Carnival Dream Cruise Review by vhash77: Could have been better
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Could have been better
My husband and I sailed on the Carnival Dream September 7 to 14, 2013. A celebration for my husband's birthday. The Carnival Personal Vacation Planner Carlos was great to work with. We booked in May 2013, worked through a few quirks with the pricing and opted for the Faster to the Fun option for this cruise - our first time trying this option.
September 7th arrives, excitedly we depart from our hotel - who by the way did an awesome job with their Fly Snooze and Cruise package deal pre and post cruise (Comfort Inn Cocoa Beach).
Security check in goes smoothly and by 9am we are sitting in the FTTF section of the cruise terminal - just adjacent to the VIP lounge. By 10:30 they begin boarding - only to have a snaffu of calling the FTTF folks ahead of the Plantium folks - here we go walking in our line - only to have a representative frantically tells us - no no no - sit sit sit - - we all have to find seats and 3 minutes doesn't even pass then the same representative More says - ok you can go now -geez - get your act together folks!
The Carnival Dream - supposedly one of the better ships of Carnival fleet - not in my opinion! While the Carnival Dream has all these lovely decorations and ambiance - having a cabin without appropriate air conditioning makes for a miserable trip of non-rest throughout the night. There was no air flow in our cabin when we walked in - we had to call guest services twice for maintenance to come to our room - before we left the port there was air flow but it wasn't cool - our room stayed at 73.9 degrees the entire trip - it was cooler in the hall and public areas than in our room - and all we were told by guest services - it's within Carnival's standard - no offer to make a finanical adjustment on our rate, or apology.
Then this "dream" room has another incident on day 2- it's the shower - it doesn't drain - my husband stands in ankle deep water - granted it's repaired but do you think there is any mention of - we are so sorry - NOPE - only our cabin steward seemed to even be truely concerned. OH but wait - there's more about this cabin - the next day - 3rd sail day the sink plunger stops working and the water faucet literally sprays water everywhere when turned on - another call for maintaince to repair something in our room.
One would think after a past guest has 3 separate legitamte complaints/issues with their room that some form of "we're sorry, here's a credit for your inconveniences" would be offered - - even after complaining on the customer survey and an e-mail to guest services - still no finance credit - oh but we did get a - we are so sorry you had such issues e-mail from guest services - gee thanks!
This ship is huge, it involves alot of walking from any elevator/step location so you will get lots of exercise. Due to the amount of people on this ship, you will have many long waits for elevators - if you are healthy enough - take the stairs.
If you choose the dine at your time option - be prepared to have a pager placed into your hand and told you will have a 30 to 45 minutes wait time - and then when you are seated in the main dining room be prepared for more long waits, be overlooked, have to repeatedly ask your server for your iced tea, cold food, and the list can go on.
The bottomless soda program - what a joke - my husband paid $50.00 for this little sticker on his card, only to have the inconvenience of getting back in line at the lido bars, or sit and wait and wait in the dining rooms for refills - you are not allowed to have the can of soda they open to pour into your glass that is completely full of ice - my husband would have been much better off to have brought his soda on board and asked for glassees of ice! Don't bother buying this sticker instead bring on board your own.
I really wish I could have given this ship a rave review, for it is a beautiful ship - the design is a little quirky on getting from the 10th deck up to the 14th deck. My husband and I did like the funky rockers, serenity deck sitting area with hammocks - the best time to utilize these is at sunrise when no one is out on the ship. One other issue we did have with the ship was the jacuzzi's on the 5th deck had cold water - the best jacuzzi is in the serenity level 14th deck.
One other tip - stay alert to when your ship docks, there isn't always announcements staying your cleared to disembark.
As far as the shows and the commedians, they are good if you can work them into your schedule - so many options to choose from. Less
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Cabin review: Carnival Dream Interior Empress 7393
Interior Cabin 7393 is located beside the steward service access room so you will hear some noise from that area but not alot. Be sure the air conditioner is repaired and works in this room - otherwise - you will experience the 73.9 temperature the entire time you cruise. For an interior cabin we had alot of room, sufficient space in the bathroom to store multiple items, the shower - small - not really enough room to turn around in if you are not skinny skinny.
Port and Shore Excursions
Originally I had communicated with a tour operator and had plans - long story - those plans were changed in port - grab a taxi when you disembark - see this tiny island - won't take you long and will be well worth the $20 per person - the water is beautiful!
This was our third visit to Nassau, we walked the port area, went through the straw market, and did a horse carriage ride. Enjoyed the carriage ride for we saw parts of Nassau we had not seen before - little pricey though.
There will be plenty of taxi drivers waiting to greet you at the port, but the best thing you can do is get a map of San Juan in advance, research and pick what you want to see - for most likely you will only have a few hours in port. El Morro Fort is beautiful, the Raccies Fountain and City Gate are well worth the walk. We utilized the free trolley services in San Juan. My husband and I also did a horse carriage ride in San Juan - great way to see some sites without all the walking. Don't forget to stop at Don Q Rum Factory for a free sample of their rum.
Grab a taxi, negogiate your price before you board and your locations. The only negative I can say is we were not taken to Mountain Top, our taxi driver told us it was closed to his taxi service that day. But the taxi driver did a great job of showing us the island sites, dropped us off at Charlotte Amelia for shopping, then we grabbed another taxi back to port - $4.00 per person for taxi - and the tour was $25 per person - another great fine at St Thomas is the Butterfly Exhibit right in the port - great for kids to experience! Again do your research on-line before you go so you will know the sites you want to see for you will have little time in port.