First and foremost let me say that Carnival has a automatic 18% tipping system built in that you can dispute at guest services but is very hard to do. Here is the issue I have with it. I may be traditional but in my book tips are earned for starters and they belong to the employee who earned them. The next problem I have with the Carnival tip program is that a large part of it goes into a fund to pay for employee medical costs and other things like flights home etc... Thus the employee is maybe getting 10% of that 18% at best. The problem is that the average crew member earns ~$16,500 per year and the CEO earns ~$13.6M per year and you want the passengers tips to cover your employee medical costs!? Really! How about we reduce the CEO pay and put that towards the crew medical benefits? Carnival should be ashamed of themselves for paying such low wages and then pushing medical costs off onto the tips these hard workers earned. Where's my 1099 or receipt for my taxes if my tips are paying your medical benefits? I would rather pay more for a booking and tip in cash for better service and for the employees to have much better working conditions. The reason Carnival is "cheapest" with bookings is because they use cheap labor and earned a revenue of $20.8B in 2019. Let that sink in for a minute folks. RCI and NC pay on average $20,000 per employee (still not the world) and their CEOs earn less and they are still able to earn a nice profit. Why can't Carnival treat the employees better and not use passenger tips to offset employer costs? Frankly it's disgusting and amounts to slave labor if you ask me. Carnival is clearly going the way of airlines in so far as service and fees.Ok now let's get to the cruise.
1. We booked the “Island Hop” excursion in Grand Turk and the description states “Take this opportunity of a lifetime to explore three of the 23 islands that make up the Turks and Caicos Islands. We did NOT go to three or even two islands for that matter rather we went to ONE island only and stayed there for about 45 minutes. We spent 30 minutes snorkeling and we certainly did not relax on a “snowy white beach” dining on delicious foods and an included open Caribbean Bar. These are direct quotes from Carnival website regarding the excursion at $114.99 per person. Frankly the sub-contractor is ripping Carnival and the passengers off as the items advertised were NOT included nor did they ever take place. We paid $230 and basically felt that we had $230 stolen from us.
2. Our stateroom was dirty (we have photos). We immediately brought this to the crew’s attention and the reaction was “oh yeah it’s dirty” and we are “sorry”, but we just didn’t have time to clean but we will clean it when you are out of the room. They did spend 2 hours cleaning the room, but it never should have gotten to this point in the first place.