We have traveled on Royal Caribbean 3 times, twice on Voyager class ships and now on the Freedom. Our first impression was that she was enormous after seeing her sitting at the port. Embarkation was really very simple and surprisingly fast. We arrived at the pier around 12:30 and were actually on by 1:30 and our rooms were ready. We had three staterooms 2 connecting and one further down the hall. The porters at the pier were a bit rough and pushy but you just need to hold your breadth and move on. I do have a comment on RC though, we were travelling with 3 children over the age of 18 but under 21 and it seems that RC did not have anything to really cater to them.
Front desk was very helpful and I found them to be very professional. This was the first time I ran a cash account and nothing was published ahead of time stating that once the account reached $500 the cards would be deactivated, not a problem just a surprise.
The first day at sea was relaxing but the lack of pool space and the multitude of children that did not take advantage of the kids pool made relaxing in the pool almost impossible.
We only did 2 excursions, the party boat and beach at Cozumel and the Stingray snorkel and swim at Grand Cayman. Cozumel went fine but we were very disappointed with the Stingray tour. The tour was to leave at 1pm but we did not leave until 1:15. They piled us into an old school bus for a 25 minute ride to a holding area, where we were told that the boat that would bring us to the sandbar would be there shortly. In the meantime they bombarded us with attempts to purchase a ride on their surf machine and visit the surrounding stores. The little bit turned into an hour.
Once we reached the sandbar it was absolutely beautiful and lots of fun. I did fill out a comment sheet at the front desk and did receive a 35% credit on the excursion. I was not impressed with Jamaica, we were hounded by people trying to sell us drugs and trinkets. Labadee was a nice beach but my kids were told they could rent jet skis once they got there but at Labadee they were told they would need to purchase the excursion in order to jet ski.
The food was good, presentation was very nice but not any different from our past cruise. Service on this cruise was also a bit below past cruise. The midnight buffet was a disappointment. Instead of having it in the main dining rooms, they stuffed everyone into the Windjammer and pushed everyone through, not giving enough time to enjoy what was done.
Will we cruise RC again, most definitely, but we may drop back to the Voyager class to compensate for the additional passengers on the Freedom.