My husband and I recently returned from a 4 day cruise on the Carnival Glory, leaving New York and visiting St. John, New Brunswick. This was our third cruise, first time on Carnival (previously on NCL exclusively). We had an relatively relaxing time, but there are two main reasons that we will NOT be traveling Carnival again.
1) The Smoking Policy: When you come from a place like New York that doesn't allow inside smoking (like most of the country at this point), you understand that some accommodations will be made for those who do need to light up - but there is NO escaping the smoke on this ship. Smoking is allowed in many public bars (including the Ivory Club where several public events were held during sea days), notably the Camel Club (Casino) that you must walk through to get around the ship, and even in White Heat (dance club) that the Kids Club used during the day! If you are sensitive to the smell (as I am) this is not the ship for you.
2) Dining: Red Sail (buffet) will be where most of your breakfasts and lunches come from. The room is nice, but the food will leave you uninspired. Long lines (especially at the Deli and Burrito Bar) get old, when you have to wait 30-45 minutes for a decent meal. The food at the main dining room was pretty good! The problem with the dining room was the seating arrangements. While the two of us did have a separate table, they were positioned so close together with other tables of two it didn't make a difference - you were closer to the strangers on your left and right than the person you came with (NCL solved this problem by spreading the tables out). It was only natural to have to engage in small talk with strangers for the 90-120 minutes it took to finish dinner. Not romantic, not private, not relaxing. We ended up skipping most meals in the main dinning room as we didn't feel like dealing with chit-chat at the end of the day. Also, with the late seating - you will miss out on evening entertainment! There are comedy shows to be missed and some of the main Amber Palace shows are only performed once. Other food options are lacking. Room service is handy, but slow and our sandwiches tended to come on soggy bread by the time we got them.
The walls are paper-thin. You will hear everything in the hall.
The standard ship entertainment (especially the cruise director) were good! We enjoyed the shows, the comedy, the mini-golf, and hanging out in the adults only serenity section.