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About mominwestlake

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    Cool Cruiser
  1. Sorry if this is a silly question, but will Verizon wireless work on our Carnival Legend cruise or will we want to get the social media plan? I know that my kids will want to post on Instagram and have Facebook messenger.
  2. We have the 4K booked on the Legend in June. I am glad I read this before getting on board and finding out that there is no longer a French door that can be opened for air. It will be interesting to see if Carnival gives you any more that $25.
  3. We have a suite booked for 4 people on the Carnival Legend this summer. Final payment is due in 2 weeks. So far we have only paid a $200 per person deposit. We just found out that my daughter won't be able to go. I am trying to figure out if it would be cheaper to call Carnival, cancel her and then we will have to book a different cabin. Or if we just have her not show. Will we still have to pay the tips for her if she doesn't show? I didn't buy cruise insurance for her but I think I could still add it. It's $189 so I am not sure that makes sense. The cost for her to cruise was $525. Advice anyone?
  4. mominwestlake

    Is the Triumph that bad?

    We sailed on the Triumph this past April (2017) after cruising on the Magic in December (2016). It was my husband, our 15 year old son, and myself. While the ship wasn't as nice as the Magic, It still was a great cruise for 5 nights. We had no complaints and loved sailing on the Mississippi. We went into it knowing it wasn't the newest or largest ship, and all 3 of us were happy and would sail the Triumph again.
  5. mominwestlake

    Rearranging occupants?

    You are able to book TBA? How do you go about doing this? Can you book it that way online? This is new to me and would help us out greatly since our children aren't sure who can cruise with us next summer.
  6. mominwestlake

    My daughter's Carnival Magic December 2016 Wedding

    So sorry that I just saw this. My daughter said they contacted her about 35 days out. Hopefully someone will contact you soon if they haven't already!
  7. mominwestlake

    American Table and the Pies they offer

    We cruised with 37 people on the Magic last week, and the pies were a big hit with our group. They were served warm with ice cream, and everyone looked forward to finding out what kind of pie it would be each night.
  8. mominwestlake

    My daughter's Carnival Magic December 2016 Wedding

    They had carrot cake as a dessert one night in the dining room. I had it, and it was really good!
  9. mominwestlake

    My daughter's Carnival Magic December 2016 Wedding

    Mindymarie, Here is what my daughter chose for her cake: Red velvet with cream cheese Chocolate with chocolate filling White with strawberry filling We liked all of them. The top layer was the one they cut into. There were 3 different photo packages as well as ala cart items available to us. I know my daughter had a copy of the photo packages before the photographer gave us the exact same one. The photographer took both video and photos during the reception and then made a short video for us. The quality wasn't great and it was thrown in for free.
  10. My daughter just had her wedding last week through Carnival, so I thought I would do a thorough review that will hopefully help others. We booked the cruise last January for this December 2016 on the Carnival Magic. The 7 day cruise had 4 port days. My daughter wanted to get married on a beach, so she chose Bolongo Bay in St. Thomas on the 4th day. We wanted everyone going on the cruise (37 total) to fly in the day before the cruise. We booked 2 bedroom/2 bathroom suites for everyone at the Port Canaveral Residence Inn. They were so nice to us- especially Kristy at the front desk. It was nice having breakfast included. The back patio, bar, and pool area were enjoyed by all of our guests. Restaurants were in walking distance. The hotel had a shuttle to take everyone from the hotel to the port ($4 per person 1 way) and our 1 party that drove was able to keep their car at the hotel for the week with no cost. Samantha made sure that all of our guests received the out of town bags we had assembled. We arrived at the port around 10:45 and waited maybe a half hour to board. I highly recommend this hotel. We used Smart-Two Shuttles to take our guests from the airport to the hotel and from the ship to the airport. This was a great company to work with. They tracked flights and contacted each party as they arrived at the airport/cruise port. The vans they used were clean and roomy. Their drivers were very friendly and knowledgeable. They were on time or early for each party that arrived. I highly recommend them too. We dealt with 2 wedding planners. One was with Carnival since our reception was on board and the other was with Royal Ocean Events (Carnival uses them for weddings on St. Thomas). We didn’t hear much from them until around 60 days out. They were always willing to answer questions, but really didn’t want our specifics until closer to the wedding. We did make sure to book the steel drum player for the ceremony. They waited too long to book the videographer and weren’t able to get one. I think they only take 1 wedding a day for that. There were 3 weddings in St. Thomas on our cruise. They chose to make their own wedding playlist, but if you want to have the Carnival DJ you need to book that asap too. My daughter and her fiancee chose Bolongo Bay because there was a room she could get ready in. She didn’t want him to see her in her dress until the ceremony. We found so many pictures online of the ceremony site. She was able to get ideas for decorating the ceremony site online. She emailed what she wanted for the bamboo arch and the bouquets with pictures to Royal Ocean Events. It was hard for us to be so hands off for this, but they took her pictures into account and the bouquets, boutonnieres and arch were beautiful. The chairs at the event were white. Instead of paying extra for sashes or chair coverings, we brought big white star fish with coral ribbons attached to hang on each chair on the aisle. I think this looked really pretty and saved us some money. We also paid for each guest to have champagne for the toast. This was served in a small plastic cup. They had a small cake for the bride and groom to cut. They did serve it to the guests and it was really tasty. We brought all our decorations and favors with us and gave them to the Bolongo Bay ladies to set up on a table. 
In terms of the reception, we chose Time to Celebrate Big, the 1.5 hour option that Carnival offers. If you can afford it, I recommend going with the Time to Celebrate Bigger. The wedding couple only did basics- only they were introduced. The father/daughter and mother/son dance were combined. There were 2 toasts and cake cutting. They did not throw a bouquet or garter. It seemed like it was over so quickly. 
They found out on the ship that their reception would be in the Spotlight Lounge on the ship. The room was nice enough, but I think the lighting was funky and made it hard to photograph the cake and cake cutting/ toast. Everything seemed to have an orangish tint. Servers had some popular drinks ready for when we arrived and guests could order whatever they wanted from the bar in the room. There was a lot of food and the way it was presented was really pretty. The bride and groom paid $50 extra so they could have a 3 tier cake with each layer a different flavor. They cut the top layer to feed each other. We provided the topper but just went with what Carnival did for the decorating of the cake. It was simple and pretty. Leftover cake was served the next 2 nights at dinner (we did ask to have this done). The cake was really tasty! Providing our own music for the reception went fine. Carnival did provide someone to announce the bride and groom and when things were happening. The wedding planner was there the whole time. She set up a table for when people entered with our decorations, favors and guest book. The Carnival wedding planner met with my daughter and the groom the 2nd day of the cruise and then the next 2 nights at dinner. We received the time of the wedding, wedding day details and the reception location on day 2. The planner was very sweet and wanted to make sure the bride and groom were happy. They also met the Carnival photographer for the reception on day 2. A letter was sent to guest staterooms to let them know wedding details on day 2 also. The day of the wedding- that morning the Carnival photographer came to their stateroom for pictures of the bride getting ready and then the groom getting ready. The bride and groom were being picked up at noon ship time by the planner for the trip to the courthouse. We were able to bring 4 others with us. We brought the dress, veil, shoes and any ceremony decorations with the bride and groom. We were taken in an air conditioned van by our driver to the courthouse. The bride, groom and best man went in, and it took them 15 minutes or so. We then went to Bolongo Bay. Someone met us from the hotel and took the bride, MOB, MOH, and our makeup artist to the room to get ready. The groom and best man were taken to the ceremony site. The bride had already had her hair and makeup done on the ship, but wanted touchups after she got her dress on. 

This time didn’t go as smoothly as we wanted. The Bolongo Bay wedding planners didn’t come to the room. We were under the impression that a photographer would come to the room for photos, but they never came. My daughter waited to get dressed because she wanted a photo of her dress on the hanger.Finally a bridesmaid came to check up on us and we told her to get the 1 of the 2 Bolongo Bay planners who were at the ceremony site (we could see them through the window). The planner came and told my daughter to get dressed and the photographer would only be taking ceremony pictures. Carnival uses someone on the island to take ceremony photos and then that photographer gave the flashcard to the onboard photographer. Our other wedding guests were picked up at 1:00 and taken in vans to the ceremony site. They had a good hour to wait for the ceremony to begin. I think they could have been brought later to the site because they really just stood around.

The bride and I were brought to the ceremony location by golf cart. The steel drum was playing as her father and I escorted her down the aisle. The weather was perfect! 
We had exactly 1 hour of beach time for the ceremony and photos. I did feel we were a little rushed and wish the photographer had taken more large group shots. But really everything was perfect. 
And good news- we were able to get the fresh flower bouquets back on the ship! This was something I couldn’t get a clear answer on.
The same vans brought us all back to the ship for the reception. Once on board we did have to wait a little on deck 1 for the planner to come and get us to take us to the location. We weren’t sure if the reception was starting right away or not. We ended up waiting for 15 minutes or more for her and I wish we had had more clear instructions for this. We got to see the photos on the last night at 5 pm. The photographer had 2 albums made for us- 1 ceremony and 1 reception, a video from the reception and a few hundred photos for us to look at. We did end up buying the $3000 package which included all photos that were printed out in 8 X 10 size, the video, 1 large album (we chose the ceremony album), 2 large canvases, and 2 USBs with all the photos. Overall, we were happy with the photos taken. 

Many of our guests took pictures on their phones throughout the week and posted these on instagram and facebook with a wedding hashtag my daughter chose. It’s been wonderful looking at everyone’s photos. We gave certain people who we knew would take and post pictures a $30 Carnival giftcard in their out of town gift bag to cover the cost of having the Carnival Social Media plan which was $30 for the cruise. This was something we were so happy that we did. Guests were able to take photos on their phones during the ceremony and at the reception- something we weren’t sure if they would be able to do with the Carnival wedding photo policy. 

I apologize for this being so long, but I know any review that I read during our planning period was super helpful. I am happy to answer any questions and will try to post pictures later. I am not really sure how! 

Our week on the Carnival Magic was magical! I know that all of our guests had a fantastic time and I am glad my daughter and her HUSBAND (!) chose this type of wedding. 

  11. How easy is it to be dropped off for the Carnival Magic out of Port Canaveral? My daughter is having 33 people stay at the Residence Inn the night before the cruise. My husband is thinking of renting a 13 passenger van so we will have transportation the day before. Thinking of then making a couple of trips to take our guests from the hotel to the ship before he turns in the van at the Budget rental return place. Does this seem doable? Or more of a hassle? Thanks for any advice.
  12. My daughter is getting married this month during our Carnival cruise. She's getting married in St. Thomas, which is day 4 of the cruise. I just read that we can't bring a steamer on board the ship. I know Carnival provides irons, but we can't iron her dress, her veil or the bridesmaids dresses. Any suggestions? We are staying at a hotel 2 days before embarking. We could steam things there, but how would we get them to and on the ship without wrinkling? I can't believe the wedding is almost here!
  13. I know that we need to use the Carnival Photographer for our wedding ceremony and reception. My sister in law is a professional photographer and she is cruising with us. Can she take photos of us after the Carnival photographer is finished? Or family portraits at other times during the week? is she prohibited from bringing any of her professional equipment on board?
  14. mominwestlake

    2016 Brides!

    Heather, your wedding pictures are beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing. I have a question for you. Do you know where the lady in the yellow dress found her dress? I assume she is the mother of either your husband or you.
  15. My daughter is getting married on a Carnival ship and we have 14 cabins booked with those joining us. My daughter would like several people in the party to have the social media plan so they can post pictures on instagram. She would like to pay the $25 charge for them as part of their favor for sailing with us. I was thinking we could just put a $25 Carnival gift card in with their other favors, but I can't find them anywhere in that denomination. My question is would a visa gift card work just as well? Does the charge go on your sign and sail account? If so, can you use a visa gift card to pay that? Or do you pay with a credit card when you sign up on your phone for the social media plan?