We have never taken the kids before and decided to take our 12 month old., 10 year old and 15 year old on our anniversary cruise. We had two cabins right next to one another ( 9466 and 9462). We had our air on full blast and it was perfect .The air conditioning was always cool and nice on the ship.
The ship did not smell at all. I had read many reviews that the ship smelled. That was not true at all. I had read many mixed reviews about this ship but it was a very nice vacation and ship. Beautiful ship.
Embarkation was a breeze! We arrived at the terminal around 12:00 and we were on the ship by 12:40. Once on the ship we were directed to the Lido deck for lunch on deck 10. Once we arrived to deck 10 for the buffet we could not find a table it was so packed. After about 15 minutes we were able to get a table and eat. The food at the buffet was decent but some was not good at all. The desserts were pretty bad. The breakfast pasties were very good but the eggs, bacon, sausage were not worth eating. If you go there to eat I would stick with the carved meats, potatoes and made to order omelets for breakfast. Also the burrito bar was tasty.The rest is pretty blah.
The food everywhere else was very good. The pasta bar, Mongolian Bar, Pizza and Deli were all tasty.
The sit down dinner is very good and tasty too. We choose the 'anytime' dinner option but we went to eat every night by 6:00 to avoid the long lines. We never waited for dinner by doing this but every night when we left around 7:00-7:30 there was a long line out the door. Our server Cristina was amazing. Very good staff on the ship. Alvin and Joel the server assistants were very good too. The prime beef, lobster, shrimp, tenderloin, etc. was all worth ordering. The chocolate melting cake was amazing and I ordered it every night for dessert.
The ship is very clean and every where we looked staff was cleaning. All the staff was very friendly and helpful too. Our room Stewarts ( Yudi ) and I can't recall the other man were very nice. The rooms were clean and if we ever needed anything staff was always there to help.
The casino was very nice and fun! My husband and I went here nightly and had fun. It is easy to set up a casino account ( you use your sail and sign card) and all slot machines accept cash. Don't listen to the reviews about it being difficult. It is so easy and a breeze to set up your casino account and PIN.
The Camp Carnival was wonderful and had activities all day long for our 10 yr old from 8:00 AM to 10PM for free. The staff was very nice.
Club02 for our 15 yr old was very fitting and they had dances, activities, etc. until 1:00 AM nightly that our 15 yr old attended.
TIPS FOR TRAVELING WITH KIDS OR a INFANT --
-- UNLESS you call and ask ahead when on the ship your crib will not arrive until after 7:00 PM. I had to call Guest Service and ask for the crib ASAP at 1:30 when we got to our cabins.
-- Pack small zip lock bags. You will need them to put food in them from the buffet to have food to feed your baby.
-- Pack small pouches of detergent. The laundry room charges $7.50 for ONE LOAD. $3.50 extra for detergent. With three kids I did laundry twice. However, I started washing the laundry in our cabin in our sink and then only drying it in the dryer on the ship to safe money.
-- Pack a small fan. You can hear people walking and the cabin doors slamming all hours of the night. We did carry on luggage and managed to carry on a fan because our baby is a light sleeper. The fan was a life safer for tuning out noise on the ship.
-- Pack an outlet strip. There is only one outlet in the cabin and we needed the outlet for our cell phones, baby monitor, etc. We also brought a night light.
-- Bring Lysol. No one got sick while on the ship and I am convinced it was because we sprayed Lysol everywhere in our two cabins.
-- Bring your beverages! People don't realize that Carnival allows each person to take on one 12 pack of soda or water. We brought on 3 packages of bottled water and one 12 pack of soda. It was a life safer! The ship charges $2.50 for soda and $3.00 for a bottle of water-- too much $$ !! They also allow you to bring on one bottle of wine per person over the age of 21.
POOLS-- there were only two pools on the Dream which is not enough for all the people on board
HOT TUBS -- were barely hot. Also no wave pool for our baby on this ship
ELEVATORS - ALWAYS packed and busy. We took the stairs a lot but was hard with a stroller
GUEST SERVICES -- only three staff were on at a time and long lines always to talk to anyone
INTERNET -- was very slow and they charged $.75 a minute
Debarkation was easy. There were long lines at customs but luckily the staff let us go to a secret 'no line' area because we had a infant. Overall was very nice. I don't think we would go back on Dream but would love to go try a different Carnival ship.