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Hey cruisers, I’m Sheri with CruiseTipsTV. We decided it’s about time to share a few Carnival tips and tricks. These are great for first time cruisers. Even if this isn’t your first time on a cruise, these tips and tricks may help. Every Carnival cruise ship has its own unique personality, but in our experience there is one thing they all have in common – they are truly fun ships.
We’ll start with one of my favorite things about Carnival Cruises- Waterslides!
Twenty-one of Carnival’s ships ships feature at least one waterslide, and 10 have some iteration of the WaterWorks aqua park. Carnival led the cruise industry with their wet and wild fun, and we’re stoked that they did! Don’t go thinking these are just for kids. But yeah, the kids love ‘em.
Have you ever had a poolside burger? Maybe not so great? Not on Carnival my friend. Say goodbye to stale buns … in our opinion, Carnival has the best Burgers at sea, and … they’re FREE. Carnival teamed up with Guy Fieri, and answered the call of seafaring burger connoisseurs with Guy Fieri burger joints on many of their ships. Cruisers RAVE about these burgers. Trust us, they are tasty. Their toppings bar alone is enough to make your mouth water, with crispy bacon, sautéed mushrooms, grilled onions and hot peppers. Oh yes, that’s my secret burger recipe. And here’s a tip, you can customize your order before you even get to the toppings bar. 2 patties? No problem! Extra cheese? Bring it on!
And while we’re on the topic of food, if you’re sailing on a ship with the BlueIguana Cantina, they are also open for breakfast. Many cruisers don’t know they can skip the lines at the buffet for a delectable breakfast burrito or Huevos Rancheros, right on the pool deck.
Here’s another culinary tip. Most Carnival cruise ships give their guests a free bottle of wine if you dine in their steakhouse on the first night of the cruise. THAT’s a good way to kick off your vacation!
Okay, this ones gonna cost you a little scratch, but it’s worth it for us. If you want VIP treatment without logging the loyalty time, no problem. Carnival lets you pay to cruise like a VIP. That’s essentially what their “Faster to the Fun” program does. It gets you priority embarkation and disembarkation, priority tendering, priority guest services, priority dining reservations and more. Prices for this range from about $50-80, and it’s worth every penny … to us anyway.
Carnival is the only cruise line we know to offer a special menu on sea days that is served during both the breakfast and lunch hours. It’s called SeaDay Brunch. What’s so cool about it? You can have your custom bloody mary and steak and eggs at the crack of dawn, or after you sleep in. So yah, brunch. Seriously, the extended brunch hours, are the bomb, and with menu items like cereal crusted French toast, huevos rancheros, filet mignon and eggs you won’t want to miss it. And unlike our last tip, it’s free. Yay free!
Want to make your friends at home jealous? Check out Carnival’s “behind the fun” tour. It’s totally cool and is a GREAT deal compared to other cruise lines. Usually scheduled for the last sea day of a cruise, the tour takes you to places on the ship other passengers never see. You can expect to see everything from the backstage area at the show lounge, to the galley, engine room, bridge, crew areas, and even the ship’s laundry facilities. Oh, and you MAY get to meet the captain and other VIP ship staff too. Trust us, this is a great experience. But, you may not get to take your camera on the tour, so bummer there, but either way you’ll have some great insider details to share.
Here’s a tip that totally blows me away. Carnival has something called a Great Vacation Guarantee. Guests can change their mind, for any reason, within 24 hours of leaving the port of embarkation if they aren’t satisfied with their cruise experience. Not only will guest services arrange to fly you home, but they will refund you 110% of your cruise fare and give you a future onboard credit. There’s some fine print on this guarantee, of course, but we think it’s good to know that Carnival stands behind their product.
Our last tip is one of my favorites. When you think of a spa cabin, you may not think “hmm, that sounds like a good financial decision”, but Spa cabins can often be a wise decision for spa-goers. Here’s why, Carnival’s Cloud 9 Spa balcony cabins include access to the therapy pool, steam room and sauna, as part of the cabin price.