7 Miami to Caribbean - Western Carnival Imagination Cruise Reviews

Alright, Where to start with this ship. This is a long review but having terrible guest service and pee coming out of your sink deserves something long. When we first went through embarkation- it was a breeze and could not wait to get on ... Read More
Alright, Where to start with this ship. This is a long review but having terrible guest service and pee coming out of your sink deserves something long. When we first went through embarkation- it was a breeze and could not wait to get on the ship and have some FUN on the "Fun Ship" since this was our first time with carnival cruise lines. When finally arriving on the ship looking at the inside of the ship seemed somewhat of an 80s scene but it was okay. We found our room and quickly noticed that we had 4 girls in a 3 person bedroom. Which is not what the Carnival agent told me I was picking when I ordered my room. We went ahead and put on our bathing suits and went outside to see the ship leave before we went to Guest Services about this problem. After departing we went straight to Guest Services where they told us that all we could get was a trundle bed. This would have been okay if the Carnival agent would not have told us that we would have two twin beds and two twins coming out of the wall. After going back and forth with Catalina, the ever-so rude guest service rep, we asked to speak to the manager. She then said to us, "You don't want to talk to the manager she will be mean to you, I will not go get her" WAIT!!! Is this actually guest service!?!?! NO!!!! I am in the Hospitality Industry, and will be graduating with a Hospitality Management Degree this May. This is NOT okay!! Later, George, another rude guest services member, asked us "do you even know the definition of a trundle bed, like do you know what it is?" Yes, we know what a trundle bed is we have not been living under a rock for our whole lives. After speaking with several (rude) guest service reps we finally reach Giselle, a manager. She was not nice- although she did not give us the four person. We ended up, 4 girls with a lot of luggage, with a trundle bed. It was pretty clean in the room so it wasn't that bad till we had PEE coming out of our sink, but I will handle that later. After our first horrific incident I was pretty sure that I would never cruise with Carnival again and stick with Royal Caribbean (which is what I normally cruise). The food was not very good, ever. Mediocre at best. The only meal of the day I would throughly enjoy was breakfast. The Mahi-Mahi on the last night of the cruise was close to the consistency of steak. I normally just ate pizza or salad every day because thats the only thing I could count on to be okay. The workers were worthless for the most part. Their answer for everything was "I don't know" How do you not know things about what your working and living on? Could not even give directions on how to get to the gangway. WORTHLESS. Day 2 was not bad because we were stopped at Key West for a couple hours. Key west was amazing and I would love to take a trip solely to Key West- simply beautiful. Coming back onto the cruise was kind of a let down, but I was going to give carnival another chance. Day 3 we went to Cozumel, which was nice. However, it was too windy and too much under toe to get into the water at Playa Del Mia. So we just sat around, had drinks (from the open bar), and took plenty of pictures. I liked the fact that we stayed till around 9:30 pm in Cozumel because we also got to experience Fat Tuesdays, which was TONS of fun! The next day was the day at sea. It was very relaxing yet cold! Had to wrap up in our towels! That day was the day that we encountered Pee in our sink. I seriously wish I could post a picture of this incident because I have one. Anyways, one of the girls was using the restroom and had the water running and it was a brownish-yellow color. We let it run for about 8 minutes and it stayed like this. So, we stopped up the sink and let the water run in it so that we could take a picture. I seriously am wanting to vomit rethinking about this situation. It was simply that disgusting. Smelled like pee and everything. We went straight to guest services where we talked to George, yet again. We told him and showed him the picture that we took. He said "Oh yes we have had other complaints about that you have to let it run for a little bit and it will get better." We told him that we let it run for close to 10 minutes. and we wanted to have an engineer come check it out. He said okay. We asked him why is was doing this, because this is simply disgusting. He beat around the bush a little but essentially said this in short," The pipes get loose and the engineers have to tighten them." Then said a lot of unnecessary things and then said this " Our storage tanks have gotten mixed up so you will eventually get clean water" Whoa whoa whoa, wait ? So pretty much I have been drinking the water and brushing my teeth with water that gets mixed up with the USED toilet water? This was the last straw. I was disgusted. Obviously could not brush my teeth for the rest of the time on the cruise. This has NEVER happened to me before on multiple other cruises by Royal Caribbean and Celebrity. Carnival has some serious things to change after all of their problems with not just this ship. I think I hit most of the terrible things that happened on this cruise. I still had fun when hanging out with the fellow cruisers- but everything else about the situation was terrible. Wish I would have cruised Royal. Read Less
Sail Date March 2013
All in all the cruise would have been fine except for the employees and the food. On the ship the employees all seemed to be miserable and customer service was non-existent. The worst of the bunch was "Guest Services". Ha Ha. ... Read More
All in all the cruise would have been fine except for the employees and the food. On the ship the employees all seemed to be miserable and customer service was non-existent. The worst of the bunch was "Guest Services". Ha Ha. What a joke. The second worst of the bunch were those people standing around chatting with each other at baggage claim. Don't bother asking for help. They will just look at you like you are from a different planet and interrupting their uber important conversations about what they had for dinner the night before or how their kids are doing in Little League. The rest of the crew when you could find them, all looked like the were totally disinterested and it showed in their actions. My 8 y/o grandson even noticed. He said the only nice person was the cabin steward and with the exception of one of the bartenders in the atrium bar he was right. As for the ship itself, the pool is small and over crowded and the food was mediocre at best. Greasy bacon and cold mushy waffles at the breakfast buffet. Room service, which we ordered frequently in self defense had a limited menu but was at least edible. On a bright note, the bathroom in the cabin was very clean. Shore excursions were over priced. The Glass Bottom Boat in Key west was boring. Whatever you do don't go on the Jungle Island excursion in Miami. Very expensive bus ride to the airport with an extremely short diversion thrown in. They dumped us off there before the place even opened. Then when we got to the airport afterwards they dropped us off at the absolute furthest point from our terminal that they could get. We had to walk so far to our terminal we almost missed our flight. And don't call Carnival about it. They won't do anything and if you ask to speak to a supervisor they conveniently won't be able to find one (on a Friday afternoon) and will have to have one return your call. Within 72 hours no less. I'm still waiting for my call. All in all I have learned a lesson. Read, read, read as many reviews as you can and fully check out the ship you are going on. It is as important as where you are going. Read Less
Sail Date May 2012
Just came back from a 4 night cruise to Key West and Cozumel on the Carnival Imagination. This was my sixth cruise and my first on Carnival. It will be my last. Carnival has a long way to go to catch up with its competitors. The ... Read More
Just came back from a 4 night cruise to Key West and Cozumel on the Carnival Imagination. This was my sixth cruise and my first on Carnival. It will be my last. Carnival has a long way to go to catch up with its competitors. The following things were positive: * Ease of check-in * Availability of transportation to and from the port * Warm chocolate melting cake dessert The following things were negative: * Staff - very few acknowledged passengers when they passed by * Counted 27 staff members over a three hour period that walked by a pile of dirty plates on the Lido deck without picking them up * Entertainment was horrendous - the "family" friendly comedy show was vulgar and embarrassing at times * Food was below average * Lines were long at every meal if you didn't eat in the sit down area and even then it took eons to get your meal * One morning two servers were busy chatting when I asked for ham. The server gave me bacon and I explained I had asked for ham. He argued with me - unbelievable. * Brad the Cruise Director walked around with a cellphone glued to his ear ignoring passengers left and right. * Silverware often dirty * Tables not washed down with any regularity or effectiveness I would strongly advise that you look elsewhere for a cruise. Carnival is not passenger oriented and did little to nothing to address my concerns. Find another cruise line to use. You'll be glad you did. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
If I have to sum the experience up - you get what you paid for. We booked this cruise because of the very tempting price, however, we were very disappointed with the cruise as I will details below. Embarkation - the only thing that ... Read More
If I have to sum the experience up - you get what you paid for. We booked this cruise because of the very tempting price, however, we were very disappointed with the cruise as I will details below. Embarkation - the only thing that went without any problem. We arrived quite early from our flight (around 10:30), were escorted inside and checked in in a matter of minutes. We were on Zone 1 embarkation and were on the boat around 11:30 without any problem. If everything will go that smoothly in Miami every time it would be perfect. Public rooms - I was warned that Carnival ship are tacky, and the warning were on the spot. Imagine a Vegas hotel, complete with the neon lights, blinking signs and golden sculptures everywhere and you'll get the point. Not really my taste, but after couple of days it does not hurt your retina anymore as you get use to it. There are several "clubs" on the ship, most of them on deck 9 with one on deck 8. If you are a smoker, you'll love the boat. If you are not (like me), you'll hate every second of it - as almost all the "clubs" allow smoking in them which limits your choice of entertainment at night considerably (more on that below). The spa/gym are the much better than the rest of the ship - modern design, wet and dry saunas, and well equipped gym. Cabin - We had an inside cabin. It is larger than comparable inside cabin on other cruise lines, and very comfortable space wise. The bed were in the wrong configuration as we walked in, which took couple of hours to fix - but it was done efficiently and as promised. The cabin attendant was great and so were the cleaning crew. The cabin was one of the stronger points of Carnival - but than again who wants to spend time in the cabin? Dining - one of my biggest disappointments in Carnival. Most of the reviews rave the quality of the food and I guess I've expected better. In short, the Lido buffet food was mediocre at best. I would suggest skipping it completely (unless like me you are addicted to Anchovy pizza - which was OK). The food in the main dining rooms are hit or miss. Sometime the appetizers were delicious, sometime just OK. The main course never really managed to get better than mediocre. The deserts, ranged from horrible to very good (try the Key Lime Pie). Now for the service - we had open dining which we loved, so we did not receive the same service every night, but in general the level of English understanding of the waiting staff is lacking. There was always something missing, the orders not exactly as requested, the need to ask for things multiple times. Only one night we had a perfect, proactive, wait stuff. The other nights there was always some sort of confusion or mix-ups. Entertainment - We went only for two shows in the main lounge. Both we left after couple of minuets as it was amateurish at best. We were on larger ships and enjoyed the shows on them, in which the talent and production level were much better. We tried the late night comedian. Unfortunately, his idea of a good show is to use profanities every other word. I am far from a prude and don't mind them, however, funny they are not. We left after 5 minutes. We enjoyed the Karaoke very much - actually had some very good singers on the ship. It was also the only non-smoking public space at night, so we did not have any real choice either. We would have loved to go to the disco - but it was so smoky we could not stand it. We manged to get into the piano bar when the smoke level was more tolerable, however it was not worth the time. The performer is pretty bad, with very limited list of songs. The public Jazz performance, and pianist were pretty good though. The dictionary probably define annoying with the cruise director, "Karl with a K". The man cannot stop talking. He was really not my cup of tea. One other observation - I have never seen so many security roaming the ship at night (well, I never seen any security on any other cruise line). Nor did I ever seen security confiscating alcohol from those who were completely wasted. In short, the price was very low, but you get what you paid for. Never again for me. Read Less
Sail Date September 2009
NEVER, EVER AGAIN! They had very little assistance for disabled passengers. The room was filthy, I don't even want to know what was on the wall next to the bed! During the boat drill the door handle on the door to lifeboat station ... Read More
NEVER, EVER AGAIN! They had very little assistance for disabled passengers. The room was filthy, I don't even want to know what was on the wall next to the bed! During the boat drill the door handle on the door to lifeboat station "F" came off in an employees hand. The hot tubs on the Lido deck were barely warm so they shut them down temporarily telling everyone to go to the spa for the indoor hot tubs where one was out of service also. The bedding was never changed, many on M Deck never even got washcloths until day 3. I was told they ran out -- they were in the laundry! Extra blankets were needed because the rooms were so cold, and the dust even on ice bucket could be was so thick it could be written in. The ship had a 25% rate of passengers under 18 running wild unsupervised even by the ships staff, taking over normal adult areas. Several passengers including myself got food poisoning in the Spirit Dining Room. When staff was contacted about the food poisoning they asked if we were SURE it was not seasickness - with being seasick you do not need to spend a night in the bathroom with the trash can in your lap. After that they sent down a pot of tea and crackers! The stay in Key West was cut short by 2 hours from the schedule posted online prior to sailing. The ride was extremely rough, even the cruise director Rebeccah commented that she had never seen the ship listing and rolling like that before. With decks that did not go all the way through it was extremely hard to get around on the ship. In the atrium one of the glass elevators was stuck between floors when we sailed, and was still there when we returned. The others would be out of service or would not go to the floors you pushed the buttons for, especially hard when trying to go ashore from deck 3 in Key West and Cozumel. The highlight in Cozumel was while in "Centro" the ladies room was being cleaned by several young men and the line waiting was very long - finally a woman had her son-in-law guard the door to the MENS ROOM while the ladies went inside, on the way out family and friends were taking pictures of these ladies exiting the mens room. Wet passengers from the pool area walking down the marble hallway made it very slippery for other passengers to walk down the Gallery. The buffets were without trays so it was impossible to carry food to the tables and keep your balance, and the lines more closely resembled a cattle drive. Room service could take up to an hour to be delivered and very few selections available. One highlights and shopping tour group in Cozumel was brought back to the ship nearly an hour late so many missed their dinner seatings. There was no backup because second seating was full. The menu selections were very limited because it was one of the shorter cruises. The dining room staff did attempt to do what they could to help. Maitre d' Miguel in the Spirit Dining Room was one of the highlights, he was bright and entertaining and he tried very hard to accommodate those guests who missed their dinner seatings because of the tour group problems. The Vegas Shows ("Living in America" and "Shout") and Comedy Shows were quite good. The Spa Staff was very busy, but they kept smiling and trying to get everyone taken care of. The Cruise Director and I had a talk about some of the problems onboard, and she was kind enough to send a bottle of wine to our table the night I celebrated my birthday. Other than the few mentioned most of the staff seemed to just barely be doing their jobs well enough to get by and that was as far as service would go. This was NOT a FUN TRIP on this FUN SHIP by any means. Its pretty bad when you realize you could have won the FREE TRIP, and you might have to go back and do it again or give the free tickets away - to someone you really do not care about at all. Read Less
Sail Date December 2004
Our first lesson learned is never fly the day of embarkation. The stress of delayed flights, overbooking, etc. is unbearable. Our flight did not arrive in Miami until 3:10. We had been in constant contact with Carnival on the airplane so ... Read More
Our first lesson learned is never fly the day of embarkation. The stress of delayed flights, overbooking, etc. is unbearable. Our flight did not arrive in Miami until 3:10. We had been in constant contact with Carnival on the airplane so they were aware we were arriving later than expected. Carnival told us we would not be allowed to board any later then 3:45. We were met at the arrival gate by an unfriendly, indifferent Carnival agent who ushered us to baggage claim. At 3:30, we were told we would not be able to wait any longer for our luggage even though Delta was announcing that they were still unloading baggage from the plane. So we left the airport with no luggage and were put on a shuttle bus. We were the only people besides another couple (they were on a different boat than us). The driver of the bus and the unfriendly Carnival rep made idle chit chat for about 7 minutes while we sat and fumed on the bus that we could have been retrieving our luggage. We arrived on the boat thankful that we made it and proceeded to our cabin where we changed into bathing suits (thank goodness our travel agent told us to pack bathing suits on our carry-on so we could go to the pool). Our children (ages 5 and 6) were so excited to go to the pool. It had no water in it! We had early dining and since we did not have our luggage were unable to shower and change into appropriate clothing so we had to eat the buffet. We do not care for this style of dining however the food was mediocre at best. We went to bed early due to the stress of the day. We could not understand a word our room steward said to us the entire cruise. He was Columbian, although he kept our room spotless and the beds were very comfortable. The water pressure in the shower was a joke. My daughter has very thick curly hair and it was extremely difficult to wash her hair without any water pressure. Day Two: Ate buffet breakfast again. soggy eggs and greasy bacon, long lines, rude fellow passengers. Went to kids pool again- no water in it again! Were told it was too dangerous to have water in the pool because of rough seas. The other 2 pools onboard did have water but our children could not enjoy because of the depth. Words can not express how we felt. We wanted to go home but were looking forward to Grand Cayman the next day. Had our clothes sent out for laundry service so we could have clean clothes. We were charged $52.00 to have 4 pairs underwear, 1 child's shorts, 1 child's dress and 1 man's shirt cleaned. We were told we would not have to pay due to the delay in receiving luggage. I am still fighting to have this charge reimbursed. Day 3: Woke up and saw that we were off shore of Grand Cayman, loud speaker announced that due to rough seas we would not be able to get off the boat. Devastated we went to kid's pool again and it finally had water in it. After several hours the boat sailed to the other side of the island and we were allowed to get off the boat. The line to get off the boat started on the seventh floor and ended on the third floor. Absolutely ridiculous. We laughed and went back to the pool and waited for 3 hours for the lines to dissipate. We finally made it off the boat about 12:30 and got to enjoy 2 and a half hours of Seven Mile Beach. We had the best meal of our vacation on Grand Cayman. Stood in line for 45 minutes to get back on the boat. What a joke. Got back to room and thankfully our luggage was there. Our room steward made it clear that our luggage was very heavy so we felt obliged to tip him $20.00. At least we got to go to our dining room for the first time. Our waiter Jimmy was the highlight of the cruise. He made us feel like we were the only people on the ship. He asked where we had been the two previous nights and said he was worried. The meal was excellent and the service was impeccable. We even had complimentary champagne (due to another inconvenience I won't even mention). Oh I forgot to mention that we didn't even get to enjoy formal night because we had no clothes! Day 4: Jamaica- Not! Due to rough seas port authority closed the ports and we were not allowed to get off the boat. Unbelievable. Later we received a letter informing us that Carnival is reimbursing us $25.00 per person for port charges. Wow! The only activity we could find on that ship was Bingo. We forced the kids to go to Camp Carnival where it was overcrowded and the Caregivers seemed stressed. We picked the kids up after 2 hours and they were unimpressed. We headed back to Miami a day early. Day 5: The most beautiful day. Why we were not allowed to go to a different port is a mystery. We spent the day at the kid's pool with every other bored to death family. Our whole cruise we met not one person who was happy or impressed with carnival. There was no one to serve you drinks on the kids deck or any kind of music or any entertainment at all. We could not wait to get off this ship. When we got back home and started the process of getting our money back we were offered a 20% discount on our next Carnival Cruise. No thank you- never again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2004
The cruise was wonderful! It was our 4th time cruising with Carnival and we find cruising is our best vacation overall. The food was excellent on the buffets, however, the dining room was not up to par with other ships and we enjoyed the ... Read More
The cruise was wonderful! It was our 4th time cruising with Carnival and we find cruising is our best vacation overall. The food was excellent on the buffets, however, the dining room was not up to par with other ships and we enjoyed the Horizon Grill and the Lido Deck better than the dining room. Don't get me wrong - it was still good, just not as good as the dining rooms on other Carnival ships (Destiny being the best by far) we've sailed, and certainly not as good as the food presented at the grills. But there is always food on Carnival! The entertainment was okay . . . the Karaoke was fun except for a couple of untalented guys took over thinking they were funny when they were just drunk and really had no talent at all -- so we just left and came back when they were done. But the host in the Xanadu Lounge hosting the Karaoke was wonderful. We would like to see an old fashioned juke box in one of the lounges so that people could choose the music they would like to dance to. People who cruise with Carnival like to party - that's a given. (There are plenty of cruise lines for those who do not). So why not give them the choice of selecting the songs they like to dance to? Rather than trying to find a band diverse enough to play genre for all ages, a juke box will allow passengers to select the special songs that they like to dance to. The comedian on the last night was a riot - we enjoyed him very much. The first night's comedian was okay - but typical. Jokes were tired - even heard some before . . . maybe even on carnival (maybe we saw him before?). They had a magician one night. We left Miami on Thursday, April 22nd and headed for Key West. We shopped in Key West On Friday for a couple of hours but returned to the ship early to enjoy the activities on deck, the tropical cocktails and the beautiful weather. (We were celebrating our anniversary . . .) Saturday, we arrived in Cozumel. We went on the excursion to the Mayan Ruins in Tulum - it was awesome. The ferry ride (40 minutes across the open sea) was a little scary (I don't swim . . . and it's not quite the same as being on a cruise ship . . .) but the little pill my husband got from the purser's desk took care of the seasickness, so that wasn't a problem although I noticed other passengers suffering with that problem. Unfortunately, my husband only took one package (containing 2 tablets) so he did not prepare for the trip back . . . if you take that excursion, you may want to take a package for the trip back. WE had to go to a Mexican drug store and buy the tablets for $9 a package and they were not quite the same -- they had 2 other ingredients (an anti-histamine and another cold-type medication that make you very sleepy, not like the medication the purser has) so we couldn't stay awake that night). As are all the Carnival ships, Imagination is a beautiful ship. Its staff is professional, friendly and courteous. Our room steward was superb. The bathroom was cleaned with bleach every morning -- it sparkled and smelled fresh and clean. We love cruising and we love Carnival Cruise Lines. We will cruise again - but 4 days is just not long enough!!! We need 7 days. Karen & Joe Amenita Florida Read Less
Sail Date April 2004
Carnival Imagination Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.5 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.7
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 3.9
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 4.5 3.8
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.7
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 5.0 4.0
Rates 3.0 4.3

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