this was my first cruise ever , my fiance has also posted a review on here but i thought i would submit one from my point of view as well as i feel compelled to do so based on the experience i had .
the pros : fast boarding ,decent food , superb service from our cabin steward conrado (it's been a very long time since i had excellent service with a smile). hawaii and our time spent off the ship was spectacular. that's really about it.
the cons : where do i begin ? others have mentioned the poor entertainment , i would consider this to be an understatement , it was beyond brutal .daytime events consisted of such things as a hairy chest contest , trivia, afternoon tea and bingo if you wanted to pay . night entertainment was equally brutal with bad comics and bad musicians and a talent show starring the passengers .the average age of the passengers had to be 75 and you could tell, it was like being stuck in an old folks home for two weeks . the best act by far was Eddie Miles who did a magnificent tribute to Elvis. Carnival however can not be credited with booking such Talent as Mr. Miles was on a cruise like the rest of us with his fan club and thankfully shared his Talent with all of us giving me what would be the only decent hour of entertainment i had for the entire cruise . the cruise director Stu was brutal , i sincerly got the impression that his only mission for the trip was to soak us for what ever he could .he couldn't make one announcement with out trying to flog everything from steaks to watches to seaweed wraps . even after the ship had docked in vancouver during the disembarking announcment he was busy trying to flog pictures to the people whose numbers hadn't been called yet instead of at the door to thank the passengers and see us off , he left that to someone else .they don't allow outside liquor which is fine . if your not going to allow liquor though don't soak the customer 8.75 a drink . we bought two one litre bottles from carnival when we booked and it cost us over 80 dollars .
in closing my final thoughts are that as a first time cruiser , i wasn't impressed overall . i get two weeks off a year and could not see myself doing this again .we payed a nice chunk of change for this trip and it doesn't deliver value for what you pay, it doesn't even pay for the entitlement to bring a couple bottles of rum on with you when you embark . it basically gets you a spot on the ship where they have you trapped into selling you all the extras . it's really a shame because this is a really nice ship with a good crew the short comings of the cruise director and his constant sales pitches really put a damper on this for me