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My family has been on a couple Carnival cruises before this one. I've broken up the main categories into subsections. Go straight to the bottom for a review of the Cheers drink package. [Ship] Although the Magic is one of Carnival's larger ship sizes many of the places people like to congregate for shows or activities are easily accessible and packed close together so you don't have to travel long distances in order to get where you want. Having a bigger ship also means more fun activity options are available and despite having more people on-board you won't find most locations are overly crowded by any means. [Cabin] The cabin sizes are relatively small, however they have everything you need for sleeping arrangements, decent bathrooms, and good shelf/cupboard space. Realistically, if you're living out your cruise to the max you won't be spending much time in the cabin other than changing/sleeping. I will say that the furniture could use an update. [Dining] Any of the sit down dining options on-board the Magic are delicious. I definitely recommend making reservations for any of the "non-included" dinner options like the steakhouse or the Italian restaurant as they were amazing and well worth it. One thing to note if you ever order steak- request your rarity one step above what you normally would. More than once on our last cruise a medium rare request would come out almost entirely red. Guys Burger Joint and the Pizzeria were very tasty. [Entertainment and Activities] Lots and lots of options here. You would have a difficult time not being able find something interesting going on every hour from the early morning all the way until very late (1-2 AM). The musicians are very talented, the comedians always have the crowds in stitches. Important to note that the pools are generally quite busy. Adults have a pretty easy out by just going to the 21 and over Serenity deck (no pool but a couple good tubs) where its not as bad and nice to meet new people. We didn't have any kids in our party but it was easy to see that there were a number of activities each day catered towards kids and youth that were fun and engaging. [Service] The staff aboard our Carnival Magic cruise were excellent. Always helpful, and very professional. The staff working behind the bars and at eateries were especially amazing when it came to being efficient and polite even during very busy times. We didn't encounter many long lines and when we did, they moved at a good pace. Cleaning services were great as well. When people were done eating and left plates/cutlery out in the main eating areas they were always cleaned up quickly and effectively. Cabin stewards were very kind and did a great job keeping cabins tidy and restocking towels, toilet paper etc. [Ports and Shore Excursions] Our ports were Grand Cayman, Roatan (Mahogany Bay), Belize and Cozumel. Tenders were required for Grand Cayman and Belize. We did excursions on the first two and I heavily recommend the ATV Jungle Tour as it was very fun and the local staff that brought us around were incredible. Belize and Cozumel we just walked around the port areas and did some shopping. The Belize port was not the greatest. It required a tender to reach and it was effectively just a small compound with a lackluster selection of shops. It absorbed more time and energy to visit than it was probably worth rather than just saving for Cozumel the next day. Cozumel was fantastic and had so much more to view and explore. There's generally more than enough time to get done everything you want to do at each port and we found ourselves even returning to the ship a bit early a couple days. [Cheers Drink Package] Yup. This has its own category because it ended up being one of the bigger annoyances of our cruise experience. So a no-frills summary of the drink package goes as follows: for about $56 USD per day for each adult in your room, you get up to 15 alcoholic (unlimited non-alcoholic) drinks per person each day. On average that means having about at least 8-9 drinks a day gets you your moneys worth. Honestly a great deal and as we tend to start our days with Irish coffee and coast through the day on cold beers it was a no-brainer to try it out. In the end we saved a tonne of money by using this package but here is the annoying part. If you do hit 15 drinks on any given day, you aren't allowed to purchase any more alcoholic beverages for the remainder of the day. It makes perfect sense to limit the number of "included" drinks per day, but then not to restrict the customer from wanting to purchase additional drinks for regular charge. Anybody who doesn't get the drink package is allowed to buy any number of alcoholic beverages that they want, for the entirety of every day. Even if it's supposed to be a deterrent for those sharing their included drinks with non-Cheers people it really wouldn't work because the non-Cheers people could just take over and buy drinks afterwards anyways. All it does is inconvenience the groups of people who go all in on the drink package. Overall review of the drink package- definitely worth it if you're a heavy drinker or enjoy sipping on cocktails all day long, but Carnival really has to change their policy on post-limit drink purchasing.

Great experience - but with a few small things here and there.

Carnival Magic Cruise Review by cruisedude97

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: March 2019
  • Destination: Western Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Aft-View Extended Balcony
My family has been on a couple Carnival cruises before this one. I've broken up the main categories into subsections. Go straight to the bottom for a review of the Cheers drink package.

[Ship]

Although the Magic is one of Carnival's larger ship sizes many of the places people like to congregate for shows or activities are easily accessible and packed close together so you don't have to travel long distances in order to get where you want. Having a bigger ship also means more fun activity options are available and despite having more people on-board you won't find most locations are overly crowded by any means.

[Cabin]

The cabin sizes are relatively small, however they have everything you need for sleeping arrangements, decent bathrooms, and good shelf/cupboard space. Realistically, if you're living out your cruise to the max you won't be spending much time in the cabin other than changing/sleeping. I will say that the furniture could use an update.

[Dining]

Any of the sit down dining options on-board the Magic are delicious. I definitely recommend making reservations for any of the "non-included" dinner options like the steakhouse or the Italian restaurant as they were amazing and well worth it. One thing to note if you ever order steak- request your rarity one step above what you normally would. More than once on our last cruise a medium rare request would come out almost entirely red. Guys Burger Joint and the Pizzeria were very tasty.

[Entertainment and Activities]

Lots and lots of options here. You would have a difficult time not being able find something interesting going on every hour from the early morning all the way until very late (1-2 AM). The musicians are very talented, the comedians always have the crowds in stitches. Important to note that the pools are generally quite busy. Adults have a pretty easy out by just going to the 21 and over Serenity deck (no pool but a couple good tubs) where its not as bad and nice to meet new people. We didn't have any kids in our party but it was easy to see that there were a number of activities each day catered towards kids and youth that were fun and engaging.

[Service]

The staff aboard our Carnival Magic cruise were excellent. Always helpful, and very professional. The staff working behind the bars and at eateries were especially amazing when it came to being efficient and polite even during very busy times. We didn't encounter many long lines and when we did, they moved at a good pace. Cleaning services were great as well. When people were done eating and left plates/cutlery out in the main eating areas they were always cleaned up quickly and effectively. Cabin stewards were very kind and did a great job keeping cabins tidy and restocking towels, toilet paper etc.

[Ports and Shore Excursions]

Our ports were Grand Cayman, Roatan (Mahogany Bay), Belize and Cozumel. Tenders were required for Grand Cayman and Belize. We did excursions on the first two and I heavily recommend the ATV Jungle Tour as it was very fun and the local staff that brought us around were incredible. Belize and Cozumel we just walked around the port areas and did some shopping. The Belize port was not the greatest. It required a tender to reach and it was effectively just a small compound with a lackluster selection of shops. It absorbed more time and energy to visit than it was probably worth rather than just saving for Cozumel the next day. Cozumel was fantastic and had so much more to view and explore. There's generally more than enough time to get done everything you want to do at each port and we found ourselves even returning to the ship a bit early a couple days.

[Cheers Drink Package]

Yup. This has its own category because it ended up being one of the bigger annoyances of our cruise experience. So a no-frills summary of the drink package goes as follows: for about $56 USD per day for each adult in your room, you get up to 15 alcoholic (unlimited non-alcoholic) drinks per person each day. On average that means having about at least 8-9 drinks a day gets you your moneys worth. Honestly a great deal and as we tend to start our days with Irish coffee and coast through the day on cold beers it was a no-brainer to try it out. In the end we saved a tonne of money by using this package but here is the annoying part. If you do hit 15 drinks on any given day, you aren't allowed to purchase any more alcoholic beverages for the remainder of the day. It makes perfect sense to limit the number of "included" drinks per day, but then not to restrict the customer from wanting to purchase additional drinks for regular charge. Anybody who doesn't get the drink package is allowed to buy any number of alcoholic beverages that they want, for the entirety of every day. Even if it's supposed to be a deterrent for those sharing their included drinks with non-Cheers people it really wouldn't work because the non-Cheers people could just take over and buy drinks afterwards anyways. All it does is inconvenience the groups of people who go all in on the drink package. Overall review of the drink package- definitely worth it if you're a heavy drinker or enjoy sipping on cocktails all day long, but Carnival really has to change their policy on post-limit drink purchasing.
cruisedude97’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Aft-View Extended Balcony
Cabin 8N 6470
Great cabin with large wrap-around balcony however the balcony floor was dirty a majority of the time because when the decks above were cleaned all the mucky water flowed down onto the balcony and chairs. The aft-view cabins are the only ones with balconies that protrude with no roof. The fridge didn't seem to function at all, as all our water was lukewarm for the entire trip, regardless of being in the room or not. Otherwise the room was awesome (good space, comfy bed, good bathroom).
Deck 9 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins