Having taken 3 cruises on Disney Cruise Lines with our entire family, we had lowered our expectations for this 5 day cruise with Carnival. I can happily report that this cruise exceeded our expectations!
We travelled from Winston Salem to Charleston the day before we were to set sail. We chose to stay at the Hampton Inn and take advantage of their Package that allowed us to keep our car parked at the hotel and they provided a shuttle to the port. It worked well. The shuttle delivered us to the port and the driver offered much helpful information. At the end of the cruise the shuttle was waiting at the time the driver had promised.
Check-in at the Carnival counter was seamless and the lines moved at a reasonable pace for such a large crowd.
Upon embarkation we found our cabin and it was ready. We stowed our carry-ons and had lunch. Our luggage had been delivered to our cabin upon our return.
Our cabin was clean and sufficient for the two of us. Our cabin steward was friendly and very helpful. Throughout the cruise all crew and staff members we encountered were courteous and helpful. Previous reviewers noted the age of the ship as a negative but I never saw anything that indicated that the ship's age hampered our experience. It was clean, colorful and fresh.
Odds and Ends
We took some bottles of water and soft drinks. Using the cooler we packed, we kept our drinks cold thanks to the daily refills of ice provided by our cabin steward.
We took a power strip as suggested in many of the reviews but used it very little.
We chose the Your Time Dining option. All meals were taken in the same dining room. We had a short wait each evening(15 min) and experienced a variety of servers. All of them were accommodating, some more conversational than others. Service was good. Menus were varied and the quality of the food good.
We ate lunch at the various offerings on the Lido deck. The food was plentiful and good.
We attended several of the entertainment offerings. The shows were worthwhile, the comedians funny. The cruise director was quite the showman and served up many laughs in the various game shows and other offerings.
For those seeking the late evening party atmosphere it is available. For those seeking a time rest and relaxation it can also be found on board. Our cabin was always a quiet place to take an afternoon nap or get a good nights sleep. The beds were comfortable and the cool Air was always flowing.
We chose the self-assist disembarkation option. We headed to the main lobby at 615am and as scheduled the disembarkation began at 630am. We processed through customs and were seated on our hotel shuttle at 7am. Best disembarkation we've ever experienced.
Overall, a great cruise experience for a very reasonable price.