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Age: 45


Number of Cruises: 3

Cruise Line: Carnival

Ship: Carnival Fascination

Sailing Date: October 21st, 2005

Itinerary: Nassau, Bahamas

This was a memorable cruise since we received two extra days at sea courtesy of Hurricane Wilma, which closed the Port of Miami. This was our second Carnival cruise and our first cruise in over 15 years. Overall, we felt the cruise was a very good value for the money. The ship was clean and everything was pretty much as advertised. The cabins were clean, the shower worked great, and the beds were comfortable. Most of the reviews I read prior to the cruise gave the food high marks and it exceeded my expectations for a cruise at this price. The menu had plenty of variety, and most of the entrees were beef or fish. It was also nice that there were decent wines available for $18 - $24. The desserts were ok, but the portions were small. Better desserts could be found at the buffet served each night in the Coconut Grove. One thing I didn’t like was the soda policy. At the very least, free soft drinks should be provided at dinner. It didn’t make sense that lemonade and fruit punch are freely available all day near the pool or at the buffet, but I had to buy drinks for my kids each night at dinner. I could get a second entrée for free if I wanted, but if I want a soda with it, it will cost $2.50?

Although it wasn’t Carnival’s fault that we had to stay at sea two extra days, they had plenty of food and full menus available the entire time. We never had to wait in line to get seated or get food at a buffet, with the exception of the midnight buffet, and that was worth the wait.

There was plenty of room on deck, and plenty of lounge chairs. The unadvertised 9-hole miniature golf course on the top deck inside the jogging track was a nice surprise for my kids. The organized activities were lacking, however. There weren’t enough kids at this time of year, and the Camp Carnival activities were almost nonexistent.

The shows were ok, but they were both musical reviews; some variety in between the music would have been nice.

The international staff was ok, but only a few crew members really were exceptional.

The 3-night cruise only cost about $300, the same it would cost for 3 nights at a hotel in Miami, so it is a great way to spend a long weekend.

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