2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
This was our second cruise with Carnival. Our first was a 7 day Western Caribbean with just me and my husband. For this time around, we wanted a shorter cruise, not too far from home to take our 4 kids. I assumed that since both cruises ... Read More
This was our second cruise with Carnival. Our first was a 7 day Western Caribbean with just me and my husband. For this time around, we wanted a shorter cruise, not too far from home to take our 4 kids. I assumed that since both cruises were with the same cruise line they would be the same in quality and experience- they were not. There were many of differences (sadly, most of them were negative). Things that were the same- - Our cabin was clean and beds were cozy. I love Carnival's Comfort Bed Collection. I have a hard time sleeping away from home and I think all beds are too hard and uncomfortable. These aren't. I slept like a baby. - Food in the dining room did not disappoint- just as great as our Caribbean cruise. The buffet was pretty much the same- mediocre buffet food. My kids loved the ice cream though. - The dining room and housekeeping staff were friendly and did an outstanding job, as usual. Things that were different- - Surprisingly, most of the other staff were very rude and not friendly at all. It was almost painful to get a smile out of them. - The buffet dining area tables were a mess. The staff in charge of cleaning off the tables would clear the tables but didn't wipe them off, leaving them a greasy mess. - I noticed the food staff skimped on the good stuff with this cruise. They had a worker at the sweets table cutting slices of cake and desserts paper thin. And the mozzarella cheese on the pizzas were pretty much non-existent. Normally, I absolutely love their pizzas! Good thing that the guys' burger place was the same deliciousness! - It seemed very unorganized. We didn't leave the Long Beach port until almost two hours after scheduled departure. We had to wait for an hour for our safety briefing in a smokey casino/bar with our kids- not good. - The ship is very small compared to other Carnival ships. There were pros and cons to this: I liked that my kids could make their way around the ship fairly easy and not get lost. However, I didn't like that often times we had to walk through the bar/casino area to get where we wanted to go. Also, because the ship is smaller, I felt like they were more limited on their choices for activity locations. Because of this, the more popular adult activities get priority of locations. For example, they had a Harry Potter trivia activity where mostly families and children were attending, in a bar right next to the casino. That wasn't a good location for a family activity, yet, the other lounges were being used for Bingo and other activities. Also, we had way more seasickness on this cruise. I think the smaller boat and the rougher waters made everything way more noticeable. - I wan't impressed with this cruise director or the "fun squad" at all. The activities were ok- nothing to rave about. They had the usual Bingo and late night entertainment. However, I felt like the activities for families and kids were lacking. The last day on the ship you would have thought because it was a sea day they would have filled it with super fun activities, however there were only a few activities that were actually fun that they weren't trying to sell you something. My sister commented that they call the ship imagination because you have to use your imagination for activities. - The clubs for kids were ok. My 7 and 10 year old went to Camp Ocean. They really liked the free time and made some cute crafts. However, when they went back they hated it because there were so many kids in there that it felt way too crazy and unorganized for them. So that seemed like a hit or miss thing. My 13 year old went to Circle C. He really liked meeting new friends and playing video games, however, for me, it was way too unorganized. I would go to get him for dinner or a family activity and they would be closed with just a sign up saying the club was closed. I had no idea where he was or what he was doing. There were three times I had to go to guest services to try to track him down. I think part of this was my fault. I didn't understand how the CircleC club worked. Because of the age, they are able to just come and go as they please, and sometimes the whole group would all leave to go play mini golf or whatever and just put a sign up and lock the door. For parents who don't mind their kids wandering the ship and doing whatever, it would be fine, but I didn't like that. Overall, I think this would be a great cruise for singles or couples who are just looking for a quick "getaway", or to party. I wouldn't recommend it for families. In fact, because of my experience here, I will be sailing with Carnival's competition on my next cruise. It's too bad because our Carnival cruise last year was so amazing. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
-Entertainment was fantastic. If Cruise Director Melessa is there, you are in for a great time. Gender Battle, Hairy Chest Competition (go Berta) - on the floor laughing. Eric Schwartz was extremely funny. The Divas show had great singing ... Read More
-Entertainment was fantastic. If Cruise Director Melessa is there, you are in for a great time. Gender Battle, Hairy Chest Competition (go Berta) - on the floor laughing. Eric Schwartz was extremely funny. The Divas show had great singing and dancing. I went with my 2 teen boys and we all had a great time. -Food was excellent - Guy Fieri burgers were fresh and delicious. PIzza was thin crust, fresh to order, and delicious. Iguana Cantina had great tacos. Skip the Lido dining - buffet didn't look that appetizing although made-to-order omelettes were good. We ate dinner in the Pride Dining Room and had mixed meals and service. -Room was tight for 3 of us. 2 twin beds and a cot. We had the ocean view which was nice. It was clean and served its purpose. -Outdoor activities. Mini golf was fun. Waterslide area was fun - the large slide could have used more water. Pool was too cold to use. Jacuzzi was packed with little kids. We made our way into it but be warned that you will have little arms and legs jamming into you. Never got to use ping pong table since it was always being used. -Excursions. Catalina activities were all cancelled due to weather. We rented a golf cart and drove around the island which was fun. Ensenada - we did horseback riding which was fun with great views. Couldn't quite understand why all the horses were kicking each other though. -Would we go again? YES. Really fun time at a great value. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
I'll be brief. Our room was U104 and since we'd cruised this ship before knew what rooms were like. There is plenty of room and balcony is nice. The room and bathroom are dated but shower was nice. Room steward was lax on ... Read More
I'll be brief. Our room was U104 and since we'd cruised this ship before knew what rooms were like. There is plenty of room and balcony is nice. The room and bathroom are dated but shower was nice. Room steward was lax on upkeep each day and rarely saw this woman. Our communication were thru notes. The bathroom floor was dirty in corners. One day the toilet was backed up from somewhere else. We had to deal with brown stuff in toilet while we waited for someone to figure out flushing was not enough. I stood there one time flushing 20 times to get rid of it. Nothing disappeared. We called and waited for 3 hours. Each time we called we were told someone was on their way. Nothing. Finally someone did show up and said it was fixed. It was but I had to ask for it to be cleaned. We did receive a 63.00 credit for inconvenience. Staff were not friendly except main dining room. We had room service one morning (after putting out our food choice card on door knob night before) and had to end up calling after they were 30 minutes late. Still had to wait another 45 minutes for service. Then no coffee cups. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
There is no question that the price of the cruise makes it worth while. It is not the top of the cruise ship line but neither were the prices. Everything is there for you to make a great trip for yourself. It will be what you make it. We ... Read More
There is no question that the price of the cruise makes it worth while. It is not the top of the cruise ship line but neither were the prices. Everything is there for you to make a great trip for yourself. It will be what you make it. We went on the Dec 30th 2018 4 day cruise. Come prepared - this is a much older ship. There are few portholes, fewer balconies - book an owners suite, grand suite or junior suite for those extra amenities. We had an inside cabin, M100, small, but comfortable. Shower was excellent. The beds were converted to king at out request, so less room. Very limited electrical outlets - bathroom on had shave outlet over mirror. Plug into the ground 3 prong US outlet on left side of mirror with multi-socket extension cord. Will support hair dryer, curling iron, etc. - if not used same time. The ship is basically sealed and the air flow system is excellent. There is smoking around the casino and the smell spreads to adjacent areas. Love Charmin toilet paper so brought our own. Bring some air deodorant, just in case. If you have not gone on a Carnival cruise before beware of daily parking fees; have someone drop you off and pick you up or use Uber/Lyft/Taxi. If you drive drop off people with luggage and then park. Had a very difficult time finding entrance to parking facility and it was jammed with cars. Take a photo of where you are parked so you won't struggle to remember. We brought our own booze on board as Carnival charges a lot for a drink and adds a 15% tip to the mandatory 18% you will pay on your overall expenses. Carried booze on ourselves. Not in luggage. Fast on and off if use transport own luggage. Forget the TV, too small and inadequate. Forget the expensive wifi package. Use your phone and laptop when in port. Found the locally based trips to be better than Carnivals. Went on the Conservancy 3 hour jeep ride over Catalina. Was terrific. It was cold - insulated clothing and gloves needed in open jeep during cold weather. Worth it. Ensenada was closed - except tourist area when we debarked on January 1. Easy walk to and from ship, if you are in reasonably good shape. The ship was essentially full. No problems with kids running/screaming. All kept in check by parents and activities.. Cabin walls are paper thin. Sneeze and hear your neighbors say 'Gesundheit". Shows were good. Better later in evenings when kids not allowed. But, Carnival likes to wake up at 8:00a to tell you about the joys of the day. Cant sleep through it. For us, not a whole lot to do on the ship. All games and entertainment, nothing to learn or listen to. Too cold to be outside beyond mid-afternoon. Ship inside warm and comfortable. Dress - casual and somewhat less. New Year's eve most people dressed up. Ship decoration like Vegas in the 80's - gold, brass, glitz, but nicely kept up. New Year's Eve in the atrium was a lot of fun with music, balloons and streamers galore. Everyone in party mood. People are very friendly. Staff generally great. The food the first night was terrible-essentially non-edible. Then it became really great. Had the Captain's table - if you can get it,+$75/person, do it. Wonderful experience. Breakfast and lunch buffets - excellent. Three hot stations where will cook fresh for you in accord with meal at that time. Must try the hamburgers. Had no room for the burritos but folks said they were great. Again, trip is what you make of it. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
We chose this cruise because we needed a shorter cruise over Christmas leaving from the West Coast. There are 2 choices - Carnival Imagination or Inspiration. So, not a lot of choices - do you want to leave Sunday? Or Monday? This was ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we needed a shorter cruise over Christmas leaving from the West Coast. There are 2 choices - Carnival Imagination or Inspiration. So, not a lot of choices - do you want to leave Sunday? Or Monday? This was once a great, new ship. Now it’s an older ship and much smaller than most ships afloat. It does have a lot of old (I mean 90’s) charm and decor. Public Areas are more compact and the shops, lounges, casino are fairly small. The water slides are very fun and probably great when it’s warmer! The food was ok. They keep a tight reign on the bacon and pass it out at the buffet like it’s made of gold. The burgers & burritos were great choices for afternoon lunching. The at sea “Dr. Seuss Green Eggs & Ham” Brunch is worth $5 charge. It’s super fun - and great for kids. The cabins are dated. There are virtually no balcony cabins on this ship. The decor is old, as are the carpets in the cabins and hallways. I don’t want to bash this cruise entirely. It was fun. It was weird to be gone for Christmas. The dining staff and food was average as was our cabin stewart. The alcoholic drinks are ridiculously expensive and totally NOT worth what they charge. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
Took the 12/13 to 12/16 weekend cruise to Mexico on Carnival Imagination. I have done this trip before and I've always had a good time. The Imagination is an older ship. This is to say that it doesn't have the amenities of ... Read More
Took the 12/13 to 12/16 weekend cruise to Mexico on Carnival Imagination. I have done this trip before and I've always had a good time. The Imagination is an older ship. This is to say that it doesn't have the amenities of the newer ships such as alternative dining or all the extra entertainment options you will find on the new builds. What you will get in return is an uncrowded ship (only about 2000 passengers) and a shower in your stateroom that you can actually turn around in. Sure the rooms don't have a fridge, unless you opt for the suites, but the extra shower room is nice. Breakfast options are abundant: Lido Buffet, Blue Iguana Cantina for breakfast burritos, room service and on sea days the awesome Sea Day brunch. Lunch offerings are Guy's Burger Joint, the deli in the buffet, the buffet, 24 hour pizza pirate and room service. Dinner is the restaurant, deli, pizza pirate, the buffet and room service. I have to admit that I've never ordered room service over the many times I've sailed on Imagination so I cannot rate the service or food quality. Entertainment was good. I have seen Epic Rock more times than I can count and I still enjoy the show. This show has eight singers/dancers who preform songs from Bon Jovi, Queen, Guns & Roses, Aerosmith, Meatloaf, Joan Jett, Journey and others. I always find myself clapping to the beat and cheering the performers. Such a fun time. They also do a show called Divas that features songs by Madonna, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Beyonce, Rhianna and others. It is a fun show, but I prefer Epic Rock. All the employees were friendly. Whether it was a bar steward, a waiter or jr waiter, room steward or someone you were passing in the hall. They all seemed happy and were there with a smile and a friendly hello. I've done just about all the tours and sightseeing there is to do in Ensenada. From visiting La Bufadora, to horseback riding, craft beer and wine tasting and the bar hop tour, I've found that the best way to experience Ensenada is just to get out there and walk around. I have limited Spanish vocabulary but have found that many of the people in the tourist areas speak English. Its Mexico so don't be afraid to haggle with the vendors. They expect it and you will end up paying too much if you don't. In my opinion this is a great vacation option. I only had to take two days off of work. What a great way to let lose and relieve stress. If you're looking for a fun, short cruise without breaking the bank, I recommend taking one of the Carnival weekend cruises. Either Imagination or Inspiration. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
We were looking for warmer weather and this cruise was a great deal. Cabin was very nice but the best part was the dining. We had John, Hossain and Simoj as our wait staff and they made dinner time so must more then awesome. The service ... Read More
We were looking for warmer weather and this cruise was a great deal. Cabin was very nice but the best part was the dining. We had John, Hossain and Simoj as our wait staff and they made dinner time so must more then awesome. The service we received was like going to a four or five star restaurant. We really enjoyed Santa Catalina island and the time on shore, included a glass bottom boat tour while we were there. The island is not large and we were able to see quite a bit of it in the 5 to 6 hours we were there. The show are smaller and have more audience interaction then the larger ships we have been on. We did all the variety shows and a lot of the comedy shows, did not go to any thing we did not like. We enjoyed the cruise and had fun with the people at our table. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
This is a good get away cruise. The embarkation was smooth and quick as they have a large upgraded facility. This will be a plus when the Panarama comes to town. Our Steward, Richmond, was kind, very attentive and met all our needs. ... Read More
This is a good get away cruise. The embarkation was smooth and quick as they have a large upgraded facility. This will be a plus when the Panarama comes to town. Our Steward, Richmond, was kind, very attentive and met all our needs. This is the position that we always give extra tips to. This time we had an inside cabin, due to the small size of the ship, and it had more than enough room for us. Once we boarded we enjoyed a much needed Guy's burger which was delicious! We also hit the deli and the buffet. Rooms were open early so we enyoyed the jacuzzi. We had all of our dinners at the main dining room. The food is always great though it would be good to have more variety added. The breakfast menu was updated and was a great plus with good variety. We stayed on the ship as we had been to the ports before, so we always had chairs by the pool or at the Santuary. The seas day brunch is well worth any wait! The sea day had rain, but we were easily kept busy on our own, though it would be nice to have more of a variety of games or dance classes. The disembarkation was easy and we were off quickly after an early breakfast. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
We did not have our room cleaned the entire trip due to not trusting the housekeeping staff. Unfortunately my husband left his ring on the bathroom shelf. We made a lost report and they have told us three times they could find it. There is ... Read More
We did not have our room cleaned the entire trip due to not trusting the housekeeping staff. Unfortunately my husband left his ring on the bathroom shelf. We made a lost report and they have told us three times they could find it. There is no way housekeeping could have missed it. It’s unfortunate they hire liars and thieves to clean your room. I am very disappointed in the staff. The food was average and the 24hour pizza tastes like frozen pizza. The drinks were over priced and weak for the value. The entertainment was average and boring. The comedians they hired was the best part of the cruise. We watched all of the shows they provided. The water slides they had were freezing cold so no one was on them. There were weird smells all over the ship so it made us want to be outside the majority of the time Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
I have sailed on Holland America, Norwegian and now Carnival. This was my 50th birthday cruise to Ensenada Mexico. It left from Long Beach, CA so was easy to get to from Oregon and it was a short cruise which was ideal since I had several ... Read More
I have sailed on Holland America, Norwegian and now Carnival. This was my 50th birthday cruise to Ensenada Mexico. It left from Long Beach, CA so was easy to get to from Oregon and it was a short cruise which was ideal since I had several friends and family coming along. The ship was older and smaller than previous cruises I have been on. There were things to do on board during our "at sea" day (the first full day even though Ensenada was close by). However, none of us could participate in anything because for the first 24 hours of the cruise the ship was pitching and rolling so much we could barely stand upright. I had my parents with me and some of them are beginning to have mobility issues... I know the ship can't control the ocean and I'm not sure what I would have expected Carnival to do, it was just a difficulty we weren't expecting and that I had not experienced before. Aside from the curve ball mother nature threw us, the cruise was "ok". The room was fine but it would have been nice to have something other than the bed to sit on, and a coffee maker would have been appreciated. The food was marginal - the buffet was not large, there were only two other main dining restaurants and we were assigned to one of them. The manu was limited and the portions were small. There was a sandwich bar, a pizza bar - the quality of thes was so-so. There was also a burger place near the pool - that was a GOOD burger! I think my biggest frustration was the service. On previous cruises, the staff treated us like we were the first and only passengers on the ship giving us attention like they wanted us to have a good time. On this Carnival cruise, the staff were just going through the motions and actually avoided eye contact to get out of serving us on a few occasions! Except for the people that wanted us to buy overpriced stuff on board... For the shore excursion we were going to just go into town, but on the bus on the way, they talked us into going to Bufadora and the Flea Market. I'm really glad we did. It was a lot of fun even though in the market there's a lot of pressure from the vendors to buy their wares. All in all this cruise was pretty much what I intended it to be - a quick getaway with a group to celebrate my birthday, but Carnival cruise line in general left me a little disappointed when compared to other cruise lines I have experienced. I can't say I will jump at the chance to book another carnival cruise. Read Less
Carnival Imagination Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.5 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 4.5 0.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 0.0
Enrichment 3.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0
Rates 3.0 0.0

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