This was my second cruise and my girlfriend's first. We were driving down to Ft Lauderdale from Mobile, Alabama. We chose to stay at the Days Inn Airport/South, so we would be well rested for the first day. The hotel was very nice, it had free parking for the entire length of our cruise and a shuttle to the cruise port.
The Freedom is a very nice ship, the layout takes a while to get used to. But, once you learn your way around it is great. The smoking areas are well thought out and I am a smoker. You can smoke on lobby level on starboard deck, some areas of the casino, the Swingtime Lounge, and starboard Lido deck.
Brad was the cruise director, he was a great guy and very funny. There were plenty of things to do all day. We did not go to many shows, but enjoyed the ones we went to. The only problem I had was that the comedy shows ran back to back in the International Lounge. Most people stayed from the first to the second and there was no room for those wanting to see the second show.
The service on board was excellent. Every one was very friendly and helpful.
Guest service never had too long of a line if we needed them. We did have a issue with the room being hot, but our steward brought us a fan that helped cool the room off. We only ate in the MDR twice, we had a very small table in the middle of the floor. After doing port calls we preferred eating a buffet on the Lido anyway. There is food available 24 hours a day. We could always find a decent meal some where. The only food I did not like was the Fish and Chips, I found the meal there repulsive.
The disembarkation process went very smooth. We were the last group called, so we hung out on the Lido until they were ready for us. Finding our luggage was very simple. They had us divided into 32 groups, so there was a small amount of bags in each area. Customs was very quick, so we were out the door and getting into a taxi within minuets.
We enjoyed the cruise and will cruise with Carnival again. Next time we will go to more shows and see what else we can get into.