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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
I'm not sure that I've ever given a negative review of a cruise before but there is a first time for everything ... We live in Charleston so we were very excited to sail out of our home port. Avid cruisers, we've enjoyed ... Read More
I'm not sure that I've ever given a negative review of a cruise before but there is a first time for everything ... We live in Charleston so we were very excited to sail out of our home port. Avid cruisers, we've enjoyed Carnival, RCCL and Disney cruises and have always praised Carnival for its service and food quality, as well as the variety of entertainment. That said, I feel that the service has deteriorated dramatically since our last Carnival cruise. This ship, in particular, was aged badly and there was no sign of the daily maintenance that we were used to seeing in the past. Our room steward was Ok but the room itself looked old and unclean. Our wait staff was below average; one was even visibly annoyed when my nephew and I would order multiple desserts to share. The food wasn't appetizing, except for the Guy's Burger Joint, the taco stand and the deli. One word of caution, Guy's Burger would only give you one onion ring per burger... I've never been denied any food request on a cruise ship until now...Anyone else think that pre-paying tips may be the death of good service on a cruise??? I've also noticed that with the new drink package option, there are no longer nearly as many waiters available pool side. With the exception of one day, we had to walk to the bar for each drink. Given that we have two kids that were playing in the pool or napping; that is way easier said than done. Finally, the ship wasn't family friendly and the kids' club hours were not long enough and it didn't matter because my kids didn't want to go anyway.... Unfortunately, this will probably be our 11th and FINAL Carnival cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
Obviously, we intended to go to Cuba, but...well, that didn't happen. PORTS: This is my #1 purpose for cruising, so it gets a lot of weight on my opinion. After our timely departure from Port Canaveral (smooth, excellent in and ... Read More
Obviously, we intended to go to Cuba, but...well, that didn't happen. PORTS: This is my #1 purpose for cruising, so it gets a lot of weight on my opinion. After our timely departure from Port Canaveral (smooth, excellent in and out), we were scheduled to arrive in Key West 11 hours later at 3p. Once underway, they shifted it back another half-hour. Even though there were no other ships in Key West, we berthed at the inconvenient Outer Mole, so had to deal with the secure shuttle nonsense, which is basically land-tendering. The last embarkation group was allowed off the ship at 5p, but even if you weren't one of those unfortunates, what a complete waste of a port! We then backtracked way back north, arriving at Freeport, Grand Bahama around 11a. That was fine, I guess, but I'd rather get an earlier start in port than that, too. Enjoyed this port, great snorkeling at Dead Man's Reef. Our third and final port was Nassau, where we FINALLY were allowed to get an early start. Unfortunately, this was the worst of the three ports, and by far the worst port I've ever visited on any cruise. Our privately scheduled tour from Cheryl's Taxi never showed up, so we booked a tour on the street. That was a mistake. Nassau's poor reputation as a port is richly deserved. Obviously, there are many considerations in selecting an itinerary, but this one seemed designed to maximize sailing time at the expense of time in port, which is baffling. We could have had a lovely, full day in Grand Bahamas if we'd have stopped there first, and honestly, anywhere else would have been a better port than Nassau. DINING: The Lido buffet was no better or worse than any other ship's. The regular dining room's lunch and dinner was better than Carnival's but not as good as HAL. The Brazilian upcharge restaurant was totally worth it and I'd wholeheartedly recommend. The Le Bistro upcharge restaurant and the upcharge sushi restaurant were nothing special, wouldn't recommend, wouldn't try again. Would have been just as pleased with the fare in the regular dining room. DRINKING: Cocktails, wine and beer are included in the fare, and it was really nice not to have to run that tab. The liquor selection was quite good, and cocktails were generally well-mixed (I like 'em strong), but service could be hit-or-miss. ENTERTAINMENT: Awful. I love playing trivia and went to two trivia things which were both just...bleak. Karaoke was no better. Gave up on the comedy show after 10-15 minutes. Walked through a lounge where the "entertainment" was uncomfortably homophobic. Seriously? We're still doing this? Ugh. The cruise director was very difficult to understand over the ship's intercom system, to the extent that some of our party didn't know the muster drill was even underway until I telephoned them. They didn't sound the actual alarm until everyone had been standing in the assembly stations for 15 minutes or so. POOL: The pool is both saltwater and highly chlorinated and will absolutely melt your eyeballs right out of your head if you open up underwater. If anything on that ship deserves a cautionary sign, it's that pool. They never put deckchairs on the upper back deck away from the pool noise, which sucks, because that's the only place I actually wanted to sit on the deck because they played music at unendurably loud levels near the pool. I really hate listening to other people's music. STAFF: With a few conspicuous exceptions, the Sun's staff seemed very burnt-out. It's self-evident NCL needs to improve working conditions for its onboard staff. Everyone worked diligently, they all just seemed very exhausted. People need real time off. Period. CONCLUSION: I do sympathize with all the cruise lines that had to hastily change their itineraries, but this itinerary was just rubbish. Key West is ruined by a very late arrival and terribly inconvenient pier, Nassau is basically an enormous souvenir shop full of hustlers. A half-day at the lovely Grand Bahama Island just can't make up for that. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
We selected this cruise last minute as a birthday celebration and booked it only a few weeks before departure. We booked a Grand Suite and we really enjoyed all the extra space in the cabin. However, there are really no perks to ... Read More
We selected this cruise last minute as a birthday celebration and booked it only a few weeks before departure. We booked a Grand Suite and we really enjoyed all the extra space in the cabin. However, there are really no perks to getting a suite on this ship other than a few free bottles of water and priority check in. Embarkation is a breeze with priority check in. We went through security and right onto the ship. Our keys were waiting for us in the cabin. When did turn down service start on the 2nd night of the cruise? One of the biggest problems on this ship is muster drill. They are still lining you up outside in the rain by the lifeboats for 40 minutes. Being unable to manage stairs, we went down early to avoid the mandatory stair trip. So that added even more time to the lengthy stand against the wall with people 6 deep. People that would not shut up long enough to listen to the drill and leaders that did absolutely nothing to control these people. This experience had anxiety attack written all over it. Next we have the unending PA announcements at all hours of the day and night. This is absolutely ridiculous when you are trying to sleep and you have to hear about some activity that you "must" attend every 20 minutes. Or, the employee drills, is there a reason I need to hear this alarm in my room when I'm trying to sleep? Then we have the paper thin walls so that you can hear the toilet flush in the next cabin, or the loads of rude passengers running up and down the hallways and sometimes knocking on your door. Or blocking the hallways with their "get togethers" and impromptu conversations. There is a level of passenger on this ship that is not the norm of cruise passengers and I believe that is due to the price of the cruise and the locale. So, if you are used to a more reserved crowd that knows social etiquette, this is NOT the ship for you. I got to the point where I just didn't want to leave the cabin. On the food, well let's just say this, the grilled cheese on the room service menu is amazing! So, that's not saying much. The lines in the buffet were unending and poorly organized. They need more stations with the same food so that the lines are manageable. I should not have to wait 45 minutes for my runny fake scrambled eggs! They dole out the bacon 2 strips at a time and you have to wait in that line to get it. Or you can be like many passengers that just cut the line. In fact, I was getting my ice water and just about to put my glass on the ice dispenser when a woman jammed her cup in front of mine and took ice. The crowd on the ship reminded me of a frat house party and that is not limited to a certain group. 80% of the ship was at the party! And there was no limit to the amount of poorly dressed people showing all parts of their bodies with pride! The Diamond Steakhouse was nice, but the steaks are poorly seasoned and the lobster, while tasty is small. The Art at the Table dessert was very entertaining and beautiful. Service was also very good here. The Golden Olympian dining room had subpar cold food and the seating was awful. Asking for a table for 2 was futile as the next table for 2 was 6 inches away and so on. The internet on this ship is spotty and you have to reconnect often. Many websites are completely blocked, so be careful which plan you select. I did enjoy having the Carnival Hub on my phone so I always had deck plans and activity lists available to me. If you are used to sailing with more reserved passengers where you get a certain level of service (Celebrity), then this is not the ship for you! I had a run in with a store clerk where the sign on the display read 30% off, however the piece that I selected on that same display was only 10% off. I got nowhere with that person explaining you can't advertise 30% off and then pick and choose which items will be covered unless you list that it's 30% of on select items. The 2 comedians in the Punchliner Club were awesome and we'll be looking them up on YouTube, HBO etc. We saw them all three nights on the ship and each night was different material both family and adult shows. The Rock shows was embarrassingly bad with off key singing, old music and dancing that needs to be updated with more modern moves. As always, waiting for elevators is a challenge and when the door opens you have about 5 seconds to get in or out, because the doors close immediately. Not an exaggeration. Timing issues need to be resolved here so that there are no injuries. Once again, the empty elevator not stopping for you remains a mystery! Disembarkation was a breeze when you have all carry on luggage. We walked off the ship at 7am and went through customs and on to the car in about 15-20 minutes. There is a lot of walking so that would be most of the time. For a 3 night cruise, it's amazing how few people have carry on luggage, so crowds were not an issue. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
The service was awful the ship had an AWFUL smell. Only had lemonade, tea, & water to drink. The lemonade & tea taste like water. The food options was very slim, only one restaurant was open 24 hours which is unheard of on a cruise ... Read More
The service was awful the ship had an AWFUL smell. Only had lemonade, tea, & water to drink. The lemonade & tea taste like water. The food options was very slim, only one restaurant was open 24 hours which is unheard of on a cruise ship. Most crew members was very rude couldn’t speak English the drinks were watered down. The crew half way clean my cabin. The tables in the restaurants where half way cleaned. This was my first and last time cruising with Liberty. The floors was nasty went to lunch and they still had food from breakfast on the floor. The ice machines were out most of the cruise. It was just an awful experience. Being this was my husband first time cruising, awful first impression. The only thing we enjoyed was the club, the deck party, and getting off the ship to tour Bahamas. Other than that it was an awful experience. Not worth my money at all. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
I cruised with a group for a 60th birthday. We had originally booked a 7 day cruise with a different cruise line but the ship needed to be dry docked and they canceled our cruise two weeks before we were set to sail. The Sun had ... Read More
I cruised with a group for a 60th birthday. We had originally booked a 7 day cruise with a different cruise line but the ship needed to be dry docked and they canceled our cruise two weeks before we were set to sail. The Sun had availability so we booked the 5 day cruise for the same week as the original cruise. I saw this as a great opportunity to try a different cruise line and I was excited to see what Norwegian was all about. The best part of the cruise was the ease of getting on the ship day 1 and off the ship day 5. The food in the buffet areas was okay. The options of types of food was slim and was the same everyday. The hamburger patties were extremely greasy and the pizza was okay at best. The rooms were nice but the bathrooms were definitely smaller than the bathrooms on other cruise ships I have been on. I did enjoy all the shelves they provided in the room and bathroom to put stuff on. After discussing my experience with the others in my group, some of them got towel animals, my room did not (we all had balcony rooms). It's not that I needed the towel animals, but the quality of room service was obviously not consistent across the ship. There weren't many activities to participate in because you are at port every day and most areas of the ship shut down early every night. The staff picked up all the chairs on the Lido Deck so you couldn't even sit outside at night and enjoy the scenery on that deck. You could however go to the back of the ship and sit at tables outside but since that is the only place, finding a table and chairs is difficult because everyone else is there.There is only one lounge to just sit in and enjoy. Again, every thing shuts down early in the evening. The open bar...the consistency of the service you receive at the different bars is upsetting. I ordered a Michelada and I never knew what I was actually going to get. I also didn't know if I would have to MAKE MY OWN DRINK or not. I had one bar tender literally pour more than half a glass of tomato juice and hand me a beer (on the first day). I had another bar tender pour half a glass of Bloody Mary mix (which is fine) and hand me a beer (again, on the first day). I asked if I may have the other ingredients put in the drink and he gave me the ingredients to do it myself. WHAT?! I have to do their job for them?! I must say, I did find one or two bar tenders who did a great job at making my drink and I made sure to go back to those bar tenders for the rest of my trip. The one time I ordered a regular cocktail, there was so much alcohol in the drink that it wasn't enjoyable. And the amount of under-aged drinking that was on that ship was concerning. I never saw anyone ask to see an ID and since it is an open bar, scanning your room key was not needed. I can understand if an adult orders the drink and then gives it to their child, but to see an obvious under-aged person walk up to the bar and get a cocktail is an unnecessary liability on Norwegian's part. Dinner in the dining room was decent. The majority of the food was the same throughout the week. Something I am just not used to from previous cruises. However, the Brazilian Steakhouse was delicious! The service was great as well. Key West was fun as always. Nassau's main land was miserable because of the locals but Blue Lagoon island was fantastic. The island is a safe haven (conservation) for all things natural which is great. The excursion staff was fun and super nice and the equipment (chairs, segways, umbrellas, etc.) was very well taken care of. Grand Stirrup Cay was nice, nothing special. In both Blue Lagoon and Grand Stirrup Cay the food was extremely similar to what they served on the ship which was disappointing. The cruise director was not very good compared to what I am used to. You didn't see him very often, maybe because of the lack of activities. The communication regarding getting off the ship at Grand Stirrup Cay was structured and nice. There was no communication at the other locations at all regarding getting off the ship. We only realized we could get off when we looked down off the ship and saw others getting off. Lastly, while most of the staff was polite, the staff never took the time to create a relationship with us. Again, from past experiences on a different cruise line, the room staff, a few bar tenders, and the dining staff all new our names and certain aspects about my roommate and I. We just didn't have that on the Sun. Overall, I knew the cruise would be different but I was not expecting the quality to be as different as it was. While there were some good aspects of the experience, it was not enough to want to cruise with Norwegian again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
Our family cruise to the Bahamas Pros...The entertainment, staff, activities, Adam (cruise director), and Guys Burger was good. Cons..the cabin was horrible! When we first walked into the cabin it was sticky stuff on the carpet. We were ... Read More
Our family cruise to the Bahamas Pros...The entertainment, staff, activities, Adam (cruise director), and Guys Burger was good. Cons..the cabin was horrible! When we first walked into the cabin it was sticky stuff on the carpet. We were told by housekeeping that he tried to clean it but it wouldn’t come clean. We were told that we would have a king size bed and a rollout bed but instead of getting a rollout bed we got a metal cot that sat on that nasty floor! And to top it off it was hot in our cabin. Our daughter have asthma and she was very uncomfortable. We complained to guest services multiple times and they offered us a box fan. We were told by guest services that 70 degrees was standard for the room temperature but our room temperature was ranging from 72-75. It felt better in the hallway than it did in our cabin. Our daughter have asthma and she was very uncomfortable. Once we arrived home we called carnival and customer services was saying that 75 degrees is standard for the cabin temperature. I think they could have been a lot more understanding. This will definitely be my last time cruising with Carnival. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
I purchased directly through the cruise line and felt that I saved a few dollars and received a better package than going through groupon. After reading other reviews, I had low expectations before boarding. I brought a power strip to ... Read More
I purchased directly through the cruise line and felt that I saved a few dollars and received a better package than going through groupon. After reading other reviews, I had low expectations before boarding. I brought a power strip to overcome the one plug available in the room, a yeti cup since the cups in the buffet were small, and a white noise machine - all were needed and useful and I recommend bringing if you decide to take this cruise. We have US passports and purchased the Express Pass for $49. I felt the Express Pass was a waste of money, I will go into detail below. We arrived at the port around 11 am. Valet was efficient, we received our parking slip and were sent to have our luggage tagged. We were approached about adding a concierge package, we declined. We were then sent inside to go through security, quicker than airport security. Once through, you drop your checked luggage down a long hallway and then head upstairs to begin the check in process. Upstairs, there were few people in line, we only had a moment wait before being helped (no need for the express pass). From research, I knew about needing a card on file and the $100 hold. I had prefilled the form and had it ready for checkin. After receiving our cruise cards, we saw all the "extras" available for purchase. We had booked our excursion in advance over the phone. We knew in what we wanted, but were confused on where exactly to go. We figured it out and was able to book a fine dining experience at the Rock Grille (highly recommend!). The employee kept trying to upsell us to a package and push us to eat at the Admiralty Club instead. We declined and headed to purchase a soda package. We had ten free drink coupons through our package, yet the next employee did try to sell us another, we said we just wanted one soda package. We signed a form, received a copy, and got our soda cup. After a twenty minute wait, where there were cookies and lemonade available, we were able to line up for boarding. An announcement was made that the buffet would open at 12 PM on deck 10 and rooms would be ready at 1. The room key is in the cabin door. Boarding was efficient, swipe your cruise card, security checks your picture and you're on. We went straight to the buffet, but were led to a table by the pool area. We were confused, we wanted to eat but there were others sitting at these tables. Decline to sit, this was an upsell to get you to buy a $17 alcoholic drink cup. I was close, since the drinks were twice the size of the ones you get at the bars, but with the drink coupons you still have to pay $3 per drink. With this info, I declined. We then headed to the buffet and were surprised at the good quality of the food. There were employees walking around attempting to sell the $17 cups. With my soda cup, I was unclear where to receive soda - you have to go to a bar for soda. There's one in the back of the buffet. All the bartenders I went to were nice and happy to fill the cup. After lunch, we explored the ship and relaxed for sometime in one of the cabanas on deck 12. They made the announcement at 1 that rooms were ready, we headed to our room on the 7th floor. The whole ship was clean, the room included. It was an oceanview, with a nice, large window. There were two small beds pushed together to make a queen bed, the bed was very comfortable. Our housekeeper checked in on us, made sure we had what we needed and when I asked about our excursion passes, he brought them directly to me. With the express pass, we were supposed to have luggage priority, many people on our hallway had their bags before us and the two bags came at different times (another reason not to bother with the extra expense). While on board, we found there weren't many activities that we enjoyed. We don't care for clubs or dance contests and the included entertainment was ... not good. Think a poor high school musical. We actually walked out. Dinner at the Rock Grille was amazing. It was hard to find, they actually convert one of the sides of the pool deck 10 midship into the restaurant. It was warm, but they had fans blowing. It was well worth the $39 pp upcharge. The next morning brought rain as we arrived in Freeport. We went to the meeting area for our jeep excursion, received our wristbands, and waited. After a while, we were informed our excursion had been canceled due to the weather and we were sent to deck 5 to receive a refund and book another. We were not offered any specials (though they were being offered pre-boarding as a b1g1 free) even though I asked. We were only offered 1 excursion, the best of the Bahamas city tour and beach visit. The couples next to us were offered different ones and received 20% off, so I'm not sure why. The tour was a charter bus, with a funny guide and driver. The guide had poor time management skills. We had to cut many stops short because of this. Freeport is not nice, many run down buildings. We ended up at a beach owned by the tour company, included lunch was nice and the coconut drinks ($16 each) were amazing. We ate at Stellar Prime this night, which is challenging to find. We were seated with three other couples at an eight top. The food was just ok. Once we arrived back to WPB, we went to the express disembarking area at 830am, we lined up and went right through with our passports (another reason to not need the Express Pass). Total time from line to car was less than 20 minutes. This ship can go 19 knots, meaning at full speed the trip to Freeport should take less than four hours. This company takes 14 hours, with the only reason is to get you to spend more money on board. The boat must stop many times during the night. It began to list the morning we were arriving in Freeport, not sure if this is usual. The first night I continued to hear a loud thud and what sounded like someone running down the hallway (there wasn't anyone out there). I'm not sure what this was, it could be heard over my white noise machine and only happened between 1am and 5am the first night. Also, the next morning we heard maintenance knocking on doors, we looked out to see that the hallway had standing water about 4 doors down. This didn't impact us. Another reviewer discussed the clientele on the ship. With this price point, the Dollar General crowd is a good description. The ships elevators are small and slow, we opted to take the stairs rather than wait. My fitbit stated I went up 25 flights of stairs each day of the trip. We did not use the pools or hot tub, they were always full of too many people in the small spaces. I checked my final bill, it was correct at $117, the hold my credit card account was $195 instead of $100. A side note about the valet, I drive a sports car and have a driving app through onstar on my phone. Once on board, I pulled up my app and discovered the valet took my car for a joy ride, with many hard accelerations and hard braking. I had to disembark and finally spoke to the COO of the port who assured me they would investigate and the valet would be fired. If you have a nicer car, take precautions in advance or explore other transportation options. Overall, I would not take this cruise again. It met my low expectations, but did not exceed them. The only positive I have was eating at the Rock Grille. There are other options in Florida to enjoy similar things without the cost or clientele, especially in the keys. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose the port of Charleston because we did not want to fly to Florida, the cost of the flight for 2 adults and 2 children would have been almost as much as the price of the cruise. So we drove 8 hours to the port. Easy approach to ... Read More
We chose the port of Charleston because we did not want to fly to Florida, the cost of the flight for 2 adults and 2 children would have been almost as much as the price of the cruise. So we drove 8 hours to the port. Easy approach to the port, fast parking, great service at the port of Charleston. Getting on the boat, was a breeze. We had purchased "faster to the fun" and it got us on the boat quickly. This was the only time "faster to the fun" was of any help. First night on the boat, it became apparent that Carnival had packed as many people on-board as possible. It was very VERY crowded. We soon learned that there was going to be long lines for everything. The pool was overfilled with children, the hot tubs on the lido deck were full of children splashing and being loud. Parents let their children run wild with little to no supervision. Many children were darting through the crowds and on the interior walkways of the ship bumping into people and being very loud late into the night. There was a constant sewer smell around deck 4 the entire time we were on the ship. Anytime you went that direction, you caught the smell and was kinda gross. Camp Ocean was OK for the kids, they did complain that one of the staff were rude to them while there and it took some convincing for them to want to go back. Room Steward was amazing gentleman that took very good care of us our entire cruise. He cleaned the room twice a day, made towel animals for the kids, kept our ice bucket full at all times and took the time to learn our names and spoke to us at every opportunity. We tipped him in cash very well. $20/ $30/ $40 at a time. Tipping- We opted to tip in cash and NOT pre-pay or gratuity. So we took a large stack of $5 and $1 bills for tipping (more than a few hundred dollars). We passed out tips to almost every employee we had any encounter with. We were very generous with our tipping. On the third morning of the cruise, I used the Carnival Hub app to check our account activity and found that we had been charged $280 for gratuity. I immediately went to guest services and had them remove the charge and explained that there was no mention prior to booking of an automatic gratuity, only the option to pre-pay gratuity. Which we opted to tip cash (anyone that has been in the service industry knows that cash in hand is better than a charged tip). Faster to the fun- NOT WORTH IT. Only helps when initially getting onto the boat on the first day at port. Excursions- Stingray adventure at Half Moon Cay was enjoyable. Instructions on where to be at what time, were horrible. We had no indication on where to check in. We walked almost all the way to the building with the stingrays only to be told that we need to sign in at the front of the island and ride the tram to the stingray adventure location. My wife and two girls had a 12:30 appointment, and got bumped back because it was overbooked. Then they got left at the stingray adventure with no tram available and were forced with about 20 others to walk all the way back. The empty tram passed them along the route and did not even stop to offer a ride. Balmoral Island Dolphin swim- 9:30 meeting time at the Nassau port, got off the boat nice and early and were basically first in line. Once the excursion workers arrived, it was apparent their attitude towards us was poor at best. Not helpful, not caring. It seemed like since they already had our money, that we were stuck and along for the ride. We were escorted to a small boat, asked a few questions to the un-attentive worker that was on her phone from the moment I first saw her. She acted very bothered that we spoke to her. They counted out 110 passengers for the ferry to Balmoral Island. Then walked us to the boat, then a second group joined our group which made us over capacity. We missed the first boat by 5 people and were left on the dock with no instruction, to wait and bake in the heat for an hour before another boat arrived. Its now 10:30 and we have been off the ship to two hours waiting in the sun and just now getting onto a ferry. Arrived at the island and had to wait in another line to sign a waiver for the dolphin swim. Was given a time slot of 12:45. So our 9:30 turned into 12:45. Very misleading. Waited around on the island, swam in ocean, at lunch ($22 for 1 serving of chicken tenders that came in a styrofoam "to-go" box similar to fast food). We split it among the 4 of us to hold us over till we got back to the ship. THE DOLPHINS WERE AWESOME! The two trainers, not sure of their names were great! They had obviously paid attention to their previous customers needs and were very attentive and made the dolphin swim a complete blast. Cannot say enough about those two guys, they were professional and courteous and did their jobs well. Lockers were provided at the building for the dolphin swim, but there were only 18 available for around 45 people. We had to leave all of our belongings out in the open (passports, cash, phones etc.) Thankfully, everything was left untouched. We finally made it back to the docks around 3:15pm, and needed to be back on the ship by 4:30. We were left with very little time to experience Nassau, but it honestly only took a few moments to realize what a trash hole this place was. There were multiple instances of police sirens that should have been an indicator before we ever left the cruise boat. Nearly every person was rude, pushy and aggressive towards us. The streets are dirty, not maintained at all and there are abandoned buildings and boats littered about. For a port that almost 100% is reliant upon tourism, they really do nothing to keep the place maintained. One man photo-bombed a picture I took of my daughter and then tried to demand I give him money. We were very disappointed that our 9:30am excursion was so misleading and took up the entire day. Carnival really needs to work on their crowd control and better organization with these excursions to increase everyone's enjoyment. We went back to the ship, at at Guy Fieri burger joint, which we were starving and the burgers were absolutely amazing! If you have read this far, I hope this review gives an accurate portrayal of what you can expect. I should have been more prepared for the crowds and the money gouging and the rudeness of the Nassau citizens. In summary, the cruize staff were absolutely amazing we were very well taken care of. The food was awesome. The drinks were weak, but we were not there to get drunk, so it was ok. Nassau citizens and excursion staff were absolutely horrible. Cruise director Adam was incredible. Every show we went to was excellent, just be prepared to wait in long lines for everything. Be prepared to pay 18% gratuity on every purchase, and then be charged $70 per person gratuity on top of that with no warning. Think of it like going to the shopping mall on black friday, once everyone is jammed inside, they lock the doors, triple the price on everything, crank up the heat and start serving alcohol for $15 a drink while everyone lets their kids run absolutely wild. If you can handle that, you will have fun. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
So to start this review it must be known that this was my 13th cruise and 3rd on Carnival. I selected Ecstasy because it fit my travel time and location. Embarkation and debarkation was a breeze. That was very good. The ship is outdated ... Read More
So to start this review it must be known that this was my 13th cruise and 3rd on Carnival. I selected Ecstasy because it fit my travel time and location. Embarkation and debarkation was a breeze. That was very good. The ship is outdated which I did not care about. It was the 1st cruise for my adult kids so they didn’t have anything to compare it to. Entertainment was ok. No huge complaint there. Service was good. Everyone nice. My only major complaint was the food. It was bad. I like food more on the bland side but this was bad. No flavor. A lot of food wasn’t warm. We only ate in the dining room once. Meat was dry and lacked flavor. Our only saving grace was the deli. Kids liked the pizza ok. I did somewhat enjoy the lunch tacos. Guys burgers were extremely greasy. I will not sail on Ecstasy ever again. People warned me. They were right. Save your money. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
So first of all - I thought I had zero expectations. I booked Norwegian Sun for the open bar but I quickly realized that got old quick. This was my partner and my first getaway after having our child and our overall experience was just ... Read More
So first of all - I thought I had zero expectations. I booked Norwegian Sun for the open bar but I quickly realized that got old quick. This was my partner and my first getaway after having our child and our overall experience was just okay. Here are my thoughts: Check in and getting on board was super easy so definitely a positive. Once we got on, we were able to go explore and get a drink and lunch. We quickly realized that they weren't a lot of entertainment for us (since we aren't dancers/clubby people) The one thing we were looking forward to was the comedy show, however it was scheduled the 2nd night during dinner time and our dinner took WAY too long at Seven Seas so we missed that. Our 3rd night, we saw it back again at 10:30pm the final night, however our specialty dinner didn't get done till 10:45pm so we missed the beginning. We were disappointed with the food on the ship. Buffet dinner was not appetizing and dessert kept running out. Sports bar - small menu it took forever to get the food or they forget it and then it is SUPER COLD by the time you receive it. Evening dinner was great and the hibachi was just average. We definitely had better hibachi for the same price. We noticed a handful of leaks on the ship (one at the sports bar and the other on deck 12) which made the carpet super wet and a total hazard. Our stateroom (picture window) was small but cozy. However our drain in our shower was not working which resulted to over spilling into the floor of the bathroom which was so annoying!! Great Stirrup - one of the islands I was so looking forward to visiting but as soon as we got there - boy it STUNK! It was so smelly from the pigs it was unbearable. As soon as I thought I got used to it - BAM you'd smell pig poop again. Was horrible. Bartenders were not that great and I felt they were just throwing liquor in a cup to get people to go away. A lot of the bartenders were annoyed by Day 2 on the ship. There was snarky comments that they were giving the guests. I don't blame them but you have an open bar that is what you get. I don't feel anything was communicated on how to leave - we couldn't hear the cruise director over the intercom because everything sounded muffled. If we didn't check our app we wouldn't have known what to do. I sprained my ankle on the stairs and went to the medical center to ask if they have a wrap they said they are closed and to come back in 6 hours after we depart or they'd have to charge me $75 for an emergency visit. I was a little pissed off - came back and she literally just got up and got me an ace bandage - I am like seriously?? You could have done this earlier. Also if you have your period, you have to go every where looking for tampons since the gift store doesn't open until the ship is moving. Frustrating. On the last night, in the middle of the night, our cabin started reeking of the smell of poop. It was so disgusting. Finally, disembark day - apparently my partner had been flagged to be stopped for a "random check." It was absolutely embarrassing on how they handled it and thought we were criminals getting escorted off the ship. We have traveled many times but that has never happened. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
The A/c and toilet did not work in my room and several other peoples rooms on my floor for over a day. The Guest Services were not very helpful. The food and beverages were good and their staff was excellent. The ship did not seem to ... Read More
The A/c and toilet did not work in my room and several other peoples rooms on my floor for over a day. The Guest Services were not very helpful. The food and beverages were good and their staff was excellent. The ship did not seem to have their act together in that lots of things were advertised that did not occur or they were listed on a wrong day. The entertainment was excellent. The piano player was awesome. They sprayed your hands with sanitizer every time you entered an area with food. The free drinks added to the value of the cruise and the drinks were well made and readily available. The excursions were cheaper if you did not purchase them through the cruise. They have things marked down in the gift shop like you are getting a deal on jewelry or the artwork but when you check the internet it is still way overpriced. I was on this same ship one year prior and everything was excellent. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise because of location convenience for a bachelorette party. Pros: James was amazing and went above and beyond to help accommodate our bachelorette party. Joey and his team were a great steward and attentive to our ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of location convenience for a bachelorette party. Pros: James was amazing and went above and beyond to help accommodate our bachelorette party. Joey and his team were a great steward and attentive to our needs. The spa services were incredible and exceeded my expectations. Kristel and Suba were great servers! Roger makes the best mojitos! Cons: guest services needs improvement. Upon our arrival, the room we were booked in was not up to our expectations (do not book 4 adults in one room). I went to guest services to ask if there was another room available so we could split our party up and that i was willing to pay anything. I was told the cruise ship was sold out, but when another group in our party had a problem with a bed, they were put in another room. This leads me to believe Carnival lied to me about being sold out and lost out on the chance to increase their revenue. Dinner reservations were incorrect 2 of the three nights and the staff was difficult to work with to accommodate our party. Overall, most staff was great but I will never be returning to a carnival cruise again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
I chose this cruise as a birthday celebration. I have cruised several times before with 2 different cruise lines most often I cruise with carnival. I thought trying Norwegian would be an upgrade but it was the opposite. The first issue I ... Read More
I chose this cruise as a birthday celebration. I have cruised several times before with 2 different cruise lines most often I cruise with carnival. I thought trying Norwegian would be an upgrade but it was the opposite. The first issue I had was a non functional AC in the room. I called maintenance around 10:30 pm and no one showed up by midnight so I called again. They showed up at 2:30 am and did not fix the issue so I had to msg there and sweat through the night. The next afternoon someone came again and made it slightly cooler but still not great. From there all of dining experiences were sub par with extremely long lines and 1.5 hours to get through any dining experience in the dining rooms including breakfast. The drinks and entertainment were great especially the comedian Mike Paramore but there were not as many options as I expected (only one loud but good production show and cramped games in the bliss lounge ). One of the most frustrating experiences was visiting the private island. The tender boats required to get to the island took forever due to long lines and the actual travel time. I decided to get an excursion(which is supposed to let you on the islands sooner but this was not true) to Jet Ski and was looking good forward to lunch on the island afterward. To my surprise they only served food for 2.5 hours on then Island and due to the time of the excursion and a delay getting on the island I had no choice but to return to the ship for lunch because all the food options closed at 2:00pm despite the fact that the last tender back was not until 4:30 . This situation left me with no way to enjoy the rest of the island due to the time for security and tendering on and off the ship. This was extremely disappointing and seemed like a public safety issue considering how alcohol was served nearly the entire time but food was only available for 2.5 of the 6 hours the island was open. I am not sure why they believe this is okay but to me and many people trying to scrounge for food this was unacceptable. My complaints about this once I got back on this ship fell on deaf ears and even the director of food on the ship could not explain the logic of the time frame. If all I wanted to do was be drunk on this cruise it would have been great but I was looking to eat great food enjoy a full day on a private island and relax. I will not be cruising with this ship every again and I doubt I will be willing to risk wasting my money on this cruise line again. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Let’s start with embankment; the computers were down and it took 4 hours of standing in line before we could board. I work in customer service so in these situations I try and be patient, but the staff relayed ZERO information to anyone ... Read More
Let’s start with embankment; the computers were down and it took 4 hours of standing in line before we could board. I work in customer service so in these situations I try and be patient, but the staff relayed ZERO information to anyone as to what is happening, other than “You cannot leave this building”! When the computers came back online the staff did not try to maintain any lines so it was a frenzy of angry people trying to rush to make it to get on board. Strike one for Norwegians organizational skills. Now let’s get on board, as we finally make it on we are STARVING; after all we’ve been on lock down in embankment for at least 4 hours. So we make our way up to the buffet, grab a plate of food and sit down. My party I’m with all get about 3 bites of food on us before a staff member comes over and rudely announces “You cannot be eating right now, stop what you are doing immediately and go to your muster station.” Then proceeds to stare at us until we clear out, but not before making us chug our sodas because they “Cannot go with you, leave them and go!!” Now I understand the importance of a Muster drill, but let’s take into account that we were STILL BOARDING. As I hungrily make my way to the muster station (Station D, so I can see people STILL BOARDING while the drill is happening!) Never at any point do I have any staff member instruct me who to pay attention to, or attempt to lead our group in any kind of example on life vests. I still do not know where I should have gone or what I should have done had something happened to our ship. Now after all that I’m pretty on edge, and a bit tired so I head to my stateroom fling open the door and see two twin beds, even though I had requested it be converted to a queen. No big deal right? This should be an easy fix! I pop my head out into the hallway and see a young woman handling luggage; now as a first time cruiser I do not know if she is my steward or not so I simply ask “Excuse me ma’am, but could you tell me who to talk to about getting my beds fixed? I’m supposed to have a queen.” To which I get the retort, “I don’t know, go ask your stewardess or something!” Horrified by the attitude I’ve been given I decide to call guest services to see if they can help me. After five minutes on hold I relay my request for my bed to be fixed, am assured it will be in under an hour and I head to the bar. Now let’s fast forward a bit to 10pm when I am standing at guest services for what is now the 6th time of requesting help on this. It took 6 trips or calls to guest services and 5 hours to get my twin beds converted to a queen. Strike 2 for Norwegians organizational skills. The next day we arrive in Key West and for the first time there is some semblance of organization as we walk right off the ship. Had a wonderful afternoon in key west until we take the trolley back and after they drop us off there isn’t a single staff member in sight. There just 30ish of us standing there outside a gate trying to figure out what to do, a more experienced cruiser moves the gate and leads us all to the embarkment point. Strike three for Norwegians organizational. At this point in the chaos the ENTIRE group of thirty people begin to mock the “organization” of Norwegian as a whole because it has been such a JOKE so far along. Now let’s talk about the photographers; I sincerely wish I had gotten the name of the man who took our family photos but this boy needs FIRED. Every picture taken he posed us so much the end shots made us look like an awkward robot family. Then when my parents stepped aside so my wife and I could get some couple shots he had us pose in these weird back to back thing that made us look like awkward siblings and not a lesbian couple. We tried to get into a more ‘romantic’ pose and I kissed her cheek, only to have him move us and go back to the friend zone. This man clearly had no idea what to do with a lesbian couple, and the photos were proof. (We bought NONE taken by him by the way) We had to go a different night and wait in a line for a different photographer just to get a couple decent shots. Oh and while we’re on the subject we were NEVER offered embarkment photos. My entire family wore matching outfits specifically for the occasion, and they never brought the screen with the ship on it out, once boarded and had removed it from port before it was our time to embark. The rest of the cruise I have no major complaints for other than being disappointed that for my first cruise ever I never once got to experience a towel animal. That has always in my mind been a trademark of the cruising industry and it was disappointing to not have it offered to us. In the end this cruise has taught me that cruising can be a delightful and laid back way to enjoy your vacation, but NEVER in my life will I return to Norwegian. There are too many options out there for me to ever return to a company with so little organizational skills, and the inability to speak to a guest politely. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise because of the original itinerary of Havana, Cuba which was canceled two weeks ago due to the Trump Administration. Since NCL offered to refund us for half the cruise & gave us 50% off on a future cruise, we went ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the original itinerary of Havana, Cuba which was canceled two weeks ago due to the Trump Administration. Since NCL offered to refund us for half the cruise & gave us 50% off on a future cruise, we went ahead with our plans. We weren’t that thrilled with the new ports added, Freeport& Nassau, but decided to go with it. The good things: 1. Our cabin steward, Joseph, was very good, He kept our room spotless and made sure we had clean towels and ice everyday. 2. The waiters and waitresses were friendly and accommodating. Also the manager of the Four Seasons Dining Room, Ben, was superb & checked on us every evening. 3. The food in the dining rooms were good, overall. 4. The comedian and the “Rock You Tonight” entertainment staff were really good. The bad things: 1. The buffet was horrible. It even smelled bad in there. It was a free for all with folks shoving each other, kids everywhere. The food was awful & the layout of the buffet was terrible. After one lunch there, we never returned. 2. Not enough to do on the ship. Sometimes we were really bored. It was pretty disappointing. 3. I was charged for items taken from the mini bar. Apparently, the day before we left, someone from the staff comes in and locks the mini bar & takes the bottled water that can be purchased. They charged us for water that we didn’t open or drink. After complaining twice a guest services, they removed the charge. 4. Computer system failed at check in which delayed boarding the ship 3 hours. Long lines of hungry unhappy passengers....not a good way to start the cruise. 5. Really poor tv channel choices. 6. Shopping on the ship was not really good. We had $150 shipboard credit & really had difficulty finding things we wanted to purchase. This was only our third cruise, but the worst by far. The other two were on Royal Caribbean. I would say we weren’t that impressed by NCL. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
So we definitely did not choose a cruise to the Bahamas but our Cuba cruise was canceled 14 days out. The two other couples we had planned to go with canceled but it just didn’t leave my wife and I enough time to change all of our plans. ... Read More
So we definitely did not choose a cruise to the Bahamas but our Cuba cruise was canceled 14 days out. The two other couples we had planned to go with canceled but it just didn’t leave my wife and I enough time to change all of our plans. First time to Miami and it’s a beautiful city by the beach and downtown. We arrived a day early and really enjoyed our time there. The local people operate on a totally different wave length and it doesn’t really feel like you’re in the States. The locals also tend to be very off putting and generally unfriendly but they had little do with the Miami that I experienced while I was there so it was not much of an impact. The terminal at Miami ran very smooth and it was the fastest I have ever gotten onto a ship. The terminal staff definitely weren’t as excited about my vacation as I was but they did a great job getting us through the line. Once on the Norwegian Sky we where met with little to no fan fare to the point it seemed like the ship felt quite and docile. The Sky is only a few months out from its refurbishment and the common areas look good. The design of the ship is old and has a choppy flow but the updates help and very little floral patterns are left. I think it has plenty of bars but the main dance club is also one of the main passage ways to get across the ship so it’s kind of an awkward place to hangout at in the evenings. Aside from the lone comedian who was great the rest of the entertainment staff was horrible. I really can’t believe these guys get paid for what they did. We walked into the bliss lounge on our way across the ship and heard someone trying to sing what we thought was karaoke. Nope. That was one of the paid entertainers and it was absolutely heinous. The group that performed the nightly shows in the main theater were so mediocre it was uncomfortable. The choreography looked like it was a parity and the ones that sang were so far off pitch it was like they were singing different songs. The crew overall did a great job and I never had to wait very long for anything or felt like I was being ignored. They didn’t have much enthusiasm and no one wowed me or even attempted to go above and beyond. The food was by far the poorest quality I have ever had on a cruise including the specialty dinning. We went to La Bistro and it wasn’t any better than an average chain restaurant in the US. The main buffet served the same thing everyday for breakfast and lunch. Because of forces outside of anyone’s control we had to go to three stops in the Bahamas in lieu of Cuba. Surprisingly NCL’s private island Great Stirup Cay was the best stop. It’s just an extension of the cruise ship so food and beverage are provided on the island. It’s a little hot without a breeze but the beaches and water are beautiful. The two other stops, Freeport and Nassau, are just not worth it. Freeport is a major shipping hub and has little to offer tourist other than beaches cover with drift wood. In Nassau, outside of the tourist enclave of the Atlantis Resort and the million dollar homes of the west side of the island they're just a couple of burning tires away from looking like Mogadishu during the Somali Civil War. Nassau has lots of stuff to do, none of it worth the time or money. Getting off the ship was somehow easier then getting on. From the time we stepped into the terminal I don’t think it was 90 seconds until we where outside getting onto the bus transfer to the airport. No customs, no security, I don’t think a single employee acknowledged us until we got outside to the bus driver - he was cool. So to summarize I would highly dissuade someone from taking a cruise to the Bahamas on the Norwegian Sky. The ship is sub par compared to comparable ships even on Carnival and the Bahamas are forgettable at best. Without the calamity with Cuba I would’ve never chosen a cruise to the Bahamas. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise because it went to CoCo Cay. After getting our room we noticed that there was no cold water just hot water either on cold or hot, stateroom 1362. We notified the guest services and maintenance throughout the 8 night ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it went to CoCo Cay. After getting our room we noticed that there was no cold water just hot water either on cold or hot, stateroom 1362. We notified the guest services and maintenance throughout the 8 night cruise. Not only did they say it was fixed, but then there was no water at all when you turned it to cold. After several attempts to fix the issue they said it was fixed the 2nd to last night of the cruise. At the point it was warm water no matter what setting for the sink and shower. Every morning and evening there was someone smoking on their balcony and leaving ash all over ours. We reported this to security and our stateroom attendant. Several day and this continued. We were not on the smoking side of the ship so it was not a downdraft from that. We are not smokers and this is disgusting! None the less after several complaints we gave up because nothing had been done about it. We had several bad experiences with a waiter Joel in the windjammer 3 days in a row we finally decided to have a different seating section so he would not wait on us. We ordered room service one night and although the service was quick I'd rate that a 10, the food quality was very poor. Our Main dining room experience was amazing. Iwayan (hope I got that right) and his assistant Ramnath were the best wait staff we have ever had. At CoCo Cay the dare devil's peak slide did not have enough water running though it and it scrapped up my back. I had 2 deep burns/scrapes down my back. When we notified the lifeguard they just gave me a band-aid. This left me in paid for the rest of the cruise. We ran into several other guests and they asked if I got the scrapes from the slide and they did too. This should be investigated! We returned all our pool towels on the last night and we were assured our balance had 0 towels. On the morning we were first to get off at 730 am. We find an invoice for $50. Now we had to wait the huge line in guest services to get a refund. I was refunded for the pool towels, and we expressed our concerns and issues we had while on the boat. The guest service attendant said she noted them on stateroom. After coming of the Anthem of the Seas we would not recommend Adventure of the Seas due to the lack of service and maintenance. We spent about $4000 (including the drink package) for the trip and we both were disappointed. We both filled out the surveys at the end of the cruise expecting someone would contact us but they did not. It goes to show you they do not have the best customer service nor do they probably read the surveys. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
CONS: * Raised daily parking to $20 a day * Ship feels way over capacity with the additional cabins. It's a constant battle everyday trying to find a chair outside anywhere. No exaggeration its rediculous. * Food in the ... Read More
CONS: * Raised daily parking to $20 a day * Ship feels way over capacity with the additional cabins. It's a constant battle everyday trying to find a chair outside anywhere. No exaggeration its rediculous. * Food in the dining room seemed like the worst choices in any of my 8 cruises thus far. For the first time ever only ate there on formal night. * Outside movie night again good luck finding any seats unless you go extremely early *Air conditioning was not very comfortable at all within cabin. Always on the hot side. *Comedy shows or any shows were almost impossible to see due to the over population of people and the extremely small venues *Guys burgers on other ships were the best I've ever had, just very average on the sunshine * Ran out of food and condiments. Due to the overpopulation the ship would run out of mayonnaise or French fries for a day or two until it hit port. *Room television is outdated with limited channels *Bathroom seemed smaller then usual. If sitting on toilet had to put one foot in the shower. *Room refrigerator just barely gets cold *Twin beds pushed together to make a queen but it separates every night so you either fall in the crack or just sleep far apart from each other. * Pizza place always a long wait *Sandwich place always a long wait *Blue Iguanna mexican always a long wait *Not many shelves in the cabin to put clothes *Bars were very slow for drinks. * 2 Ice machines always struggle to produce ice. *Only two pools and very overcrowded. The adult pool seems to of once been the kiddie pool because half of it is 2" of water. *Not much to do on the boat unless you just want to gamble. PROS: *Sandwich place was the best food there *Blue Iguanna was good *Breakfast in the dining room has steak and eggs every other morning. The steak is a filet and by leaps and bounds the best single meal you can receive on the boat. *Dining room for breakfast or brunch was good. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Our 14th Carnival cruise and we chose The Sunshine. We had 1 inside and 1 balcony, cabin was pretty well average, bathrooms seemed smaller than most. Dining was challenging at best. Food has gotten downright bad. Food had no flavor, ... Read More
Our 14th Carnival cruise and we chose The Sunshine. We had 1 inside and 1 balcony, cabin was pretty well average, bathrooms seemed smaller than most. Dining was challenging at best. Food has gotten downright bad. Food had no flavor, even pizza was tasteless. Deli was good, as well as Guy;s Burger. The entertainment was good, but the theater was dated. All the workers we encountered were great. Carnival needs to find a new port and drop Nassau. It with all it's income and visitors, should have a new air conditioned vendors area, instead of all the vendors selling the same thing in booths you can't find anything in. This port hasn't changed since 2004. Ship overall is on the downside, I may try RC on my next cruise. Charleston could be the best port in US if they would tear down the old warehouses and build a better port. Being platinum didn't help except disembarkation the last day.Carnival needs to give passengers more public areas on all new ships. You can't just build biggers ships, just for more cabins and more people. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
My company purchased this cruise for the office staff (Memorial Day 3 day 4 night cruise), I had never cruised with RC only NCL. I think I got spoiled on NCL because this was a huge disappointment. I was pretty excited to cruise another ... Read More
My company purchased this cruise for the office staff (Memorial Day 3 day 4 night cruise), I had never cruised with RC only NCL. I think I got spoiled on NCL because this was a huge disappointment. I was pretty excited to cruise another Cruise Line and the largest ship sailing right now, but it was lacking. The name "Royal" should actually be called "Not Impressive Cruise Line" Embarkation was quick, getting our luggage was quick, other then that, nothing special. We had the drink package, and I'm not a drinker so figured I'd be tipsy but it seemed like all the drinks were watered down because I just never got drunk. LOL The Windjammer Buffet, I tried breakfast there and it was really disgusting, the scrambled eggs felt like it had some type of fiber in it, the texture was just off, I'm assuming it was fake eggs, eggs Benedict was warm/to cold, and just wrong, the over easy eggs were sitting on plates under a warmer light, I just couldn't get myself to eat something like over easy eggs sitting under a warmer. The sausage links crumbled if you cut them, I have no idea what they were, the bacon was rubbery and under cooked. Breakfast was a washout and I didn't eat breakfast again on the ship. We also tried dinner one day, food again was warm, not hot, and stale like it sat being warmed for way too long, so we left and went and had Pizza at Sorrentos, which was good. Wonderland, this is an experience, the food was strange, some of it was really good, while others were a little to weird to eat or the texture was just wrong lol but that's Wonderland, I suggest if you want to try something new, adventure food, try it, it's definitely memorable. Chops Grill: Very bland, I had the Filet Mignon, I ordered it medium, I got well done, it was very bland and the sauce they offered for dipping was also very bland. The extra price you pay for this, just wasn't worth it. 150 Central Park: Limited menu and this time the food was so salty, my hands and feet swelled up. I must have drank a gallon of water so I could get my rings off. The pumpkin soup was very good, the salad also very good, but the lobster was not impressive. My favorite place to eat was Sorrento's and El Loco Fresh. Entertainment was average, but with such a short cruise and it being a company trip, we didn't get to book much with 6000 people on this ship it was impossible to get reservations for a party of 28. The casino was always packed. When the ship was at Coco Cay and Nassau they closed everything down, no shopping on the ship, no bands playing on the pool deck, no activities scheduled for those who chose to stay on board, it was really boring, the first day we laid around our room after walking on the decks to see what was what, they don't have any movies playing on our TV's or anywhere on the ship. We ended up napping until the 6000 were back on the ship and then it was so busy you couldn't go to anything because of the crowds. Employees: They all seemed a bit quiet, on NCL they're friendly, joke around, the employees just seem happier. If I made friendly comments to the employees on Symphony they actually seemed shocked that I would joke or acknowledge them. Maybe it's the clientele I don't know, are people more friendly on NCL? I also noticed a lot less class on this cruise. Shore excursion, Nassau hmmm what can you say, Dirty, overpriced, aggressive sales, will not accept "no thank you" the first dozen times you say it. Our driver from Atlantis back to the ship was drinking rum with the drunk riders in the front and driving reckless back to the ship. I don't care what cruise line I am on I'm never getting off the ship in Nassau again. Cabins are much larger on Symphony then on the NCL ships I've been on, the storage better, 2 closets and a dresser, I appreciated that part of the ship. Nothing on TV but several ESPN channels, FOX, MSNBC and BBC. If you choose to watch a movie on demand be prepared to pay $12.00 Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Embarkation was terrible. We had done some rearranging (traveling with a group of 7 after a cancellation) of the cabins due to an illness. All of this was done with a Carnival phone agent before the cruise. She assured us everything ... Read More
Embarkation was terrible. We had done some rearranging (traveling with a group of 7 after a cancellation) of the cabins due to an illness. All of this was done with a Carnival phone agent before the cruise. She assured us everything would go smoothly at the port. Not true! Took several people and a bunch of wasted time to straighten out who went where even though this had been done earlier... Staff was very mixed, some staff obviously didn't want to be there, others were good. Cheers package worked well for us, and many high-end drinks are included. Pool VERY packed on the sea day, stayed on ship during Nassau day and enjoyed the uncrowded pool. Dinner in the MDR was a highlight of the cruise. Good food and service. Really enjoyed the prime rib, lamb shank, and salmon cakes. Breakfast in the MDR had great avocado toast with poached eggs and a nice smoked salmon--I combined these for a very nice morning meal. Buffet had good food, but huge lines and indifferent staff. They shut down sections even though people are already in line. There is also no healthy food available in the late afternoon. Only burgers. I understand the galley must prep for dinner in the late afternoon, but can't they at least keep the salad bar open? Entertainment is below average. The comedians were both fantastic--but not the musicians. Also, they use canned music for background instead of a live band--NCL is better than that. Piano bar was fun, though repititious if you go more than once. Went to Taino Beach in Freeport, 20 minutes in a broken down taxi for $7 each person--but nice beach and $5.75 gets you a chair and they keep the beach clean. Nassau, stayed on the ship and enjoyed the lack of crowds. Nice Caribbean buffet lunch that day with no lines. Fitness center has good equipment and an ocean view. Debarkation was more big lines. Only one guy scanning cards. ICE did their usual slow job of checking passports--but that's not the cruise lines fault. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Where to start... 1. Lines, be ready to wait in a lot of them. From dining, boarding and getting off the ship you will spend 10-15% of your awake time standing in some kind of damn line. Also be prepared to have terrible communication ... Read More
Where to start... 1. Lines, be ready to wait in a lot of them. From dining, boarding and getting off the ship you will spend 10-15% of your awake time standing in some kind of damn line. Also be prepared to have terrible communication from the cruise director as to where you should ACTUALLY go to stand in line as well as poor planning on how to execute service excellence Examples A. Initial boarding - 15-20 Agents are there to check international travel documentation, rolls through semi smooth. Exiting - Only 7 agents to check documentation, causing major delays in getting off the ship. *important if you have a flight to catch. I’ll also mention you are in a steel building in 100 degree Jacksonville heat with no AC. Dip security personal announces “welcome back to the real world, citing line length and to suck it up”. They already have your money, at this point they don’t care about your experience. 2700 people exiting the ship and only 7 lines. Example B. Dining We went here on our honeymoon and never once got to eat breakfast or lunch together. It’s unorganized lunchroom chaos. You can’t start out in 2 different lines and arrive at your table 20 minutes apart. Example C. Excursions If you are told to be on deck 3 to exit the ship; don’t plan on going to deck 3 and expecting to walk off. The line to exit starts on the deck 4 and wraps down two hallways. Don’t expect a carnival agent to actively be communicating this or managing the lines either. This also pertains to your final exit from the ship as well. It’s not that it’s an oversight; it’s just that they don’t care enough to come up with another system. Additionally, Princess Kays lunch had impossible lines for Hamburgers and hotdogs the entire time we were there. We weren’t going to take an hour out of our time there to stand in that line. We are when we got back on the boat. But seriously, 2700 people in two lines to get hamburgers and hotdogs. 2. The “cheers” package. If you think this is going to be all inclusive , its not. It’s limit of 15 alcoholic drinks a day (does not apply on the carnival owned Princess Kays island either, you are paying full price there). This is somewhat expected however here at the ‘extra’ limitations. A. If you are an early riser and would like a coke product or an energy drink in the morning; don’t expect to get it before 8am. Additionally, expect to wait in a separate line if you want a coke with your lunch. *Most important, they won’t give you a unopened (single can) of coke to add ice to and drink in the morning before the bar areas open. I had to ask for a supervisor after my wife requested one for me and got shot down. B. “I’d like a double” is taboo with Cheers. They don’t have the capability of pouring more than one shot at a time. You have to wait 5 minutes and get back in the line and wait for another shot to be added to your glass. Lines vary, but expect a double of liquor to take 15-20 minutes total. Additionally you can not pay extra for a double.m205 3. Beach chairs and pool size Chairs are less than an inch apart from each other on the ship and at the carnival resort. Expect to be right on top of one another and to see many people trip trying to navigate between them. If you don’t like crowds, then you will never swim in the pool. It’s filled to capacity most hours of the day. It’s roughly 1/4 of an Olympic pool size for 2700 guests. 4. Entertainment Pro- Actually really good music Cons- Emphasis on jewelry purchases and art auctions. A lot of emphasis on this. Comic/magician from Chicago was terrible. 5. Broken elevators, 2700 guests. Do the math. 6. Beds are similar to those you’ll find in a camper. 7. Dinners were all actually really good; with great service. Everything is loud. Like REALLY loud. Don’t expect to communicate with other guests if you are a stones throw from any entertainment venue. 8. Carnival rates the ship for 2056 passengers (guests). We were told 2700 were exiting the ship. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Sailed out of Port Canaveral on 5-17-2019 on a 3 day cruise, I’ve sailed a few other times with other companies, 5 cabins were with our party, it was my birthday and a present from my wife,my 3 children joined along with other family ... Read More
Sailed out of Port Canaveral on 5-17-2019 on a 3 day cruise, I’ve sailed a few other times with other companies, 5 cabins were with our party, it was my birthday and a present from my wife,my 3 children joined along with other family members. First afternoon out slide and pool got closed off. Saturday was spent all day in port, still not opened and they closed off basketball,volleyball and putt-putt. Went to complain and after asking to speak with supervisor they brought in 2 deck supervisor, after expressing my issue the pool deck supervisor smiled and said a kid puked in pool and they can’t discharge in port, although they had closed while out to sea the day before. All courts were closed due to rain shower while sutt was being released from the big whale tail which settled on floor of courts, which they were sweeping up around 11:30am no one returned for another 6 hours to mop the courts, finally opened courts, pool was not cleaned till 12:00-1:00 the last day of the cruise and didn’t open for several hours after that. Trip just sucked, and for the pool deck supervisor, to just stand there and smirk while I expressed my disappointment. Even after pointing out that she was smirking at me. Just really proves they have no compassion for there guests. I was very upset with them as it was very hard to entertain 3 kids for 3 days and for them to look at all the other ships at port with kids playing on water slides, basketball, volleyball and see the disappointment in there eyes just was heart breaking and again to have her keep smiling! If your going with children pick another cruise line, and if something goes wrong don’t expect anything from them. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
Very poor planning. The first night had no plumbing on half the ship but no one woke the managers up so we had to wait until 7:30am to know what options we had. There were no working public bathrooms and no one was able to help us. Finally ... Read More
Very poor planning. The first night had no plumbing on half the ship but no one woke the managers up so we had to wait until 7:30am to know what options we had. There were no working public bathrooms and no one was able to help us. Finally at 4pm, the plumbing was fixed. They did give us rooms to use with working bathrooms but we paid for a suite and these were small rooms. The staff was good. Some of the people on the ship were rude. Everything cost extra, even the free drink coupons since there was an 18% service charge added. Don’t get room service since you pay $6 service charge. Save $ and take a different cruise. The suite was beautiful. Regular dining food was not good. We did get upgraded to fancy restaurant and the food in that restaurant was excellent. The buffet food was just ok. Typical buffet food. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
MSC- Money Sucking Cruise When my friends invited me on a 8 night 7 day cruise (this being my first time ever going,) I was highly estatic and filled with excitement at the possibilities of seeing sights and enjoying myself on a ... Read More
MSC- Money Sucking Cruise When my friends invited me on a 8 night 7 day cruise (this being my first time ever going,) I was highly estatic and filled with excitement at the possibilities of seeing sights and enjoying myself on a beautiful ship. First off, some background info is due. I am a military vet and I also have around ten years of experience of clientel, service, sales, and management. From our first step on the boat my party was offered dinning and drinking packages, understandable it being the first day (we all received a basic drinkers package and 3gbs of wifi with our itinerary,) but the sales NEVER STOPPED. When I say never, they were trying to sell us packages on our last day while we were eating dinner! Putting salesmanship behind me, my party was very much looking forward to night swimming and enjoying ourselves when all the kids were in bed. Negative. MSC closes their pools 6pm regardless if the sun is still up. Don't ask me why or how, but if they are lacking night time lifeguards they can sure use those salesmen offering us stupid packages! Which brings me to my next point: if you want to be served at the bar, expect those "free" 14 alcoholic drinks (which are limited basically to gin and coke, mosquitos, and long islands ONLY,) expect them to come in little fake plastic glass cups, be warm and roughly 30 minutes late. Don't like the drink? My friend MSC has your back! Go to another bar and it'll be served completely different and also in a different sized cup. First stop, the wonderful and beautiful streets of Pureto-Rico. We landed roughly around 6:30 and we were due back around 12 am...guess we are drinking again tonight fellas because everything else was closed! The majority of the food? Required reservations ahead of time (if you do find yourselves in the happy lands of heat and music, please order a Mofongo from your boy, thank me later). Our first day at sea in my opinion was a wonderful experience...thats only if you enjoy pools (that close at six mind you!) and sun. The waters were warm and I believe from the ocean since they were salty (I prefer cold water to refresh me when I swim personally,) and we found ourselves multiple times searching for a spot to sit and raise a flag for it was crowded. Beware of the main pool on deck 16! Looks like a giant pool but half of it is ankle deep? What?! When the sun became bothersome I found myself in the wonderful MSC casino..if you are a gambler like me, I hope you enjoy one blackjack table and one table of 3 card poker against dealer...besides that there are slots... enjoy! Oh and no smoking unless you enjoy facing the corner wall!!! Our other stops (St. Thomas, Bahamas, Virgin Isles,) I highly recommend you walk off port and find your own "extersion" we hired a driver for 20 dollars a person and received a 3 hour tour of one of the isles and it was wonderful. In comparison I paid 89 dollars to touch a sting Ray for five minutes then sat on the beach on one of the Bahamas islands...you do the math. Now we get to some juice, put on your reading glasses folks (if you haven't already, sorry for the long review!) because here is where it gets good in the third act. You. Will. Be. Charged. 87 dollars and 50 cents for room service. Even if you don't use them / call them / need them (like my party,) not in the paperwork you say? Say no more! Step on board and welcome to MSC! May I offer you one of our wonderful and expensive food packages while you are enjoying your dinner with your family? Please note, all of the above was told to 3 staff members and one manager who ended our conversation with "If you have any problems call customer service" and literally ran away to hide from me without wishing me a good day or sorry for my troubles (I spoke sival, lucid, and clear where the manager clearly didn't speak English.... properly.) Money Sucking Cruise gets one fat star for the beauty, the music at the nightlife (after 11pm the Disco room behind the arcade that is NEVER used is the place to be (25 dollars for 30 minutes of bowling what?!)) and they also get one star for a wonderful server and waitress who provided 5 star performance at dinner (buffett only had hot dogs and burgers from 11-5pm what?!) before their manager told them to stop socializing with us (which we resented him for) So please don't choose MSC...please don't... Read Less

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