Sail Date: June 2018
This is my 4'th cruise with Carnival and my 10'th cruise overall. First of all, I have to say I have never been disappointed with the friendliness and aim to please attitude of the majority of Carnival employees! The employees work very ... Read More
This is my 4'th cruise with Carnival and my 10'th cruise overall. First of all, I have to say I have never been disappointed with the friendliness and aim to please attitude of the majority of Carnival employees! The employees work very hard for not much money and I truly appreciate their constant effort to ensure a pleasant experience for their guests. Having said that I must express my disappointment in Carnival on this particular cruise. First of all, the food quality was very disappointing. There was not much variety at the buffets and the dining experience was sub par to what I am used to. The fact that you had to pay and xtra $20 to get surf and turf where on past cruises with Carnival it is part of the menu. In addition , the food was often times served room temperature and service slow. My advice on this cruise would be to stick to Guy's burgers and the deli! Guy's never disappoints and the deli served fresh delicious sandwiches! Again I don't blame the employees but possibly lack of them. Our room was kept very clean however, the common areas were not. Tables in the eating areas were not cleaned in a timely manner and some bathrooms in the pool deck area were gross!! As far as entertainment, there was a great band in the casino bar and of course the night club was fun but , in my opinion, the comedians in the comedy club were pigs! We are warned if we are easily offended to not attend the late hours comedy club however, I have attended many late night comedy clubs that can be R rated but these guys just had some gross delivery! I am a Californian so I have been to Catalina and Ensenada before. I am very pleased to find that Ensenada now offers more shore excursions than they have in the past which of course you can find cheaper deals outside of booking with Carnival when you get off the ship. The people were super friendly in Ensenada but of course you always have to be careful and be sure to haggle with the prices on everything! All in all I had a great time and would do this cruise again. It's a cheap get away for someone who can drive to the port but if I had to pay for airfare I would choose one of the bigger Carnival ships where there is a noticeable difference in quality. Alot of people choose this cruise as a first time experience as I did but let me just say- It can be better!! Happy sailing! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
Over all it was great. Some of the staff was rude. When in port to experience adult time and if you decice to leave your children on the boat in camp. Make sure you get back by 4:30. The staff gets rude even though the 5:30 is the time to ... Read More
Over all it was great. Some of the staff was rude. When in port to experience adult time and if you decice to leave your children on the boat in camp. Make sure you get back by 4:30. The staff gets rude even though the 5:30 is the time to be back. Food wasn't all that great. My girls call it fake bacon. Lol. Thank God for late night pizza. Dinner in the dining room was great. Room service could have a few more options and not charge for soda if they can see you have the bubble package. The night prior of entering the destination port, the ship goes a lot faster and you'll feel more movement. The same as coming back to main port. Have your Seabands ready. The cabin Stewart was great. He calls you by first name. How he remembers everyone's name is beyond me. The cruise director was amazing. Great personality and includes all in the dance party in the lobby. That was a lot of fun. If you like to people watch. Sit by the pool and enjoy a laugh. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
A quick get-away for my son's 21st birthday. Embarkation was so quick and simple, we never stopped walking from the parking garage until we were in the atrium. The remodeled dome is beautiful and streamlined. The Inspiration is beautiful, ... Read More
A quick get-away for my son's 21st birthday. Embarkation was so quick and simple, we never stopped walking from the parking garage until we were in the atrium. The remodeled dome is beautiful and streamlined. The Inspiration is beautiful, even for it's age (just like me!) Everything is clean and sparkling, comfortable, yet elegant. Our interior cabin was perfect for a place to get some rest, I was on a trundle bed and I was worried about comfort, but it was very comfortable. Our cabin steward, Bagus, made sure we had everything we needed, even though we rarely saw him. Out of 7 cruises, this is the ONLY one where I can say that the cruise director really impressed me. On other ships, the CD was either rarely seen or only mingling with the opposite sex! NoNo was great! She is full of energy, funny, and spent her time with everyone. I loved the music trivia. Stage shows were entertaining, and my son said the comedy shows were very funny. Bar and dining service was quick and all the servers were very friendly. The dining room meals were yummy! However, the buffet for lunch and dinner was hit or miss...but there is always, pizza, the deli, guys burgers, or burritos! Never was hungry. Had room service one night and it was quick, hot, and very good. I did not even see a crew member who wasn't working hard, smiling, and accommodating. Catalina is a beautiful port. My son and GF went parasailing, then we took a golfcart around the island. Having been to Ensenada previously, I stayed onboard while here. My son found a great little beach, walking distance from the port, then a couples massage at Ensenada Massage. Overall this was a fantastic cruise. We all had an amazing time and I am already planning another! (Maybe 7 days this time!) Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
Carnival Inspiration Stayed in a Grand Suite on a 3 day trip to Catalina and Ensenada (with a day at sea). The suite feels dated and a little scruffy (scraped paint, marks on the walls, etc.). But it was fairly comfortable (once I ... Read More
Carnival Inspiration Stayed in a Grand Suite on a 3 day trip to Catalina and Ensenada (with a day at sea). The suite feels dated and a little scruffy (scraped paint, marks on the walls, etc.). But it was fairly comfortable (once I figured out the non-intuitive and loud air conditioning). On the other hand, the water in the shower never got above tepid. The toiletries were extremely limited. And I could only find two outlets! The room service menu is limited but the food we ordered was good. The main dining room breakfasts were very good (I recommend the eggs Benedict). Portions were small but (although they don’t tell you this) you can order as many sides as you want. Dinner in the dining room was also very good. (Ditto the portion size comment.) Decent wines. I had steak three nights in a row (filet, prime rib, and NY strip) and all three were cooked to order and tasty. The wait staff was friendly and attentive. The Lido deck food service was okay (the taco stand is the best) but the whole Lido deck vibe is kind of hokey and unappetizing. The vaunted soft serve is not up to Dairy Queen standards. The equally vaunted Guy Fieri burgers were limp and unappetizing. The passengers are an odd mix of geezers and youngsters. Everybody was very friendly, but almost everybody drank a lot. And in some cases, quite a LOT. The social activities seemed mainly geared to the young crowd (hairiest chest contests, Harry Potter trivia contests, twerking, etc.). The “premium” satellite internet connection was slow. Very slow. Lousy TV service. We did our own shore excursions. The sales pitches—photos, shops, future cruises—are relentless. It got old quick. Annoyingly, when we tried to cancel spa reservations more than 24 hours in advance, they did not refund our money. Seemed like everybody on board smoked when they got into the bar and casino. My clothes reeked of smoke when we got home. All in all, we had a good time but we made most of our own fun by taking private shore excursions. Other than the food service, the on board experience was at best “meh.” I very much doubt we’ll take another Carnival cruise. Definitely not on Inspiration. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
Overall, this was a great experience for someone who’s going on a cruise for the first time. The staff were super friendly, definitely treated us like family, made us feel welcomed and valued . The food was alright, it was very ... Read More
Overall, this was a great experience for someone who’s going on a cruise for the first time. The staff were super friendly, definitely treated us like family, made us feel welcomed and valued . The food was alright, it was very nice to be able to have food almost anytime you craved for something. It would have been better if there were some more salad choices. The indidian chef at the grill never smiled, but certainly made the best pastrami sandwiches. Entertainment could improve a bit for adults. The ship itself was very clean and the people on it as well, all sophisticated and classy. It would have been helpful if the information about the cruise and the activities were provided to the cruisers in advance, so we could have planned things ahead. It was awesome when the captain and all the crew showed up on the last day, we felt very safe cruising with the captain. I was disappointed when my suitcase got delivered to our cabin on the first day after arrival since it was missing our travel pillow. We handed the carriers our suitcase on our way to the ship on monday afternoon, when they delivered it to our cabin later that day, the travel pillow gone. There’s one thing I would recommend changing 1. It would have been better if we could extend the time in Ensenada and stay there longer to be able to explore multiple places instead of spending a day at the sea. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
I'll preface this with the note that my husband and I tried to do this on the cheap as much as possible, and you get what you pay for with a lot of vacation related stuff. This was also the first cruise for both of us. That said, this ship ... Read More
I'll preface this with the note that my husband and I tried to do this on the cheap as much as possible, and you get what you pay for with a lot of vacation related stuff. This was also the first cruise for both of us. That said, this ship is a little bit on the older side, with seriously crazy carpeting patterns that look like 80s pixelated graphics and structural details in the ceilings and walls, like huge violin curlicue embellishments in the violins bar, interesting ceiling tentacles with spiderweb end caps in the buffet dining room... just a bunch of amusing but weird decorations. The cons aside, the food in the Carnivale dining room was phenomenal for the amount of meals they had to provide and on a tight schedule. We skipped dinner on Mexico night on account of finding good food on shore, but for the nights we ate in the dining room for the late service (8:15), the menu was different each time, with a bit of a theme for where we were (Catalina, Ensenada, etc) For the number of meals they had to get ready I wouldn't have been surprised to see the meals put together in a somewhat slapdash way, but they were all served hot, plated nicely and prepared well. Service was fantastic. Ramesh was super personable and funny, and johnny on the spot with drink refills and to take the next course's orders. Guests are seated according to room number and usually with about 10 other people to a table. We got to get to know 2 other couples over the course of the cruise and by the last night were chatting like old pals, definitely a nice experience there. Also, very nicely set up tables - all the plates and glasses and everything arranged so it looked semi formal. I really enjoyed elegant night too. Everyone looked great in their dresses and shirts. Entertainment was fun. We don't have any kids and a lot of the activities are family oriented, so most of it wasn't really geared for us. There was great live music in the bars and some hilarious comedy shows after dinner. Those two were about all we went to as neither of us are into loud, crowded pool and dance parties, which were abundant almost every evening. I probably would not choose this particular ship for the next cruise. It was fun, but the bright neon lights everywhere, the crowds of families with kids and the general structure of the ship (plus the shower issue) wasn't really ideal for me. Also, the fact we were just sort of parked out at sea without really going anywhere for the "Fun Day at Sea" was a little weird to me. I think I'd rather go on a cruise that's actually traveling somewhere. This might just be a silly nitpick, but: I don't know if newer or larger ships have better stabilizers, but the chop was pretty bad on the last night. I had some pretty annoying land sickness the first day after disembarking. Some other stuff I noted that, as a first timer, would have been good to know: - evac drill is mandatory. It's like, maritime law, man. ;) - get the Cheers drink program if you like to let slip the dogs of war - it's worth it. (BUT: you can't get knock back more than 15 drinks in a day or you're cut off. I'm sure that's a rule for a reason...) - medical services is on the bottom floor. If you're gonna be sick - start running! - lavs on deck are far apart and clogged frequently - if you're gonna be sick - start running! - no place on ship to get dramamine, other pharmaceuticals, sanitary supplies etc. - you have to check in online before midnight the night before embarkation. . - don't forget your cabin card and ID when you get off for shore days - you're gonna have a bad time getting back on without them. - on disembarkation day, they want you off the ship by 9:45 am. Trip's over, shoo! ;) - bring a support banana for upset stomachs. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
We just wanted a quick get-away. We got a rude awakening literally. Between midnight and 2:00 am guests would walk down the hallway laughing, yelling, speaking extremely loud, and running. You would expect people to be more respectful ... Read More
We just wanted a quick get-away. We got a rude awakening literally. Between midnight and 2:00 am guests would walk down the hallway laughing, yelling, speaking extremely loud, and running. You would expect people to be more respectful of the other guests trying to sleep. When eating in the buffet, we had to look at a man who did not have a shirt on as well as his female friend who thought not to wear a cover-up as we had to look at her string bikini and her butt cheeks. They should have stayed at the pool to eat their meal. There was no officer to be seen who should have asked them to eat outdoors. Food onboard was average or below. They served lamb in the buffet that you needed a power saw to cut. Eating it was out of the question. Dinning room food was just ok as well. The oatmeal was actually pretty good. This ship being as old as it is (1996), should be retired. The ceilings are extremely low. Smoking is allowed in the casino. We walked through just once and were assaulted by the smoke. The ceiling being so low keeps all the smoke trapped. We would have enjoyed doing some gambling, but due to the smoke, would not return to the casino. In our cabin, our air conditioning control was mounted on the ceiling. We had to get on a chair to reach it, and turning it off was very difficult. We had to call our cabin steward and ask him to turn it off. We have never been on a ship where the control was mounted on the ceiling. Absolutely ridiculous. Also in our cabin, the only type of glasses to use were glass water goblets. This is really a very dangerous safety issue. If you dropped the glass it would shatter in the sink or floor. How easy would it be for Carnival to furnish plastic glasses for use in the bathroom? Our cabin steward did not have any, so we brought two plastic glasses from the buffet to use in the bathroom. Television in cabin only offered a few stations. There was not even a sports channel to watch. Plenty of advertising for Carnival was available to see. The entertainment was just ok. They had a Motown show one night and a Studio 54 the next night. The entertainers worked hard and did a nice job. Service throughout the ship was good. We took this cruise many years ago when Royal Caribbean offered it. I wish they still did it. We have been cruising since 1982 and have been pretty much around the world. This cruise and Carnival, we will NEVER do again. We have been on Princess, and Carnival owns them, so we most likely will not sail with them as well. We will stick with Celebrity and Royal Caribbean. Read Less
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
Sail Date: April 2018
My wife and I decided to take this short weekend cruise as we live in the LA area and wanted to do something different for our wedding anniversary. We're no stranger to cruising or Carnival - we have done several cruises before but only 7 ... Read More
My wife and I decided to take this short weekend cruise as we live in the LA area and wanted to do something different for our wedding anniversary. We're no stranger to cruising or Carnival - we have done several cruises before but only 7 or 8 day trips. The 3 day cruise was a new experience for us. We went with an ocean view room on deck 7. I thought I was being smart and picked a room under the galley. My thinking was that it would be quieter than having someone in a room above us. That turned out to be a bad idea - it was the noisiest room I think I could've picked with crashing and dragging noises throughout much of the night. So a word to the wise - don't pick a room under the galley. The embarkation experience went pretty smooth - especially with the Faster to the Fun package with an appointment time. I think we made it on board in record time, I'd be surprised if it took 20 minutes from the time we walked into the cruise center until we put our carry ons in our cabin. The ship we thought was in pretty decent shape for its age and how quickly they cycle it with new passengers. We like the Spirit class of ship so this felt quite different but seemed to have the same amenities we normally enjoy. The room was okay, a little dated but clean. We usually book at least a balcony room but this class of ship has very few of those. You're not really in the room very much other than to sleep and clean up so it wasn't a big deal to us for a 3 day trip. One thing that seemed a little off from our usual, enjoyable experience was the bar service seemed very slow for the most part. We had great service at the Alchemy Bar but the other bars were hit and miss - usually very slow. Another thing to note is that the crowd for this short cruise is much different than the longer itineraries. I wouldn't recommend it for kids or families with younger ones. We're social drinkers - we're in our early 40s and are pretty tolerant of other folks having a good time. But, we did see quite a few people that had over-consumed and had become sick or temporarily unable to take care of themselves. We were awakened a couple times by rowdy partiers in the hallway and at least one fight. Overall, just about everyone seemed to be there to have a good time though some took it a little too far. We have a 15 year old and I'm glad we had him stay home with grandpa, I don't think he would've enjoyed himself. The food overall seemed good and the staff in the main dining room was as good as we've ever experienced. It would've been nice to have the steakhouse as is found on the Spirit class ships but we managed to survive just fine without it. The sea day was nice - lots of activities going on to fill our time. Ensenada is much different than other Mexican ports and we chose to go with the wine tasting tour. We weren't expecting much but were blown away by the wine country just outside of Ensenada. There were vineyards and wineries all over and the quality of the wine was quite good - we brought 6 bottles home and had a fantastic time. Debarkation went fast but we only had carry ons which was great. The US Customs process went really fast. I think between the time we left the lounge on the ship waiting to be released it took perhaps 20 minutes until we were in our car at the parking garage. All in all, we'd do this trip again as a nice way to spend a weekend. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We have always flown out of Florida for our cruises, as the west coast did not have options we were fond of. We decided on a whim to try it out. * Embarkation - Great! So fast and easy - very different from Florida. * Ship - ... Read More
We have always flown out of Florida for our cruises, as the west coast did not have options we were fond of. We decided on a whim to try it out. * Embarkation - Great! So fast and easy - very different from Florida. * Ship - Beautiful! This class of ship has beautiful ships - they are older but have less gaudy decor and carpet. The Inspiration was very lovely! Our last day (sea day) was very windy: 30-40mph winds. This made for high swells and rocky waters. We *always* take Dramamine with us, just in case of these situations. You could definitely feel the boat moving. The top of the ship will be blocked off for safety reasons when there are high winds or bad weather. * Cabin - We were in R10. This is in the left (port) side front bottom of the ship on the Riviera Deck (level/deck 4). If you plan to do a lot on the upper decks (10 is lido with the pool and food), plan to use elevators or stairs. We liked this cabin because of the cost and the ease of getting back on the ship after port (embarkation is deck 3). We had two portholes - they are awesome to at least see daylight and know around what time it is. There was a slight odor in the bathroom (from the very first time we walked in). I am not sure if it was from mold or from a pipe. There were days we noticed it more than others. * Cabin Steward - Huge shout out to Dante! He did an amazing job keeping us comfortable and our cabin stayed very clean. He remembered our names (I always wonder how they do that) and always greeted us, and asked if everything was okay. He was very respectful of our times we didn't want the cabin cleaned. * Dining - We ended up having to go with Your Time/Anytime dining. We usually go with the early dining. We did not sit in the same seat/area twice (although I heard you can request this), and had different wait staff each meal. We ate breakfast and dinner in the dining room and were very happy with both. The staff did an amazing job and the food was wonderful! For dinner we ate mahi mahi, prime rib, spare ribs, salmon, steak tacos (Ensenada port of call on the menu); for breakfast we had omelette’s for most of breakfast meals, but had a good offering of sides (hash browns, English muffins, etc.). We are not adventurous eaters, they had a lot of seafood and at least 4-6 different options for dinner, plus options for those non-adventurous eaters. If you do not like your meal, let the waiter know and request a different meal. We ordered sides from other nights with no problems (even if they weren’t on the menu for that night). The wait staff was always happy to please and always took care of you. I was _very_ surprised and pleased when I heard of another member on board having a gluten intolerance - the dining room prepared her a full menu for each day – allowing her to order the night before so they could get it prepared for the next day. So awesome! * Ports – (Itinerary – Long Beach->Catalina Island->Ensenada, Mexico->Long Beach): ** Catalina Island: We LOVED Catalina Island. It was so quaint, cute and a pretty island. We rented a golf cart and toured the island – with no regrets. ***If you do the golf cart tour, reserve WELL in advance! For some companies, you have to just stand in line and wait for golf carts to return. They don’t have a wait list. People were very friendly and we highly enjoyed ourselves. The beach was beautiful, but the water was cold. ** Ensenada: Just as personal preference, this is not somewhere we would go again. We walked the city around 1st street just a few minutes from port and were hounded by little kids trying to sell items – to the point of them following us and walking next to us for ½ a block. After that, we decided to get on a tour bus to La Bufadora ($17/pp) with a stop at the Corona Distillery. The Corona “distillery” was very much like a tiny convenience store. Corona cans are under a dollar. At the time we went, the bathroom was inoperable. Then, onto La Bufadora. This shopping area is 45 minutes away from port. It is a street vendor/flea market. There is a least ¼ to ½ of a mile of both sides being filled with street vendors that are very pushy, direct and will yell out to you to come to their shops. There are a lot of free samples – we were offered a lot of free tequila shots. To give you an idea of pricing, we were interested in a Lucha Libre mask and were told it was $25.00. They asked us to make an offer – which we didn’t. We just moved on. We did not spend much time there. You do have to go through this flea market to get to the blow hole. Sadly, the blow hole was not very active when we saw it – it had a few small bursts, but nothing really big. If we go on this cruise again, we will stay on the ship for this port (again, just personal preference). Overall, we were very happy with this trip. We will go again someday! Read Less
Carnival Inspiration Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 1.0 3.3
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 5.0 4.1
Rates 2.0 4.3

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