Let me start by saying I was not new to cruising nor new to Carnival. Stay in San Juan,PR @ Marriott Stellaris prior to cruise was great. We boarded the ship @ 1:30 and this was a breeze. We took advantage of buying water at the pier to carry on the ship. You are allowed to bring soda, water and wine aboard with you. Embark was a breeze.
Once you board we went straight to our rooms. They were average Conquest we sailed on last summer was larger but still adequate. The ship is worn and shows her age. We were on the 7th floor and it was nice but some of my family was on the 1st and 2nd floor and it was horrible. As soon as you exited from the elevator it had a foul smell. The carpet was torn and smelled of mildew. Even though they were constantly cleaning it still smelled.
The main issue I had with the ship was how poorly planned the meals were. On cruises in the past you could always find something to eat. The cruise ship stopped everyday at a port and we would return to the ship around 4:00 or 5:00 in the afternoon to only find the buffet lines closed. So you would have long lines at 2 open areas for food. (pizza or hamburgers). This was awful because people were frustrated and short tempered. This could have been handled better. I have seen much better food service.
The ship sailed full but it did not feel over crowded. The population of the ship was made up of most Puerto Ricans and people from the Islands. So needless to say the rules were different they did not want to stand in lines they cut and just total disrespect for the next person.
The ports make this cruise but we will never take this cruise again.