October 2015 - 6 Night Western Caribbean (Ft. Lauderdale Roundtrip) Cruise on Carnival Conquest
IT wasn't my best time on Carnival
It all started from the 2 hour wait to get on the ship. Porting out of Fort Lauderdale, wasn't the most practical place to be waiting especially for seniors and people with disabilities. Almost 4k people went on this trip and to not have a better way to get this size on a ship, is just unacceptable in 2015. There were only maybe 15-20 waiting seats, unreal! Anywho, I thought once we got on the ship, the fun and enjoyment would began. So i'm gonna try and make this long story Medium. I have traveled with Carnival 5 times before and always enjoyed my self, to the festivities, to the food and the service. Well, I haven't been since 2011 and alot has changed. Lets get to it. The negatives. When you purchase a beverage, and you get your receipt, Carnival automatically puts a gratuity of 15% on it. Now, I am not a heavy drinker and these people are getting paid by Carnival, so this is not a Bar where the waiter is strictly relying on tips. WE are already charged a pre-paid gratuity and however Carnival distributes that amongst their employees, thats should be Carnival's responsibility. I should be able to tip who I want to tip. This company makes billions of dollars off of travelers and should be able to pay their employees decent. It shouldn't fall on the Travelers to tip every single time they use the ships services, just greedy. I'm sorry, but I know a waiters job is never easy, and I tip when a good job is done and that should be at my discretion not the greedy corporation. Next, on the Lido deck, on several days, there was a maintenance person fixing tiles. This wasn't a little tile popped up, this repair person was chipping the tiles up and replacing them. Where they do that at?? On Carnival..lol. I mean to do this where the food is being served and not wait till the end of the day at least where theres less people. That was just unsanitary. Also, on several occasions, sometimes I would get lost and see a staff person and ask them which direction the dining was, and most of the time they would say they were new to the ship or they say I don't know....huh?? Next, when we arrived LATE to Grand Cayman, we were only given 4-5 hours to do whatever we could do on the island. Not much time. Alot of peoples excursions were refunded. i understand after a storm, things like this happen, but for the Captain not to make it up to the travelers and stay longer or try and give us a longer day on the next island just SUCKED. It was so sunny in Grand Cayman too. Lastly, the satellite cable hardly ever worked, so nothing to watch or order to watch and coming back to the Fort Lauderdale port, it didn't matter what time you left the ship, if you got off at 9am, 10am, you were not going to get off the ship and go through customs quickly. It took over 1 hour. So now I got the negatives out the way and Carnival could not redeem themselves on this trip, throughout it all I still made the best of this vacation. So the goodies as always, hands down: The food was on point every night, the waiters at dining were upbeat and fun as always. I live in California and don't like pacific ocean seafood, so you know I was ordering seafood every night..lol..Oh and the director Jimmy, he was the main person to keep the fun/ entertainment going, he was fantastic. Thanks for trying to keep everyone upbeat and enthusiastic everyday Jimmy. That is an exhausting job. I can't say for each day it was non-stop fun which I was always use to from previous trips on Carnival, but there was just bits and pieces that I enjoyed. For example, me and my sister did latin night and was in a contest. Comedy and karaoke and movie night was fun. This was my first family trip with my sisters, mom and friend and this was my mother friend and sister's first trip. I just hope this didn't turn them away from going on cruises in the future.