Embarkation day- Fort Lauderdale
Most cruises we have been on will board early. This one did not. I had received an email before leaving asking us to not arrive before 1:30 pm. We got there about 12:45. We stood in line for about 30 minutes before they began security. Before the cruise we had considered paying the 45 dollars for the ‘faster to the fun’ boarding express pass. I am glad we didn’t because it looked it would have only saved about 20 minutes of line time.
Inserted the sail and sign cards into the card checker and heard those wonderful dings and walked up the ramp. First stop- the lobby bar. The Carnival Freedom was a sister ship to the Conquest we had sailed on in January. The main difference is that the Freedom did not have the 2.0 upgrades. The only bad part- No Guy’s burgers. The good part- more live music.
After finishing our drink we got some lunch at the buffet. We went to our cabin- 8304 on Veranda deck. We were docked next to the Oasis of the Seas. After lunch another drink on Lido deck. We sat and watched a drunk girl dancing in front of us. But, who can’t say that about Lido deck on the first day. Party on.
Muster drill at 3:30. It went pretty quick this cruise.
Back to the room balcony for sail away I noticed we did not have an ice bucket let alone ice. I pushed the button on the phone for the room steward. No answer and I was transferred to guest services. They said I needed to call room service. I called room service and they said I needed to call the room steward. I asked for another ‘new’ person I could try calling (sarcasm intended). They must have detected some slight irritation in my voice. A few minutes later we had a bucket of ice.
I had brought my pirate flag and got it out in preparation for sail away.
My wife (my island girl) and I stood at the railing on our balcony. As you exit the port there are many locals and tourists who watch and wave as you go buy. My island girl and I held up the pirate flag.
We stayed on the balcony till we were several miles out to sea. We went to the Lido bar for a drink. We had late seating for dinner- 8:15. This cruise Patti and I wanted a table for two. We had Posh dining room (aft). We were originally assigned to a table for 4 but I went to see the Maitre D and got the table change. The best time to request a table change is 15 minutes after the early 6pm seating starts.
We were asked to leave the room by 8:30. We went to deck 4 and watched those who were doing self assist leave the boat. It seemed like it was half the ship. Self assist took about an hour. They called zones one and two about 9:30 and we shuffled our way out.
The final ‘ding dings’ as our sail and sign cards were swiped. We found our bags and I waved over a porter. He stayed with us for the 30- minutes it took to go through customs. We then followed him over to the cab line and we had a cab waiting. About 10 minutes latter we were being dropped of curbside at the Delta terminal. We did curbside check in. He took our bags, payment for bags, and printed our boarding passes.
Inda- our bartender in the Lobby Bar
The band ‘Music Boardwalk’
Gede- our Main dining room waiter
Fish and chips
Main buffet (all meals)
Room steward: He would speak to me but ignored my wife.
Bar service in the main dining room
Port call at La Romana (unless you are on a tour don’t bother getting off the boat)
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