PDA

View Full Version : Carnival's Sensation


DVCconvert
03-28-2006, 05:34 AM
I think I'll stick with DCL !

Cruise sensation woeful

Captain boots 6 after confrontation

BY SCOTT BLAKE
FLORIDA TODAY


Carnival Sensation's voyage from Port Canaveral was less than pleasant for many passengers. Six were kicked off Sunday in the Bahamas. Tim Shortt, FLORIDA TODAY



PORT CANAVERAL - The cruise that started badly ended worse for six passengers kicked off the Carnival Cruise Lines ship Sensation.

The six -- including an Iraq War veteran and a police officer -- took impromptu flights home Monday at their own expense after the ship's captain ordered them off the vessel during a stop Sunday in the Bahamas.

They were fuming.

"We were treated like animals," said Gregory Amditis of Vero Beach, who was told to leave the ship with his wife and parents.

The group of four and another couple -- upset about the ship's late departure Thursday from Port Canaveral after the vessel didn't pass a safety inspection and about other problems during the cruise -- asked for a refund and got into a disagreement with the ship's officers.

The six were put off the ship because they were being "very aggressive and verbally abusive," Carnival spokeswoman Jennifer de la Cruz said.

It didn't get any better Monday when the Sensation returned to Port Canaveral from the four-night voyage to the Bahamas. Some passengers said the ship -- returning to service after several months housing workers in Hurricane Katrina relief efforts on the Gulf Coast -- didn't seem ready: equipment wasn't working; facilities were out of service, and meals, service and activities were not up to par.

"It was a nightmare," said passenger Heather Russellof Tampa, adding that the water in her shower and sink was discolored.

It's normal to have some glitches when a ship returns to service, de la Cruz said, but Carnival "wouldn't have put it back into service if we didn't feel it was ready for guests."

The Sensation's first voyage out of Brevard County's seaport seemed ill-fated from the start when the ship failed a Coast Guard safety inspection Thursday. The crew fixed the problems, but the ship departed more than six hours late, putting some passengers in a bad mood after they waited hours in their cars or outdoors to board the vessel.

Kicked off ship

During the cruise, after what appeared to be sewage bubbled up in the bathroom drain of their cabin, Nathan and Jennifer Leslie demanded to speak to the captain. She said other passengers had to sleep on cots in the halls because there were problems with their rooms.

"We were just so fed up we couldn't keep our mouths shut," Jennifer Leslie said.

Leslie said she and her husband, an Army soldier, were taking their first vacation since he returned home from an 18-month tour of duty in Iraq.

Leslie said the ship's officers seemed to overreact after some in the group "raised their voices." Afterward, Leslie and her husband left the ship to look around Nassau. When they tried to get on the ship again, they were stopped by security guards, taken to their cabins for their belongings, then escorted off the vessel.

Leslie said they are considering taking legal action against Carnival, the industry's largest line.

"We're talking to attorneys now," she said. "We're not letting this go."

Overall, eight passengers approached the ship's officers in Nassau, but two "calmed down" and were allowed to stay onboard, de la Cruz said. The six others were removed because they continued to be abusive, she said.

The decision to make them leave the ship was made by the captain, in consultation with Carnival's management at company headquarters in Miami, she said.

Carnival offered to pay for their airfare, but the six ended up flying back to Florida on Monday at their own expense.

"You have to be behaving in an extremely abusive manner to be put off a ship," de la Cruz added.

The ousted passengers said they were frustrated, but not out of control.

"We weren't angry," Amditis said. "The captain kept cutting us off. He had a smirk on his face. His arrogance was awful."

Amditis said his wife broke into tears during the ordeal. They paid for a hotel room in Nassau, then flew back in a small plane to Orlando International Airport. A relative took them back to their car at Port Canaveral.

"I can't believe this happened," said Amditis' mother, Beverly Housenick of Vero Beach, who was ordered to leave the ship with her husband, a deputy sheriff in St. Lucie County.

"We were dumped off in a foreign country," she added. "My husband is in law enforcement. We're not a bunch of rowdy kids. We're adults. We were angry, but we were respectful" to the officers.

'A total disaster'

Some passengers who finished the cruise at Port Canaveral also were not happy.

David Lattanzio, a passenger from Arkansas, said noisy repairs were being made on the ship during the cruise.

"The good news is the ship didn't sink," he said.

Luis Hernandez, a passenger from Montreal, called the children's activities program "a total disaster."

"The employees tried their best," Hernandez added. "You could tell they knew what people were going through."

In addition, a few passengers said calls for room service went unanswered; swimming pools didn't look clean; some lights and elevators didn't work; and the food was disappointing. They also said some public restrooms weren't in service; the air conditioning and water pressure wasn't good in some cabins; and a late arrival in the Bahamas caused some passengers to miss scheduled shore excursions.

After Thursday's late departure, Carnival gave each of the roughly 2,000 passengers a $50 onboard expense credit and
25 percent off a future Carnival cruise.

Passengers with complaints should contact Carnival so the company can address those matters, de la Cruz said.

Some passengers said they intended to do just that, filing complaints or refusing to take another cruise with Carnival.

"It was just a bad trip," passenger Stephanie Bell of California said.

kaceyisme
03-28-2006, 06:38 AM
Wow, what a nightmare for those poor people!

ivanova
03-28-2006, 09:11 AM
I normally don't recommend doing the first cruise after any ship comes out of drydock, regardless of the cruise line ... but this is over the top.

After the Star Princess episode I can definitely understand the late boarding while the made repairs in order to pass Coast Guard inspections ... but after that it sounds like it just went down hill.

tvguy
03-28-2006, 09:34 AM
I'm surprised they got booted. Carnivale, especially during spring break, is known for some pretty wild cruises.......word is on some of the 3 and 4 day west coast cruises during spring break folks NEVER sleep.....stay awake the entire cruise partying.

ivanova
03-28-2006, 02:17 PM
I'm surprised they got booted. Carnivale, especially during spring break, is known for some pretty wild cruises.......word is on some of the 3 and 4 day west coast cruises during spring break folks NEVER sleep.....stay awake the entire cruise partying.
There is a difference between wild partying, and being (supposedly) verbally abusive to the staff.

clovely
03-28-2006, 03:08 PM
It's a hard sell to try to claim a police officer and soldier were being so beligerant and out of control they had to be put off the ship...not without the crew being outrageously rude and/or insulting. With that many people complaining about that many problems, Carnival is going to need to try to settle this with these people ASAP.

Mjasp
03-28-2006, 04:00 PM
It's a hard sell to try to claim a police officer and soldier were being so beligerant and out of control they had to be put off the ship...not without the crew being outrageously rude and/or insulting. With that many people complaining about that many problems, Carnival is going to need to try to settle this with these people ASAP.

Very good friends with both of these occupations and I can see it happening.
But I can also see the captain being very aloof and provoking them.

What do you think DCL would do if guests got abusive with the captain? Don't know the protocol, does anyone here know?

pppiglet
03-28-2006, 04:29 PM
Also you can't judge the whole line by what happened on this one ship. My Carnival cruise was just as great as my DCL cruise! I think I might be real selective on which ship I went on though!