Well this is our 4th cruise with Carnival. We have been on the Glory, Valor, and the Liberty. Of all the ships this one had the most issues and was the newest of the fleet we have been on. Let me say right away that none of it would stop me from booking the Dream again if we wanted to do the itinerary, but otherwise I would not intentionally go.
We boarded around 11:30 on Saturday and it was an easy painless process. We sailed in three cabins on three decks with 2 in each cabin, deck 1,8 and 11. Ouside cabin 1308 had two bathrooms and would be great for a family of 4 with small children. Nice and roomy. DH and I had a balcony on 8 and our parents were in a balcony on 11. We did have a problem with our room charges between my DS and my cabin that took three trips to straighten out with the pursers desk but eventually they got it right.
The ship is beautiful as has been reported and we loved the roominess. The biggest crowds were around the dinner hour going in to the dining room but otherwise it was just fine. The buffets were all exactly as they have been on every other cruise we have been on. Not a long wait and plenty of tables. The waitstaff on this ship are just amazing! So friendly and helpful and always smiling. I thought they did a fantastic job. In MHO the food was really really good. We did the Steakhouse and loved the meal just be prepared for it to take 3 hours to eat. Got in at 7:00 and out at 9:45.
One of the problems we encountered was a three hour airconditioning failure shipwide on Wednesday. The air went out about 3:30 and within an hour it was pretty stiffling. My sons cabin on deck one was completely fogged up and unbearable. The walls were dripping water by daybreak. He had to bail out of the cabin and go up to the deck and watch the sun come up to get some air. They had it back on an hour or so after we docked in Roatan. Also the ship shuddered a lot at night which I thought was pretty odd since it is so new. We had rough seas with high winds two days in a row and it actually forced us to dock at the old Port Royal dock in Roatan as it was too windy for the new Mahogany Bay. No worries though all the excursions raced over to the old dock to pick folks up for the day. But at night the howling and shuddering woke us up repeatedly. We actually felt a lot of water spraying all the way up on our balcony on deck 8 at night when we went outside. The ship did NOT rock that much though and I am sensitive to that. It was more of a noisy shuddering....
Carnival just sent us all a note saying they were sorry for the incovenience of the airconditioning being out. Which is just fine but honestly with all the other reports I have read on these boards prior to sailing there is clearly an electrical problem on this particular ship. We saw quite a few spot repairs going on all the time all over the ship. I wonder if they can ever really get the "bugs" out now. Hopefully the Magic will be better. Also the sewege smell while not too bad on most of the ship is clearly there in the new Serenity Area. It also popped up on several more places all through the trip. It will not bring tears to your eyes but it is like sitting or standing right next to a port-o-pottie.
All of the excursions we did were wonderful. We did the Carnival catamarand beach sail and snorkle and it was great. The private island was super. In Roatan we did Victor Bodden Best of Roatan tour and went around the island and then to Tabyana/ West End Beach. We could snorkle right off the beach and it was beautiful with colorful fish and coral. In Belize we did Cave Tubing with Major Tom. Again a great excursion although the bus broke down in the middle of nowhere on the way back. Fortunately after about 15 minutes sitting in the stiffling heat they got it repaired and we were back on the road...minus the belt to the airconditioner...which was not a big deal. In Costa Maya we took the cab to the beach and spent the day in the loungers. The locals there were awesome and a bucket of beer was $15 for 6 and on ice. They did not charge us for the chairs but we gave them $25.00 when we left. Super nice place. I would do this itinerary again anytime, we really loved it.
Have no fear the trip will be a blast just be cool and roll with it and all will be well. We did for some reason have more cranky rude people than normal on this trip. Several old people almost got in a fight over some seating for bingo in the Encore theater. The shows were great by the way. Loved them all and we went to most and also loved the new comedy format. People need to remember they are vacation and they are making food to feed an army all day long. If you are not first in line there will be plenty left.
Hope all of you preparing to go have a great time! We sure did!!!