11/04/07 Second cruise, last was Elation in 12/05. Flew in from Tulsa, OK to Houston Hobby. Took a cab for $90!! Wanted the convenience but next time will try the limo.
EMBARKATION - Went great! Arrived at the terminal at 12:00 and proceeded right on board. All staff was very friendly. Enjoyed getting on the ship quickly for lunch and people watching. Got to our room at 1:30, luggage arrived throughout the day.
DINING - We noticed our seating time was not what we requested. We requested 8:00 and got 8:30. We were told we could go to the maitre d at 1:30 to request a change. Upon arrival the maitre d informed us that we would enjoy the seating we were given and that they placed us with people our age, etc. So we accepted that answer. One thing we would have changed was the fact our seating was on the second floor of the Renoir dining room. All the activity seemed to go on below and we could not see any of it. Overall, the main thing we were displeased about was the dining. From room service, to formal dining, to the buffet that the food was bland and reminded us of going to the local Denny's. The midnight buffet was a disappointment as well. We enjoyed the dining experience on the Elation and had high expectations here as well. Even the coffee was terrible. I would hope Carnival does something about the food and coffee on the Conquest. We heard many people complain about this as well.
That was the only issue we had on this cruse. So much of the trip was fantastic.
ROOM - Our room was great. We had the full size window.
SEA DAYS - We absolutely loved the sea days. One thing we loved about the Conquest was the number of open decks. We were next to several other cruise ships and noticed they did not have as many open decks as the Conquest did. We did not encounter bad weather however the wind just about blew my wife overboard one day!! ? She went to open a door on one of the front decks and the wind grabbed the door and her with it.
JAMAICA - This was our favorite port! We were a bit apprehensive due to all the reading about Jamaica. We did the snorkel and beach excursion. The snorkel was great but when we got dropped off at the beach we decided to take a cab into town. The driver was pleasant and told us some history of Jamaica. We felt very safe on both our cab drives.
GRAND CAYMAN - The Sting Rays were great but my DW (what is the "D" for anyway..lol) was afraid of the Sting Rays! The port itself was very commercial and the people didn't seem to be real friendly or care about us. The people in Jamaica and Cozumel treated us better.
COZUMEL - We did the Chakanaab snorkel and had a great time.
DEBARKATION - This was a nightmare. Last time we did the self assist and it wasn't the best so this time we decided to stay on the ship longer and have our bags taken the night before. When our 'number' was called we proceeded to customs in the line that went on forever. The line for porters was long as well so I'm not sure if that would have helped. We are undecided on what to do next time.
SMOKING - Smoking was an issue throughout the ship. It would be nice if they made the atrium a non smoking area. Even around the pools or decks it would be nice if they clearly identified smoking areas.
OVERALL - We loved the cruise and the staff were always friendly. We made some new friends and will cruise Carnival again, however we are looking into some other cruises.