ARRIVAL at Port Everglades: My family of 4 took a taxi from the airport at around noon to Pier 25(Liberty was taking off at 4 pm). Traffic was backed up so bad, the taxi cost an extra $10 just sitting in gridlock. I know that is the peak time and a lot of ships where in Port but this is something to keep in mind when planning the arrival time.
CHECK IN at Port Everglades: Went very smoothly overall. We did bring in our allotted wine and that was so closely scrutinized, the guard who did the bag check actually broke the seal of our wine (screw cap) to make sure we hadn't tampered with the bottles.
FIRST IMPRESSIONS: I have sailed on Explorer of the Seas and Radiance of the Seas and comparing the crews of both those ships to Liberty of the Seas, the crew on Liberty I found to not be as friendly. Usually everyone says welcome aboard and appears jovial and friendly and this was not the case. The doors opened to allow us access to our rooms at 1 pm but the staff was not done cleaning. We were told we could leave our luggage in the room but we had to leave the cabin door open which made me concerned about security.
CABINS: #9389 (Balcony) and #9378 (Inside). I was really looking forward to the balcony cabin. The sliding door was really difficult to open and close and made a horrible noise. The people in the cabin next to us were smokers we quickly discovered. I ended up spending a total of 1 hour on the balcony the whole cruise because of the cigarette smoke. On day 3 we had notice in our cabin that we had to take everything off our balcony because they were doing cleaning/maintenance that day. On day 4 in the evening I stand on the balcony and rest my arms on the rail only to discover they had just put varnish on the railing. I had brown sticky arms. I don't understand how they messed up the schedule and would have at least appreciated a sign.
FOOD: We had My Time Dining. I have a food allergy and confirmed that with our head and assistant waiter. By the time dessert came, I was being served the food I was allergic to. We also waited 20 minutes for the dessert menu to be given to us and everyone at my table was served the wrong food. The next night we immediately asked to be moved to a different section. The next 2 individuals made a strong effort to keep us happy but every night I continued to receive the food ingredient I was allergic to. I don't like the new menu. I used to feel like I had a solid 2-3 choices of main courses to choose from and almost every night I could pick 1 but no more. My vegetarian daughter couldn't understand how the 3-cheese tortellini wasn't marked with the V (for vegetarian) and many other vegetable/starch only dishes were also missing the V. She missed the nightly curry dishes that used to be offered. My son missed the nightly option of cheesecake. The quality of food in general was good and everything seemed fresh and well-prepared.
ENTERTAINMENT: Best entertainment I have seen on a ship. Saturday Night Fever was awesome as was the Air show.
PORTS OF CALL: I have never seen such chaos as I did for passengers trying to take tenders to Belize. We waited to get off the ship for 90 minutes, 60 of which was not moving and watching passengers budge, cut and cheat to get to the tenders. One cruise staff was trying to monitor many potential points of entry and direct people. First people were in a hall but then told to move because the path was blocked. Then people had to congregate on the stairs, which the line went all the way up to deck 5. I heard and saw people from the Liberty staff actually starting to fight with each other and passengers became very belligerent with each other and the Liberty staff as well. Our independent excursion was in jeopardy but we were able to make it. It did cause a lot of stress and was definitely not managed professionally. Cozumel was a must better experience, primarily due to the lack of tender.