Trip fail: The Bahamas

The Bahamas, by Packing my Suitcase

Oh well, not every trip goes the way we plan or how we expect it to be, right? I also have my own failed trips, and I thought of sharing the worst of them with you. After all, Packing my Suitcase it’s also here to help you not to make the same mistakes I’ve made.

I bet when you read the title you probably thought: how come traveling to the Bahamas can be a failure? Well my dear readers, I also couldn’t predict that, neither my father nor my sisters!

Back in July 2010 I was in Miami with my father and my two sisters for a few days. At our hotel – a very well known one; no need to mention the name – there was a tourist agent selling a few day trips, and 2 particular options called our attention: the Bahamas and Key West. We thought about doing one of them if we still had a little time left on our last day in the city. We ended up deciding for the Bahamas; my father was really excited about it, like a kid!

The day trip was not cheap, I don’t remember the exact amount, but it was something around U$ 400 per person. We would go by ship from Fort Lauderdale and would have a few hours in Freeport, then head back to Miami at the end of the day. The package included the ferry tickets and transfers from and to our hotel; the tourist agent highly recommended the trip, and said that the boat was huge with lots to do, including a pool and casino. Since we would spend 10 hours on board – 5 hours to get there and another 5 to come back – we found this very exciting; we would have lots to do on board!

Surprisingly or not, the ship wasn’t what we expected at all! Ok it was big, but I guess the tourist agent forgot to tell us that the entire ship had mildew smell and that a porno movie was being filmed at the pool! We looked at each other and thought: its not that bad, its only 10 hours! Sadly we didn’t know how long these 10 hours would be!

I couldn’t stop sneezing because of the mildew smell! But hey, at least my father had some fun playing at the “casino” with those slot machines only to loose a few more dollars to the stinky ship! After the first 5 hours, we arrived in Freeport. We saw an amazing cruise ship and thought to ourselves how amazing it would be if our ship were that one!

Not our ship!

Not our ship!

We only had 3 hours in the Bahamas. Enough to eat at a Greek restaurant that my father and sisters hated and we almost didn’t get the check, as it seemed no one was working there. After walking around, my humor already changed from hopeful to really bad. Everyone was already in a bad mood and no one wanted to admit how bad this idea was.

We found a hotel where my father went to play at the casino and I went to the beach with one of my sisters, at least to say: yay we came to the Bahamas! And these are the few shots my humor allowed me to take of the island:

The Bahamas, by Packing my Suitcase

The Bahamas, by Packing my Suitcase

The Bahamas, by Packing my Suitcase

When the time to go back to the ship came, everyone was already stressed out and complaining. Well, only 5 more hours and it will be over! As you can imagine, the left 5 hours seemed like an entire day. We were really tired, siting on the very uncomfortable chairs at the top deck of the ship, just laughing at the situation:

10 hour in a stinky ship with weird people just to be on the Bahamas for 3 hours, eat crap food, lose money at the casino and take 2 pictures of the beautiful water of the island. Oh no! Wait, there is more!

As we were lying down on the chairs, trying to get a nap, a very weird guy was staring at my youngest sister and was coming closer and closer, until he sat beside her. We had to move because the guy just wouldn’t go away and stop staring!

Thinking this is the end of it? When we finally arrived at the port in Fort Lauderdale and found our transfer van, a storm came – a really bad one – and 2 of the passengers were still missing. Guess what? We waited over 2 hours inside the van, just to discover that these 2 passengers were already there the whole time! Don’t ask me how this happened, on this day everything was possible. We left the hotel at 7am and came back at 2am… the following day I had to drive from Miami to Orlando, but that is another story, a successful one!

Oh, guess who was blamed for the trip? ME! Just because I was the one speaking English!


I don’t usually post photos of myself, but I had to show you this one so you get an idea of my humor that day.

So my tip for you is: don’t make a day tour to the Bahamas, and if you do, make sure you will be on board of a nice ship!


Did you have a failed trip before? Please do share yours, so I can feel less miserable about mine!

About Allane

A Brazilian living in Germany. Married to W. mommy to a baby girl and a Golden Retriever. Traveler, writer, aspiring photographer, diver, wine appreciator, Formula 1 fan, avid reader of historical and young adult fictions books. City girl, nature lover, believer of a better world, one little change at a time.

  • aww failed trips are so upsetting 🙁 but at least they make for good stories!

    • hahaha very true! At that time we were mad, but now I just laugh at it 😀

  • Sha

    Lol, I have plenty of stories when things don’t really work out..although not many lasts through the whole day and not as bad as yours. All I can say is that, sometimes when you travel, you just have to go along with it or you will spoil your whole trip. At least you got to see the bahamas!! (Trying to find a silver lining in all these…:)) hehe…

    • hahaha true Sha! Today I just laugh at the situation… but everytime I mention this trip to my dad he gets upset hahaha!! I would love to know more about you failed trips 😀 its good to know, so we dont make the same mistake hahaha 😀

  • The problems I had on my trips are not even close as bad as yours, haha. I always say “at least I have a funny story” after any experience that didn’t go as planned. 🙂

    • hahaha lucky you Vlad!! Its true…failed trips are always a funny story, though Im hopping I wont have any more failed trips neither you hahaha 😀

  • Thank you for your honest and funny story 🙂 one trip we did not enjoy was a just-over-one-day trip to Copenhagen from London…. It was just too short….. Too much tiredness leading to bad mood leading to arguments…. Now I just look at some of the pretty pictures and try not to think about the back story 🙂

    • Ohhh thank you for sharing your trip fail!! Im sorry about it, now you have to go back there and spend more time! Glad you have the pictures to look at, that surely counts as a positive fact 😀

  • I know it is not much fun there and then when things like this happen. But it usually turns to be a good and funny story afterwards. Like this one 😉
    I am not too fan of cruise trips, just because you do not get so much time at each place. I love to really get to know the cultures and talk to the local people. But there is no time for that when going on a cruise. However, for relaxing it is usually top! If you get a good ship though! And not a smelly and bad one like you did 😉
    Thanks for sharing!

    • You are right! The bad story ended up being a funny one today 😀

      I have never done a real cruise trip, apart from this one… but I also believe that you dont enjoy the places as much as you should, thats why the ship must be pretty cool, so you have something fun to do in the meantime hahaha

      Im happy you liked my story 😀

  • I cannot believe!!!! I hope you complained and got some of your money back!!!! Well, maybe you had no real arguments to ask for that but I don’t think showing a porno film is correct…. Shame on this company. Post the name so that others can avoid making this mistake!

    • The problem is that I couldnt complain as we got back to the hotel too late and we had to leave pretty early to Orlando, so I didnt have the chance to talk to the guy anymore. I dont remember which company he was from, but I know he was based on the Intercontinental Hotel! 🙁

      • Shame on Intercon!! That sucks and it was quite pricy…

  • Oh man, I’m sorry you guys went through this. It’s actually a scam. I’ve heard of this one several times and they almost got me and my husband. It’s always a Bahamas trip from Florida, they really try to sell it and they make it sound good, but it really is a scam.

    • Ohh really?? Thats pretty bad! I would never thought mine was a scam because it was a tourist agent based at the Intercontinental Hotel…so I trusted them! Ohh well, never again! I will go to the Bahamas on my own way next time 😀

  • Shikha (whywasteannualleave)

    hehe, oh dear – sounds like this turned out to be a bit of a disaster but really well written – I like how you’ve shared this mishap though – I often think we bloggers are guilty of mainly writing about the good stuff when in fact there are some great and funny stories to be told about the times we would have done differently!

    • Thank you!! I am happy that you liked it! I totally agree with you… before I thought of not sharing anything about the Bahamas as I dont even consider I was there, but then I thought that negative things can also be shared and sometimes and turn out to be funny too hahaha so I decided to share it this way! Its also good to help other not to make the same mistake! 🙂

  • Oh my goodness! What a disaster! I feel bad laughing at your misery though lol

    • hahahaahaha Im happy you laughed at it, I did too while writing it! It was a day my father decided to forget hahaha

  • Oh my gosh that sounds like a really rough day! Glad you can laugh about it now and hopefully it didn’t ruin the rest of your vacation!
    I was trying to think about a tough travel experience and the one that comes to mind is when both my husband and I got food poisoning in the Cook Islands….on our honeymoon! we got over it but being that sick was so not fun. My advice is always bring antibiotics if you’re traveling abroad!

    • hahaha yes it was a veeeery long day, we thought it would never end! Ohh Jessica poor you, food poisoning during honeymoon is also pretty bad 🙁 Im sorry about that!! And your tip is great, I always bring some medicine along exactly for being afraid of something like this happening…

  • Wow! This really sounds like a horrifying experience, but I’m glad you can laugh at it now. I don’t think there’s a traveler among us, who hasn’t had what seems like a great idea turn into a trip fail. Lol…even worse, your dad was there and now he will hold it against you for the rest of your life. 😉

    • hahaha yes it was pretty bad! We had no choice but get on with it the whole day… and yes its awesome that I can laugh about it now 😀 I have heard many trip fail from friends, I also believe it happens at least once with all of us hahaha. And yes, my dad still blames me, as if it was me who decided to go hahaha 😀

  • I was supposed to fly to Auckland for a vacation and ended up taking a detour through Sydney, making it to Auckland 8 hours later than planned with no luggage. 🙂

    • Ohhhh nooo!!! Really? Im so sorry! But Im sure today you can laugh about it 😀

      • I remember laughing about it with the person at Air New Zealand who was trying to find out what continent my bag was on, so I guess I wasn’t too distressed about it 🙂

        • hahahaahah I had a similar problem too, but it was quickly solved at least 😀

  • That’s the saddest story. I can’t imagine being on a musty boat for so long just to spend a few hours at a destination. And to top it off you had to deal with that creepy guy?! Sorry, but I had to laugh at the end of this post. That’s crazy that you guys waited in the van for two hours and the “missing” passengers were there the whole time. How is that possible? Ugh, that sounds like a bad travel day. And that photo of you definitely sums it up. Glad you decided to include it 🙂

    • hahahaha glad you liked it 😀 I have to tell you, it was A day…oh God, never again! I figured I had to share my misery hahaha

  • Sorry for laughing but hahahaha! At least you got a great story out of it! 🙂

  • Crappy! Sorry to hear that, it’s one of those days during a, my experience on a failed trip? he-eh, it was when we were in Cozumel – Mexico. It was a failed dive trip. Totally unsafe, unorganized and we almost hit a cruise ship during our dive! Now we think it was a funny and weird experience than a failed one. Laugh on such thing is the best medicine 😉 Someday I will write it on a post 🙂

    • hahaha oh my really? Im sorry about your too! Now I am very curious to know how it was, I will definitely look forward to reading this post hahaha 😀

  • Failed holidays do make for the best post-holiday stories… I am sorry for the crappy experience you had 🙁 , but glad you seem to see a funnier side of it all in hindsight… and that you chose to share the story. Love the “not our ship” pic and your pic too. In the last paragraph of my last post I talk about my biggest travel fail EVER in India… and I have had quite a few (it’s a bit too involved to reiterate here)… which ended up being a win, but in the most intense and scary of ways!
    Others include allergic reaction to tropical spider bite in Fiji, lost in Japan after missing the bullet train (with only 100 yen left and no phone), caught in a freak sandstorm in Siberia… actually, I have had some shockers, I realise as I type this. Hahaha. Lucky I lived to tell the tale/s actually!

    • hahaha yes today it became a funny story 😀 ohhh wow, you have been through a lot in your trips, thank God you are alive to tell these stories!! Thank you for sharing a bit of your failed trips too! Its always a comfort knowing others also have bad experiences while traveling… Im sorry about yours! A spider bite? Ohh noo!! I hope it wasnt so bad as it seems!! I would freak out, I am very afraid of spiders!! 😀

      • Oh, what happened with the spider was ***nothing*** compared to what happened in India. But I loathe spiders too!!!
        Hope you’re having a great weekend!

  • Ahh sorry to hear that, but things happened (good and bad) its part of the awesomeness of traveling. The best thing is that we learn from our no so good experiences! 🙂

    • Yes you are right, we surely learn from our bad experiences!! Next time I visit the Bahamas I hope it will be better hahaha 😀

  • Hahahaha! This was a very funny story. So glad you shared it and my face is now like this on Sunday night XD A porno movie filmed at the pool??? Oh gosh, and everyone on board could watch but I don’t think you did… LOL. This sounded like a trip where the travel agent only explained half of it to you 😀

    • hahahaha glad it made you smile Mabel 😀
      Yes, pretty crazy… and no I didnt watch it hahaha we tried to avoid the pool the entire trip!
      I know right? A pretty honest travel agent! never again 🙂

      • Hahaha. But that’s the fun of doing something spontaneous 😀 At least you weren’t bored, except when in the van!

        • hahahaha true!! But next time I go there, I might have to plan, so things go better 😀

  • OMG, this is funny but I can’t help to feel sorry for you ! Shit happens sometimes, but it’s really annoying when it costs so much ! It’s a trip you will never forget 😀

    • hahahaha I know right? It was really expensive for one bad day for 4 people hahaha, never again!! 😀 glad you liked the story haha

  • Sorry to hear you had such a bad trip! On the positive side, I think it is better to take a chance and try new things. This time it didn’t work out but hopefully the next opportunity will be a spectacular adventure! I’ve had lots of travel fails as well but they make such great stories, don’t they?:p

    • Yes you are right!! We do have to try, we never know if we are going to like it if we dont try! And yes, the best things of these fail trips are the good stories we have to tell hahaha 😀 thank you for stopping by!!

  • Great idea to share, we’ve all had failed trips or at least negative aspects to trips. Bedbugs on a tropical island holiday was a low point for me.

    • Ohhh nooo really? Sorry to hear that!! Yes, all of us had something negative in a trip, I find it nice to share these moments too 😀

  • Just glad you were all together!

  • LOL! Reading about your trip put a smile on my face. And your look in the picture said it all! I know exactly how you felt – having to travel 5 hours there, getting only 3 hours to look around and then making the 5-hour journey back. No laughing matter. The only thing I am puzzled about is how you guys could have spent 2 hours looking for two passengers who there all the time. Were they inflicted with temporary amnesia and forgot their own identities? 🙂

    I’m sharing with you the link to my post about my tour leader from hell! Allane, you are not alone!

    • hahaahaha I am happy to have made you laugh Helene 😀 Yesss I was a very bad day!! Until today I dont know how they lost these 2 people… they didnt tell us who was missing, they just thought 2 people weren’t there and didnt say their names… it was only after that they realize the people were already there!! But I also dont understand how did that happen!! Ohhhh I am taking a look at now hahahaha glad to know Im not alone 😀

  • Oh God, that sounds awful – I hope you are able to look back on it and laugh now!

  • Yikes. This sounds awful. I took a day cruise to the Bahamas once. It wasn’t remarkable, but we did enjoy our time on the island. Luckily, we spent two nights there and then sailed back, so had plenty of time to wander.

    • Oh yes it wasnt the best idea 🙁 lucky you! You did the right thing! One day I want to go back there and stay longer and go diving 😀

  • You can’t help but still love the turquoise water right?