All around it was a wonderful Cruise. After reading most of the reviews about this ship, you would have doubts.. First, which nobody said in there review, was that the first day you board the ship, they offer you a package for beer, or a package for mixed drinks. And it was reasonably priced. Oh by the way you can buy water at the store, before you board the ship. Yes you can bring it on the ship. Another important point. Much cheaper than the water package.
The line to board the ship was a little long, but moved very well. After boarding and getting our beverage packages, we went to our stateroom which was ready and waiting for us. Very nice room with balcony. We boarded the ship around 2:30 P.M. I will agree that the smoking on the ship was out of hand. People were smoking where they were not suppose to quite often. But in general most smokers are rude about were they smoke if allowed to. If i owned a cruise line it would be no smoking period. I do not think I would have a problem filling my cruise line either.
The ship had some wear on it, but nothing to be offended at. Oh yes by the way, the ship is on its way to be overhauled this summer. The 70's music show on the promenade deck was a great time enjoyed by many. Only show we saw. To busy soaking in the sunshine on the upper deck, or the beach during the day. Pools on the ship where never crowed, and chairs were very plentiful. Took or own cab to beaches, watch the price, could have been cheaper going with the ships trips. Around 60 USD round trip to beaches, with chairs at beach. Most islands were the same cost to go to beaches. St. Croix, was worthless to even stop at. nothing there but a few shops. All the other islands had nice beaches with a lot of shopping if that's your thing.
We had the late sitting for dinner. (8:30) which for us, fit our schedule perfect. We were seated with two wonderful couples, one from the UK and one from Ireland. Needless to say it turned into a million laughs, with happy hour starting at 7:45 p.m. eating dinner, and than some late night drinks. We turned into friends in 6 nights. Our waiter and, asst. waiter, where the best there was, hands down. Angelo and Elroy. Thanks guys. The food in the dining room was good, with several choices every night. The Windjammer had a very good selection of different food if you did not want to eat in the main dining room.
We met a couple on there 25 year anniversary and there airline lost their luggage. The whole trip they wore the same cloths, but continued to have a good time. In summary we had a good time on this cruise. We are pretty easy going people, and do not knit pick on the little things. We have traveled Carnival before, and really did not see a whole lot of difference in ships or crew. It seem this cruise had a lot of very nice and enjoyable people. Carnival, seemed to be more young people, with a lot of amateur drinkers. We would cruise with Royal again, and we would recommend this to anyone, with a little open mind, and not to be critical about the small and free stuff.