This was my first cruise. My husband and I have traveled to Europe, Central America, and Southeast Asia. We love freedom and adventure. But we decided to try a cruise for our honeymoon since we only had a few days off before returning to work after our wedding. Granted, we probably only paid $800 total for our room with a view and 2 days/3 nights of meals and drinking mojitos by the pool. I expected a little more from Carnival. I'm not one of those travelers that is impossible to please...I always try to enjoy myself and make the best of every situation (trust me...after a trip to India, you learn how to roll with it).
Okay, quick review of the main points. 1)CLEANLINESS = water in our sink and shower ran brown for the first 10 minutES and there were black hairs all over the blanket (my husband and I are blonde); 2)FOOD QUALITY = basic casino buffet fare (I was expecting lobster or something unique not grilled tilapia and fried chicken; 3)ATMOSPHERE = the Carnival Inspiration was built in 1996, but I'll be honest..its dated...has an 80s miami vice feel (very much like a flashy casino with blinking neon lights and blasting music in the fine dining room). This cruise seemed more fitting for a family with kids. We were looking for relaxation and romance (dinner for two, laying out by the pool....not being forced to eat dinner with 8 other strangers and literally trying to squeeze in a hot tub with...no exaggeration...30 or 40 kids under 10!!!); 4)CUSTOMER SERVICE = the cabin stewards were very polite, the photographers and pool servers are great, the guest services employee was very helpful...the fine dining room servers were horrible.
On our 3rd night, I asked for a glass chardonnay while pointing to it on the menu. The young female waitress opened a bottle and put it in front of me. I politely told her I did not ask for a bottle, but a glass. She became very rude and argued with me in front of everyone at the table for 15 minutes. I finally stood up and said "Enough...I'm finished talking about this with you...can you get a manager?" Now I'm a very shy person and I avoid conflict at all costs, but this waitress really upset and embarrased me. The head waiter apologized and said we would not be charged for the bottle. I was so irritated by this point and everyone at the table was embarrased for having to witness the argument, we left and had pizza at the buffet in our evening attire.
When we went to guest services to make a formal complaint, we found out not only had the waitress charged us for the $75 bottle of wine that we did not touch, but 2 extra glasses...mind you we did not eat or drink anything in the dining room nor did we sign for any beverages....Therefore, an employee of Carnival must have forged our signatures...which is the same as stealing money from me! The woman at guest services sincerely apologized and removed all charges from the dinner, so they somewhat redeemed themselves. Very stressful experience. The ship is sub-standard, but its a good, cheap trip for a fun, party cruise or family vacation. Just not the cruise for a romantic trip for two!
Cabin M249: Nice big closet, two twin beds pushed together, hard mattress, room has a desk, safe, tiny reading lights above each side of bed, and TV; bathroom was small, but shower big enough for two.