We drove to the port and arrived around 11am. No problem parking and walked inside a very cold terminal. The AC worked very well. We walked right up to the counter and were checked in very quickly and shown a seat to wait to board the ship. After about a 15 minute wait we boarded the ship around 11:30. The rooms were not going to be available until 1:00 so we gave ourselves a tour of the ship. This was very helpful as the week went along as we knew where everything was.
We made it to our room a little early and met the cabin steward, Edson, who did a great job the entire time. Always ice in the room and took care of anything we needed. The muster drill was uneventful and it was nice not to have to wear the lifejacket.
Not long after we left Port Canaveral they had a medical emergency onboard so we had to stop and tie up to let emergency personell board before we made it out to open sea. Not sure what happened but hope the passenger was ok. The Freedom of the Seas has something for everyone...unfortunately even the smokers. It was not pleasant walking through the smoke in the bar on deck 4 every time we went to dinner. That was however the only time we had a problem with this.
Things we enjoyed on the ship include the Flowrider...you have to try this out or at least watch. The rock wall, the ice show and later skating ourselves. The comedians were ok but not as good as past cruises. The other RCC shows were very well done and cruise director Richard Spacey was very entertaining. Everyone we came into contact with was very service oriented and we felt like everyone went out of their way to make it a pleasant experience for all. We never felt crowded on the ship and could always find a table or seat at everything we tried to do.
We decided not to book any excursions with the ship but go it alone in every port and this worked out great for us. Labadee was very hot and the locals hocking their wares were very very pushy. The beach was nice and there seemed to be lots of activities. It never felt crowded at all. Ocho Rios was a pleasant surprise. We were a little concerned about going it alone here but met a nice man who gave us a private 3 hr tour where we got to see and go places we never would have on the ship tour. It ended up being one of our highlights of the trip. Grand Cayman was nice enough. We took the local bus $2.50 pp to the Turtle farm and took the tour $18 pp. We then walked across the street to Dolphin Cove and watched the dolphin show FREE then took the bus back and had a very expensive meal at Margaritaville. I would skip that in the future and just eat a burger on the ship. Cozumel was our last port and one of our favorites of all time thanks to Mr. Sancho's Beach Club. We had been there before and had a great time and did again on this cruise. If you are looking for a great day relaxing and eating and drinking check our Mr. Sanchos. $15 cab ride each way and free admission.
The food in the Main dining room was pretty good. Our waiter was very willing to bring extras or two entrees so we could try different things at each meal. Take advantage of this option and order anything/everything you want. The Windjammer was adequate. I would like for the food to be a little better but overall was fine. My one complaint would be the scrambled eggs for breakfast. They don't get much worse. Definitely opt for the omelet instead.
Disembarking back in Port Canaveral was a snap. We were eating breakfast when our color/number was called and we walked off the ship got our bags in 10 minutes and were headed home by 7:30 am.
All in all a great trip and we had so much fun we booked the Oasis and the Radiance for 2010 while on board to take advantage of the low $100 down payment option and on board credits.
We loved the Freedom of the Seas and recommend her to anyone looking for a great cruise experience.