting for your group to be called. Clear US customs, clear the parking lot (parking is $19 a day at Long Beach, CA as of this writing) and finally either board a bus for the airport or jump into your car and drive away as fast as you can! I’m personally very glad that there is a Carnival Cruise Lines! It keeps Carnival passengers off of the quality cruise lines such as Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and Disney Cruise Lines. Many passengers loved it! Many said they had sailed Carnival 8-12 times. For myself, I’ll pass on a future Carnival Cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2014
We recently returned from a 3 night cruise with a large group. We had lots of fun but definitely some things have gone downhill. We were in U87,a full suite, the most expensive category on the ship.The suite has adequate square footage ... Read More
We recently returned from a 3 night cruise with a large group. We had lots of fun but definitely some things have gone downhill. We were in U87,a full suite, the most expensive category on the ship.The suite has adequate square footage and a wonderful large balcony. Unfortunately there is a large floor to ceiling pole so close to one side of the king size bed that you can't avoid it, hazardous if you get up during the night. We have had much better amenities in other cruise lines in standard cabins. If you're in a suite wouldn't you at least expect a small complimentary bottle of shampoo and a complimentary bottle of conditioner, a shower cap, body cream/lotion, q-tips or cotton balls? The only thing provided was a bar of soap and a complimentary tube of toothpaste. There was a soap and shampoo dispenser in the tub/shower combination but attached so high it was only helpful if you were showering and not soaking in a tub. This suite was a joke with a worthless wimpy wall attached hair dryer in the bathroom that barely blew warm air. How expensive could it be to have a hand help dryer in a drawer for the guest's use? We had the thinnest, cheapest towels, something you might expect in a Motel 6, substandard to any towels we've ever had on any of our many cruises on numerous cruise lines. There were 2 attached metal glass holders in the bathroom but again...worthless since the glasses are much smaller and would fall through the holder. There was a magnifying mirror attached to the bathroom wall which would have been wonderful but it just hangs down. I tried to find a way to tightened it to make it usable but to no avail. On a good note....we had a wonderful cabin steward, Alexi, who went above and beyond. He was very attentive and personable. We were pleased with the food in the Mardi Gras dining room and no complaints in the dining room service though you could tell they were overloaded and often stressed. The public areas in the ship were in much better condition than our shabby suite. We did like the Priority boarding Suite guests have, but not worth the $ we paid. All and all we had a nice time since we were with friends in our group. Unless this group cruise is offered on a different cruise line or a newer ship, I'm doubtful we would cruise on the Inspiration again. Word of advice...bring anything you may need during your stay since the basics are not provided, even in their suites. Carnival is CHEAP, you get what you pay for. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2013
This is my 9th cruise but my first review. I booked this cruise because Carnival had gotten rid of the Solo Supplement on this cruise and booked it about a month before cruise time. This was a 3 day cruise to Ensenada out of Los Angeles. ... Read More
This is my 9th cruise but my first review. I booked this cruise because Carnival had gotten rid of the Solo Supplement on this cruise and booked it about a month before cruise time. This was a 3 day cruise to Ensenada out of Los Angeles. This is the first time I have sailed out of Los Angeles. The cruise was fun with only a couple of small irritants that did not ruin my cruise. I took the Carnival Transfer from LAX. That part went smooth. I received a call shortly after my plane arrived as I was walking to the baggage claim letting me know where to go and who to look for. Found her as soon as I hit the baggage claim area. Had maybe a 1/2 hour wait to board the bus. Met one of the comedians that was going to be performing on the ship. Chris Wiles. Great comedian. The first irritant was when arriving at the cruise terminal. Got off the bus and there was only one porter. He took the bag and directed us to the dome building for checking since the Queen Mary was closed. I head to the dome building. There are a bunch of people waiting outside. I see a I see a lady calling people to enter the building and she says to have your Zone card and S&S cards out. This is the only person I see directing people where to go so I ask her where I am to go to get signed in. She tells me to go to the Queen Mary. I report what the porter told us so she tells us to go stand in a line over there and points in the direction of a lot of people standing in a line. I go there and find out from others that they already have signed in and this is a line for people with there S&S cards already. They tell me to go to the Queen Mary. Me and a few other confused new arrivals head to the Queen Mary. Once we get close to that, we see some other workers and they tell us that the Queen Mary is closed and to head to this other line by the dome building. Sure enough there is a line that is forming in the middle of nowhere, no workers, no signs, nothing. We go there and this is the line to wait in to get called inside to get your S&S card. We wait outside till they get all the people who already have their S&S card into the building. Then they let us in. We get inside and stand in line I am directed to for the counter. Shortly after that they open a second line for people who got there after me and they basically get to jump in front of a lot of people who where already there. These were not people who had FTTF or where platinum or diamond. They alternated between lines who went when the next desk worker was available. I was slightly irritated, but got over it once I got my card and was headed to the ship. Got on the ship and headed to the Lido. Found a seat and settled in till the rooms were ready. At 1:30 I headed to my room and dropped off my carry on luggage. That first evening I meet a great group of people. 3 couples. 2 couples came together and the 3rd couple they had met at their assigned dining table. Partied with them for the evening. Had a great time. 2nd day met up with the group in the morning and went to Ensenada with them. We went to Papa&Beers and had a great time with them. The bar is a wild place to go. We also went to the first place that made margarita. I ordered one and it was a strong margarita. That evening I went to the Comedy Club. Both comedians where funny. 3rd day I hung out on the Lido deck and down by the Casino bar. I also tried my luck in the Casino and had none. The first night we also met another group of cruisers. They were Cowboy and Raider fans. Sat down with them on the 3rd day to watch some football. Watched my Chiefs beat the Raiders. Fun was had by all. Later that evening I met up with 2 of the couples and we ended up going to the Comedy Club again. These were new shows by the same comedians. Another great night. One issue I had was that I am normally on East Coast time and with being on the West Cost, it was hard to stay up for the late night activities. One strange thing was that I never saw or met my room steward. Every other cruise I have been on I have met them and see them through out the day. Food in the MDR was excellent and so was the service. I ate breakfast both 1st and 2nd morning in the DR. I also had lunch on the sea day in the DR.. Serves and food was excellent. I tried out had the burgers and hot dogs on the lido a couple of times and it was good. I also did the sandwich station. Excellent sandwich. Tried the pizza and it was just OK. When I woke up on debarking I noticed on my bill that I was charged twice for a purchase on the last night. It was a $55 charge. I had an early flight (12:10) so I was self debarking. I gathered my stuff and headed to guest services. Thankfully the line was not that long. I got to the counter and the double billing had already been taken care of. At that time they had started to let people off the ship. Got in line and headed out. Debarking was quick and painless. Took the Carnival transfer to LAX and was sadly on my way home. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2012
I was extremely excited to cruise with a group of friends to Ensenada. School was out for the semester and we needed to get out of dodge! We were looking for relaxation and fun and Carnival delivered for the most part. I've cruised ... Read More
I was extremely excited to cruise with a group of friends to Ensenada. School was out for the semester and we needed to get out of dodge! We were looking for relaxation and fun and Carnival delivered for the most part. I've cruised Royal Caribbean twice before - once on a very comparable cruise to the Bahamas on the Majesty of the Seas (about the same size as the Inspiration). I was looking forward to giving Carnival a try - I'd heard good things from previous cruisers and was looking for an experience of my own. Boarding was great. We showed up at the port and headed to early check-in aboard the Queen Mary (pretty cool, actually). It took us a whopping three minutes to get checked in, so we got our boarding zone number (2) and headed off to tour the Queen Mary for a bit. Our zone was called just after eleven and we headed aboard - ready to start our vacation! When we walked into the atrium, I have to say the 1980's Vegas style didn't bug me like I thought it would. It was a little corny, but it was fun, and that's what we were there for. The cabin was a decent size and, like the rest of the ship, was very clean (if not a tiny bit outdated...the reading lamps were a little weird). It was a good size considering we had four guys sharing the interior room, and we had no problem unpacking all of our stuff for the four days (had we been girls...it probably wouldn't have been as easy). The food throughout the cruise was edible, but not very appetizing. While on Royal Caribbean there were always a number of choices that popped off the menu and stood out at the buffet, our whole group found ourselves asking just what we could stand that night. Definitely not how the menu on a cruise should be. The food itself was mostly poor, with a few exceptions (I'm looking at you, Chocolate Melting Cake...Yum!). Every beef dish seemed to have the exact same from-a-mix gravy. Each "different" bread was made with the same dough and had no variety. The mashed potatoes were more like paste than the fluff they should be. The desserts were okay and were usually the best part of the meal. I think you probably get the point. Edible...not great. The service was decent throughout the ship. I only met our steward once, but he seemed nice and always had our cabin clean and made-up. I had the "bottomless bubbles" package, and every time I went to a bar to get a Coke, the bartenders seemed very unhappy that they weren't serving a "paying" customer. Our dining room staff was ok. Ni, our waitress, had all of our names memorized by the end of the first night, but that was about the best of her service. The rest of the service was consistently slow; we were almost always the last out of the dining room, and not by choice. The cruise/entertainment staff was just fair as well. Our cruise director was very personable, but the activities were just...meh... You know you have a problem when the most exciting "Fun Ship" activity to a bunch of college kids was trivia (we did get a Ship on a Stick, though). The "parties" were fairly lame - even the midnight deck party/buffet that I was looking forward to most. The entertainment in the theater was very mediocre. The dancers were fantastic, but Carnival really needed more than two production singers in the show...they were always drowned out by the band, and they weren't great at all the genres they were supposed to sing. The one highlight was the kids from Camp Carnival singing in a special Christmas Show - way fun, and way Christmasy! Overall, our cruise was relaxing, and we made our own fun when the ship didn't have great things going on (which was most of the time). In fact, I think that's what most people did. I saw a lot of families playing card games, reading or just talking around the ship. Serenity deck was amazing - a great place to hot tub and read while overlooking the wake. My hot stone massage was great (except for the usual sales pitch afterward...but that's a given on a mass market cruise). Ensenada and La Bufadora were awesome (gotta love street fish tacos), but Catalina was canceled due to weather (not a problem - that's what we get for cruising in December). I may give Carnival one more shot on a newer, larger ship with a better itinerary. Maybe that will make a difference. But I never have to go on a Fantasy Class ship again... Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2012
I excitedly boarded the Carnival Inspiration for a four-day cruise to Catalina Island and Ensenada in Baja Mexico. The majestic Fantasy-class ship, built in Finland, can carry up to 3,450 passengers. With a 9-hole mini golf course, ... Read More
I excitedly boarded the Carnival Inspiration for a four-day cruise to Catalina Island and Ensenada in Baja Mexico. The majestic Fantasy-class ship, built in Finland, can carry up to 3,450 passengers. With a 9-hole mini golf course, Carnival WaterWorks water park, and a tropical resort-style pool, guests were enjoying the outside entertainment as the ship set sail to Catalina Island. My interior cabin, without a window, can accommodate four guests, yet is cozy for two people. The bed was comfortable and the bath efficient. There are two main dining rooms on the cruise and a sushi bar. Up on the Lido deck is a Mongolian BBQ, New York style deli, pizzeria, and bountiful salad bar. I dined in the main dining room and met my table mates. The vegetarian dishes were terrific. I was having a great time on the Inspiration watching the entertainment and strolling the various decks, until I received a call from home. My daughter had recently been involved in an auto accident and my family needed me. Since our first port was Catalina Island, I took an early boat the next morning into the city of Avalon and walked to The Catalina Express ticket office to see how quickly I could return to Long Beach. It's about a one-hour boat ride to Long Beach. After purchasing a one-way ticket home, I hopped back onto a boat to the Inspiration. I needed to inform guest services of my predicament. To my shock, a guest service agent informed me that I was not allowed to disembark in an American port due to the Jones Act. I could leave the ship in Ensenada, Mexico, but not in Catalina, California. How would I get back to the Carnival cruise terminal in Long Beach from Ensenada? Take a taxi to an airport, purchase a ticket to fly to Long Beach or LAX, and then take a cab to the cruise terminal? Or I could hire a taxi or bus to the Mexican/California border, then catch a cab to Long Beach? Both made my head dizzy with fear and anxiety. The guest service agent gave me another option after seeing my face pale with worry. She could email a message to a Customs official about my dilemma. There was no guarantee that Customs would allow me to disembark in an American port, however, if they granted my permission, I would have to pay a $300 fine for leaving the cruise ship. $300? That is how much I paid for my share of the cruise. Instead of a $600 trip, it would now cost $900. The guest service agent asked if I would be waiting in my cabin until she received a reply from Customs. I asked if I could leave the ship to sightsee Catalina Island and then come back to hear my fate? She gave me a phone number to contact her and asked for my cell phone number. Jack and I didn't take any excursion in Catalina. I packed my bags, and we took a Shore boat into Avalon. Thoughts raced through my head as we tried to figure out my best strategy to get home. Could Carnival Cruise Lines and Customs force me to stay onboard until we arrived in Ensenada? You bet. What if I just stayed in Avalon until my Catalina Express boat set sail? That would probably bring on a whole new slew of problems. Just before noon, I couldn't wait any longer and called the phone number the guest service lady handed me. It was a ship-to-shore number. An automated operator informed me that each minute would cost $9.75. Since I wasn't speaking to a live person, I could easily accumulate $100 worth of minutes, before my call was connected to a live voice. Instead, I boarded a Shore boat and returned to the Carnival Inspiration. Good News! The Custom official approved my disembarkation, the bad news, I would have to pay a $300 fine now. I was so relieved that I would now be home to my family within hours and not have to deal with trying to get home from Mexico, that I paid my fine and walked off the ship. When I returned home, I did my research about the Jones Act. President Woodrow Wilson signed the Jones Act in 1917. Also known as the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, it's intention was to ensure that the U.S. has a strong merchant marine during times of war. All goods that move between two domestic ports must do so on ships that are U.S. flagged and staffed. It prohibits foreign ships from touching two U.S. ports consecutively. I was considered "goods." Today only 1% of the large commercial vessels are built in the United States. Most of the ships are built in Italy and Finland and fly foreign flags to avoid paying higher taxes and wages to American employees. There is also a piece of U.S. legislation called the Passenger Vessel Services Act of 1886, which relates to cabotage. It states that "No foreign vessels shall transport passengers between ports or places in the United States, either directly or by way of a foreign port, under a penalty of $200 (now $300) for each passenger so transported and landed." Cruise ships pass the cost to passengers, however exemptions are available in case of a family emergency. To penalize a passenger who paid for a four-day cruise, yet needs to leave the cruise vacation early, is unfair. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2011
A friend and I took the Memorial Weekend Cruise out of Tampa with 1 stop in Cozumel. This was my first time using Carnival as my previous 2 cruises were on Royal Caribbean and Norwegian. I have to say after being on all 3, each line ... Read More
A friend and I took the Memorial Weekend Cruise out of Tampa with 1 stop in Cozumel. This was my first time using Carnival as my previous 2 cruises were on Royal Caribbean and Norwegian. I have to say after being on all 3, each line offers something the others don't. As far as Carnival goes, I think what I liked the most were the bed linens and the shower and our room steward Melinda who was so attentive and sweet as can be. This is the first ship I have been on with a real shower with a curtain that was square, and not capsule shaped which made navigating around it much better. I enjoyed the cruise though I think the drinks on the other two lines were better and maybe even colder, but from a price standpoint, completely comparable. The food in the actual dining rooms (I avoid buffets like the plague) was pretty good. There could have been a little more variety each night, but I was pleasantly surprised with the taste/temperature of the food. I do wish the Inspiration had a restaurant that passengers could pay extra to use for dinner, however. We did the your-time dining and enjoyed that, however, we were a bit disappointed that the staff celebration was limited to the dining room that didn't seat the "your time" diners but not a huge loss. the line for your-time dining never took longer than 10 minutes so no complaints there.My only real criticisms would be that there isn't enough music going on throughout the ship. Carnival is, after all, supposed to be the party ship, but we felt like it was really quiet and needed some perking up with some fun music, such as in the lobby areas and so forth. The calypso band that played by the pool was absolutely fantastic though. The activities were pretty good, except that they are scheduled in such short time frames, that when something really got going, the time expired and it was over (ie the afternoon Karaoke).We didn't do any Carnival shore excursions in Cozumel but did do the Mr. Sanchos all-inclusive beach club day for $50. Totally worth it, and we felt as though we were hanging out at the beach/pool of a Mexican resort. Not overly fancy but just a fun day out. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2010
This cruise would be my third and my cabinmates fourth. My other two friends had never been before and were anxious to go. After telling them everything I knew the only thing left was to actually experience it. I hate to fly so we drove ... Read More
This cruise would be my third and my cabinmates fourth. My other two friends had never been before and were anxious to go. After telling them everything I knew the only thing left was to actually experience it. I hate to fly so we drove from to Tampa from St. Louis. I take several roadtrips a year so I drive 300 miles in a blink, so with a driving partner the trip was speedy. We arrived a couple of hours later than I wanted but we still made it by noon. I had never been to the Tampa port before, and despite a seperate parking structure across the street from the terminal, it was no hassle. Embarkation was a breeze. Had not one of my friends had a runny nose that needed to be checked by a doctor, we would have been on the boat in less than 15 minutes from walking in the door. By far the fastest ever because Im used to 1 hour +. We were eating on the Lido deck by 1245 and to our rooms to crash by 130. I have only been on fantasy class ships Sensation and Fantasy and despite bad reviews this ship was the nicest to me. Definitely clean and not tacky purple like the other ones. Our cabin was kept in immaculate condition everyday, no complaints whatsover. The dining room service in the Mardi Gras room left a little more to be desired. The food was excelIent but was slow coming out, maybe because our group averaged 2.5 entrees a piece! I had top notch service on my first two cruises and perhaps was spoiled. Our server Sergio was definitely nice but he reminded me of typical american dining with no pizzazz (sp). I was spoiled by tricks and such but none of that here. As far as the Lido deck food, is was nothing special and pretty much what is expected. The sushi was excellent. Room service was great also. Im easy to please and I had no complaints about this cruise even if I thought long and hard. I was greeted by a smiling face everywhere I went by the staff. As far as debarkation is was as smooth as could be. Apparently a few non american passengers held up the show for everyone, but once we were called we were on our way fast! Read Less
Carnival Inspiration Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 1.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0
Rates 2.0 0.0

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