Has Anybody Taken a Carnival Cruise?

We are going on a cruise for our HM -7 day cruise to Mexico- on the Carnival ship "Splendor." Has anybody taken a Carnival cruise before? This is our first cruise.


We were looking at excursions last night, and I know things are always more expensive on vacation but I almost can't wrap my mind around it. $269 for a couples massage -50 minutes- when I can get a couples massage here for a full hour for $100 or less?!?!


I don't want to be the downer, but I just don't want to spend too much extra on stuff like that!


My question is, if you've taken a cruise before...are there enough things to do without purchasing all the "extras?" Like when we dock at Cabo, do we just get off and go to a beach? I know it's not safe to just wander by ourselves. I have no idea what to expect!! Can anybody tell me to your experiences? TIA!!

Posted on August 15, 2012 at 12:15 pm
Uhlease
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Uhlease

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(11) Comments

aggiebride
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02/04/2012
aggiebride

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aggiebride

From my experience, there are plenty of free and cheaper things to do aboard a carnival cruise ship! Those kind if amenities seem to be the bank breaker on the ship. I loved the cruises we went on, both to the carribean with carnival. Have fun!
Posted on August 15, 2012 at 1:43 pm
daluvelynic
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09/02/2012
daluvelynic

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daluvelynic

Good question I was also wondering the same thing!

Posted on August 15, 2012 at 2:43 pm
DreamingOfYou
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12/31/2011
DreamingOfYou

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DreamingOfYou

I haven't been on Carnival though we took a cruise last year with Royal Caribbean.  Do not, I repeat do not, book your excursions with your cruise line.  They charge twice as much.  I searched online and found the same ones for half the price and we were able to do so much more.  Just search for "Things to do in _______" and hundreds of sites will appear.  It may take longer though you will save in the long run.  

Posted on August 15, 2012 at 2:51 pm
Uhlease
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09/02/2012
Uhlease

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Uhlease

Thanks Wendy, I was also thinking the same thing. I know FI will not go for it because he'd rather be "safe than sorry" but I agree with you. We'll see what we can do, I'll talk to him tonight :)

Posted on August 15, 2012 at 2:53 pm
beccabride
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10/10/2010
beccabride

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beccabride

I went on a Carnival Cruise a few years ago and did not book any extra excursions because there was so much to do between the ports of call and the entertainment on the ship.  I went for 4 days with a few friends and had the time of my life  : )

Posted on August 15, 2012 at 3:09 pm
DreamingOfYou
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DreamingOfYou

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If it makes him feel better, tell him we had no problems.  All of our excursions were amazing and the best part of our trip.  You just have to be careful and check their reviews.  It also helped that all of the ones we booked offered money back guarantees plus we only paid half before and the rest when we got there.  Gave us more time to save the money.

Posted on August 15, 2012 at 3:57 pm
Alyxzimms
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I've been on 2 cruises, both out of Galveston, TX, which I think was Carnival, maybe Royal Carribean (?). Anyway, had a great time on both.

The first one I went with a big group and only did 1 excursion to some ruins - was pretty cool. the rest of the trip we got off the boat and went to town, or restaurant, etc. In the evenings on the boat they had plays or some sort of show to see (free) and that was fun. I wasn't into gambling, but I think you could do that too. We also hung out in the numerous pools and hot tubs for utter relaxation! I also enjoyed dressing up for dinner in the evening and had fun with the other 6 people that we ate with every night.

The 2nd trip (also to Mexico) was a ball too - although - don't go in August (WHAT were we THINKING??!! HOT HOT HOT). We did almost ALL of the excursions - well maybe 3 of them anyway. We went to a "beach party" one day which was fun, but not sure about the value for the extra money we spent on that one. Another day we went on ATVs riding all over the beaches - that was a blast! My husband raced with the "fast group" and I went my own speed with the slower group -- we both had a ball! We also went to the Chinchinitza (sp?) ruins that was very awesome -- although extremely HOT!

I did one massage or something that I could find that was the least expensive... it was ok, but I could get it for half the price at home (as you mentioned)... I think if you want to relax, soak up the rays by the pool, gamble, enjoy the evening movies/shows, and walk/sight see around the port towns then you'll enjoy it. I liked the first couple of days of that and then I was looking for something more to do...

I would recommend picking at least one of the excursions (and sign up before you board or they are MORE expensive) because it is a lot of fun and you'll have the memory "from your HM".

I think it just matters on what you want to do - especially since it is your HM... if you want to be pampered - then save what you have to to enjoy it.
Posted on August 16, 2012 at 1:57 am
littlebit07
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07/14/2012
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littlebit07

We took a Carnival cruise! It was fun:) We splurged on one excursion...we went horseback riding through the rainforest in Puerto Rico, which was a bit expensive (I think it was around $100 each), but totally worth it. It was about a four hour adventure. Plus, our bus driver was amazing and took on on an extra little tour of the city.


I also got a massage one day. On the acutual cruise, they offer specials on massages advertised every day in your "Fun Times" paper, so I would wait to book that. I think I paid $99 for 50 minutes. They did my feet, back, and I got a facial. Not too terrible.


But overall, there is a lot going on on the ship (pool, dinner, after dinner shows, a casino, comedy club, etc.) and you can explore with in walking distance at each port, too (shopping at the markets, hanging out on the beach).  


Hope that helps! Have fun on your cruise!

Posted on August 16, 2012 at 2:17 am
jmbuss9
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07/22/2012
jmbuss9

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I've never taken any kind of cruise, and probably never will! I am deadly afraid!!!

Posted on August 16, 2012 at 2:32 am
Uhlease
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09/02/2012
Uhlease

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Uhlease

Thanks everybody! I searched around last night! And I'm currently making a bio page so I remember all the tips I found about cruising. There's a ton of youtube videos on how to save money on cruises-what's worth it and whats not, etc. FI understands so we only booked one excursion and that's because his birthday wil be during our honeymoon so we are going to do a sunset cruise (it has open bar so $60 each is fine. lol) It was my bday gift to him! Other than that, there are things to do at each port for way cheaper. Thanks again :)


 

Posted on August 16, 2012 at 3:27 am
kplusd
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09/08/2012
kplusd

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kplusd

iv never used carnival, but was on royal carribbean, and there is SOO much to do!! multiple pools, clubs, bars, shops on board, resturaunts on board, there was always organized events on board too. one of the places we docked was in haiti, which is by NO means a safe area, but we docked at the touresty part, so it was much safer! out of the 4 places we stopped at, i only got off at 2 because there was so much to do on board! its seriously a floating town! you will deffinatly not have an issue with keeping busy. and i know massages are ridiculoussss on board!! i got a mini massage, it was 30 minutes, and that was close to $100, but it was probably once in a life time!

Posted on August 16, 2012 at 4:40 am

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