Number of Cruises: 3
Cruise Line: Carnival
Ship: Carnival Elation
Sailing Date: n/a
Itinerary: Western Caribbean
Overall, the cruise experience aboard the Elation was a very good one. The first disappointment, however, was in our transfer from the Houston airport to the Galveston Pier. The buses were very late, and we waited for almost 2-1/2 hours. When we returned home, we realized it was because of the buses unloading passengers from the previous cruise. If you are a non-US citizen, the wait at customs (off the ship) will take you 3 hours. I was traveling with my 73 year old mother, and there was nowhere for her to sit down and it was almost 100 degrees that day. I will be writing to US customs, as it really has no reflection on Carnival.
The FUN ship is called that for a reason. The events were well organized, and everybody had a great time. I laughed a lot – enjoyed the comedy acts and all the “game shows” and trivia events, Karaoke, etc. The staff was all friendly and helpful.
The food was very disappointing (sub standard). I didn’t have one hot meal all week. The dining experience was enjoyable, but only because our wait staff was professional and they made it worthwhile. I looked forward to coming to dinner every night, even though the food was not entirely appealing. My 13 year old son especially enjoyed Tiffany’s where he could go any time to grab a slice of pizza and some ice cream.
There was a lot to do for kids (older teens) and younger kids under the age of 11. I found fewer activities for my 13 year old son, although he enjoyed the pool and the arcade. We even played a few card games in the library.
The ship was immaculate. There was always someone shining, cleaning, and washing something. Also, it was beautiful and in great shape.
The shore excursions are better found off the ship where you will find them at less expense. It might be worth the hassle for you to just book them aboard the cruise, though.
All in all it was a great experience. We met lots of people and had tons of fun. I can’t wait to go on my next one.