Carnival Imagination Cruise Review to Caribbean

Deck Hand

1 cruise (first)


Helpful Votes

3 out of 5

A cruise that need lot of work

Sail Date: August 11, 2008

Reviewed: 8 years ago

Traveled As: Family w/young children

Room Type: Oceanview

It was my impression that cruise pampers their guests. This was not my experience. We stand in line for everything, to get information, food, check in-check out before and after excursion. Spent most of our fun time in the lines.
It was also my impression that cruises are fun for children, the staff is well trained and take good care of the children. I had a wrong impression. We have a little one who could have played in the group, but after the first day our little one refused to go there. The staff was not concerned that we were not able to leave the child with them. None of them tried to talk to our little one to keep him with them. They were only concerned about check in-check out. Because of this we were not able to enjoy some of the activities on the cruise. This was perhaps the most unsatisfying experience we had. When I mentioned my concern to their child care staff, they were clueless and didn't offer any solutions.
The pool on the ship was a very small one with 5ft6in depth, so no shallow pool for little ones. Oh yes, the day care people did not take children to pool. That was parents' responsibilities. The pool being small was another disappointment. Since it was small, it was crowded, could not enjoy it. I spent hardly 15 min in the pool on the first day.
The cabins were very small. We had stateroom with a window with total of 4 beds, with two on the wall. We bump our head on those two beds very frequently. I have heard from other guests that other cruise lines have larger cabins.
The room service was not great. Many times when I called it was busy. When call answered, it took them 40 to 50 min to deliver food. In that much amount of time, I could go up to the deck and get food myself. Also the food was cold by the time we got to the room. First two nights we left a tag on the door stating what will we need for breakfast and what time. Both morning the breakfast didn't arrive. We had to call in the morning once again with busy tone, hold and finally after 40 min we had received just coffee and toast. When we prearrange our breakfast with room service we had planned our day accordingly. With this experience we were late in our shore excursions. If we choose not to use room service and go up to the deck for breakfast, we had spent more time waiting in line. So there was not any winning solution.
For everything we needed, we had to go from one end to another of the ship. We also spent a good amount of time searching each other on the ship. It would have been nice to have a communication facility onboard. I could not call my room from any public place. I had to find a good ship crew member to guide me to a phone that they use. I could not get information directly over the phone, but had to go to a desk and ask for information. When they were on the phone put us on hold. I was more tired of going up and down on the ship to get information, eat on time, and keeping the children busy, than doing any shore excursion or any workout.
Shore excursion is another experience. We went to Carnivals private island call Half Moon Cay. The service on this island was poor. They were expecting 2600 passengers on that island an had only 50 people supporting them. Once again we had to stand in a line for water sport equipment. They charged us for rental (which should be free since it is their private island), and had to spent time in a line on an extremely hot day, instead of enjoying the beautiful beach. It was particularly difficult with children, who could not bear the heat and wanted to go into the water right away. We had only few hours on the beach and spent most of it in a line. I literally had to run through my fun activities so that I can finish all during the time limit we had on the island. Once again we had to stand in line for food. The food court was nice and food was good, but the way to the food court was not clearly marked. So we run around to find a path to the food court when we are getting late for our only sho

Pros: The shore excursion locations

Cons: The ship itself, some of the ship employees, long lines for every single thing on the ship, etc.

Recommends Carnival Imagination? No.

Cabin / Stateroom
Clean, little more room would be good. We all bumped our head to the overhead beds.
Ship Quality
Clean. However one guest mentioned cockroaches in her cabin. Layout was not guest friendly: the floors are marked differently than the buttons in the elevator. Too difficult to get from one place to another.
Service and Staff
Dinning room staff was very good, professional, caring and performed their work with enthusiasm. Their security staff is also very professional who checked people in and out on shore excursion. The stewards did their work, but not particularly well. The willingness to help was not present with most of the staff. They typically point to a direction and expected a guest to figure things out. There was no going above & beyond experience from anyone. When I pointed out the lines, the answer was that we are serving 2600 people. Well, in that case they are not capable in serving 2600 people. Photographers and drink waiters were friendly but they also made good amount of tips on each drink. The day care staff was the most disappointment. They had some activities for older children from 9 11 age, but for younger one they didnt really care much. The timings were rigid and the staff was not flexible, not even to provide any information.
Food and Dining
A rigid dining schedule. The formal dinner was at 6. Rest of the time other food courts were open but food quality was not good. Quantity of the food was a lot, but not a good quality. One night there was a Mexican food served, again not a great quality. Only good food that I thought was Mongolian stir fry, but had to stand in line for a long time to get the food prepared. They could have put more chef in this section to make it faster. French cuisine was served, but I never tried it. Pastries were there but not particularly a good ones.
The standup comedy shows were good. The musicals they played were also good. We could not enjoy many of the activities because of our little one so cannot comment much on it.
Children's Programs
Very poor. Not good for younger children. If you have children younger than 8, dont take this cruise. You will not be able to enjoy. We kept our little one for two hours on the first day and then he refused to go there again. When I approached the staff person and asked if something happened, she said sorry, I was not here so I could not answer you. If something had happened, they would have informed us. Our little one is used to of going to daycare and not new to that type of environment. The staff didnt particularly care for the little ones. So if you have little children, do go to this cruise.
Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (Private Island)
Don't rent anything. Rent a shade very early because they go real fast. Funny they can't accommodate all their passengers. Good clean water. If it was not for the long lines, this place could be one of the bests.
Don't Miss: There is a lagoon on the other side of the island which I heard is very beautiful. See that.
Nassau, Bahamas
Snorkeling. If you want to see things in Nassau, go out of the pier and get a taxi. They will charge you half the cost of the ship rates.
Don't Miss: Snorkeling. Atlantis if you like to spend money. I heard it is very good.
Grand Turk Island
Take the cataramn sail and snorkel tour. The best snorkeling with the best crew.
Don't Miss: Take the cataramn sail and snorkel tour.

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