Carnival Vista Cruise Review by ban gratuities
- Sail Date: August 2016
- Destination: Mediterranean
- Cabin Type: Cloud 9 Spa Interior
We recently sailed on the Vista expecting great things from her. Oh dear, how disappointed were we? That was our 13th cruise and, unfortunately, the worst of them all. I should also point out at this point, we were only the tip of the iceberg as far as unhappy passengers were concerned. We spoke with many different passengers who had the opinion as us.
Embarkation was smooth and uneventful (we have experienced far worse), finding our Spa cabin was easy. We boarded at around 12:15 pm and by 1:30 we were making our way up to the buffet for food. Here we experienced our first disappointment. The range of food on offer was not a patch on the Magic the amount of serving points was very small given the size of the ship and number of passengers on board. On the Magic it was almost all self-service, but on the Vista it was all served to you. This greatly slowed down the flow and queues of around 30 to 40 passengers were at each of the four serving points. The range of food offered was very limited (same for the entire 12 day cruise) and repeated throughout the serving positions.
Next disappointment was the evening meal. We had opted for 'My-time dining' which turned out to be 'their-time dining'. Before going to the restaurant on deck 3, we had to queue up on deck 5 at the Java Cafe to be given a ticket for a table! We spent nearly 20 minutes queuing on deck 5 only to be give a pager as there were no tables available and were told it would be 30 a minute wait for a table. 45 minutes later the pager activated and we went down to deck 3 where we queued again for several minutes. Eventually we were shown to a table that was not set. As we walked through the restaurant we saw lots of tables that were empty of people but still full of dirty plates/glasses etc. This explained why there had been such a long wait. There were not enough staff on duty and they simply couldn't cope with demand.
I have a food allergy and on the second evening in the restaurant (at a different table to the previous evening) when my main course arrived, there was a separate small dish of food on the plate. I asked the waiter what was in this and explained about my allergy. The waiter was not able to tell me but said he would ask and let me know. He then duly disappeared, I presumed to ask. Around 10 minutes later we saw him coming toward us. However, he went to the next table to take their orders and disappeared again. I continued to eat until just the the small dish left. Our waiter came to clear our table and saw the small dish left on the plate. He then realised he had not been back to tell me if the food in the dish was safe for me to eat. He apologised and told me that he was too busy to come back and let me know. Now call me picky if you like but, if a customer has a food allergy it should be paramount that the required information is passed on to them so as to keep that person safe.
Bar service around the pool was non existent for the first 4 days, waiter service in the Ocean Plaza was very poor (2 waiters for a room that held around 400 passengers. One evening, after waiting for around 20 minutes for service, a waiter took our order plus the for 2 other tables. The small bar was packed four or five deep with passengers getting their own drinks). After another long wait, the waiter returned with a tray full of drinks including a sweet Moscato white wine for my wife (there was a second glass of white wine on the tray). After placing our drinks on the table he went off looking for the recipients of the 2 other orders he had taken. My wife took a sip of her wine which turned out to be very dry and clearly not what was ordered, my mother-in-law also took a sip. Our waiter was still wandering around with an order of drinks he had not been able find the passengers for. We called him over and informed him that he had given us the wrong wine. His tray still had 2 Budweisers and a glass of white wine on it. He took the wine off our table and replaced it with the one on the tray. Success, my wife had the right drink. The waiter then went off looking for the passengers that had ordered the drinks he had on his tray. He eventually found the passengers and placed their drinks on their table, including the one my wife and mother-in-law had drank from. Absolutely inexcusable service. The whole ship was understaffed.
The theatre has 4 large columns in it that has seats behind them making viewing the infrequent shows very difficult. 0 out of 10 for the clever person that designed the theatre.
Would we recommend the Carnival Vista? Would we sail on her again? The answer to both is a definite no!!!!!
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