After much searching on the internet and talking to friends selected Carnival Freedom. It was a good choice for our family. The week we sailed was also spring break for numerous colleges so out of about 3,600 passengers, I would say 2,000 were college students! I was a little overwhelmed by how many there were and how they would hold lines of chairs each day, but I was impressed by how well behaved and polite they were. What a joy to see young men in suits to dinner! THey were drinking and partying, but the only stumbling down drunk I saw was an older man who couldn't walk to the ship in Grand Cayman. Spoke with one couple who was leaving teh ship at a port because they were disgusted with it. I'd rather have college kids than a bunch of 7 year old running around and screaching!
We were late arrivals (about 3 pm) on Sunday, so we had no lines to wait in, carried most of our luggage with so were able to change right away.
The food was very good, the pizza is fabulous and available at lunch with a salad. Dining service was very nice and we celebrated my daughter's birthday with a personalized cake and the waiters sang to her.
I was a little disappointed in the stage shows, especially the Beatles tribute, which we left. The comedians (Al Katz and John R), were excellent, we did the adult shows each time. David, the piano bar player was great, very entertaining and had a wonderful song list. We went to the disco a couple of times, too. Would be nice if they had some dance lessons there, I did attend Line and Rumba lessons during the day. Did a little casino time. It was Mardi Gras when we were there and other than the stage show having a New Orleans theme, there was nothing else celebrating. Think this would be a great opportunity for a themed dinner!
People have commented on the smoking, and there was more than I would like to see. Especially cigar smokers on-deck. It would be nice if they limited smoking to only a couple of areas in the ship, and NOT the piano bar!
Saving deck chairs is an ongoing problem, sort of having check-outs, not sure what cruise lines can do about it.