Sometimes, only an apology and a full refund can make up for a disastrous vacation. Iesha Walker believes her experience on Carnival’s Destiny is one of those times.
But first, let’s watch the video.
Among the issues Walker documented in her cabin were wires hanging from the lamps above the beds, a soiled toilet seat and toilet bowl, a grimy shower stall, broken tiles and a broken wall panel above the bed.
But the the bugs are what make her exclaim, “That’s it! I’m outtta here!” in the first few seconds of the tape.
I’ve contacted Carnival for a comment. It hasn’t responded.
Walker handled this grievance by the book, as far as I can tell. She immediately informed the cruise line of her disappointment. But all she could do was leave phone messages with the purser’s office. Finally, she showed up to the office in person with a videotape of the bugs. But a manager refused to watch it, deferring to the cabin steward.
I informed him again that the cabin steward was well aware of all of the issues. I asked if there was any way that we could be moved into a different cabin, and he stated that the ship was at capacity.
I asked him what the procedures were for emergency circumstances when the ship was at capacity. He informed us that there was nothing he could do for us. He said we had to wait in the lobby while he sent someone to further inspect the cabin to see if it were livable.
The inspection revealed that there was, indeed, an “infestation” and Walker was given two options. Either disembark the ship at the first port of call and return home at her own expense, or remain in the bug-infested cabin after it was sprayed.
We had no place to sleep and it was extremely late at night. We sat in the lobby until 3 a.m., waiting for a solution.
Carnival eventually agreed to put Walker, her daughter and a traveling companion into a smaller cabin. But it wasn’t an ideal solution, since she was claustrophobic — not to mention the fact that it contradicted the cruise line’s insistence that it was fully booked.
The next night, they were offered a different cabin in the same class they were booked, but it also had problems, including water dripping along the walls and a strong smell of marijuana smoke.
Carnival offered them a partial refund of $420. Not enough, says Walker. She voided the check and returned it to the company.
My vacation was ruined and impacted on the vacations of my entire group.
I did not sleep the entire cruise due to panic attacks from the claustrophobia and the fact that I was constantly looking out for bugs in the cabin ensuring my daughter’s safety.
The Carnival Destiny should be harbored until it can be fixed or destroyed. There were more buckets laid out to catch flooding waters from the ceiling than I have ever seen before. The ship is a hazard to its guests and the crew.
It is obviously infested, poorly managed and poorly maintained.
Walker continued to press for more compensation. She sent Carnival a letter outlining her grievance, but was met with a form response.
I think Walker makes a strong case for a full refund.