Sail Date: April 2014
I choose the fttp option for this cruise which did give a speedy embarkation. My wife walks with a stick and we were heded into a queue after asking outside the terminal building about boarding the ship, this left us with all our luggage ... Read More
I choose the fttp option for this cruise which did give a speedy embarkation. My wife walks with a stick and we were heded into a queue after asking outside the terminal building about boarding the ship, this left us with all our luggage and some differculties for my wife in handling the luggage and walking with a stick, we asked several times during the embarkation process if someone could take ouur baggage and on each occasion the answer was no. The embaration was swift but awkward with the luggage, not a good start for our 1st experience with Carnival. Dining, the 1st meal we tried was in the Paris buffet and the hot food was lukewarm and I didnot eat any as I did not want to get food poisoing on my 1st day. I spoke to an officer in the restaurant and he replied he would look into it. I never ate hot food in the buffet again.The Elation dining room was nice and the food was much improved and hot. We asked for the wine package in the wine menu which was the 3day package, which we purchased, after purchasing we were told the red wine selections were not available.We continued with the package but not happy with the now even more limited choice. On the 4th night we picked a wine selection from the menu and then on the 5th night we were handed a different menu which offered a 5 night package and when we queried the fact that we were not offered the 5day package on the 1st night we were effectively given a shrug of the shoulders. Cabins the cabins are dated but clean and the steward offered good service. We choose the beds together option and this caused limited access to the bed as you could not walk down each side 8f the bed and had to crawl in from the bottom if you needed to get up in the night. Entertatinment, we enjoyed the entertainment. The adult comedians were very funny and were good, the piano man was good but had differculties attracted an audience. The productions it Normandie Theatre were very entertaining but the views were extremely restrictive in a lot of seats by pillars. Bar service was good and we thought the pricing was reasonable. Overall it was essentailly a good cruise but with poor attention to detail and other cruise lines with have sailed with do give the attention to detail and Carnival do need to improve, this was our 1st Carnival cruise and we will not sail Carnival again.   Read Less
Sail Date: April 2014
I've cruised on another Carnival ship in the past and had a great time, but the Paradise leaves so much to be desired. When I first stepped foot onto the ship, I was overwhelmed by cigarette smoke! It was beyond disgusting and it was ... Read More
I've cruised on another Carnival ship in the past and had a great time, but the Paradise leaves so much to be desired. When I first stepped foot onto the ship, I was overwhelmed by cigarette smoke! It was beyond disgusting and it was impossible to walk through any of the main areas of the ship without encountering the smoke. The only two places to escape the smoke were our cabin and the dining room. The first day of our cruise was my husband's birthday and I had pre-ordered a cake for him to be brought to our table in the dining room after dinner. The second we sat down at the table for dinner, our waiter came over and asked for him and then proceeded to tell him that he was getting a cake. Really?? Way to ruin the surprise and take the fun out of everything, Carnival! I didn't let my anger ruin his birthday. Even more to backup my review's subject, there was nothing to do on the two sea days unless you like bingo or sitting at the pool all day long. I made it through the first sea day without dying of boredom, but when the second sea day arrived, I wanted to go home more than anything. Speaking of home, when the ship arrived back in my wonderful home city of Tampa, there was some unexplained delay that prevented everyone from getting off the ship. Since we were carrying our own luggage, we decided we would wait in our smoke-free cabin. Nope! We got kicked out and had to go wait for nearly an hour in the smokey bar area near the casino. That was the perfect way to end our vacation. Before ending this review, I do have to include one positive note. On two of the four nights, there were stand-up comedians that performed and they were awesome! I would go see both of them at a comedy club if they performed off the ship. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2014
Departed from Tampa-got to the port at, 12, dropped off our bags in our room by 12:30. The only negative experience was the person "in charge" of herding us to the counters---I saw a paddle waving, she did not, and she got ... Read More
Departed from Tampa-got to the port at, 12, dropped off our bags in our room by 12:30. The only negative experience was the person "in charge" of herding us to the counters---I saw a paddle waving, she did not, and she got nasty...until I pointed it out to her (she wasted everyone's time arguing with me. duh). Cabin-small, as expected. Big window, thankfully. Because we wanted a king, there was no floorspace to speak of. Didn't really care-we spend little time in the room. The rooms show the ship's age, much more than the common areas do. We did have a problem with the toilet..night one, you'd push the button--and it would flush five minutes later; night two? Nothing at all. Called Wira, our room steward. Within 10 minutes someone was at the door. Problem resolved-no more issues for the remainder of the cruise. Beds were comfortable; room nice and cool. Bathroom-decent size. It was pretty clean, but the closet doors could use a good scrubbing and/or repainting/refinishing. First afternoon we met our room steward, Wira. First night? No bed turndown, chocolates, or animals. I had forgotten about that until we met our friends at dinner-and they asked "what animal?" Was disappointed, but in the grand scheme of things? Meh. That changed, and we got animals, chocolates, and turn downs every night...except the last night-no animal. :-) We didn't ask for any assistance during the cruise, but I have no doubt had we asked, it would have been provided quickly. We traveled with 8 others-all adults, no children. Because of this, we did more on the ship than we normally would have-played trivia (and won several), saw the comedy show one night, danced nearly every night, karaoke (I watched my friends...ha!) They tried to convince my husband and I to do the formal night show..when I heard the "lineup" of songs/entertainers they would be emulating, I took a pass...all country. My friends (some) like country, but at dinner, they said it was really awful-more "HeeHaw." My country music loving friends really disliked it. They were also surprised that the cruise director, Steve, played the fiddle (the next night he juggled-missed that too...). One night we decided to hit the comedy show. It was weird-that night, they only had ONE "adult" show scheduled--at 11:30. Every other night there were two shows-10 and 11. We enjoyed it...Jerry...? Was a ventriloquist. If you are offended by adult humor, skip it. I'm not. Little offends me. :-) We loved dancing in at "Rex" nearly every night. Different themes-one night it was ladies' night from 10-11 (free glass of champagne). 70s-80s night, Latin...the music was good. Old school for those of us of a "certain age," and more current music. Never did the piano bar, watched a movie ("Gravity") or used the pools. I don't know if the pools are newer Carnival ships are bigger, but the three ships I've been on? Tooo tiny! We DID like the "Serenity" area-over 21-but it was not easy scoring a chair or lounger. There's a hot tub out there, a shower, towels, and bar service-all at the back of the ship. Our last day the husband was able to grab two loungers and get them in the shade...when it was later in the day, people left and we moved up to the rail, watching Cozumel get further and further away. Food-everyone wants to know about the food, right? Lido buffets: Mongolian Wok, pretty good. Grabbed lunch from there twice; had a hot dog one day. There is a deli/hot sandwich station (think paninis); the pizza place, and the buffet, which changed daily-(American, French, Italian-never ate at that station). Ice cream, of course, and the desserts. Dinner, late seating, in the Destiny dining room. We had a table for 10. We were lucky enough to have Joey as our waiter-not only did he remember all of our names, he remembered little things-like my husband likes water without ice. He would suggest things and encourage my husband (big guy-not big as in "needs to lose weight," but big as in "do you play pro ball" big) to try multiple appetizers and entrees. A friend traveling with us got sick on night two-pneumonia-and he arranged for her meals to be delivered (dining room meals-not the standard room service meals). He did that for three nights, since she was completely bedridden. He was great-attentive-nothing every threw him. Great guy--he's taking a few months off soon, then sailing on a ship out of Miami--so hurry! :-) The food itself was good, for the most part. Of course, we all loved lobster. One night, the husband ordered two entrees...one was the lasagna...he said it was waaaay too salty, and didn't eat but a bite. For the most part, we were all happy with what we ordered, and in the rare case of the off entree (Penne mariscos-our friend didn't like it), another meal was suggested and brought. Of course, everyone had the warm chocolate melting cake EVERY NIGHT...Still as good as it was on my first carnival cruise in '05. The service at dinner was impeccable-thanks to Joey-who has this great attitude and personality. (He spoon fed the husband one night, while we looked on, hysterically laughing). They have added the SeaDay Brunch to this ship. This is a sit down brunch in the Elation dining room and ends at 1, allowing you to sleep in. My husband loved this on the two sea days. The menu options were pretty good-he had he steak and eggs (filet mignon) and a few other items. The service was a bit SLOW. The day we went to Cozumel, we had breakfast in the Elation dining room with our friends--and good grief-the service wasn't great, it was slow, and the waiters had a bit of an attitude. We were happy our evening waiter was not like those guys! This was the first time we booked excursions through the ship-we did the Allura Catamaran to Sting Ray City-there were 15 of us on board...the water was choppy-and as we left they shut the sand bar down, bcz boats could not drop anchor. The crew was great, the price good, and we had a nice time. Booked the Power Catamaran to Isla Pasion. This was our second trip there. It's a bit more "formal," but the food was still good, drinks (adult and otherwise) still free; beach service, water "toys,"...a GREAT relaxing day. It was a 5 hour expedition, so we had enough time to wander a bit and do some shopping. Our ship docked several hours (4-5) late in Tampa due to the crazy fog. They set up trivia games (yay, we won again!) and set up lunch on the Lido, since no one was able to disembark until 1:30. They took a difficult situation and rolled with it. They allowed people to remain in their cabins until 11:30 and ran "Gravity" as well. It's an older ship-she is showing her age. It's a budget trip as well. If you keep those things in mind, and keep your expectations in check, you will not be disappointed. The cruise was exactly what I expected it to be. On the shuttle back to the parking lot, the man talking to my husband said it was the "worst cruise" he's ever taken. He knew the itinerary when he booked-that should not have been a surprise; the price point was not a surprise...for the money? It was a great deal. We also cruised with 8 others..and I truly think had we been on the Concordia, this group would have made the best of it. Just know your ships before you go, and adjust your expectations. We probably won't sail this ship again, but mainly because we've decided-we like balcony rooms much more and will not sail again without one.   Read Less
Sail Date: January 2014
Carnival Paradise is OK but it seriously needs some updating. Rust is visible from the balcony doors to hull of the boat. Pipes are bursting and causing leaks which makes you uneasy and keeps you wondering what may go wrong. The plumbing ... Read More
Carnival Paradise is OK but it seriously needs some updating. Rust is visible from the balcony doors to hull of the boat. Pipes are bursting and causing leaks which makes you uneasy and keeps you wondering what may go wrong. The plumbing is loud, without ear plugs hard to sleep. The plastic around the windows is peeling off. The balconies have a huge opening which could be life threatening for a toddler. When we asked for a safety net, no one returned our call. The room service menu is simply made of sandwiches. When you are waiting in the coffee bar, employees will mind their own business unless you interrupt them - contrary to what you expect to hear "how can I help you?" The main dining room is incredibly loud with obnoxious entertainment. Worst, everyone is waving their napkins in the air basically spreading their germs all over.... I will not be surprised if the next norovirus outbreak will be on this boat.... And the Half of the Upper Deck smells really badly of cigarette smoke so if your room in on U deck you may want to move forward where the air quality gets better. And the banging. There were constant repairs each morning starting at 8AM. Metal being hammered - yes, we understand there needs to be maintenance but can it not wait till the afternoon? But, even though we had a child on G-tube (yes, we made it possibly by bringing our own blender and a doctors letter of medical necessity) we actually overlooked all these inconvenience. We never let our little guy unsupervised out, we did not worry about staff minding their business, the tobacco smoke was not an issue inside our cabins, used ear plugs, ignored the undercooked fish and overly salty food, did not eat more than once in the main dining room..... And we actually enjoyed the cruise because... We like cruising. There were enough option to eat. If one option was not palatable there was usually another option. Also the sweet treats were great. It was nice to get off the boat in Cozumel and Grand Cayman and even enjoy the beaches for a short while. Cabins were old, dated, and actually not spotless - contrary to what I had seen before in Holland America Noordam. But, our room and my parents room had connecting door. So, we had lots of space that made it a great accommodation considering that we had an extra suitcase of just in case medical supplies. Getting off the boat - passport check for non US citizens was poor. They know there will be X amount of people. Why cant they gather them in groups before letting everyone wait for 1 hour? Getting off the boat on tenders - it is OK. I thought however paying for a Suite Entitled for a few more perks - except priority boarding. Muster Drilll - was complicated. Not easy for infants, toddlers and elderly. It could be all done in less than 20 minutes - rather than 45 min. Camp Carnival - great job. What a luxury for both parents and kids to keep the little ones occupied and seemingly safe hands. This sounds overly negative and yes, for paying suites, we were expecting a little more. However, we love being on the water, except the last night the weather was great and we enjoyed a break in the scenery and living in Tampa made it easy to embark/disemabark. Would we do it again? No. Carnival Paradise needs major upgrades and once the upgrades are done, and the boat caters slightly more to be a "relaxing experience" rather than only fun (i.e. ammouncements from speakers for Bingo at 9:30PM is not ideal) it will not be our priority boat. However, until our little guy grows up chances are we will try other Carnival boats with Camp Carnival. How many stars - 2.5 out of 5. You can expect to get everything that you want from the cruise just in the lower standards, less selection etc. Finally port of Tampa, as it appears is struggling to handle larger boats. 2,000 + passangers out and only 1 (ONE) elevator....   Read Less
Sail Date: January 2014
I usually don't write reviews, I'm not one who likes to complain about service being in the service industry everybody has a bad day now and then. But I can't let this one go. Our experience on the Carnival Paradise for the ... Read More
I usually don't write reviews, I'm not one who likes to complain about service being in the service industry everybody has a bad day now and then. But I can't let this one go. Our experience on the Carnival Paradise for the most part was good, the wait staff at dinning was great. But the food at the buffet (bad bad bad) is the only way to describe it. I was eating bacon for breakfast, horrible not only bad I found the wrapping in which it came in cooked right in with the bacon. Ok it happens once in awhile, but not time after time. So I opted to have pancakes instead, bad choice found long strands of hair in the pancakes. Come Carnival you can do better than that. We bought the Faster to the Fun package, we did get good service getting on the ship, but our luggage didn't show up till late that night. If I where one of their Plantuim customers(the first ones on the ship) I would really complain the tables at the pool where filthy cigarette ashes on them and food stains none of them had been wiped down. I had to ask for a bar rag so I could use a table, alot of people where doing the same thing. It seemed as if thier staff really didn't know what the Faster to the Fun package was about. When debarkation at Tampa came. We were told to wait in the American (piano) bar, which lead to an argument with the entertainment manager tell us we couldn't wait in there. EXCUSE ME, she continued until I showed her the letter we recieved from Carnival the night before tell us to wait there. Upon which she then left only to return and call only Platinum, Diamond members to debarkation. Upon which she returned and asked the Faster to the Fun customers why we were still waiting in the piano bar, and the argument started again that we were not to wait in there. YOU GOT TO BE KIDDING,now everybody in there was getting really upset. I dont know what her problem was but she needs customer service training. The ship does need refurbishing but in all not to bad of a cruise, we will have to think going on Carnival again. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2013
Just had my first cruise experience for the week of Christmas '13 - and I will not be back on Carnival again. The food went from mediocre the beginning of the week, then went to absolutely disgusting as the week went on. This was the ... Read More
Just had my first cruise experience for the week of Christmas '13 - and I will not be back on Carnival again. The food went from mediocre the beginning of the week, then went to absolutely disgusting as the week went on. This was the biggest let down of the trip, as i had heard food on cruises was supposed to be great. The only positive thing I can say about the Carnival Paradise's food was the omelet station was good & salad bar was nice & fresh & had a good selection- what a surprise compared to the other options. Burgers weren't bad, but not exactly something I wanted to eat the entire time. The rest of the food was terrible, both in the buffet areas, as well as the dinning room. They allow smoking on board/inside the ship in certain areas, which resulted in the majority of the inside of the ship smelling like an old nasty ashtray. We booked a shore excursion through the ship, only to have it cancelled on us by the ship. It was disorganized & a mess trying to get a tender sticker. No other excursions were available. No apology, no other arrangements, etc. were provided by guest services, who were very rude & unhelpful. No immediate refund was given (it was put back on our sail & sign account later that night, lot of good that did us when we needed it then to try & book something on shore). So no snorkeling for us in the Cayman Islands, which was part of the reason we booked the cruise to begin with. That day at port felt like a wasted day - should have been at port at 9 am, didn't actually get to get on shore till 1:30 due to the late arrival to port as well as the disorganization in giving out tender stickers. Pool was small, way too overcrowded. I thought prior to the trip I got a good deal on this cruise, after this, I can't even say "you get what you pay for" - didn't even feel like that at least, what an absolute waste of money (have spent double the amount at Walt Disney World & left feeling I got my money's worth).   Read Less
Sail Date: September 2013
I have sailed Carnival on a few occasions. The following is what to expect on the Paradise. Embarkation: Tampa has valet parking. A nice option we took advantage of for $20.00 more. We were in the grand suite so we had priority boarding. ... Read More
I have sailed Carnival on a few occasions. The following is what to expect on the Paradise. Embarkation: Tampa has valet parking. A nice option we took advantage of for $20.00 more. We were in the grand suite so we had priority boarding. Very smooth boarding, but I did miss not having a steward escort us to our room. We were on our own to find it. It was a lovely cabin with a leather sectional sofa, additional club chairs, large dressing/makeup area, nice size walk in closet and bathroom. I did not like that they automatically put the tip for cabin steward, waiters/waitresses on the bill. We are generous tippers and the service was much better before they started doing this. Now they are a bit lacking in the service dept. The ship is showing it's age. We expected that, but not as much maintenance going on in ports as there used to be. The ship is slightly inconvenient getting from deck to deck. Watch the prices for jewelry in the onboard gift shop. You can do much better at a port, however you must haggle.The food: We are not big eaters. The Lido deck buffet was not good with the exception of the Mongolian Grill which we ate at once during embarkation. The rest we ate in the dining room. I would rate the food good, not great. The warm melting cake varied every night from fair to excellent. No other dessert was anything to rave about. No more midnight buffets. We never ate at them anyway so we didn't miss it. A bathing suit from a previous guest was found behind the shower curtain. We had been showering in there for 3 days prior to the discovery. The spa was fabulous! My husband had his teeth whitened and I had a keratin hair treatment, cut and blowout. Purchase the products to take home to maintain the beautiful hair! The truly are great. Disembarkation is quick and easy or laid back and easy. Your choice. All in all we had a wonderful time spending time together. We always cruise in suites and it's back to Celebrity Cruise Lines for us. Carnival is about fun, Celebrity is about luxury.   Read Less
Sail Date: June 2013
We had a good time despite the weather which was rainy and cloudy almost every day. We stayed in a Grand Suite. The room is pretty big and it has a nice long balcony. However, the ship is very old and worn out, and even the suite was in ... Read More
We had a good time despite the weather which was rainy and cloudy almost every day. We stayed in a Grand Suite. The room is pretty big and it has a nice long balcony. However, the ship is very old and worn out, and even the suite was in poor shape. The bathrooms had sinks that were rusting badly and the tub's finish was all coming up. the tub had jets but I would never take a bath in it because it looked nasty. Carnival needs to spend some money to renovate the Paradise because it doesn't look much like Paradise. Also, something happened which we had never had happen before. On our last night of the cruise, in the middle of the night, the speaker system in our room went off and they annouced "Sierra Team in Cabin ..." and then "Operation Bright Star in cabin..."! Needless to say we were woken up with a jolt and worried about what was happening. the next morning, our room stuard would not tell us what that was about. He clearly knew what had happened, but I guess he wasn't allowed to tell. On a positive note, the food was very good. In general, Carnival does not disappoint on the food quality and taste. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2013
I consider my wife am I seasoned cruisers. This was her 10th and my 9th on Carnival. We have never had any excuse to complain about anything ever on any cruise. We enjoy the boat, the ports and everything about cruising. As this was her ... Read More
I consider my wife am I seasoned cruisers. This was her 10th and my 9th on Carnival. We have never had any excuse to complain about anything ever on any cruise. We enjoy the boat, the ports and everything about cruising. As this was her PLATNIUM cruise we enjoyed the boarding perks as well as other little extras throughout the cruise. We left Tampa on Saturday afternoon. As we were allowed to go to our room a little early we noticed very quickly a strong smell in the hallway right at our room. It smelled as though someone had been sick and failed to make their room. It was awful. I began to wonder who or when someone would address the smell. We saw nothing out of the way but the smell was over the top. I soon ask the room steward about the smell and he informed me that a sewer line had broken or cracked and was allowing the smell to fill the hall. The smell never came in the rooms as far as I know but we had to walk thru the smell each time we came to the room or left the room. He told me that it would be fixed when we came back to Tampa's port. WOW, now on Sunday they cleaned the carpet in this area and had fans on ti to dry. This was much better. Monday the smell was around all day. Cleaned carpet again on Tuesday, smell was gone all day. Wednesday we had the smell all day and on Thursday morning still as we ported. The vomit smell in the hall is not what you want after going to the dinning room for breakfast and enjoying the wonderful Eggs Benedict. Now for the bed in this room, I don't think it could be sold in a yard sale in Honduras. The bed was the beginning of a canoe. It was cupped and forced you to the middle (good for rough seas only). I had to wake up every hour and turn over or take a chance of setting up rigamortis. I hurt every morning. (Good way to get you to go for a massage). Hey, what happened to the great beds. My wife and I always enjoyed the beds and each room had fliers in the room to purchase the bedding and down comforters. They were great on all the other Carnival cruises we have been on and you could walk around the entire bed. I had to crow hop over the corner of the bed where it joins the life jacket storage. They touched so I had to hop over the corner in the middle of the night in the dark, as we older men sometimes have to do, to get out. We went to the pursers desk and shared our concerns with them. I also sent in the E-Mail grade card sent to me addressing this situation. The pursers desk said simply, "We are sorry, is the smell getting into your room?" WOW, now lets not get too involved or excited. Hey, I am walking thru some really bad stuff here. Methane gas has killed a lot of people in coal mines. It will explode under the right conditions, and I mean a BIG BOOOOOM. It is deadly. Nothing came from my return of the E-Mail, as I had expected. My Carnival vacation planner had about the same concern. No advise other than lets go on another one. The only other thing about the room, DO NOT EVER STAY UNDER THE GALLEY!!!! Tile floor and wheels make a lot of noise. Our room steward was the best, our dinning service was the best, the folks on Lido were the best. All around the boat was good. We got in at a good price and we got more than what we paid for with the exception of the room and hallway. As I said earlier, we have never complained, nor am I pursuing anything free from Carnival. I am a little miffed by their concern and welfare of the guest. We truly expected more in the room and hallways. I am not looking forward to another cruise like this. If quality has gone down to this level across the board with Carnival, I will book else where next time. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2013
So, after almost 20 cruises with RCCL, we decided for schedules sake, to try Carnival Cruise Lines. Wow...what a mistake. Shortly after we arrived, Tori's billfold was stolen and when we discovered it was gone, we immediately went to ... Read More
So, after almost 20 cruises with RCCL, we decided for schedules sake, to try Carnival Cruise Lines. Wow...what a mistake. Shortly after we arrived, Tori's billfold was stolen and when we discovered it was gone, we immediately went to Guest Services to contact security. Our thought, with camera's all over the ship, it would make sense that a camera somewhere would pick up something somewhere. We were told however, that there probably wasn't anything security could do, but they would allow us a "Free call home to have someone cancel the cards" and would notate our account and to check back with them to see if it was turned in. Not happy with this response, I then found a "white uniformed" officer and told him our plight, asking to speak to ship security. His response was that we had to go to Guest Services. VERY disappointing. As we were still going through the city of Tampa, we had signal on the cell phone and was able to cancel the debit and credit card. But the response from Carnival personnel aggravated a difficult situation. While we didn't want this to spoil the entire vacation, we decided forget about it as much as we could and move on. But, there is a huge difference in the service we received onboard. For example, one night as we were leaving Elations Dining Room, two crew members crossed in front of us, making us stop in our tracks. While both understood completely what they did, they didn't say excuse me, apologize or anything, they just kept going. This would NEVER happen on RCCL. Another example...at the omelet buffet, I was next in line and there was a lady behind me from another country. The omelet maker (who happens to be from the same country) saw her and said hello, which is fine, but when it got time to make the next omelet, he totally ignored me and asked her what she wanted. I then said something to him and he looked at me with a scowl and said "what would you want". The lady behind me was very embarrassed and turned to me and apologized, saying she didn't realize I hadn't ordered mine yet. But, I was totally ignored by the omelet guy in favor of someone from his own country. Once again, this would never happen on RCCL. This is only two examples of the challenges we faced on board. On the bright side, there was a bartender in the bar outside of Queen Mary Lounge that was phenomenal. Here name is Evelyn and she made sure she remembered our name and what we usually ordered. When we came into the bar, she would look up say hello to us by name and then ask if we wanted the drink we normally ordered. She is only on Paradise until 3/22, has two months off and then gets on Breeze for a six month cotract out of Miami. Look her up if you are on these ships. I rarely write reviews but had to share my thoughts on this experience. No, the billfold never showed up and we never heard from Guest Services, Security or any other department on board.   Read Less
Sail Date: March 2013
We don't take many family vacations. Before I booked our cruise, I read these reviews and researched the port (Tampa) and destination (Cozumel) to make sure that we made the best of our time and money. While I can't say we regret ... Read More
We don't take many family vacations. Before I booked our cruise, I read these reviews and researched the port (Tampa) and destination (Cozumel) to make sure that we made the best of our time and money. While I can't say we regret the decision, the best time we had was off the ship. Of course everyone values different aspects of vacations differently, depending on age, interests and expectations. I think Paradise would be best suited for adults who aren't picky about details like decor and entertainment quality. If you like to gamble, drink, party, relax in the adult only areas, or eat lots of food this might be the ship for you. I didn't read many reviews of the Carnival Paradise from the perspective of a family with kids who want to spend a lot of quality time together, so I thought I'd share our experience. Here's our family's pro's and cons: Pros: 1. Quick embark at Tampa port, we were on the ship by 12:30. 2. Ping pong and mini golf were basic but fun 3. Our stateroom steward Putu did a good job and made cute towel animals the kids loved 4. Big shower 5. The towel folding class was fun 6. COZUMEL - beautiful destination, snorkeled at Chankanaab Park and had the best day of our trip! Cons: 1. Our stateroom wasn't ready for an hour after we boarded the ship. Dragging our suitcases all over the ship wasn't fun, and discovering our room in a mess from the previous occupants was not a good way to start off the cruise. They need to either delay embarkation, or offer to store luggage until staterooms are ready. We could have left our things in the hallway outside of our room, but the hall was a mess also and not secure. Frustrating. 2. Overall the ship's decor is dated and tacky, with a few exceptions in the updated spa area, library, serenity deck and public restrooms. Public areas and dining areas were kept fairly clean. Our oceanview stateroom (M226) was fairly worn out and needed a deep cleaning. The cabin was dusty, dated, with dented walls and furniture, blankets and sheets well worn and pilled badly. Our 9 year old was not happy to sleep on a toddler sized thin mattress barely above the floor, but our 12 year old was fine on the bunk bed pull down. We probably could have asked for a larger roll away, but we didn't think it would fit! There was barely enough room to walk to the bathroom with the 4 beds, and you had to climb over the beds to look out the window. Not the most comfortable or pleasant place to spend time together. Hot water was TOO hot, hard to get the shower just right. No conditioner, just shampoo and body wash. Glad we brought our own. Product samples left in the bathroom were not useful. 3. The salt water in the pools was WAY TOO COLD! The kids were SO disappointed, they barely swam. The kids pool was empty most of the time, if that tells you anything. Even the hot tubs weren't heated! This is a big deal for us, because out kids were so looking forward to swimming every day and little other family entertainment was offered. The main pool with the water slide wasn't much warmer. The music was blasting too loud, and partying adults acting rowdy made it less than ideal for families to enjoy. The hot tub under the water slide must have been heated, because kids were packing into it, while the pool wasn't crowded. 4. We had anytime dining. Waited for 20-30 min for table every night, but they gave us a beeper so that wasn't so bad. The food was okay. The dining room food was about the same quality as the buffet, but really slow service. By the end of the cruise we just went to the buffet. Most of the waiters didn't seem to enjoy the silly choreographed dances they had to do, but worked hard to remember our names. Some of the deserts were good, but overall food was not amazing... and we really aren't that picky! Not sure why the chocolate melting cake has such amazing reviews, we didn't like it. Tasted and looked like an very rich barely cooked brownie. Lines in the buffet were long at times. Food service workers were not that friendly. What is up with the tacky, ugly, fake fruit/flower/dessert arrangements? I must have been spoiled with the fresh fruit carvings on our Princess cruise, because I expected more. Kids liked the ice cream machine, and it was always busy. 5. Entertainment was limited for families. Shows with dancing/singing were corny, comedians weren't that funny and sometimes inappropriate. The comedian at the family show we went to joked about getting beaten by his parents as a child and how much he hated school. Not sure why that was supposed to be funny or appropriate for kids. We left early from both. We missed the break dancers who were the most talented because of our sea sickness. (see the next comment) 6. Seasickness hit my DD and I hard on the two at-sea nights. I was hoping the Caribbean would be a smooth ride in spring, but no such luck. It wasn't stormy, just rocky. We couldn't leave our stateroom for fear of puking. The gift shop ran out of Dramamine. I was hoping to buy the ear patches, but they didn't have those either. The $15 bracelets didn't help. 7. Kids did not join the kids' club activities, partly due to sea sickness and mostly because we wanted family time. They may have had more fun if they'd had met other kids there. There were groups of teens roaming around the ship. Overall, we had an adventure as a family and it had some moments of joy. The amazing day we had in Cozumel made the less than amazing cruise worth the experience. Tip - don't pay for an excursion to Chankanaab, just hop on a taxi and have more time and freedom. We were the first one there and had the whole beach and amazing snorkeling area to ourselves in the morning. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2013
We cruised on Carnival back in 2004 (Victory ship) and had an amazing time. I had such high expectations for this trip. Embarkation was smooth, the rooms were clean, or luggage arrived outside our room before we even set sail. We were ... Read More
We cruised on Carnival back in 2004 (Victory ship) and had an amazing time. I had such high expectations for this trip. Embarkation was smooth, the rooms were clean, or luggage arrived outside our room before we even set sail. We were off to a great start! That's the extent of the greatness though. While there were good pieces, most of the rest of the trip was downhill. The food (especially in the main dining room) was sub par. I expected way more. The service was horrible. I wasted $30 on the bottomless soda option. The drink staff only came around once at the beginning of dinner...and unless you were ordering alcohol, they didn't come back to check on you at all...so my soda sat empty for the majority of dinner. More than once, we hadn't even received our entrees yet as other diners were finishing up their dessert. People at our table received their food at different times as well. Very annoying. Oh and don't order the meatloaf. Ever. It looked (and tasted) like cat food out of the can. Camp Carnival was nice for the kids, though I think my kids were even a little bored (at only 2 and 4 years old). It was a good option to get away for a couple of hours of quiet time, but we didn't rely on it as a babysitting service. We maybe used it for 2 hours a day. I also needed a hair dryer. We stopped by guest services the 2nd day at 10 AM and they said they would get it sent up. I went back to the room to shower before dinner at 4PM and still no hairdryer, so we called again. At 5:30...still no dryer and had to call a 3rd time. Finally we got it...but not in time for dinner, so off I went with a nice dress and wet head. Debarkation was horrible. We went down a little early to try to get off ASAP as we had a close call flight to catch. We asked 2 employees which way to get to the gangway, and they pointed us in the right (WRONG!) direction. We found a short line forming and joined in. Shortly after, they turned us alllllll around and we were now at the BACK of the new line! With a 2 year old and 4 year old, this way was NOT fun...not to mention that we missed out scheduled taxi and came too close to missing our flight out of orlando (We literally had to run to our gate...again, with 2 small children). So...would I do carnival again?? yes. Not this boat though. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2012
My wife and I went on a 5 day cruise on the Carnival Paradise to the western caribbean. We stayed at the Comfort Inn on N. Dale Mabrey in Tampa which offered free shuttle service to and from the port. The staff at the motel were very ... Read More
My wife and I went on a 5 day cruise on the Carnival Paradise to the western caribbean. We stayed at the Comfort Inn on N. Dale Mabrey in Tampa which offered free shuttle service to and from the port. The staff at the motel were very friendly and helpful; the motel does need a remodel job in the rooms. Shuttle service to the port was very good, shuttle service from the port was very poor, had a long wait for just 1 shuttle van running. The Carnival Paradise was very clean, the staff was polite and helpful but when taking a shower in our room was a nightmare. I would get the water temp just right and after app. 30 seconds it would get very cold, then after 30 seconds of cols water it would get to hot. I felt like a yo-yo in the shower, in out, in out. We had to request an ice bucket because we were to have a small frig in the room which we didn't. I love ice cream and it seems like every time I went to get some, the 3 machines were giving melted ice cream or they were down for maintence. One earley night they said they had run out of cones but would have some tomorrow and one early night they said they had no power to the machines. The TV's in our room needed to made a anchor and thrown overboard. This is my 5 th. cruise and 3rd. fantasy class ship I have been on and by far the worse. They said it might be a couple of years before the Paradise gets an upgrade but till then I will try other ships.. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2012
This is the third Carnival cruise on which I have sailed. I enjoyed the other two thoroughly, but this one was on the poor side of marginal; and, as a result, I would never go on a Carnival cruise again. The ship itself was poorly ... Read More
This is the third Carnival cruise on which I have sailed. I enjoyed the other two thoroughly, but this one was on the poor side of marginal; and, as a result, I would never go on a Carnival cruise again. The ship itself was poorly maintained from the standpoint of being rusted, stained and run-down. The housekeeping was very good, but there is only so much good housekeeping can make up for poor maintenance. The Paradise was anything but - it was in desperate need of dry dock or retirement! The food was bland, tasteless and offered a very poor choice. No "special" foods were served unless you want to consider the lobster, which was smaller than the shrimp served with it or the "baked Alaska" which was a thin slice of Neapolitan ice cream covered with a thin layer of undercooked meringue. The food offered on the "midnight" buffets was most often over-cooked and cold. There was little variety and lunch and dinner were exactly the same. Worst by far was the poor communication system. We started out well enough with a well-run safety drill, but things went rapidly downhill from there. Lines were cut in half and after waiting for 30 minutes to get to the middle of a debarkation line, it was split and we found ourselves at the end of the line again. There was little information available for the two ports of call, and much of the information that was given was incorrect. At 8:30pm the night before our Cozumel port we received notice that our shore excursion was canceled due to under-booking, and giving instruction to see the Shore Excursion (which was closed) or the Guest Services desk. We were told at Guest Services that there was absolutely nothing they could do to get us on a different tour and were very reluctant to call the Shore Excursion Manager. After about 30 minutes of useless dialog, they finally did call the Manager who was quite accommodating in getting us on a different tour. While were standing to the side of the Guest Services desk, the agent was literally arguing with three other families about a variety of issues they had. In no case was proper resolution obtained by the Guest Services agents. If an employee tells a customer that he/she is unable to perform his/her job, for whatever reason, there is a problem with the manner the company is run. Overall, my entire family, daughter and son-in-law with their three children, were very disappointed with the cruise. Choose a different ship, if not a different cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2012
This was my 4th overall cruise, 3rd on Carnival. Went with my wife as part of a larger group of friends and family. We're locals so there was no air travel or hotel stays involved. We LOVE cruising out of Tampa. It's close, drop ... Read More
This was my 4th overall cruise, 3rd on Carnival. Went with my wife as part of a larger group of friends and family. We're locals so there was no air travel or hotel stays involved. We LOVE cruising out of Tampa. It's close, drop off is a breeze (although the valet attendants have become quite pushy), and self-park is easy. Security screening, check-in and boarding took all of 15 minutes! Last year we sailed around the same date on Paradise's sister ship - Inspiration - and had a thoroughly enjoyable time. As such, we expected the same on Paradise but the experience was far from the same. Once on ship, we had some drinks but the friendly staff we had on Inspiration were nowhere to be found on Paradise. The first bartender in the atrium lobby never smiled and barely spoke (let alone understood) English. We had to point to the draft we wanted! This became a recurring theme throughout the cruise. Bartenders were generally not friendly, slow to serve, and even lazy appearing (preferring guests who ordered beer rather than mixed drinks!) This was the worst at the Casino bar on the Promenade deck. The ship itself was well maintained but did seem to have a smell of sewage, especially on decks 7 and 8. The decor is somewhat dark (darker than Inspiration for sure) and the hallways on our floor (Deck 6 - Upper) were very dark. The room itself was well maintained and our steward was very quick to clean and replenish supplies. However, I never met him once! Usually our cabin steward on previous cruises was very friendly and called us by name and would make a point of introducing him or herself. Not on Paradise. The food in the dining room was very good the first 2 nights but then the menu choices became bland and the food quality seemed to decline as well (additionally, they did not seem to know what "medium-rare" meant.) The wait staff was atrocious. Again, very little English; unable to explain menu items beyond answering "yes"; very rushed; and rarely available for requests. Breakfast dining was even worse - so bad, the seating hostess even warned us one day! Put it this way: the head waiter came around and had introduced himself 3 times before we had gotten coffee! Then it was 25 minutes between our order being placed and our food arriving. The buffet dining was the worst yet. The food was barely edible. I will admit, though, the sandwich bar (they call it "The Deli") did serve up some great sandwiches. Should have stuck with it the whole time! Room service was very slow to answer the phone but delivery was surprisingly quick. They never got the orders entirely correct (ordered wheat bread BLTs and got white - EVERY NIGHT!) but the food was good. We did not see any production shows. We spent most of our time on the pool deck. Seemed to be plenty of chairs. Drink staff was sparse and drink prices have gone up a dollar each since our last cruise a year ago. The one form of entertainment we did take in was ONE of the comedians. I emphasize ONE because apparently on Carnival Paradise they make everyone leave the comedy club AFTER EACH SHOW! So, if you plan correctly and arrive early enough to get a good seat to enjoy the acts, think again. After a pretty good comedian we were literally ordered to leave the club. We were told in order to see the next act (just 20 minutes later) we had to leave through one side of the club, then re-enter through the other side and find new seats! Hearing that, we simply went back to our room and never went back. Disembarkment was slowest I have ever experienced. Ship seemed to arrive late into port to begin with and then the sheer number of people trying leave carrying their luggage meant that even with priority disembarking we didn't leave the ship till nearly 10AM! Overall, we had a fun time simply because of the company we were with. If this had happened with just the 2 of us, I'd probably give this cruise 1 star at most. In the end, I will make it a point to avoid Paradise. Would still probably sail Carnival, but if next time is this bad of an experience, we will start trying other cruise lines. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2012
We flew to Tampa the morning of the cruise with no trouble. A taxi ride is $25.00 no negioation required,standard rate for everyone. Check-in took about 20 minutes. The staff at the port was very organized and things moved smoothly. We ... Read More
We flew to Tampa the morning of the cruise with no trouble. A taxi ride is $25.00 no negioation required,standard rate for everyone. Check-in took about 20 minutes. The staff at the port was very organized and things moved smoothly. We would NOT usually cruise on Spring Break and I am sure never again will we even discuss going on a Spring Break cruise. However, Carnival did a good job handling the number of young people. One problem on this cruise on the Lido deck was the tables were not cleaned reguarly, so if you found a table it was always dirty and you had to literally hunt down someone to clean it for you. On Carnival you must get your own silverware and drinks. I found the food to be good, even better than most cruise ship food in all areas of the ship. There was no adult pool. All pools were extremely full of kids all day long, so I did not even get to enjoy the pool. I really did miss this because the weather was so nice. Chairs were always full with people leaving stuff on them all day long, so forget it. Even the adult only hot tub was full of children often with their parents. There was two adult hot tubs on back in the serenity area, but no pool to cool off in plus you had to climb quite a few stairs to get to it. It was also always very full. I really missed using the pool and hot tubs on this cruise. Cabin R229 Room had a great window, but a big box (You had to climb over) messed up the whole room. Shower was great!! However you could hear everything going on at the bottom of the ship, so noisy some nights you could not sleep.The Carnival Paradise does NOT have a promoada deck, which I greatly missed. Also two nights there was NOT a production show of any kind. Young adults were loud all over the ship in the bars and etc. and everywhere was crowded. The most crowded ship I have ever been on. The production shows were really enjoyable. One comedian was enjoyable, the other one was just too nasty for me to even listen to. I mean really bad!! Embarkment went smoothly. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2012
We love to cruise, and thought we would take this little getaway close to home, since we live in Southwest Florida. This was probably the least successful of the 7 Carnival cruises we have gone on. But first let me mention the ... Read More
We love to cruise, and thought we would take this little getaway close to home, since we live in Southwest Florida. This was probably the least successful of the 7 Carnival cruises we have gone on. But first let me mention the positives... Our waitstaff and the service crew in general were very friendly and accommodating. The ship is very well kept and clean, even though she will be heading into drydock in 2 weeks. The pool staff is on top of "lounge hogs" and promptly removed towels that were left unattended for more than half an hour. The food was not as good as other Carnival ships we have been on, but it wasn't horrible, just ok, with the noticeable exception of my favorite dessert, warm melting chocolate cake, which is always a winner. Perhaps if the Paradise had had an alternate dining venue, we would have sprung for some extra $$ and taken advantage of it. We knew going in that this ship did not have balcony cabins except in suites, but we did miss going out on the balcony in the morning with our coffee. If that feature is important to you, realize this ship does not have regular balcony cabins. I cannot comment on the ports, because we have seen both of them a jillion times, and opted to stay on the ship and relax by the pool while the ship was docked. The big negative for us was the lack of activities on the ship during sea time. There was the occasional trivia and bingo, one night no show was scheduled, and the main thing they scheduled was karaoke a couple of times a day. The shows they did have were pretty awful. Every afternoon we took a 3 hour nap as there was little else going on. All in all, it was nice to spend some time with my husband and have someone else cooking our meals, but that was the extent of our enjoyment. We had much better time on our one week Carnival cruises, and would probably not do this again. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2011
This ship is nicely decorated and well laid out. Our party wanted to relax completely, so we skipped getting dressed up for anything, including the dining rooms and shows. Instead, we enjoyed hanging out with one another and eating the ... Read More
This ship is nicely decorated and well laid out. Our party wanted to relax completely, so we skipped getting dressed up for anything, including the dining rooms and shows. Instead, we enjoyed hanging out with one another and eating the above-average food in the Lido Deck Buffet. I was impressed with how well the traffic flows in that venue, even when crowded. Also, we appreciated the Early Embarkation Check-In process, and thought Disembarkation was also handled fairly well. That's the Good News. Now, the Bad News: First, there seem to be way too few public restrooms on this ship, and the restrooms that do exist are small, cramped, and really filthy - all the time. Disgusting! Second, there are nowhere near enough busers in the Lido Deck Buffet, and those who are there are slow, sloppy, and not well supervised or motivated. Given the number of passengers aboard, this restaurant needs to turn its tables over quickly and professionally, but the opposite is what actually happens - tables sit for long periods, piled with dirty dishes, while passengers search endlessly for a clean table. Passengers often ended up busing tables themselves, just to have a place to eat their now-cold food. Tables were also infrequently wiped clean, so surfaces felt sticky and unhealthy. Again, disgusting! Third, on this cruise there was no effort made by Carnival to alert passengers to the dangers of passing illnesses around or to instruct passengers to keep their hands well washed and to use the provided hand sanitizer. Fourth, the midships elevators were Out of Order throughout the cruise, causing jams at the fore and aft elevators (since the ship was reportedly Sold Out). Finally, the room temperatures were never properly adjusted for the unusually cold weather that prevailed throughout this cruise. Many passengers mentioned how uncomfortably chilly their staterooms were. Such details really do matter, even to "good sports." Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2011
Carnival Paradise One disappointing thing to note which was totally out of the cruise lines control was the weather, we left an unusually warm London for an equally unusual cold and wet LA. This may have had an impact on some of our ... Read More
Carnival Paradise One disappointing thing to note which was totally out of the cruise lines control was the weather, we left an unusually warm London for an equally unusual cold and wet LA. This may have had an impact on some of our thoughts about the cruise. Embarkation The check in process in Long beach was quick and efficient. The lady who check us in was really friendly and worth mentioning. Wish we had taken her name down. We do question some of the security checks and the attention of the people operating the metal detectors, we noticed a person in front of us trigger the lights on the machine, but the operator was busy with someone else in front and the trigger went unnoticed by security staff. Food Our first food experience was the Paris Buffet and its very dated decor. The servers on every occasion were friendly and helpful. The food was average and to be fair was not bad for the price we paid for the cruise. On some visits to the Buffet (we ate here on all but one occasion) not all the advertised dishes were available at the start of the service. Dinning space was constantly at a premium and the crew were slow to clear the tables. The gulls were most amusing and I have the feeling they stayed with the ship throughout the Trip. We ate only once in one of the main dining room. The food was excellent. The Matre'd was very helpful and due to our jet lag managed to fit us in with the any time dinning instead of our late dinning option. The Idea of Mongolian BBQ on deck is a great addition, but speed of service needs to be looked at. It took over 30 mins on one occasion and it was a quiet time. Cabin Our luggage was delivered quickly and by the time we made it to the cabin. We were greeted by our friendly stewardess. This was the only time we met or spoke. The cabin itself was dated and showed signs of wear. At all times the cabin was kept clean. I could be wrong, but did Carnival used to give a nice Chocolate at Turn Down? If so they don't any more! The rooms were noisy and the loud neighbours who were seemingly deaf thought it acceptable to shout out conversations along with other "Young" Neighbours who felt it necessary to shout at all hours of the day and night, clearly under the influence of alcohol. Entertainment Throughout the most disappointing element of the cruise was the "Entertainment". We did enjoy the comedians and the one production show we got to see. What we did not like was the fact the cruise director tended to speak at a very fast pace and was difficult to understand. In addition to this the lack of Entertainment on the evening of the Esanada. There was no entertainment in the main showroom! The entertainment was also fairly nonexistent on the sea day, the odd quiz and an ice carving demo. Memories of Carnival a few years ago seem to show a general decline in the standard of entertainment. Disembarkation We chose the self assist process and found this much faster and convenient than the standard disembarkation process. It was also great for the Non -â€"US immigration channel was much faster than the US Channel for a change. General The level of hard sell seems to have been dramatically reduced ( and greatly appreciated) on board. The public toilets in the ship were consistently in a disgusting condition, but this seemed more due to our fellow shipmates rather than poor management by the crew. BE AWARE: The system Carnival use for Charging its guests on its sail and sign card has some down sides. All though the charges were all correct and present, we noticed that not only do Carnival "Block" a deposit against your credit card, each time you charge to your sail and sign card an additional amount is also Blocked, then once you leave the ship the full amount of charges is taken from your credit card but all the "Blocks" remain on the card for over a week. I could imagine this could cause some embarrassment for some. We also noticed that Carnival also credit back cash deposits to the customer as cheques. How does this work if you are from the UK? Read Less
Sail Date: October 2011
Our family of five sailed the Paradise on 10/17/11 out of Long Beach for the 4-day cruise. Our last cruise was on the same ship/itinerary in 2008. Total cost was $220 each per person U.S. which an interior and a porthole room on lower ... Read More
Our family of five sailed the Paradise on 10/17/11 out of Long Beach for the 4-day cruise. Our last cruise was on the same ship/itinerary in 2008. Total cost was $220 each per person U.S. which an interior and a porthole room on lower Deck-5. Embarkation out of Long Beach was very smooth. We arrived at 3:15 P.M. and the wait time was about 15 minutes to check in and obtain the room keys. ROOMS: When the interior room door was opened, we were immediately greeted by a sewery rotten-egg odor. I notified the cabin steward who treated the drain with a formaldehyde-like solution that seemed to work for a day or two. I later learned that the ship's sewer smell could be detected in a good number of places on the ship, especially on outdoor decks. (Where it vents I presume) The rooms were basic and comfortable, but the rooms were starting to show signs of wear. The mattresses were sagging in the middle and there was wear on cabinets and in bathrooms where repairs had been made, but all were functional. Room steward service was excellent BTW. Friendly and attentive. SHIP: One of my favorite features of Paradise are the yellow leather seats that adorn the Promenade deck and the Queen Mary Lounge. They are plush and comfortable. The seats are incredibly well-designed along the windows on the promenade deck so one can tuck in seemingly privately along a window & sit and read a book while both watching people and the views outside. Overall, the ship is starting to show signs of age with rust visible in some places and decks stained in food areas from the near constant barrage of food and drink spills. In summary, she could really use a renovation. CHILD PROGRAMS: The teens didn't participate in Club-O, not much to draw them in. 11-year old used the game room once in CC. He also participated in the break- dancer instruction class with Circle-C and he enjoyed the program very much. ACTIVITIES: Activities were varied and plentiful. Shows and entertainment were very good... especially the comedians! FOOD: I rated the food in the dining room a 3 - just OK. The food variety and staffing seemed like it had been reduced. Service was obviously suffering, not just with our table but with others around it. Like with most businesses these days, I chalked it up to cost-reductions. Lido deck 24 hour buffet style dining: Also rated it a 3 - About the same quality as Hometown Buffet - If you expect more, you'll be disappointed. Costs: Expect many enticements on board from photos, duty free shopping, artwork, temporary tattoos, spa services, drinks etc. You are on vacation right? But, carefully monitor expenditures on the sail & sign card so that you don't end up with a shockingly large bill at the end of your cruise. One couple was moaning about their $700 bill at the end of the cruise. One money-saving tip if you patronize the bar is to get the daily tropical drink special in a regular glass instead of the souvenir cup. $4.95 vs. $7.50. Overall experience: Overall experience was good. The ship was full because the off-season price was attractive. It's called the Fun Ship and people seemed to be having fun. We will likely try a different line next time, but we will also expect to pay more. The price is commensurate with the quality overall. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2011
A group of 7 of us went on this last weekend and although we had a great time I truly think it was because of the company of each other rather then the cruise itself. I have been on may cruises from 3 days to 14 days and so I know what ... Read More
A group of 7 of us went on this last weekend and although we had a great time I truly think it was because of the company of each other rather then the cruise itself. I have been on may cruises from 3 days to 14 days and so I know what to expect and I got exactly that but a little less.... First off lets start when we were booking our cruise. There were 7 of us and so 3 people had to share a room (never again) When we told the lady on the phone we wanted to all be together she assured us that she had done so. Nope....we were all the same floor but we were everywhere. The room with 3 in was so so so small they should not make it a 3 people in room. The basically throw in a cot every night in the walkway. We never once met our room attendant and that's a first but the room was clean so I have nothing to complain about. oh....if you are reading this before going on this ship bring a electrical cord because there is only ONE outlet in the whole room! Now I have to say the food was the worst I have had on any cruise. Not too much to pick from, it is left out for long periods of times and some of it just had no flavor. I stuck with the sandwich bar and did the Mongolian BBQ once...actually the best eats on the deck but be prepared the line is long. The Dining room was actually pretty good. My group tried to eat in there for every meal so we could actually have good, hot food. Our waiter was GREAT. I wish I could remember his name but I can't but he was the so so so great...table 237. He knew our names within a half hour on the first night and what we liked to drink. You normally get that on a 7 or more day cruise but not on a 3 so it was a nice touch. They had a lot of silly things to do around the ship on the day at sea but nothing that is must do. You really do make the most of it and go to spend time with your friends. You get what you pay for. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2011
CARNIVAL PARADISE Overall experience of my 4 day cruise to Ensenada and Long Beach was just okay. Getting on the ship was fairly easy and did not take longer than 25 minutes. This was my second time on this same ship and when I was on ... Read More
CARNIVAL PARADISE Overall experience of my 4 day cruise to Ensenada and Long Beach was just okay. Getting on the ship was fairly easy and did not take longer than 25 minutes. This was my second time on this same ship and when I was on board the ship it was exactly the same as i saw it in 2008. SHIP - The ship is in deperate need of renovation. It was built in 1998 or 1999 but you can see the wear and tear it has had over the past years. The smell was horrible. The decks outside smelled like sewer and when we walked into our rooms a bad odor whiffed through our noses. ROOM - Overall the room we stayed in was very small but that was what i was expecting. Rooms were clean and comfy, there are alot of electrical outlets so you dont have to worry about that. Me, my friend, and my brother all stayed in one room. The room did not have any windows so we couldnt tell what time of day it wss! overall, i would rate the rooms a decent 4 out of 5. Remember it aint a grand suite FOOD - The buffet was terrible, no effort put into the food whatsoever. Mongolian barbecue was very bad. The dining food was good though. Waiters were very nice but took forever to get our food because of lacked employees. It was a total of almost and hour ande a half to nearly two hours at the dinner table. i would rate the food a 2 out of 5 ENTERTAINMENT - The entertainment on the ship was pretty good actually. They have the Punchliner Comedy CLub which was very funny. Families and children can go to watch this show until they start having the adults only comedy. The karaoke was awesome! It was fun to see kids and adults go up there and sing a song and get a laugh out of it. FOR THE TEENAGERS, ehh not so much. My son who is 16 did not feel that there was enought to do for teenagers. Of course, they have Club 02 and my son went in to apply and only about 7 teens were applied out of a total of 50 kids on the ship! I feel that Carnival really needs to bump up the activities to attract in more teenagers because that is not a good thing. Camp Carnival is always fun for the small children and have always enjoyed it. The musical on the ship was very good so entertainment for ADULTs 4 out of 5 enteretainment for TEENAGERS 2 out of 5.( alot of the time my son and his friend were in there room doing nothing because they did not enjoy Clun 02) SERVICE - The service on the ship was very nice. Our waiters were very nice but we barely saw them because they were so busy with other tables, our sir maid was very nice and greeted us as we entered our room. Employees were very nice and that was a plus. The cooks obviously dont care about there job or its Carnival who buys the cheap food and gives it to the chefs to put on there backs. OVERALL EXPERIENCE ON THE SHIP - My overall experience is a 3 out of 5. Its a cheap cruise so YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. If you are looking for something extravagent, do not cruise on the paradise. It smells like sewer, food is bad, clubs for teens is bad, and needs a new renovation. Luckily though, the Carnival Paradise will be receiving the 2.0 update in 2015 for the Paradise. It is in desperate need of renovation. Carnival, I would seriously consider transporting the shipe to other locations because Ensenada is horendously terrible. It is ugly snd on every block I walked on in Ensenada i get bombarded by the people that live there and they want me to buy there products. One mexican put a necklace around my neck without asking and told me "it looked good on me so pay me the money". I would never cruise on the Carnival Paradise again. It is not outstanding and is not huge. The only pretty good thing on the ship was the entertainment. The entertainment though is not HAVE TO DO kind of activities. I did like Catalina though, it is pretty, beautiful, and a nice small little place to look and shop around. In conclusion, if you are looking at this review and planning to go on your first cruise, Carnival Paradise is an exception but as a second, it is not going to exceed your expectations. No wonder its that cheap. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2011
My wife and I took this cruise to get away for a few days and relax. My wife loves to dance and there aren't a lot of places where we live that have the music she enjoys dancing to. We had taken this cruise with our kids several ... Read More
My wife and I took this cruise to get away for a few days and relax. My wife loves to dance and there aren't a lot of places where we live that have the music she enjoys dancing to. We had taken this cruise with our kids several years ago and knew that they had places to dance on this ship. The Evening meal in the Elation Dining Room was very nice. Good portions with some very interesting variety that made dining there very enjoyable. The wait staff was excellent and the people we sat with at dinner were a lot of fun. The ports of call were relaxing as well. We didn't book any shore excursions through the boat but found a great zipline tour in Catalina. However!!! I'm not sure if I just wasn't noticing when we took our kids with us a few years ago but the food this time on Lido deck (Paris buffet and the Grill)was sup-par to say the least. I avoid McDonalds because of the bulk mentality of their food but by the end of this cruise I was craving the HUGE step up that McDonalds would be. (okay I'm being dramatic but it really was disappointing) The food was very generic, tasteless and in most cases stale. They have 2 main food lines inside and out and they pretty much served the exact same things for breakfast. Not to mention that for some reason the ship is setup so you have to stand in line for 5 minutes to get anything to eat. There were no original dishes, nothing that was in the least bit exciting, the ice-milk was just that. Definetely not Ice CREAM. They tried to pass some sort of wet spoungy material as cheese cake and it's the first time I've had hash-browns that I had to tear apart with my mouth like beef Jerky. I know this is quick getaway cruise that appears to be aimed at the population of Southern Cal but when I have gone on cruises in the past the food has been the highlight. Not so with the Paradise this trip. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2011
Took a recent cruise we took on Carnival Paradise. We have been with carnival twice before, and on several other cruise lines. This time I took my entire family and they were so excited about the experience since we had talked it up. ... Read More
Took a recent cruise we took on Carnival Paradise. We have been with carnival twice before, and on several other cruise lines. This time I took my entire family and they were so excited about the experience since we had talked it up. However, within an hour of being on the ship my brother asked me why the employees were treating us as if we were prisoners being transported. I did not have an answer for him and this was the first time I felt like it too. Not sure if it is an attitude difference between the pacific crew and the Caribbean crew. We take most our trips in the Caribbean and are always met with smiles, but not this time. Not only was the attitude horrible, there was also a lot of things physically wrong. Below are the ones I remember. Needless to say, we did not have a good time. It is truly unfortunate, I wanted to make sure my parents, my brother and his family had trusted me in selecting carnival and the whole thing made me look bad in front of them. • The TV in the room did not work. It took a trip from three different people over a four hour period to get it to work. That is a lot of wasted time on a 36 hour cruise • The vanity in our room was missing a mirror. My wife had to stand sideways to try to get ready for dinner so she can look in the half mirror available. It may be okay at home, but leaves a bad taste when the whole idea of a vacation is to have everything go right. • The pool was freezing cold. We went in and got out once and that was pretty much the extend of our use of it. The vacation includes the use of the pool, is it unreasonable to expect it to be reasonably warm so we can go in? • This was the worst of all of them. When I checked my bank account upon our return, there was a charge difference for 12.13 from the last statement I had received. Called customer service and they said it was for in-room beverage. We did not use any of the items that was in the room, and I ALWAYS make sure those things are exactly where they were when we got in before we leave. The bottle of water and six soda cans were intact in their original location when we left. Yet, I was charged and took half hour of my time to get my money back. This is sneaky and disgusting. The amazing thing was that the agent was so casual about it, as if it is routine that she gets these calls. Nice way to steal few more bucks off of the passenger even after they left the ship. Once again, I know some of these are petty items (not the sneaky charge though), but we did pay a substantial amount of money for a 36 hour cruise and we expect everything to be perfect. The sneaky part about adding the beverage to the bill is just really despicable. I wish I had the time and energy to follow up with past passengers and see if this is a common behavior for carnival and see if there is potential for a class action lawsuit. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2011
I did not check reviews prior to booking this short cruise for my family (4 kids (9/8/8/2) and wife). Although my wife and I have cruised before we had children, we wanted to try one with the kids and thought a short cruise would be a good ... Read More
I did not check reviews prior to booking this short cruise for my family (4 kids (9/8/8/2) and wife). Although my wife and I have cruised before we had children, we wanted to try one with the kids and thought a short cruise would be a good trial. I see now from other reviews, I got the exact experience I should have expected. Getting on the ship was smooth and easy. The cabins were typical and perfectly acceptable. The cabin steward was friendly and always attentive. Food: The food was not that good. We did eat at the buffets mostly and the food was passable but I remembered it being really good (that may have been a false memory from 10 years ago). The one dining room breakfast I had was horrible. I ordered a waffle. It came out rubbery and cold. This could not have been made that day. Activities: The kids loved (can't be overstated) the kids programs on the ship. All four of them spent a lot of time in those programs and the people in charge really seemed to enjoy the kids. This was a highlight of the cruise. Overall Perspective: This cruise was filled with early 20-somethings getting drunk. The language was offensive and embarrassing with all of the kids around. Many guys seemed to have trouble understanding that they needed to wear a shirt around food service areas. The females had trouble acting appropriately also (blow-up appendages in the buffet area at 5pm?)? Security seemed to try to reign it in but they couldn't. Parties in the cabins spilling in to the hallways. Many of these people acted as if they have never had alcohol before. Finally, I would not return to Carnival. We may try a longer cruise and I will definitely check the reviews first. Read Less
Carnival Paradise Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.5 0.0
Public Rooms 3.5 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.5 0.0
Enrichment 4.0 0.0
Service 4.5 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 3.0 0.0

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