Year Started: 1972
Ships in Fleet: 25
Summary: The most successful cruise line in history. Don't be misled, a high-quality cruise experience perfect for families and young couples, Fantastic value. the FUN ships, but not "party boats."
Regions:Caribbean Eastern, Caribbean Western, Caribbean
Good for: First-time Cruisers. Families. Singles.
Good for: Families. Singles. Seniors.
Good for: Teens. First-time Cruisers. Families.
Regions:Caribbean Eastern, Caribbean Western
Good for: Singles. Teens. Families.
Regions:Caribbean Eastern, Caribbean Western
Good for: Singles. Families. Group.
Regions:Bahamas, Caribbean Eastern
Good for: Overall Service. Seniors. Families.
Regions:Bahamas, Bermuda, South America
Good for: Group. Families. Foodies.
Good for: Families. Children`s Programs. Singles.
Regions:East and West Caribbean
Good for: Singles. First-time Cruisers. Overall Service.
Good for: Families. Value for Money. Singles.
Good for: First-time Cruisers. Families. Group.
Good for: Families. Group. Singles.
Good for: Value for Money. Overall Service. Children`s Programs.
Good for: Families. Singles. Overall Service.
Regions: Bahamas, Caribbean, Canada/New England, Cruise To Nowhere
Good for: Families. Teens. Children`s Programs.
Regions:Mexico, Caribbean Eastern, Hawaii
Good for: Families. Overall Service. Value for Money.
Regions:Bahamas, Caribbean Eastern
Good for: Singles. Group. First-time Cruisers.
Regions:Europe, TransAtlantic, Caribbean
Good for: Seniors. First-time Cruisers. Families.
Regions:Caribbean Eastern, Caribbean Western
Good for: Families. Group. Luxury Travelers.
Good for: Group. Singles. First-time Cruisers.
Good for: Families. Singles. Teens.
Regions:Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexico, Panama Canal
Good for: Singles. Families. Value for Money.
Good for: Families. Seniors. Children`s Programs.
overall good cruise. some ports disappointing as well as excursion
This was my first cruise and i enjoyed it! Will plan my next trip soon!
It was a doomed trip from the very beginning. Our plane left 6 hours after the takeoff time due to weather on the east coast. Then we finally get into Miami at 12:30am! Then my friend's luggage gets lost and all she has is the set of clothes on her and a swimsuit. Finally we book, normal there. It was sunny that day, but by the next day, a storm with a cold front comes in and we are freezing. The temperatures are in the 60's! My friend's luggage shows up at our first port, Cozumel.
The airline was very dodgy about whether is would be there or not. Carnival tried to help her, gave her a voucher to buy essentials. My friend did buy travel insurance. Then the waves were to rough so we could not go to Belize or Mahogany Bay! Finally the weather started to calm down and made it to Costa Maya. We all got a 25% discount on our next cruise which I'm the only one to take that offer. This was the first time my friend was on a cruiseship and she said shewas never doing it again.
I really enjoyed the Sea Trek Underwater Helmet experience on Cozumel. Don't forget to take some money to buy the disc of your adventure. I know what happened was more of a weather fluke so I'm going again. Crew were nice, but I had a soda card. They require you to go to the bar and order there. It was a hassle, especially since it seemed those with these cards were, by my standards, considered low on the totem pole.
All the other customers were given drinks first, them myself. Its a good deal if you spend more than $50 on soda for the cruise, but by forcing you to get up and get it, I actually used the card less. Based on how much soda I bought, I paid less than what I paid for the card. The other thing is the sexual bias. Women in the shows are barely wearing anything, yet the guys are fulling dressed.
November 23 ~ 30, 2014
Port of Tampa, Florida
I arrived at the port around 10:00 AM. I went through the check in process without any major problems. Soon I was sitting in a holding area waiting for boarding to start. We were told that the ship arrived late and boarding will be delayed. I knew that was wrong as I saw the ship arrive at 7:30 AM on the webcam. Eventually we were allowed to board. I went to my room to drop my carry on luggage and freshen up. I had rented a scooter as my mobility is not as good as it used to be.
Soon I was on my way to get some lunch and take a look at the changes in this ship since my last cruise on her. She recently went in for her 2.0 upgrades. I saw the Red Frog Pub on deck 2 and thought I would visit at least once during the week. I was unable to keep that promise as I never found it open. I went to the main pool area and found "Guy's Burger Joint". A pleasantarea with little redwood picnic tables. It was busy here with many hungry cruisers. Next I saw the "Blue Iguana Cantina" also very busy as it was lunch time. The "Blue Iguana Tequila Bar" and the "Red Frog Rum Bar" were also busy and popular places in this pool area. Then there was the "Alchemy Bar" on deck 2 aft. I only saw it open twice.
I went into the Mermaid's Grille and looked around. The Deli offerings looked great as always. I looked around and found a salad bar and the Pizza Pirate and a buffet and Chef's Choice and Chopsticks which offered great Asian choices. I chose from the Buffet that day but throughout the week I tried most of the others. I admit I was at Chopstix three times during the week. I never went for the pizza since I discovered some time ago that the pizza from Pizza Pirate is tasteless. I am a big fan of the original pizza that was offered when Carnival first started offering pizza.
I continued on with my explorations and went looking for Muster Station "B" It was on deck 3 Port side. I was unable to get out there on my scooter as the base of the scooter was too low to clear the hump in the middle of the ramp. I saw a sign that also pointed out a place called "The Sunset Garden" as part of Muster Station "B". I went in there and found a pleasant little space with huge round windows and lovely hand painted tiles. I found a spot and waited there for the drill to begin. Once the drill was over I decided to finish checking out this pleasant place. I followed the hall way and it lead uphill and down hill and around curves. Eventually it came out on the other side of the hall from where I began. It was a clever way to use some space in the forward area that might have gone unused. I found myself in there several times during the week just to "get away from it all" for a little while.
My dining choice was as always "Your Time Dining" That was always served in The Normandie Restaurant upper level. This was on Deck 3 aft. The first night my dining companions were nice and very interesting people. We all decided to ask if we could sit at the same place with Eco as our server every night. It worked out well. For the most part the group remained the same every night.
I did not get to see anything in the Taj Mahal lounge. I found the "accessible" entrance to be difficult to maneuver on a scooter. They provided a ramp that lead up to the doors of Butterflies and to get into the Taj Mahal you had to make a sharp right turn in a narrow space. If you were not careful you could hit the post at the top of the ramp while making the turn. Also you had to be careful of not hitting the edge of the glass doors on the left. Someone had done this leaving a sharp and scary looking and dangerous edge on the door. This ramp made no sense at all as it made it easier to get into "Butterflies" but as you entered the doorway there it lead to stairs downward. On a scooter? Uh...... No thanks. I would have thought that to make a straight ramp up to the entrance of Taj Mahal would have made much more sense than an accessible ramp to a stairway but then..... what do I know? I went back there one more time to get to the VIFP party. I went early so I could safely make the turn to the Taj Mahal. I was safely up there and in a place where I could enter the Taj Mahal for the party. I was sitting there patiently waiting for time to go in. A blond man that was obviously staff came along and saw me sitting there waiting. He made a snide and hurtful remark about being there too early and went along inside. I was stunned and could not stop the tears. I made my way back down the ramp and left. I did not report him nor did I even try to maneuver my way up there again for anything.
This subject has never been discussed by me before but I think it is worthy of some discussion. As a person who has worked with and advocated for people with disabilities for a long time I am ashamed that I never noticed the lack of accessibility for them on cruise ships before. It took me having to be in that place myself to notice. As previously written in the last paragraph the accessibility ramp was a half hearted attempt at accommodating a population of people who need a bit of extra care. First we will start with tendering ports. We were scheduled for two on this cruise. I meekly accepted that I would have to stay aboard the ship at Belize and Grand Cayman. Why? Is it that hard to find tenders that would have a deck which is accessible to those with wheel chairs and scooters? Another thing that bothered me was there were NO excursions to accommodate people with mobility devices. If we are able to get off the ship we are left to explore just the areas around the ships. Usually these were shopping areas. Not a great thing for those of us that are just not into shopping. I can walk but I have to do so slowly and stop to rest and catch my breath a lot. I would never be able to make it to the pick up area for the excursion busses. We purchase tickets for cruises to foreign places and it would be nice if we could see those places. We want to see more than shopping areas at docks that are built to benefit the cruise line. If my opinion as a guest counts I think this is an area that demands quite a bit of improvement.
Dinner time Sunday evening. I went to the dining room and was escorted to a seat. I had delightful dining companions and really enjoyed my time with them. Eventually I looked at the windows and noticed that the lights were not moving past us. I thought this was odd as we were supposed to be moving down the channel to the gulf. I had not noticed that we had not even sail yet. We never got off until after 9:00 PM I was never able to learn why this was. In any case it did not affect the cruise for me at all. I went along enjoyed the ship and all it had to offer. We had no casino of course nor were the shops open but I managed to keep busy.
Monday we had a nice sunny day at sea. I enjoyed the pool area even though I did not swim. I also spent quite a bit of time in the Serenity area too and really relaxed out there just enjoying the quiet and the soothing music along with the sway of the ship over fairly calm water was better than a lullabye to a baby. Soon I drifted off to dreamland.
Tuesday dawned rainy and very windy. We were supposed to be in Belize that day. Upon arrival there we were told that it was too windy for transferring guests to the tenders and we would be sailing on towards our next stop at Mahogany Bay. So we had another sea day. I was unable to get off anyway because it was a tender port so I was unaffected by the change. I felt bad for those that were looking forward to this port. While I am thinking of this I wonder why people who cannot even get off the ship at certain ports are charged port taxes for that port at all.
While we were at Mahogany Bay it was raining and I decided to stay aboard even though I really wanted to see this port. I had never been there before. I just did not want to get soaked. So I spent the day keeping busy. At one point during the day it was announced that they secured a place for us at Costa Maya instead of Grand Cayman which was supposed to be our next stop. That was fine with me since I could not get off at Grand Cayman anyway. As we arrived at Costa Maya you guessed it, it began to rain again so I stayed aboard again.
I was enjoying my breakfast in the lido when we were in one of the ports. A family had stopped behind me to discuss their plans for the day. The boys who appeared to be around 9 and 10 years of age did not want to go ashore. The Mother told them it was okay they could stay aboard the ship. These kids were left loose on the ship all day and not in the care of Camp Carnival. I encountered these terrorists again when I was getting in the elevator on deck 9 and trying to get to deck one. One of them ran onto the elevator and pushed every button and ran out again. I was stuck stopping at every floor all the way to deck one.
I was saddened to see that the Renaissance decor was all but gone on this ship. When I was on this ship in 2007 I fell in love with the timeless artworks. Now just a few pieces remain.
Despite the fact that anything going on in Taj Mahal was difficult for me to get to and that Butterflies was impossible because of the stairs I did enjoy my cruise. It takes a lot for me not to enjoy being at sea. I do not understand why they have these places that are never or rarely used. I never saw the Red Frog Pub open at all during this cruise. Does it open just long enough to give the one free beer every day? The Taste Bar just what is it? I saw an empty cart that never had anyone or anything on it ever. The one thing that was open a lot was the photo shop. They were out and about poking cameras in our faces every chance they get. I always say no but they snap away anyway.
So we had rain and wind and some rough seas. So what? I never sweat the small stuff. Being at sea is what a cruise is all about for me. I put my faith in those that run the ship and of course the man upstairs to get us through safely to our destinations. I enjoyed the cruise and I will work on possibly getting a few things changed. I choose to take a few problems like accessibility and try to turn them into positives. Looking forward to my next cruise, possibly on the Liberty.
We traveled this October 2014 on Carnival Magic and like a dummy I did not lock up my costume jewelry thinking it was only valuable to me. They were between 23 to 70 years old. Now I admit I am really stupid but had them buried in a rather tall bag. Well when I got home 4 necklaces, a ring and some others items I probably do not know about were missing. They were in a cardboard box and a tie jewelry bag. The cruise line said that if the items are not found in 30 days they will be deemed "lost" and it is my word against theirs that I even had these items. In one of the pictures taken on the ship I was wearing one of the "lost" necklaces. My opinion is that the Carnival Staff knows of this policy so it is very easy to have items deemed "lost". Spread the word that Carnival Cruise Lines Policies make it easier for items to "lost" and be sure to lock up every item no matter how valuable they are.......
This was only my second cruise and was amazed at the size of the ship. Previously I was on the Fantasy, and boy what a difference.
We boarded in Port Canaveral FL, and compared to Charleston SC, it was a fast moving event. I do not think my wife and I stopped longer than 3 minutes at any point until we were on the ship. Leaving the ship after the cruise went even faster, we were on Deck 1 and carrier our bags, so we were the first group to debark. We were off the ship to the rental car office, had the car and going to breakfast before 0830 in the morning. We always stay an extra day after the cruise to enjoy the Florida Beaches, so the quicker we can get to that beach the happier we are.
The Fantasy staff I feel were a lot more attentive than what the staff on the Sunshine was, but that might of been because of the amount of guest. This was about the only complaint that I had for the whole cruise, so you know it must of been good.
Positives:Serenity Deck was the largest that I have seen on a ship. The Steak House was well worth the extra cost, we did find out that if you buy a bottle of wine they will keep it chilled for you until your next meal if you don't finish it. Burger Place was good, but really crowded at times.
All and All for my second Cruise I really enjoyed the time I spent on this ship.
October 2015 will be my 4th time on this ship. I love it!!
I got engaged on this ship! Married 7 months later and I could be more pleased with this ship and it's staff!!!
I have sailed on the Splendor 4 times with my 5th coming up on June 1, 2015. I like to book cabins in the forward area because we do your time dining and the dining room is in the front as well as the theater, guest services, atrium, the shops, casino, and lido pool.
To whom it may concern,
I do not even know where to start with how disappointed i am with the experience that i had over the weekend for my friends Bachelorette celebration on this cruise line. I have been on a couple cruises before with Royal Caribbean and i am always shared a positive experience with them. However, i did not have a positive experience at all with this cruise line and i am shocked.
Let me get started in telling you how rude the staff was to me and my guest. A few of the staff members were nice and helpful and i not sure if i just ran into these particular staff members when they were in a bad mood or what, but i cannot believe how unhelpful these people were.
The first issue started when we first checked into our rooms. There was a total of 5 girls. 3 in my room and 3 in the room right next to us. As soon as we walked into my room, the stater attendant introduced himself to us and was very nice at first. We asked him for a bucketof ice and then went to check out our friends room right next door. I saw that their beds were separated and thought that our bed in our room should be separated as well for the extra space.
Our Stater Attendant came back with the bucket and my friend asked him if it would be ok that we separated the bed in our room as well. He said yes. So, i go into our room and start separating the beds. I have been in customer service a long time and i know that these room attendants have a lot of people to help and rooms to take care of, so i had NO problem in doing it myself and it was super simple and easy to do. Thought i was doing this guy a favor. He walks into our room and asked me why i moved the beds, and i told him that i was just helping him out. He rolled his eyes at me and shut the door..... i was so confused and embarrassed. He comes back with sheets for the beds and i flat out asked him if i made him upset and he ignored me. I apologized to him and told him AGAIN that i was just trying to help and he still proceeded to ignore me. SO UNPROFESSIONAL! AND RUDE!
I had also asked him to pull down one of the bunk beds prior to all of this and he told me no. they do that later. I don't care when they have plans to do it... it was there now, and my friend wanted to get settled in.
After that, we went up to and purchase our alcohol packages. One of the girls in our room is a recovering alcoholic and since we have not seen her in years due to that fact that she lives in Seattle and works as a flight attendant so we never get to see her. She told us in the limo ride that she will not be drinking and we were totally respectful and fine with that and assumed that it would not be an issue.
We talked to the bar tender and he told my and my other friend Tyler that the only way we could get the alcohol package is if Asten purchased one as well.... we told him politely that she is a recovering alcoholic so she had already purchased the non-alcoholic package and would not be drinking alcohol. He told us that there was nothing he could do for us and that is the only way that we could purchase our packages is if she purchased one as well. We asked to speak with a manager and we spoke with a guy named Anthony who was supposedly the manager of the ship. This guy was so unhelpful and rude and told us the same thing. He would not help us. My friend Asten started crying and was so embarrassed and explained to him that she can and will sue Carnival for this and he just walked away.
Keep in mind, we did not know about her alcohol addiction and we did not know that we needed some form of doctors note in order for us to purchase our package prior or else this would have been taken care of. My friend Tyler is the agent that booked this trip for us and he would have made sure that this was taken care if he knew, but he didn't.
After my friend Asten calmed down from crying, my friend Tyler called the Carnival help line and spoke with no joke, FIVE different people including a manager by the name of Brittany and Tiffany telling him that there was nothing that they could do for us. He spent over an hour on the phone while we all sat there and waited for him which was absolutely ridiculous.
After he tried getting help over the phone and was unsuccessful, i tried calling to get help. I spoke with THREE different people and the last person i spoke with by the name of Amanda was the most helpful, but still did not ensure that our vacation would not leave a bad taste in our mouth. An hour later, she tells me that the only thing that they could do, if anything, is move one of the girls from the other room who also doesn't drink into our room and she made it clear that even this might not happen and that if it didn't that i would have to call the help line again. A WASTE OF TIME!
We decided to just forget it now that it was 7PM and we had been on the boat since 11:00AM trying to resolve this embarrassing matter to just go ahead and worry about the alcohol package the next day so we bought all of our drinks with the cash we had.
We went up to our rooms and changed and tried to start the day over. The first thing we did was go up to the bar to finally get a drink in and have some fun and the bar tender was the SLOWEST bar tender that i have ever met and i was standing there for 30 minutes trying to get her attention to order a freakin drink and the entire time she was just washing dishes and helping everyone else around me. She finally took my drink order and i waited another 20 minutes to get my FIRST drink. I was so irritated at this point and still tipped her and walked away. The rest of the night was just irritating from that point on and i did not want to talk to or deal with anyone that worked on that ship.
The next day we had ordered for our breakfast to be delivered at a certain time and it was over an hour late and we were missing half of our order... not to mention, they kep bringing us only two glasses and only two silverwear set even though there were THREE of us in the room. So we kept having to wait and have the guy come back so we could begin enjoying our food. This happened every morning from that point on.
The food at the buffet was horrible. We went to the Captains dinner where i had Lobster and spaghetti. The lobster tasted like salted rubber. It was uneatable. I noticed that the spaghetti was from the buffet from the previous day! It was disgusting. It took forever to get our drinks. yet again. Needles to say, i barely ate the entire trip.
This same night, my best friend, the bachelorette had lost her ring. She lost in between us being the jacuzzi and then walking back to our room. We suggested that she talks to the customer service at the front desk to help her. These people were rude and not helpful at all what so ever. So told them exactly where she was and if someone could help her look in the spa for the ring and they told her that no one could help until they drained the spa at 11PM. She was crying her eyes out and everyone around her including guest noticed and no one but the actual guest tried helping her. The customer service employee just WALKED AWAY FROM HER! we were shocked. Luckily, we found her ring back in the room, but we are shocked with how unhelpful these employee's were. Not to mention, one of the carnival papers in our room specifically state that " Our friendly staff members are here to assist and help our valued guest with any lost or stolen items". Bunch of bull.
So after that lovely event happened, we went and purchased our alcohol packages. We then found out that we are only allowed to have 15 drinks per day and then we are cut off... now, i do not need 15 drinks as 4 are more than enough for me, but this is just stupid.
This cruise line is all about taking money from people and being as unhelpful as you can possibly be.
I cannot tell you how many time i was approached by an employee trying to sell me one of those souvenir drinks and then giving me a bad look for not getting one and then not being quick to get me the drinks that i wanted to order because i did not purchase the souvenir cups.
Like i said, the food was terrible. The staff was unhelpful and rude. The rooms were dirty. The bathrooms wreaked of sewage the ENTIRE time.
We also had room attendants come into our room at random time thinking that no one was in there, yet they did not clean or remove any dirty towels. WHY WERE THEY IN THERE THEN!?
The second day of our trip, the beds were made, but the sheets were not changed. We asked one of the employees passing by and he told us that they make the beds early in the day and then they actually change the sheets later on in the day. Okay fine. When we came back later that night, i had dirty sheets on my bed. They were not the same sheets that i had slept on. They were dirty sheets with brown stains all over it. We called and asked the room attendant to change the sheets again... and guess what.... he never came. I just took the sheets off and set them in the hallway. The next day when they paid their little " cleaning" visit, they decided to put new sheets on.
By the way, that same night our room attendant came to drop off a bucket of ice that we had asked for and spent 20 minutes over the phone calling the Stater room attendant line and the front desk which rang FOREVER and when he saw that we had decided to push our beds together because we all wanted to watch a movie together he says " ummm... i thought you wanted your beds separated......" with attitude. I told him " yes, we did. Now we are watching a movie and we all cannot see the screen unless they are pushed together..." he rolled his eyes at me and walked away. Surprise Surprise.
AGAIN, i am so SHOCKED with how unprofessional the staff is.
Now, getting off the boat was the dumbest process i have ever been involved in.
We had to get into a line which started at the actual exit and then form a line that went through several different hallways. This has to be the worst idea if there were to ever be a fire on board while being stuck in these stuffy hallways with a bunch of people and their luggage while the room attendants are running around, squeezing by trying to clean the rooms next to us. My friend Julie is VERY Claustrophobic. She started hyperventilating and went in tears once we started in the 4th hallway and she could see that we were only making our way to yet another hallway. The guest around us were trying comfort her and we went and grabbed her which took forever since there were people everywhere. We suggested that she waited near the exit to get some air and Julie told us that an employee came over to comfort her, kissed her hand and told her that everything was going to be ok. Yet he did not help in anyway to try and get her off the boat any quicker or to the outside air so that her panic attack would subside. He just kisses her and then tells her to sit down and walks away.
Royal Caribbean is the only cruise line that i will travel on from this point on and i will continue to tell everyone i know what a horrible experience i had with Carnival and how rude and unhelpful the staff is. Prior to this trip, which i am glad i was able to take first to experience this, i was going to purchase a cruise for my parents to take in May. Screw that. Not happening.
Not that anyone at the corporate office cares, and i am sure none of the management team will see this, so i will also be posting this on every review site possible to spread the word and i will continue to do it.
Thank you for nothing,
A VERY unhappy guest.
Wife and I stayed at the Hilton garden inn cruise port/airport hotel in dania ,beach fl. the day before our cruise. We had breakfastthe day of the cruise at burger king next door. For 10 dollars a person we used the hotel shuttle to port everglades to cruise on the carnival freedom. Nice hotel, we will stay here for our next cruise out of ft. Lauderdale. The cruise was our 7 th cruise with Carnival since 1999.
Freedom was a great name for this cruise because that is the way we felt during this vacation.
Starting with our cabin 1051 on the panorama deck, the balcony view was great for taking pics when coming into a port, Plenty of storage space in the closet and under the bed for 3 full suitcases. The room attendant cleaned out the mini-fridge so we could store our soda and liquor supplies. The room along with the bathroom was big enough for DW and I to share on this cruise. We cruised on the Conquest last year and having the Serenity adult only retreat available on this cruise was a added plus, as we areearly risers we were able to use a lot of the ships facilities without felling rushed or crowded.
The DW and I really enjoyed the food on this cruise.
Took a taxi tour of st. maarten around the island which made for a fun day. The next day DW and I took the st. kitts scenic railroad tour around the island, this was a very fun and informative way to spend a day on st kitt. The next day was at san juan ,we just walked around downtown in and out of several stores before stopping in the Sheraton for a little casino time. Last but not least grand turk was probably DW favorite stop. Took a taxi tour of this small island, then went to the beach bar were DW and I shared a plate full of jerk pork prepared outside of the bar, GREAT DISH!!.
As on past cruises DW and I met and hung out with several of our fellow cruisers. Bruno and Brenda we really had a great time with you guys. DW and I had so much FUN on this cruise, Thanks CARNIVAL for another great vacation. Another carnival cruise in 2017 lord willing.