Let me start by saying that I am 26 yrs old and have been on many cruises since I have been born. Mostly because we own a travel agency so we get vacations for dirt cheap. Cruises are no different and our vacation of choice. I have been on Carnival several times, along with all the other lines. I also work for the cruise pier in NYC, therefore we were able to bypass all of the embarkation lines :). There was one long line to board the ship, the line before hand to check in was insignificant. People were on within a half hour during the rush.
Many people love to complain and pick apart certain things, say that Carnival is not up to par, blah blah. Carnival is just as good as any line, and has its better points and worse points. It's a cruise! You'll enjoy it!
The food is excellent, how people can complain about food is beyond me. The food at the lido is fantastic and the options are endless. There is the deli, the chinese food, the hot food, the salads, the burgers, cheesesteaks, pizza and hot dogs. Oh and dessert. It's great, you'll find something and if you can't, then I feel sorry for you.
The only 2 subpar things I can say about the buffet (and these are small issues) is that there are long lines. This is the passengers fault because they are unbelievably slow. Also, the breakfast could have been hotter. It was still great though.
Another thing I found to be odd was that there are no cookies at all, only the ones you have to pay for in the coral sea cafe. Not a problem, just odd.
There happened to be no late night buffets at all this entire cruise which I also found weird. ALthough the BBQ was always open late and pizza was around for 24 hours. (And, yes, the pizza is very good).
The dining room was excellent, as good as any other cruise line as far as the service and food. I found that the food was actually out very fast which was nice.
The cabin was excellent, the best and most spacious at sea! The new beds they have are unbelievable!! Get a balcony - esp if you get room service or smoke.
Entertainment was very well done, the cruise director was good, they had the usual game shows, activities, bingo, casino and shows. Everything was great.
The ship itself is still in excellent shape after 6 years. A beautiful vessel but not quite as nice as the brand new ships (obviously) or the voyager class on RCL. But still al beautiful ship.
Debark was fine, they took a while to call us but you can basically leave at any time, you don't have to wait.
My opinion is: If you live in NY and want a quick and enjoyable getaway to Canada this summer without breaking the bank, choose the Victory. You won't be sorry.