Beautiful Caribbean Cruise with a few glitches

Carnival Pride Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Cruises: 4-6 cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 10

Overall rating:

3.8 out of 5
Carnival Pride

14 Night Southern Caribbean Carnival Journeys (Baltimore Roundtrip)

Sail date: January 06, 2019

Ship: Carnival Pride

Cabin type: Suite

Cabin number: 6172

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 2 years ago

Review summary

Our first journey cruise on the pride was mostly good. Setting the wait staff and the poor condition that the ship is in aside, we really enjoyed ourselves. Two weeks away was awesome. We saw 7 different islands and had lots of fun sea days. I’m hoping the Pride will look much shinier after dry dock...she’s a great ship and just needs some TLC.

Embarkation

5 out of 5
Easy! Super fast! We were on board (seriously) within minutes of arriving at the cruise terminal

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

4 out of 5
Guys burgers was great, main dining room tasty as always (although on this two week cruise I think the menu could have more variation). Only ate at the breakfast buffet, everything was fresh

Guy's Burger Joint

5 out of 5

Hubby loves the burgers. Me? I’m all about the fries!! Add on some of their crispy bacon pieces and you have a perfect afternoon snack.

Butterflies Lounge

5 out of 5

Tons of seating and all of the acts we saw were hilarious!

Pizzeria

5 out of 5

Tasty pizzas. 24 hours a day. What more can I say!

Deli

4 out of 5

Yummy BLT’s but I do have to say that a couple of times the bread was so tough I had a hard time biting through it. My husband loved the ham and cheese melt.

Onboard Activities

5 out of 5
While we didn’t do a ton of activities, the serenity hot tub was the perfect temp and not crowded at all

Carnival Waterworks

5 out of 5

While we didn’t have our kids with us on this particular cruise we have had them on the Pride in the past. The waterworks area is the best! So many fun things to do. I will say the yellow water slide is super fun, the green one is likely too scary for littler kids. The floor drops out from underneath you an then you slide down the tube. I didn’t care for it although my husband thought it was fun.

Photo Gallery

2 out of 5

Picture quality is great, but The Pride needs to get with it and update to the same photo programs the newer ships have. On the newer ships you view your pics on the Hub app. The amount of photos that get printed and then are never purchased is so wasteful! With the app you just pick the ones you want and have those printed out. It just makes sense!

Entertainment

4 out of 5
Loved that there was more than just song/dance stage shows. The Magician, the Mentalist and the ventriloquist were fantastic!

Carnival Seaside Theater

5 out of 5

Movie selection was great and having the roof (mostly) closed made it so even in January my husband could sit outside comfortably and watch movies.

Service and Staff

2 out of 5
Here’s where the glitches were. Our main dining room staff was pretty awful. Consistently forgot to bring ordered items or would bring things we didn’t order. Overall our staff seemed rushed and never paid us more than a few seconds of attention at a time. At one point we were seated for over an hour before we received our main entrees. Good thing we weren’t in a hurry! Having been on a number of Carnival cruises before we were surprised at the lack of service...we’ve always been so pleased before. As for our room steward...When we first boarded we met a lovely lady who attended to all our needs. But then she disappeared! Days went by without seeing her. Don’t get me wrong, our room was still being tidied and turned down in the evenings, but our steward was MIA. Turns out she had to leave the ship for a family emergency. I felt bad for her but was in turn annoyed that whoever replaced her didn’t bother to introduce themselves. I had no idea who to call if we had any issues. I only found out by accident on the third to last day who had been taking care of our room. As a suite guest, we pay more in gratuities and I’d like to say we received top notch service, but the lack of personalized service was noticeable.

Ship Quality

3 out of 5
Before I start ,please note that we have traveled on the Pride before and love this ship. Now, having said that, the Pride is looking sad and neglected these days. I understand she is to enter dry dock within the next two weeks and that should help in some areas. But, it’s only a 13 day dry dock. I’m sure she will receive a thourough cleaning and some issues will be taken care of but there is no way that everything can be handled in 13 days. The serenity hot tub bubbler didn’t work and it was massively chipped up and scratched. There were large chunks of design work missing around the elevator doors, all of the handrails around the ship need paint at the very least, and many could use a total replacement. Most of the design elements in the Lido buffet area are really chipped and peeling. There were loose metal pieces in the elevators and many of the drawers and closest doors in our stateroom had missing or loose knobs or handles. The exterior of the ship is quite rusty. Our balcony had a lot of rust that clearly hasn’t been dealt with in some time. The funnel is faded and looks old. For the most part a good coat of paint will go a long way, but the interior features need updating and/or total replacement. On the plus side, I love the layout of this ship, it’s super easy to navigate.

Cabin / Stateroom

4 out of 5
Loved having the extra room of the ocean suite. The bed was very comfortable and the larger balcony was great. These suites have a ton of closet and drawer space which was espeically nice on this two week cruise. Downside...there is ONE outlet for the entire suite and it’s in the dressing area, not anywhere close to the bed which was a problem or us since my husband uses a cPap machine. Thankfully we had brought a long extension cord and it was just able to make it from the outlet, around the drawer and closet area and behind the bed to plug his machine in. Our room steward taped it down for us later so there was no tripping hazard. I understand that often times there are extension cords available on board but I wouldn’t chance it, I’d take your own.

Ship tip

A power strip (non surge suppressor) is a must! If you have any more than two devices to plug in your are going to need a power stip and/or a USB hub extender. Oh and fun tip! Fill a cup with vanilla soft serve and then fill with lemonade. Once you stir it together it tastes just like the lemonade frosty thing from Chick Fil A and it’s free!

Ports of call

Baltimore, Maryland

5 out of 5
Easy to get on and off the ship here. Parking is close and embarkation was fast!

Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas

5 out of 5
Loved the sky ride...beautiful views. You can easily walk there and don’t need an excursion for this one. I recommend stopping by the Pirate museum on the way back to the ship. Very informative and lots of hands on stuff to do...while we didn’t have our kids with us I can tell they would have loved it.

St. John's, Antigua

2 out of 5
My husband and my mom did a zip line excursion at this port and they said it was great, but I can only rate the actual port as that’s all I saw. It was crowded and the market area was full of high pressure sales. I didn’t enjoy this at all.

St. George's, Grenada

5 out of 5
We did a spice tour here (official Carnival excursion). The tour was great. We saw lots of the island and visited several interesting sites including the nutmeg processing plant. Our tour guide was very hard to understand...not so much the accent as he just couldn’t keep his mouth off the microphone! Very twisty roads...great potential for motion sickness if you suffer from that. Take a draminine ahead of time!

Castries, St. Lucia

5 out of 5
Beautiful island, the Pitons, the port views, the volcano and the gardens were lovely. Our tour guide was awesome (Felixia). She was super friendly, funny and gave us loads of information. I will say this tour is nothing but super winding roads with lots of switchbacks and up and down hills. I ended up needing to switch with someone sitting in the front of the bus on the way back and I was feeling quite ill. I knew I couldn’t eat or drink anything at our lunch stop or I would have been sick. My car sick kid would have suffered greatly on this tour.

Philipsburg, St. Maarten

5 out of 5
My dad and I did the helmut diving tour! It was awesome. The boat ride there was fun and easy. You arrive at a floating platform and after your safety talk you descend a ladder into the water. Once you are are shoulder deep they place the helmut on your head and you continue your descent. You have a diver with you at all times as you go down the ladder. You have to “clear your ears” every single step down (atleast I did) or the pressure builds up and can become quite painful. If you can pop your ear by yawning, swallowing, etc. then you should be fine. My ears are particularly sensitive to elevation changes and I was able to get all the way to the bottom with no pain. It’s a bit disconcerting, knowing you are under water (25 feet down), but breathing is easy and walking around, holding the handrails makes seeing the underwater objects a piece of cake. Be aware water comes up into the helmut but never got more than just under my chin. Once you walk around the whole thing then you head back up the ladder. Once you are back up top you are offered a punch or a rum punch and you can either hang out on the dock or swim around with noodles and snorkel gear. The water felt really quite cold going in (72 degree water in January), but once I was used to it, it felt great and after the dive I was swam around and the water was perfect. On the way back we had the choice of getting off the taxi boat at the cruise port or continuing onto the town to do some shopping. If you do the shopping you will need to find your own way back to port via taxi, water taxi or walking.

San Juan, Puerto Rico

4 out of 5
Because of the government shut down we were unable to visit the Fort (it was shut down). Instead we just walked around and checked out San Juan. We found a fun city square where we were able to buy some coffee and hang out and listen to music. Then we found this fun area tucked away over by part of the old city wall where there are hundreds of pigeons! They will land all over you. It was really fun. You can buy feed to encourage them even more but even without feeding them we were still able to get quite a few to land on our arms (and even our heads!)

Grand Turk Island

2 out of 5
I wish I could rate this one higher and would have if we had simply stayed at the port. Instead we rented a golf cart so we could cruise around and see the island. What we saw was nothing. Mostly run down shacks and lots of garbage everywhere. We did stop at Govenrors beach and it was beautiful! Seeing the donkeys was fun too. Upon return we found out we should have just stayed at the port!! The large pools (with swim up bars!), clean beaches, fun restaurant, little shops and lively music would have been more than enough for us to enjoy our time. I understand that Grand Turk is recovering (slowly) from a large hurricane, but until they recover more I’d recommend sticking to just the port and skipping the rest of the island.

Disembarkation

5 out of 5
We pulled in early and were off in a flash! Couldn’t ask for a better process.

Traveler Photos

Sky Ride The Pitons Helmut Diving Port
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