Carnival Cruise / discrimination / rude treatment
I am very upset with the utter disrespect and discriminatory treatment my group received from Carnival Cruises. We had so many issues on this trip it’s shocking. As there are so many issues I will list them by location and then by day.
Monday night several members of our group were in the Rex Lounge. There was an incident that began with the DJ. When Jessica Bowles approached the DJ booth the security guard allowed her to enter the DJ booth to request a song. When she approached him to request “Birthday Sex” he told her “back up ###!” I cannot imagine what could possible happen that would cause this type of response. The group was sarcastically told that it was the end of his contract, which apparently meant he didn’t care about repercussions. Regardless of the length of his “contract” he is still a representative of Carnival.
The next issue that even was also in the Rex Lounge, Jessica was dancing proactively in the adult club and while dancing became overheated and removed her upper shirt revealing a sports top underneath. This prompted security, Franklin A, to demand they leave the club due to this incident. I do want to call attention to other similar incidents we videotaped in the Rex Lounge. There were some homosexual men that removed their shirts revealing only their bare chests and proceeded to lick one another’s chests. This same evening there were women scantily clad with very revealing tops that resembled bandeau bras.
On Tuesday evening there was a bachelorette party in the Rex Lounge between 12-2 am who were performing pole dances and erotically simulating sex acts on one another on the dance floor in front of the DJ. Shortly thereafter there was a man sitting along the wall across from the DJ bar who removed his shirt and began giving a lap dance to another male. After this incident a member of our party was sitting at the bar and another member climbed on to the stool she was on and was hugging her from behind. Interestingly enough they are sisters. Immediately the security approached our group and advised that Jessica would need to leave the bar immediately because by climbing on to the stool she was “endangering the safely of the other travelers.” I can certainly agree this was not safe behavior but I do not feel it was handled appropriately. In a normal bar setting this type of display would result in the bar staff warning the culprit. However in this instance Franklin removed her from the bar. I find it disturbing that the ethnic individuals in my party seemed to be discriminated against. I don’t know if this is race related because the bachlorette group were all comprised of Caucasian female and the males that were performing oral acts on one another were also of Caucasian descent. Yet another example was during the Carnival sponsored hairy chest contest when a contestant, at the direction of the Carnival staff, told to parade down the stairs and upon performing he nearly fell from the middle of the stairs. Not only did our group capture this on film Carnival has included this in the DVD from the sailing.
On Tuesday I wanted to request a song, but felt very worried about the complaints and reports I had received about the DJ. I gently approached security and asked if the DJ took requests, he smiled and said yes. I asked where to go and he told me to enter the DJ booth. I stepped about 2 feet into the DJ booth and politely said “excuse me, may I request a song.” At this time the DJ glanced to his side at me with nothing but distain and turned back around. He was incredibly rude and didn’t have enough respect to nod or give me any kind of acknowledgement. After he played the wrong song I returned to the booth and again tried to have a song played. He was visible angry for some reason. Certainly employees have bad days but Carnival is advertised as the fun ship and is marketed as a vacation getaway. All of the internal issues within Carnival should be invisible to guests.
On Thursday my group was to have a happy hour. I gathered my group of 37 cruises and one member entered the Rex Lounge and asked where to go. My group member was told that the staff member didn’t know what he was talking about. A moment later I received the report from my group member and went into the Rex Lounge personally. The bar staff member yelled at me stating, “I don’t anything about your group, that is Linda’s party, they are old ladies.” I was furious and left the lounge to retrieve the letter from Carnival placed under my door the day before. Upon returning I spoke with Lancelot, he saw that my group was on the list and Emil was just being lazy. I demanded to speak with Clarke the contacted listed on my paperwork. Prior to Clarke arriving the F & B Manager came. I spent additionally time retelling the story. I was assured my group would get their full hour as we agreed to with Carnival. I was trying to enjoy our get together but found myself running around calming everyone down over yet another issue and rehashing the issues with the various members of the management staff. The F & B manager assured me my group would get a full hour, however our time was cut short due to the issues. Yet again I had 37 upset travelers.
The staff working with the Paris Restaurant all seemed to be unhappy; none smiled or acknowledged the cruisers. I saw numerous travelers trying to get some attention from the staff for ketchup, mustard, or assistance. I personally was in the buffet line on Mexican night at 11 pm and there was a female employee preparing the tacos who was involved in a very intense conversation with another staff member regarding how upset she was that another employee was not back yet to help her and apparently she was supposed to have a break. The traveler in front of me stood there for several minutes waiting for her attention. This held up the entire line. Also waiting for her conversation to finish I attempted to get serving of the taco meat for my plate and I was immediately reprimanded.
Destiny Dinning Room:
I arranged for my group to have a bottle of red wine during the cruise. On the first night there were bottles of wine on the 4 tables assigned to my group in the Destiny. As members started being seated some bottles were opened. As the wait staff was opening the bottles we were asked to sign a document acknowledging receipt. During the dinner bottles were taken from some tables and given to other tables I believe because not all members of attending the dinner. At the end of dinner I was approached by the headwaiter advising he was missing one signature and he was unable to locate the 1 bottle of wine. He approached me and other members of our group many times. So much we felt uncomfortable and just signed the slip. Due to the issues on Monday night 33 travelers in the group did not attend dinner in the dining room two nights. On Thursday night I returned to the Destiny for another try and I was again approached about the bottle of wine because one couple did not get their bottle. I was so frustrated, irritated, and embarrassed that he would continue to draw attention to this issue I finally just told him to give them a new bottle of wine and I would pay. I believe that if there was a bottle of the wine missing it was the fault of the wait staff for failing to get the signatures or paying attention while opening the wine. The entire group complained about the headwaiter but wanted to make note of the other waiter, although we cannot remember his name we do remember he is from St. Vincent. The maitre de and this gentleman from St. Vincent was the only redeeming quality of the dining room.
Pool Side Bar / Bar Staff
The bartenders at the poolside bar and the America bar were clearly bitter and uninterested in refilling sodas or performing any form of customers that did not yield a tip. We were all educated on the “slave like” wages they were paid and how dependent the wait staff was on the tips. These are terms and opinions that were articulated to several of use. There was many times the poolside bartender (an older gentleman on the smoking side with glasses) that members actually had to wave him down and plead for his attention. Jennifer Milligan was unable to receive any assistance on Monday that she finally gave up and went to her room to retrieve soda. This same evening Stephanie Henry, Linda McLain, Donna Gates, and myself had to stand up and wave our arms around to get his attention. I would understand if he was helping another customer or performing any of his job duties but flirting with a few drunk bachlorettes should be done on his break or personal time, or if anything have a helper at the bar.
Each member of my group ascribes the continual agonizing, annoying, badgering from the wait staff to buy the drink of the day as harassment. It became so bad nobody wanted to be near the pool and we opening joked that a restraining order may be necessary. I am also very concerned with the alcohol beverages that were served to a 16 year old.
Lastly, I believe her name is Melanie who conducted the section E Muster’s drill, the game show on Monday night, helped with Bingo, and introduced the comedian made it a point to tell us at each opportunity that it was the end of her contract. I can certainly understand being eager to return home but the emphasis that was placed on her leaving certainly made it abundantly clear the ship was not the fun place we were sold on. This behavior does not seem to be appropriate and certainly got travelers to talk and discuss the unprofessional staff.
I want to draw attention to the fact that each member of my party became so resentful of Carnival all gratuities were removed from each traveler. Many had planned on making various purchases in the duty free stores but opted to forgo the savings because they were so bitter about the ongoing disrespect they received from Carnival staff. You will see that each member of the group also took significant time to fill out the comment cards in great detail. I would also offer you the photos and video we began taking of the issues. We were all so frustrated that we began recording some of the issues that we saw as evidence.
My group ranges from 35-53 individuals and we book a group cruise once a year. In the past we have always traveled with Royal Caribbean and had no complaints. We have all raved about being treated like royalty on the Monarch of the Seas and the Pride. However, on the Paradise we feel like we were treated like trash. We selected Carnival this year due to its reputation and price. We were all very upset with how poorly we were treated. I would request that each member of the group is personally contacted and receive an apology.
I look forward to your attention to this matter.
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