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Inspiration review 12/25 -12/30


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I had an airline ticket to leave Toledo at 5:30am on the 23rd. Had hoped to get into Tampa and take a shuttle to visit my Dad in Sarasota for a couple of days before the cruise. Because of the storm predictions I went to the airport on the 22nd to see if I could fly down early. "sure" the girl told me, "for an EXTRA $450!!!!. Decided not to so went to a hotel. Suffice to say with the storm I didn't make it to Tampa till Christmas morning.


I met my DS and DIL at the airport. They had come in from Dayton. They showed up but their luggage didn't. DIL was very worried. I was thinking we should go and buy whatever was needed. We waited for 2 more planes to come in from their transfer and the luggage was on it. They had flown Usair so at least they got theirs! We took a cab to the ship. $20 plus tip. It was about 3pm by then and we hussled. No lines by that time and we went right on the ship. I had booked a 1A for myself and 4A for DS. First time I have had a 1A and wouldn't hesitate to book again. We were on the Upper deck in the back. Easy for elevators. And straight up to food! Never met my room steward. Think it was a woman but no one ever introduced themselves. Room was taken care of but nothing special. Because of a note I had written to Carnival about how good my last cruise was we had plates of appetizers in our rooms. Also recieved 4 coupons for $15 off pictures - good on any size. Also a coupon for a cheese plate.


First night we ate in the dining room and the ship was rocking a little bit. My DIL had to go back to their cabin but was fine the next morning. We had a day at sea first which I like as you can relax and really get in the vacation mode!


The next day was supposed to be Grand Cayman. It was too rough and the port was closed. We had been there before so we were not too disappointed. Didn't really hear anyone upset about it. We did recieve $25 ship credit. The ship went to the other side of GC to take on some people who had missed the ship in Tampa. Also picked up about 100 pieces of luggage that missed the ship too. Did manage to get a little sun.


The next stop was Cozumel. We had a beach day at Playa de Mia. it was very nice and I am glad we got there early. Later on it got very crowded. Left there and went shopping.


I had written a note to the captain asking if my son could have a bridge tour. He is an electrical engineer and has always wanted a tour. So after shopping we headed back to clean up and were given a tour. Really was very interesting. Nice of them to do it.


Next a sea day. Had quite enough sun in Coz so I did some reading and ship board shopping. Then the packing.


I only went to a couple of shows - good. My DS and Dil went to several shows and enjoyed them all. They said the lightnight comediene was very funny.


Getting off was unusually quick. Did not hear them calling and calling passengers to come to imigration as we usually do. Everyone must have gotten it right! Cab to the airport!


Overall it was a good cruise. Food was good although I am not fond of theme nights that are spilling over from Princess to Carnival. One night there was an Indian theme. Have never noticed this on Carnival before. Prime rib and filets are still very good!


Ship was clean and I didn't notice any dirty carpets but then again I wasn't looking for them. Very nicely decorated for Christmas. We never waited in long lines even for the buffet. We ate breakfast in the dining room several times - something I usually don't do. Really enjoyed it. Like eating a hot meal. Usually I just grab something in the buffet line and I know it is hard to keep things hot there.


It was a very relaxing cruise and knowing we were missing the cold and snow at home just added to it!


One last note - After arriving home there was a message on my answering machine from Delta telling me that because of the coming storm they would change my ticket going down for no fee! This was after it took me 3 days to get down! After cancelling ever flight they put me on, they finally put me on ATA to Chicago, then Atlanta, then Tampa Christmas morning! But I did make it! Would have been so much easier if they had let me go early when I asked! Not sure I will cruise at Christmas again. Will be happy to answer any questions!

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thanks for the review, we are on the Inspiration 1/31/05. Our second cruise, first time on Carnival. I'm also not a fan of theme food. I especially don't do Mexican or Indian. Will there be more plain fare avaliable? On fun days at sea or there activities available? What dinner seating did you have? thanks for any info.

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Thanks for the review. We loved our Inspiration cruise ours was the 7 day out of Tampa last April and it was one of the best cruises for us. There's lots of things going on during Sea Days, just check your capers.

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I didn't see other non-theme fare. Might have been and I didn't check very closely. I ended up at the deli with a turkey sandwich. Nice deli sandwiches. The regular daytime activities. Contests by the pool, horseracing, bingo, Newlywed game. Also had trivia and a scavenger hunt. We had late (8pm) seating in the Carnivale dining room. I had requested early seating but didn't get it and decided to try late dining. It was too late for me. I like to eat earlier and see the early shows. Eating at 8 and then trying to see a show at 10:30 didn't work for me.



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We were up in the Findlay (OH) area over Christmas and know all about the airport issues, especially with Comair! Needless to say, you were VERY lucky to fly out of Toledo before Christmas!


Glad to hear that you enjoyed your cruise, regardless of the travel issues.


:cool: Bill

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The ship was clean; cabin steward very friendly and very sea-sick after first night. The weather was cool and cloudy. Very rough seas - so glad we took bonine and used sea bands. Third time we were unable to dock at Grand Cayman. Does it even exist? Had a fantastic waiter in the Mardi Gras Dining room -- Edi from Bali. He was superb and well worth the extra tips. Chairs were very scarce on deck once we had sun. They need to correct this problem as people were most unhappy with having to lay on their towels. Food was very good and plentiful; can't get enough of their pizza! Spent the day at Paradise Beach on Cozumel, very clean and inexpensive way to enjoy the beach, water, and use of all the toys. The ship was decorated tastefully but I won't travel during the holiday in the future. I missed having Christmas at home. (even with the 8 inches of snow). Lenny was the CD; we enjoyed him again after sailing on Sensation a couple of years ago. We won't sail to Western Caribbean again; same old ports, same old story about Grand Cayman. We do enjoy Carnival, though. It is definitely the Fun Ship!

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Glad to hear you had a good time!

I'll be cruising on the Inspiration early Feburary, with my family (I'm 13).

Can't wait. This will be my first cruise, so I'm really excited..I'm worried about meeting other kids my age, though. My best friend went on a cruise last year and had no trouble meeting people. But I don't know...how many kids were on the ship compared to adults? Were there many teenagers aboard? I really hope to meet people, but I guess if I don't then I can always tan or something :p .

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