Excellent First Family Cruise

Carnival Elation Cruise Review to Caribbean - Eastern

Cruises: 1 cruise (first)
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 23

Overall rating:

4.7 out of 5
Verified Review
Carnival Elation

5 Night Eastern Caribbean (Port Canaveral Roundtrip)

Sail date: December 23, 2019

Ship: Carnival Elation

Cabin type: Inside

Cabin number: E25

Traveled as: Family (older children)

Reviewed: 1 year ago

Review summary

This was my family's first cruise together. The Elation is a great ship but it is a bit older which has it's own challenges. If I would have researched a bit more, I would have booked 2 cabins (one with 2 teenage girls is a little too small) but we were all able to sleep comfortably. Adding the drink packages (Bottomless Bubbles and CHEERS!) saved a lot of money and was well worth it during the 5 days. The meal selections were very nice and well prepared. The ports of call were really nice. Our favorite was Grand Turk which has a wonderful beach area and a poolside next to Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville which was very convenient. In both ports, the food was a bit expensive but was expected. Onboard Elation, our director, Jen was fantastic and our stateroom stewart, Arnold, was very helpful and did an awesome job. We cruised during the Christmas holiday and the ship was decorated very nicely and there were a lot of activities for the family. The shows were really nice and the dancers were awesome. My 6 year old enjoyed hanging out at the kids only area but my 2 teenagers were fine with just hanging out poolside and enjoying the buffets and just relaxing. I would say the only downside was the stateroom was too small and the toilet has a funny smell just because of the system that is used onboard. Other than that, we look forward to booking our next cruise with Carnival.


5 out of 5
Very easy to get through and embark the vessel.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

5 out of 5
We visited the main dining 3 out of the 5 nights and enjoyed the convenience of the buffets, 24 hour pizza, 24 hour ice cream, and the burger joint they have onboard. The Bottomless Bubbles and CHEERS! package is a definite must have and pays for itself very easily.

Onboard Activities

4 out of 5
The pool/hot tubs were small but adequate. Definitely well maintained. I did utilize the fitness area and the equipment is well kept and easy to operate.


5 out of 5
Our director, Jen was amazing. She made sure that the upcoming major events were announced well in advance to allow for people to make all the shows and enjoy the experience. The poolside DJ was very good and played good music. The violinist group ws very nice as well. The shows were really nice and entertaining.

Children's Programs

5 out of 5
My youngest daughter really enjoyed her club and was even able to be apart of the Holiday show. She had a great time. The late night activities did have a small fee but it was worth it.

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
The service from the staff was genuine and very great. Our cabin stewart, Arnold was very helpful and did an awesome job making sure that our cabin was well maintained and was always available if we needed anything like extra towels. The bartenders that we had on our deck (7, Satria) was amazing and made the best drinks.

Ship Quality

4 out of 5
The ship itself is a little older which comes with it's own challenges. For a 21 year old ship, it was not too bad. The layout was very easy to figure out after being onboard for a few hours. Mostly everything was on decks 8-10.

Cabin / Stateroom

4 out of 5
The size of the stateroom was a little too small for all 5 of us (2 teenage girls) but it slept all 5 of us comfortably. A little renovation may be needed in the bathroom area but overall it was good. Always clean because of our great cabin stewart, Arnold.

Ship tip

If you do pick the Elation, it is one of the smaller Carnival ships in the fleet so you may experience a little more rocking than normal. Be prepared for any sea sickness or motion sickness by purchasing the medication early. Onboard, it is a little pricey.

Ports of call

Port Canaveral, Florida

5 out of 5
Only issue I had it trying to figure out which terminal we actually pulled into for our Uber driver to pick us up. If you have a flight from MCO, the ride is about 45 mins from Port Canaveral.

Amber Cove (Puerto Plata), Dominican Republic

4 out of 5
This was a nice area but the selection for souvenirs was not so good. Since we pulled in there on Christmas day we decided to stay close to the ship and just enjoy the pool area which was really nice.

Grand Turk Island

5 out of 5
Loved Grand Turk. The convenience of having jimmy Buffet's Margarittaville right next to the pool was really nice. The beach there was wonderful. Our excursion got canceled because the seas were too rough but we did a local tour and it was very nice to see the island and learn a little about the area.


4 out of 5
The process for customs is something you cannot avoid but be prepared for a long wait there.
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