| Originally Posted by melzy |
Hello, planning a cruise wedding with Carnival Splendor Apr 2009. kinda nervous because i might be rushed in the morning to get ready, and have to find somebody to do my hair/makeup early morning in l.a.
Any other cruise brides out there?
Posted 01 June 2008 - 04:57 PM
Posted 02 June 2008 - 12:43 PM
If you let the pursers desk know what you need I would bet money they can help arrange a early morning appointment even if the salon is not officially open. I know Carnival is great about doing this kind of thing.
Posted 02 June 2008 - 08:17 PM
1) Before the wedding I had to send multiple emails and make a ton of phone calls that took away from my contract time to correct the coordinators mistakes on things like Music, loads of typos and incorrect spelling of names, passport ID's, etc on the contract and final confirmation. They had my husband walking down the aisle to "Here comes the Bride" and NOT me!
2) The day of the wedding the coordinator was a half hour late. We were suppose to get Priority boarding as part of the wedding package we paid for but instead everyone else started the check in process before my wedding party. We actually got a down grade because my husband and I were Platinum members and we checked in after they did!
3) When the wedding coordinator did show up, she did not give us all priority. In the end my wedding party got on the boat at all different times.
4) The wedding coordinator did not have my custom vows or sand ceremony reading. She had no record of anything. Luckily I had copies with me so I spent a good 30 minutes with the officient myself before getting on the ship going over what she should be saying and when. It was nuts!
5) That week (and the previous 2 weeks) homeland security was doing training so we were delayed getting on the ship yet the coordinators knew this and still planned 3 weddings in the same day prior to leaving port. Mine was the first planned for 1 PM and I had been told a week earlier by the vendor that I would have at least an hour to get ready. Well, at 12:38PM it was announced that they would start boarding at 1:15. Needless to say I had to get 99.9% ready in the Port of Miami bathroom. Hair, makeup, etc. Bathroom.
6) When I mentioned to the coordinator that I was told I'd have an hour to get ready once on the ship, she told me that no one from her company would ever have told me that. Of course I gave her the name of the person who did but she still basically called me a liar on my wedding day.
7) At one point the coordinator said she wasn't sure what was going to happen with my wedding or if it was even going to happen at all. When asked, she couldn't give us any information regarding the possible scenarios either.
8 ) When we finally did start to board, our group was not given Priority and we ended up all getting separated. The coordinator only told me and my husband that our wedding would now be at 1:30 in the chapel and then she went MIA on us too! So my husband was running all over the place trying to touch base with our other 11 guests to let them know where they were suppose to go and when. Nightmare!
So with all of that, (there was more but I think you get the point) I had just enough time to pull on my dress and get to the chapel. It was the most stressful day of my life. Going in to it I was really calm but after that debocle I was shaking, sweating and ready to choke someone. It wasn't good at all.
The ceremony did end up being nice but everyone, including my 11 other guests, spent a lot of it upset over the morning incidents. By dinner time everyone was so tired / stressed out that we pretty much all just passed out.
The rest of the cruise was great though.
If I could have my wedding day back, and I was still crazy enough to want to do it on a cruise I would not pick the sailing day. I would probably try to do it at the first port as early in the day as possible or go on a cruiseline that could marry you at sea where you wouldn't be quite pressed on time. Looking back on it all, I think to be honest I would just fly to an island and pick a nice spot on the beach at sunset under a cabana or something.
Over all we are just really upset because we spent a lot of money and didn't feel like we got what we paid for. (We did ALL of the coordination, the vendor actually cause a l ot of unnecessary stress for us, and they did not fulfill their part of the contract) We made a formal complaint that is now being investigated. Not sure if they will do anything for us but we hope they will.
Posted 02 June 2008 - 09:05 PM
We went on Royal Caribbean's Freedom of the Seas. The ship and the cruise itself was amazing.
It turns out the coordinator / wedding piece of their business is all outsourced to some generic vendor that all of the cruiselines go through. So while they may call themselves Royal Romance on Royal Caribbean, they may be called something else on one of the other cruiselines.
After the wedding we complained to Royal Caribbean and they gave us a couple of freebies but nothing big (bottle of champagne, hats, keychains, other prizes they usually hand out througout the cruise) and they said they would support us on behalf of Royal Caribbean through communicating the 3 page letter, we had to write during our cruise, to the vendor.
It's been 2 weeks since the cruise and we haven't heard a thing from the vendor.
Posted 03 June 2008 - 12:06 AM
If at all possible, try not to do your wedding on the day of departure. One delay with security, or customs clearing the ship, and your whole schedule is screwed up (as it sounds like some of you have experienced). I know it's easiest especially when not all of the guests might be able to sail with you, but it's risky. Always have a Plan B, just to be safe.
Also consider your "in port" weddings and the time of year. If you're planning a wedding during hurricane season in the Caribbean, chances are high a port could be missed due to a storm. And then you're stuck again. Find out for sure what the backup plan is should that happen. If the ship is doing the wedding, they'll have something for you. But if you're getting married by a WC on island, you might be out of luck.
And lastly, my best advice is to use a TA to plan the trip. At the very least they can be copied on communication with these cruise line WC, and they should be stepping up for you if needed. Personally if one of my brides ever had this problem, I'd skip the WC superiors and would be knocking on the cruise line's President's door. If they want me to continue to sell their weddings, they WILL take care of my brides. Any TA should be able (and willing) to do the same.
Ok, enough of my rant. Sorry to hijack!
Posted 03 June 2008 - 08:52 AM
| Originally Posted by TA Dina |
And lastly, my best advice is to use a TA to plan the trip.
Best thing you can do is start reading cruising forums. Cruisemates is one of my favs and they are so friendly and helpful.
Posted 04 June 2008 - 09:13 AM
I have been reading a lot of posts on various websites and they have helped me out a lot with decisions of where and how I should plan my wedding. We are going on the Carnival Valor for a week starting October 26th. I was pretty sure I did not want to be married on the ship but at one of the ports. Because of the places we are cruising the only ones I could get married legally where Cayman Island and Cozumel. Well I went with the Cayman because its beautiful. I understand though that it can be dicey if there is weather. Someone said on a post well you have to set it in your head that if you do not make it there its ok and you have a plan B. So, I have made that decision that for some reason we do not make it then we will just get married back home.
The next decision is do I go through Carnival(the wedding experience) or do I find my own coordinator or venue. While reading posts from others it was mixed but more people were having bad experiences with the Wedding Experience. i was under the impression that if you went through the ship to even get married on the island if weather would happen you would then still get married or get your money back. Well this is not the case. Because Carnival and other ships for the most part do not have people on board to marry you they rely on the island offciant to come and do it. So if you don't get to that port your still not getting married. Well the wedding experience wanted 2150.00 up front just to say the date. That means we would loose that money if we didn't end up there. Also that would only cover me and my fiance and us getting married. that did not include anyone of our 30 guests. Also that was us getting married on a beach. If we wanted guests it was going to be $10 a person to stand on the beach. I was shocked.
I then kept hearing about The Grand Old House and the wedding coordinator there Desiree. Well i looked at the place and its georgous. They have been written up in all the wedding magazines and the NY times. I decided I would go with them. They only ask for a $500.00 deposit. The rest is paid when you are there. You have three packages to pick from. You can have as many add ons as you wish. Desiree has been wonderful communicating with me back and forth. If for some reason we do make it to the Cayman we get 70% of our money back. So to me its a no brainer.
Well this was my quick two cents. I am not sure how it will pan out considering I still have 4 months till it happens but I feel comfortable and good about it and that is what is nice.
Posted 04 June 2008 - 12:55 PM
| Originally Posted by trinka |
going on the Carnival Valor for a week starting October 26th. I was pretty sure I did not want to be married on the ship but at one of the ports. Because of the places we are cruising the only ones I could get married legally where Cayman Island and Cozumel. Well I went with the Cayman because its beautiful. I understand though that it can be dicey if there is weather.
Posted 06 June 2008 - 10:55 PM