Sail Date: February 2019
I titled this review "It's Alright" because that's what we kept saying the whole cruise. Our expectations were low since we knew it was an older ship, and because of Carnivals reputation, but I think they weren't ... Read More
I titled this review "It's Alright" because that's what we kept saying the whole cruise. Our expectations were low since we knew it was an older ship, and because of Carnivals reputation, but I think they weren't quite low enough. I will say that the cabins were a pleasant surprise. We upgraded to an ocean view and it was pretty spacious compared to other cruise lines I've cruised on. The shower, although still small, was the largest shower I've ever had on a cruise. Our housekeeper was very nice, and grabbed us on our first day to ask when we'd like her to clean our rooms which worked out perfectly. I will say though, that even though they put a card in our room saying if we hung our towels they'd conserve and we could keep them, all of our towels were taken every day and replaced with new ones. Embarkation was smooth sailing (pun intended). We were on the ship in about 10 minutes, and our bags showed up at our room less then 2 hours later which was great. The food on board was terrible. Their only saving grace was Guy's Burger Bar and the Blue Iguana which I had one of the best burrito's I've ever had in my life. We, as well as MANY other people got lost trying to find the Inspiration Dining Room our first night and after going up and across the whole ship multiple times we finally made it, only to be met with flavorless food. I ordered the Spring Rolls for an appetizer which literally tasted like nothing, and the steak and potatoes for my main. The steak wasn't seasoned at all, the potato wasn't even cut open, just a whole potato plopped on a plate which when opened was dry, and two Broccoli florets which, you guessed it, were not seasoned. Needless to say that was the one and only time we dined there. The buffet was better, but not by much so most nights we either got burgers or Pizza from Pizza Pirate. I might even go out and say the desserts were worse then the main meals. While we did find a few very nice crew members, Luz by the pool and in the Micado Lounge, and Marco, as well as Brad who was part of the Fun Squad, we found that the crew wasn't that friendly or helpful, and sometimes it even seemed as if we were bothering bartenders when ordering a drink. I will say though, that besides the one bartender that worked in the Romeo and Juliette Lounge, all of them made fantastic drinks! Raynold in the atrium bar made insanely good Espresso Martini's and the Guava Margarita at the Tequila Bar by the pool was fantastic. We really just wanted to go to the beach so we did a couple of beach transfer excursions. In Freeport we did the Beach Getaway with drinks included. We were met with a beach filled with just regular plastic chairs (not beach/lounge chairs) and some pretty subpar drinks. We did get a beautiful day though and the music was almost as entertaining as watching all of the drunk people dancing. In Nassau we did the Biltmore Island Beach Getaway. It was a beautiful island and they had normal beach chairs and umbrella's set up for you. The food/drinks were pricey but it was a very relaxing day. We also had access to a pool, and we got to watch the sting ray and dolphin experience if we wanted to. I'd say this was the better of the two excursions we did, and definitely worth the money. Entertainment on the ship was minimal. We really enjoyed the performers at the Diva's/80's Night shows. They were incredible! We went to one comedy show which was ok but nothing spectacular. But other then that it was just a lot of trivia and "beauty experiences" that were just really set up there to get you to purchase a spa day or items sold on board. We went to Karaoke every night and that was really fun. One night we went to the Jekyll and Hyde Nightclub. It was ok but nothing fantastic. The pool was cold every day, and the Jacuzzi's near the pool were filled with kids and because of that they weren't allowed to have the Jacuzzi temperature set to what you'd expect, so it was just luke warm water. The Jacuzzi's in the Serenity area were nice and hot, but usually packed with people because most days only one of them were open. We did have a lot of fun on the slides, which were probably meant just for kids but we're kids at heart! The elevators were SLOW. We were lucky enough to not have anyone in our party that needed to use them so we took the stairs most of the time to save us waiting 10 minutes for an elevator to come. I was also disappointed in that there was nowhere to just grab a snack. Sometimes you just need a bag of chips or a piece of fruit and every other cruise I've been on there's been random places to just grab something real fast but not on this one. All of the food is in one spot and besides the fro-yo machine they didn't have anything that I'd consider just a small snack. We ordered breakfast through room service one morning and half of our order didn't come, and the other half was wrong, so I don't recommend that. Breakfast at the buffet was pretty decent so I would for sure make the trek up to deck 10 for that. Our last day at sea was VERY rocky. I know that Carnival can't control the weather but the captain did say that we'd be back to normal by the evening and we definately were not, nor were there any updates on when we would be. People were throwing up everywhere and it was very hard to walk down the stairs or even just walk around without the threat of falling down. We did find after a while that the middle of the ship, especially outside, was better then anywhere else on the ship, we just wish someone told us that sooner. We did get the drink package, and it was nice to not have to worry about how much we were spending. I liked that it included the coffee bar, milkshakes, soda and bottles of water. There was a 15 drink maximum and while we never hit that mark we met some people who had and they were for sure cut off, however they could still purchase more drinks if they wanted to. For me the package probably cost about what I would of spent if I didn't have it, so it was nice to just not have that worry of what my bill would be come the end of the cruise. I splurged and scheduled a massage that was good but not worth the price. Also, what they don't tell you is they automatically charge you an 18% gratiuity. While I was prepared to tip anyway, I'm sure that could catch some people off guard, like the woman in front of me in line who had already given her massage therapist a $20 cash tip and then was met with another $20 charge on her sail and sign card. I did have to fight for it, but I managed to get them to reimburse my friend who missed her massage since she was throwing up all day from the rocky seas. It took some convincing but I'm glad that they came to their senses and refunded her. Disembarkment was a mess. We had to be out of our rooms at 8:30 and we chose to take our luggage with us. It took us almost 2 hours in all of the lines we had to stand in to get off the ship, then the line to get through customs. Communication on this ship was not good at all. We had to go to guest services multiple times to ask questions that probably should of been communicated to us. All in all the cruise itself was "Just Alright". It was nice to be away and in nice weather and not having to go to work, but I would never cruise with Carnival again. Even though we got a pretty good deal on the cruise, and our expectations were low, it still was kind of a disappointment. It's what you make of it though, and we all still had a great time with each other. Next time, we'll spend a little extra money and go with another cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
Embarkation and disembarkation was very easy..I would recommend FTTF.. Cabin and luggage were ready when you board.. The ship was beautifully maintained.The cabin was very cozy,comfy bed.Our steward Gusti kept the room clean.Cam the cruise ... Read More
Embarkation and disembarkation was very easy..I would recommend FTTF.. Cabin and luggage were ready when you board.. The ship was beautifully maintained.The cabin was very cozy,comfy bed.Our steward Gusti kept the room clean.Cam the cruise director was awesome, he was very entertaining and energetic..Enjoyed the game shows,fun squad had lots of energy as well..There was a variety of places to eat..So many activities to choose from.. Trivia,karaoke,comedy shows.etc.. Ports were easy on and off.Freeport is mostly industrial so I'd recommend doing an excursion. We did The Grand Bahama tour,the bus driver Warren G and guide Keno made the tour fun, gave us history about the island went to Taino Beach as part of the tour and it was very beautiful,Lucaya market was great,enjoyed the conch fritters.. We didn't do any excursions in Nassau, We walked the straw market,queens staircase and fort fin castle.. the locals were very friendly.. Beautiful blue water,great food.. I would definitely do this cruise again and highly recommend as well.. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
The Elation has been kept up beautifully and she doesn't show her age. New carpeting, paint, and loving care has done wonders to keep her in her original 'glory days' condition. I booked last minute and was able to snag the ... Read More
The Elation has been kept up beautifully and she doesn't show her age. New carpeting, paint, and loving care has done wonders to keep her in her original 'glory days' condition. I booked last minute and was able to snag the last available cabin, which happened to be an ocean view on the Riviera Deck, aft, port side, just above the water level; it was fresh, roomy, plenty of storage, and even a fridge! Nice size shower with good water pressure and really hot water! The food offered at the Lido buffet was always a treat, with a nice variety, and beautiful desserts; no waiting in line during the 'off' hours. Other dining options included at no extra charge are the main dining room for sit-down-service, a burger place,a pizza place, burrito bar, and an in room service menu. There is steak-and-lobster offered in the dining room for a minimal cost, and sushi is available for purchase on the 9th deck. There is always something going on around the ship, and it's always fun to try something new. The shows in the main theater were top notch talent, accompanied by fun music, and stunning special effects. The casino is always a fun option, and cocktails are avail for purchase just about everywhere. (I attended some of the raffles, which offer free mimosas!) The service was great everywhere, the entire crew was always friendly, but not intrusive. Half moon Cay is indeed a paradise for those craving beach activities, as easy or as strenuous as desired. Nassau is the place to buy souvenirs, and $4.00 buys a taxi ride to the beautiful Paradise Island where the Atlantis Resort has made certain areas available to the public at no charge, and other areas are available for a fee. Their casino is open 24 hours, and there is no charge to the general public to stroll through, or try your luck! Having cruised over 40 times and on many different lines and ships, I find Elation to be one of my favorite for a short cruise. There are bigger ships, and newer ships, but Elation never ceases to amaze me. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
My 5-Night cruise aboard Carnival's Elation from Jacksonville, FL to the Bahamas accomplished my primary goal: relaxation. This was my first Carnival cruise, my first cruise out of Jacksonville, FL, and my first Solo cruise! I was ... Read More
My 5-Night cruise aboard Carnival's Elation from Jacksonville, FL to the Bahamas accomplished my primary goal: relaxation. This was my first Carnival cruise, my first cruise out of Jacksonville, FL, and my first Solo cruise! I was impressed with Carnival and would go on them again. The Jaxport was easy to get to and embarkation/debarkation easy. And Solo-cruising...what's not to like? I got to do what I want, when I want! All I want to do on cruises is find a lounge chair near a pool and hot tub, and rotate reading to swimming, back to reading, then to Hot tub, repeat. Most days on this cruise, you could find me up on deck reading, but no pool/hot tub time; they kept draining the pool in the day and refilling it that night and the heaters on for the hot tubs didn't work (and no staff could explain why). It was a little cooler than my usual January cruises, but the sun was warm! BUT the Elation is the PERFECT size ship! It's older, but refurbished, with everything within an easy walk! Lots of nightclubs and bars, great nightly entertainment in the theater, two comedians, deck parties, informal food stations (the BEST hamburgers were from Guy Fiero's!!!) and good food (not great like RCL, but pretty good). My Inside Cabin was the biggest I've had in years; newer, larger ships keep reducing the cabin sizes. Very comfortable and great service by attendant, Joey. I didn't pick its location, my cabin was "to be assigned" and it was perfect location, mid-ship. First day onboard, I treated myself to a "Hot Stone Massage" by Tavia in the Spa, whose magical hands released so much tension and stress from my body! Even the bottoms of my feet felt better after her massage with the hot stones! It was so good, I treated myself to a second treatment on our last full day by Tavia again to release any further remaining tension before I returned to work on Monday! All in all, a great cruise and I would go "solo" again! Nothing more freeing than being able to do whatever I want, whenever I want! LOL! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
Carnival Elation Sailing out of Jacksonville. We were 3 couples with suites V 2,4,6 all together. We all had junior suites and are members of their VIFP club (frequent cruisers) which allows priority boarding. The embarkation process ... Read More
Carnival Elation Sailing out of Jacksonville. We were 3 couples with suites V 2,4,6 all together. We all had junior suites and are members of their VIFP club (frequent cruisers) which allows priority boarding. The embarkation process was a breeze. We were allowed access to our cabins to drop our stuff. They were not quite ready. The jr suite was quite nice. King bed, sofa/twin bed, small table and a chair. Nice size bathroom with shower. Plenty of storage. We selected anytime dinning and that is were the trouble started. When we showed up at 6:30 and were given a beeper and told it would be 20 to 30 minutes. Got seated at 7 and waited 1 hour for our main course. The meal was mediocre. We went to the hostess and requested the other dining room with a set 6:00 seating. She took our information and said they would let us know the next day. They were able to accommodate the 6 o'clock seating. The rest of our dining experience was much better. Next, we retired to our suite to turn in for the night and discover that the gym is above our suites. Tread mills directly above with pounding runners like you would not believe. Going on until 11:30. The gym is supposed to close at 10. The next morning it started at 6AM. Called guest services and they would “look into it”. The next two days was the same experience with calls to guest services. On the 3rd day they said they had sent an email to the gym manager but didn't hear back. They could not move us as they had no available comparable suites. With one day left they offered us an on-board credit which we could only use at the gift shop. Not acceptable. Finally, they offered a credit to our sign & sail card. We have never been on a cruise where there were so many extra charges for so many “Premium” room service and dinner menu items. No one told us when we booked that the Bubbles and Liquor cards would not work at your private island Half Moon Cay. Entertainment was mediocre. At any one time 1 or two of the elevators would be out of order. One of the atrium elevators was out of order for the whole trip. The other one was sporadically available. Public rest rooms around the ship were out of order at times. The casino was unbearable. We went in the first night and were overcome with smoke. Everyone was smoking all over the place. Very poor ventilation. We reeked of smoke after only about 10 minutes in the place. Never went back. Even walking down the promenade next to the casino was awful. The service folks were exceptional. Room steward Nomer and his team could not have been more attentive. The wait staff in the set time dining room were excellent. Kanda, Wayan and rest of the team on table 332 were exceptional! Not so much in the open seating dining room. Plenty of food options for everyone. Guy’s Burger hut was great! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
This was my wife and I first cruise trip together. Also this was our honeymoon trip. Although we had a small problem with knowing what to bring at the embarkation, we were excited. Everything was amazing. The food was excellent! My wife ... Read More
This was my wife and I first cruise trip together. Also this was our honeymoon trip. Although we had a small problem with knowing what to bring at the embarkation, we were excited. Everything was amazing. The food was excellent! My wife and I where shocked about how great the food tasted with no sugar. This really gave us a head start to our new diet. We where amazed at the amount of hospitality that was shown. From the first moment of aboarding the ship to the final day of a wonderful trip. The cabin was large for me and my wife! The entertainment was perfect for all ages! The total service across the board was amazing! The port was close to home, easy transition during embarkation and disembarkation! The ports was awesome and shore excursions were wonderful! Thanks Cam, Captain, Chef, and Service Team for making our honeymoon trip fun and romantic. My wife and I cannot wait until our next trip. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise because it was a good deal for our family of five and were able to get a connecting room for our kids to be beside of us. This was my wife and I's third cruise and our children's first and our first on ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was a good deal for our family of five and were able to get a connecting room for our kids to be beside of us. This was my wife and I's third cruise and our children's first and our first on Carnival. The ship was ok, but not great. One turn off when we got on the ship was the fact that the life boats are located at deck 11 where you would normally want to have a full view of the ocean while seated on deck chairs. We were also kind of disappointed with the atrium stage having a bar right in front of it so it kind of took away from the overall look. The entertainment we saw for the shows was terrible. First of all, the main show lounge was very small and if you were trying to get there after a late dining time you were out of luck in getting a seat, but when we heard the singers, we didn't need a seat after all. The singers were awful and the show itself was terrible. I think this ship got the rejects from either Carnival's bigger ships or the rejects from Royal. The cruise director wasn't very good either so I think that may have contributed to the poor entertainment. We never went to another show after we left the first night. Getting on the ship in Jacksonville, FL was great, but getting off was another story. It was very confusing to get info about the tenders to go to Half Moon Cay. You had to get tickets and wait for your number to be called, but did not give an approximate time of when you would be called. Getting off at Jax was even more confusing. Not even the cruise director was clear on the instructions. "Go wait here and then wait for your deck to be called, then go here and go up to go down". Most of the crew didn't even know what to do. If you ever take this ship, it would be easier to just let them take your luggage out for you and wait for your tag number to be called. Food was ok, but nothing to really brag about and long lines for breakfast buffet. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
We took this cruise to end a very bad year following the death of my father. We spent the extra money to place our grown girls in their own room. As SOON as we pulled into Jax. we got an email stating that the ports were closed and not to ... Read More
We took this cruise to end a very bad year following the death of my father. We spent the extra money to place our grown girls in their own room. As SOON as we pulled into Jax. we got an email stating that the ports were closed and not to go to the port. The ship should have docked 3 hours earlier and they were just sending this. A large group of families gathered at the pilot down the road to wait until almost 4 hours were we allowed to head to the port. At this time, EVERYONE was headed to the port no matter their embarkation time which turned into total chaos. Once upon board, no updates on departure and what I think was not a legal muster call by shoving everyone into the lounge and telling people how to put on a life jacket. Late dinner was suppose to be at 8:15 (we had 5 out of 6 pieces of luggage and no hanging bag) at 8:30 after many request to locate SPECIAL Dresses for the new years was it located. Headed to the dining hall and was there told dinner was pushed to 9:15. Spent the next FOUR Days with guest services and a card issue. They claimed it was blocked EVEN THOUGH THEIR ATM would take it and charge you $8 a pop. Room cleaning was to a minimum (only expect beds to be made and towels to be replaced - constantly left glasses). Bar tenders are scarce and WAY Too few for a holiday cruise. Bar tenders in Casino only appeared to service the 20% closest to the bar, so winning a 1k casino points for free drinks is pointless. It's also VERY heavy with smoke. I coughed the whole time I was in there. A bar tender in the Romeo and Juliet lounge argued with me that Jack Daniels is a Bourbon after I made him remake a drink. The Social Media Access is a joke and not worth the expense. One daughter NEVER got FB or Snapchat to work. Could only message. Last night at dinner was declined again for card issues. On Saturday disembarking, I was pulled out of line TWICE for card issue. I went to ATM, pulled out $600 paid my tab in full. Was pulled out of line AGAIN with receipt in hand trying to get off and had whole family with luggage in tow. Got home AFTER Paying bill and have another charge of $69.63 off card they said wouldn't work. Called Carnival to discuss and they were of NO help. If we do another cruise, I can't say it will be with Carnival or this ship. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
In general I would tend to give Carnival the benefit of the doubt, as it is nothing more or less than it aspires to be — a no-frills, inexpensive means of getting together with friends or family members while soaking in some sun. But ... Read More
In general I would tend to give Carnival the benefit of the doubt, as it is nothing more or less than it aspires to be — a no-frills, inexpensive means of getting together with friends or family members while soaking in some sun. But this trip was just out of sync from the get go. It started with the luggage arriving nearly five hours after we boarded (we had priority boarding), and continued with the safety instructions, where the guy giving the presentation was routinely interrupted by the cruise director and the captain in a wholly uncoordinated manner (I know they’re not in the same room, but don’t they have any idea the other ones are talking?), and continued right until the end, when we rolled into port six hours late and missed our flights. The captain repeatedly mentioned that we can’t control Mother Nature (True Dat!), but with 36 hours of sea time to get back from an island just off the coast it seems like a little planning may have helped, and I think what was most irksome was the fact that they couldn’t even be bothered to keep us up to date, or to some extent manage expectations. Hence on the departure morning, after being kept awake all night by a *loud* fog horn that blasted every four or five minutes, the cruise director couldn’t even be bothered to tell us that we shouldn’t, as instructed, appear in the departure bay at 7 a.m., and that things would in fact be delayed by several hours. So we checked out of our rooms and sat in the departure area for several hours before hearing said announcement, at which point the persons waiting were pretty salty, and certainly not in a mood to be hectored by Cam the cruise director about being patient. Overall, just a real mess of an operation Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
Took my kids and grandkids on first cruise for Christmas. Ship needs to be retired! Engine(s) or motor went out more than once. Crew was clearly overworked, tired and underpaid. Food and food choices not as good. Kids waterpark operational ... Read More
Took my kids and grandkids on first cruise for Christmas. Ship needs to be retired! Engine(s) or motor went out more than once. Crew was clearly overworked, tired and underpaid. Food and food choices not as good. Kids waterpark operational last day only. Smell of sewage in hallway. Crew not ready for things like safety meeting. Nickled and dimed to death. Wifi is horrible even when you get best package that cost arm and leg. This ship was unable to handle the extreme rough seas. Stabilizers and engines went out as we approached Princess Cays and again on the way back to Jacksonville. Crew barely understood English. The FREE beach in Freeport cost us almost 200.00 when we believed it was a free shuttle...it was a taxi plus 5.75 each to get on the beach! Princess Cays was worthwhile but the only shore experience my family was able to enjoy. No more Carnival for us! Read Less
Carnival Elation Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.0
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 5.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.5 3.9
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 5.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.5 4.0
Rates N/A 4.4

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