We cruised on the Carnival Liberty Thanksgiving week as part of a wedding group. This was my second Carnival cruise. The first being on the Ecstasy several years ago.
Went smooth enough. Would have ben nice if the person directing us would have pointed out the self service check in stations.
We were in a premium balcony state room. The room was comfortable enough. The bed was OK. Not great just OK. There was no clock whatsoever in the stateroom. With so many activities on a fixed time a clock would be nice. The safe in the room requires you to use a credit card to lock it. The specifically say not to use your Sign and Sail card. This makes it impossible to lock up all credit cards. I much prefer the safes where you enter a code instead of using a credit card. We could not turn on the light on our balcony at all. When I asked about it the steward said "the Bridge had disabled them for safety and navigation reasons." First time I've heard of that.
I purchased the unlimited soda package immediately on boarding. It was $6.00 per day plus tip which is about 33% higher than other lines. Came out to over $51. If I wanted the mug to go with it it was an extra $5. (This has been included on every other cruise I have been on at no extra charge.) They filled a cup out of a can instead of using the fountain soda. One bartender told me that only two of the bars even have the cobra drink dispensers.
We went to the dining room for breakfast the first day. Service was slow and portions were tiny. We used the buffet on Lido deck for all other breakfast and lunches.
Lido deck food was so so with no variety. Same offerings every day. The lone bright spots were Guy's Burger Joint and the Blue Iguana Grill. Guy's burgers were very good and the sauteed mushrooms and onions were better than those in the steakhouse. Blue Iguana have good breakfast and lunch burritos.
Main dining room: We had early dining at 6:00. The service was so slow we missed the 7:30 shows as we did not finish until 8:00. After the second night the shows moved back (more on them later) Food quality was average at best. The deserts were so poor I ordered ice cream most nights which arrived mostly melted. I did order the baked Alaska one night and was very disappointed in the thin slice that was served.
Harry's Steakhouse: We had the wedding reception in the steakhouse. For a $30 surcharge I expected much more. There was a choice of NY Strip or Fillet Mignon which could be paired with Lobster Tail or Shrimp. When I asked to have both the French Onion soup and a salad they had to go ask if that was allowed. The onion soup was the worst I have ever had anywhere. Very few onions and a very strong bad tasting broth. The NY Strip I ordered was good but not worth $30. The deserts offered were horrible. Good thing we had wedding cake. (Which was excellent and baked by the ships bakery.)
Butch Begovich and his staff seemed like a bunch of amateurs. During a "80's Name That Tune" they used on staff members personal iPod and made a big deal about "I'm Coming Out" being a male staff members favorite song. I thought this was extremely inappropriate. They also could not keep the songs from the 80's but were all over the place.
The last show we even bothered with was an overweight black guy singing Motown covers and prancing around like he was super sexy. The theatre was less than half full and we left after his third song.
Completely unorganized. We used the "Self Assist" option. They were supposed to call one deck at a time then the standard debarkation after the self people were done. They started by by calling 3 decks and the first two standard groups all at once. This created an overcrowded situation with the stairways and elevator lobby totally clogged and hot from no ventilation.
In summary, this would have been an OK entry level cruise but that is all. I doubt I'll sail Carnival again.