15
 1,272

 Carnival Cruiselines

FI and I are starting to toss around ideas for our honeymoon.

We want something different, we dont want to go to cuba, mexico or the dominican.

Recently we are entertaining the idea of a cruise. Ideally we'd like to depart of Miami so I can get a couple days on the beach there and experience South Beach again. (We got engaged in Miami and it was a great great time!)

I was wondering if anyone has any experience with Carnival Cruise Lines. What are your reviews on them?
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 18 Jun 2012 12:21 PM
 25 Aug 2008
 Brampton Ontario
MrsFillier
Devotee
2,444
I cruised with them in 2008. Honestly, I was unimpressed. The ship was older and it was very crowded, in addition there wasnt much to do on the ship other than the casino.
If I were to cruise again, I would choose another line for sure.
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 18 Jun 2012 9:46 PM
 10 Oct 2005
 Winnipeg, MB
travelbug
Fan
821
I'm a little bias as I worked on Carnival. I would highly recommend them. It really depends on the ship and cruise you take with them as to your experience. Yes, like MrsFillier said, there are some ships that the only thing to really do is the casino. But, most ships are a lot bigger now and have been renovated to give the guest a better cruising experience.

Carnival is very family orientated, so as a honeymoon, I don't think it would be my first choice. Although, if you go on off season, it might be better. I don't recommend going in summer months, unless you like kids. There can easily be 500-800 kids on a ship during the summer months every week, as well as any holiday- Xmas break, Easter, Thanksgiving, Halloween.
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 18 Jun 2012 10:53 PM
 19 Aug 2010
 Underwater
DivingC
Devotee
2,105
We did a cruise for our honeymoon too, left from Miami. It was AWESOME, our best trip yet! But we were with Royal Caribbean as we wanted a higher-end/better service/better food experience.
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 19 Jun 2012 3:53 AM
 9 Aug 2006
 Langley
walkinthepark
Addict
3,959
We'll be cruising with Carnival in a month. Although we'll be departing from New Orleans. I'll let you know how it goes. It's going to be our first cruise.
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 19 Jun 2012 8:56 AM
 13 Aug 2002
 Toronto
FriendsFirst
Queen of the Forum
28,628
I haven't cruised Carnival, but have cruised one of the 'upscale' sister lines... we love cruising, but as travelbug said, Carnival is probably not the best choice for 'romance'.

Also sailing out of Miami that might be more 'romantic'... Crystal, Celebrity, Costa, Oceania... there are more, but those would be my top 4 to consider, personally. Crystal & Oceania are generally smaller ships... so you'd feel more motion and there would be less to do on board (although most cruise lines offer a wide range of programs for passengers... karaoke, kitchen tours, cooking classes, wine tastings, etc. plus pool-side games and the ever-present bingo wink )... Celebrity is very 'posh'... dress codes are taken more seriously... the clientle tends to be on the older end of the spectrum, but generally very few kids/young families... Costa is a sister line to Carnival, but again, tends to be smaller ships.

All that said... not all those lines will necessarily be cruising out of Miami when you want to go (for example, Crystal "winters" in Miami... so they only sail from there in December & January)... a number of the smaller ships avoid the Caribbean in the June-November hurricane season.

Also consider that a number of the lines that cruise out of Port Everglades offer 'transfers' from Miami International Airport, too, though... which opens up more options, too.

I strongly recommend, if you're thinking of a cruise, that you check out the forums on cruisecritic.com ... there's a wealth of info there on different lines, different ships, ports of call, excursions... it's amazing!
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 19 Jun 2012 9:05 AM
 2 Apr 2012
ftrmrsweatherdon
Rookie
170
Wow thanks for all the info guys!

I totally hear you guys on the kids thing. And originally I was wanting an adult only all inclusive honeymoon, so this seems like a bit.. ok huge difference.

However, we'd be going the first week of October at which point Kids should be back in school. Plus the cruise we are looking at, both in terms of departure port & destinations. Is the Carnival Breeze and it looks to have an "Adult-only area" which I like the idea of.

Thanks FriendsFrist for the cruise forum. I will definately check it out!
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 19 Jun 2012 9:30 AM
 13 Aug 2002
 Toronto
FriendsFirst
Queen of the Forum
28,628
Heh... sadly when it comes to "a family cruise", school seems to mean remarkably little. There were families with children (age 0-12) on our Alaskan cruise in late May, and on our New England/Canada cruise in October, and our Caribbean cruise in September (although admittedly fewer on that one)... a lot of parents don't see any problem with taking their kids out of grade school (or middle school) for a week, it seems. Plus with different school years around the globe and year-round schooling gaining ground in North America (which has breaks at 'strange' times throughout the year)... if the line caters to families, then there's a good chance that's what you're going to find.

But... an adult only area can be nice... just look into how strictly enforced it is, how much more it costs, etc (cruise critic will definitely have that info)... and remember that dinner won't be a kid-free experience.

In regards to dinner... since it's your honeymoon, I'd recommend either booking a set dining time (if the line offers it), or talking to the maitre d' on your first day and making reservations for the week... it'll ensure less waiting time and generally up the chances of you having the same servers for the whole cruise (which just increases the "I feel so pampered" feeling... 'cuz they get paid to be personable, and if they see you every evening, they'll learn your drink orders, whether you want extra bread or no bread, etc. It's pretty awesome smile )... also consider dining in any of the surcharge specialty restaurants (reservations required... and they tend to book up on the first or second day for the duration of the cruise), and most lines offer a 'balcony dining' package, too, I believe.

Since you're looking at cruising on a ship that just entered service 2 weeks ago, I'd definitely recommend checking out the main site for cruise critic... they're likely to have been flooded with reviews for the ship in the last couple of weeks, and that'll be really informative (newer ships tend to have newer crews and unexpected issues... the reviews will generally give you an indication how they deal with those issues, which I think says a lot about how you'll be treated a few months from now)
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 19 Jun 2012 9:38 AM
 13 Aug 2002
 Toronto
FriendsFirst
Queen of the Forum
28,628
ok.. forget that "how you'll be treated in a few months"... I thought you were talking about October this year, but you're talking 2013, aren't you? ('cuz it looks like the Breeze is still in the Med in October this year)

Still... how they handle the inevitable hiccups of the first month or so of service (when they're still learning the foibles of the ship herself) says a lot about the standard of service going forward, I think.
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 19 Jun 2012 10:52 AM
 2 Apr 2012
ftrmrsweatherdon
Rookie
170
Right next October.

Yeah I figure there will still be some kids, I'm just hoping that there will be less than say mid July or August.

Ill definately be reading up on reviews and such. Luckily its far enough away, I still have lots of time to research AND book early to get the bonuses of early bookings!
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 19 Jun 2012 11:14 AM
 13 Aug 2002
 Toronto
FriendsFirst
Queen of the Forum
28,628
I'll also say this... splurge for a balcony. Last time we did Carib., we got a balcony and we were out there all the time... so pretty to watch sunsets in the warm air with the cooling breeze of the moving ship... fun to watch all the "sail away" moments without being in the insanity of the main decks, too (although it's fun to do at least one sail away up there to get the whole party feel, too smile )

*laugh* Have I mentioned we love cruising? rofl I'm sure Ms_Roc will chime in if she sees this thread, too... she's another big cruising fan smile
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 19 Jun 2012 7:41 PM
 14 Dec 2011
 Ontario
joheryl
Rookie
220
Great Info FF! We are leaning towards a Celebrity Mediterranean cruise for our honeymoon and we will be first time cruisers. We have decided to splurge on a balcony as well. FH is trying to negotiate the 2.5 weeks off work for the honeymoon so once he gets that approved we will book!

I decided to go with celebrity because it is our honeymoon and I want to feel a bit pampered ;-) Regarding adult only cruising, I went to a princess cruise information session a couple weeks ago and they seemed to say they limit the kids aboard, but I am not sure how true that was or if they were trying to please the audience.
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 20 Jun 2012 8:14 AM
 2 Apr 2012
ftrmrsweatherdon
Rookie
170
We are definately getting a balcony! That was one of the things that are a must for us if we cruise!

I looked at Celebrity Cruise Lines and unfortunately none leave from Miami when we would like to go. Debarking from Miami is a compromise to doing the cruise. As I wanted to go to Miami for the beach & atmosphere in South Beach. FI wants to do something different and doesn't just want to sit on a beach all week.
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 14 Jul 2012 10:48 PM
 4 Jun 2006
MrsMac07
Devotee
2,221
We (finally) splurged on a balcony on our last cruise and would never go back!
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 3 Aug 2012 12:41 AM
 9 Aug 2006
 Langley
walkinthepark
Addict
3,959
Well I'm back from my Carnival cruise. We did the Western Caribbean. I wasn't all that impressed with the entertainment or food. Service was excellent. Definitely get a balcony.

My MIL, who has been on a bazillion cruises, agreed with me about the above. She usually goes on Princess, although she's been on most others too.

I found that reading cruise critic before going helped immensly!
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 3 Aug 2012 8:51 AM
 2 Apr 2012
ftrmrsweatherdon
Rookie
170
Thanks for the update! The cruise we are looking at is only $598 for a balcony room. I mean at that price I'm not expecting Gordon Ramsay himself to cook my dinner. As long as its edible, I'll be ok!

I'm glad to hear the service was excellent. Often the service can really make or break a trip!
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 31 Oct 2012 11:59 PM
 30 Apr 2012
 buzzle.ca
buzzle
New Member
0

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