cruises

Carnival Victory Cruise Review

A good option for short, inexpensive cruises, but those who want Carnival's latest upgrades might wait until promised renovations are in place.

February 27, 2013
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Cabin Overview

On Carnival Victory, cabins fall into four main types. Cheapest are Interior cabins, which represent more than a third of the accommodations on the ship and average 185 square feet. Some Interiors are offered with two twin bunk beds; a few Interiors actually come with a porthole view. There are 19 cabins sold as Interior with Picture Window (Obstructed View)—accommodations found above and below the bridge. The obstruction is a public deck (not heavily used) and we look forward to trying these on a future Carnival cruise—they’re usually slightly cheaper than a standard Ocean View cabin.

Ocean View cabins (what we stayed in) measure a generous 220 square feet, with Balcony cabins coming in at 185 square feet, plus the balcony space (ranging from 35 to 75 square feet). There are also three categories of suites.

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Our Cabin: Ocean View

We measured our cabin at about 220 square feet, providing good elbow room for two sharing. While we might have felt differently if the sofa bed were opened for a third or fourth passenger (and storage space would have been tight), otherwise the cabin size seemed generous compared to standard accommodations on other cruise lines. The bed was comfortable and we slept well.

There were some negatives, starting with sound leak from the hallway and rooms on either side. Fortunately our immediate neighbors were quiet (we could still hear their TVs), but the same could not be said for someone working in the galley above at 4:30 a.m, one morning. A few times noise from the hallway awakened us after midnight. Cabin lighting was an all-or-nothing kind of arrangement that was not conducive to reading in bed and the TV in our cabin was an old-school Panasonic. Décor—the little there was—was outdated. Worse was a series of disconcerting purplish splotches in the carpet; our cabin steward said the stains were caused by excess glue used when the carpet was first laid.

Carnival’s standard bedding is surprisingly plush and inviting, and our bed on Victory—two eight-inch-thick twins joined with a mattress pad—was no exception, wrapped in a soft duvet stuffed with hypoallergenic down. There was a pair of little dressers on either side of the bed—too small to be of much use for anything more than eyeglasses and a book. There was a pair of reading lights above the pillows that were individually controlled. For light-sensitive sleepers, note that the curtains did not block out all of the light; a fair amount of sunlight leaked around the edges. The TV was not big, but it wasn’t far from the pillows, either.

Though colored a dingy pink—a color we think was outlawed in the 1970s—our bathroom was functional, with a decently sized shower, 37 inches wide, and 30.5 inches at its deepest, with a thin shower curtain. The shampoo provided in a wall dispenser was thin and useless, but fortunately Carnival’s goodie bag of product samples included some Garnier Fructis shampoo and conditioner to try. This lasted a couple days and our cabin steward brought more on request. Also stocked in our little amenity bowl were small tubes of Gold Bond moisturizing cream and Crest toothpaste. There was a cabinet to stash our travel kits and a wall-mounted hair dryer and bottle opener.

The main lighting system included two recessed lights at the doorway plus an overhead light panel that ran to (and above) the cabin window; all these lights were controlled by a single switch,. While this lighting proved ample, three bedside lights (two on either side of bed and one at the end of the couch) were barely sufficient for reading in bed. There was also a pair of fixtures on the mirror facing the bed with a separate switch.

Opposite the bathroom door were three closets side-by-side; each was 23 inches wide and was floor-to-ceiling in height. One had a safe (too small for most laptops) and shelves for storing clothes; the second had rods but not enough hangers while the third had a pair of bathrobes and three more hangers. There was space under the beds we used to store empty luggage. Two life vests were lodged in a cabinet next to the window. Above it was a 21-inch old-school Panasonic TV. In addition to a few non-ship channels there were two complimentary movies daily—one started every hour.

Other features included an 80-inch sofa with a pair of frayed pool towels sitting atop. There was a small table that could be used for dining, though tricky for two (the height was adjustable). Our cabin did not have a fridge or minibar, there was only a 1-liter bottle of Crystal Geyser water (for sale). Carnival’s website says our cabin had “individual climate control,” but if so, we couldn’t find air conditioning controls (though for us the temperature was comfortable throughout the cruise).

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Other Cabins

We did not stay in the rest of these cabins, but we have summaries here provided by Carnival Cruise Lines. Note that any photos on this page may be provided directly by the cruise line and not our reviewer.


Interior

A comfortable stateroom retreat, where some rooms also feature pull-down beds – ideal for families. Stateroom amenities:
Television
Soft, comfortable, and cozy linens
Hairdryer/Bathrobes
24-hour stateroom service
Ample closet and drawer space

Balcony

Relax and admire the passing scenery from your stateroom’s private balcony.
 Stateroom amenities:
Television
Soft, comfortable, and cozy linens
Hairdryer/Bathrobes
24-hour stateroom service
Ample closet and drawer space
Separate seating area

Suite

A spacious room, that includes Priority check-in during embarkation.

 Stateroom amenities:
Whirlpool bath
Vanity dressing table
Television
Soft, comfortable, and cozy linens
Hairdryer/Bathrobes
24-hour stateroom service
Ample closet and drawer space

Cabin Amenities

Rooms cover some of the basics, including a hair dryer, a small safe, and we appreciated the bathrobes. There were two frayed pool towels waiting for us on arrival. But some things we consider fairly standard were not present, including a fridge, minibar, and ice bucket.

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Sections

  1. Introduction
  2. Cabins
  3. Dining
  4. Drinks & Nightlife
  5. Activities
  6. Kids, Service, and Other Details
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
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Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

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