I have cruised 5 times in the past 7 years. Three times with Princess, once with Celebrity and once with RCL. I am thinking of doing a Cruise this fall on the Carnival Spirit to Mexico but I am a little hesitant to do so. It seems that Carnival is the brunt of many off handed sayings on the other lines I have been on. Is there any basis for this or should I just go?
I think you'll find a lot of Carnival fans that would say, go for it! For awhile now, I've heard mostly favorable things from Carnival cruisers, one being that the food is very good, so I'd give it a try and its a new ship, so it won't be all that glizty decor that I know I would not care for.
Location: Wisconsin....about 100 miles south of the Frozen Tundra and 70 miles east of Camp Randall
Re: Carnival Cruises
Donna - even the newer Carnival ships are glitzy - not as bad as the older ones, but still they are glitzy...nothing like Celebrity, Princess or RCCL. I've been on both the Fantasy and the Legend......imho they can't compare to the ships of the above mentioned lines. Food is subjective - let's just say I didn't starve on the Legend and leave it at that. Carnival has a good product that a lot of people find to their liking......after two cruises with them I guess they are just not my cup of tea, but there was nothing really wrong with them, I just prefer Celebrity and Princess over them.
Carnival Breeze with Ray Band Aerogirl 5/4/14!
I was on the Carnival Spirit last year. I didn't find the decor to be "glitzy". If you are a Princess and Celebrity fan you may find the decorating style to be a little "off beat", but overall - it's an interesting and easy to navigate ship. The cabins are large. The staff and crew were courteous and friendly. Dining room service was always excellent. The alternative restaurant was outstanding- service there was top notch and the environment was upscale and romantic.
If you prefer a more adult atmosphere- the only thing I would suggest is sailing at a time when schools are in session.
I prefer Princess to Carnival (overall atmosphere) - that said - I would sail on the Spirit (or Spirit class ship) again. I thought the food on the Spirit was every bit as good - and sometimes better! I enjoyed the size of the ship as well.
Please feel free to ask me anything. I'll give you honest answers. I have pictures in the gallery (if you can find them from last year - lol!)
Good luck in whatever you decide!
booking soon - 10th anniversary cruise in August....
Out of 5 cruises, 4 were Carnival. We found the food and service to be good and the shows on some ships were better than others but overall we like CCL. It will depend on your likes/dislikes. Give them a try and see what you think. Happy sailing!
its all about personal preference. i think that you will be some what dissapointed in Carnival having sailed on Celebrity (especially) Princess and HAL. To me its like comparing the Ritz(Celebrity) to a Holiday Inn(Carnival) nothing wrong with either just different that's all. I found that the service and staff on Princess was far better than that of Carnival, again this my opinion, the decision is totally yours, you might want to consider RCCL for something different also.
Not only is each line differant somewhat, but each ship and yes, even every cruise. We are doing our 21st cruise in six years next week and most of them have been on CCL. We are not hard partiers nor drinkers but do enjoy having something to do whenever we want. Everything is subjective as others have stated but to us the best food, entertainment, and comfort level we have found on Carnival. HAL was very nice but very much geared towards the much older crowd. (we are in our 50's BTW), Celebrity was very boring with little to nothing to do and too many pretentious snobs onboard. (again, this was more an indication of THAT one cruise than Celebrity in general), NCL was very poor in everything but the entertainment, again it was the ship Norway that we blame and not the line overall. Go on Carnival and enjoy, you may love it, or it may not be exactly what you want but you will still have a great time. The only ships or cruises I suggest one stay away from if they do not want nearly non-stop partying are the three and four day cruises, and that is will all the lines that do them.
Would a fair comparsion be that Carnival Cruise Lines is like a Holiday Inn , while Royal Carribbean is an Embassy Suites? Also are all Carnival ships decked out in 1970's burnt orange? This is what I seem to see in ads, etc.
I have cruised on Carnival Triumph and Victory. They were almost exactly alike in every way. Subsequent to those we were on RCCL Monarch of the Seas, and it was extremely similar to the CCL ships (IMHO). The food on all three was excellent; the shows ranged in quality, but overall they were all very nice cruises and I would recommend either to anyone. I was just on HAL and LOVED the cabin but did not like the long buffet lines, shortness of pool chaises, and lack of late-night munchies available on the other lines. The only way you will know for sure is to try it for yourself and make your own assessment. There are several inexpensive 4- and 5-nighters that may be a good way to 'test the waters' (no pun intended!).
I've been on two Carnival cruises on different ships, launched in 1986 and 1990, and I don't recall seeing any burnt orange anywhere on either ship. Yes, some of the colors are gaudy, but nothing is outdated or 70s-style. The keyword for Carnival is "Vegas-style."
Land Cruise, Britain and Belgium
Now posting as MichelleP.
I have cruised Princess, Celebrity,NCL and Carnival. My personal preference is Princess but I had a great time on Carnival and I am booked on them again. The meals I had on Carnival were very good as well as on Princess and NCL. I cannot say the food on the one sailing on Celebrity was good because it was not. I have had a great time on all the cruise lines. I would not hesitate to cruise on Carnival again.
I did find that most of the negatives are heard about Carnival were not true. It can be a little noisy and a few other problems when schools are out and the ship is full of college kids and families. If you are interested in trying Carnival I say book a Carnival cruise and go with an open mind. I think you may be surprised at how good a job Carnival does.
I've only cruised twice, both on Carnival, both with different experiences. I loved the Carnival Spirit and thought it was a wonderful ship, great service, clean and pretty. I did NOT like the Ecstacy. I thought it was full of plastic and it did have a distasteful odor everywhere.
I think there's a big difference between the old and new Carnival ships, so go ahead and give it a try.
We went ahead an booked the Carnival Cruise for Mexico on 10/24 of this year. Good price for us as we live in San Diego! I am going to give it a try and believe me we have three other couples going so we should have a great time!
I have been on Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity. They are different experiences, but enjoyed them all. The food on Carnival has improved over the years, the entertainment is good and if you select a newer ship, should be fine. You can save a little money and have a great time. The dress tends to be a bit more casual. Less of a party atmosphere if you stay away from shorter cruises. Give it a try.
The only CCL ship I have been on with orange as it's main color is the Elation. I hate orange and therefore did not care for the decor of this ship. All ships have a different "theme" and color. I want to sail on the one that has the colors of the ocean because those are my favorite colors. There are several sites with 360 pics of the ships interiors so you could get an idea somewhat of what's in store.
As others have stated, go ahead and give one of Carnival's new Spirit class ships a try. I have sailed 5 Celebirty, 3 RCCL, 2 Princess and now 2 Carnival ships in 8 years. The Pride & Legend are not glitzy in my definition. Food variety and availability was the best of all our cruises on these CCL ships- hot, varied, and available a lot longer than on Celebrity ships.
Carnival's Fun ship logo can mean different things to different people. I too found a very good mix of singles, families, couples and seniors on both of our cruises which were at two different primary weeks of the cruising season. Regular and balcony cabins on these two Carnival ships are larger than all of the comparible cabins on the other 3 lines. IMHO Carnival offers something for everyone. If you like sunshine but relaxing atmosphere, pick the stern pool area during the day. If you like to listen to the Caribbean beat, choose the pool without the Bandstand. You can still hear the music but don't have to put up with the loud bass beat! Every crew member we encountered had a smile and a pleasant greeting which is not the case on Celebrity.
going on ccl ectascy on June 6 will give a full review going on 3 day to Baja Mexico we are a first timer and looking forward to it have not received docs yet and paid in full already and do not have cabin choice yet is that unusual we booked through ccl instead of a TA was that a good idea or not please reply soon
I'd say go for it. The Spirit is a new ship; we were on it for New Years Eve two years ago and had a great time. For many years, my husband and I stopped going on Carnival because of a lot of problems, but now they seem to be a lot better with everything now. We have our 30th cruise booked with Carnival for this summer to Bermuda and I'm really looking forward to it. We're in our mid-50's and our last cruise was this year in March on Princess to Hawaii. After that 15 day cruise, where eveyone seemed very old, we decided to go back to RCCL and Carnival, where we don't have to be careful waking everyone up after lunch (everyone was sleeping on deck, in the library, everywhere) on the last Princess cruise we were on. We go on cruises to have fun, not to be careful not to make any noise waking people up in the middle of the day........You won't be disappointed if you take the cruise you're thinking of taking. I don't think my husband and I are going to take Princess anymore unless we get a really good deal. We were on a 14 day Hawaii cruise with RCCL and they had things to do for the "at sea days" and Princess did not. We cruise about twice a year and after having a problem with NCL and not getting a response back, we're sticking with RCCL and Carnival. I must admit RCCL is my favorite cruise line of all the ones we've tried. Happy Cruising.......
I was like you, reluctant to go on a Carnival Cruise. I had always heard it was a "polyester" group - no offense to anyone, please - and I was worried it was going to be non-stop partying. However, the price was right and since then I've been on three Carnival Cruises in the past year. The food was good, entertainment was good, the ports were the same as the other ships. I've been on RCCL (1), NCL (2), Princess (1), Celebrity (2), HAL (2), Royal Olympic (1), and Carnival (3) - they all have positives & negatives as anything would. I wouldn't hesitate booking on any of these lines if the ports and price were right.
I found the Carnival Spirit to be as beautiful as the Royal Caribbean Radiance. The big difference is the crew members. While there are some crew members that ranks with Royal Caribbean Radiance, the vast majority of Radiance crew members will make your cruise a excellent experience.
It is all about personal preference and experiences. I too "jumped" ship and our last two cruises have been on the Carnival Pride and Legend. These brand new ships are not glitzy at all. Other than the over usage of Urns on the Legend, you do not see blinking stobe lights and bright colors used accept maybe in the Disco. I even thought Medas Lair was wild and I don't frequent a disco! The cabins are great and dining rooms are elegant. Food was fine and our service staff aimed to please. The Supper club is definetly on an equal scale to the Millennium class of Celebrity with Entertainment and Dancing available in this fee based supper club. There is more "things to do". Fun is different for everyone; young, singles, familes and seniors. If the price is right, I would not hesitate to give Carnival a try. Personally, I don't like what Personal choice on Princess has done to traditional cruising. However Princess does offer a decent product but not my top choice out of 12 cruises.
In 23 cruises, I have enjoyed them all even the one that I jumped ship on. It was an old converted cargo ship. Food was cold and room was too small to do anything. I went because it was for the crippled children's hospital benefit. Jumped in Veracruz, flew dto Mexico City and had a wonderful time before coming back. Two weeks later I hear from Immigration wanting to know how I got back in the country. The ships people knew of our departure. They made the arrangements, but probably failed to tell someone. Can't remembet the name of the ship.
I still think there is no such thing as a bad cruise, unless the ship sinks. I have also been on a cruise ship that hit another ship. Delayed us 7 hours and missed a port but the excitement was something interesting.
I have been on 21 cruises, CCL,RC,and Disney. I really haven't noticed much of a difference. Granted there are slight differences and similarities in each cruise line. As for fun I myself like Carnival. I hated Disney, seems your just paying for the name. I find that a cruise is what you make of it. The worst part of Carnival and Royal C was great. Just go and compare.
I've enjoyed reading this thread! I'm going on my first Carnival cruise in Sept. on the new Glory! I've cruised NCL, RCI, Princess, Celebrity and Costa and in the past was not anxious to try Carnival. Now with the new ships, better reports about the food and overall experience, I figure why not give them a try!
I enjoyed the Atlantica which Farcus designed! Yes, rather gaudy and bright, but hard not to be cheerful with all those colors!
I've never had a bad cruise but I've enjoyed some alot more than others. In terms of personable, friendly and service, I put Celebrity on the bottom of my list. I will not cruise with them again unless the price is bottom of the barrel and I go with a group. Very quiet, too subdued, boring ship, just not my taste. They talk elegant, maybe to some!
I really like Princess and RCI, I don't hesitate to book a cruise with them ever. I'm really looking forward to my Glory cruise!
Hopefully we will join you on that date. I have been in touch with some of the staff that are now onboard and they seem to like the ship so far. I hope that we can get some interior photos soon. One of our staff will be onboard for the inagural cruise and hopefully she will take some great photos to be posted on this website