870 Carnival Inspiration Cruise Reviews

We chose this particular Cruise because it's close to her home Port of Long Beach California and the overall convenience of going up the night before and staying aboard the Queen Mary I would highly recommend the faster to the fun ... Read More
We chose this particular Cruise because it's close to her home Port of Long Beach California and the overall convenience of going up the night before and staying aboard the Queen Mary I would highly recommend the faster to the fun program for first-time Cruisers if you're interested in getting on the ship early to explore before you set sail on this particular Cruise it was for day to Catalina Island and to Ensenada Mexico the staff the energy thankfulness the people that work on the Carnival Inspiration are amazing everyone always remember their names they greeted us with kindness eagerness to help us in any way the food was amazing always something to do aboard the ship even if you wanted some quiet time there was somewhere to go to relax and get your quiet time I also highly recommend getting a massage in there Spa to the stuff compliment your vacation I recommend people weighed the pros and cons in the cheers and bottomless bubbles package you do the math and see if it works for you it's an amazing program insured even though this ship is older and lots more we truly enjoyed our vacation and had just as much fun on this ship as we would on a large Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
My wife and I took my mom and stepdad because my mom has always wanted to take a cruise but has never had the opportunity. We picked this three day cruise because we weren't sure if cruising would be either of their cup of tea. ... Read More
My wife and I took my mom and stepdad because my mom has always wanted to take a cruise but has never had the opportunity. We picked this three day cruise because we weren't sure if cruising would be either of their cup of tea. We've mostly enjoyed Carnival cruises and have sailed on the Inspiration multiple times. This time was different and far worse. First off, we sailed the Inspiration last year with our children. Last year, the atrium elevators were not working. This year, exactly the same. Maybe (conincidentally) they broke again, but neither trip did we see anybody working to fix them. Considering this is a focal point of the ship, it really does make a huge difference to the overall ambiance. Similarly, one of our favorite things are the dinners. We like to get to know other guests and hear about their days - which often give us ideas for future trips. We ALWAYS request late seating so we have time to enjoy the day - especially on shore days. This time we were given early and when I called to see what happened customer "service" did nothing for me. Somehow in a ten topper table "none" of the other guests attended any of the dinners. Service has always been amazing on the ship. Like past trips, the dining room and cabin staff were amazing. Sadly, after booking a $200 spa package, my wife was given the run around causing her much frustration for overpriced "relaxation". Even worse, on our last night, our cabin door was not working and I needed to go to guest services on multiple occasions. Each time no matter how nice I tried to be, the lone person working the desk was incredibly rude and disagreeable. Maybe she was having a bad day, maybe she is just that way. I know all the staff work long and hard so I bend over backwards to be friendly and respectful but definitely did not receive that in return. Lastly, I have to say, all the items on the menu now that are "additional charges" is ridiculous. I get having other services, products and restaurants that a special but putting them on the menu in the main dining room seems very tacky. Are we headed down the path where "normal" people get top ramen and mac and cheese with the option to upgrade? Aside from food, this is basically a floating hotel, especially given the fact that this cruise seemed to have only one show. Maybe our days with carnival are done. Hopefully, other lines still provide the value and service that made cruising a one-stop-shop for family vacations. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
I traveled on the Carnival Inspiration twice this year. Once in May (Monday - Friday, 4 day cruise) and again in August (Friday - Monday, 3 day cruise). Both times were very enjoyable though I would suggest going in the middle of the ... Read More
I traveled on the Carnival Inspiration twice this year. Once in May (Monday - Friday, 4 day cruise) and again in August (Friday - Monday, 3 day cruise). Both times were very enjoyable though I would suggest going in the middle of the week (Monday - Friday) cruise. The crowd is much quieter and filled with older couples, young families and just people who are there to relax which is more my scene. The good: Service both times was AMAZING. I really love the service that Carnival provides. When I went in May with my family (husband and 2 year old son) we had a wonderful time. The wait staff in the Lido Deck, Camp Ocean and Main Dining Room all new my son by name. They also knew he loved pizza, towards the end of the cruise they would start making him a cheese pizza as soon as they saw him walk into the Lido Deck dining space. The same great service occurred when I went with my best friend in August. Servers in the Lido Deck remembered our names and would always ask how we were doing and what we were up to. Both times I stayed on Level 5 - Main and both times the stewards and house keeping were excellent. The room was always clean and they always met our needs whether it was another turn down, more ice or just extra towels. The room stewards were always friendly. I stayed in a ocean view room the 1st time and a interior room the 2nd time. I do like the ocean view room the best. I really enjoyed some of the one board activities especially the karaoke when I went in August. The DJ was awesome and really made it fun! The food - Guys Burger Joint is amazing one of the best burgers I have ever had, and there were some items in the main dining room which were amazing and very solid options at the buffet. I enjoyed the ports on both visits. In my August cruise I did the wine tour which I HIGHLY recommend. It was amazing and very enjoyable. The wine at the winery was delicious and I was able to buy a few bottles for a very cheap price. The not so good: The staff is hard working but I didn't enjoy the weekend cruise as much of the mid week cruise. Their were many "partiers" there especially in the serenity deck. They were loud and quite irritating...though this is not carnivals fault. The staff is very hard working but this loud drunk crowd kept leaving plates, cups, forks, etc in odd places. In addition, on the August weekend cruise the food didn't seem up to par with a few months before. It looked like the staff had changed so I am guessing that the cooks/chefs may not be as strong. Overall it was an excellent trip both times though I high recommend doing the middle of the week cruise Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
As a travel agent, I booked these 3 & 4 day cruises all the time. I really wanted to do one and see what it was all about. From the second we got on the ship to the last second we got off, we were treated with such respect from all the ... Read More
As a travel agent, I booked these 3 & 4 day cruises all the time. I really wanted to do one and see what it was all about. From the second we got on the ship to the last second we got off, we were treated with such respect from all the staff. One of my highlights was when they introduced the Captain and his staff. My wife and I had the drink package (which I recommend) so we were going to all the bars. At the Alchemy Bar, the bartender was a very funny sarcastic person to joke with. The Captain and his staff were all at the bar as well. My wife told me I should get a picture with the Captain. I walked over to one of his staff heads and asked if I could get a picture. As soon as I asked, he immediately stopped everyone and called over not only the Captain but there entire group. My wife and I stood next to the Captain surrounded by all his managers and department leads. Talk about service! i do not like to tell people that I am a travel agent because I want the natural experience. Overall the cruise was fantastic! PS The slide is a lot of fun for adults too! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
First, awesome cruise! We went into this knowing it was a bit of a party cruise, a bit of an older ship and lacking any ports we were interested in. We were happy to just get away and cruise! The good. The staff and crew were the ... Read More
First, awesome cruise! We went into this knowing it was a bit of a party cruise, a bit of an older ship and lacking any ports we were interested in. We were happy to just get away and cruise! The good. The staff and crew were the best! Always friendly and eager to help. When one of the ladies from the craps table recognizes you and calls you by your name coming out of the elevator in the morning you wonder if you are spending too much time in the casino. We threw away the schedule for the most part and skipped getting off in Ensenada. We only had a few days and not having to be anywhere or do anything was our priority. We hung out by the pool, played mini golf, some ping pong, read our books, people watched, and gambled at the craps table. We also caught a couple of comedy shows and they were good. Our 12 year old son went to kids camp and had a nice time. They formed a group and bailed after awhile, I guess they get more independent at this point and at 12 and up they can sign themselves out. I caught his little group here and there and he seemed to be having a good time and staying out of trouble and by the third night they were getting pretty tight which was sad since it was a short cruise. The room was super comfortable, bed was great, plenty of closet space, and we watched a little tv and just stared out the window at the ocean going by. Showers were better then I expected. This was a party cruise, even at 1 in the morning sunday night before disembarkation the bars were still hopping. Lots of reunions, bachalor and bachelorette parties and even a wedding. Very nice crowd, everyone was friendly and down to earth. Our table mates were all very nice and we enjoyed chatting with them. We didn't go on any excursions but a couple of our table mates did go on the blow hole tour which they enjoyed quite a bit. The bad, but not really. Internet package. We paid for the internet package in advance.. bad mistake. Simply it does not work. I did some speed tests and it was worse then dial up, the upload was 0 so it meant waiting a few minutes for each email to load, or for my stock page to load. We upgraded my son to the fastest package and it was still barely usable. So, save your money and just use the internet computers they have there to check things. That was $90 wasted. So that was the one thing to complain about really. But we didn't, it was a learning experience and now we know. The food. Hit and miss But still found a few good items.. Guys Burgers were pretty good, the Mexican cantina not so much, the lido buffet was ok, the room service was barely edible. In the dining room we found a few good choices but we also ordered the steak and lobster ($20 extra) which were delicious. Salmon was good, roast chicken with stuffing good, Prime rib really not good (how do you screw that up?), salads and apps were pretty good. Cheese plate for desert was very good! Cheesecake good.. so try something, if you don't like it try something else. The biggest problem is... it was too short. We got the cruise experience. Being out on ocean, quality time with the family, doing everything or nothing, cherry picking things that looked good in the lido cafe or at dinner, being catered to by a wonderful staff and just appreciating how a whole ship full of people come together and have a great time. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
I chose this as a first-time cruise to test the waters (pun intended) for my family, and it was pretty good. The staff was very pleasant, the cabin was nice and the sights were lovely, but the food was pretty mediocre, as expected. The ... Read More
I chose this as a first-time cruise to test the waters (pun intended) for my family, and it was pretty good. The staff was very pleasant, the cabin was nice and the sights were lovely, but the food was pretty mediocre, as expected. The Guy's Burgers restaurant was great for picky children, but why does it close for dinner?! That makes no sense. Buffet food was plentiful, but some nights were better than others (the Jamaican/Caribbean food night was awful, which is too bad since I usually like those cuisines). The dining room was just OK. The biggest disappointment was the one pool -- it was tiny, and invariably filled with families on sea days. On one evening, I noticed some older kids noisily roughhousing on the pool until one of them banged up his leg pretty badly. I asked the crying kid if he was OK, but not ONE staff member intervened. Also, one of the hot tubs was out of service. The Waterworks slide area is fun for kids, but it is NOT A POOL, just some water slides with very shallow water areas. Overall, a very good first-time cruise, but for my next trip I'd prefer something with more than one pool and better food options. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Chose the cruise knowing it was a simple four night, to two mediocre locations. ITS a getaway cruise not a discovery cruise. Catalina Island can be accessed by a two hour ferry ride from the Los Angeles Area. Ensinada is essentially ... Read More
Chose the cruise knowing it was a simple four night, to two mediocre locations. ITS a getaway cruise not a discovery cruise. Catalina Island can be accessed by a two hour ferry ride from the Los Angeles Area. Ensinada is essentially Tijuana with a waterfront. SO WHY GO?? The sea day is relaxing, the boat small, gaudy by kind of nice and the service was pretty good. The day in Catalina Island is fun. WE rented a golf cart [make sure you reserve one before your boat arrives] and toured the Island. And after two hours there is NOT that much to see, so if you want to enjoy the Island, plan an activity at least one in the day. NOTE: the Tenders are a pain in the butt, but understand they must be utilized because the Cruise lines are NOT allowed to dock at the port and they cannot build a real port on Catalina Island for environmental reasons. NO real need to get off the boat early, but be efficient. Getting back is a pain in the ass because everyone wants to spend as much time on the Island as possible, and after 330 you will wait. But if you are on line by 330 [they claim that the last tender is at 4PM you WILL get back to the ship]. Ensanada is a slum that sells stuff you really don't need. However, it was a fun day. Took a horse ride with my Mrs. and spent a couple of hours in the shopping area buying all the crap we really don't need. Food was VERY VERY GOOD, however, there is an issue with the layout of the galleys on the ship so the service for dinner was slow Rooms are small [it is an older "fun ship" Shopping on the ship was interesting and very gracious staff HOWEVER: Carnival, enough with the nickel and diming on everything. its silly with the pictures already. I had U116 and my steward was great. Embarkation: nuisance to be expected. BTW- cheapest place to park is adjacent to the ship. We stayed at the Hilton and found a cheaper online hotel rate with Priceline and then parked at Carnival for 19/day. The shows on board were GREAT, did not expect to enjoy them as much as I did. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
I chose this cruise because the timing worked well with our long 4th of July weekend. We are a family with a school age child, so I was a little leery of some of the "booze cruse" aspects, but figured I was prepared :) At home ... Read More
I chose this cruise because the timing worked well with our long 4th of July weekend. We are a family with a school age child, so I was a little leery of some of the "booze cruse" aspects, but figured I was prepared :) At home we enjoy drinks and relaxing by the pool don't get me wrong. I just didn't want to feel like we were at a frat party, and we did not at all. I am a germ a phobe so my actual biggest concern was cleanliness. NOT a problem - our suite and the entire boat was clean. There were lots of families on board and the overall vibe was chill. The staff is really amazing and I kept wondering if they were getting paid enough for all this hard work. Sigh. Our suite was large and well equipped. I don't think I could ever cruise without a balcony, so the room type we booked was the only option. The TV kind of sucked, but we weren't there to watch TV. Our beds were very comfortable and we found ourselves sleeping later than we normally do at home. My only disappointment with this cruise was the pool. Its barely bigger than the pool in my suburban back yard. I knew this going in from the pictures, but was hoping for something a little more resort like. I have been on Royal Caribbean and loved the pool. I know this ship is older so it is what it is. Bottom line, this is a great cruise for the price. Its not top of the line, but they do a great job. My daughter and husband had never been on a cruise before and both enjoyed it as well. Oh, and the food was better than we expected too. We never ate at the buffet and the pizza was not so great, but the dining room and the burger place were good. I was expecting a mediocre cruise, we had a way better experience. So my starts on based on the bell curve :) Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Only had 4 days, live locally, so this was my only choice. Besides that, we enjoy Carnival Cruises, primarily because of the late night things to do, other than the Casino. When most ships are asleep, we still have the R-rated comedians, ... Read More
Only had 4 days, live locally, so this was my only choice. Besides that, we enjoy Carnival Cruises, primarily because of the late night things to do, other than the Casino. When most ships are asleep, we still have the R-rated comedians, Piano Bar entertainment, etc. We've been on many cruises, and include a number of cruise lines (most owned by Carnival). ALL of them, except Carnival, 'close up' ship after main entertainment, except for the casino and maybe the disco. Our favorites on this cruise were the Piano Bar sing-a-longs, including a song sung by the Ship's Captain. Very cool. Then we would leave in favor of the two--not one--but two different adult comedians, then back to the piano, still going strong until about 1AM! While Carnival doesn't have the best cruise food in the world, it is more than acceptable to us. Only 'complaint' is that this ship doesn't have a lot of variety in their buffet at lunch. The hamburger bar, though, was excellent. Very gourmet burgers, with great French Fries. The pool bar had good drinks, where I could actually taste the liquor, and a ton of poolside servers. Never had to hunt one down, like on many other ships. At dinner, we ate in the anytime dining room, and had wonderful service by very nice, efficient servers. Kudos to Emiliano and Groger (sp?). All-in-all, a wonderful 4 days--way too short, but the best we could do, given scheduling issues. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I did not pick this cruise. I accompanied my daughters dance group on their year end "tour" as a chaperone. I have sailed Carnival before and it was fine, not really my style as I am not a "partier" and don't ... Read More
I did not pick this cruise. I accompanied my daughters dance group on their year end "tour" as a chaperone. I have sailed Carnival before and it was fine, not really my style as I am not a "partier" and don't consume alcohol. The nickname for this itinerary is the "booze cruise" from what I heard. I had an interior stateroom (which I like because the light from the windows doesn't wake me up) and it was nice for my wife and I. The one biggest irritation is that there is only one outlet in the entire room. This makes it difficult to keep phones charged for taking pictures. That, in my opinion, is a huge fail. Granted the ship is older and was probably built before the ubiquity of portable devices, who knows. The bed was comfortable and we slept well. We also didn't have hot water in our shower for the first 2 days. I thought maybe at first it was because the ship wasn't moving or something. The second day, I got the water to lukewarm. I told my cabin steward about it and he said he would have a look. When we returned to the room I turned on the shower to check it. Still no hot water. I called guest services and they promptly sent a plumber to the room. After about 30 minutes he had the whole shower assembly replaced and the water got extremely hot. Yay! When we left the room the cabin steward asked about the water. I told him the plumber came and in his broken English (which is fine) tried to tell me "no, it was all good" and that I was doing something wrong, I think. If the plumber had to replace the unit and then it worked, I am guessing I wasn't doing anything wrong. It had been a few years since I had cruised previously and I was stunned that there is an extra fee for lobster and steak!?!? Is that a thing now? To be honest, the dining room food was, in a word, disappointing. Portions were super small and we generally left unsatisfied, almost like we needed to head to the buffet. The molten chocolate cake was very inconsistent. The first ones my table received contained hardly any cake; basically a ramekin of chocolate sauce. The next night is was nice and cakey with some nice melt on the inside. We finally figured out that in order to truly enjoy it you must order a side of vanilla ice cream as well. The buffet food was good...better than the dining room. No complaints there. I will give kudos for Guy's Burger Bar. Those are some fantastic burger concoctions. Because of the dance group we were scheduled for late dinner and there really wasn't that many entertainment options that didn't conflict with that time. In hindsight, we probably should have skipped the dining room and eaten at the buffet or burger bar. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We wanted a short cruise out of LA to meet our schedule and this cruise was the only one that fit our timeline. We had cruised Carnival several times before but had become disenchanted with drunken young people and unsupervised tweens. We ... Read More
We wanted a short cruise out of LA to meet our schedule and this cruise was the only one that fit our timeline. We had cruised Carnival several times before but had become disenchanted with drunken young people and unsupervised tweens. We decided to give it a go and, indeed, there were very few problems with young people and tweens. Those that were unruly were quickly taken in hand by hovering parents. The ship is a bit older with good size inside cabins (much better than other lines we have sailed). Food at night was very good with a broad selection, but the buffet at lunch was quite limited, although there were burgers, pizza, deli sandwiches and Mexican food at each lunch. We upgraded to filet mignon at dinner one night (paying $20 each) and it was well worth it. Our only complaint - and it is significant - is that there was no babysitting for under-2s that allowed parents to go to dinner and see a show. Night owl sitting started at 10 pm and ended at 1 am. In addition, there are extremely limited times (almost non-existent) when a parent can accompany an under-2 to play with available toys at the center. No toys are available anywhere else and, for those of us who were already packing pretty heavy with diapers, formula, etc., there was not much room left for toys. So, Carnival is the family fun ship but not unless you are over 2. For my family with additional grandchildren each year, this means Carnival is off our list of cruise lines for family vacations for at least the next 10 years or so. Given that the fix is quite simple (compare to RC and NCL, even Cunard), it's surprising that Carnival has chosen - seemingly intentionally - to ignore families with under-2s. We paid for Faster to the Fun. With a child in tow, this was an absolute must and worth every penny. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
My hubby was going out of town with his brother-in-law, so I decided to take my 2 teenagers along with 2 of there friends ( all ages 16 & 17) on this short cruise by myself. We have done this itinerary before, on the Imagination. I ... Read More
My hubby was going out of town with his brother-in-law, so I decided to take my 2 teenagers along with 2 of there friends ( all ages 16 & 17) on this short cruise by myself. We have done this itinerary before, on the Imagination. I did have to call to book this sailing because we needed side-by-side cabins since I was traveling with minors... we ended up booking 2 ocean view cabins E241 and E245, which had a connecting door. I will start by saying we did get FTTF, and our embarking process was quick and easy... we were happy to have our cabin ready from us when we boarded, so we were able to drop all our carry-on items and go explore right away. We were very pleased with our cabins location and ease to areas on the ship. We usually get a balcony cabin, but having a window was great for natural light... although the outside of it was very dirty :( We were surprised to find there are no refrigerators in the cabins. The ship itself was set up nicely, easy to find what you were looking for. Inspiration is upgraded with Guy Burger and Blue Iguana, both of which were very good. I just don't understand why they don't serve chips to go with there great salsa bar. We were pleasantly surprised by the ease of getting our food, they stayed well staffed and lines never got too long at any station. We really enjoyed the shows and other entertainers on the ship... all of which were top notch. We were disappointed not to get early dinning, and had to do anytime instead. We did have the same wait staff our first two nights, but after that we were seated in different areas. We never had to wait all that long to be seated, we just prefer the experience of having the same team each night. In regards to the meals, we were pleased with all we got. Catalina is a lovely laid back sea side town, which we explored via golf cart. Shopping in the quaint shops is always fun. In stark contrast, we then went to Ensenada, where we were harassed by store owners the entire time we were there. It makes trying to enjoy the people and culture difficult. All in all, we had a very fun and memorable trip. The entire staff were friendly and went over and above to make our stay amazing. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We've taken somewhere between 13-15 cruises (kind of lost count) and have sailed on Carnival multiple times. We chose this cruise because we were celebrating a birthday that week, but our schedules couldn't accommodate a 7-day ... Read More
We've taken somewhere between 13-15 cruises (kind of lost count) and have sailed on Carnival multiple times. We chose this cruise because we were celebrating a birthday that week, but our schedules couldn't accommodate a 7-day cruise, so we booked the Monday through Friday itinerary. We are late 40's/early 50's and sometimes behave more like 30-year olds. We enjoy socializing and having a few cocktails and I would say we are pretty laid back. We enjoy our vacations and try not to let the little stuff get to us. Our fellow passengers seemed primarily to be a mix of late twenty somethings to mid forty somethings, with a little of every other age group mixed in. We found most of the other passengers to be very nice, polite and social. It was not a school break so there were only a handful of children on board that we could see. The cabin: I was a little apprehensive because the ships that sail that itinerary don't have many balcony cabins and we haven't sailed without a balance since the 1990's. I'm happy to report that I didn't miss it. We had a portrait window that offered tons of light and I never felt claustrophobic, plus the window sill makes a great shelf. The cabin otherwise was just the same as most we have had in the past except there is not a little sofa. Plenty of storage, desk space and adequate bathroom. Shower actually had really good pressure once you get the hang of the temperature adjustments. The ship: I was really impressed with this ship; I think i expected it to be outdated, but that wasn't the case at all. The decor was subtle by Carnival's standards and the public areas didn't feel crowded. My only complaint was that our cabin was near the center elevators, however you can't use that bank of elevators to get to the pool area or the Mardi Gras dining room so we were walking back and forth a lot, and I missed not having a bar at the Serenity deck in the back. On past cruises that has been our go-to. The staff: I can't say enough; the staff on this ship are the friendliest and most helpful around. From our steward to the dining staff, bartenders, room service - all of them were great. The food: There have been a lot of mixed reviews on the food and my expectations were low going in. It ranged from okay to really, really good. At the high end is Guy's burger joint. It really is one of the best burgers you're going to have, and is really unexpected on a cruise ship. The breakfast at the Lido was also surprisingly good. We had all four dinners in the Grilled Tenderloin. The fish was grilled perfectly, but was just a little plain for my taste (but very healthy!). Prime Rib was good, cooked as we requested and had a nice gravy. Pork Chop was my least favorite, but still was okay. My best meal was the tenderloin. It was grilled perfectly, very flavorful, large portion and was served with Bernaise sauce on the side and mac and cheese with bacon. Yum! Ports: We've been to Catalina and Ensenda before so we mostly walked around, ate and stopped for a few cocktails. The fish and chips on the Pier in Catalina were especially good. In Ensenada we took a bus from port for $3 each that dropped us downtown. Walked around and spent the last part of the day at Hussongs, which is the oldest bar in the California's. $1 beers make it an easy stop. Entertainment: The poolside DJ did a great job of keeping it fun and lively without being too loud. We went to 3 adult comedy shows; and we couldn't stop laughing at either one. We checked out the dance club and the karaoke bar; both were fun and spent our fair share of time in the Casino. Husband was on a lucky streak so that turned out well for us. We also caught an impromptu performance in the atrium bar by the performers in "Motor City", and it was great. Debarkation: We did the self assist and once we were up and packed, we simply walked off the ship. Customs took no more than 10 minutes and we were on our way. We will definitely go this route in the future. Overall we had a great time. Each day at some point we would say to each other "Wow, this is really fun!". Can't wait to do it again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
It was a short cruise but Ensenada was beautiful! So glad we decided to do this one. The ship was very nice and had alot of activities. The weather was just right....not too hot! The staff was friendly as always on our Carnival Cruises! ... Read More
It was a short cruise but Ensenada was beautiful! So glad we decided to do this one. The ship was very nice and had alot of activities. The weather was just right....not too hot! The staff was friendly as always on our Carnival Cruises! Very easy getting on and off of the ship....didn't seem as hectic as it usually is on the other sailings we have been on. We decided to go on The Blow Hole Tour and it was amazing! The dining crew was AWESOME as always. My husband and I met several couples on the cruise. Everyone seemed very friendly. I would definitely recommend this cruise to all of our friends and family. We arrived a day early and stayed on The Queen Mary which is right next to the Carnival ship which made it very convenient to walk over and get on the Inspiration! Great Experience this trip! Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
For Mother's day, I took my family to a 3 day Cruise from Long Beach, CA. to Ensenda. there was a Huge line to check in and get your Room key. it took us about 2 hours to do that, then when we get to go to our room, the elevators ... Read More
For Mother's day, I took my family to a 3 day Cruise from Long Beach, CA. to Ensenda. there was a Huge line to check in and get your Room key. it took us about 2 hours to do that, then when we get to go to our room, the elevators are so slow, which took us another 15 minute to get to it.... There is only one Outlet in each room to use. which is really unconvinced. Cruise was sold out, for more then 2500 passengers on board, there where only 3 areas for breakfast, which had more then an hour wait, to get your omelet. the buffet lunch area was okay, but very limited food, for dinner we used the Carnival Restaurant, Staff where trying their best, but the space was so tight to move around. The food was very average. nothing extraordinary. for three days, my kids had french fries and pizza. Then we took the ATV tour in Ensenda, which was another dilemma, the company's name was HM Logistics. please don't book any thing with this people. They took us to the town, by the beach area to Get The ATV's, we've been waiting there for more then 30 minute to get to us, then after 10 minute of ride, their machines where broken, all 3 of them, it was waist of time and Money, we asked for manager, but there was no one to come forward, everyone pretending that they are "not understanding English". On the way coming out of Cruise, it took us 4 hours to go through custom and leave the boat, only two people working for 2500 guest... this was very disappointing. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
This was actually a cruise gifted to us when we purchased a timeshare, however we upgraded to an ocean view cabin which cost us a few hundred dollars more. We purchased the Cheers package for water, alcohol, and soft drinks, which was a ... Read More
This was actually a cruise gifted to us when we purchased a timeshare, however we upgraded to an ocean view cabin which cost us a few hundred dollars more. We purchased the Cheers package for water, alcohol, and soft drinks, which was a very good choice. The food was quite good, the service was excellent. The ship is kept in pretty good shape considering how many cruises this ship makes in a year. I would give a 5 rating except that the pizza prepared at the pizza "kiosk" wasn't very good. The buffet is nice. The cruise ship offers an upgrade for an evening but we didn't choose to do that (the Chef's Table) but we did choose to get the "Faster to Fun" pass which costs approximately $50 per cabin and allows you to board quicker, get your baggage to your room quicker, as well as depart and board in the ports quicker. We also were with a select few people to be personally directed to the debarkation on the day we got back into Long Beach, however since a lot of people were getting off with their luggage rather than having the cruise personnel take care of it and get it off the ship so there was still a bit of a line getting to the terminal. All in all it was a good cruise. (Our weather wasn't good for us, but any vacation is good, no matter the weather.) The only thing I must say is that the choices of dates on the TripAdvisor site indicate the cruise left on 5/8/17 when in fact it left on 5/7/17 late in the afternoon. The cruise is Sunday thru Thursday for a four day cruise. Cabin size is decent and so is the bathroom and the steward kept the room neat and tidy when we were out. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Picked this cruise on the inspiration because of the low cost and value. this cruise did deliver, i called to make reservations in the steakhouse and was told they were all booked up. no the were not, they don't have a steakhouse ... Read More
Picked this cruise on the inspiration because of the low cost and value. this cruise did deliver, i called to make reservations in the steakhouse and was told they were all booked up. no the were not, they don't have a steakhouse restaurant on this ship. i did enjoy the shows, one was a motown review and the other a 70"s dance party. For the value it is unbeatable. sit-down meals served by professionals for 3 meals per day, shows at night, for about $100.00 a day. try to obtain any hotel in la for that price. I will be back need to see which ships i have not been on yet. no one was trying the watersides because it was cold... Will need to make Reservations for the Golf Carts on Catalina on the next Trip It is an older ship but also smaller and therefore not overly crowded even though it holds 2600 people. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Our cabin stewards, Wason and Avus, were fantastic! They were friendly, attentive and went above and beyond to make the cruise experience special for our grandson and niece. Our excursion to Ensenada was the highlight of the trip. ... Read More
Our cabin stewards, Wason and Avus, were fantastic! They were friendly, attentive and went above and beyond to make the cruise experience special for our grandson and niece. Our excursion to Ensenada was the highlight of the trip. Maribelle was so energetic and informative. The resort was beautiful and the food was the best food of our trip by far! Aside from the above mentioned two things, which were fantastic, our overall cruise experience was not so positive. The food in the buffet and dining rooms (where the service was incredibly slow) were average at best. It was noisy all of the time. The pool side activity one day was too lewd for a family atmosphere with a "hairy chest contest" that included remarks on nipple size, men shaking their butts in the judges faces and other inappropriate comments and activities. Our grandson and niece HATED the children's room. It was small and crowded with children from 3-11. My understanding was that they would be with a group 9-11. They begged me to liberate them and would not go back. Shuffle board and miniature gold were fun. The pool itself was very nice and my grandson and niece enjoyed the slides. Since the children spent so much time in the pool area, it would have been nice to be able to talk with my husband and sister, but the music and adult-friendly activities held nearby made it impossible to do so. I don't know if I'll ever go on another cruise after this experience, but if I do I would definitely choose a different cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
I haven't cruised Carnival for years so I was a bit worried. However I wanted something within driving distance to Los Angeles. I kept my expectations very low. Overall it was an enjoyable trip. Very good value. Food was okay, ... Read More
I haven't cruised Carnival for years so I was a bit worried. However I wanted something within driving distance to Los Angeles. I kept my expectations very low. Overall it was an enjoyable trip. Very good value. Food was okay, not as good as Princess or Royal Caribbean. There was not many high quality dishes and the variety wasn't that great either. Service was also a notch below the other cruise lines mentioned especially in the dining room. The dining room service was a bit slow and wait staff often forgot requests. I guess I am used to princess and royal Caribbean service. Food was also not hot enough. I like the Catalina itinerary as Ensenada is ghetto. It was a bit cold to swim. The ship was clean and the cabins were bigger than I remembered. Definitely get the faster to the fun. No waiting to get on and off the ship and priority tendering. You also get your bags much quicker and immediate access to your cabins. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We were on the Carnival Inspiration. This was our first cruise and I used the comments from this site. We purchased the Faster to the Fun pass and it was probably the best 50 bucks I have ever spent. Got to the port and from parking to ... Read More
We were on the Carnival Inspiration. This was our first cruise and I used the comments from this site. We purchased the Faster to the Fun pass and it was probably the best 50 bucks I have ever spent. Got to the port and from parking to dropping off our carry-ons was a 20 min experience. We passed what seemed like theme park lines of people waiting to board! And debarking on the last day was 15 mins at 7am. Before everyone else with the platinum guests. I will purchase that again until I make platinum. We were in cabin U10 which is a porthole cabin. This was my daughter's 15th birthday Mother/daughter trip and she picked the cabin. Upper deck. I love the location. Yes we did hear the anchor drop at Catalina and that is 20-25 min process, but it wasn't outrageously loud. We were already awake preparing for our day. The room was more spacious that I thought it would be and the shower was roomy too. Our steward, Rupa, was amazing, She has us memorized in by dinner time and always greeted us and seemed truly interested in what we were doing that day. We had early dinner in the Carnivale dining room. Our waiters were wonderful. They joked with us and gave us suggestions when we asked. There is so much going on onboard that we were tired every night! Constantly moving watching comedy shows, motor city show, hasbro game show, karaoke, groove for St. Jude. We kayaked at laBbufadora. Rebeca, Carlos, & Roberto were so wonderful. They made sure we were all safe and had a great time. That excursion is not 4 hrs like it says. It's 5-6, but it's fun and we have time to eat tacos and get churros at la Bufadora and some got off the bus downtown Ensenada which is just a few blocks from the ship. We were so tired we just went back to the ship and napped. Catalina was good but our excursion time (we don't get to choose it) was right in the middle of the day, o we really didn't have time to explore. Next time we will explore and not do and excursion there. I want to see more of the island. My daughter is 15 and there were only 3 other teens onboard so there were no plans for the teen club so she stayed with me most of the time. She loved all the activity too. We got our haird done on elegant night, the spa staff were wonderful and we looked great for the inevitable picture taking frenzy that happened that evening. They set up a ton of areas for professional portraits, and we did take advantage and ended up buying just one pic and it was from one of the professional backgrounds. All in all I'd do this trip again and the friendliness of all the crew we encountered just makes me want to travel Carnival. I really think you get what you put in to these kind of experiences. It was great!! Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We have been Carnival cruisers for years and have enjoyed their cruises. This is the first time we went on the 3-Day Ensenada cruise. The boarding process was great and went quickly, however, I was surprised that you couldn’t carry on ... Read More
We have been Carnival cruisers for years and have enjoyed their cruises. This is the first time we went on the 3-Day Ensenada cruise. The boarding process was great and went quickly, however, I was surprised that you couldn’t carry on sealed/unopened plastic water bottles and the confiscated 4 of them telling is the don’t allow plastic. Kinda funny as soon as we got to the stateroom they provided plastic water bottles at $3.75 each. No worries though as there is plenty of water to drink on board. The ship is the oldest of the fleet and has been refurbished, it was nice and comfortable. The onboard activities were great and the crew was fantastic. The breakfast and lunches were also great. The Lido deck was the place for good food. They opened a burger place called “Guys Burger” – probably the best burger around. The dinner was another story. We had late dining at 8:15. Normally Carnival schedules the shows after dinner so the early diners get their show then the late diners get their show. They didn’t finish with delivering dessert until after the start of the show so we missed the shows as we didn’t want to enter 30 minutes late. The food at our dining room was like cafeteria food, actually Denny’s is much better. My wife had the apple pie and the crust was so hard you could etch glass, next night she ordered apple pie (same thing) horrible. We have always enjoyed the surf and turf or steak, now they charge and extra $20 per plate for the “better food”?? I am sorry, but I have spent many days on Carnival cruises and the dinners were always something to look forward to – not the case on this cruise. My suggestion is get a late lunch on the Lido Deck and bypass dinner (it is not worth the calorie count). The servers were fantastic and really did a good job with what they had to work with. The selection of food in the dining room is different than we have experienced, they really have down scaled the type and quality of the menu. IE the shrimp cocktail was four small shrimp on a glob of cocktail sauce (you wouldn’t serve that at any dinner party) you know the 60 per bag shrimp – not the 20-30 per bag shrimp. The pools and jacuzzi’s were great and the deck activities were good as well. The gym was fantastic and the steam room wonderful. Leaving the ship was very smooth and organized. We had a good time, but it apparent there was some cost cutting going on during our dining experience. Really Sara Lee frozen pies are much better than what they had on deck. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I went on this cruise with a group of girlfriends for a fun weekend. We had a great time together. BUT..... The food was pretty bad, just cheap buffet type food, even the sit down dining was just the same food put on a ... Read More
I went on this cruise with a group of girlfriends for a fun weekend. We had a great time together. BUT..... The food was pretty bad, just cheap buffet type food, even the sit down dining was just the same food put on a fancier plate. There was no one checking to make sure people washed their hands before touching the buffet utensils. I'm glad i didn't get sick . Drinks from the bar were hard to get to because there weren't enough and always crowded with the partiers. There were barely any cocktail servers. The room was absolutely disgusting. We upgraded to a suite, and it was so tiny we could barely move. The lighting sucked so bad we couldn't use the mirror for our makeup. There was no exhaust fan in the tiny bathroom. Our friends were in an inside room on a lower level, for half the price and their room was nicer than ours. The balcony we paid extra for was unusable. It was so tiny we didn't fit on it, and there was a stairway right outside the balcony for people to walk to an upper level, so they could look right into our room!!! we had to have the drapes drawn the entire trip. What a waste of money for a balcony suite. If i wasn't stuck in the middle of the ocean i would have gotten off and stayed somewhere else. The public bathrooms were so gross i could not use them. The cruise lines do this thing where they charge a gratuity to your room, so no one tips directly, and that is clearly reflected in the enthusiasm and service of anyone working on the ship. Don't expect them to hustle your request or even care. I got an occasional smile from some of the workers, but for the most part they looked tired and beaten down. this was my first and last cruise on Carnival. Its might be a good cruise if you are young and just want to party and drink the whole time with all your friends. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We didn't choose this ship, is was the last part of a 4 centre US holiday. We knew it was an American ship, which is all about ' You WILL have fun' but as it was only 4 days and we had a Junior Suite, we thought we could ... Read More
We didn't choose this ship, is was the last part of a 4 centre US holiday. We knew it was an American ship, which is all about ' You WILL have fun' but as it was only 4 days and we had a Junior Suite, we thought we could just sit on the balcony and take it easy. How wrong we were. Our cabin was on Deck 11, the balcony was so small you couldn't swing a cat on it - it was less than 3 foot deep!! It overlooked the deck below, not the sea, and we were overlooked by the cabin next door. The cabin was directly under the gym and at 10.15 pm on the first night we could hear the non stop pounding of the treadmills in the gym. Guest Services were very apologetic and said the gym should have closed at 10 pm and they would send somebody up there. At 10.30 pm the noise hadn't stopped so we complained again. The noise of the treadmills stopped but we could still hear people up there until gone 11 pm. At 6.20 am the following morning we were woken up by (yes, you've guessed) the treadmills again. After complaining again, the noise stopped for approx. 45 minutes then resumed. Guest Services agreed to move us but had no spare cabins of the same grade. We weren't bothered so we moved to an outside view cabin on Deck 5 and accepted a 400 dollar refund. We can't fault the staff, they did everything in their power to help but we really can't understand why any cruise company would put a gym directly above cabins then have ridiculous opening hours - 6 am - 10 pm. The safety drill on the first day was ludicrous. Our muster station was out on the pool deck and we stood there for over 40 minutes in the sun while we waited for each muster station to complete their procedure. In 20 years of cruising we've never been subjected to such a poorly organised drill. Children and elderly people were suffering with the heat and there was no shade. Crazy. We found the décor tacky and depressing, especially in the buffet - big purple tubes from the floor up to and across the entire ceiling??? It was enough to put us off eating in there. The Mardi Gras restaurant wasn't much better. Despite the dress code emphatically stating that no sleeveless vests were to be worn, it was obviously ignored by other guests (mainly Americans). There was loud music blaring out from every public room, the only semi peaceful place was the Library but that wasn't a particularly inviting place to sit. We spent one and a half days cruising before we docked at Catalina Island which I believe is only 20 miles off the main coast? We couldn't wait to get off the ship and if we could have, we would have made our own way back to LA for our flight home from there. We know this is a 'fun' ship but it's definitely put me off booking any Carnival cruise in the future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Now, don't get me wrong I shop at Walmart a lot (and love it)! But people need to know when they book Carnival they get what they pay for. I love cruising and am already looking to book my next one (Liberty of the Seas in April ... Read More
Now, don't get me wrong I shop at Walmart a lot (and love it)! But people need to know when they book Carnival they get what they pay for. I love cruising and am already looking to book my next one (Liberty of the Seas in April 2019). I will do a pros & cons review: Pros: -FTTF was great to have and we were on the ship by noon -The staff was wonderful, polite, and helpful -The rooms were adequate, with everything we needed in our Ocean View room -The alcohol selection was great, with high end bourbon (Woodford Reserve, Gentleman Jack, and Buffalo Trace) and very good tequila (Patron Anejo), and plenty of beers to choose from, and the Alchemy Bar was outstanding -Guys was one of the best burgers I've ever had on, or off, a cruise (I wish it was open after 6 so I could have it for dinner as well) -My kids had fun with the waterslides and pool -The comedians were great (only went to the PG versions because with all the drinks, I was asleep by 10:30) -Catalina was cool -Tacos and burritos were ok -Pizza was adequate -Self service soft serve ice cream was good -The gym was nice, and well equipped (had to work off all the Guys burgers) -Because it is the Walmart of the Seas, the people were normal (no snooty folks looking down at my kids for running and doing cannon balls in the pool) -Less "in your face" sales pitches than Princess Cons: -MDR food was bad, very very bad (only the fake prime rib was decent) -Buffet was worse -They only had one barista -Coffee shop didn't open until 7AM and whatever they serve and call "coffee" everywhere else is horrid -Ensenada is a dump -No chips for salsa bar (I brought my own though!) Now, I knew perfectly well what I was buying and am happy with the value of this cruise. In fact, I would do it again. I am not putting Carnival down by calling it the Walmart of the Seas, I'm just (as my kids would say) "keeping it 100". For a quick 4 night cruise, and under $2K out the door for a family of five and two connecting room cabins, I'm very satisfied. Could they have better MDR food? Sure. But then the price goes up. For anyone looking for a quick getaway for a pretty low price, go for it. If you're looking for food above Denny's quality (except Guys), don't do it (I've been on Crystal and know what good food can be like). Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
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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