Carnival is known as a budget friendly cruise line catering to young people and families. We spent a week aboard the Carnival Glory as a multi-generational group of 7 which included 2 older adults, myself and my husband and our three ... Read More
Carnival is known as a budget friendly cruise line catering to young people and families. We spent a week aboard the Carnival Glory as a multi-generational group of 7 which included 2 older adults, myself and my husband and our three kids, 22, 17 and 10. Overall, it was a good experience but there are several things worth mentioning.
PROS AND CONS
Passengers—The people on a Carnival cruise tend to fall in a couple of categories: young folks looking for an affordable party cruise and multi-generational families. You would think that these two groups could not coexist well, but they do! Carnival has offerings for every age group and taste—many varieties of food, price levels and entertainment/activities which includes water slides, adult and family pools, and music ranging from Top 40 and hip hop to rock to Latin to Mowtown.
Staff—The housekeeping and restaurant staff was wonderful—patient, good-natured and helpful.
Staterooms—We had three staterooms with ocean views. The state rooms are larger than the ocean views we’ve had on Royal Caribbean. There was room for a King bed and a seating area and there was plenty of storage. The port holes were large and at a good height so we could really appreciate the view.
Laundry—The ship has self serve laundry on each deck which is very convenient. It costs about $8 for detergent, wash and dry.
Food—The food was very good. We had dinner in the Platinum dining room every night. The menu had variety and always offered some basic dishes such as steak, chicken and salmon in case one did not care for that night’s special menu. It also offered some rarities such as rabbit, escargot and frog legs. On the first elegant night, they offered lobster and prime rib.
Good eats could also be found throughout the ship at Guy Fiori’s burger joint and at Pizza Pirate. There was a sushi station and a Mexican cantina. The 9th floor Lido buffet was standard cafeteria food which was average but practical when one was in a hurry.
Ocean Club—The kids camp was wonderful. My 10-year old loved going there and did not complain at all. She made friends on the ship and had company when we went to the pool. The Night Owl service allowed us to enjoy our evenings until 1 am. The care givers were excellent and always madeit fun for the kids. My daughter was happy to be there.
Entertainment—In the evenings we had choices between a piano bar sing along (Louis is great!), dance club, Carnival Players (Broadway type shows with a different musical theme every night), dive-in movies, casino, comedy club and on some nights, deck parties by the pool. None of it was spectacular (except for Louis who has mad piano skills), but it was generally good and made for some fun evenings.
Carnival Hub—this is an app you can download on your phone for $5 and it allows you to communicate with your friends and family on the cruise and contains the schedule of activities and deck maps. Very handy!
No frills--Carnival is a budget friendly cruise line and throughout the trip you are reminded of that. The Glory is about 14 years old and it looks dated—paint is chipping in certain places, the decor, signage and lighting scream 1990s. There are no fancy shampoos, bath gels and lotions, only wall dispenser in the shower containing shampoo and bath gel. No conditioner! The room service trays sit outside the room for hours and look quite disgusting as you are walking to your cabin.
Room service menu—Again with the no frills theme…the room service menu is designed to discourage you from ordering. The menu offers salads and sandwiches such as grilled cheese, rueben and ham and cheese but if you want the kinds of things people love to eat at 2 am after partying or at 5 pm in between lunch and dinner, there are few free options. That 2 am pizza or wing platter will have you paying extra. There is no cheese and crackers platter at all and only a small veggie platter if you want a snack.
Maintenance—With an older ship, there will be maintenance issues. The AC in our room was not blowing, so the maintenance staff spent a good part of the week fixing the unit which provided AC to our line of cabins. They were able to get us cool air by removing the vent cover. We had another issue in which we were woken up by a strong chemical odor in our room (made stronger by the fact there was no vent cover on our AC). Several others on our deck complained and were told that the maintenance crew was painting. However, the fumes were very strong and not like paint fumes, more like adhesive or fuel fumes. The kind of stuff that I am sure would have called for significant ventilation which we had none. For about 2 hours we were breathing this in and guest services had no answers or even any concessions for us. That was unacceptable.
WiFi—The WiFi available to passengers on the ship is very week. I had business to do and I paid for the premium WiFi which costs $25/day. I was unable to handle any business, banking or even upload pictures to facebook. I complained to Guest Services and they refunded 75% of the fee
Port—Half Moon Cay This is Carnival’s island. It offers very little aside from a pretty beach. The ship can’t dock there so you get there via tender. Once on the island, you discover a plaza with a couple of stalls selling cheap touristy things and a small bar. THERE IS NO SHADE ON THE ISLAND. The only people that had some relief from the sweltering heat were those who paid $500 to use the beach-side cabanas for the few hours we were in port. The cabanas were booked weeks in advance of the cruise. There were hundreds of lounge chairs around, but no umbrellas. We went, we saw and we left as soon as we possibly could. Carnival can do better than this. Read Less