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Cruise Ratings
13,295
7,740
4,974
2,741
1,595
Sail Date: December 2018
I took this cruise with over 20 members of a service organization that I belong to. I'm not a huge cruise fan - I would not have booked it for myself, but I knew that I would have a good time with my group. I've taken a couple of Carnival ... Read More
I took this cruise with over 20 members of a service organization that I belong to. I'm not a huge cruise fan - I would not have booked it for myself, but I knew that I would have a good time with my group. I've taken a couple of Carnival cruises before and one through NCL, and if I ever do another one, it will be with a truly premier line. But, this cruise did exceed my expectations. I've been to Galveston many times, so I did not do any sightseeing before or after the cruise. Embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly. No complaints with either process. The ship itself was pretty nice, as was the cabin. My cabin had a balcony with 2 chairs and a side table, so it was nice to be able to see the water. The curtain was heavy enough to block out light, so that was good for sleeping. The only thing that was a bit of a pain was the lack of plugs in the room. There was one outlet with 2 plugs on the vanity (one plug is 220, but it also works as a regular plug-fyi). There is another plug in the bathroom on the light fixture, but it only works while the light is on. The only real complaint I had was due to the location of my cabin - it was on the floor directly over the major entertainment areas, and a band played directly below us most nights. It was very loud! I had ear plugs, which helped, but I will know if I ever cruise again to check this out before I pick my room. The food was overall better than what I expected. I mainly ate in the dining room, because I'm not a buffet fan. Portions in the dining room are not large, but you get 3 courses. It was always plenty of food for me, but I'm not a big eater - you can always order more if you want it. I would recommend not ordering any of the fish fillet options except the salmon - they all looked dry and overcooked. Also, in addition to the early or late seating for the dining room, you can choose open seating option. Our group chose this, which allowed us to eat when the time was convenient for us. There are a few times when the buffets are the only option. The pizza was pretty good, and the burger place was delicious! I also liked the taco bar. I never ate at the other buffet lines. There are lots of activities to keep you busy. Carnival has something going all hours of the day - trivia games, various bands, casino (very smoky), shows, etc. The cruise director, TJ, was lots of fun. The activities for the day are printed and sent to your room, but I recommend using Carnival's HUB app. It lists all of the activities, dining options, shore excursions, and a ship map. For a $5 fee, you can also use the chat feature. It is a great tool to keep up with your party if you don't have international service on your cell phone. I had really good service throughout the cruise. Almost everyone was very friendly and helpful. I booked my excursions through a separate party (Shore Trips). I did not even know this was possible, but it is! If you use these, they are usually less crowded than through the cruise line. They were great! We did a dune buggy tour in Cozumel, and I highly recommend it! Overall, I was pleased with this cruise. Carnival is good for people who are flexible, don't mind crowds, like a lot of options for activities and it's good for kids. It was a good option for our large group, because it allowed people to pick and choose what they wanted to do throughout the day. If you want something quiet and top notch, I would choose a different cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Embarkation and Debarkation went very smoothly. The ship was great and the movies played at night were awesome. The entertainment was amazing. For our excursion we went on a taxi which showed us around the Bahamas and took us to different ... Read More
Embarkation and Debarkation went very smoothly. The ship was great and the movies played at night were awesome. The entertainment was amazing. For our excursion we went on a taxi which showed us around the Bahamas and took us to different destinations around. We then went to the beach and the water was crystal clear and they were playing some good music. Our waiters at the restaurant, Pudjiono, Daniel and Putra were amazing! They were very kind and Pudjiono even learned our names and remembered our drinks from the night before. They were great people. Our room stewardess Odin was also spectacular, he always greeted us by name and cleaned our room during our chosen hours and did a great job. The activities on the ship were okay. The show during dinner was very exciting. Overall the cruise was amazing. The whole crew was full of great people and the fun was very good. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
I have sailed on Holland America, Norwegian and now Carnival. This was my 50th birthday cruise to Ensenada Mexico. It left from Long Beach, CA so was easy to get to from Oregon and it was a short cruise which was ideal since I had several ... Read More
I have sailed on Holland America, Norwegian and now Carnival. This was my 50th birthday cruise to Ensenada Mexico. It left from Long Beach, CA so was easy to get to from Oregon and it was a short cruise which was ideal since I had several friends and family coming along. The ship was older and smaller than previous cruises I have been on. There were things to do on board during our "at sea" day (the first full day even though Ensenada was close by). However, none of us could participate in anything because for the first 24 hours of the cruise the ship was pitching and rolling so much we could barely stand upright. I had my parents with me and some of them are beginning to have mobility issues... I know the ship can't control the ocean and I'm not sure what I would have expected Carnival to do, it was just a difficulty we weren't expecting and that I had not experienced before. Aside from the curve ball mother nature threw us, the cruise was "ok". The room was fine but it would have been nice to have something other than the bed to sit on, and a coffee maker would have been appreciated. The food was marginal - the buffet was not large, there were only two other main dining restaurants and we were assigned to one of them. The manu was limited and the portions were small. There was a sandwich bar, a pizza bar - the quality of thes was so-so. There was also a burger place near the pool - that was a GOOD burger! I think my biggest frustration was the service. On previous cruises, the staff treated us like we were the first and only passengers on the ship giving us attention like they wanted us to have a good time. On this Carnival cruise, the staff were just going through the motions and actually avoided eye contact to get out of serving us on a few occasions! Except for the people that wanted us to buy overpriced stuff on board... For the shore excursion we were going to just go into town, but on the bus on the way, they talked us into going to Bufadora and the Flea Market. I'm really glad we did. It was a lot of fun even though in the market there's a lot of pressure from the vendors to buy their wares. All in all this cruise was pretty much what I intended it to be - a quick getaway with a group to celebrate my birthday, but Carnival cruise line in general left me a little disappointed when compared to other cruise lines I have experienced. I can't say I will jump at the chance to book another carnival cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
I have been on cruises before with Carnival. So, I like Carnival but sometimes its a hit or miss on some cruises if you dont have good staff, So let me kind of tell you the bad news first, 1. When we arrived at the port we were ... Read More
I have been on cruises before with Carnival. So, I like Carnival but sometimes its a hit or miss on some cruises if you dont have good staff, So let me kind of tell you the bad news first, 1. When we arrived at the port we were ready to hand over our luggage to the folks to take it to the ship. However the porters said we dont work for the cruise line but if we take your luggage for you if you give us a tip. We talked to the Carnival representative and they said that our cruise price included luggage transfer to the boat. Apparently the porters were trying to shake down customers for more money. We noticed this problem only at the Long Beach port but not at other ports where the service was excellent. We had to bring our own luggage on board since it appeared if we did not pay...we may not get our luggage if the porter wanted to be mean. He appeared to look like he could screw us since there is no logging of our luggage or proof we gave it to the porter, That was a real drag. 2. My daughter won a prize at giveway for guest in the main lounge. The Cruise Director said it was 200 dollar value. But the stuff in the package was crap necklace that you get for free at the shops. Plus there was a 25 off 175 dollar coupon. The other gifts were free excursions and other valuable gifts. The Cruise director took the cabin number down to investigate but never followed up. The prize was more of an insult to us and the director did not seem to care. This is unlike other cruise directors on other boats. Her assistant also did not care and told her to trade the gift to another person. The gift was worthless so there was nothing to trade. Note this behavior never occurred with other cruise directors who seem more attentive to customers. 3. Cabin service on main deck portholes was horrible. Beds were suppose to be separate and we had to push the steward to make the change even though we booked the rooms that way. We found globs of air on the new towels. When we were moved to a new cabin due to noise issues (see below), the stewards were excellent. This was on the Rivera floor 4. 4. Food was ok. 5. Service at the dinning was excellent from the entire staff. 6. Comedy club and night entertainment was very good, Like I said, most Carnival cruises are very good, Sometimes you don't get a good cruise director or cabin steward and that kind of blows most of your cruise, The real problem is the luggage situation where the porters are trying to intimidate/extort money from passengers when that service should be part of the cruise package, Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
We chose this cruise solely based on price. We've been on dozens of cruises with all the major cruise lines. We knew going in that it was an older ship, and mainly just wanted a nice few days away from the cold weather. There were some ... Read More
We chose this cruise solely based on price. We've been on dozens of cruises with all the major cruise lines. We knew going in that it was an older ship, and mainly just wanted a nice few days away from the cold weather. There were some things about this cruise that pleasantly surprised me and other things that were disappointing. Embarkation The embarkation was one of the easiest we've ever done. They let you schedule a time to arrive at the port. Miami is a pretty easy port to navigate. We walked right up and a woman scanned our pre-printed tickets and directed us onto the ship. There was no waiting or anything. They said our rooms wouldn't be ready until around 2pm so we went to the buffet. At around 1:15pm they called out to everyone and said our rooms were ready. Stateroom There were 2 of us in an interior stateroom. The room is definitely dated, but looks pretty much like every other interior stateroom on every cruise ship. It was cramped and tiny but I thought it was somewhat larger than other ships we've been on. The beds were pretty comfortable. The bathroom also seemed slightly larger than on other ships. The towels seemed kind of old and had stains on them. There was a handheld shower faucet and the pressure was pretty good. The walls are pretty thin so we could always hear people talking and kids running around outside. Entertainment/Activities The cruise director's name was Kevin. He looked kind of like Gordon Ramsay. He was pretty funny, but he made way too many announcements over the intercom. Every 5 minutes we'd have to stop our conversation to listen to a long announcement about bingo or whatever. We didn't really go to many of the shows. The guy in the piano bar was great. He played a wide variety of stuff (not just Piano Man and Sweet Caroline). They have a number of bands throughout the ship and I thought all of them were fantastic. We played trivia a couple of times. It's not the typical trivia but more geared towards pop culture (e.g. Friends trivia, etc.). Food The food was excellent on this ship. They have a 24 hour pizzeria and deli which had great fresh pizza. There was also a 24 hour self-serve soft serve ice cream machine. The buffet had a different theme everyday (e.g. Italian, French, Caribbean, etc.). On the whole, the food there was decent. They also had a great mexican place with really good tacos and burritos. And then there was a Guy Fieri burger place. Aside from the constant Guy Fieri catchphrases blasting from the TV, I thought the food there was excellent. The food in the main dining room was a little underwhelming in my opinion. Not the greatest quality, but not bad. They seemed to seat everybody at giant shared tables. I find on most other cruise lines, they tend to have smaller tables where you can have a private table. They did have smaller tables upon request but they seemed very reluctant to give them out even though they always seemed to be empty. Ports Our cruise went to Key West and Cozumel. We arrived in Key West around 8am and left early around 1pm. I really like Key West and wish we had more time there, but it was nice to walk around and eat some key lime pie. In Cozumel, we arrived around noon and left around 9pm. Most of the beaches close around 5pm so there wasn't much to do there after that unless your into getting blasted at Senor Frogs. Overall Overall, it was nice cruise. The worst part of the trip was that the entire ship smelled of sewage (especially in the hallways and staterooms). It was super gross. I think they need to take this ship out of commission for a few weeks and fix their sewage problems. Other than that, I ate a ton of food, got some sun, and relaxed a lot. So I can't complain. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
The food selection was good and you could eat as much as you wanted, which I did. The drinks had a generous amount of alcohol in them, which was nice. I was on floor 1 (close to the bottom of the ship), and had a very nice, clean room. The ... Read More
The food selection was good and you could eat as much as you wanted, which I did. The drinks had a generous amount of alcohol in them, which was nice. I was on floor 1 (close to the bottom of the ship), and had a very nice, clean room. The room service did a great job of cleaning and supplying plenty of towels. I really appreciated coming back to my room to a made bed. There was plenty of entertainment, however if you wanted a nice relaxing swim in one of the pools, it wasn't going to happen. There were just too many kids to enjoy being in the pool or even the hot tubs for that matter. Casino was nice, but only open certain hours of the day. I mainly enjoyed the movie matinees on the Lido deck (floor 9). Good movie selections! Overall, good experience for it being my first cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
My wife and I wanted a short cruise within an easy drive of our home near Wilmington, NC. While we normally cruise with Celebrity we were pleasantly surprised with our experience aboard the Carnival Ecstasy. We normally cruise in a ... Read More
My wife and I wanted a short cruise within an easy drive of our home near Wilmington, NC. While we normally cruise with Celebrity we were pleasantly surprised with our experience aboard the Carnival Ecstasy. We normally cruise in a balcony stateroom but since they were in short supply we opted for an ocean view stateroom since it was only a 5 day cruise, I really missed having a chair to sit on but this was a minor inconvenience and not a problem. The parking and check-in was a real plus, very efficient. We were quite surprised when the parking lot attendant told us that there would be no charge for handicapped parking, this represented a quick $100 savings. Breakfast service in the Lido was very good, there was never more than 2 people waiting in line for omelets or eggs to order, I would have liked fresh pineapple but I made do with the other fruit offerings. Bakery items were very good. Guy's burgers on the Lido deck were among the best I have experienced on land or sea, always freshly made with plenty of fries and toppings. We opted for dinner at the 8:15 seating, the wait staff were excellent, very personable and knowledgeable of the menu offerings. I would have liked to have had better cocktail and wine service, it was necessary to ask the waiter for beverage service. I found the food offerings were varied and suitable to my tastes. The seafood offerings of Mahi Mahi and Salmon were above average. The entertainment was well above average, the Cruise Director Leon was outstanding, I have been on more than a dozen cruises and Leon was the best and most involved cruise director that I have experienced. Leon hosted a tribute to veterans which was a very emotional and moving ceremony which was enjoyed by the more than 100 attendees. I enjoyed the casino, however, the three card poker table was rarely busy, since I enjoy playing with 4 or 5 other players, I didn't play as much as I would have liked (probably saved some money). The disembarking was very slow, this was probably caused by too many people opting to carry off their luggage, which clogged the elevators and caused long lines on deck 7, this combined with those that checked luggage created delays for the carry off folks as well as the checked luggage people. Bottom line, I enjoyed my Carnival cruise and will certainly cruise Carnival again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
Never going back--even if free So there are good things about this cruise. 1. SOME of the staff were very nice.The guy who cleaned our room was amazing-super friendly and always greeted us with a smile. The girls working the ... Read More
Never going back--even if free So there are good things about this cruise. 1. SOME of the staff were very nice.The guy who cleaned our room was amazing-super friendly and always greeted us with a smile. The girls working the excursions. . BUT we had a few VERY BAD THINGS. 1. The FOOD WAS HORRIBLE across the board. It was like bad, cheap mall food and there was hardly any available. The food at dinner was a little better, but two nights, I didn't even eat because it was so yucky. Cold, soggy, smelled "off", and it was obvious that it was premade. In the Mardi Gras room, I tried to eat there twice with no luck. Bad service--one guy got really mad that I didn't want coffee and the next day the guy kept bringing me the wrong food. They tried hard, but it was bad. Room service was lackluster and they charged for everything. 2. There wasn't much to do on the ship except drink and since so much of the ship was filled with smokers, it was bad. 3. They didn't explain anything to us and when we asked we got yelled at. We were very confused much of the time (it was our first cruise)*** come back to this. 4. Excursions were very expensive and they were super unorganized--getting off the ship etc. It was chaotic. 5. The "safety" thing was just the cruise director taking roll and telling us what shows were coming up. And he mentioned that kids had armbands. We would have been screwed had anything happened. 6. Our stateroom was FREEZING. I had on three shirts, a sweatshirt, two pairs of thick socks, a hat, gloves and a scarf and got under the covers. There was no way to warm up. The shower was lukewarm. So we FROZE. It was warmer on the deck in the rain and 50 degrees. I caught a really bad cold and was coughing. It was so uncomfortable. When I asked the man who cleaned our room he said that was how it was. It was like camping, outside, in the winter. This was probably the thing that was the hardest to deal with. 7. The internet for $59 was super slow and you couldn't even access the app without it. Only one person can be on it. 8. The hallway and room smelled like rotting feces at all times. (E78) 9. We were by the atrium where they had parties and loud music and games from early morning til midnight or later. THE WORST WAS this one lady at the guest services. We asked her how to disembark on day three--we thought we should know. She started immediately yelling at us to "turn on the tv!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" when I explained that on the Carnival TV channel there was only ads and a cartoon explaining how to put on a life jacket she got more angry. She told us to TURN ON THE TV!!!! IT WAS ON THERE. Then I suggested that the rooms should have a book or something with information like hotels do---she got upset again. She demanded to know why we were confused. I said that for example we had no idea where to eat or anything and that's when she lost her mind. She literally said, "JESUS CHRIST!!!" and then called me a B**ch Then put her hand up and refused to answer any questions. We were then AFRAID to ask anyone anything. I was in tears at that point because I hadn't eaten all day (due to the lack of food choices) and just wanted an explanation of what time we could leave on Friday morning. There was no need to be nasty. I even explained that it was our first cruise. I left in tears. I asked a man in the hallway to see a manager and he told me that there was no such thing on Carnival cruises and that guest services were the boss. I explained what happened and he said that was up to them how to treat people. Then I said, "so you could verbally abuse me and no one would do anything, not even the captain?" He confirmed. I was crying. I went outside to sit on deck nine to calm down, because there was nothing we could do to get help. I got locked outside for 45 minutes. :( I don't know if I will get a lawyer because of he behavior, but honestly verbally abusing guests is UNCALLED FOR. Also she NEVER told us how to do anything. I went down there at 3 am and asked someone else. To end on a good note, the guys in the dining hall were amazing. Once we figured out where to go and went there every night at 8:15, they went above and beyond to make us feel welcomed. Sadly this was our honeymoon and because the stateroom smelling like poop, being about 50 degrees, and being called names and cursed out. It ruined it for us. I am drafting a letter---the old fashioned way and mailing it to them. I hope they refund at least half or it, but even if they do, we aren't going back. It was really, really, really bad. PROS: some of the staff, and the people we met, the comedy shows were good, the entertainment shows were good. CONS: Food, some of the staff, freezing & stinky rooms, no hot water in shower, general confusiong, loud parties outside our room. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We booked this cruise after talking to a travel agent and weighing options. I have three children- 10 years, 7 and 1. We wanted something family friendly as we were traveling with a one year old. My kids love to swim, even the 1 year old ... Read More
We booked this cruise after talking to a travel agent and weighing options. I have three children- 10 years, 7 and 1. We wanted something family friendly as we were traveling with a one year old. My kids love to swim, even the 1 year old and we knew we would spend our time at the pools and hot tubs. Well we learned when it was too late that if your kid is not potty trained they cannot go in the pools- even in a swim diaper! This was strictly enforced and the life guards stopped us before we could get in the water on day one. There were NO activities for our one year old. There was a playground he could play on but wasn’t made for kids younger than 5. He obviously played on it but we had to watch him to make sure he didn’t fall off the sides. The location of the playground was tough as it was on the side of the ship and windy which made it cold. Basically our family was divided the entire time as my husband and I had to take turns walking the baby around inside because our baby would cry if he saw water and wanted to get it and couldn’t. We spent a lot of time walking up and down stairs as my one year old found that amusing. We were able to do a Dr Seuss read along play that lasted 30 minutes maybe. There was baby sitting offered but for added money only and honestly I just spent a ton of money getting on the cruise and wasn’t going to pay more for him to sit in a room with someone he didn’t know and honestly this was supposed to be a family trip where we are together doing stuff! There was a kids playroom for kids to play that were signed up for their camp program and I asked if I could take my baby in there and stay and play with him and they told me no I couldn’t do that. I asked for options for him then as he couldn’t swim and couldn’t be in the playroom and they told me there weren’t any options. There were staff on the ship that didn’t know babies couldn’t enter the pool yet when I questioned the policy and why it wasn’t advertised better and the answer I kept getting was it was in the contract. Obviously fine print as many staff didn’t even know! My 10 and 7 year old had a good time as they swam literally as much as possible. They went to the night club once but mostly they wanted to swim so I can’t say too much about those services. One mom I did talk to said she was disappointed with the kids program as they didn’t take them to the pool to swim, just inside activities and her kids liked being outside. There was a walking track and shuffle board but it was at the back of the ship near the smoke exhaust and that didn’t seem like the best lay out. The kids club area and arcade were also located poorly where you had to walk through the casino and smoke to get there. The rooms were bigger than we thought they would be- the beds were comfy and the food was good. Staff were super nice. They kept things very clean. If we didn’t have small children I would rate this cruise higher but I feel completely mislead and taken advantage of. I believe it’s poor business practice knowing the ages of the people signing up and not going over the restrictions for those kids ahead of time. I don’t want another family to go through what we did! Wait until your kids are older before you book! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
This cruise was celebrating our 36th Wedding Anniversary. And, we were not disappointed. We chose cabin 1103 by the Spa. Which was an excellent choice. The balcony and room were perfect for two people. And, best of all, we had an ... Read More
This cruise was celebrating our 36th Wedding Anniversary. And, we were not disappointed. We chose cabin 1103 by the Spa. Which was an excellent choice. The balcony and room were perfect for two people. And, best of all, we had an absolutely WONDERFUL steward. His name is "Made". Pronounced Ma-Dee. He is from Bali. From the moment we entered our room we felt pampered. Not only that, bu Made went the extra mile and cleaned our room twice a day. Each time he would make wonderful animals with towels that were just beautiful and enchanting. Made went the extra mile to ensure our anniversary cruise was the best it could be. He went above and beyond to ensure we had ice, fresh linens, information on happenings on the ship, Water, sodas, and our Anniversary decorations. Made took pride in his work, and it showed. My wife and I became friends with Made, and hope one day to visit him in his home country, Bali. Carnival Valor, if you read this review, you should give Made a promotion and a raise. He's earned it in my book. The food in the steak house was absolutely AWESOME. If you go, you owe it to yourself to eat there at least once. You'll be glad you did. Make reservations ahead of the cruise, because spots fill fast. The food in the regular dining was also good. Our dining room was the Washington. Our waiter/server was Ricky. Ricky was fantastic! We never wanted for anything, or had to ask for anything. It was like Ricky could read our minds, and was just THERE instantly to take care of our needs. If you get Ricky for a waiter you will have one of the best waiters there, and consider yourself privileged. He's awesome. Be careful of the art auction. They'll pass out so called bid vouchers for raffle prizes, and they allude to the bid vouchers being good toward a bid on art. Be careful. Read the fine print. We won a voucher for 100.00, and thought it was good for bidding on any of the art they were auctioning. Well, it wasn't. It was only good for specific art that was to be framed and shipped. So, when I bid on some art it cost me more than anticipated because of not being able to use the voucher. This seemed deceptive to me. And, quite frankly it pissed me off. And, it was one reason I did NOT go back to buy anymore art. I don't like being deceived. The gambling was fun. We one 225.00 on a penny slot machine. And, we one 80.00 playing bingo. So we had a fun time gambling. The shows were FANTASTIC. We watched some of the adult comedy shows, and couldn't stop laughing. Those guys are hilarious. The singers and dancers were awesome as well. The country show was great, but the most spectacular show was the American Rock and Roll show. Holy smokes! The performers were AWESOME! Our cruise director TJ was pretty great too. It seemed as though he was everywhere, all the time. And, that was a good feeling to know our cruise director took an active part in making sure we were entertained. TJ was funny, energetic, and a great entertainer. We loved him! If I had to nit pic on things there are only two things in the room that were annoying, and one thing on the ship that was annoying. For the room, the small fridge didn't work. That was ok though as Made kept us in ice the whole trip. Also, the tv didn't have many channels to chose from. So, not much to do in the room. Well, maybe a little, lol. And, on the ship, it got very annoying having the folks in the fun shops constantly trying to sell us stuff. We mostly just wanted to look, but were constantly interrupted with sales pitches. That was annoying, and did in fact run me out of some shops. I won't spend money where I'm pressured. Oh yea, speaking of pressured, the art sales crew sent us THREE invitations to the final art auction. We didn't go for two reasons. First their deceptive raffling of bid vouchers that you couldn't use, and second because of high pressure sales. Frankly, they angered me with that. And had we not been as nice as we are, they would have gotten a piece of my mind. Please advise them to stop with the high pressure sales and deceptive bid vouchers that you can't use. Read Less
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