Carnival Inspiration Cruise Review to Mexico

4-6 cruises


Helpful Votes

4 out of 5


Sail Date: February 16, 2015

Reviewed: 1 year ago

Traveled As: Couple

Room Type: Inside

Initial boarding went very smoothly which was a nice surprise (Carnival). "Your time" dining was our choice which was a blessing. Never did it before but will do it always from now on. Overall condition of the ship (Inspiration) was "okay". There were several broken glass wall panels throughout the ship which to me posed a hazard had they become dislodged at any time. Ship appeared clean and well maintained otherwise. We had an issue with our shower backing up on the last night; took maintenance nearly an hour to respond. Water nearly make it out of the lavatory area. They cleared the clog but they did not clean the floor which I had to do. What annoyed me the most were two things...first, the photographers on board interrupting dinner to take photos I told them I didn't want anyway. That is at every dinner and it doesn't matter if you have having a casual conversation or in a romantic moment; they WILL interrupt you to take your photo. Next was debarkation in Long Beach. The staff are in such a rush to get you off the boat they lose their sense of kindness. They can be rude and very pushy herding you like cattle to get off the gang way, into the customs room then, once out of customs, out of their building. Try to stop and put your passport back in your purse or pocket? You will get the third degree about not stopping. Try to allow your child to get a drink of WILL get yelled at to keep walking. Overall I'd rate this cruise, my 6th, as a 7.5 to 8.0 out of 10. What could improve it? Well for one...they don't tell you until the END of the cruise only one bottle of alcohol is allowed through customs...they let you buy as much as you want on board but neglect that fact until it's too late. Do your homework about customs prior to your cruise. These ships have little if any "down time." They end one cruise...take a few hours, start the next, then do it all over again. Where is the time to make major repairs such as the broken glass and plumbing issues? The fact they automatically billed the gratuity for room/dinner service providers; I didn't like. We had to go in-person to cancel that from our credit card billing and tip the room/dinner service ourselves which is more appropriate based on the level of service. Also, do your homework on the excursions; sometimes you can get a much better deal once at your destination. I have another cruise scheduled for later this year (also with Carnival) so we'll see how that one goes.

Ship Quality
Many broken glass wall panels throughout. Exposed wiring in some areas.
Food and Dining
Cabin / Stateroom
I won't complain for the price. My only concern was the delay in responding to a plumbing issue with water backing up nearly into the cabin from the bathroom.
Service and Staff
Doug gotta have him back...often!
Destinations and Excursions
I miss going to Puerto Vallarta!
Long Beach (Los Angeles), California
Get there early. Porters are very helpful and honest.
Catalina Island, California
If you are not adventurous there is not much to do other than shop and eat. Take a long casual walk, meet locals they are great to talk with. I recommend the miniature golf and eating at the little taqueria next to the course. Some shops have seasonal hours. Google shopping before your trip for seasonal hours/closures. Go to PETE's CAFE...a must!
Ensenada, Mexico
Ensenada is what you make it. Take the bus from the ship into town. Listen CAREFULLY to the excursions they offer and the prices. You will be VERY surprised. Some real cost me. Downtown don't venture too far from the main streets. I highly recommend El Rey Sol...highly recommend it. I also highly recommend a store called Uncle George's. It's on Lopez Mateo's street. Great shopping and great staff; cheap priceses.


Be patient waiting for the elevators or just simply take the stairs. Use the self debarkation and get off quicker. You WILL be rushed once your are off the gang way. You will meet a lot of strangers and enjoy great conversations. Never met a rude person on any cruise.

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