Ship sailing was Aug. 30 - Sept. 6 out of Port Canaveral Florida. We came in a day early and stayed at the Country Inn and Suites which is within sight of the cruise ships. We used the rental car shuttle to get to the ship and only had about a fifteen minute wait.
Embarkation was easy and we were on board by about 12:30. We chose this cruise specifically to sail on the Freedom and we were not disappointed. It is a huge, beautiful ship with just about every amenity you could ask for. We seldom felt crowded despite the large number of passengers and were able to get around the ship quite easily.
The rooms were nothing special and this class of ship has not made many improvements on the size of the bathrooms. I guess we have been spoiled by the large showers on the Celebrity Millennium class of ships. Since my 88 year old mother was along with us, we selected a room location in the forward section of the ship near the forward elevators (best kept secret on the ship).
The service we received was excellent from the MDR staff to the housekeeping staff. I also managed to leave my camera in the casino and was quickly able to recover it at Guest Services. Our table waiter (from India) and assistant waiter (from Indonesia) were excellent. One evening our table mates (who are big fans of Indian cuisine) were discussing a special dish they were very fond of. Well, next night he had the dish made special for them as an "appetizer"! That's customer service! We thought the shows were excellent as always.
This was our first time in Labadee and I must say we were pleasantly surprised. I had envisioned crowded beaches due to the large number of passengers but it never happened. We had our choice of locations and plenty of lounge chairs to choose from. There were a few vendors walking around but they took no for an answer. We also walked around the beaches and water park and enjoyed the barbeque cookout for lunch (nothing to write home about but well organized). It was quite a relaxing day. The dock was not completed yet so we were tendered to and from the ship with minimal delays.
Debarkation was as hectic and depressing as always but was very well organized.