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  1. When I used my Diamond upgrade two years ago, I called the Diamond number and they automatically upgraded me from an OV to a Balcony stateroom of my choosing. I didn't waste my upgrade on a 3, 4 or 5 night sailing but used it on an 8 day southern Caribbean sailing. So, I paid for an OV room on the Main deck and stayed in a Balcony stateroom on the Lido deck, cool. I mentioned to the Carnival rep when booking my cruise that I wanted to get my reservation in before it expired and she said that they would still honor it after the expiration date. I don't know if this is common practice.
  2. When we decided to book a day excursion at the Marriott in St. Kitts, I contacted them via email and reserved four day passes at $35/person. They requested a credit card # to hold the reservation and when we arrived, we checked in at the front desk, given wrist bands and were free to use the loungers on the beach and by the pool. All beaches are free to the public but the chairs and palapas are not and neither is the pool. When we went, there was a lot of seaweed on the beach and in the water so we parked our family at the swim up pool and had a wonderful day. The restrooms are clean and drinks and food available for an additional fee. The casino is available to any and all who want to gamble and is dark and nicely air conditioned. The grounds are beautiful and it was not crowded when we visited.
  3. I received my survey a few days after my return. I would suggest you call Carnival's toll-free number and request one. Do you regularly receive information/special sale emails from Carnival? If not, you can sign up on their web site. Maybe that is why you did not receive a survey?? Thanks for taking the time to complete the survey, the recognition from cruisers is very important to the staff. I never recognize bartenders because they're getting paid to hustle and promote. The people I recognize are the omelette cooks, cleaning staff, room steward, etc.
  4. I had to wait to book my upgrade from an OV to a balcony AFTER I attained Diamond status. Maybe someone had another experience, but this is what I was told while I was still Platinum.
  5. OMG, you made my mouth water. I always eat 4 eggs every morning on the ship (and at home) and some people in back of me have been surprised that you could order fresh eggs any way you like them instead of omelettes. The eggs tasted much better on the ship, maybe it was because I didn't have to cook them, ha!
  6. We sailed on the Magic in May of this year and whenever I got into the deli queue, people in front of me were ordering custom made sandwiches. The staff was very accommodating. I always had two hot dogs with chili or sauerkraut, delicious. The only condiment that I like on hot dogs they didn't have, sweet relish, so that's on my packing list for my next cruise. A gentleman in front of me ordered double corned beef on his sandwich and it looked pretty darn good. I agree with jbethel11, there were very few people at the omelette station (deli) in the aft section of the buffet when I was there. I'm an early riser so maybe that was the reason. The cooks were very fast making omelettes and my over easy eggs, never had to wait.
  7. You can also flavor your whipped butter with fresh herbs, orange or lemon juice even brown sugar would make a nice flavored whipped butter.
  8. Sure it does, let the butter soften to room temperature and whip until it is light in color then add cold water a little at a time.
  9. When Carnival emails me the survey after the cruise, I am definitely going to state my disappointment that they chose to eliminate the butter pats from all their cruise ships. I'm sure Carnival has addressed the problem because of all the complaints from cruisers since the announcement and the crock of whipped faux butter was their solution. I personally think that by eliminating the butter, Carnival is saving a lot of money. Carnival's reasoning behind eliminating the butter pats is that the foil paper mixes with food waste and clogs their garbage disposal.
  10. I'm going to freeze the butter and put it in my insulated container with a couple of ice packs before we leave the house and put it in my carry-on bag. It should be fine for hours. I usually book cruises from the Port of Miami (25 minutes from my house), Port Canaveral (2-1/2 hours), Port Everglades (15 minutes). I will have no problem keeping my yummy butter cold. When I sail out of Port Everglades, I am on board the ship within an hour of departure from my home. We are Diamond on Carnival and will be among the first people to board and can proceed directly to our stateroom and put our butter in the refrigerator. Even if we were not Diamond, the butter will stay in the insulated container for a very long time before it gets soft.
  11. No, there is no butter available any longer in the main dining room or the buffet or anywhere else on Carnival ships. What you see in the little ramekin in the dining room and the crock at the Lido buffet is whipped oleo, you know, vegetable oil with a sprinkling of salt and yellow food coloring. The waiters are calling this butter but it is definitely not butter. I am old enough to remember the rationing during WWII and standing in line with my mother, food stamps in hand, for sugar and bogus butter which was a clear plastic package of oleo/white goo with a little red/yellow food coloring button in the dead center. We took the pouch home and broke the button of color and massaged it into the vegetable oil until it was light yellow so it would give the appearance of butter but not the taste. Oleo is made from vegetable oil. Or, you can whip a small portion of butter with milk or water and it will expand and become whipped butter and go much further than real butter. The wait staff are either misinformed or are coached in what to say when people ask for butter. The first item on my cruise list for next year is 1) remember to pack real butter.
  12. Timmay 77....we have never been to Amber Cove so can't comment. We have been to LaRomana and was not impressed. We perused the Carnival shore excursions and the attractive ones were too pricey for our family so we just got off the ship and browsed around the port area where there is nothing much to see. One main building with a few souvenirs for sale and the rest of the building was alcohol. There was a beverage kiosk outside and don't remember what else. What struck me when we exited the ship were the armed security guards standing on the rampart above the dock...a little disconcerting. The last time we stopped in LaRomana, we stayed on the ship. Curacao is pretty special for us. The few times we have stopped there we have walked out to the taxi stand and went to Mambo Beach near the Blvd. shops. The taxi ride was $5/person the last time we were there. It is a beautiful beach which is protected by a rock seawall. When you approach the beach, you will be on the second level and can either walk down the stairs to the beach or take the elevator down. We rented chairs ($7/chair) by the tiki hut (very good Blue Hawaiian's). The snorkeling was great near that seawall, lots of fish. There are lots of little shops lining the upper deck and restaurants (even a Subway shop). There are restrooms where you can change before you leave. Also, plenty of taxis available for the return trip to the ship. We bring all our towels, etc., to our stateroom and debark again to walk around Curacao. You walk on the brick path to the RIF Fort and walk thru the Fort to the port area. There are restaurants and bars inside the fort and a nice ice cream store with plenty of seating in the courtyard. When you exit through the other side of the fort, there are lots of vendors selling souvenirs and you can proceed to the Queen Emma pontoon bridge and walk across to other stores and restaurants. The pontoon bridge lights up at night and the atmosphere is great. I believe the brick and mortar stores close at 6:00 p.m. Aruba has some of the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen and I live in Florida and have been to some awesome beaches throughout the State. We went to Eagle beach a few times and liked it but when we stopped at Aruba in May of this year, we took a taxi to Palm Beach and directed our taxi driver to drop us off at the paved walkway between the Hilton and RIU hotels. It was a short walk to the beach and we found a vendor renting chairs and umbrellas close to the Bugaloe Beach Bar (they have a web site if you're interested) which is on the pier. This was a perfect location, the beach was beautiful and clean, the water was breathtaking and we were close to the pier which had a restroom (very important when you are old or young). We walked to the pier and ordered take out food which was delicious and reasonably priced. I would return to Palm Beach in a heartbeat, just stunning. There is some shade provided by palm trees next to the walkway which runs the entire length of the beach in front of the hotels. You can also rent jet skis, etc. Don't worry about negative comments, you will be so happy to be on a cruise that minor faults or inconveniences will not affect your cruise experience on the Magic. We have sailed on almost every Carnival ship in the fleet and the Magic is one of our favorites because of the atmosphere, interaction with the crew, good food, and great ports of call on this itinerary.
  13. Don't believe everything you read on these boards. We sailed on the Magic in May 2019 and booked another cruise on her in April 2020. It is a beautiful ship with lots of fun things to do for adults and children. I don't look for flaws on any ship that I sail, I'm too busy having a good time. We had a balcony stateroom on Deck 10 and it couldn't have been more convenient to access the Lido buffet. Staff members were always cleaning tables, wiping railings down, etc. All the staff members (and officers) smiled and said hello from the dining room to the Lido deck to the casino, etc. I always ate breakfast at the Lido deck buffet because my family were late risers and every staff member that passed my table stopped to say hello and talk and ask if there was anything they could do for me or get for me. If a staff member recognized me from the MDR, they went above and beyond in making me comfortable. I ran out of room on my online survey form recognizing all the nice staff members on this ship. The food is subjective and the only thing I can say is if you can't find something at the buffet you like, try pizza, Guy Fieri burgers, Guy's BBQ, the deli (good hot dogs), Cucina del Capitano (free for lunch), etc. And, if you like layer cakes, please don't miss the assortment of delicious, mouth watering, layer cakes presented only at the buffet for lunch. OMG, I tried carrot cake, red velvet cake, raspberry champagne cake, hummingbird cake (my favorite). They were delicious and fresh and a great improvement over those dry cake pops and yucky brownies. Some had whipped cream frosting, cream cheese frosting, mirror glazes, yum. You did not mention your itinerary so I can't comment. Our port stops were Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay (beautiful), Aruba and Curacao. We had a WONDERFUL time on our cruise, don't let the negative comments get to you, you'll love this ship.
  14. We sailed on the Magic in April and the sugar packets available in the MDR and Lido buffet were raw sugar and artificial sugars. There were a few granulated sugar packets in the buffet but a member of the wait staff informed me that when the supply of granulated sugar packets are used, Carnival will not be ordering them again and will only have granulated sugar available in a bulk sugar dispenser. You will have to grab a soup spoon from the buffet if you measure your sugar. This doesn't bother me as much as eliminating the real butter packets in the MDR and buffet.
  15. We always tried to book one of these staterooms when sailing on the Legend and Pride. It was nice having the French doors but we booked it because it is classified as an interior stateroom but it is much larger than a regular interior and has the sofa and table. Our view was always staring out the doors at a lifeboat but we didn't book it for the view, we can go on any exterior deck when we wanted fresh air and a view. Also, the stateroom was not closed in and claustrophobic.
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