Sail Date: March 2019
Looking for Spring Break cruise out of Galveston, decided to try a bigger ship. The Vista feels like a just a bigger Carnival ship with more people and same number of spots. Everything seemed more expensive from drinks to seemingly ... Read More
Looking for Spring Break cruise out of Galveston, decided to try a bigger ship. The Vista feels like a just a bigger Carnival ship with more people and same number of spots. Everything seemed more expensive from drinks to seemingly everything "new" being a fee. The show theater "Liquid Lounge" is a joke. Pretty sure one could not come up with a worse design. Very few seats actually have an "acceptable" view of the stage and performances. Also much smaller, poor column placement, no floor rise, etc. The shows were also by far the worst I've seen on any ship. I don't know that I can blame the performers though as the stage and productions themselves would be near impossible to overcome. After 3 shows we like most people we talked too just stopped going. Every single person I discussed the shows and lounge had same opinion. If you love going to shows on your cruises, definitely would skip the Vista (and Horizon - same setup apparently). CD Matt was the highlight. He was great! Staff and crew on Vista was also great, no complaints there. Food was typical, good but tending to be bland. Guys burgers awesome. Piano bar great setup and musician. Overall the ship was "good", not "great". Plenty to do, but I guess was expecting more or something new that wasn't an extra fee. All three Carnival booked excursions though were bad. Poorly organized, behind schedule, very rushed. For this alone we plan on trying another cruise line or two before returning to Carnival. They seemed to really not care. All previous trips we had only minor issues if any (same destinations). I don't know what has happened but its definitely not the same as it was. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We had to go on spring break due to grandson being in high school now. I was worried about crowds on spring break and worried about Vista. Saw a lot of negative reviews regarding elevator waits, decor, food, chairs in lounges etc. I was ... Read More
We had to go on spring break due to grandson being in high school now. I was worried about crowds on spring break and worried about Vista. Saw a lot of negative reviews regarding elevator waits, decor, food, chairs in lounges etc. I was pleasantly surprised. Decor didn't bother me at all. Didn't miss the lack of big atrium. Elevators were no problem other than not being air conditioned. My husband passed out twice on elevator when we had to stand in long line to get on elevator at embarkation and then it was packed with no air. It was his blood pressure but the heat I think really escalated the issue. I will agree the food was sub par compared to other Carnival cruises we have taken..but it wasn't horrible as some reviews stated. We ate at JIJIs one night it was wonderful! Lido food was good.Great breakfast at Horizons every day. Staff was excellent. Very friendly. Only negative for me, which I read lots of reviews about...the Punch Liner Comedy..our favorite place to go..I agree it makes no sense they made it smaller and the chairs are very cheap and broken. Also in area where all the shows and bingo are...why on earth did they put in straight back chairs and do away with little tables. Bingo is done on a clip board and very inconvenient. Every time someone sits down their straight back chairs slides into your legs...its a design nightmare...whoever designed those areas should be given 40 lashes with a wet noodle. We only played bingo once and only went to one show because of the set uo. Overall, very pleased and wouldn't hesitate to go on Vista again. Read Less
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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We are avid cruisers. Platinum Carnival, Princess, and RCL. This ship by far is the poorest designed ship this cruiser has ever experienced. We sailed on her when she first started in Miami and decided to give her another chance now ... Read More
We are avid cruisers. Platinum Carnival, Princess, and RCL. This ship by far is the poorest designed ship this cruiser has ever experienced. We sailed on her when she first started in Miami and decided to give her another chance now that she has been in the system a while. First Matt, the cruise director is outstanding! Does what he can with what he has. Embarkation, outstanding, best ever seen. Room steward, probably the worst. Arrived at stateroom, no refrigerator, no life jackets, called pursers desk, purser argued with my wife about refrigerator being there “you just need to look in cabinet”. Reconfirmed life jackets missing, looked under bed for life jackets where they should be located now and confirmed that they were missing. Room steward met us in hallway and said refrigerator is on the way and life jackets are under the bed. I assured him that they were not. He asked if we wanted morning or evening service, I said both. He repeated morning OR evening service. My wife said evening is fine, New change in policy? I confirmed that it was not. Atrium music cancelled first night, no explanation. Atrium floor design bad for dancing, major thoroughfare for bartenders, photographers, and fellow cruisers. Also large support beam in middle of floor. Shows, main theater very poor design. Large beams block view of anyone lucky enough to get a seat. Seats on back row do not provide height to see over seats in front. Dancers were good, singing.... voices did not compliment each other. Comedy show, too small a venue, no seating 3 out of 4 shows arriving 20 minutes prior. Dancing, two floors suitable for dancing, Havana Bar and Ocean Plaza. Limelight lounge a impromptu floor, small and inadequate. Havana bar, small, good for Salsa, Rumba, and cha cha if no one else is dancing, band good. Ocean plaza, farmer band played polka after polka, only one beat. Voices did not compliment each other. Other band was good sometimes accompanied by three piece horns. Wednesday night singers didn’t show due to illness. Thursday night singers didn’t show for country but did show up later for Motown. No scale in fitness center. Was told that it’s use was only available during spa treatments. Food was adequate during cruise but had dropped in quality since last on vista. Carnival Magic and Dream are much better ships! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
While I love Carnival and have cruised them for years, I would have to honestly say that their newer ship, the Carnival Vista, quite disappointing. Pros and Cons from my perspective: For the Pros: -due to the overall size, the ship ... Read More
While I love Carnival and have cruised them for years, I would have to honestly say that their newer ship, the Carnival Vista, quite disappointing. Pros and Cons from my perspective: For the Pros: -due to the overall size, the ship appears to be very stable for handling the seas making for an enjoyable smooth cruise for those that sometimes fear feeling the motion at sea. While there is always some movement, considering the seas we encountered, I think it did well. -security and safety seemed to be good as well and I’ve always felt safe on the carnival line cruises. -Unfortunately I had to visit the infirmary during my cruise for a nasal infection, but as seen on previous times, Carnival has a very adept and professional medical staff aboard their vessels, and the Vista was no exception here. -The water recreation area, sky bikes, workout and outdoor activities on the upper deck for sports and activity enthusiasts are a plus and seem to be a real hit with everyone. -There were plenty of bar areas to adequately accommodate everyone’s thirst in a prompt time frame. -And, as with with all Carnival cruises and ships I’ve been on, the fun crew staff was very personable and accommodating. The Vista crew and staff went overboard, excuse the pun, to make sure everyone had a fantastic vacation. My personal hats off to our dinner host, Darko, our head waiter, Corina, our room steward, Putu, and to the Alchemy bar tender, Mark. I’d say Mark was one of the best bar tenders I’ve seen in some time for making custom drinks. His incredible ability to multi-task several customers and orders simultaneously, and quickly, without a flaw was very impressive. Now for the Cons: -Although the ship is larger allowing for a larger number of passengers, Carnival severely missed on addressing several areas such as: The rooms, the lido and pool areas, the casino, the dining experience, and food. -The rooms appear to be smaller than previous ships I’ve been on. We were in a porthole room, which compared to previous rooms of similar type, this one had far less space and closet storage. Speaking with a few others in different room types, it sounded as if the inside rooms and some of the window rooms were smaller, while the suites still similar to other ships. -As for the pool areas, while this ship boasts a larger size, the pool areas did not see an increase in size, which was a disappointment. The common pool areas appeared to be the same size as other boats. Finding seating was difficult and with a larger number of passengers. I would have expected more area for these pools and accommodating guests. I should add that this boat does have a third pool area at the rear of the boat this area was a private area only for guests that paid for the exclusive Havana suite rooms. A final comment on pools is that although Carnival will sometimes advertise adult only pool areas, this is not enforced and kids can be found in all pools, if that’s something important to you. -The casino area is a complete failure in my opinion. The Casino on the Vista appears to have been an afterthought. There is very little room to move around in this Casino, so much so that I saw at least two arguments between players that did not have enough room to get into a table area. Additionally, due to the poor design and limited space, Carnival put the Casino bar in the middle of the under-sized Casino area resulting in an overwhelmingly smoky atmosphere. (I noted earlier that I had to go to the infirmary for nasal issues which I highly attributed to the smoky conditions.) Speaking with many others that are Carnival Casino regulars, I heard the same resounding statement that they would not be taking this ship again due to this Casino. I should add that the Casino appears to be such an afterthought that to find a men’s restroom from the casino required going upstairs or a hike to the front of the ship on the Casino floor. My personal note for Carnival, I would love to see Carnival initiate a smoke free casino, with possibly a smoking area that is adjoining in a separate room or area that is far better ventilated. Unfortunately, with the Casino bar allowing smoking and being in the middle of the casino, you had many passengers that prefer to sit and smoke while dunking creating a very smoky casino area. -For food and dining, we were disappointed in the dining room itself. The atmosphere felt more like a Luby’s cafeteria rather than a luxurious dining hall as we would have expected. The food also was a bit less than expected. While we’ve always felt the food on the Carnival ships was ok, this one felt like they cut corners with the quality. We did have an opportunity to dine in the Italian restaurant, JiJis and the Sushi restaurant. All 3 were fanatics although they all require a premium for dinner services. Overall, as as Carnival has always strived to provide a great vacation for the common person without breaking the bank, I would have to say that the Vista does provide an opportunity for a good family vacation, but do expect some shortfalls with this particular Carnival ship. I personally would recommend the Carnival Breeze and/or Freedom. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Vista Cruise special notes: - pay for “faster to the fun” or get priority boarding if you hate lines - Try the Pig and Anchor BBQ or Taste Bar on 5 Midship for no-wait lunch after boarding, since they don’t appear on most deck ... Read More
Vista Cruise special notes: - pay for “faster to the fun” or get priority boarding if you hate lines - Try the Pig and Anchor BBQ or Taste Bar on 5 Midship for no-wait lunch after boarding, since they don’t appear on most deck maps - Don’t try to get in the aft Havana pool or hot tubs unless you have a Havana cabin (or it’s after 7 pm) - Gift cards from the spa are restricted - can’t use for thermal suite - Get tickets for Imax at a kiosk on deck 6 forward (there’s a senior discount for 55+!) - The Dive-in theatre (free) and IMAX (Fee) show new movies - very worthwhile. Free popcorn - Two of the speciality pay restaurants are FREE for lunch under different names: JiJi’s->Mongolian BBQ, while Cucina del Capitano->Pasta Bella (both are excellent!) - The taste bar is only open during boarding and on sea days but is worth a try - Aft cabins with the extended balcony are GREAT if you like sitting outside privately (be aware - the deck 9 aft cabins have an overhand that precludes most sunbathing) - SkyRide and Ropes require close-toed shoes - Ropes course is easier if you hold on to the safety harness as high up as possible - “Anytime dining” actually means “request table at the kiosk or via the Hub App, then wait from 5 to 90 minutes” - “Pancho’s Backyard” at Puerto Maya cruise terminal in Cozumel is a great place for a margarita and chips (and guacamole!) - Room power outlet includes usb charging ports - Dock pharmacy in Belize is less crowded than the one in Cozumel but prices seem comparable - You can make specialty restaurant reservations months in advance via the carnival website cruise manager - Pay-per-view movies in rooms are only $5 for new movies and lots of free older titles - You can bring your own food & drinks into the Imax theatre - SkyRide line moves very slowly; good to go at off times - Pre-paid value plan is a good deal for internet. Some streaming is supported—e.g., YouTube - Carnival hub app is buggy and unreliable it necessary 3/3/19 Sunday boarding We drove to Galveston this morning. It was a bit rainy but traffic was fine. Mardi Gras is in full swing so traffic was a little bad near the cruise terminal. Shawn dropped me off at the cruise terminal and went and parked at EZ cruise park then walk back. As soon as he got back we were able to board. Boarding was extremely simple and very fast since I’m a platinum member. After checking our passports and entry documents we were ushered right through to security then up and onto the ship. Unfortunately, cabins were not ready. Shawn found a hot tub working on the Havana deck. I met him and we went to the promenade where we grabbed a snack at the Pig and Anchor - great BBQ but it’s not listed on any of the maps - find it midship on Promenade (deck 5). There was no line at all – everyone was up on Lido on 10 in lines that were long. We went to the aft section of the Havana area and tried to get in the hot tub, but were told by a crewman that only Havana cabin guess could use that hot tub. We then went to the ocean view lounge and the taste bar midship near the elevators. It was lovely and there were no lines and there were a number of different interesting foods to try. Everything was very very tasty. At 1:30, we were able to get into our cabin number 9470 aft extended balcony. It is a lovely cabin, but I should note that because of an overhang from the Lido deck it will not be good for sunning or sunbathing. One of our bags was delivered early and the other an hour later. We partially unpacked. We realized we were seated for dinner in the midship restaurant (despite our cabin being as far aft as possible) so we need to try to change that. First, we made our way to the deck 3 aft restaurant, Horizons Dining Room for the mandatory safety briefing. Then we wandered thru Lido as the Sail Away party started. Went up and checked in at the spa since I purchased a week of Thalassotherapy there. Then we went to the Vista Atrium, deck 3 forward, to get a drink and await an Electric Violin Duo. We had a Sex on the Beach - yum! Listened to the Electric Violins with Polaris trio for a bit (very good!) then went up to Deck 11 to look around. The Skyride has appeared inactive all day. Went back to the cabin and watched a free movie. We’d requested a Steakhouse reservation online prior to the cruise but were told they were sold out. Once aboard, I was able to get a 9:30 reservation- late, but .... Went by Reflections dining at midship and the maitre de was very helpful in getting us changed to “my time” dining in the aft Horizons dining room. We got to the 555 Steakhouse early and were seated immediately. Wonderful service and excellent food! They offered complimentary house wine and we had the Chardonnay. We ordered: baked onion soup, stuffed mushrooms, shrimp cocktail, baked sole, filet mignon, wasabi mashed Yukon gold potatoes, and garlic rapini. They also gave us a wonderfully flakey and delicious roll with basil butter and some incredible little wagyu sliders, compliments of the chef. We said we were too full for 2 deserts and asked for a recommendation- our server replied that she’d bring us the Chocolate Sphere (hard to explain but cool and yummy) for us to share and a “to-go” cheesecake for later. So sweet! The Sphere even had “Happy Anniversary “ written in chocolate on its plate. They also gave us complimentary champagne for a postprandial toast. It was an incredible experience overall - try to get an earlier reservation as everything slows down as it gets late. Back to the cabin, tired and replete!! 3/4/19 Monday at sea Shawn up early (5 ish) to do laps on Promenade but a complete circuit was impeded by the Havana cabins. He still did 6 laps then came back and snoozed until breakfast time at 8:30. I figured out how to get my laptop on the paid WiFi - we chose the value package before the cruise. The trick is to put your laptop on airplane mode then access the WiFi and go to Carnivalhub.com and put in your folio number. Down to Horizons for sea-day brunch. Natalya from the Ukraine was our head waitress and was lovely. Back to the cabin to change into a swimsuit then I went to the Cloud 9 Spa to use the Thermal Suite while Shawn went to get tickets for the IMAX showing of How to Train Your Dragon. The Thalassotherapy pool and areas were wonderful. Changing rooms with lockers, towels, showers and a dry sauna were available. The main thermal area had the heated mineral jacuzzi, a steam room, aroma steam room, infrared sauna and dry sauna as well as heated zero-g lounges, all facing huge windows looking out at the passing ocean. I stayed for over an hour then got some orange flavored water and went to meet Shawn for the movie. You have to buy tickets ahead of time at a kiosk and there are no assigned seats. A senior discount (over 55) is nice! Popcorn, sodas and other traditional fare are available for purchase, and drinks from other parts of the ship can be brought in as well. Fun movie and it let out in time for us to go to Blue Iguana grill on Lido for a late lunch. I had a fajita beef taco bowl and Shawn had a grilled shrimp burrito - delicious and filling. We went back to our cabin for a brief siesta and found complimentary choc-covered strawberries (one of the perks of Platinum). We started watching a movie and when the hub app showed only a 5-10 minute wait for “My Time” dining, we requested a table (via the app) and went down to 3 Horizons. Where we waited and waited and waited. We finally got the notification that our table was available and were seated (about 30 minutes into the 5-10 minute wait). The braised kale tarts with Pork were a delicious appetizer. Back to our cabin to finish The Favourite then read and sleep. 3/5/18 Fat Tuesday at sea Shawn went for 7 laps then we went for an early bfast on Lido. I went to the spa while Shawn checked out the ropes course and sky ride. I arrived a little early but they checked me in. A woman offered me a shoulder massage then talked me into a bamboo massage at 4:30. I locked my purse and phone in the provided locker and entered the thermal suites. I started on the heated recliner and read for a bit then went in the mineral jacuzzi and on to the aromatherapy room which worked only briefly. I notified a spa attendant when I headed to the infrared room then the dry sauna. It was almost too hot, making the seats almost burning, but the huge windows were nice. I relaxed and dried out a bit then went to the relaxation room for orange flavored water. I headed back to the cabin. Shawn had gone and observed a huge line for the sky ride and a much shorter line for the ropes. We went to Pasta Bella for lunch. Since it sits below the sports deck and ball court, the banging from the ceiling is a bit annoying- the food is great, though! Choose one of 3 pasta then pick sauce and “add ins” plus Italian bread or Cesar salad. Liberal use of good olive oil made it rich and flavorful. I went to the shops to get a carryall for excursions (forgot to bring one) while Shawn went to the cabin. Louie our steward was working in the cabin so Shawn went up to 12. When I got back to the cabin, it’d been decorated for our anniversary with magnetic dangles from the ceiling, a bottle of champagne and flutes, plus a tumbler and a towel. There were also candies from My Time dining. We went back up to 12 aft (stairs required from 11 :-( so not great for us gimps). Shawn went on both the easy and hard ropes course, back to back, because there was no line. He says the trick is to grab your safety harness rope up near the wheel for balance!! The Skyride line was only a 30 minutes wait, so we got in line but realized I had on sandals (a no-no). We went back to our cabin after watching the Skyride and ropes for a while. At 4, Shawn walked me to the spa. They directed me to the relaxation room where I drank green tea and filled out paperwork. Sheila took me back and gave me a full body bamboo and hot stone massage for about 80 minutes. Very nice although they always try to upsell stuff. Met Shawn on 15 Serenity deck and looked around then headed back to our cabin. Dinner reservations at JiJi’s Asian restaurant got there early and were seated. Food is served family style so we picked 2 appetizers, 2 entrees, 2 sides and 2 desserts. A small “compliments of the chef” appetizer came out first. Wonderful and delicious food – definitely worth the extra charge! Back to our cabin to watch Crazy Rich Asians on pay per view. . 3/6/19 Ash Wednesday at Roatan Up early - 530 for Shawn to do 5 laps. Went to bfast on Lido at 6:30 - lots of folks. Back to cabin to sunscreen up. An announcement at 8 that debarking was allowed so headed to 0 forward. Easy getting off and found mtg spot for Tabyana Beach and Gumbalimba Park but the tour directions folks weren’t very clear and a bunch of us headed off with the wrong group. Finally, our guide, St. Christopher, gathered us and led to the bus. VERY cramped bus - larger folk barely fit down the aisle. A 35-minute ride to GumbaLimba Park. Beautiful day! Saw 2 woodpeckers near the huge fig tree. Saw iguanas and island rabbits (capybaras) before going thru the Insectarium and Coxen’s cave. Climbed lots of stairs then crossed the bamboo bridge (Puente Bambusa) to see the birds. Scarlet and green/Military macaws as well as green parrots, turkey vultures, toucan and peafowl. Onward to see the monkeys although one visited us at the birds. I was winded when we got to the monkey area so the trainer told me to sit on the swing. Macheco, the white-faced capuchin monkey almost immediately came to sit on me!! The monkeys were fun and friendly except for some infighting with a male harassing a momma and her baby. Mango monkey also sat on my head. We hiked back, said goodbye to Christopher and took the bus to Tabyana Beach. Had a drink then got into the beautiful azure water up to my neck - incredible beach!!! Had a Monkey LaLa (frozen Vodka, Baileys and coconut rum drink with chocolate swirl) while Shawn dipped his feet in the waters. Headed back to the boat for lunch. Went to Guys Burgers with no line, though by the time we left, the line was long. Back to the cabin to change and rest then I went to the spa. Very crowded so did the steam aromatherapy room until the pool was less busy then onto a heated lounge for reading and to get my ankle up. Met Shawn on 15 to watch the Carnival Magic depart. Decided to do an early dinner and movie so requested a table at 5:30 and were seated by 5:45 next to 2 elderly sisters. Nice dinner - Shawn had the “local flavor” Pescado Asado with a wonderful broccoli soup (which we didn’t know was soup until it arrived at the table). I had the tenderloin with an excellent polenta. Back to the cabin to watch Arthur- Legend of the Sword. Bed early. 3/7/19 Thursday in Belize Same as yesterday for laps and bfast then down to the Liquid Lounge to await our excursion: Wildlife Adventure boat and zoo. BTW the Carnival Hub App has a bad tendency of locking up. Got told to go down for our Tender to shore. Two women argued about opening a window on the tender. One of them complained or yakked constantly and she ended up on our tour with her whiny kids. We were greeted and led by our guide, Anne, to a restroom and then our boat for the river tour. The boat was partially covered and had hard seats. We went to the manatee area at the mouth of the river then up river. We saw: 5 Bats, several Manatee, iguanas in trees, several Howler monkeys, 2 Morelet crocodiles, parrots, egrets, herons and two rare Jabiru storks w/nest. Stopped at The Iguana Spot for lunch: rice, beans, stewed chicken and a local Belikin beer for Shawn. On a bus for a 35-minute ride to Belize Zoo. Anne led us thru the maze-like zoo. Saw: King Vultures, black vulture, spectacled owl, cougar, margay, ocelot, howler and spider monkeys, jaguarundi, harpy eagle, tayra (bush dog), wild turkeys, jabiru storks, a keel-billed toucan, tapir, ornate hawks, alligators and crocodiles, whitetail deer, tarantula, and boas. Back on the bus for about a 50 minute ride back to Belize city. Got to the port, and the line to get on the boat was already very very long. We shopped a little then had a daiquiri before getting in line. A security guard came and saw my cane and walked us up to the front of the line after we had been in line about 15 minutes. We got on a tender and were back at the ship by about 415. We went up to 10 and crossed over and had an ice cream cone each then came to our cabin to rest and shower. Found out it was “elegant night” so decided to eat on Lido instead of the dining room - the Hakka noodles were great! Then we found a couch on deck 11 where we watched Antman and the Wasp at the Dive-In Movie. Also, the ship told everyone to set clocks ahead one hour for Cozumel and daylight savings time. Enjoyed the film although we sat too close to the starboard smoking area. Changed my watch and ended up going to bed after 11:30 PM. 3/8/19 Friday in Cozumel It was already light at 6 AM because of the time change and Shawn got up to run laps or rather walk them. Searched the cabin but could not find the laundry bag so I had to call Louie our Steward. Went to breakfast on Lido and they announced gangways were open and last boarding extended to 4 pm because we were a little late getting into port. Filled the laundry bag for Louie and read on the balcony until 10. Went ashore and shopped a bit before going to Pancho’s Backyard restaurant at Puerta Maya dock. Shared a marg and had chips, guacamole and a quesilla con salsa verde. Listened to local musicians then strolled back to the ship. Saw parrotfish, trumpet fish and sergeant majors in the lovely Caribbean blue waters along the dock. Stopped by the cabin to try on purchases and rest before heading to Mongolian Wok for lunch. Went up to try to ride the sky ride but they were doing maintenance and weren’t sure if they’d open today. Shawn did the ropes course (both sides) then we went to the Promenade to watch people returning from Cozumel and to laugh at drunks. The last stragglers were 48 minutes late. We went over to Red Frog for pub grub ($3.33 per ordered item): coconut shrimp, rhoti and sliders. After eating, Shawn went to the cabin while I bought rum cakes and got our anniversary pictures of the ship. Back in the cabin, our clean laundry was delivered then we watched First Man. To bed about 10. 3/9/19 Saturday at sea Up at 6 am for Shawn to walk laps (35 total this trip) and me to purchase pics. Lazed about until 8 then down to Horizons in hopes of sea day brunch opening early. They opened at 8:17 and we got a separate table. I ordered a croissant and we got a basket of 4 egg-washed butter croissants-delicious! I had eggs Benedict and a parfait. Shawn had the parfait and breakfast pasta - unfortunately, it was spaghetti in a cream sauce rather than the red sauce he wanted. The Sky Ride was scheduled to open at 9 so we hurried there after breakfast to find only a short line. I unknowingly got into the car on the inside track which turned out to have more steepness but it was great fun!! Back to the cabin to change shoes (the ride requires closed-toe shoes) and a little digestion time then we put on swimsuits and headed to the spa. Unfortunately, the $50 gift card we received was only for “spa services” and didn’t include the thermal suite so we paid $45 for Shawn to join me. Went into the jacuzzi then the steam-aromatherapy room then onto the heated lounges - Shawn fell asleep. I went for infrared and dry sauna then we cooled off in the relaxation room. Back to the cabin to change and rest and read. Down to the Ocean Plaza Taste Bar to try some incredible dishes while listening to Caribbean Sounds with Mikhail on steel drums. Back to the room to read before going to listen to violins and get our free drink. The funnel of art/images in the Vista Libby 3 forward was composing and decomposing impressionist artworks as we listened to the trio and shared a Sex on the Beach. Went to Bonsai Sushi for dinner: 2 miso soups, wagyu kakuni (beef appetizer), spicy tuna roll and Katsu chicken - all superb!! Picked up the photo I bought then went to our cabin. Saw Louie and tipped him $50 for his amazing service. Started packing. To bed early but I had trouble getting to sleep. 3/10/19 Sunday debarkation Alarm at 5:30. Shawn did 2 laps while I finished packing. Went to bfast on Lido them back to cabin for last check and luggage. Went to 3 midship Reflections for Priority debarkation - supposed to be there by 7:45 but already a line. They had us line luggage up to ensure everyone got off the ship in the order they arrived in the priority area. Left the restaurant at about 7:25 and finished customs at 8:03. (Customs Inspector on line 5 was SSLLLOOOOWWWWW) Shawn left me to go get car. We drove away by 8:30 am!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
This was our 14th cruise on Carnival. Haven't sailed on one their ships in over 3 years. This was our 41st cruise. The reason we picked this cruise was we got a great casino rate. Galveston is only a 4 hour drive from home. ... Read More
This was our 14th cruise on Carnival. Haven't sailed on one their ships in over 3 years. This was our 41st cruise. The reason we picked this cruise was we got a great casino rate. Galveston is only a 4 hour drive from home. First impression of the Vista was not that great. Being Platinum got us right on at 11:30. Guy's Burgers hit the spot. Ate there several more times while on board. The outdoor BarBQ by Guy's on sea days was also very good. The MDR's food was ok but only once was our food really hot. The Lido Deck food was luke warm at best. If you like your desserts you need to be on the Lido at lunch. The cakes we're the best but they ran out fast and the line was 40-50 people deep. Staff was good about clearing tables and being friendly. The show's in the Liquid Lounge we're ok. The setup in the lounge was strange . They use movable chairs in the lower section to accommodate the many stages they use during shows. Get there early if you want a good seat. The casino is the worst for smoke the smoke went out into the public areas. We would go up to deck 5 an crossover rather than go thru the casino. Matt the cruise director and his ass't Amanda we're some of the best. A must go to is the salute to the veterans. You don't have to be a veteran to be moved by this event. I'm a retired USAF MSgt and a Viet Nam veteran. This event brought many to tears. Thanks Matt for this being the host and making this my favorite part of the cruise. Our cabin was an inside on deck 8 aft. The only noise we heard we're people slamming their doors and talking loud out in hall. Debarcation went very well. We had priority self debarcation so we we're in our car driving home by 8AM. The ship is lackluster. Hard to find your way around. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
Crew is the least friendly and coldest we've ever encountered on Carnival. The ship is full of gimmicks (for extra $); the "accessible" balcony cabin, was impossible to "navigate"; Guest Services was curt and ... Read More
Crew is the least friendly and coldest we've ever encountered on Carnival. The ship is full of gimmicks (for extra $); the "accessible" balcony cabin, was impossible to "navigate"; Guest Services was curt and unaccommodating when we requested a different cabin, even-though we said we'd take an inside one without requiring any fare adjustment or credit. The Spa "therapists" were all smiles and no substance, it did not feel sincere at all. The dinner menus were uninspired and repetitive, and the Reflections restaurant is does not feel inviting or comfortable. Too many large tables and not enough servers. The "FUNSquad" was not very fun at all, they mostly just go through the motions for trivia, name the song, and other games and activities. Room Service delivered our breakfast ALWAYS outside the requested 30-minute window, up to 30 minutes earlier and then 45 minutes late on the last day. A few times we tried to order coffee in the afternoon (there was no self-service Decaf available anywhere on the ship...), and that would take from 45-minutes up to TWO hours to have it delivered. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We have sailed 10+times with Carnival. Through the years the attention to detail and the desire to make you feel special has gotten overlooked. Wait staff no where near as good, room stewards not as attentive, food not as good or ... Read More
We have sailed 10+times with Carnival. Through the years the attention to detail and the desire to make you feel special has gotten overlooked. Wait staff no where near as good, room stewards not as attentive, food not as good or repetitive. This particular shop is VERY difficult to navigate. My wife and I searched for an hour to find the movie theater which is an extra cost. Too many areas are extra. We are going to try a competitor to see the difference. Carnival needs to get back to focusing on the customer and not the bottom line. They tend to be getting more focused on making money than bringing the luxury and pampering to the consumer as they did in the beginning. I realize we have come to expect certain things but the fall off in quality is obvious. I went to a comedy show and remembered almost every line from the same comedian 2 years earlier. SAD Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We were originally booked on Carnival Freedom, but one day I found an email in my inbox telling me that Freedom was going to be dry docked during our vacation (WHAT?!?) and we needed to rebook. Through much discussion, and more than one ... Read More
We were originally booked on Carnival Freedom, but one day I found an email in my inbox telling me that Freedom was going to be dry docked during our vacation (WHAT?!?) and we needed to rebook. Through much discussion, and more than one reservation specialist, we were able to book on Vista. I am so glad we did!! I try not to travel on Carnival. Any other cruise line is nicer, classier, newer/cleaner, etc. The only reason I ever cruise with Carnival is because I live in Texas and it's either Carnival or Royal Caribbean, with Carnival having more ships. My experience with Carnival was on an older ship that was decorated like the inside of an old casino--very garish and ugly! I never saw my cabin steward and the crew were not friendly. There was very little communication. I swore I'd never do it again. When my daughter asked me to go again, I said yes...knowing that it was going to be sub-par. BUT WAIT!! The Vista is beautiful--it's only 3 yrs old, so it's decor is still on trend with streamlined furnishings and calming color schemes. It's a large ship with almost 4000 passengers, but I never felt like it. There were plenty of lounge chairs, both in the sun and in the shade. Of course, the main pool area filled up on sea days, but there are 3 decks surrounding the pool, so lots of seating. There is also an aft pool, and of course, the private Havana pool. Those other pools take some of the load off of the main pool. There are tables and umbrellas on the promenade deck. Many people took books out there and spent the afternoon reading and napping. Fantastic! I can't speak to the entertainment--getting dressed, rushing to, then crowding into a theater is not how I want to spend my vacation. I didn't see any shows, or comedians, or even go to the IMAX. From what I heard, they were all wonderful. There are many food choices on Vista! I never ate in the main dining room (for the reasons I listed about entertainment above), but I didn't need to. There is the buffet, hamburgers, pizza (even can have it delivered to your cabin!), fish and chips, BBQ, sushi...specialty restaurants. Everything I tried was enjoyable. It's nice to have choices!! The crew is amazing! Cruise director Matt is a humorous fellow. He kept everyone laughing and having fun. Our cabin steward, Rodrigo, knew our names by the first morning and would greet us every time we saw him...which was often. I never had to ask a thing of him; he was perfect. Any crew member we encountered smiled and greeted us. The embarkation process was one of the best I've ever had! From the time we arrived at the port terminal to the time we got onboard was only 45 minutes!! The safety drill went quickly too. Excursions? Very orderly. As well as debarkation process. I was very impressed with my cruise on Carnival Vista. So much so, I am planning another one! I think the people who rate this ship low are people that would complain about any ship. No trip is perfect. We are humans, all. I came back rested and happy with my vacation. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We picked this cruise because we wanted to go out of Galveston and the timing was right. We have never been on a cruise so had few expectations. Now about our experience: Although I am sure this is mentioned in all reviews, Matt, the ... Read More
We picked this cruise because we wanted to go out of Galveston and the timing was right. We have never been on a cruise so had few expectations. Now about our experience: Although I am sure this is mentioned in all reviews, Matt, the Cruise Director is one of a kind. His wit and kindness to everyone he meets is remarkable. It was as though he had 4,000 close friends that week. He did a very touching program honoring vets. I could see the look in the eyes of the vets and could tell how very much they appreciated his kind remarks. At one point or another, there were not many dry eyes in the room. I have never seen anyone, in any profession, embrace their job with the joy and professionalism that Matt does whenever he is among all his guests. There were so many activities offered everyday that we only participated in about 1% and we stayed really busy the entire week. If there was a lacking area, I could only find one. The buffet was not very good in either of our opinions. It did not seem to include American tastes for lunch and evening meals. This is not to say that we went hungry because there were many other options. All the kiosks on floor 10 around the pool were exceptional. I will miss Guy's Burgers the most. The dining room and Steak House were excellent. I just like a buffet and was a little disappointed that we were not able to take advantage of it. All in all, the sea days as well as the port days were so fun and entertaining. We saw some great comedy shows, were challenged with trivia, attended art shows, and the dive-in movies were a great time. This is just to mention a few activities we enjoyed on board. This was our first cruise ever but it will not be the last. Thank you for reading. Read Less
Carnival Vista Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 3.5 0.0
Entertainment 5.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 5.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 3.5 0.0
Enrichment 1.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0

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