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Carnival Magic Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
1,404 Reviews

Needs major improvements!!!

Carnival Magic Cruise Review by MagicalMartini

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jan 2020
  • Destination: the Eastern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Balcony

Having cruised multiple times on Royal C, Disney, and Celebrity we were accustomed to a certain level of service and quality. We chose this cruise solely on the fact the itinerary worked with everyone in our travel party's schedule.

Embarkment- was easy enough-the employees seemed very stressed and not eager to answer basic questions. We figured things out on our own.

Upon entering the ship we were underwhelmed to say the least. The ship is very run down and in need of a major renovation. The staff were pleasant enough however they paled in comparison to the other cruise lines.

Cabin-We had a balcony cabin. Unfortunately, the balcony door was not sealed properly and made a terrible whistling sound when closed and locked. I called Guest Service's to have fixed multiple times and it never was. Only went on the balcony a few times because it overlooked a hot tub. Not exactly the view we were expecting. The room had ample storage, the bed and pillows were surprisingly comfortable. The cabins are not insulated for noise reduction. You can hear EVERYTHING.

Food-Not a lot of healthy options. The Lido Marketplace never had food labeled correctly which unfortunately caused an allergic reaction with one of the individuals we were traveling with. She had to use her epic pen and was quiet sick. Dinning room menu was blah at best. Guys burger and the pizza place were yummy. The other places, not so much. I actually lost weight on this cruise. That never happens! If you are a coffee drinker, you will be really disappointed. The coffee was disgusting in the restaurants. You definitely have to get coffee on deck 5 at the coffee cafe. This was included in our cheers package. If not, you will pay roughly $5 for specialty coffee. The lines were long but the staff was friendly.

Wifi-DON'T BOTHER!!! Absolutely awful. Nothing more I can say.

Staff-It appeared the staff were over worked and there were not enough employees. They were busting their bums all day long. It took a toll on several of them which translated into poor service and being rude to many guests. My biggest issue is the lack of consistency. I asked a question about disembarkment and shared what I was told with our travel party. 3 other individuals in our group apparently asked the same question and got 3 different answers. We all went to Guest Services to clarify and then got another completely different answer. It was very frustrating. All companies can improve training and communication. Carnival needs to make this a priority.

Cheers Package-Bar and wait staff under staffed. Had to wait consistently 20-25 mins for a drink. Lines long, no consistency the way drinks were made. Some of the staff were wonderful and other definitely did not like their jobs.

Pools and chairs-On sea days plan to get to your seat by 6:30am even though the pool doesn't open until 8:00am. I observed at least 15 different arguments over chairs. People would reserve their chairs at 6:30am with a towel and not show back up until 12:00pm. The Carnival staff was not consistent in tagging chairs for situations like this. This caused a lot of commotion among the guests.

Activities-I always heard Carnival cruises had a lot of fun activities. I was really disappointed because this cruise did not. Several prior Carnival cruisers commented that this ships "Fun Squad" was the worst they had experienced on Carnival. I will say the DJ was FANTASTIC. The High C's and the Shredders were absolutely amazing. Every time they played we were there! We still found plenty to do but there was nothing memorable about the activities.

Therma Spa-In theory it sounded great. Reality it was a HUGE waste of money. The spa staff were more interested in talking to each other than monitoring what was happening in the spa. We went a various days and times and it was always too crowded. It didn't matter if it was 10:00am, 12:00pm, 3:30pm, or 9:00pm. Lots of guests were complaining about the same thing. After day 4 we just gave up going and we bought an 8 day pass. 3 of the heated chairs were broken. When you finally could get a chair, the spa staff were constantly bringing tours in to sell the service, It was not relaxing like we thought it would be. I think with some tweaks, it could be a great service but the way it is run now, save your money.

We loved that Carnival provided blankets for their Dive In movie nights. This was a nice extra that was unexpected but really appreciated.

Even with all of the negatives, we had a good time. We met some lovely people, had a great time on the different islands and soaked up some sun. Will we travel on Carnival again? Not unless they get newer or renovated ships, have consistency with staff training, and improve the food significantly.

MagicalMartini's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
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We did the Fan-ta-sea catamaran and Nevis Beach excursion. The crew was amazing and made the excursion so fun! Next time we are in St. Kitts we will definitely do the excursion again.

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