Carnival Paradise Cruise Review to Mexico

Contributor Level: Deck Hand

1 cruise (first)


Helpful Votes

1 out of 5

A cruise from !@$# er the lower reigion

Sail Date: February 05, 2007

Reviewed: 10 years ago

Traveled As: Family (young children)

Room Type: Inside

This was our first cruise and as such we arrived at the port with much excitement and anticipation. Several other our extended family members have been on cruises before, and highly recommended the experience. We have two small children who we love to spend family time with, so we of course brought them along as well. We drove to the port at Long Beach from Utah where we live. Arriving at the pier at 2:00 pm on the departure day. Carnival cruise lines told us that we would not be able to board until 1:30pm, so we thought we were doing pretty good. We waited in line OUTSIDE the terminal for 2 hours before we could even get in line inside where we waited an additional 40 minutes in the "funpass" line. We then waited in line on the gangway for another 20 minutes before finally boarding the ship. A 3 hour line with 2 small children and my pregnant wife. we were worn out by this time so we stashed our stuff in our room and went for some lunch and to check out the ship. I was surprised to see how many people were already drunk by sailing time. Several of the intoxicated passengers were gathered by the one of the bars located on one of the open air decks . As we went walking by with our children on of the women pulled up her shirt to reveal her under wear. we quickly diverted our childrens attention elsewhere. Our dinner was pleasant albeit my steak was comparable to one from Village Inn. (It tasted microwaved) The wait staff were vary impressive. The high point of our experience. After that we went to the Welcome Aboard show. The opening number was, in my opinion, rather risqu and certainly not something for our children to watch. The comedian that came on later was crude and distasteful and made some derogatory comments about having children on board and large families etc. So we left in the middle of the show. We went to bed that night feeling unhappy and ripped off. The next day we decided that since this cruise was not what we were expecting it to be i.e. excessive drinking, lewd entertainment, mediocre food, we decided to exercise our money back guarantee that the cruise line offered. Of course there were strings attached. Something called the Jones Act came into play here. It was never made vary clear what the Jones Act is but apparently if we were to disembark the ship at Catalina Island we would have to pay fines in excess of $300 per person. Which would not be reimbursed by the cruise line. The cruise itself cost $1056 with taxes and such so I wasn't to excited to light out another $1200+ just to get off. We decided that we would just have to make the most of it , and finish out our cruise. We enjoyed our shore excursions, which we did outside of the Carnival Lines offerings. And we did have some better food later on while dining onboard. I ate snails which were like stuffed mushrooms, ( I liked them) and a delicious lobster tail as well as a much better steak than the first one. We stayed in our room more than we thought we would. Not much to do if you don't drink, gamble or enjoy risqu entertainment. We played mini golf on deck with our kids, and swam in the kiddie pool. After we got back all our family told us that they cruised with Royal Caribbean and did not experience any of the lousy stuff we did. I never heard that Carnival had a reputation for being the "party" ship until after we got back. Oh well live and learn. Another Disneyland trip would have been a better choice for our little family I guess. Buyer Beware.

Pros: The dining room staff and the room steward they were A+

Recommends Carnival Paradise? No.

Children's Programs
Staff were good just no family activities
Ship Quality
Food and Dining
Cabin / Stateroom
Service and Staff
I will measure all my dining experiences against the wait staff. They are the best.

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