Sail Date: January 2019
Cuba was one of the few places we had not visited in the Caribbean. That was rectified January 2019 on a five night cruise aboard the Paradise which proved to be an excellent overall experience. This ship was easy to navigate and not ... Read More
Cuba was one of the few places we had not visited in the Caribbean. That was rectified January 2019 on a five night cruise aboard the Paradise which proved to be an excellent overall experience. This ship was easy to navigate and not crowded like larger ships tend to be. Recently refurbished the public spaces and our suite were clean and bright. We had G3, one of two Grand Suites and the views and serenity was fabulous from Deck 14. Only complaint was the back cushion on sofa bed was easily toppled over and still would have loved a coffee maker like Carnival used to have in higher end suites. The food in the main dinning room was above average and offered wide choices. Staff throughout were friendly and helpful. Major drawback was lack of information regarding Cuban Visa procedure pre-cruise in a timely fashion, not detailed to week before and while the $75.00 fee per person was typical, it should have been clearly stated that the charge would be put on your room account. Both embarkation and debarkation were easy and painless. TIPS: Exchange US dollars for Canadian dollars or Euros pre cruise and receive a much better exchange rate at Havana Terminal Exchange. Also much better and personalized old car tours of Havana can be arranged via the internet (highly recommend Old Cars Havana) prior to the ship and was literally 1/3 longer and 1/2 the cost of Carnival offered excursion. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
Chose the cruise for the ports, price and duration. They have PLENTY OF AFTER MARKET CHARGES. A tumbler i bought disappeared from our room. They excursions are in line with other ships so they are extremely crowded. Lines are super ... Read More
Chose the cruise for the ports, price and duration. They have PLENTY OF AFTER MARKET CHARGES. A tumbler i bought disappeared from our room. They excursions are in line with other ships so they are extremely crowded. Lines are super long, the bathrooms were FILTHY. AND YOU COULD NOT EAT IN PEACE BECAUSE THEY HARKED THEIR WARES. They crowd you on buses like starving cattle. Ask you for tips while the cruise ship makes money off promoting these crowded unmonitored excursions. The extra fees and tips will run you another 50 minimum each. The kids aren't encouraged to attend any free activities. You can never find someone to help you. Cant find a trash can anywhere. The food is BLAND AT BEST. The food specialty areas (for example coffee and hot sandwiches) never have more than 2 workers per station for 1000s of people to discourage you from using the services due to the long waits. All extra activities like bingo are extra. The board game rooms have tons of the same few games all with missing parts. No playing cards. Underage drinking was rampant. Kids using their bubbles cards had a difficult time getting sodas from the bars and servers. You dont get a refund for money you won once they get to port. It should be your money...and i could keep going....say no to Carnival Paradise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2018
We chose this cruise because of the pictures we seen online which were a lie there was no basketball courts no movies theater and the arcade was so...small! I had a lot of fun but my two boys 14 and 16 were very much disappointed. The ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the pictures we seen online which were a lie there was no basketball courts no movies theater and the arcade was so...small! I had a lot of fun but my two boys 14 and 16 were very much disappointed. The staff was great Jurry who cleaned our room was awesome and my favorite bar waitress was Zailene she was always around when we needed a drink. We traveled with 14 of us and my sister is in a wheel chair this cruise was not for her she could only get out side to sit in a few spots, and lastly it wasn't a very clean ship a lot of broken things the toilets didn't flush but overall I had a good time with my family. Thank you for your time and I hope you find this helpful ! I forgot to mention Jamie was amazing keep her around she should move up to a bigger and newer ship I hope that's what we will be on next easter! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
So many things wrong!!! When we got in our cabin it was not set up so we did it ourselves and found that the carpet was disgusting under the beds. The very next morning we woke up with flea bites - multiple times to Guest Services only ... Read More
So many things wrong!!! When we got in our cabin it was not set up so we did it ourselves and found that the carpet was disgusting under the beds. The very next morning we woke up with flea bites - multiple times to Guest Services only got us a quick "Go to Medical". We bought the drink package and found that it was a waste of time as there were only a handful of bartenders on the deck at any given time. Most of the time it would take over 30 minutes of standing at the bar to get a drink. No one walking around! Our shore excursion was awful - billed as the "Great Race" all it had us do is walk around the worst parts of Cozumel - the snorkel part of it didn't bother to offer us a place to change into swimsuits so we didn't get to do anything. Incredible waste of money. Meals were mediocre at best - at one time only one elevator worked on our end of the ship. Painful as my mother is in a wheelchair and we had to use the elevators. One floor had construction so lots of noise. Not much to do - my grandchildren were totally bored as they are pre-teens and there isn't anything offered for them except sitting in a game room. This was absolutely the worst cruise I have ever been on. It was so bad I'm not sure I will ever take a cruise again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
I will try to do this on a day by day basis. Pre-Cruise We stayed at the Hampton Inn, Ybor. The hotel was very nice, they had a shuttle which took us to the pier and will also take you anywhere within 3 miles. We had a very nice room ... Read More
I will try to do this on a day by day basis. Pre-Cruise We stayed at the Hampton Inn, Ybor. The hotel was very nice, they had a shuttle which took us to the pier and will also take you anywhere within 3 miles. We had a very nice room and the front desk staff was very friendly. There are a few places to eat within walking distance from the hotel. The morning of the cruise, we took the shuttle to the pier at noon (our apt was 12:30-1:00). Boarding was pretty easy as we were in our room by 1:00. We met our steward (Arnold). We dropped off the carry-ons and went to lunch on the lido deck. I went to the burger station (decent burgers, great hot dogs). My wife went to the buffet. Ave CCL buffet, not bad but not great. By the time we finished lunch, our luggage had arrived. We did the lifeboat drill which went fast. We then killed a bit of time, my wife had her drink of the day. We had anytime dining which was a mistake. I strongly suggest that you sign up for a set dining time. For the anytime dining, you go to the Elation dining room, wait in a long line to get a pager then wait another 20 min to get seated. The first night was was worst, it took us an hour from when we went upstairs to when we were actually seated. The other nights were more in the 30 min range. Dining room food was "OK", they don't do the lobster tail or the filet anymore (unless you fork out an extra 20$). The food quality was down a bit from cruises we had taken in the past. My wife said she really enjoyed the duck. Since we had anytime dining, we had a different wait staff each night, although you can request to be seated in the same section (although you will have to wait longer). We ate in the main dining room 3 nights and the buffet 2 nights. The buffet was ok, nothing great but it wasn't too bad. I don't remember what time the casino and the shops opened but I don''t think it was any later then 6. The first day was a sea day, I went to the omlet station which was good as always. I have heard people mention that they were stingy on the bacon (they were). This cruise wasn't crowded so we never had an issue finding a seat on the lido deck. We just pretty much chilled out on the sea day. Roatan: They change the ships time 2x during the cruise, they change to central time the night before Roatan. The boat docked about 11:00am. It was a bit overcast and they said it had rained the day before. Other then the slight overcast, the weather was good. If you booked a CCL cruise, you will meet in the parking lot right after you go through the shopping gauntlet. If you booked with a 3rd party, you will have to leave the port compound. It's about 1/4 mile hike. My wife just went to the local beach. It will cost 14$ if you take the cable cars. My wife has limited mobility so she paid a guy 20$ to take her there and back on a trike. I am a scuba diver and I had my tour set up with Subway Watersports. They picked me up where all the other 3rd party tours left from. The diving was pretty good, although the overcast limited visibility a bit. The water was warm and the wall was pretty nice. We also did 2 small wrecks. The advantage of taking a private dive tour is the level of service. I only had 2 other divers on the boat with me. They were staying at a resort. I told the dm it had been 6yrs since my last dive so he more or less had to give 100% of his attention to me. The timing worked out well, after the 2 dives, they dropped me back off at the port with 2 hours to spare. My wife said the beach was pretty nice, she had a good time. We watched the 2 adult comedians. They were pretty good. There was a white guy Ron and a Black guy, Hank? The white guy was funnier on the 1st night but the 2nd show on the last night the black guy was a total blast. Cozumel: They changed back to eastern time on the night between Roatan and Cozumel. We docked at the International Pier. Again the CCL tours started fairly close to the end of the pier. If you are doing something 3rd party, you will have to go through a large shopping gauntlet to get to where the private tours or taxi's are. I went diving with Island Divers. Like an idiot, I paid a taxi driver $10 for a ride to the marina which I found out was 1/2 mile away ( I walked back). The dive was very nice, we had 6 people on the boat and 2 DMs. We did Palancar Gardens at about 100ft and our 2nd dive was on the Chan (not going to try to spell it), about 40ft. My wife did the Deluxe Catamaran / beach and snorkel. Her and my brother came back from that pretty lit up. Apparently slipping the bar tender a few $ makes the drinks a lot better. A warning for anyone who may be affected by this, the Mexican police were checking people's bags getting off the ship, they also had dogs. After the dive, I went right back on the ship, no reason go shopping or stop at any of the over priced bars near the pier. Final Sea day: We just chilled most of the day, I actually went down the waterslide a few times. ( I was the only 50yr old to do so!!). Disembark day. We had to be out of our rooms by 8:30 (although our steward let us keep our bags in there until 9:30) So we hung out on the lido deck until it was time to get off. Since he had mobility issues, we went down to deck 7 and had someone wheel us through line so we were off the ship and outside within 10 minutes (pays to be gimp at times). Homeland security was being a bit of a PITA so most other people were in line for over an hour. The whole operation was a bit behind schedule due to homeland security. Odds and Ends: Other passengers: Seemed to be a mixed crowd, there were some kids but not a bunch. I didn't see anyone walking around too drunk. Most nights, the decks were pretty empty by 11:30. The younger crowd may have been in the club but from what I saw, the ship went to bed early. LIdo Deck: never had a problem getting a lounge chair or a chair on the deck. Didn't see any chair logs or people 'reserving' chairs all day. Casino: It was average, it was pretty dead by midnight every night. I lost a few hundred which was about what I had budgeted. Room Service: Very efficient, we had all of our room service orders within 15 min. My only suggestion would be, if you order a pot of coffee, get 2x creamer or you will run out. Room Steward: Arnold was pretty good. We didn't really have any special requests. We only got evening turn down, no real need for the guy to be in there day and night. Entertainment: We did the adult comedians who were both pretty good. We also did the adult game show ( my team lost so no ship on a stick for me). We also participated in Quest. Overall, that night was a total blast. We did the veterans thing which I suggest you attend if you or a family member are a vet. We didn't do any of the other shows as I am not a singing and dancing fan. The Ship: It is an older, smaller ship which has it's pro's and cons. 1 of the atrium elevators was out. The ship was clean and they had already refurbed the cabins on a few of the decks. Also a smaller ship means less walking around. Luckily other than embarkation, there weren't many long lines. Usually you could walk right up to the burger station, pizza station (so / so), deli (pretty good), buffet without a wait. Odds and Ends: We rented a wheel chair for my wife. If you want to take it off the ship, it will be 135$, if you just use it on the ship it's $50. They are also very wide so it's a PITA to get around with them. Overall it was an enjoyable cruise. The only thing I didn't like was the anytime dining and the decline of food quality from cruises in the past. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
I had a wonderful time on this ship, the whole crew was very friendly including Housekeeping. There was no dissatisfaction for me the whole cruise. I love Karaoke and the two people who hosted it were two women named Kelsey & Maggie, ... Read More
I had a wonderful time on this ship, the whole crew was very friendly including Housekeeping. There was no dissatisfaction for me the whole cruise. I love Karaoke and the two people who hosted it were two women named Kelsey & Maggie, very polite hosts like the rest of the crew they will also join you in singing if you asked them. Karaoke is located in the Leonardo Lounge and the cruise has very friendly bartenders. One of my favorites is a woman named Elin, she is very friendly and a great person to talk to, she has a very bubbly personality and she makes good drinks. these 3 ladies that I have named in this review I refer them to any passenger cause they are the best and so is the whole crew! The Food Is great. they will have different nationality foods on Lido deck every once and a while along with your old fashion Hamburgers and hol dogs and fries, I never went to the formal dining cause I forgot my belt for my dress pants at home. Cozumel Mexico was great for shopping, Grand Cayman I didn't go to cause of the Mosquito's. Either way I had an amazing time. The cruise also had Single meet ups for straight & gay couples that are not ran buy any of the crew members but, I don't think anyone was interested in going to any of the meet ups when I was on the cruise I went to 2 straight single meet ups there was nobody lol and quite honeslty I think singles groups are a waste of time in my opinion. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
I booked this cruise as a birthday present for my 80 year old Mom who is mostly in a wheelchair. I broke my ankle after I booked the cruise so my Mom and I were both in wheelchairs on the cruise! The staff was so amazing and took ... Read More
I booked this cruise as a birthday present for my 80 year old Mom who is mostly in a wheelchair. I broke my ankle after I booked the cruise so my Mom and I were both in wheelchairs on the cruise! The staff was so amazing and took excellent care of us. Our room stewards, Margarita and Edgardo, went above and beyond to help us with our extra needs and all of our extra equipment. Everyone in the food area was also very helpful and always volunteered to help carry our trays and bring them to the table. The hostess, Alma, was at our side to help us so many times and was so very caring! We couldn't have done it without all of their help. The cabin was roomy and well kept and bathroom was surprisingly large for a cruise ship. The food was great and we enjoyed all of our meals. It would have been nice if the dining room was open for lunch. Overall, a great trip that was made extra special by the care and attention of the staff. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2016
We live near by and grandson was going away to his other grandmas (we home school him) so we just wanted to get away by ourselves. I am handicapped and they had a room available. Ship is OLD, OLD no upgrades except carpets and flat screen ... Read More
We live near by and grandson was going away to his other grandmas (we home school him) so we just wanted to get away by ourselves. I am handicapped and they had a room available. Ship is OLD, OLD no upgrades except carpets and flat screen TV's. Entertainment stunk left after 15 minutes ,no movie screen or Guys Burgers which are listed on the carnival website for the paradise.It had a minor upgrade in March 15.She is scheduled to go in to dry dock in FEB 18! HOPE SHE GETS UPGRADED OR SOLD!! They have been telling us for 4 to 5 years she was leaving Tampa ,no such luck. The late nite snack areas are difficult (Mexican ) For a scooter . No activates when in port for non port people.Trivia areas in the bar areas stunk badly from smoking!! The paradise replaced the inspiration which left and was upgraded. The miracle is coming to tampa but shev is not been upgrade with slides ,guys or movie screens. I just guess TAMPA DOES NOT RATE A upgraded ship. We have to go to PORT CANAVERAL!!!! Handicap room was large enough for my scooter. Door needs a door stop for scooter access when alone. Food was average Loved the old days when you had surf and turf included instead of up charging. Dinning room staff was great(we had set Dinning) Boarding and disembarkation was easy with the scooter!!! For the price it was adequate but will not go on again. MY daughters won't go again. My youngest daughter went on Spring break cruise this past march expecting a updated ship and said NEVER AGAIN!!!! Serenity pool area was nice.. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2015
First, I will start off by saying the crew absolutely make this experience wonderful! They went above and beyond to make our stay pleasant. The environment was relaxed and casual. I really can not complain about the room or staff. ... Read More
First, I will start off by saying the crew absolutely make this experience wonderful! They went above and beyond to make our stay pleasant. The environment was relaxed and casual. I really can not complain about the room or staff. However, there really is nothing for young kids to do except go in the pool. The pool is really small for the amount of guests on the ship. The food is horrendous! Dinner time is a disaster. The buffet on the Lido deck only opens one side, even though both sides are open for breakfast. There really is not much at all for the kids to eat for dinner besides pizza. This is a budget cruise at best. I will not be back with Carnival. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
I generally don't return to cruise critic after a cruise and I, and my family, are relatively tolerant of imperfection. I have been a member since 2004 and been on a fair number of cruises, most in suites and more on NCL than ... Read More
I generally don't return to cruise critic after a cruise and I, and my family, are relatively tolerant of imperfection. I have been a member since 2004 and been on a fair number of cruises, most in suites and more on NCL than Carnival. I have to say there is no comparison if you are in a suite. Do not waste the large amount of extra money, particularly on Paradise, for a suite. In order to get a fair amount of space and a balcony that could fit chairs we had to book a Grand suite which is the best cabin available. First, do not expect any kind of VIP treatment. There isn't any. I kind of assumed that going in so I was banking on the cabin being worth the fare. It , and the ship, were not up to snuff. Worst of all the coveted and rare (on Paradise) balcony smelled like raw sewage for the whole trip. I had to complain and they said they had heard that before!! Things are not clean. The robe had someone else's dirt on the collar, the surfaces were all sticky when we got there, the windows (which are easily accessible from the balcony -- I was going to clean them myself) had old drippy streaks running down them. I don't blame the stewards, I'm sure they are overworked. I can go on -- but I'm too busy coughing my lungs out from the second hand smoke in the casino which seemed to have no air conditioning or air circulation. Dining room wait staff at our table was excellent and we tipped them extra accordingly which I could tell was a shock to them as was the tip I gave our room steward. I don't think he had ever had a decent tip before. He said as much. Carnival Paradise is a tired old ship, okay for a short CHEAP cruise. This is not the ship to book if you want the suite experience. I will pony up the extra for a suite on another line where VIP means something. It's always nice to get what you think you are paying for. I wrote this so others are forewarned and don't get the major disappointment we did. Regarding service -- guest services often does not answer the phone. I had a message on the phone, tried to call them 6 times, no answer. I finally had to go to the desk and wait 15 minutes on a long line. Finally we were supposed to have priority disembarkation being in a suite and also with a wheelchair bound parent. We were completely ignored by the staff helping priority disembarkation until I steeped forward to ask several times why they were not letting us through. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2014
hi all, i am just a second time cruiser, first was in 2005 on the Miracle-it was a group of 500 Crafters hosted by TV Host -Carol DUVAL. It was a great time taking classes from her top seven guests. But my second cruise was 11/1 - ... Read More
hi all, i am just a second time cruiser, first was in 2005 on the Miracle-it was a group of 500 Crafters hosted by TV Host -Carol DUVAL. It was a great time taking classes from her top seven guests. But my second cruise was 11/1 - 11/6/2014 on the PARADISE. I traveled alone, at home I use a walker, but on ship I pushed my wheel chair (because at airports I can't walk far, so I am wheeled to the gate, and the wheel chair is more comfortable to sit in and I didn't want to bring both items. First before i get ro MY WONDERFUL CRUISE REVIEW, I would like to thank the TSA and mention what a wonderful service they offer for free. My husband was not able to fly with me (we fly SOUTHWEST out of Buffalo, NY). I was getting very anxious about airport security check etc, because you can't even hold onto your passport or boarding pass while going thru security check (also my cruise boarding pass, luggage tags etc) usually when my husband travels with me we throw everything in one carry on bag and he watches as it goes thru security to grab it right away since it also has credit cards, money and items mentioned above. It takes me longer to go thru security check by the time they check my wheel chair and MEDS etc. So all I could think of was somebody was going to grab my backpack when I couldn't get to it right away. Well TSA now has Personal Support Specialist who will stay right with you, Gladys helped me at Buffalo and she held onto my important papers, wallet etc. She made it so simple for me that my anxiety went away. She would not let me tip her, she said her job was to make me happy and do whatever I needed, she even went and got a bottle of water for me (I paid for it of course). But I am a diabetic on insulin and brought a sandwich for breakfast since we had to leave home at 4 am. She then went to whelp someone else but said she would be back to help me board the plane, and she did! My husband saw how at ease she made me that he found a TSA supervisor to tell him how wonderful the experience was for me. Then, because I left a few day earlier than the cruise embarkation date, I stayed at the MARRIOTT on N. West shore BLVD in Tampa, I have never been treated so royally and made to feel at home at a hotel before.this Marriott is beyond belief..I became known as MS PAT. NOW ONTO THE CRUISE OF A LIFE TIME.....THE PARADISE!!! My cabin steward...Alexander was a sweetheart, I stayed on Empress Deck 7 in cabin E52. Since I am partly handicapped it was so convenient because it was just a little ways to the glass elevators, also near Guest services and only one Deck below the Elation Dining room, which i loved everybody there. One note about elevators if you never cruised before...I learned the hard way on my first cruise, i could never find my cabin, I was always at wrong end of ship. So this time I only used the glass elevators and depending on what deck I got off on - I always turned the same way when I got off the elevator so I did not get disoriented. Also look at the top of the big door on way to cabin, I think they must be fire doors, mine was 712. So if I didn't see that number I knew I was not at right place and please pay attention to the ODD or EVEN signs when looking for your cabin..most helpful. Now the Elation Dining room was fantastic, the food, the service, I chose anytime dining 5:45 a 9:30 each night. I sat at table 160 every night except one night I ate at Lido buffet, because i heard the Turkey was out of this world and it was simply to die for. Best turkey I ever ate. I also had breakfast and late lunch on Lido deck, taking advantage of omelettes and corned beef on rye for the two meals. They couldn't have been any nicer to me offered to carry my plates etc, since I was pushing my wheel chair for my walker, but after my plate was filled I simply sat it in the wheel chair but did let the girls bring my hot chocolate and ice water, I try to stay as independent as I can. But they were there to help at any time along with the chefs in charge. Everyone on the whole staff/crew always smiled said hello. My light went out in bathroom and cabin steward had electricians there inless than five minutes. I just can't say enough good things about the PARADISE, crew...etc. The entertainment was fabulous, FLUFFY was my favorite! There was always something to do, even for me, there were bingo games, watching people to learn to CHA CHA, fiesta night-I stayed up until 1am. There were sail away parties, comedy shows, Vegas style shows, a type of newlywed game to watch as three couples were chosen to participate...absolutely hilarious. The cruise was as laid back, as formal, as informal, as active, as relaxing as you made it....the choices were always up to you. If I lived in Florida I would be right back on the Paradise. I learned about B2B's...back to back, you take a cruise ..disembark and go thru customs and turn right around and board sme ship for sme cruise...don't know pricing on that..i may they it next year and I would definitely cruise CARNIVAL PARADISE again   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2013
I chose a 4 day cruise out of my home area Tampa Bay Fla to see if I would enjoy Cruising. I took the Carnival Paradise to Cozumil Mexico and back to Tampa September 26-30 2013. I read alot of reviews on this site as well as others and ... Read More
I chose a 4 day cruise out of my home area Tampa Bay Fla to see if I would enjoy Cruising. I took the Carnival Paradise to Cozumil Mexico and back to Tampa September 26-30 2013. I read alot of reviews on this site as well as others and talk to alot of people that cruise on several lines prior to making my decsion and I was well aware of all the problems that Carnival had prior to my booking passage. Now I am a 56 yo male and I found that Carnival Paradise was a Tremendous ship for anyones first cruise experience. Arrival at Port of Tampa was at 1030 hours and was treated like family from that point. The Port Porters were effiecient and freindly, made sure everyone had there documents and assured any new passengers that bags would be treated with care. Inside the Terminal ALL the Carnival employees made me feel like I was the only one cruising that day even if there were several hundred already there. Check in was a breeze, Do online check in and all you do in verify documentation. A short 30 min wait and All aboard by 1130. My cabin was already clean and wating and bags arrived within an hour later. So off to Lido deck for bite of lunch. A fantasic welcome buffett of Italian food, Hot /Cold Sandwiches drinks and of course a full dessert bar. Then time to explore the Paradise, Drink in hand, I opted for the CHEERS program. about 50.00 a day for each day of the cruise includes 15 drinks gratuity included. NOTE: If you complain that you have reached your 15th drink do you really need that 16th before 0600. I do not drink alot but wanted to have a kind of insurance policy as this was vacation and I fiqured I would not be driving the boat anywhere. The Paradise was clean and inviting, I do realize that we all have different color schemes and decoration ideas but as it is someone elses property and I am a paying guest I loved it. My room steward called me by name even though we had never met before I returned to my cabin, earned points with me for that, and made sure if I needed anything to let him know. Also a quick plug for Rusti, Bartender in Atrium Bar as soon as you enter the ship, Great Personality as well as informative of Carnival and everything about the ship. Muster Drill at 1500 hours yes that is 3 pm for 40 min. Just deal with it , its international law. Then up to the Lido deck or SunDeck for Sail Away. Two hours later pass under the Skyway bridge and into the open gulf of Mexico. The trip was perfect I have no complaints. Staff and Crew of Paradise went to great lengths to ensure that everyone needs were met and exceeded. If you want a first time cruise this is the way to go. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2013
My Carnival experience turned out to be the worst vacation of my life and I have had some horrible ones. I should have known when my father was going through the security check and they asked him for his card. My father has ... Read More
My Carnival experience turned out to be the worst vacation of my life and I have had some horrible ones. I should have known when my father was going through the security check and they asked him for his card. My father has Parkinson's and it takes him while sometimes to be able to get an object in his hands. Instead of asking Can I help you with it? the gentleman (and I use the term most sarcastically) pushed my dad's wheelchair out of the way and said Just get out of the way. I should have taken that as a sign. The trip only gets worse from there. The conditions of the boat were horrible and the floors were often wet or coated in spilled food in the dining rooms on the Lido deck. I complained that I have slipped several times on the floor and the staff just shrugged at me and continued their conversation. It wasn't until I fell and a bunch of cruise goers had to help me up that the staff even took notice to clean up what appears to be dressing I slipped in spilled all over the floor. My nephew suffered cuts and bruises on his knees because of the same indifference to safety. We were part of a wedding party and supposed to be seated together in the dinning room. This trip was planned for 9 months ahead of time. Carnival inevitably screwed it up again and kept bumping people off of our wedding party in the dining room causing us to have to be split up for all but one night of the cruise. Finally, the disembarkation process was the worst. A porter was supposed to arrive at our room to help us the morning of disembarkation. This was part of the wedding party package that was paid for. The night before we confirmed this with both Guest Services and a supervisor because so much about this cruise was screwed up. At 8:15, no porter. 8:30, no porter. We called and he was on his way. 8.45, no porter. 9 am we called again and they sent someone. We sat in the lobby for over an hour waiting to disembark with our party. Guest Services lied and told us our party has already left the ship and we needed to do the same when in fact we were speaking to them on the phone and they said they were still waiting to be taken to meet us. By that time, I called Carnival customer service and loudly explained my situation to the customer service manager. Amazingly, the staff (all 5 that were standing around doing nothing but chatting with each other) were able to help us. It still took another 45 minutes to get the rest of our party (that was supposedly already off the boat) off the boat to meet us. Finally, once we were off the boat, we moved our bags and my father in his wheelchair to a designated handicap pick up area and I left to get the car. I returned to someone yelling, yes YELLING, at my father to move out of the way that he wasn't supposed to be there and he had to get all the bags and move NOW. Are you for real? With all of this drama going on, we had to contend with surly crew members, a less than helpful Guest Services staff, rooms that were either so cold my nephew had to sleep in two pairs of sweats and a hoodie and socks or rooms so hot they were uninhabitable most of the trip. The food was mediocre to poor at best and requests for no cheese on burgers and small special requests were greeted with a very poor attitude. We found the crew to be less than helpful and acted as if it was an imposition to help or do their job. Many of the crew were happier to stand around and converse than actually do their jobs. Finally, there seemed to be a sewage issue in many of the cabins for the entire trip. The smell permeated the hallways and was very unpleasant. When I asked about this, the staff shrugged at me and walked away. There were some amazing staff members aside from the horrible ones. The standout staff members were Ketut (our room attendant who tried to fix the temperature issue desperately), the kids club staff were excellent and always amazing to my nephew, and the dining room staff of the Elation were pretty good. They had no hand in the wedding seating disaster and made every accommodation to try and seat the party together. The rest of the staff needs to be replaced.   Read Less
Sail Date: February 2013
Where should I start? Let see. I'm not satisfied with my cruise. The fun ship? Really was not that fun for me. On Feb 4th I took a cruise to Cozumel/Cayman. This was my second cruise ever first with Carnival and most likely my last ... Read More
Where should I start? Let see. I'm not satisfied with my cruise. The fun ship? Really was not that fun for me. On Feb 4th I took a cruise to Cozumel/Cayman. This was my second cruise ever first with Carnival and most likely my last with your company. There were issues from Day 1 and continue throughout the trip. I do have a physical disability in which I use a small Manuel sport style wheelchair a week before my cruise I because I would be traveling alone. I called up carnival to arrange an airport transfer in which I told the customer service representative I was in a wheelchair and needed accessible accommodations when I got to Tampa. I met the Carnival greeter which was very nice. However they told me they didn't have an accessible bus to take me to the port which I found to be very odd that you guys don't have a bus with a ramp like hotels or airports. She said no worries we will call a cab after about 45mins to an hour wait a United Cab shows up with a ramp finally I thought I'm on the way to the port. The Cab guy had a gripe about yellow cab and carnival that I had to hear about while he loaded my wheelchair up in his cab. He was angry and was going back and forth arguing with the carnival supervisor about money no professionalism what so ever. He finally got me to the port. At this point, I'm not really that excited to take my first cruise with carnival fearing what's next. So I get on boat the Paradise which is an older boat and it shows. I requested 6 plus months ago that I needed an accessible room. Maybe its just an older boat my little wheelchair could barely fit through the door and the rest room was really small although Guess Services Fernando said that my room was accessible and the rest rooms on the ships are smaller like that. I could barely get my chair in the bathroom this is really unacceptable took a cruise a year ago on the Bahamas Celebration which is older than the Paradise. There bathroom was bigger and accommodating. I don't enjoy crawling on the floor of a bathroom I shouldn't have to do that to take a shower or to get to the toilet because my chair can barely fit in the bathroom. I'm a human being I don't enjoy the inhumane feeling I got and you that are reading this wouldn't like that feeling either I hope your newer boats are in better condition and most importantly the facilities are more accommodating for people with wheelchairs . Our first stop the Cayman. Was anxious to go on my excursion went to Guess Services and the lady said I could not leave the boat because it was a tender port and for someone to help me down the stairs to the boat would be a liability so now it's like one problem after the other. I'm feeling like a second class citizen now. So the Cayman Island was a no go for me...and totally boring day on the ship. They assured me that I will be able to leave the ship in Cozumel which I did and had a good time which at this point I really needed. Coming back Tampa airport once again I found myself waiting and waiting for accessible vehicle to take me to the airport. This time after an hour wait the bus with a lift came. I know I just mentioned the bad first impressions are everything, and when you experienced what I've experienced the bad is all you have to really go on. Will I travel with carnival again? Probably, not. I feel that Carnival is really not accommodating to people with disabilities and I could really understand that some ports are tendered but should be alternative fun activities on the boat while the boat is docked or a better way to get people with wheelchairs off the boat and on their excursion. My recommendations to you, Make sure all your ships rest rooms especially the ones for people with disabilities are up to date and spacious I don't like to crawl on the floor in the bathroom especially when my wheelchair is really small. I have a bad taste in my mouth from this experience and I'm not happy because Carnival is not fun for people with Physical disabilities. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
I took my two teenagers (19 & 17) on a quick Thanksgiving break, and ended up on the Carnival Paradise because of cost and location. I've been on cruises with Celebrity and Royal Caribbean, both 5 star ships, so wasn't ... Read More
I took my two teenagers (19 & 17) on a quick Thanksgiving break, and ended up on the Carnival Paradise because of cost and location. I've been on cruises with Celebrity and Royal Caribbean, both 5 star ships, so wasn't expecting much. Needless to say it at times exceeded my expectations, other times it didn't. Embarkation was easy and fast; we had been upgraded to an Owner's Suite, so had the VIP status. Checked in about 1:15. Having never cruised out of Tampa things were a little complicated on parking, etc., but since we have moved to the area next time it won't be. Because of orthopedic issues I did Valet parking, definitely worth the price. Check In was a breeze and we were on the ship in less than 20 minutes with the VIP status. That being said there were no lines anywhere excepted to get our picture taking. Even without VIP we would have probably been done in 30 minutes. The cruise wasn't full, but either way it didn't seem to crowded. Out room was nice; the room was ready when we got on the ship. Guest Services wasn't either very busy or not at all. Never had more than 2 people working so debarkation day they only had 2 people working, so it took almost an hour to get your account settled. Overall it was an OK trip, my daughter who was 17 enjoyed it but wished more of the teens went to the O2 club. Food at the buffet was so/so. Was not that good so rarely ate there. Usually was cold, hard or not that tasty. Kids mainly at the grill which was OK. We had seating in the Destiny dining room. Never had a bad meal there and service was great. Even with sharing with 2 tables of 10 people and then 2 booths of 6 I never had bad service. The staff always remembered our tastes, and since my kids are HF Autistic they ate the same every meal, they always had their meal waiting for them. Housekeeping was good, bartenders good. Had an issue with all the smoking. Not very good ventilation so could always tell when my neighbor was smoking on his balcony (even when indoors). Also smoke poured out of the casino so that you couldn't get off the elevators without smelling and walking through it. Ship itself seemed clean; although there was at least 1 elevator out on each bank. At times had to wait 10-15 minutes for one. Spa was good, but expensive (but loved the massage and body seaweed wrap). We did a taxi tour in Grand Cayman, picked it up on deck. Tour guide was great and was on $20 (as compared to $50 on ship). On Cozumel we did a ship tour since it was the first time on the island, had a good tour guide, got a great history of the Mayan history and the island. Definitely found that you don't do shopping at the port, you need to go out a little more to get the best deals. Overall, even though the trip wasn't bad, I wouldn't do the ship again unless I got another real good price. We were spoiled by our first cruise with Celebrity and the service there. Since the Paradise is the only ship permanently in my home port I will probably end up on the ship again, but expectations will continue to be low. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2011
This was my 12th cruise, my 9th with Carnival, and my first time on the Paradise. 2 adults (in our 50's), 2 children (10 & 11) and my wife's service dog Duncan. Our previous cruise was last year on the Carnival Splendor (no, ... Read More
This was my 12th cruise, my 9th with Carnival, and my first time on the Paradise. 2 adults (in our 50's), 2 children (10 & 11) and my wife's service dog Duncan. Our previous cruise was last year on the Carnival Splendor (no, not during the fire), which was our favorite ship so far. I will make a few comparisons to the Splendor in the review.We met our friends at the port at 11:45. They had flown down the day before from Washington. Since we had our service dog with us, embarkation was quick and easy, as we were handled through Special Services, and we were on the ship in about 20 minutes.Being a 3 day cruise, we didn't expect it to be relaxing, and we were right. Always something to do on the ship. We first checked with Guest Services as to the location of Duncan's litter box (it was in a great location, roped off and out of the way on the Lido Deck). We then went down to our cabin on the Main deck. It was still a bit early, but we went to the room to drop off Duncan's stuff which we had to carry on. Immediately met our room steward Roy, who was fantastic. He said he would lock the door as soon as the cabin was vacuumed to protect our stuff. After the first meeting, he always called us by name. This was the last cruise of his 6 month contract, and after it he was flying home to his family in Indonesia for a 2 month vacation.Then up to the buffet. Food was very good. We preferred the additional lunch areas on the Carnival Splendor (Tandoori area, Burrito bar...), but the variety was still great. Everything was clean, the service was friendly and everyone was smiling.The cabins on the Fantasy class ships, including the Paradise, have plenty of storage space, and are roomy for 2 people. With 4 people and the 2 bunk beds pulled down in the evening, moving around the cabin is much more difficult. Layout of the cabins on the newer ships such as the Splendor is much better, having a sofa/bed as your 3rd bed, and 1 bunk directly above the sofa/bed. But heck, you're not in your cabin that much anyway!Dinners were great in the main dining room. We had early seating in the Elation dining room, at table #100. Service was excellent. Food was very good. We especially loved the pork ribs, the lobster and shrimp, the stuffed mushrooms, and of course, the warm chocolate melting cake. And one of our girls LOVED the cheeseburgers at the grill, wanting them for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Probably our least favorite item was the flat iron steak, which was very tough. Years ago, Carnival instead had N.Y. strip steak, which was always great, but I'm sure it was replaced due to the cost. On the Lido deck in the grill area, my wife loved the grilled chicken breasts. Many of the desserts on the Lido were just so-so.Room service was fine. Orders were correct and in a reasonable time.My daughters are 10 and 11, and had a great time. This was their third cruise. They enjoyed the pools, pool slide, hot tubs (though there were too many adults in them drinking), and the mini golf. They weren't too pleased with Camp Carnival, as they are at the upper age of the group (Camp Carnival is for 2-11 year olds), and they were bored there. They made friends on the ship quickly though and were always busy.For entertainment, we enjoyed most of the music onboard. I saw one of the R-rated comedy shows, and didn't enjoy it much. Saw SHOUT in the main showroom, and even though we had seen it previously on the Splendor, we really enjoyed it. We also liked playing the trivia games. Ensenada was uneventful. Been there so many times we probably wouldn't have even gotten off the ship if not to let Duncan see some grass. Just did a little shopping in the port area, and then got back on the ship.Disembarkation was easy. With my wife being disabled, and having Duncan, we could have been in the first group off, but instead waited until the last group with our friends. Why rush off when you can sit and relax on the ship for 2 more hours? We had no long lines to contend with. Getting off the Splendor was much worse last year, sort of like a cattle call.We were on the ship during one of the weeks of spring break. I was a little concerned about previous review I had read about everyone being drunk. Yes, there were many college age cruisers, and yes there was probably more drinking, but, with a few exceptions, MOST people were still pretty well behaved.One interesting thing...I have read some reviews which stated security does nothing about noise complaints. I was heading back to my cabin late one night with Duncan (probably after 1 a.m.), and saw a security officer outside a cabin talking to the people in it. I of course slowed down to hear what was being said. The security officer told them this was their 2nd complaint, and if they got one more, their sail-and-sign cards would be deactivated for all future purchase (such as BOOZE), and they would receive letters from Carnival telling them they would be banned from any future Carnival family of cruises. The cruisers complained that this was only their first warning that night (the second night of the cruise), and the security officer responded that complaints are not figured daily, but as a whole! 2 complaints was the limit! I'm glad to see security was taking this seriously.Things I liked most about the cruise: Friendliness of the staff, cleanliness of the ship, great food (lobster!), great service, free 24-hour room service (hear that, Royal Caribbean?), and how well the crew treated us with Duncan (ESPECIALLY Thelma in Guest Services - she was FANTASTIC)!And speaking of Duncan, thanks to all of our fellow passengers and the crew who treated Duncan AS a service dog, almost always ASKING FIRST if it would be all right if they pet him. As we told them, so long as I was walking with him, or my wife was in the wheelchair with him, it would be okay to pet him. But if my wife was walking with him, not to interfere with him as he was working. And thanks to the crew for placing the litter box for him in a nice out-of-the-way location, and in a non-smoking area. Previously on the Elation, the litter box was on a main smoking deck, and we always found it filled with cigarette butts.Things I liked least about the cruise: the flat iron steak in the dining room, some desserts were bland on the Lido deck, the 1 comedy show we saw, and Ensenada. I wish there were another port a 3-day cruise could visit, but realize that isn't possible on the west coast. All-in-all, none of this put any kind of damper on our enjoyment.Looking forward to going again next year on the Carnival Splendor! Duncan's 4th cruise, and my 10th, meaning we finally get free laundry on the ship!Richard Read Less
Carnival Paradise Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.9
Dining 4.0 3.7
Entertainment 4.5 3.7
Public Rooms 3.5 3.9
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.7
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.5 3.8
Enrichment 4.0 3.3
Service 4.5 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 3.0 4.2

Find a Carnival Paradise Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise