180 Carnival Sunshine Cruise Reviews

Let me start by being fair and let you know we have only been on two other cruises. We recently went to Alaska on Holland America and 15 years ago on a carnival to Mexico. I chose carnival this time because they were the only ship going ... Read More
Let me start by being fair and let you know we have only been on two other cruises. We recently went to Alaska on Holland America and 15 years ago on a carnival to Mexico. I chose carnival this time because they were the only ship going out of Charleston. It was a family Birthday trip with my husband and our 20 yr old daughter. I truly felt that the ship was completely understaffed. I realize that there are cruises going out back to back, however the ship just seemed dirty. I used wipes to wipe down our sink and toilet because it seemed to have only been sprayed down, it was not clean. There are people cleaning all the time but they just don’t seem to be able to keep up with the flow of people. Yes it’s a party ship ( really not our thing, because it never stops). The food was mediocre at best. Back to staffing issues there is a long line for everything. Spent an hour and a half trying to get a soda the first morning. Starting on deck 2 at the coffee shop ending on 9 (by then the Havana bar was open ) every bar stop in between and they were either closed or didn’t have soda. We really enjoyed the movies on deck probably the best thing about our trip. Some other cruisers I spoke with said they cruise with carnival all the time and this one was the worst they had been on, that if we went out of another port we would have a totally different experience. I really do want to be fair saying that others said carnival was not usually like this cruise was. I personally wouldn’t want to cruise carnival again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Charleston was the nearest port so Carnival Sunshine was the only choice. I was on the 11th deck, Stateroom 11032. This cabin was fully exposed to outside temperature on 2 sides and partially on the third. There was no heat in the cabin ... Read More
Charleston was the nearest port so Carnival Sunshine was the only choice. I was on the 11th deck, Stateroom 11032. This cabin was fully exposed to outside temperature on 2 sides and partially on the third. There was no heat in the cabin and I had to get Guest Services to have an A/C Mechanic work on the system, but there as no improvement. To try to get warm, I went to bed fully clothed with a jacket on, all the bed cover, and was still cold. The room steward got an extra blanket which helped but it remained cold the entire cruise. The steward stated once there were no heating elements in the system. The electrical outlet under the counter mirror had pulled out of the wall and took two days to get it repaired. In the meantime, the cabin safe lost its memory (may have been associated with the other electrical problem) and I had to get a Carnival officer to open the safe and allow the code to be reset. The shower was designed for handicapped with steel bars for support. However, water flowed into a steel covered trough (supposedly) but the shower curtain was on the other side of the trough so all water hitting the shower curtain went into the bathroom and as the ship pitched and tossed the water covered the bathroom deck. There was never enough towels to sop up the water. It waas especially bad at night with bare feet to go to the bathroom on a freezing wet deck. Although there was a balcony, there was no time out of the 5 days I could sit on it due to the weather although I did stand there and take pictures twice. Also, due to the weather the ship had to go to Freeport rather than Half Moon Cay due to the extreme weather. Only two elevators went to the 11th deck and several times one of these was out of order. Also, there were only two decks in which I could walk all the way aft without having to change decks multiple times. I had the "eat anytime" rather than one of the two primary times and be assigned a single table which I have enjoyed previous cruises. Since I had to schedule a reservation to eat in the Sunrise Restaurant, I was invariably placed close to the serving staff's pots and pans, kitchens, and primary activity areas used to serve others. In other words, the least desirable tables in the restaurant. And, the pathway to every table I was assigned to was always difficult to get to since the entire ship has packed everything as close together as possible to maximize their profit while making the entire ship congested for customers. Although I have cruised with Carnival at least 4 times since 1980, their records are missing prior to about 2010 so I lost the advantage of previous cruises. I lost 5 pounds on the cruise (180 to 175) due to all the walking necessary making it more convenient for me to have only two meals/day most of the days. (By the way, salmon prepared in some form was on the menu each of the five days. Must have been a good buy!) I will not use Carnival again and stated so in the requested review they e-mailed me. I will mention two very positive employees - Isabel from Peru - a Head Waitress in SunRise, and Gosego in Guest Services - both are outstanding. I also compliment Carnival and the Port personnel for their aid in providing handicapped parking and wheelchair service to get handicapped customers on and off the ship. Also, the Thermal Units were available for occupants of staterooms in my area which were great - except when someone was in the area with a very bad cough!) Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
This is was our second time aboard the Sunshine and honestly our first trip wasn’t that great. We sailed on the Sunshine when it was in Florida (Orlando maybe?) and was hesitant to sail on it again but simply selected this cruise because ... Read More
This is was our second time aboard the Sunshine and honestly our first trip wasn’t that great. We sailed on the Sunshine when it was in Florida (Orlando maybe?) and was hesitant to sail on it again but simply selected this cruise because of its convenience out of Charleston. We had sailed out of Charleston before aboard the Ecstasy and had a much more enjoyable trip. Fist off this ship is nasty. Everything about it looks dirty and old and not well kept. Our stateroom bathroom smelt of urine horribly and the balcony made you feel dirty just stepping out on it. We decided to enroll our children in camp ocean and our children hated it. They were not entertained at all and did not want to go back. On the final day I asked them if they wanted to try it one more time. They went for little over an hour before I got a call about youngest one would not stop crying and wanted to leave. I go in there and they basically put the kids in a room with a few basic toys but were not interacting with them at all. I found this odd because I have talked to other parents that had used camp ocean on other ships and their kids loved it. Then there was the food. The dinning room and buffet were absolutely horrible. If it had not been for the burger joint, burrito bar and sandwich station I don’t know what we would have done. There was very little selection on the buffet and generally nothing for small children to eat (tell me what child is going to eat fish with clams that taste fishy). We ended up eating the main dining room every night because at least they had a kid’s menu even though the rest of the adult menu wasn’t that great. I have been on many cruise ships and the Sunshine is at the bottom of the list for food. I also enjoy craft beer and now that carnival started pretty much only selling their brand brew, they don’t have that great of a selection anymore. I love IPA beer, but the carnival Parched Pig IPA lacks a lot to be desired. On the upside the terminal in Charleston made the boarding and embarkation very smooth and easy. Now if they would just switch ships again they would be golden. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
I have wanted to go on a cruise for years, so my husband booked one as a surprise for Christmas. We chose Carnival Sunshine simply because we live in North Carolina and Charleston is the closet port (4 hour drive). Let me start out ... Read More
I have wanted to go on a cruise for years, so my husband booked one as a surprise for Christmas. We chose Carnival Sunshine simply because we live in North Carolina and Charleston is the closet port (4 hour drive). Let me start out with the pros: Everyone on board, crew members and other vacationers, were SO friendly. We had the pleasure of meeting the cruise director and the captain and both were very personable. We loved our cabin steward, Aris. The atmosphere on board was really positive and that goes a long way. For food, we really enjoyed Guy's Burgers, the deli shop, pizza, and the salsa bar. All were delicious. All drinks we ordered were also great. Our favorite part of the trip was Half Moon Cay. We wish more days could have been like that. The process of getting there and back was fairly simple with a shorter line than most other activities throughout the week, the beach was truly perfect, we loved renting an affordable clam shell for sun protection, and there were walking paths, gift shops, a fun pirate ship water playground, and a regular playground. My husband and I both agree this was the best day of the ship and we truly felt like our son had fun that day. Our cabin was small, as expected, but the bed and pillows were super comfortable. Also, we did enjoy the fitness room and being able to workout while on board. I wish I could have used the spa but did not end up booking anything. It smelled wonderful and was really pretty! The spa staff were super nice, too. Now for the cons: The muster drill took over an hour, which was really challenging with a tired toddler. I have talked to so many people who cruise regularly and many from our area take Carnival Sunshine because of the convenience. I was under the impression that the pool and sports complex would be bigger and better than it was. However, the main pool was the size of a regular backyard pool and the two whirlpools were very small. The sports complex was also very small. My son is young and we got up early every morning trying to get him to the sports complex so he could shoot some basketball. Finally on the very last day he got to shoot some baskets because there were only a few kids on the court. It was so over crowded the whole time. This isn't Carnival's fault, but the wind on the sports complex was frightening the whole time we were at sea. It just made it one less place for us to play. Because everything was so crowded and it was so windy, my toddler spent most days climbing up and down the stairs on the inside and outside of the ship. Luckily I brought him some new trucks to play with, coloring books and crayons, and shows on my iPad. Those kept him entertained when there was truly nothing for him to do on board. This is a just a personal preference, but we did not enroll our child in Camp Ocean. I am not comfortable leaving him with people I've never met. When it comes to traveling, I am a big planner. I research all the best options, what to do while we are there, how to get around, I watch YouTube videos for cruise tips, etc. I also work in public health and even read the ship's sanitation reports beforehand. I want to know it all! Even after all the planning and preparing, I felt completely lost on board and I know others felt the same way because we would get on the elevator and all be lost on where we were going. Additionally, I have a major problem with the secondhand smoke on this ship. The secondhand smoke from the casino is extremely offensive and can be smelled on every floor because SMOKE TRAVELS and sticks to every single service. I find it completely unreasonable that the outside smoking area is in the same area as Camp Ocean for children. Anyone wanting to visit that area has to take their children through a cloud of smoke, and secondhand smoke is a health hazard especially for children and anyone with asthma or other lung conditions. We ate the buffet most evenings because of the convenience with a toddler. The food was alright but not as good as I had expected with how everyone raves about cruise food. Room service was very disappointing. I ordered my son a peanut butter and jelly sandwich one afternoon, which arrived with stale bread and stale potato chips. The entertainment (especially the "morning show") was disappointing, though Mikey was a great cruise director. We were really looking forward to doing Build-A-Bear but it was not enjoyable because it was so chaotic. The music was way too loud, you had to shout to communicate with the crew members doing the event. When we stopped in Nassau, we were looking forward to a nice relaxing beach day. We got off the ship early to spend as much time in Nassau as we could. It was so horrible we were only off the ship for 2 hours. The taxi rides are terrifying and the beach was really sketchy. We were definitely mislead for which beach to attend. My husband and I have enjoyed traveling together for years and a cruise was really something we had looked forward to. Unfortunately, I found myself feeling completely trapped this entire trip. I was counting down the days until we could get off the ship and it just feels like a waste of money and time off from work. We will never take another Carnival cruise. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Check in with the staff in Charleston was great, but getting TO THE COUNTER; not so much. 4 different directions was given to the Ubër driver before getting us to the right place, totally ignoring the signs saying CRUISE CHECK IN inside ... Read More
Check in with the staff in Charleston was great, but getting TO THE COUNTER; not so much. 4 different directions was given to the Ubër driver before getting us to the right place, totally ignoring the signs saying CRUISE CHECK IN inside the parking area. You drop your bags off in a shed. Then drive across the parking lot. Get out, check in, and board a bus that drives you right back across the same parking lot to the ship. We boarded and the rooms were already waiting for us, around 1pm. Unfortunately the room was not made up the way we had requested it online, so that had to be changed l. The service was rather hit or miss on board. An example would be watching the waitstaff checking on guests for drink orders, yet when they discovered you had a package,,, you'd never see them again. We were seated orignally at a table in the dining room in an alcove. The wall had a 10 inch gash where the chair had backed up against it where it was angled into the corner. It was a large table, seating 12 people, and very claustrophobic. I went to the maitre d station to move, and while waiting, one waiter said, "oh, if you don't like the room, the lido is open?" I did report this to the assistant Maitre d when I got his attention. Unbelievable. We got a great waiter and better table after that first night. On the 3rd night, brown sewer water came up from the drain and flooded the bathroom floor in our room. We put down towels from having it get into the room. The stench was horrible. The front desk found us another room right around the corner that was open. They apologized and that was it. While boarding the tender to Princess Cays, the guy directing traffic tried to send me downstairs in the enclosed area on the tender. I told him I get sick easy and need to be in the air. He said downstairs. I started back toward the exit and he asked where I was going? I told him I will wait for the next tender and I'm getting off. He made a face, and said "go sit down", pointing to a bench on the upper deck. One lady said that she was gonna report him if I didn't do so. The ship itself is in fair condition. Don't look too closely or you'll start to notice the rusting doors, and how many 'out of service' signs you'll see. The Serenity Decks are great. Honestly, I'm surprised they've not started charging for them? I will note the food was okay. There are different varieties around for choices. One thing I did notice was the temperature of the buffet. Warm to cool was the normal for the items. If you want hot AND fresh, go to the back for the Asian bowls or Italian pasta bar. Unfortunately even the sandwich place has premade items now. There's no more panini press, just the toaster ovens like Subway uses. I can honestly say that I was expecting a better experience from the Sunshine and her crew. Sadly that didn't happen. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We chose this cruise because it was our anniversary and it was going to Bermuda. We have been to Bermuda twice before and loved it. We had friends going with us who had never been there. We were supposed to go to Princess Cay first then ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was our anniversary and it was going to Bermuda. We have been to Bermuda twice before and loved it. We had friends going with us who had never been there. We were supposed to go to Princess Cay first then Bermuda. We were supposed to spend a day and a half in Bermuda. Because Princess Cay sustained damage due to the hurricane, we were sent to Nassau. For some reason it too longer to get to Bermuda from Nassau than it would have from Princess Cay. Our time in Bermuda was cut short by a third. We didn't arrive in Bermuda till after noon and by the time we docked and approved by customs, it was well after one oclock before we could go ashore. We took the ferry to Hamilton arrived about 3:30. We wanted to take a bus to St. George, which would take about 45 minutes. The last ferry from St. George to the Dock Yard was 4:30pm. Most of the shops and sites close about 5:30/6:00pm. The next day we had to be back on the ship by 11:30am. Not time to really see the island. Very disappointed about the change in schedule and no reimbursement from Carnival. Princess Cay is in the Bahamas as is Nassau and according to the map a little lower. I don't understand why it took longer to get from Nassau to Bermuda than it would have from Princess Cay to Bermuda. Our friends were also extremely disappointed. The entertainment on the ship was great and the ship had the best cruise director we've ever had a cruise. I must say the food was so much better than what we had on the Esctacy in June. Desserts were wonderful, Wait staff very friendly and called us by name. Cabin was fine, plenty of closet space, Carnival is not very stringent on hand washing as other ships such as Norwegian. The buffet dining room needs some reconfiguration. The hanging lights don't line up with the tables. A lot of people bumping their heads including us. I gave the overall rating a poor because the main reason we went on this cruise was to go with our friends to see Bermuda. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
My husband and I chose this cruise because we had never been on one prior and wanted something close to home. Upon entering the ship we knew it was not for us. It was so crowded we had trouble getting to our room to put our bags down. The ... Read More
My husband and I chose this cruise because we had never been on one prior and wanted something close to home. Upon entering the ship we knew it was not for us. It was so crowded we had trouble getting to our room to put our bags down. The room itself was not bad but the "queen" bed was really just two twin beds placed side by side. This made sleeping terrible. We proceeded to the Lido deck only to find the pools overcrowded, drunk people all over, and food waste left and right. I have never seen so many people gorging themselves like we did on this cruise. The amount of food that went to waste was atrocious. Half Moon Cay was beautiful we both loved it. We stayed as long as we could. We returned to the ship to shower and come back to walk the beach only to find the entire place trashed with beer bottles and plastic cups. The people on this cruise made it all so awful. I blame Carnival for not having someone take bags to these people to collect garbage. There were staff present on the beach (like Adam our cruise director) who watched all of this and did not care. It was sickening. I have never seen so many people disrespecting an area like this in my life. Nassau was dirty, smelly, and overcrowded much like Sunshine. We will definitely not be returning to this ship (or any other Carnival ship). Carnival does not respect its employees, guests, or the environment and beaches it takes guests to. GOOD RIDDANCE!!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
I'm not sure that I've ever given a negative review of a cruise before but there is a first time for everything ... We live in Charleston so we were very excited to sail out of our home port. Avid cruisers, we've enjoyed ... Read More
I'm not sure that I've ever given a negative review of a cruise before but there is a first time for everything ... We live in Charleston so we were very excited to sail out of our home port. Avid cruisers, we've enjoyed Carnival, RCCL and Disney cruises and have always praised Carnival for its service and food quality, as well as the variety of entertainment. That said, I feel that the service has deteriorated dramatically since our last Carnival cruise. This ship, in particular, was aged badly and there was no sign of the daily maintenance that we were used to seeing in the past. Our room steward was Ok but the room itself looked old and unclean. Our wait staff was below average; one was even visibly annoyed when my nephew and I would order multiple desserts to share. The food wasn't appetizing, except for the Guy's Burger Joint, the taco stand and the deli. One word of caution, Guy's Burger would only give you one onion ring per burger... I've never been denied any food request on a cruise ship until now...Anyone else think that pre-paying tips may be the death of good service on a cruise??? I've also noticed that with the new drink package option, there are no longer nearly as many waiters available pool side. With the exception of one day, we had to walk to the bar for each drink. Given that we have two kids that were playing in the pool or napping; that is way easier said than done. Finally, the ship wasn't family friendly and the kids' club hours were not long enough and it didn't matter because my kids didn't want to go anyway.... Unfortunately, this will probably be our 11th and FINAL Carnival cruise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Our family cruise to the Bahamas Pros...The entertainment, staff, activities, Adam (cruise director), and Guys Burger was good. Cons..the cabin was horrible! When we first walked into the cabin it was sticky stuff on the carpet. We were ... Read More
Our family cruise to the Bahamas Pros...The entertainment, staff, activities, Adam (cruise director), and Guys Burger was good. Cons..the cabin was horrible! When we first walked into the cabin it was sticky stuff on the carpet. We were told by housekeeping that he tried to clean it but it wouldn’t come clean. We were told that we would have a king size bed and a rollout bed but instead of getting a rollout bed we got a metal cot that sat on that nasty floor! And to top it off it was hot in our cabin. Our daughter have asthma and she was very uncomfortable. We complained to guest services multiple times and they offered us a box fan. We were told by guest services that 70 degrees was standard for the room temperature but our room temperature was ranging from 72-75. It felt better in the hallway than it did in our cabin. Our daughter have asthma and she was very uncomfortable. Once we arrived home we called carnival and customer services was saying that 75 degrees is standard for the cabin temperature. I think they could have been a lot more understanding. This will definitely be my last time cruising with Carnival. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose the port of Charleston because we did not want to fly to Florida, the cost of the flight for 2 adults and 2 children would have been almost as much as the price of the cruise. So we drove 8 hours to the port. Easy approach to ... Read More
We chose the port of Charleston because we did not want to fly to Florida, the cost of the flight for 2 adults and 2 children would have been almost as much as the price of the cruise. So we drove 8 hours to the port. Easy approach to the port, fast parking, great service at the port of Charleston. Getting on the boat, was a breeze. We had purchased "faster to the fun" and it got us on the boat quickly. This was the only time "faster to the fun" was of any help. First night on the boat, it became apparent that Carnival had packed as many people on-board as possible. It was very VERY crowded. We soon learned that there was going to be long lines for everything. The pool was overfilled with children, the hot tubs on the lido deck were full of children splashing and being loud. Parents let their children run wild with little to no supervision. Many children were darting through the crowds and on the interior walkways of the ship bumping into people and being very loud late into the night. There was a constant sewer smell around deck 4 the entire time we were on the ship. Anytime you went that direction, you caught the smell and was kinda gross. Camp Ocean was OK for the kids, they did complain that one of the staff were rude to them while there and it took some convincing for them to want to go back. Room Steward was amazing gentleman that took very good care of us our entire cruise. He cleaned the room twice a day, made towel animals for the kids, kept our ice bucket full at all times and took the time to learn our names and spoke to us at every opportunity. We tipped him in cash very well. $20/ $30/ $40 at a time. Tipping- We opted to tip in cash and NOT pre-pay or gratuity. So we took a large stack of $5 and $1 bills for tipping (more than a few hundred dollars). We passed out tips to almost every employee we had any encounter with. We were very generous with our tipping. On the third morning of the cruise, I used the Carnival Hub app to check our account activity and found that we had been charged $280 for gratuity. I immediately went to guest services and had them remove the charge and explained that there was no mention prior to booking of an automatic gratuity, only the option to pre-pay gratuity. Which we opted to tip cash (anyone that has been in the service industry knows that cash in hand is better than a charged tip). Faster to the fun- NOT WORTH IT. Only helps when initially getting onto the boat on the first day at port. Excursions- Stingray adventure at Half Moon Cay was enjoyable. Instructions on where to be at what time, were horrible. We had no indication on where to check in. We walked almost all the way to the building with the stingrays only to be told that we need to sign in at the front of the island and ride the tram to the stingray adventure location. My wife and two girls had a 12:30 appointment, and got bumped back because it was overbooked. Then they got left at the stingray adventure with no tram available and were forced with about 20 others to walk all the way back. The empty tram passed them along the route and did not even stop to offer a ride. Balmoral Island Dolphin swim- 9:30 meeting time at the Nassau port, got off the boat nice and early and were basically first in line. Once the excursion workers arrived, it was apparent their attitude towards us was poor at best. Not helpful, not caring. It seemed like since they already had our money, that we were stuck and along for the ride. We were escorted to a small boat, asked a few questions to the un-attentive worker that was on her phone from the moment I first saw her. She acted very bothered that we spoke to her. They counted out 110 passengers for the ferry to Balmoral Island. Then walked us to the boat, then a second group joined our group which made us over capacity. We missed the first boat by 5 people and were left on the dock with no instruction, to wait and bake in the heat for an hour before another boat arrived. Its now 10:30 and we have been off the ship to two hours waiting in the sun and just now getting onto a ferry. Arrived at the island and had to wait in another line to sign a waiver for the dolphin swim. Was given a time slot of 12:45. So our 9:30 turned into 12:45. Very misleading. Waited around on the island, swam in ocean, at lunch ($22 for 1 serving of chicken tenders that came in a styrofoam "to-go" box similar to fast food). We split it among the 4 of us to hold us over till we got back to the ship. THE DOLPHINS WERE AWESOME! The two trainers, not sure of their names were great! They had obviously paid attention to their previous customers needs and were very attentive and made the dolphin swim a complete blast. Cannot say enough about those two guys, they were professional and courteous and did their jobs well. Lockers were provided at the building for the dolphin swim, but there were only 18 available for around 45 people. We had to leave all of our belongings out in the open (passports, cash, phones etc.) Thankfully, everything was left untouched. We finally made it back to the docks around 3:15pm, and needed to be back on the ship by 4:30. We were left with very little time to experience Nassau, but it honestly only took a few moments to realize what a trash hole this place was. There were multiple instances of police sirens that should have been an indicator before we ever left the cruise boat. Nearly every person was rude, pushy and aggressive towards us. The streets are dirty, not maintained at all and there are abandoned buildings and boats littered about. For a port that almost 100% is reliant upon tourism, they really do nothing to keep the place maintained. One man photo-bombed a picture I took of my daughter and then tried to demand I give him money. We were very disappointed that our 9:30am excursion was so misleading and took up the entire day. Carnival really needs to work on their crowd control and better organization with these excursions to increase everyone's enjoyment. We went back to the ship, at at Guy Fieri burger joint, which we were starving and the burgers were absolutely amazing! If you have read this far, I hope this review gives an accurate portrayal of what you can expect. I should have been more prepared for the crowds and the money gouging and the rudeness of the Nassau citizens. In summary, the cruize staff were absolutely amazing we were very well taken care of. The food was awesome. The drinks were weak, but we were not there to get drunk, so it was ok. Nassau citizens and excursion staff were absolutely horrible. Cruise director Adam was incredible. Every show we went to was excellent, just be prepared to wait in long lines for everything. Be prepared to pay 18% gratuity on every purchase, and then be charged $70 per person gratuity on top of that with no warning. Think of it like going to the shopping mall on black friday, once everyone is jammed inside, they lock the doors, triple the price on everything, crank up the heat and start serving alcohol for $15 a drink while everyone lets their kids run absolutely wild. If you can handle that, you will have fun. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose this cruise because of location convenience for a bachelorette party. Pros: James was amazing and went above and beyond to help accommodate our bachelorette party. Joey and his team were a great steward and attentive to our ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of location convenience for a bachelorette party. Pros: James was amazing and went above and beyond to help accommodate our bachelorette party. Joey and his team were a great steward and attentive to our needs. The spa services were incredible and exceeded my expectations. Kristel and Suba were great servers! Roger makes the best mojitos! Cons: guest services needs improvement. Upon our arrival, the room we were booked in was not up to our expectations (do not book 4 adults in one room). I went to guest services to ask if there was another room available so we could split our party up and that i was willing to pay anything. I was told the cruise ship was sold out, but when another group in our party had a problem with a bed, they were put in another room. This leads me to believe Carnival lied to me about being sold out and lost out on the chance to increase their revenue. Dinner reservations were incorrect 2 of the three nights and the staff was difficult to work with to accommodate our party. Overall, most staff was great but I will never be returning to a carnival cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
CONS: * Raised daily parking to $20 a day * Ship feels way over capacity with the additional cabins. It's a constant battle everyday trying to find a chair outside anywhere. No exaggeration its rediculous. * Food in the ... Read More
CONS: * Raised daily parking to $20 a day * Ship feels way over capacity with the additional cabins. It's a constant battle everyday trying to find a chair outside anywhere. No exaggeration its rediculous. * Food in the dining room seemed like the worst choices in any of my 8 cruises thus far. For the first time ever only ate there on formal night. * Outside movie night again good luck finding any seats unless you go extremely early *Air conditioning was not very comfortable at all within cabin. Always on the hot side. *Comedy shows or any shows were almost impossible to see due to the over population of people and the extremely small venues *Guys burgers on other ships were the best I've ever had, just very average on the sunshine * Ran out of food and condiments. Due to the overpopulation the ship would run out of mayonnaise or French fries for a day or two until it hit port. *Room television is outdated with limited channels *Bathroom seemed smaller then usual. If sitting on toilet had to put one foot in the shower. *Room refrigerator just barely gets cold *Twin beds pushed together to make a queen but it separates every night so you either fall in the crack or just sleep far apart from each other. * Pizza place always a long wait *Sandwich place always a long wait *Blue Iguanna mexican always a long wait *Not many shelves in the cabin to put clothes *Bars were very slow for drinks. * 2 Ice machines always struggle to produce ice. *Only two pools and very overcrowded. The adult pool seems to of once been the kiddie pool because half of it is 2" of water. *Not much to do on the boat unless you just want to gamble. PROS: *Sandwich place was the best food there *Blue Iguanna was good *Breakfast in the dining room has steak and eggs every other morning. The steak is a filet and by leaps and bounds the best single meal you can receive on the boat. *Dining room for breakfast or brunch was good. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Our 14th Carnival cruise and we chose The Sunshine. We had 1 inside and 1 balcony, cabin was pretty well average, bathrooms seemed smaller than most. Dining was challenging at best. Food has gotten downright bad. Food had no flavor, ... Read More
Our 14th Carnival cruise and we chose The Sunshine. We had 1 inside and 1 balcony, cabin was pretty well average, bathrooms seemed smaller than most. Dining was challenging at best. Food has gotten downright bad. Food had no flavor, even pizza was tasteless. Deli was good, as well as Guy;s Burger. The entertainment was good, but the theater was dated. All the workers we encountered were great. Carnival needs to find a new port and drop Nassau. It with all it's income and visitors, should have a new air conditioned vendors area, instead of all the vendors selling the same thing in booths you can't find anything in. This port hasn't changed since 2004. Ship overall is on the downside, I may try RC on my next cruise. Charleston could be the best port in US if they would tear down the old warehouses and build a better port. Being platinum didn't help except disembarkation the last day.Carnival needs to give passengers more public areas on all new ships. You can't just build biggers ships, just for more cabins and more people. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Chose this cruise to celebrate birthdays of two family members. Seven of the thirteen members of our party are platinum Carnival cruise members. The ship is in good condition, however the cleanliness of the lower deck lounging area and ... Read More
Chose this cruise to celebrate birthdays of two family members. Seven of the thirteen members of our party are platinum Carnival cruise members. The ship is in good condition, however the cleanliness of the lower deck lounging area and lounge chairs was terrible, bordering on disgusting. Dirt and dried white paint flecks were all over the chairs, sticking to towels and clothing. The selections and quality of the main dining menu has slipped when compared with other Carnival cruises I have taken. Overall dining room service has deteriorated. Our party was led to a table that had no chairs on the first evening. Ordered menu items were not delivered or incorrect items delivered on multiple occasions. The buffet on the other hand was quite good in selection and quality. Wine was delivered to our room with no means to uncork the bottles. I phoned to have the bottle uncorked. A cheap corkscrew was delivered for my use. Took me a while to figure how to make it work. The entertainment was good, however it seems there is a bias towards presenting comedy entertainment in the smaller rooms rather than production shows in the larger rooms. The casino experience overall was quite good with a variety of available table games. Getting a comp drink seems to be nearly impossible. Children's activities remain quite good. The priority boarding experience was excellent. The disembarkation process was a disaster. The boat arrived in port late with no reason provided nor were we given instructions regarding latest disembarkation meeting times and locations. "Priority" passengers were moved into disembarkation lines after some non-priority passengers had already disembarked. The fitness area is well equipped, although a number of treadmills and other machines were not completely fuctional. No room to stretch, and few mats available. Apparently Carnival customer service does not care to respond to survey complaints. A letter directed to the SVP Carnival Corporation Investor Relations remains unanswered. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Do not sail the Sunshine if you are sensitive to cigarette smoke. Cigarette smoke from the casino filled the ventilation system the entire cruise. I get migraines from cigarette smoke, therefore, I had a migraine the entire 7 day cruise. ... Read More
Do not sail the Sunshine if you are sensitive to cigarette smoke. Cigarette smoke from the casino filled the ventilation system the entire cruise. I get migraines from cigarette smoke, therefore, I had a migraine the entire 7 day cruise. We complained several times. Our cabin steward put an ozone machine in our cabin several times which only helped for about an hour. We sailed this ship on a charter cruise that did not allow smoking in the casino and there was no issue. Our cabin steward, I Wayan, was wonderful. Our dining staff was also excellent- Gennies, I Dewan and Sherwan. Felipe, the cruise director was fun during the cruise. But when it came to disembarkment, he was not efficient and there were packs of people on each floor blocking the elevators. This was a safety hazard and thete was nothing express about leaving the ship with your luggage. Terrible experience getting off the ship. No more Carnival cruises for us. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Our cabin steward was excellent, but that was about all; he was named Lamphong and he was great. Otherwise, the cruise was fairly mediocre, stopping in several Caribbean ports including their manufactured island in the Bahamas. We had a ... Read More
Our cabin steward was excellent, but that was about all; he was named Lamphong and he was great. Otherwise, the cruise was fairly mediocre, stopping in several Caribbean ports including their manufactured island in the Bahamas. We had a veranda room looking out at the very aft of the ship, which cost more than the regular veranda rooms. We were surprised to find a dinky veranda, no larger that the others on either side of the ship. The main dining room featured formica tables without table cloths; I thought they perhaps could add to this truck stop theme by placing squeeze bottles of ketchup and mustard, and perhaps hot sauce, in a little stainless steel holder. Much better was the Havana Bar on the Lido deck, which featured excellent omelettes each morning. Also, the hamburger stand by the very small pool was great. No bathrobes, no binoculars, nothing extra. This ship, unlike other Carnivals, did have a library with more than a dozen books, and it did have ample launderettes. The prime rib was paper-thin and tough, but the steak and eggs for breakfast in the main dining room had a small fillet mignon. Overall, this ship and cruise did not compare to a similar one we took a few months ago on Holland America. The ship itself is ship-shape, and we give them high marks for the embarkation and disembarkation process as well as luggage delivery. Carnival knows how to move people. The entertainment was fine. I'll confess that we'd already taken shore excursions to the ports we stopped at, so we benefited from low population around the pool on port days. It was harum-scarum at the pool on sea days. This was a adult cruise, so I can't comment on kid's activities, but Carnival has a great reputation for that sort of thing. Overall the best thing I can say is that our cabin service was superior. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
This review concerns only the Carnival ship and company. Our cruise was an adult-only charter and we had no complaints about its organisers. Our overall impression was of a penny-pinching enterprise seeking to squeeze every last dime ... Read More
This review concerns only the Carnival ship and company. Our cruise was an adult-only charter and we had no complaints about its organisers. Our overall impression was of a penny-pinching enterprise seeking to squeeze every last dime from its captive customers. Specifically : - Food in general was very poor. Everything in the buffet was cold and poor quality (exception: the bacon was lovely). The MDR was pretentious and lacking real quality. The smaller venues (omelette station, Blue Iguana, pizza bar...) were notably better although the burger bar food was disgusting. Most places were closed too often, giving a poor choice of food for "non-standard" meal-times. Conform or go hungry? - Drinks prices were outrageous (with alcohol packages unavailable on charters - I can't think why). Wine “deals” were available at slightly less outrageous prices, whereby you effectively pre-purchased bottles from a selection. Having taken our money THEY RAN OUT of the most popular wines. We felt defrauded. We also often received our wine when our meal was half over. Water that wasn't heavily chlorinated and decent coffee also had to be paid for. - They confiscated the bottles of wine we brought onto the ship as apparently we had put them in the “wrong suitcase". They were never returned, despite the letter that said they would be! That left a VERY bitter taste (but presumably a rather pleasant one for staff). - The internet was extremely expensive, with very limited options to choose from. There definitely ought to be a per-minute option too for those who just want to research a lunch in port etc. The staff, without exception, were friendly and helpful. However there was a noticeable lack of management and training at the level above their individual jobs. They need to know how it all fits together! Our cabin, a deck 7 interior, was absolutely fine. It was well designed, had just enough storage, and nothing was damaged or missing. The only problem - a grave one - was that the toilet stopped flushing on several occasions towards the end of the cruise. It was quickly fixed each time but it was difficult to cope with, particularly in the night. The self-serve launderette on our floor was useful although each wash, dry and detergent cost a rather high $7.50. The gym facilities were also adequate. The ship has had major refits, I believe. There are certainly some oddities, including confusing lifts. Two major problems are: 1. The casino forms a main thoroughfare, particularly when it's raining, and smoking is normally allowed there. It wasn't on our cruise, but the stench lingers. 2. Everyone walks through the Limelight Lounge to get to the MDR as there are few viable alternatives. The route runs along the edge of the stage - most off-putting for everyone. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
I have always bragged to others about the quality and variety of food on the Carnival Menu and buffets. BUT on the Sunshine it was the worst food ever encountered on a cruise ship. Our food was cold, crusty, and dried. The salads were ... Read More
I have always bragged to others about the quality and variety of food on the Carnival Menu and buffets. BUT on the Sunshine it was the worst food ever encountered on a cruise ship. Our food was cold, crusty, and dried. The salads were browned lettuce and soups were cold. The service was extremely slow and not acceptable at all. We are both diamond VIP members with Carnival. We have sailed on over two hundred cruises and most every cruise line. We understand that booking with different cruise lines you will experience different types of food, however, cold, tasteless, no quality food is unacceptable regardless of the cruise line. The Carnival product has greatly deteriorated and is not at all like previous Carnival cruises we have experienced on most every cruise ship in their fleet! We are very concerned that this ship does not follow ADA guidelines. It was one of the most unfriendly to handicapped passengers in wheelchairs and the guests were unwilling to share the elevators even though the US law states that wheelchair passengers have first priority in the elevator use. Fellow passengers are getting more and more antagonistic toward those who cannot walk and must use a wheelchair as well as the cruise ship staff! It is interesting to note that Carnival is changing the booking mechanism for handicapped cabins. They have gone from wheelchair cabins with roll in showers to calling the same exact cabin a "walker" cabin thereby eliminating the need to accommodate wheelchair guests. It is blatant discrimination. We will carefully review our choices for cruising this year and go back to cruise line whose product we can trust. Carnival product is no longer the same. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We cruised on this ship when it was the Destiny and had a great experience. This was the total opposite. Let me first say that our cruise director Mikey was AMAZING. I’d sail with him as CD again any day, he went above and beyond. ... Read More
We cruised on this ship when it was the Destiny and had a great experience. This was the total opposite. Let me first say that our cruise director Mikey was AMAZING. I’d sail with him as CD again any day, he went above and beyond. Pros: JiJi Restaurant was wonderful! Make sure to try the pork belly, pot stickers, and the wide noodles. This is family style dining so everyone gets to try each dish. Service was amazing! Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse is a must! Our top choices were the smoked oysters, essence of tomato shots from the chef, and of course the ribeye. Great service & great food. Cons: This is the first cruise I’ve ever been on that most of the staff were rude or just plain ignored passengers. We normally tip very well, but walked off this ship without tipping above those already billed. The lido buffet was AWFUL! The only thing we ate in there was breakfast 3 times and two salads for lunch. Same bland, greasy, over cooked food every day. Not sure what was going on with the elevators but they were slow and most of the time blew by your floor. Waited more than five minutes several times. Maybe the elevator problem had something to do with children allowed to play in the elevators. An example, we entered an elevator with a approx 12 year old boy sitting in the floor eating an ice cream cone. The boy was laughing at the fact he had pushed all the buttons and was just riding up and down. His buddy was doing the same in the adjacent elevator. Want a deck chair? Better get up at 5 am to reserve one. Staff were allowing passengers to hold chairs by placing their belongings there for hours at a time. Want peace on the Serenity deck? Better find a better place, like front row center at a heavy metal concert. No where to sit, loud, kids running around. I think Carnival really missed the mark when the started doing away with the aft adults only pool areas. Did I say the staff? We had Your Time Dining, one side of the dining room was pleasant and the other actually gave me a dirty look. The bright spot was Nestor and his team including Jennifer who never stopped smiling. I’d give the other wait staff’s name that gave me a dirty look but he never gave us his name & didn’t spend enough time at our table to notice his name tag. We did enjoy our room steward but the cabin aft deck 7 had an odd amount of dust everywhere. Also we had a mildew smell in our cabin that seemed to be coming from the drain. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
This ship reminds me of a six year old mini van. It will get you there and back but it has no style, grace or wow factor. After a 100+ cruises I believe I have a decent idea of what to expect. This review takes a quick, broad ... Read More
This ship reminds me of a six year old mini van. It will get you there and back but it has no style, grace or wow factor. After a 100+ cruises I believe I have a decent idea of what to expect. This review takes a quick, broad view. You can have a poor meal or cabin steward on a great ship and a great meal etc on a poor ship, it is the overall experience that counts. Ship-Is old, worn (not dirty) and poorly designed. It therefore feels cramped and crowded. It doesn't have the style/grace of some older ships or the wow of some newer ones. On the up side all the public restrooms I visited were very clean. On the down badly worn carpet, pealing wall paper and just a general look of heavy use deter from experience. Our sliding door would not lock and we had high winds for a day, this resulted in a high pitch squeal in the cabin. The adult area is large, away from the kids area and overall nice. The one main pool is a mess. Had an incident on one sea day that they had to close the pool, One pool and it was closed, great! Three hot tubs and one of those closed as well. Just overall a poorly designed ship. Overall below average. Food- Better then expected, small servings, but you can always get two. Interesting the MDR was better then expected and the upcharge one's were below expectations. Much better then a recent RCL cruise and on par with a recent NCL. The lack of staff in the upcharge locations was troubling. Overall above expectations. Staff-The ones we dealt with were good, but there are not enough. Every position, bars, dining, room stewards etc were under staffed. Carnival has cut back to the point that it is a continuing problem. We did have several problems with the photo department, including closing a portrait location while we were in line to get pictures. Overall above average, just not enough. Entertainment- I though it was good, but it fit my style. I like Disco and one of the shows did this very well, not so much if you are a county fan. Hate to even comment on it because it is so based on everyone's tastes. Overall above expectations. Getting on and off were ok, again crowded. The cabin keys are now on the ship in your room. Saves time and works well. Overall Average. Chances are I would not rebook this ship, but if you have dates or ports that this is the only option (as we did) then it will work. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
We chose this ship because we wanted a New Years cruise. First, I will start with the good. Embarkation was very fast. Mikey, the cruise director tried his best but was letdown from the Vista, which we sailed on last year. Our dining room ... Read More
We chose this ship because we wanted a New Years cruise. First, I will start with the good. Embarkation was very fast. Mikey, the cruise director tried his best but was letdown from the Vista, which we sailed on last year. Our dining room staff Eric; Carlos and Iketut were incredible and fun. Now the bad. We were supposed to dock in the Dominican Republic but were not able to land due to weather, nothing Carnival could do but disappointing when we were ready for 2 ports. However, there were there did not appear to be any alternative plans made in case we couldn’t dock. The buffet menu was almost same everyday. Staff on ship just looked miserable and many were just rude. We went to walk on the track but apparently during the day it’s not possible because the track path is covered in loungers forcing you to walk through the games area, interrupting the games. The photographers were horrible. Normally we have too many pictures to choose from but the bulk of these pictures went in the bin. The New Years pictures had the words chopped off or parts of our bodies missing. Also for the Veteran Appreciation we took a group picture and were then charged for it. Way to appreciate us. The staff in Pixels Gallery couldn’t have been more unaccomodating and rude if they tried. Having the pictures sent digitally as they were on The Vista would have been better. They were available on the hub so you could see them almost immediately. There were activities that were cancelled and we had no idea until we sat there for a while. Finally, a curfew should be enacted. There were children running around well past midnight. We also had a domestic fight that we had to call security for. Other than that we did enjoy the company of the other cruisers. They were definitely a friendly and fun bunch. Ship could use some remodeling and updating Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Service personnel is great. Every day there was a SEWER SMELL that was OVERWHELMING near the elevators on your way up to eat. Was disgusting. Staff was very attentive. Entertainment was on a high school level as far as talent. Nothing ... Read More
Service personnel is great. Every day there was a SEWER SMELL that was OVERWHELMING near the elevators on your way up to eat. Was disgusting. Staff was very attentive. Entertainment was on a high school level as far as talent. Nothing like other ships we have been on in the past. Debarkment was ridiculous. We were asked several times to leave our room from 8:30-9:15 yet only one floor was asked to leave the ship. We had nowhere to wait and then stood in line from the elevators to the exit of the ship for TWO HOURS! Get your stuff together Carnival. That was absolutely the most unorganized cruise I have ever tried to get off of. Never again with that cruise line. No signs or help to shuttles. Another hour and a half of waiting in line with no directions and CLEARLY short staff. The best people in debarkment were the porters!! Food same every day. Spend your money on a better ship. This ship is old and shows it. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
We chose carnival sunshine to celebrate our 20th Anniversary. The port of calls were Amber Cove, Saint Thomas, San Juan, and Caicos ‘s and Turks. We noticed that the ship seemed to be at full capacity of people, making it very crowded ... Read More
We chose carnival sunshine to celebrate our 20th Anniversary. The port of calls were Amber Cove, Saint Thomas, San Juan, and Caicos ‘s and Turks. We noticed that the ship seemed to be at full capacity of people, making it very crowded on the inside and outside of the ship. Every evening dining we would spend over 2 1/2 hours in the dining area due to service being maxed out. Due to that we would miss several shows. During the morning and lunch times, you would be lucky if you got a server to get your order for a soft drink. Inside the hallways where the rooms were had a very bad smell of sewage and the floor on hallway one you could feel holes underneath the carpet making it where people would almost fall.The first night we had no hot water in our room. When we ported at San Juan, the ship was delayed from leaving due to mechanical failure. When they finally got the ship back in operation they stated that we would not be stopping at Caicos and Turks. The main reason we decided to cruise with carnival was to visit Caicos and Turks for our anniversary. The captain decided to give each person a $50.00 dollar reimbursement. I don’t feel that $50.00 made up for a port of call that I paid more for. When contacting carnival customer service the answer I got was I’m sorry that you had a bad experience and I will have this looked into. No offers of refunds or discounts at all. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
I have been on Carnival cruise several times this is by far the WORST!! First let me start with the positive. The staff is wonderful. But you have lost the personality by overworking them. They do not have time to introduce themselves and ... Read More
I have been on Carnival cruise several times this is by far the WORST!! First let me start with the positive. The staff is wonderful. But you have lost the personality by overworking them. They do not have time to introduce themselves and interact with the people. I realize you are paying them to do a job not to socialize but a few sentences with each person goes a long way. Mikey is a great cruise director. The big screen on deck is good. Food is ok the best was the soups. Now to the cons. We were on the 1st floor (Thanks travel agent) not. There was a stench so horrible for the first 3 days. I called and they did spray but it only covered it 20 minutes. We were in room 1489 going left there is an incline and to the left a hole in the floor under the carpet you can not see it. I twisted my ankle there and 3 other soft spots on the 1st deck. My husband turned the water on in the sink and it scolded his hand. THIS NEEDS TO BE CHECK BEFORE A CHILD IS HURT. Decks 6 and 7 was flooding or that is what they told me when I tried to get a coffee at the shop and they were closed in the middle of the day. Then the ship had problems and we missed our port at Grand Turk. This was the worst but I think this ship is in very bad shape. It needs to be brought in and overhauled to go on that long of a voyage. I was very, very disappointed in this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
sailed on sunshine before . wanted to go back . This cruise was ; the cruise from hell. Whatever could go wrong , did. Major problem was FTTF. Delayed on check-in, boarded with non FTTF guest. No stickers put on cabin cards waited in long ... Read More
sailed on sunshine before . wanted to go back . This cruise was ; the cruise from hell. Whatever could go wrong , did. Major problem was FTTF. Delayed on check-in, boarded with non FTTF guest. No stickers put on cabin cards waited in long line at front desk to get them put on. confirmed Reservations for dinner not honored. when talked to dining staff, told them of reservations made a year ago, they just dismissed me and said sorry. Cabin was not ready when we boarded plus the air was not working. took two days to get it working half way . Luggage arrived after everyone on our floor got theirs; then 2 pieces didn't show up until very late in the day. the only thing that worked on FTTF was getting off the ship. We are repeat cruisers on Carnival and unfortunately, we noticed how their service has gone downhill over the last 3 years. Before that , the service was excellent. Carnival should be more honest with people who purchase FTTF . Tell them that not all aspects of it work. For people who purchase it just to get on and get off quicker, more power to them, I will no longer waste my money on a program where only one or two of the perks work. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Carnival Sunshine Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 4.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 3.6
Entertainment 5.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 3.7
Fitness & Recreation 5.0 N/A
Family 4.0 3.8
Shore Excursions 3.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 3.0 N/A
Service 4.0 4.0
Value for Money 5.0 N/A

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