I was already booked on the liberty for the following week and was looking for something to take a couple of my friends on. Normally I would avoid the bahamas at any cost, but when I saw the independence was doing the route, and that balcony cabins were going at the same rate as inside cabins, I threw all reservations to the wind.
Now, as everyone knows a vacation is what you make of it, and if you want to have a bad time (as one reviewer clearly did on this same sailing) you definitely will! I dont subscribe to that theory at all. Here are some details.
Ft lauderdale is usually quite simple to get in and out of. We left the hotel at 1:15 pm and were on the ship by 2:30pm. There was a bit of a wait inside the terminal, (my friends were not crown and anchor members so I waited with them in the NON priority line).
I have sailed on the explorer, the navigator and the liberty so I was quite clear on what to expect with this ship. It was very clean, service was great as always and, in my opinion this class of ship with the Royal Promenade is so much nicer than any other cruise lines offerings.
The previous reviewer was devistated by the cancellation of the port of nassau. Personally, I could not be happier, the bahamas is yucky and by cancelling and moving to freeport meant that the last day would be 1/2 of a sea day(which I prefer as opposed to the greyhound bus method of port, to port, to port ). The port of nassau was cancelled due to a screw up with the Port NOT RCCL. While Freeport is a very small port, for my purposes, I walked off the ship, took a look around, had beverages at senior frogs, strolled through DEL-SOL my favorite store for sunglasses and went back on the ship.
I am not sure what horrible thing happened to the previous reviewer about getting off the ship. but I told my friends ( and I said a couple times a year) that this was the best debarkation I have ever experienced. EVER! I walked out of my stateroom at 8am and was standing at my gate at the airport before 9am. Amazing!
As far as I am concerned, it's rare that you get a chance to take a real ship to the bahamas (it's usually the small older ones). So I was absolutely thrilled. I truly dont have one bad thing to say, I got way more than what I paid for and exactly what I expected. I enjoyed the independence so much I am looking at a six nighter next month...