219 Carnival Valor Cruise Reviews

It seems Carnival sends their worst ships to New Orleans and cuts services and amenities. In talking to people who have sailed from other ports, Carnival has maintained the services and amenities on those ships. It would be different if ... Read More
It seems Carnival sends their worst ships to New Orleans and cuts services and amenities. In talking to people who have sailed from other ports, Carnival has maintained the services and amenities on those ships. It would be different if Carnival were treating other ports the same, but that is not what I am discovering. I sailed the Carnival Triumph in 2017, which was sorely in need of upgrading. Now, they completely renovated the Triumph, renamed it Sunrise, and moved it to another port! My most recent sailing, on the Carnival Valor, was much the same as on the Triumph. The Valor must be their worst ship at the moment. There was a good bit of rust outside on our balcony, some of the room furnishings were almost threadbare, and the room decor did not coordinate at all. I'm not being picky about the room colors. Most of the room was orange furnishings, including the carpet with a busy, orange pattern. The drapes had blue, white, and beige stripes. They had painted the metal at the top of the room with pink paint. Maybe they are in the beginning of a makeover. It wasn't the end of the world, but I really expect better for the New Orleans port. There were some pluses for the room. I loved the layout and that the lighting could be subdued. There was also a small refrigerator. The small bed was super comfortable! The rest of the ship had some very pretty items, but it was coordinated about as well as the bedrooms. It was just kind of weird, like they might be slowly doing a makeover. The staff was good, but there were not enough of them. I could see the strain on the faces of many, even with their best efforts to be cheerful. The only room steward always seemed to be in a hurry. We had to call room service and wait on hold for ice every day. The room steward no longer automatically cleans your room twice a day, but I don't really mind that change because I am a late sleeper. I just made my own bed every day. Some of the hot tubs didn't work, which is a big deal to me. None of the hot tubs were hot, just lukewarm. Much of the entertainment at night started at the same time as the late dinner seating, so I didn't make it to much of the entertainment. There used to be multiple free items on the room service menu and free lobster on Captains night. Now, most of the room service items are for a fee and the lobster is no longer free on Captain's night. The prices are very reasonable, but, still, it used to be free. The trip in 2017 on the Triumph was the exact same way with services and amenities. If Carnival were making these changes on all their ships, I would understand. However, they seem to be sending their worst ships to New Orleans and cutting services for those cruises. I thought when they moved the Triumph from New Orleans and brought in the Valor, it would be better. It wasn't. I think if/when they move the Valor to renovate it, they will again put their worst ship in New Orleans. I'm pretty sure that was my last Carnival cruise out of New Orleans. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
The Good • Room Steward service was actually very good. He asked us up front if wanted our rooms serviced once or twice per day. That was the first time I had ever been asked that question. With three people in our smallish balcony ... Read More
The Good • Room Steward service was actually very good. He asked us up front if wanted our rooms serviced once or twice per day. That was the first time I had ever been asked that question. With three people in our smallish balcony room we requested twice a day. Both ice and towels were replenished every day. • Bar service was also very good. We got the Cheers package, and certainly didn’t break even this time. Carnival has a decent cocktail menu that is worth exploring. The crowds on the ship sometimes made getting up to the bartenders a challenge. You just have to horn in and raise your voice a little. The Lobby Bar and Casino Bar stood out for us. • Main Dining Room service and food quality were certainly decent to very good. I was a little disappointed that the traditional surf and turf on the more formal night has been completely replaced by the upcharge menu. This is a noticeable cut to us veteran cruisers. You can get a hanger steak and some sort of seafood any night on the menu, but it is not quite the same thing. Expected more from formal night menu. • Both Embarkation and Debarkation were painless. Since we didn’t have a car, and we checked our bags with the stevedore downstairs, it almost seemed like a walk on and walk off situation. Using the express option, we showed our Passport, got in a cab, and left for the airport. Limiting luggage to a roller board and a personal bag helps tremendously. • Scarlett’s Restaurant was as good as any premium dining experience I have had on Holland America or Royal Caribbean. Steaks were expertly prepared. Art for the Table desert has to be experienced to really fully grasp. Delicious and entertaining. Service was 5*. Sadly, the restaurant never seemed fully booked on the whole cruise. • For the first time in 15 cruises, I actually had to use the Ship Hospital when I developed a case of pneumonia. The very kind female physician from South Africa could not have been better. Steroids, nebulizers, and antibiotics were ordered exactly as they would have been at home by a good family physician. She made a point to call and check on me after one very rough breathless night in a hot room. The Bad • The ship was crowded. With 3,700+ passengers on board, the 800 people above typical double occupancy could be felt all over the ship. Lots of lines for just about everything including the elevators. Mid-ship pool was a mob scene that I totally avoided. Carnival just does not do as great a job as RCI at dispersing the crowds with activities of equal draw in different parts of the ship simultaneously. • The Lido Buffet for breakfast was absolutely the same every day. On Day One, I was satisfied that it was the quality of a decent cafeteria. If you are going to eat here every day mix it up with the omelet station or eggs cooked to order. They are almost hidden along the side walls as you approach the buffet. This buffet pales in comparison to any one of Holland America’s. Sometime you just long for a pastry and a bowl of Muesli - not the strange pale sausage covered in onions, reconstituted eggs, and frozen hash brown patties. No problem finding corn flakes and fruit loops if that is more your speed. • Some of our party were smokers, and this meant that we all spent a good deal of time in the smoking areas. Tucked away on an obscure portion of the starboard side of deck 10, Cocktail service was really very sparse in the largest smoking area, and a simple trip to the bathroom requires a trip to another deck. Though clean, public bathrooms seemed fairly scarce overall. Another more agreeable choice is a small area on deck 3 starboard exterior deck – at least it was convenient to the Lobby Bar. Non-smokers would have to go out of their way to be offended here. Lastly, 4-5 bar stools jammed into the casino end of the Dream Bar is the only interior choice for smokers. I guess this is good news overall for non-smokers, but don’t complain when smokers are five deep behind five bar stools in the casino. • Though I did not think the ship was in bad shape at all, the overall design was not my favorite. Decks 3 and 4 present you with the “You can’t’ get there from here” dilemma if you dine in the Washington Dining Room. Back up to deck five to cross over. You will repeat this maneuver many times. • The muster drill was a bit of a mob scene. Cruise Director, Kevin’s very acerbic voice booming over the loudspeakers did not help lower the temperament or the temperature. It certainly wasn’t a great introduction or welcome being jammed onto another obscure exterior deck on level four that I never saw again. The Ugly • Our room was way too WARM. Any sailing out of New Orleans in August will come with heat, but did not expect this in my stateroom. It was reported twice and we received four pre-printed cards that stated that our room met Carnival standards for temperature control. I witnessed one of these inspections. Indeed, the vent was 72 degrees. The only problem was that it did not blow sufficient air into the room. The two letters received from guest services stating that it was important that we call them immediately to make sure our issues with our room temperature were resolved - not helpful. These phone calls just resulted in two more pre-printed cards. It just pissed me off even more when I was told that fans were reserved for those with medical problems. Alas, out of the blue, they did provide a fan. It did help a great deal, but the room was still very hot for a person who is sitting on the side of the bed all night long with a full-blown case of pneumonia. Having never experienced this myself, I have a new respect for my patients who suffer for respiratory problems. • Others reported that their room was a bit cold. Avoid the whole block of rooms that include stateroom 7396 back toward mid-ship if you don’t want a hot room. Many of our neighbors said the same thing. Too warm, but I am sure it meets Carnival’s standards for climate control. Would I do it Again? Nope. Not this time, and that is a first time ever saying that in 15 cruise reviews from RCI’s old Song of Norway to Cunard’s QM2. This ship did not meet my personal standards for comfort. There are many varieties of “Fun”, and I am not swearing off Carnival as a whole, but I am the entire crowded Conquest class of their ships. DONE! I will also stick to longer cruises outside of summer or any other holidays, as I am more compatible with that Journey’s crowd and I am not even a senior yet. There are things that really shined about this ship, but I am afraid that the bad and the ugly outweighed the good on this trip. One last note. The Shore Excursion to Uxmal is worth every penny. This is a world class heritage site that would definitely use Carnival to tour. Progresso is a great stop if you don't go to Progresso. Too logistical to do on your own, but they do a great job for less money. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was our 7th Carnival Cruise and our 30th cruise. We chose this cruise for a relaxing time after a week of touring in New Orleans. Also, we had one of our daughters and her family. The kiddos had a blast going up and down the ... Read More
This was our 7th Carnival Cruise and our 30th cruise. We chose this cruise for a relaxing time after a week of touring in New Orleans. Also, we had one of our daughters and her family. The kiddos had a blast going up and down the waterslide, over and over and over. There was something sharp at the bottom and both kids scraped their feet and came out bleeding at one point. There was nowhere to sit in the shade on the pool deck. We went to Serenity, but children were not allowed there. ALL of the lounges were filled on the main deck. The kid's program seemed to feature too much time on computer games. The dining room staff were stellar. They paid particular attention to our little ones and made them feel so special at "Showtime". The singers and dancers onboard were very good. We enjoyed the first and last production but were totally disappointed with the Country night. The whole family had a great time at the crafting with Georgia. We played bingo and that was soooo annoying. There were only 3 games and too much chatter trying to keep it interesting. It seemed childish at times. Guy's Burgers and the Blue Iguana had decent lunches. The dining room meals were disappointing. Not one meal was worth talking about. Since this was a shorter cruise, we think people used it as a time to get their drink on. At one point, a man was so intoxicated, we thought he would fall over the railing at one of the evening shows. The casino was tight and the machines did not entertain. It was like feeding hungry monsters. The cruise director, TJ, did his job well. Debarkation was a NIGHTMARE. Long waits with nothing to do and no food or drinks. We would probably not go on this cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We choose this cruise as a last minute get away. It was very crowded lots of unsupervised children. My husband was in a hot tub but got taken over by children and got mug shots by parents.. he was only adult. The ships mustard station had ... Read More
We choose this cruise as a last minute get away. It was very crowded lots of unsupervised children. My husband was in a hot tub but got taken over by children and got mug shots by parents.. he was only adult. The ships mustard station had us standing outside which was hard on people with small children, and health issues. Someone passed out near us. The hot tubs in the adult area were full and frequently closed. The pool was closed but understood that someone threw up in it. Even though we heard the comic was not that good we went. Saw lots of people get up and walk out.. He really wasn't that good... sorry but we tried and stayed to the end. On another note the 80'S show was very nice and enjoyed. Because we did not think about the timing of the cruise, the lines were very long on the ship. It almost seemed like they were short on staff in many areas. The dinning room hand us completely empty books. Lol he looked very busy and it took a lil while to flag him down to get the menu. We booked a balcony for the first time it was actually the best and we were able to retreat to our room from the crowds. Room steward was great and took care of us. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
I can't blame the cruise line for the weather conditions but the water was so rough and the ship rocked so much that when we arrived at Progreso, three of the four of us were so seasick that we spent the day in our cabin. Lost the ... Read More
I can't blame the cruise line for the weather conditions but the water was so rough and the ship rocked so much that when we arrived at Progreso, three of the four of us were so seasick that we spent the day in our cabin. Lost the money spent on our excursion. Overheard another passenger say that a staff member had told him that it was always rough sailing around Progreso. On a side note: don't waste your money on the unlimited soda package because it is NOT worth it. The only places you can get soda is at one of the bars or room service. Sodas are not covered by the package through room service so you will pay extra. You're only allowed 1 soda per room card per trip to the bar. (But one person with one room card can order a bucket of bottles of beer) seems a little lopsided. Faster to the Fun - if you don't have it, get it! We didn't purchase it and how I wish we had. You bypass the LONG lines at embarkation to get processed to get on the ship faster and disembark before everyone else. The cabins are a little tight if there are more than two people in the room but the beds are comfortable and there is PLENTY of storage space (closets, drawers and under the beds). If you are bored, it's your own fault. Every minute of the day there is something to do. Our big dilemma is trying to do everything. I highly recommend the cooking demonstration at the steakhouse. You get to taste it all and it was SOOO GOOD! We only ate in the dining room once - on formal night. The appetizers were excellent, the entree left a little to be desired and we weren't offered dessert. We weren't upset though, there is more than enough food on the ship. You will not go hungry. Embarkation was very well organized chaos. It reminded me a little of standing in line to vote in the last presidential election only faster. LOL! There are workers everywhere telling you where to go and what line to be in so getting lost really would be hard. Disembarking, however, was not as smooth. You are called by deck # if you are not a VIP or bought the faster to the fun. Unfortunately, people didn't listen or follow the instructions and were forcing their way into the lines to get off the ship even thought their deck number hadn't been called. It was a mad house of shoulder to shoulder people trying to drag their bags down 4 flights of stairs. Next time I will check our bags and choose a later disembarkation time. I don't mind the waiting, I was prepared for that. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We have sailed on this ship in the past out of Miami. We were looking for a 4 night cruise out of New Orleans or Mobile so chose this ship. Embarkation was easy other than navigating the New Orleans traffic. It took us more than 1 hour ... Read More
We have sailed on this ship in the past out of Miami. We were looking for a 4 night cruise out of New Orleans or Mobile so chose this ship. Embarkation was easy other than navigating the New Orleans traffic. It took us more than 1 hour to get from the entrance to the port to inside the parking garage. Our check in time was 12-12:30 and we planned to arrive at the port about 11:45. That wasn't enough time! Overall the ship is in good condition. The crew was friendly. We purchased the Cheers package, after much debate, calculating, more debate, etc. I don't plan to calculate anymore but I think it paid for itself. However, I would not order this for a longer cruise, that's just too much daily drinking for us. Food: In a nutshell it was bad. School cafeteria is the best description. The main dining room was like an assembly line. Our waiters were not personable and it did not feel like a fine dining event at all. The Lido Buffet was equally as bad. The bright spots were Guys Burgers, yummy! Blue Iguana was also good. We ate at Scarlett's 2 nights of the 4 because it was delicious. Dress Code: Forget it. Wear what you want because no one on Carnival cares. The bright spot of our trip was The Alchemy Bar. The servers, Ivana, Maureen and Amel were wonderful and the drinks were the best! We did a mixology class with Ivana that was a lot of fun and we learned how to make some of their cocktails. Try the Basil Drop, Seduction Martini or Cucumber Sunrise! I rate this as average. It had been about 5 years since we had been on Carnival and it may be 5 more. I think we will go back to the other cruise lines for the quality of the food and service. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
So I have been on several Carnival cruises and I have to say this was my least favorite. I chose this cruise mainly for my mom since it was her first time cruising I thought this ship was large enough to not feel the waves so much and the ... Read More
So I have been on several Carnival cruises and I have to say this was my least favorite. I chose this cruise mainly for my mom since it was her first time cruising I thought this ship was large enough to not feel the waves so much and the distance to the port was close enough I didn’t have to take an extra day off work to drive there. We did purchase faster to the fun which was a complete waste of money in my opinion. First things first - port of New Orleans AWFUL!!! Our check in time was 12:30-1, I don’t remember it giving me any other option. We arrived at the port area around 11:30 and then waited in a car line for about 45 min to park in the port parking garage ($88 to park for the duration of the cruise). We finally made our way up the parking structure to the roof only to find there were NO PARKING SPACES LEFT. Luckily we ran into apparently the only parking attendant working that day who had me and the twenty other cars behind me follow him back down to deck 3 where they opened up several blocked off spots. It was nearly 1pm by the time we finally got through check in and on the ship. Seemed like most folks were already on the ship so kind of defeated the purpose of having the faster to the fun pass. Bottom line - if you can park somewhere other than the port and shuttle/taxi/Uber in - do it. The ship itself was ok, you can tell it’s kind of older and you can see the wear and tear, but the crew did a great job on keeping things clean. The ship seemed generally very crowded and cramped everywhere the whole cruise. One thing I did notice was there were kids EVERYWHERE! Not sure if this ship had a kids club but it didn’t seem like it. The ship did have an adults only pool with two hot tubs in the back and the serenity area in the front. Our cabin was ok. Would probably book midship next time. Food was pretty good. We only ended up doing sit down dinner one night. All of the other cruises I’d been on the waiters encouraged people to try what they wanted, if you wanted 4 appetizers and 2 entrees go for it. I felt the waiter we had was making people feel guilty for ordering that way. It was awkward so we just chose not to go back. We just did the buffet the other nights, which was good, had a lot of the same entrees as the dining room. Entertainment was alright. We did see two of the theater shows. My mom really enjoyed those, I thought they were kind of cheesy but appreciate the work the performers put in it. I was on a different carnival cruise last November and I’m pretty certain they were the same shows. Cruise director was alright, not my favorite but he was friendly enough. Our port was Cozumel. We booked the elite champagne catamaran sail through carnival. Honestly this was easily the highlight of our trip. The group was small, 20 or so (there were other catamaran sails boarding boats nearby packing 60 people or more on one boat). We had a crew of 6 or 7 that were all so wonderful! They took us out to an area to snorkel first for a while then we got back on the boat and they took us for a nice sail while they served drinks (open bar) and a nice lunch. We stopped in another area for some free swim time where they had a few paddle boards you could try out, use the snorkel equipment again, or just simply float with a pool noodle. I’d recommend this excursion to any adult travelers!! Overall I probably wouldn’t book this cruise again, mostly because of the port on embarkation day and the age/size of the ship and it feeling so crowded. Great crew though and really enjoyed the excursion in Cozumel. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
I chose this cruise for the price, short duration of trip, and departure port. It was the most boring vacation i've ever had. First of the positives: food was ok, you really should go hungry on the ship. Lots of food options. 2) ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the price, short duration of trip, and departure port. It was the most boring vacation i've ever had. First of the positives: food was ok, you really should go hungry on the ship. Lots of food options. 2) Room was spacious and ship was clean. 3) Ship sailed on time and arrived on time at destinations. 4) Good excursion options. Negatives: 1) Very old ship. Stinky, stale furniture and decor. This ship is 15years old. Worn but kept clean. Absolutely nothing fancy here. 2) Zero entertainment for non-drinkers. You get to play bingo and some silly "name the xxxxx" type of games. Ship had two indoor theatres with no daytime running shows at all. The theatres are constantly used for sales pitches for various products. Very pathetic. This was like a walmart standard type of cruise. It was my familys first cruise and none of us liked it. Perhaps other ships have a lot more options and facilities. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was our first time on a Carnival cruise. (We have used other lines.) I did not ever feel where I was to be particularly clean. The food was pretty terrible in the dining room and the buffet. Cold and undercooked. There are food ... Read More
This was our first time on a Carnival cruise. (We have used other lines.) I did not ever feel where I was to be particularly clean. The food was pretty terrible in the dining room and the buffet. Cold and undercooked. There are food options that are pretty good, but you will have to stand in slow, long lines for those options. (Hamburgers, omelets, etc.) I will say the staff was very nice and always willing to answer a question or help, The cabin was so-so. As I said, not particularly clean feeling. Bed was made every morning and the cute towel art left, but didn't look like anything had been wiped down well in bathrooms. Stage shows were pretty sad. Entertainment elsewhere was very good. We went to 3 comedy shows and enjoyed all of them. We did not buy alcohol as we weren't going to pay those prices, so I can't speak to that. Truthfully, I don't think I would use Carnival again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
I chose this cruise because it was to be a Birthday celebration an was 1 week after the Superbowl. Well on the sail date Feb 9 2019 the weather was cold and windy but as a Platinum member we boarded promptly and was in our cabin around ... Read More
I chose this cruise because it was to be a Birthday celebration an was 1 week after the Superbowl. Well on the sail date Feb 9 2019 the weather was cold and windy but as a Platinum member we boarded promptly and was in our cabin around 12:30.As cold as it was outside we had to stand out in the cold for the Safety drill which took about 40 minutes.I don't know if they had a sailaway or not since I went to my cabin to warm up. Well our luggage didn't arrive till around 4:00 even tho it had a priority on the luggage tag and I mentioned to the Porter when I tipped him. after we got out in to International waters I walked around the ship and didn't see any Band playing anywhere and for the whole 5 day cruise there was not a band to be found, only single persons or a trio playing horns. I was really disappointed with the entertainment.I had a balcony cabin on 6 deck and it stayed wet most of the time so that was a waste of money since I only went out there a few times when at ports. The lines were never long for food on Lido deck and it was as good as in dining room and much quicker access.the Tv in cabin was small and movies were dark and hard to watch unless the room was dark,I love movies watched one on the big screen but not a good selection in my opinion. had fun in Cozumel and Merida Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
This was chosen as our family New Years Cruise for 2018. There were 14 of us- 3 under 5 years and the rest adults. After reading some not very flattering reviews of Carnival ships, we had extremely low expectations and were pleasantly ... Read More
This was chosen as our family New Years Cruise for 2018. There were 14 of us- 3 under 5 years and the rest adults. After reading some not very flattering reviews of Carnival ships, we had extremely low expectations and were pleasantly surprised! There were some weak spots but all in all the staff was extremely friendly and helpful and the food was okay to good most days. The cabin stewards could do a more thorough job of cleaning and replacing dirty towels and glasses. The night time entertainment was fun but not too fancy- mainly dancing and trivia. The shore excursions we chose were both lots of fun and very well executed. The two excursions we took were the Champagne Catamaran, snorkeling and diving adventure. and the Mayan Ruins, Lazy River, and Underground Cave Adventure. On the catamaran trip, the guides took us to a spot where there was lots of colorful stuff to observe at fairly shallow depths. After 45 minutes to an hour of that, you get back on the catamaran and its Happy Hour! Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
I took this cruise with over 20 members of a service organization that I belong to. I'm not a huge cruise fan - I would not have booked it for myself, but I knew that I would have a good time with my group. I've taken a couple of ... Read More
I took this cruise with over 20 members of a service organization that I belong to. I'm not a huge cruise fan - I would not have booked it for myself, but I knew that I would have a good time with my group. I've taken a couple of Carnival cruises before and one through NCL, and if I ever do another one, it will be with a truly premier line. But, this cruise did exceed my expectations. I've been to Galveston many times, so I did not do any sightseeing before or after the cruise. Embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly. No complaints with either process. The ship itself was pretty nice, as was the cabin. My cabin had a balcony with 2 chairs and a side table, so it was nice to be able to see the water. The curtain was heavy enough to block out light, so that was good for sleeping. The only thing that was a bit of a pain was the lack of plugs in the room. There was one outlet with 2 plugs on the vanity (one plug is 220, but it also works as a regular plug-fyi). There is another plug in the bathroom on the light fixture, but it only works while the light is on. The only real complaint I had was due to the location of my cabin - it was on the floor directly over the major entertainment areas, and a band played directly below us most nights. It was very loud! I had ear plugs, which helped, but I will know if I ever cruise again to check this out before I pick my room. The food was overall better than what I expected. I mainly ate in the dining room, because I'm not a buffet fan. Portions in the dining room are not large, but you get 3 courses. It was always plenty of food for me, but I'm not a big eater - you can always order more if you want it. I would recommend not ordering any of the fish fillet options except the salmon - they all looked dry and overcooked. Also, in addition to the early or late seating for the dining room, you can choose open seating option. Our group chose this, which allowed us to eat when the time was convenient for us. There are a few times when the buffets are the only option. The pizza was pretty good, and the burger place was delicious! I also liked the taco bar. I never ate at the other buffet lines. There are lots of activities to keep you busy. Carnival has something going all hours of the day - trivia games, various bands, casino (very smoky), shows, etc. The cruise director, TJ, was lots of fun. The activities for the day are printed and sent to your room, but I recommend using Carnival's HUB app. It lists all of the activities, dining options, shore excursions, and a ship map. For a $5 fee, you can also use the chat feature. It is a great tool to keep up with your party if you don't have international service on your cell phone. I had really good service throughout the cruise. Almost everyone was very friendly and helpful. I booked my excursions through a separate party (Shore Trips). I did not even know this was possible, but it is! If you use these, they are usually less crowded than through the cruise line. They were great! We did a dune buggy tour in Cozumel, and I highly recommend it! Overall, I was pleased with this cruise. Carnival is good for people who are flexible, don't mind crowds, like a lot of options for activities and it's good for kids. It was a good option for our large group, because it allowed people to pick and choose what they wanted to do throughout the day. If you want something quiet and top notch, I would choose a different cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Entertainment was poor like a high school musical. Food was awful and repeated at every buffet. Even dining room food was poor. I’m not picky but having to pay the up charge for good food like steak and lobster is the way Carnival screws ... Read More
Entertainment was poor like a high school musical. Food was awful and repeated at every buffet. Even dining room food was poor. I’m not picky but having to pay the up charge for good food like steak and lobster is the way Carnival screws us now. The comedy club was the best entertainment. The areas to chill on sea days were plentiful. We took advantage of the adult hot tubs and they were great. I think we will stick with Royal Caribbean next cruise. They at least offer more for the higher price. You really do get what you pay for. Carnival is cheap. Hubby did get food poisoning and we met other guests that did too. Excursion was nonrufundable even though he was sick. Don’t eat the BBQ!! The crescents at breakfast were superb! I know I’m all over the place with this review but it wants so many dang words I have to keep typing! Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
The value of the cruise is why my family choice the Valor it was in our budget. The activites everyday was great there was always something to do. The free food such a awesome luxury for all. However the staff as a whole except the head ... Read More
The value of the cruise is why my family choice the Valor it was in our budget. The activites everyday was great there was always something to do. The free food such a awesome luxury for all. However the staff as a whole except the head cabin housekeeper can't remember his name. The staff was very hateful snobby they acted like we owed them something when our money is just as green as theirs when asking for help and when having questions staff treated us like children and like we should have already known the answers. Effy jewelry staff was nice the first few days but when we went back in the last day of the cruise they seemed moody and irritated which could of meant maybe they were overworked and tired. The jewelry is gorgeous but way to expensive for the middle class working adult. Upon preparing to leave the cruise the staff was hateful one staff member even addressed my father with " Did you pay attention to the announcement u should have" that was uncalled for what a jerk. There is enough mean and hateful people in this world we don't need to go on vacation and experience the same issue. I will not recommend this cruise Carnival Valor to anyone. My family will chose a different Carnival Cruise Ship next time. However the overall cruise experience was very relaxing, entertaining, all different types of people to mingle with and meet new friends and create bonds that will last a lifetime. The cruise was clean decor was amazing everything was really great just those few negatives my family will always consider carnival but just a different one next time we will not give up on having a great time with carnival cruise Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
My father in law was taking mother in law for her birthday and asked us to join them, he would pay. Overall, it was a fun cruise with a few issues. First, the cruise director TJ was wonderful( a perfect fit). Joey in entertainment did a ... Read More
My father in law was taking mother in law for her birthday and asked us to join them, he would pay. Overall, it was a fun cruise with a few issues. First, the cruise director TJ was wonderful( a perfect fit). Joey in entertainment did a great job as well. Anamaria in guest services was a huge savior to me. Now for the issues, the carnival hub app. I did the two things it said airplane mode and connect to carnival valor wi fi. It worked in beginning and then begin not to. I saw 3 or 4 other people before getting Anamaria who told me it was my lookout/vpn preventing this. After i got that figured out, it worked. We didn't get a room service menu in our room and not even after calling for one. The show came on in the dining room right after half the table got served. So, half had to wait for food and so the two of us with food had to wait to see to eat. The room steward was nice but not like the one we had our first cruise. This cruise room steward didnt replace beach towel. No robes until asked or new cups for bathroom. We did see a child in the adult only spa section. The food was not that great but edible. We want to take another cruise but may look into other options next time. Cost/value needs to be better. It was not great this time. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
First of all the FTTF did us no good as far as all the waiting to board ship, debarking for excursions, etc. The food on the buffet line on Lido Deck was cold most of the time. We could not find ANY of our pictures, we found others that ... Read More
First of all the FTTF did us no good as far as all the waiting to board ship, debarking for excursions, etc. The food on the buffet line on Lido Deck was cold most of the time. We could not find ANY of our pictures, we found others that dined with us every night, but none of ours. This is the worst cruise I have had with Carnival, I've had far better on other Carnival Ships. The Show Time that the waiters do in the dining room was messed up. We sat in the upper section and did not get to see all the action because it was down in lower level and the only way to see it was hang over the railing and I wasn't about to do that; in the meantime while it was going on and we couldn't observe it they also turned our lights out so we couldn't see our food!! Not Fair - It's never been like this on the other Carnival Ships we have been on. The overall ship was good, our waiters in the Washington Dining Room were awesome, our room steward was great. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Overall our experience was a positive one. The ship shows signs of wear, but it was always clean and looked after thanks to the awesome staff. The food overall was poor, and was the biggest disappointment. Buffet on the Lido deck for all 3 ... Read More
Overall our experience was a positive one. The ship shows signs of wear, but it was always clean and looked after thanks to the awesome staff. The food overall was poor, and was the biggest disappointment. Buffet on the Lido deck for all 3 meals was below average. Even dinner in the dining room was very poor. Extremely bland and just not great tasting. Our was, and other members of the waitstaff, were great though and very polite. Guys Burgers is by far the best place to grab food on the ship. Our cabin was about what you’d expect and was always clean thanks to our steward. TJ, our cruise director, was awesome and very enthusiastic. The shows were entertaining and enjoyable. I especially enjoyed just relaxing on the lido deck and looking out at the ocean. Will definitely cruise again, but will look into booking with Royal Caribbean or something a little more upscale than Carnival. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This was the first cruise for our family of nine. Getting on the ship went very well and the customer service was excellent. We enjoyed our experience but were a little disappointed in the shows and food. Most of the desserts tasted as if ... Read More
This was the first cruise for our family of nine. Getting on the ship went very well and the customer service was excellent. We enjoyed our experience but were a little disappointed in the shows and food. Most of the desserts tasted as if they had been frozen. The food in the dining room was generally good. The service iwas always great. We were surprised that it didn’t really matter what you wore to the dining room in the evening. Although the literature says no ball caps, flip-flops, bathing suits, or cut off’s there were always plenty of those at every table. If you aren’t going to follow this policy why have it? We went to several of the topical seminars but all they really were was a place to sale foot inserts, or some other kind of product. With a few exceptions they rarely had the largest shows in the largest theater (Ivanhoe). You often had to be standing to watch comedy shows are the magic show because they booked the smaller room. The country show and the rock ‘n’ roll show were not the best. The special effects were good but the talent was a little week. Our room was super clean all week and again the service was exceptional wherever we were. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
This was a much awaited and deserved vacation the staff was awesome but the dinner menu in Lincoln was awful I eat only chicken and there were very few choices of chicken in appetizers and main course was also limited to beef and seafood ... Read More
This was a much awaited and deserved vacation the staff was awesome but the dinner menu in Lincoln was awful I eat only chicken and there were very few choices of chicken in appetizers and main course was also limited to beef and seafood for 4 days dinner I ordered vegetarian option and on the last day when I ordered vegetarian food I was served shrimp and chicken and when I complained about it the response I got was not very satisfying And after paying almost $3000 for the cruise there was no room service after 10 pm if you order u pay for it in the day time there are many options to eat but it is the night time when the kids come back from place at their youth camp that they want to order some food it is better to charge us a little extra but we must have 24 hour room service Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
This was a birthday cruise for my niece, I usually don't cruise when kids are out of school but I made an exception for her.Sailed the day after the Fourth got to terminal around 2 pm and had to carry on my two pieces of luggage ... Read More
This was a birthday cruise for my niece, I usually don't cruise when kids are out of school but I made an exception for her.Sailed the day after the Fourth got to terminal around 2 pm and had to carry on my two pieces of luggage because Porters had knocked off at 2 and it was around 2:30. so we rolled our luggage all the way to the Ship after they X-rayed them.Boarded and went straight to our rooms which was ok and air was working well.That night I wanted to enjoy a movie out on Lido deck so I arrived got a good seat ready to enjoy .....and then the hot tubs started to fill up with kids, jumping and splashing water so I could not enjoy the movie.Went to cabin and there was nothing on TV that interested me so went to casino lost 50.00, so looked for entertainment there was none to be found that I liked so went to sleep.Next day it was much of the same, prices of Liquor on the Ship for purchase have risen a lot even duty free the bargains are not their....cheaper than in the States but not like a few years back.My niece enjoyed herself this being her first cruise so alls well that ends well. Cozumel was wonderful got better deals there than on the ship lol The food was ok in both Dining Room and Lido deck just not enough live bands.The food was ok only ate in Dining room and Lido deck one of my party was a judge for the Hairy Chest contest.Didnt get to see any of the Comedy Shows Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
I cruised from June 30-July 5, 2018 with a party of 12 people aged 10-80. Let me start by saying that my expectations for this cruise were low, and it turned out to be better than I thought it would be. If this is the cruise you can afford ... Read More
I cruised from June 30-July 5, 2018 with a party of 12 people aged 10-80. Let me start by saying that my expectations for this cruise were low, and it turned out to be better than I thought it would be. If this is the cruise you can afford and it is convenient for you, by all means don’t hesitate to go. We had a large group, and everyone had a pretty good time. Now I will pick apart a few things in hopes that Carnival takes some of the feedback to heart. I hope what follows doesn’t seem too negative or discouraging, but here goes. EMBARKATION was fairly smooth. I did not realize that the porters take your luggage at the curb, then they check it inside. I turned away the first couple of helpful gentlemen because I thought we could take it inside ourselves. I was confused about the luggage allotment. Carnival states in several places that you are allowed ONE suitcase per person plus a carry on. I confirmed this in two separate phone calls before the cruise. When we got there, people had many more bags than that and were not questioned or stopped at all. So I guess it’s true – their rules are just suggestions. We arrived at the cruise terminal in Galveston a few minutes early, so they put us in the “early/late” line. From there until boarding the ship took about 20 minutes. The terminal is very sterile and warehouse-like, although staff were fairly friendly and helpful for the most part. Other cruises I’ve been on have had a party going on inside for those waiting to board with drinks, music, etc. This was not like that at all, but I guess that’s ok. There was a VERY angry guest who was shouting and throwing a fit over how many sodas he could bring on. The crew was very patient with him. Once on board, we were immediately in a crowd of people in the main lobby. There were no crew welcoming guests or directing traffic, so we just followed people onto elevators, most of which were reserved for the crew to use for luggage. Getting to our room took another 20 minutes or so. OUR BALCONY CABIN (7347) was great - spacious with more storage than we needed. The bed was very comfortable and the fridge worked well if we kept the cabinet door propped open. We saw our steward only once – the first night. He kept things clean, but did not replace glasses that we took out of the room or give us the little pen/notepad that others had - small details. The only things that could have used a better cleaning were door frames and the inside of drawers which had a lot of dust and hair in them from previous guests. The hair dryer is fixed inside a drawer, and while not very strong it was fine for my hair. Toiletries provided include bar soap, body wash and shampoo (no conditioner or lotion). The water is HOT!!! We had trouble showering without getting scalded, which was really kind of dangerous as it would suddenly get even hotter while you were in there. THE SHIP was fairly clean and well maintained, but it was really terrible to get around. There is a portion of deck 3 which you can’t go through, so you have to go up/down/around, then often the other rooms that you might walk through on neighboring decks were closed for one reason or another. We spent a ton of wasted time trying to get from one place to another, which was especially infuriating as I have a walking disability. Also, I was surprised that there is no observation lounge where one might relax and enjoy the view. While there are windows all along the ship, most of the seating is arranged facing inward, so you forgot you were even on a boat. The public bathrooms are difficult to find and designed in a maddening way to create bottlenecks. I wonder if the designers of this ship have ever actually gone on a cruise. I would probably not cruise on the Valor again because of the dysfunctional design and layout. The pools and hot tubs were tiny, crowded and…murky. We did not go near them. The Serenity deck was pleasant. The most comfortable lounge chairs were up there! FOOD in the main dining room was pretty good, but nothing special. Our servers were very helpful, but clearly needed more support. They were frantically busy, and then had to stop in the middle of everything and dance which you could tell just made the situation worse. We felt bad for them, and tried to express our gratitude. I unfortunately need gluten free food, and while there were options available, everyone I spoke to had a different idea of what I could safely eat. One day the creamed spinach was GF, and the next day I was told it wasn’t. I wish they would create a list which they could have given me to explain what I could eat in the MDR and in the buffet and other restaurants, but there seemed to be no such coordinated effort (as there is on some other ships). Scarlett’s Steakhouse was exceptional – food and service were amazing, and they gave us three bottles of complimentary wine! The Burger Joint was very popular and the food was good. Again, I had mixed messages regarding gluten. The buffet seemed average. The ice cream stations were nice in theory, however the dispensers were filthy. I have a pic of a moldy, disgusting dispenser that we were hesitant to use. Meh - we ate some anyway and didn't get sick. We were all very surprised that there was almost no food available after 9:00 pm – only pizza and moldy ice cream. We pre-ordered some bottled water which was a smart choice. We did not get any drink packages, and between my husband and I having wine with dinner and an occasional cocktail, we spent about $100 for the week. We did carry on some wine and sodas to have in our cabin. My husband says the breakfast burritos are the best option for the morning, and don’t miss the mac and cheese in the MDR!! ENTERTAINMENT was…ok. The fun crew didn’t seem to be having much fun, and we only went to the stage show on the first night because it was so painful to sit through. I think the cruise director gets paid by the syllable. The piano player in the Lindy Hop bar was very talented, but seemed pretty fed up with his job. He was wearing shorts and a t-shirt with a ball cap on, and clearly was out of patience for his drunk patrons. Sorry entertainers – I know you’re trying, and this is not an easy gig. The casino was super smoky (as usual), and there was a lack of blackjack tables that were not “fun blackjack” which we weren’t interested in. Video Poker machines seemed to be very “tight” and did not pay out much of anything. I did like the fact that you could charge to your account directly from the machine. P.S. – when we got money at the tables, there was a 3% fee added, but this did not seem to be the case at a machine. EXCURSIONS were booked through independent operators. This is a bit risky, and we did have a medical evacuation which changed our cruise route, but it all worked out. In Progresso we used Lawson’s tours and saw ruins, swam in a cenote, and ate at a local family’s house. That meal was delicious, but it was cooked in a shack in her back yard. In retrospect, it was probably a bit risky, but no one got sick and we loved the experience. In Cozumel, we went to Nachi Cocom beach club and it was wonderful. They limit the number of customers, so we practically had the place to ourselves. They provided a full meal, which was good, and there were unlimited drinks all day. The drinks were pretty weak, but that was probably a good thing. The beach was clean, and the water wonderful. I took a nice nap in a hammock near the water, and never wanted to leave. Get the ceviche and the flan! DEBARKATION was smooth. We had to be out of the room at 8:30 and hung out on the Lido deck until our group was called to leave at 10:00. Once in the terminal, we retrieved our luggage and one of the porters shepherded us through customs and we were out the door in short order. IN SUMMARY – it was a pleasant enough cruise, although the party vibe on this trip is not exactly what I like anymore. I am in my mid-50s, and while I appreciate a good hairy chest contest as much as the next person, I guess my party animal days are past so I would opt for a more relaxing, elegant atmosphere. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We selected cruise for the kids. we have two teenagers and this was their first cruise. We gave them a curfew to be back in the cabin for dinner and 12 midnight every night. Overall they both had fun. My husband and I relaxed for the ... Read More
We selected cruise for the kids. we have two teenagers and this was their first cruise. We gave them a curfew to be back in the cabin for dinner and 12 midnight every night. Overall they both had fun. My husband and I relaxed for the most part. No problems getting deck chairs or sitting in the adult only areas. There were two back to back issues with the pool on deck 9 however. The first was a child that pooped in the pool. Carnival cleared the pool to clean it quickly. I don't know why this child didn't have on a swim diaper. the second was a child threw up in the same pool! Needless to say, I did not get in the pool the entire trip! Our room was clean and the cabin steward was very nice and very friendly. If we sail again on the Valor I will NOT get off the ship at Progresso. First of all the gauntlet of merchants you have to walk through to get to the beach is crazy. The endless pulling at you to buy a trinket, massage, drink, cigar, pet an Iguania , t-shirt etc is crazy! ENOUGH. Once on the beach it does not stop. you can not enjoy the day because here comes the merchants wanting to braid hair, sell coconut milk, henna tattoos etc. I returned to the ship within 20 minutes. I stopped at the duty free shop to buy some Mexican Vanilla and I was followed through the store! Everytime I looked up, there stood a worker! I noticed they followed me and everyone that LOOKED like me too! I was insulted and angry. I logged a complaint with Carnival about this practice. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We just got back from a 4 day, 6/7 - 6/11. Embarkation was so easy and the staff was wonderful and cheerful. We were in outside cabin 1621 and 1623. My wife and I are in our mid-fifties with our grown children ages 28 & 30. ... Read More
We just got back from a 4 day, 6/7 - 6/11. Embarkation was so easy and the staff was wonderful and cheerful. We were in outside cabin 1621 and 1623. My wife and I are in our mid-fifties with our grown children ages 28 & 30. Greater by our Cabin Steward, Yuli, who was very pleasant and asked our preferences. We begged to have NO towel animals which went on deaf ears. But she did give us extra towels every day. We tried to keep the trash can out and even asked her but she kept putting it back hidden. Our first night we went to MDR, Lincoln dining room. Our head Waiter was Marius who always seemed like he was doing too much and couldn’t handle it all and didn’t rely on his helpers. However he gave great service and exceeded our expectations. Food was mediocre and barely warm at best. I can say that anything stood out, except for the chocolate melting cake, Mickey Mouse. The staff seemed very tired on the ship and most service matched the condition of the ship. The ship was not very clean, the public restrooms were on the verge of being disgusting and rust was seen everywhere. In Cozumel we went to Mr. Sanchos and had a wonderful time. Highly recommend reservations as they were turning people away without them. Lowlight was the Seaday Brunch. Under staffed and the waitstaff was horrific. And the food matched the service. Got fruit platter twice and neither time were they cold (who really likes warm cottage cheese). Eggs and most meat over cooked except for the bacon which was almost raw. We usually love Seaday brunch but this trip the Lido was probably better (did I say that?). Highlight was of course the Steakhouse. Our two waitresses had a major attitude and gave the staff table next us much more attention. However, the food made up for it. Not liking snails they made the escargot with shrimp and it was incredible. Don’t know which was better, the Cowboy, the lamb or filet. And thankfully they had the old menu so we ended up with the Chocolate Sampler...YUM!!!! My wife and I are Platinum and we made our way to the Lincoln dining room for debarktation with our children. Took 20 minutes to make it there from deck 1 as most passengers tried to get off before they were scheduled. Some almost unruly when they tried to clear the deck for customs inspection. The staff did their best to no avail. All in all it was a good time. This was our over 30th cruise on multiple lines and our children have over 15 and we all agreed that the ship needed a much needed cleaning and the staff needed a fun ship makeover. However, any cruise is a good cruise and we made the most of our time. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We went on a group cruise with friends. Our room was always clean and our cabin host was always helpful and friendly. The issues I had was that they boardered on harassment on the first day to push drinks on you. The closest ice machine ... Read More
We went on a group cruise with friends. Our room was always clean and our cabin host was always helpful and friendly. The issues I had was that they boardered on harassment on the first day to push drinks on you. The closest ice machine was out of service the whole time. But what should have been unacceptable was the elevator that went to the 12th floor where the kids camp was located was out of service the whole entire cruise. I am disabled and climbing a flight of stairs is both difficult and painful for me. Also disembarkment at the first port was horrendous. Basically the whole ship was told to go at the same time. Disembarkment at Galveston was similar to the chaos at out 1st port. If you do the dune buggy tour take snacks unless you want to pay an additional $20 per person to eat at the beach. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We took my 18 year old son and 10 of his senior classmates on The Carnival Valor May 10th 4 day cruise to Cozumel Mexico out of Galveston Texas for their Senior Trip. The Carnival Valor was the best choice of ships because 1) We ... Read More
We took my 18 year old son and 10 of his senior classmates on The Carnival Valor May 10th 4 day cruise to Cozumel Mexico out of Galveston Texas for their Senior Trip. The Carnival Valor was the best choice of ships because 1) We live in Texas and the port is 4 hours away 2)The trip was only 4 days and one Port 3)The cruise, for the most part is inexpensive I will say from an 18 year old point of view is that they had a blast. Some of the students said 10 out of 10. My son had a blast, but has cruised before and knew that this ship was not as nice as the one he has been on (RCI FOS) Being with his friends was priceless for him though. I personally did not like the layout of the ship. One reason being that traffic is directed through the casino. I hate the smoke smell, and I hate that our teens walk through the casino to get from one end of the ship to the next. You can get land locked mid-ship. When you ask someone how to get through to AFT, etc, they will tell you "go up to deck 5, then come down to deck 3, go down stairs, blah blah" WHAT? I think the bottom line is that you get to the floor that the casino is on to get to forward or aft. Another layout issue is the Adult Area. The Adult Only pool and the Serenity Deck are not together. To get to The Serenity Deck, be prepared to climb up steps. There is no elevator. Why does Carnival ask their older passengers to climb stairs? I don't go on vacation to spend time climbing stairs. I don't mind some, but when your vacation is spent climbing, then to me, that equals no fun. My husband has had a hip replacement. Before the surgery, there would have been no way for him to get up there. My knees are beginning to get a bit sore in general. Food was great. We picked a cruise because most of our group of Seniors are boys and they need to eat. I think they loved Guys Burgers. The Mongolian got a thumbs down. My husband loved the Cantina. The Lido food was ok, not bad. Plentiful and basically good. The dining room was open for Brunch every sea day morning and the food and service there is fantastic. The evening meal was also very good. Carnival does their dining room very well. Dani our waiter was an absolute ROCKSTAR to our Seniors. They LOVED him. He could do no wrong in their eyes. The Carnival Valor served its purpose for the short trip close to home with our teens. The Valor is a value party ship. I personally will not be picking this ship for any future cruises Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Carnival Valor Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 3.5 4.0
Enrichment 2.0 3.5
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 5.0 4.1
Rates 4.0 4.3

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