This was our 7th cruise on Carnival, the first on the Dream. I won a seat at the Carnival Poker Pro Tournament so this was the reason my wife and I was on this cruise.
Almost everything meant or exceeded my expectations for this cruise. We used the Carnival airport transfer from MCO to the ship. A Carnival agent was standing-by at the luggage claim area and directed us to the waiting bus for the 45-minute drive to the ship. Once our luggage was loaded on the bus we didn't see them again until they arrived at our cabin.
It was only 32-minutes from the time we arrived in the terminal building until we were enjoying lunch on the Lido deck (that includes the time to get through the buffet line) and we are not VIP cruisers with Carnival.
Our cabin, a balcony on deck 9, was clean and spacious enough for 2 people on a 7-day cruise. Plus most of my wife's time was spent on deck & mine was spent playing poker. Our cabin steward did an excellent job for us.
The carpet in the hallways was showing signs of wear and tear and staining. Carnival might want to look at replacing the hallway carpet soon.
The food was what we expected for a Carnival cruise. I am easy to please so I was very happy with all of the food served. It was always fresh tasting and hot so no complaints there. The wait staff was the best we've had on Carnival and as good as any we've had on other cruise lines.
As often happens at at least one of our stops, my wife was the last person back on the ship in St Maarten. Security had already come by our cabin for her passport & cellphone. They promised me that their agent would help her get a flight back to Florida. I wasn't too worried about her, I was worried that she would have spent 2 more days on St Maarten shopping.
The only negative I have with Carnival is how slow it was to get back on the ship at a couple of the stops. They need to find away to pick-up the pace a little.
Debarkation was flawless. We handle our own luggage so we were off the ship in minutes. A great job there!
If you're looking for a great value for your cruise dollar then I recommend Carnival. With 7 Carnival cruises under our belts my wife and I have never been disappointed (while the same can't be said for some of the cruises on 'more pricey' cruise lines).