Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
coupon4diva

Coupon4diva's Carnival Fantasy Review 1/23/15-1/28/15

Recommended Posts

Hello Everyone! This is my first review on cruise critic, and I am very excited to share my experience on the Carnival Fantasy. This review is my take on various hot topics regarding the ship, the ports, the crew and gives my overall rating.

First let me start by saying last year was a very challenging year for me. I was/am very determined to make 2015 the best year ever and it started with this cruise. It was a special gift to me from a very special someone. :D The cruise was booked at the end of December so the race was on to get prepared. I went straight into research mode looking up anything I could about the ship, ports, excursions etc. Now I didn't mention that I already have two cruises booked for this year so I was already in the midst of searching for information via cruise critic, shipmates etc. I just needed to take it up a notch because the 23rd was going to be here before I knew it. Thank God I did not need to buy any clothes because I have more than enough stuff. The only thing that I did get was two bathing suits. Well anyway on with the show!

 

Day 1

We flew into Charleston that morning. (What I jokingly refer to as the cardinal sin of cruising!) After reading all of the reviews and tips it felt as if everyone else was traveling in the day before. I was a little apprehensive, but what’s done is done. We had an uneventful flight, landed safely in Charleston around 10:00am and were loaded into the cab by 10:20am. We made a quick stop to pick up two bottles of wine and was at the port by 11:00am. All in all a seamless process, until....duh duh duhhh we got to the gate.

 

Well upon arrival to the gate our cab driver, Mr. Joe, realized that he left his license at home. He said it should be fine since he comes to the port everyday and he had all of his other documents. Well the lady at the gate was not that agreeable. In fact she told him he could not drop us off and he would need to turn around. Unbelievable, we literally had a few feet to go before being dropped off (okay, not literally but you get the point). Well our cab driver was quick on his feet, and able to arrange for the cab behind us to take us the rest of the way. So a quick switch over and we were finally off to our destination.

 

I was a little leery about this port and was more than ecstatic when I was able to snag the FTTF 9 days before the cruise. Word to the wise-always check the website to see if it becomes available because initially it was sold out. Once we were dropped off the porter took our bags. He put special stickers on our bags and assured us that it would be taken care of. I tipped him and we walked over to the shuttle. There were a few seats left on the first shuttle so we hopped on around 11:10am and was at the terminal by 11:17am. Once at the terminal we went through security, filled out the health questionnaire then were sent over to the check in desk. The process was unbelievably smooth, we had our pictures taken and were on the boat by 11:47am. Once on-board we went straight to our room, which was ready and good to go!

 

My two cents- All of the talk about this port being so horrible is really a bit of a stretch. I'm not sure if the process was so easy because of the FTTF, or because of the time we got there, maybe even because we were dropped off as opposed to driving down and parking at the warehouse, but it was definitely not as bad as others have posted. Which once again is why I take everything I read with a grain of salt. I have nothing but good things to say about our embarkation process, even with the initial issue at the gate.

 

Okay so we are in our cabin looking around and decided to get something to eat. I was famished especially since I had been up since 4:00am. We went up to the Lido deck and had cheeseburgers and fries. My food was cold but good.

ry%3D315

The temperature outside was a little cold, but we sat out there anyway. Once we were done we headed straight back to the cabin. We got back to the cabin at around 12:30pm and our bags were waiting. We unpacked and relaxed (ahem, I meant slept) until the muster drill, which was at 4:00pm.

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

 

Our cabin, R-127 was an Oceanview located on the Riviera deck. I didn't have any real problems with the cabin or location. I truly believe that being on a lower deck mid ship is the best way to go if you have issues with seasickness. I personally don't suffer with it but I also didn't want to find out so there you have it.

 

Anyway, the cabin was reasonably clean and since I have a slight case of OCD I was definitely on the prowl! The only thing that bothered me a little was our window. It was dirty. You will see a little later on the pictures I took from the cabin. I did also note that we didn't have any goodies in the clam shell. I kept forgetting to ask the room steward about it so I guess it wasn't that important to me. (as my handle suggests I am a couponer so anyone that knows me will probably be surprised to hear that I didn't follow up on freebies...lol)

 

I didn't take the standard photos of the room but I have a few showing how I unpacked my things and the items in my over the door shoe organizer. That was a tip I learned on YouTube and it was the best thing ever. Everything is right at your reach and organized as well!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Enjoying your review, anxious to read more. We cruised on the Fantasy over Christmas and it was a perfect cruise!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking forward to your reviews! We sail on Fantasy Sept 19,2015!

Edited by tami61860

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay so when I left off we were sleeping and get ready folks because that was the trend of our cruise. We got up for the muster drill held at 4:00pm. Our muster station was in the Cats Lounge. They went over the safety procedures and asked us to form two lines. Well due to the weather they decided to skip going out to the life boats. It was short and sweet as they counted us as we came in so no need to go over the list again.

 

The process was pretty efficient and painless. We went straight back to the room for some more relaxation (sleep) until dinner. We selected the My Time Dining, which really worked for us. The boat was rocking pretty good by this time so sleeping was the best way to go, not to mention I had been up since 4:00am and barely slept the night before. Unfortunately we did not get to meet up with a couple I met on ship mate because we slept through it. Sorry Kristin!

 

My two cents- I'm not sure why everyone complains about the inevitable. The muster drill is a must. You should be happy to learn about the procedure put in place in case something bad happens. Why wouldn't you want to be prepared. Yes, I know that when you have 60 cruises under your belt you already know the information but keep in mind there are always new cruisers on board who find this information pertinent.

 

Anyway we got up and went to dinner in the Celebration Dining Room at around 6:45pm. The boat was really rocking and continued through dinner. Luckily I didn't witness anyone being sick while I ate dinner. That has always been a fear of mine and after reading some reviews about the Fantasy, I must admit I was scared. We were seated at a table with 2 other couples. Incidentally they were both from South Carolina. The couple to my left were veteran cruisers, who loved the Fantasy. In fact they barely got off the ship in the Bahamas because of the numerous times they've been there. The husband was retired from the Navy and the wife was a teacher. The couple to my right were new cruisers. The husband, who complained about everything (inside joke-he was a pretty cool guy)was a chemist and his wife was an accountant. We all had some interesting conversation. The food was okay that night. The wait staff didn't really wow me with their service but they were pretty efficient.

 

shrimp cocktail, veggie rolls and salmon for me

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

The salmon was bland but I also had an order of mashed potatoes, which was great!!

 

caesar salad and steak for my honey

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

He said the steak was tender.

 

brisket for my table mate to the right

ry%3D400

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for posting your review. We will be on the Fantasy in about 3 weeks. I keep finding different answers about hair dryers on the Fantasy; did your Stateroom have a hair dryer?

 

Hey..thanks for reading!

 

No, I did not have a hair dryer in my cabin. Keep in mind we had an oceanview. I'm not sure what comes in the other categories.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Enjoying your review, anxious to read more. We cruised on the Fantasy over Christmas and it was a perfect cruise!

 

Glad to hear you are enjoying my review so far!! Thanks for reading!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@coupon4Diva....So glad you saw thru some of the Charleston detractors. We have cruised out of Charleston 6 times. We parked at the port 1 time and had no issues. The other 5 times we did a Park and Cruise deal which we will always do on cruises no matter which port we sail from. We love the Charleston port and aren't all the port employees amazing?

 

 

Misslucy01

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for posting your review. We will be on the Fantasy in about 3 weeks. I keep finding different answers about hair dryers on the Fantasy; did your Stateroom have a hair dryer?

 

 

Ask your Cabin Steward for a dryer and he will bring you one.

 

 

Misslucy01

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hey..thanks for reading!

 

No, I did not have a hair dryer in my cabin. Keep in mind we had an oceanview. I'm not sure what comes in the other categories.

 

Thanks for the info. We were on the Fantasy in 2012 but could not member if there was a hairdryer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dessert- creme brulee for me and warm chocolate melting cake for honey

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

 

Oops before I forget here is the first towel animal.

ry%3D400

 

While we're on the subject or should I say before I forget this part as well, the robes were a big disappointed.:( I had thoughts of going to the hot tub in my robe and bathing suit. Yes, I did read quite an extensive thread on whether robes outside of the cabin is acceptable. My thoughts were I would just wear them up to the hot tub at night since it was chilly and then right back to the room. Well that never happened as I never got a chance to wear my robe. First of all as I mentioned before I have a slight case of OCD, so I thoroughly inspected the robe only to find it was soiled. Okay, so let me be clear it wasn't a big obvious soil mark or anything, but it was enough for me to not want to wear it. I brought it to the attention of our room steward Yucef and instead of just acknowledging my concern, he decided to go back and forth with me about whether the robe was in fact clean. That whole exchange was incredibly annoying as I am not blind and I know what I saw. He finally decided to take the robes and walked down the hall while muttering something. I went out into the hallway and he was still mumbling with his coworker. Well needless to say that put a bad taste in my mouth, but I decided to leave it alone and continue enjoying my vacation. He came back a few minutes later with new robes or at least I think they were new. The second set was actually no better than the first. My honey is my witness as he was there for the whole thing. I really should have taken a picture. I just left them in the corner and didn't even bother for the rest of the cruise. He definitely lost points for this.

 

 

My midnight snack from room service.

ry%3D400

 

Room service was usually pretty fast. No complaints in this area! Honestly I don't think I should have been eating that late anyway but I was on vacation!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
@coupon4Diva....So glad you saw thru some of the Charleston detractors. We have cruised out of Charleston 6 times. We parked at the port 1 time and had no issues. The other 5 times we did a Park and Cruise deal which we will always do on cruises no matter which port we sail from. We love the Charleston port and aren't all the port employees amazing?

 

 

Misslucy01

 

You are absolutely right everyone was so friendly and welcoming. I was still in disbelief thinking about how fast and smooth everything went. I was expecting so much more!! Thanks for reading!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Day 2-Sea day

 

We played the wake up/go back to sleep dance for a while and around 10:30am officially got up. It was cloudy, rainy, and the ship was rocking. We decided to get ready and go to the sea day brunch. I was fully equipped with ginger root tablets and MotionEaze oil behind my ear. My first cruise was on RCI Grandeur of the Seas, which left from Baltimore. I don't remember having as much rocking back then but I did read a lot about it on the reviews so I wanted to be prepared. We went up to the Celebration Dining Room for brunch. We were seated at a two top table. Service was great and fast. Prior to cruising I reviewed the brunch menu and could not wait to try the huevos rancheros. I love spicy food, after all I am from Trinidad! Well it definitely lived up to my expectation. I actually had two orders of it that day. Boat rocking or not I had to have more. I absolutely love food!! It was really tasty. My honey had the same thing and we ended our meal with some fruit.

 

Our view when we woke up...definitely stay in the bed weather!

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

 

Then guess what happened as the day went on....the clouds started to go away!!

ry%3D400

 

The honey and I at brunch.

ry%3D400

 

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After brunch we decided to explore a little of the ship. Let me start by saying upon arrival into the port the appearance of the ship left much to be desired. However, I did not have high expectations as I already knew this was the oldest ship in the fleet. What I was not expecting was the amount of rust on the side of the ship. I made a mental note but didn't say anything about it. Incidentally when we came back from our excursion in Freeport there were workers painting the side of the ship. How funny is that? At first glance I thought they were cleaning the windows so I excitedly pointed that out to my honey. He then corrected me and as I looked a little closer I realized that they were actually covering the rust marks under the windows. I guess I wasn't the only person who thought it was unsightly. Well with that being said the Fantasy definitely has character. I think that is what brings people back for repeated trips. There is a real nostalgic feel to most of the common areas. It screams 80's music and bad hair...lol! (just a little joke no hate mail please) Did I mention they played Kenny G at dinner the first night? It's on the brink of being cheesy but before you have time to really dissect the appearance there goes another crew member offering you a smile and/or a drink! There you have it folks- great customer service will make you forgive a multitude of ills. I know this for a fact. The crew on the Fantasy is a very hard working group. Their number one job is to make you feel welcomed and they do a very good job of it. So where the ship might miss in terms of bells and whistles it definitely makes up for it with a wonderful crew. They take pride in keeping the ship in good shape.

 

Okay so back to our exploration. We ended up at the shops(surprise). Honey was sweet enough to buy me the beach bag I had my eye on. It really came in handy when we went out on the islands. I did actually pack a beach bag but that never stops a lady for wanting something new! Below I'll post some pictures of the boat.

 

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At around 6:30pm we headed back to the room to get ready for dinner. This was the only Elegant night of the cruise. Honey went to the laundry room to iron his shirt and while he was gone there was knock at the door. Apparently one of the lights in our cabin went out so they came to fix it. The funny part was I didn't even notice that the light was out. Our room steward probably reported it. Definitely made up some points from the night before. We got ready for dinner and was on our way to the dining room by 8:30pm.

 

Christopher and his wait staff were incredible. I just can't say enough great things about him. He was such a personable and fun guy. He took special care of us that night. He made recommendations and they were right on point. He was just a top notch head waiter. He made sure that everything ran like a well oiled machine. I enjoyed his service so much so that I requested to be seated in his section the next time we had dinner in the dining room.

 

 

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

 

ry%3D400

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For me stuffed mushrooms, alligator fritters, shrimp cocktail, prime rib and lobster. For honey caesar salad, alligator fritters, prime rib and lobster.

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After a wonderful dinner, we took a few pictures and went back to the cabin so I could change my shoes. We then headed over to the Universe Lounge, where there was a Motown Tribute being held. The band was great and the singers really did good job. They played songs that everyone knew and some people we up dancing and really enjoying themselves. After the show we went to the Comedy Lounge for the late show. Kelly Terranova was the comedian and he was hilarious! The comedy shows turned out to be a really special treat on the cruise. I hope this holds true for the other ships. After the show we went back to the cabin for...yes you guessed it...relaxation!!

 

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

 

Towel animal that night...

ry%3D400

 

I'll tackle our day in Freeport a little later tonight if not tomorrow. Thanks for reading everyone!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fabulous pictures, wonderful review, beautiful couple!!!

 

 

Thank you! What a really sweet thing to say!!

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for the review. Loving it so far. Can't wait to read more!

 

 

Thanks for reading!

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Day 3-Freeport

 

We woke up at 6:45am just in time to see the sun rising. I took a few pictures from our cabin and then started getting ready for our day. My honey booked us the Freeport Kayak & Nature Experience with the Grand Bahama Natures Tour Company through Carnival's website. I had done some research on this company and they had great reviews on TripAdvisor so we felt comfortable with the choice. We went up to the Lido deck for breakfast and then a quick stop at guest services to figure out how the heck to get off the ship...lol! (Don't judge I really had no idea...hopefully this will help someone else) Just in case you're wondering we had to go to deck 3.

 

My two cents-I know that everyone is in the business of making money but I have to admit I was a little perturbed to learn that we had to book this tour with Carnival instead of directly with the company. We initially wanted to book the Jeep tour but when we called the company they advised that we would have to go through Carnival. Well, no problem right? Wrong, Carnival was charging $20-$40 more per person. (It was weird the price seemed to change depending on when I looked it up) No big deal right? Wrong, why in the world would I want to pay $40-$80 dollars more when I can use that money for something else. Personally everything turned out okay and this tour was only $10 more on the Carnival website (still a little bothersome for a bargain hunter but what can you do?!?) but I don't think I should be penalized because I was on a cruise as opposed to staying at a hotel.

 

Our excursion was due to depart at 8:30am and was basically a whole day trip. We had a 20 minute ride to the Lucayan National Park, where we would have a quick bathroom break and then head over to the kayaks. The kayak tour would be approximately 2 miles through the mangrove. It started out to be a stressful situation because I had no idea how to kayak and we kept bumping into the mangrove. Well finally Bradley, our wonderful tour guide, decided to hook us up to his kayak and things got better. The kayak ride was a really nice experience. Bradley gave us lots of information of what we could expect to see in the water, in the trees and explained the different types of mangroves we would encounter. Once the kayak portion was done, we had another quick bathroom break and then headed over to the floating bridge. In order to get across Bradley had to pull a rope from the other side and it slowly would move us over. I have a picture of where I helped to pull the rope and boy was it hard work.(okay so maybe I was just pretending to pull the rope...good photo op anyway!)

 

Once across we decided to do the nature walk before the going to the beach. That was also very informative. He taught us about the myriad of vegetation that the island had to offer. The island also boasts of 6 ecosystems all found right in the park. Very interesting stuff!! Once the nature walk was over we went over to the beach. There are no words to describe the beauty of this beach! Apparently this is the same beach where they filmed The Pirates of the Caribbean. It was breathtaking! The day was perfect, not too hot or cold. The water was a bit chilly but with the sun shining down it was the perfect balance. A small piece of paradise!

 

We had lunch of sandwiches, fruit, cookies and juice. After our beach time we headed back through the park and Bradley fed the fish. Those fish were vicious. There was a little duck trying to get some of the bread and they would not let the poor duck get any. It was so funny; he finally grabbed a piece at the end.

 

The tour ended after a drive around downtown. Bradley took the time to show us the different buildings you could tell he loves what he does. He was a superb tour guide and filled with lots of information. I would definitely recommend this tour. There is something for everyone!!

 

Once back at the port, we walked around for a little bit and was back on the ship by 2:40pm.

 

Sunrise...sorry about the dirt from the window

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

 

Breakfast

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

ry%3D400

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • 2019 Cruisers' Choice Awards
      • Celebrity Edge in Europe Sweepstakes
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Community Contests
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...