Great ports, not great ship
Carnival Victory Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern
Sail Date: January 08, 2012
Ship: Carnival Victory
Cabin Type: Inside
Traveled As: Family (young children)
Reviewed: 6 years ago
The pros: Very nice crew on the ship, food at dinner was descent, wonderful ports visited, good amount of entertainment on the ship, great daycare for kids.
The cons: Cruise ship very tachy and old appearing, many very trashy passengers, several elevators not working, no local (Carribean) cuisine on ship
The details: We went on a cruise last year with a different, European line, and loved it. We were very excited about this cruise until we were on board. My wife and I have never seen so many trashy people in one place. Mullets galore, obscenely obese, toothless, trashy clothes, poor hygiene... We could not understand how people could afford a cruise if they could not practice personal hygiene.
There are many people from Puerto Rico that were very trashy and rude. They would push you out of the way without so much as an "excuse me" and the notion that mullets and tramp stamp tattoos are out has not made it down to the island. There were also many Americans from the mainland that were somewhat trashy, but overall the Puerto Rican's won that contest. My wife and I, however did meet quite a few nice people as well. It was especially apparent during the two formal dinners. Many people were in Tuxedos, nice suites or sport-coats, and then there were some with cut-off jeans, T-shirts with stains, and sleeveless shirts.
Our waiter at dinner was very nice, but the other waiters at breakfast and lunch were mostly mediocre at best and the Maitre Des were a bit obnoxious. The first night's dinner was open seating and we found our table they we were assigned to for the rest of the cruise. It was a two person table and there were 3 of us including our daughter. I informed the Maitre De that this would be too small a table for 3 people and he informed me that the cruise is very full and that is all they had. After telling him that 3 people were not going to sit at a small 2 person table, he said that if they could find something else they would leave a card in our room the next day. They did however find seating that accommodated the 3 of us, however I did notice that there were many people squeezed into 4 person booths with a char added at the end to fit 5 at these booths. That looked pretty cramped and these people in the extra chair were in the way of the waiters and patrons walking in the dining room. Additionally, every time we sat in the dining room for breakfast or lunch, which is open seating, the Matre De would try to sit us the furthest from a window as possible and when we would ask to sit by one of the many open tables near a window, they would get huffy. After all "Why would anyone want to look out at the beautiful Carribean islands on beautiful days?"
The food was descent, but there were no carribean dishes except for conch fritters one night. Reinforcing the tachy decor, there was an appetizer section of the menu called "Didja"...as in "did you every try." I guess it is supposed to be "exotic" food, but it included, what I consider, not very exotic food. The "Didja" appetizers included oysters Rockefeller, seared ahi tuna (actually was very good, but very small portion), escargot (nicely prepared as well), and frog legs (didn't have). The meats were good and cooked to the proper temperature and my wife said the salmon was pretty good as well. Overall, I thought the food was good considering that Carnival is one of the lesser expensive cruise lines.
The ports visited on this cruise were wonderful! 5 amazing ports on a 7 day cruise is amazing. The last cruise we were on (and only other cruise) only went to 3 on a 7 day cruise and one included the Bahamas, which is nothing as nice as these ports. It's almost too hectic going to 5 ports in 7 days, although our 1 day spent at sea was not that nice because the ship and it's patrons are not the ambiance we cared to be around.
Overall, we're reconsidering if we'll go on a cruise again, but, for sure, not with Carnival.
Food and Dining
Service and Staff
Cabin / Stateroom
Pros: Islands visited
Cons: Tachy ship, trashy passengers