Sailed on the Glory week of July 29, 2013. Two main reasons for taking the trip were 1. We have been to many Caribbean Islands and wanted something new; and 2. Impressed with a lot of the reviews. Even with the bad wrap that Carnival gets, our two cruises with Carnival were fun so it did not deter us. Unfortunately, the Glory trip has changed our opinion of Carnival and we will not cruise with this line again. Here are the pros and cons:
1. Average ship. Nothing fantastic and nothing really bad. Layout is a bit bizarre, but not that funky.
2. Onboard check-in was very smooth. We stayed at a stay, park and cruise (Crowne hotel, Newport Airport). We were on-board by 11:30 a.m..
1. Late night dining staff was very good. Food has gone done compared to previous cruises. My son's steak the first night was very tough and portions were notably smaller. But overall, the formal dining was not terribly bad, but, not really at the level of other cruise lines.
2. "Brunch": This was new to us. Breakfast and lunch options for a Brunch menu. The food was great, but, service horrific. One morning it took close to two hours to finish. The server never came back to our table, I never received a second cup of coffee, etc., This happened 3 out of 5 breakfasts. Very unusual.
3. Entertainment: This ship gets a 1 out of 5. There was no real entertainment or activities. A lot of what there was is in the Casino bar. Cough, cough...Really? A scavenger family hunt in the Casino filled with smoke? There is some type of run-way show one night and really nothing more. The highlight was a magic show that was never a Headliner (the run-way "Diva" show was) and in one of the Bars that was so tight with people, we watched the magician's show from the back and listen to the blender going on all night. No one heard a thing. The only decent entertainment was comedians that did a few family shows--again in bars with limited seating and the only reason entertainment gets a 1. Very few activities. The highlight of the last day was a scavenger hunt.
4. Bingo: This is one of the things my son loves to do at least once on a cruise w/me. There were maybe two games and no machines. Just the old fashioned punch-out cards.
5. Teen Program Club 02. This is normally one of Carnival's strengths. However, the Teen program was very poor with little "real" activities to do. The first night the teens sat in the club for five hours and just talked. There was nothing else to do. The second night some 18 and 19 yr. olds got into the club that had been drinking and completely trashed the place. My son went with his best friend on this cruise and came back to the cabin and never went back again.
Conclusion: I was confused with the reviews and our experience on the Glory. Myself and several passengers complained about the entertainment/activities or rather the lack of to Customer Service. We were told the ship had been downgraded by Carnival to a "2" category. Funny, my money didn't get downgraded. We were at breakfast the last day and a large table next to us were talking to each other and said "o.k., what did everyone like about this cruise"? Unanimously, the table said "nothing!". Get the picture? We were very lucky as the weather was beautiful to see Nova Scotia. But, it is a very hit or miss thing. The prior week, the staff told us it was rainy and very cold. If you are in bad weather and on a ship with little to do, you have a bit of a problem. I would not waste my money on what could be a very nice trip. A couple of the other cruise lines has this route--I would pay the extra money. Most people left the cruise grumbling.