Cruise Review For April 2008
Ship: Carnival Fantasy
Number of nights: 5
Day 1- New Orleans, LA
Day 2- At Sea
Day 3- Progreso, Mexico
Day 4- Cozumel, Mexico
Day 5- At Sea
My first view of the ship was at 9:42am. By 10:02am we paid for parking at the terminal parking garage and the porter was taking our luggage. The check in process began at 10:30am sharp and we were checked in and ready to go by 10:42am. We were soon after informed that boarding would not begin until 11:30am and we were to sit in the 4th row due to a wedding party. At 11:25am the wedding party were beginning to board so by 11:33am my photo had been taken for my sail and sign card and I was continuing up the gangway to my home for the next week. I was asked to show my drivers license several times along with my sail and sign card. At check in of course, but when I got in line for my photo for my sail and sign card, once on the gangway, & once again coming aboard the ship. I first stepped foot on the ship at 11:42am exactly 2 hours after my first view of the ship. So basically it was a complete breeze no trouble at all and my parents voted Port of New Orleans their favorite to date for embarkation.
When I first stepped into the atrium I was in awe. I love it when I first step foot on a ship. I get this overwhelming joy. There hasn't been a ship yet that I have not absolutely loved. The lobby wasn't exactly something I'm use to due to I have been on bigger Carnival ships, but it was gorgeous in it's own way. I was greeted by friendly crew members and alot of smiles. I did get lost several times within the first 2 hours of being onboard. The first thing that my family done was eat of course. The welcome aboard buffet on the Lido deck was delicious. My parents wandered off to purchase 3 fountain fun cards, one for my dad and then the other two were for my sister & I. Overall the ship was very clean and the crew extremely friendly. We were not able to go to our cabins until 1:30pm sharp. Once in the cabin my sister and I just kinda crashed for almost an hour from pure exhaustion.
The food onboard the Fantasy was top notch. Everything was always easily accessed at all times. The lido buffet was always delicious at whatever meal you would like to attend on the lido. The Jubilee Dining Room dinner seating was at 5:45pm at table number 257. The odd table numbers were on the blue team and the even were the red team. Each night at dinner I always tried to order something different or something that I haven't ever tried before. Each night I was always very pleased with the selections that I chose. The head waitress Viktorija was always ready with a smile and always had a suggestion for each meal. I do suggest if you are stuck on deciding between two items ask your waitstaff they are more than happy to give their opinion. Breakfast I always had in the sit down breakfast in the Celebration Dining Room and it was delicious! Lunch I usually went for pizza or at the deli. Each had a great menu to choose from. The food on the ship was excellent no bad reviews here.
Fountain Fun Packages:
For anyone who isn’t familiar with this program, it offers an unlimited soda, juice, water and tea package featuring Coke® products. (Juice, water and tea are always free). The cost is $4.00 per day for children 17 and under and is $6.00 per day for adults 18+. If you are an avid or social consumer of soft drinks, I highly recommend purchasing the package, as the cost of a canned coke product onboard is around $2.00. The Carnival mugs were an extra charge of $4.75.
We booked an interior cabin on the main deck and were upgraded to a interior on the empress deck. Our cabin number was E205. Our cabin steward was very friendly and he always seemed to be in the hall working on someone's cabin. My sister and I shared the cabin and was very spacious for the two of us. We had two large suitcases 2 garmet bags and one carry on. The cabin has 3 closets which were put to very great use and 5 small drawers in the vanity. Each night we would enter our room and there would be a towel animal of some kind. There was actually 3 mornings of the cruise that after breakfast I would return back to my room to get whatever needed for the day and there would be another towel animal on my bed with some extra mints. This was always happily welcomed in our cabin we just love those animals
The entertainment options on this ship were more than expected. The welcome aboard show was wonderful. The comedian was absolutely hilarious. He was definitely from the south as you could immediately tell by his accent. He had the entire room laughing from the beginnging to the end. The other 2 shows were wonderful, we really enjoyed both of them.
The activities were excellent in my opinion. Some of these included the Sail Away party where everyone learned that to be outgoing and make a fool of themselves was the only way to go. The Deck party on night 4 was so funny, & the Men’s Hairy Chest Contest. The coordinators of these activities, as well as the participants were a load of fun and made the cruise just that much better.
Pools and Recreation:
The Carnival Fantasy has 2 pools, a forward and an aft pool. Both are small but kept clean and usually packed! The Fantasy also has 3 whirlpools located between the forward and aft pools. There was a miniture golf course, ping pong table, basket ball court, and Shuffle board. You were required to go to the lido deck mid ship to retrieve any of the equipment needed for each game, and also required to give them your sail and sign card in case something happened to the equipment.
My thanks goes to our cabin steward, head waiter, waiter and assistant waiter as well as all of the other staff and crew that made our vacation an overall success. I absolutely loved my teen director Timmy. He was always ready to do whatever to make the 7 teens in the club have a great time.
The activities started around 1pm for club o2. There was only 20 teens onboard and only 6-9 teens in the club each night. It stayed open until midnight every night. Very few attended the activities in the day so we improvised each time. Timmy was excellent at making the activities so much fun considering the number of people he had to deal with. Between the 2 of us we got everyone comfortable and well associated with one another. Club o2 is my favorite part of the entire cruise I always have such a great time and I will be really upset when I finally turn 18
Ports of Call:
At first I was very unsure to whether I was even going to get off in this port. I was there once 10 years ago and that visit was enough for me. Well my mom decided that she wanted to do a shore excursion, well 90% of them are about 5-8 hours long. I really didn't want to be in the port for that long. She finally picked an excursion that was approximately 3 1/2- 4 hours long. We went on the buggy beach break. That was one of the best excursions I have ever taken. We went driving off road for about 3 hours. Afterwards we went back to the private beach were there was an open bar and 2 pools. It was very relaxing and extremely fun. I do suggest if you are going to do any shopping do it on the pier right before you head to get back on the ship.
This was my 5th visit to Cozumel. My mom once again booked an excursion. We went on the Playa Mia beach break deluxe. Personally this was not my favorite excursion I have been on. There was jet ski's that was there for your use at a $100 an hour. The water was beautiful as usual. The snorkeling was ok you had to swim out about 200 yards to even see much of any sealife, and it was about 15-20 feet deep so get a life vest before swimming out there. The water activities such as kayaking, peddleboats, hobiecats, and water mats/rafts were to your use at any time after signing a waiver. There was also a iceburg rock climbing wall in the water, and this was a good swim as well I would say about 100 yards out and the water was about 10 foot. The water trampoline was about 50 yards out and once again the water was around 10 foot, but the trampoline was unavailable for use due to a rip in the trampoline. There was also an open bar and buffet included in the price for the deluxe package. After spending a while there we caught a bus back to the dock. We had about 2 1/2 hours to shop before heading back to the ship. We docked within walking distance of downtown shopping and Senor Frogs. Overall in Cozumel we had a great time even though the shore excursion wasn't a favorite.
It’s a sad time when you have to pack your bags and head for home. My parents decided that we were going to do the self-assist debarkation. Wow do I regret that..haha. My suitcase weighed probably as much as I do, plus I still had my carry-on suitcase. So it was difficult for myself and my sister as well. We woke up at around 6am had breakfast in the Celebration Dining Room. The waiters there were extremely prompt. We just got done eating our breakfast when we heard the announcement that we were in the process of being cleared by customs. We headed back to our room and not even 10 minutes later the announcement came over the intercom that the self assist passengers were ready to debark. The floor that we stayed on for the week is the same floor we got on and off the ship. This was extremely easy and fast. They started the debarkation at 7:30am for self assist and we were off the ship and in our vehicle packed and ready to go by 8:30am. Which was not that bad it took around 25 minutes standing in line to go through customs and then 10 minutes at customs. The rest was down hill from there. This was a fast and easy debarkation and very organized.
My experience on the Carnival Fantasy was excellent. Even though I have been on the larger classes of Carnival's Fun Ships I really enjoyed this ship. The ship wasn't too big and wasn't too small. The crew was friendly and always had a wonderful attitude and always ready to help anyone that had any questions. I loved the Fantasy and enjoyed every minute onboard. The only thing that made me a little upset was the amount of teens. I know Carnival has nothing to do with that but still. I had a great time with the teens that I met and I think that Timmy went over and beyond to make everyone have a great time. I give this cruise a 9 of 10 stars. Great job Carnival