Number of Cruises: 9
Cruise Line: Carnival
Ship: Carnival Spirit
Sailing Date: November 17th, 2004
Itinerary: Mexican Riviera
This was our 4th (and last) cruise on Carnival. A combination of non-acceptable conditions on this cruise make us wonder, is it only the Spirit that this is happening on, or is the whole fleet (including Holland, etc.) going downhill??
1. The staff didn't present that extra friendly, outgoing attitude. They were nice, but didn't appear to be happy or to go that extra mile by remembering your name, or chit chatting with you once in awhile.
2. People were allowed to go barefoot in the public areas, including the lido restaurant. (We're not including the pool areas).
3. It took us 1 hour, in Acapulco, of standing in a long line to get back on the ship. They only had one x-ray machine going. They should have had two.
4. In Zihuatanejo, it took us 1 hour to get on a tendor to get off the ship. Coming back, we had to stand in the hot sun for about 45 minutes to get back on the tendor to return to the ship. This was unacceptable...we were afraid some of the older people would faint from the heat. In fact, one man was taken away in an ambulance. We're not sure of the cause, but we wouldn't be surprised if it was heat stroke. Only 4 tenders were running, when a simple solution would have been to add 2 more. At this point we complained to the pursor. We told him we were afraid to get off at the next port. We were offered a bottle of champagne, and the next port was easy on, easy off.
5. New to us: Hand blow dryers in the public restrooms. What happened to the paper towels?? Half the time the dryers didn't work, and were a nuisance.
6. The breakfast food was cold in the Lido restaurant - a definate health hazzard. The bacon was way undercooked. And they serve powdered scrambled eggs. Consequently, we chose to eat in the dining room. The grits there were cold and we had to ask to have them heated up.
7. The shore excursion desk was not staffed on a port day. Why????
8. There was a time change that they never announced in their daily news paper.
Each of these complaints, by themselves, don't seem too serious. But, together, they add up to a serious image problem for Carnival. The bottom line is, that Carnival went from treating us like royalty to treating us like lower class citizens. All the feelings of elegance go away and become feelings of despair. It's the total package that has something missing.
Carnival has it's eye on the wrong ball. They have lost sight on providing an excellent package and are too focused on making more money. This is going to backfire, and they will wind up losing customers. They are looking to save a few pennies here and there because they think we won't notice it. Well, we noticed.