Flew into LAX then Super Shuttle to Long Beach to check into Best Western. $35 for two people to hotel. Best Western offers shuttle to port for free or for fee, depending upon method you use to book room. We booked at discount, so we paid $10 per person for shuttle to Carnival ship. Full fare, or AAA get free shuttle.
Fast and efficient.
Overall appearance and dining reservations:
The pink ship isn’t as bad as I thought. Yes, it has pink colorations, but not all that bad. We had 777 for anytime dining, which we had to wait in a long line to change to early assigned dining. We were assigned our table the second day. The gym is very large, but is reduced by 75% due to hot tub enclosure. Guest Services line very long, as we wanted our room key hole punched. Went later. Mob of people everywhere, try to not be in a hurry or notice, was really bad. Very loud, it seems, everywhere we walked. Library very small. Bring your own books and games if you plan to do either. Selection of games and books next to nothing. Card games were available after the third day, by asking Guest Services. Your folio review (money you have available/spent) info is available on kioskis throughout the ship, but easier to use in your room via their interactive TV. The dining menu on your TV is wrong, and never changes. There are lots of elevators, but be quick, as they seem to close before you can get to them. Dining, any location is very crowded by both people as well as furniture (assigned dining was the worst, very limited spaces and I can’t imagine how a wheelchair would be managed). If you are very tall, watch your clearance in several areas. I saw they removed some lighting features due to low clearance. Watch the stairs, all steps have a metal ledge. This was a tough cruise to start, as we were comparing to other cruise lines. Decided to shut up about the differences.
Main dining, Black Pearl/Golden Perold were at best ok. Very bland or very salty for the most part. Normal service is 2 hours. Breakfast omelets very good. The last dinner was good, to very good. Prime Rib or… Guess they want to be sure to give you the best last day experience. Quantities of food, too much, most of the time. I hate to waste food, but most times I either couldn’t eat it, or there was just too much. I would rate the Indian food station outside at the end of the ship deck 9 (Tandoor) as excellent. I would rate the deli hot sandwiches, the same, excellent. Try the corned beef and pastrami, I highly recommend it. The Mongolian Wok was also excellent, but don’t do it the first day, as the lines are long and it takes time to get to the front. The hot spicy sauce is very good. I heard some people say it is salty, but I think that might be because they had two sauces added to their cooking mixture. The pizza stand was very good, providing freshly ordered variety of foods. The burrito bar, I didn’t particularly like. Coldish, and the shrimp wasn’t cooked. Huge portions. Popcorn every night, free, after 8pm in the outside movie area. Don’t ask for a whole grapefruit, they won’t provide it. Only ones that are cut in half. Don’t ask for a side of vegetables, as they will say yes, then not bring it. Stick to the menu, only. Sushi was very good, and fresh. California Rolls, seem to only be available on Fridays. Formal Night on this ship is called Elegant Night. Thus, the requirement of dressing up is not as rigid. Actually nice, if you don’t like to dress up too much. The meal didn’t seem anymore special on these elegant nights. The dinner menu shown on your TV is wrong, just so you know. It never changes. They also have the standard hamburger, hot dogs, which I didn’t try. People seemed to like them though.
Husband and several people we talked to, really enjoyed the shows in the showroom. I don’t do much after dinner, as I prefer watching TV. TV has (3) free channels of movies that recycle every few hours. Each day the selection changes. One day it was Mr. Popper, Planet of the Apes and kids something. TV channels are coming from Florida, thus what you normally watch is on their time. We are from Nevada, so we watched things 3 hours early. The have ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, Fox, TNT and other channels, off air. Also, they offer Video On Demand movies for $10.99 each. Their adult VOD is $14.99. You can request events to be added to your newsletter, if you want to organize a bridge game, etc. Just find a cruise member or two to request it. We did.
Regular TV, use the channel up or down key.
Menu key for interactive services.
Sail & Sign Review
Movies $10.99 selection:
A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas, Albert Nobbs, All Things Fall Apart, Anonymous, Beneath The Darkness, Blackthorn, Born To Be Wild (2011), Contraband, Dirty Girl, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, Fireflies in the Garden, Fright Night (2011), Happy Feet 2, Happy Happy/ Skykt Lykkelig (ST), Have A Little Faith, I Melt with You, In The Land of Blood and Honey, J. Edgar, Jack and Jill, Jonny English Reborn, Joyful Noise, Like Crazy, London Bouldevard, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, New Years Eve, Pariah, Project Nim, Resurrect Dead: The Mystery of the.., Sherlock Holmes 2: Game of Shadows, The Adventure of TinTin, The Artist, The Darkest Hour, The Girl with a Dragon Tattoo, The Ides of March, The Immortals, The Muppets (2011), The Other F Word, The Rum Diaries, The Scorpin King 3, The 3 Musketeers (2011), The Twilight Saga- Breaking Dawn, Tinker Tinker Soldier Spy, Tower Heist, War Horse, Young Adult
Adult PPV is $12.99 with 5 titles.
There was two radio channels, that can be used for white noise… helpful if you have trouble sleeping. We use the bathroom light, with the door closed, as well as outside lighting for night light. NO time clock in room. If you like, bring your own. The phone has a LED type display over on desk. Bring a watch, finding a clock on board, kinda difficult.
YES, they have self-service laundry. Port days 7am-10pm. Sea days 8am-10pm. Last wash is 9:30pm and doors locked at 10:30pm.
Was performed the first day, before we left port. We all stood outside on the deck, below huge fans. We could not hear anything being said. Those around us, also couldn’t hear. Didn’t need to bring life vests though. Check out the adults only areas, they are pretty nice. Pool or lounging for when you want it quieter. Bring comfortable shoes that do well on tile. Ton’s of tile on this ship. Didn’t seem slippery, but with a spilled drink all bets are off. The crew seemed to always be cleaning. Didn’t see much trash, even with the number of people and kids that were on board. The spa service prices drop a lot after the 4th day and even more on the last full day on your cruise. Hold out, or go ashore.
Cabo San Lucas, the ship had several recommendations for tours. The Arc & Lovers Beach Snorkel – 3 hours $69.99. The 4 X 4 Desert Safari is 3.5 hours, to see Baja Culture is $99.99 each. Very fast tender at Cabo. Large local ships, transport you. Massages were only $20 for 60 minutes. Easy to find. We were in Cabo two days, and received two massages. Ship moves out to sea over night, then returns in the morning. Security in Cabo wasn’t a problem for us, as we stayed within the port area. Puerta Viarda you walk off the ship. No much at port to see. Massages were more expensive, thus didn’t do the third one. Internet pretty cheap if you need to do that. There was a medical emergency on our return to Long Beach, so the ship did a fast stop, again, at Cabo.
Cabins available after 2pm. We booked a inside cabin. Very good storage cabinets, shelves and desk drawers. Has flat screen TV (not HD), plenty of walking space if you have your bed divided to twins. We stored our luggage under the beds, which worked out very well. Has large desk with 4 drawers. Also chair, padded, and ottoman. Has small oval table also. Room Service A+. We bought our own wine and when we ordered the glasses, they asked us if we wanted red or white glasses. Stateroom bathrooms, watch your step. You step up about 4 inches to go in. Curtain for shower. Layout inside excellent, with shelves for your needs. The electrical outlet, look above the mirror on the right side. We didn’t see it until we were packing to leave. Also a outlet above the desk. NO DVD player in the room. Some cruise lines do have it. Beds very comfortable, with duvet and two thick pillows. Plenty of mirrors throughout room. Yes, they have towel animals. Cabin steward actually threw my clothes on the floor, so he could put the towel animal on the small oval table. Ugh. So, that night I put his towel animal on the floor. The next day, he put it on the ottoman. I guess he got the point. The last night of the cruise, I was talking a shower before going to bed. This same stewart, apparently knocked on the door and came in (or at least his head). When I turned the shower off, I heard talking (I left the TV on, and the bathroom door open). Seemed strange as the conversation had a direction….to me. I actually talked to him, while naked in the shower, telling him to leave the booze we bought on board outside. He told me no, someone would take it, that he would leave it in the room. This guy, wasn’t getting a tip from us. He was good about knocking on the door, until we would leave so he could clean it. Hint: Leave the SNOOZING sign on your door, if you want left alone. Temp and water pressure, never a problem in our room. NO hand lotion, bring your own. Keep your money, etc., locked up in your safe. I heard someone did get their purse taken on board. Temperature control in your room you can control, but you have no idea what the temp is. The gauge is simply red or blues…
Prohibited in all guest staterooms. Balcony cabins ok to smoke on balcony. Ok to smoke on open deck starboard right side of ship. Casino ok to smoke while playing (you will get blasted with the smell when you walk by). All Spa staterooms and suites NO smoking including balconies.
For those that have cruised on Carnival 2 or more times, are invited to an event with horsedrives and drinks. Decent selection of pre-made drinks. Of course you can order a drink and pay…
Here is the information provided to our cabin on the 2nd day of the cruise.
Stateroom service is $3.70 per day per person
Dining room is $5.80 per day per person
Alt. (no details) is $2.00 per day per person
There was 4450 people on board, I would assume some were crew.
Waiting for it, was told it would be mailed/emailed to us.